HAZARD, Ky. (WYMT) - University of Kentucky basketball fans who were depressed over the Cats' loss Tuesday night in the NIT got some news Wednesday that lifted their spirits.
One of the top-rated recruits in the country committed to UK, giving fans hope that next season may produce another national championship.
Julius Randle is a 6-9, 225-lb. forward who is rated as a top-five player in the country by several recruiting services.
Randle's decision Wednesday to attend Kentucky was welcome news to Wildcat fans.
"I'm real excited," Tom Boggs said. "I want to see this recruit and I want to see Kentucky come alive."
Darlene Spencer, another UK fan said, "That's big. We need new recruits. We need good ones...real good ones."
Randle joins a recruiting class that includes several other top prospects. That class includes forwards James Young and Marcus Lee, center Dakari Johnson and guards Andrew and Aaron Harrison.
"I wish we would get two or three more," UK fan Martin Dykes said.
Big Blue fans WYMT talked to said Julius Randle signing with the Cats is especially satisfying given the way this past season ended.
"That's the biggest deal," Bart Teague said. "It kind of makes you forget about (Tuesday) night. Everybody is still kind of on a hangover over the NIT loss. But I think bigger things are to come for sure."
Chris Childers, another UK fan, said, "I'm very excited. I think he was the only missing piece that they had. Now they'll have about 13 players who can play next year."
Randle said he will officially sign a letter of intent with UK in April.