Kentucky star freshman Shaedon Sharpe won't play this season, John Calipari says

Star freshman and potential top-10 pick Shaedon Sharpe won't play for Kentucky this season, men's basketball coach John Calipari announced Monday.

Sharpe graduated from Dream City Christian (Arizona) early and enrolled for the spring semester at Kentucky -- with the expectation he would only practice with the team and then play in games next season. Speculation that the Canada-born Sharpe could suit up this season began to rise, however, when ESPN reported in January that he could potentially enter the 2022 NBA draft.

Calipari put the rumors to bed Monday morning via Twitter.

"After talking with Shaedon and his parents, we want to end all of the speculation by again saying that he will not play for us this season," Calipari wrote. "He is committed to bettering himself and our team in practice this year and being better prepared to lead us next season."

A 6-foot-6 guard, Sharpe was the No. 1-ranked prospect in the 2022 high school class. He rose to the top of the rankings after a summer playing for the UPlay Canada grassroots program, where he averaged 22.6 points, 5.8 rebounds and 2.7 assists while shooting 55.6% on 2s and 36.1% from 3-point range.

Sharpe is No. 7 in ESPN's 2022 NBA draft rankings.

Kentucky, No. 5 in this week's AP poll, plays at South Carolina on Tuesday. The Wildcats are 19-4 overall, 8-2 in the SEC.