Inside Carolina reported Friday that Coach Roy Williams and North Carolina are in pursuit of Kentucky transfer Sacha Killeya-Jones.
The 6-10, 221-pound forward received a full release from Kentucky to transfer on Monday. Killeya-Jones considers Chapel Hill his hometown. The highly touted transfer announced “After much deliberation with my family, I have decided that it is in my best interest to ask for my release and explore other opportunities at this time.” Kentucky has granted the former 5-star player a full release.
His mother, Ley Killeya-Jones, confirmed to Inside Carolina on Friday that UNC is recruiting him once again, this time as a potential transfer.
“It’s going to be a much more truncated process this time,” Ley Killeya-Jones said Friday. “It’s not going to be long and drawn out like it was before. He has a much better idea of what’s important and what he’s looking for.”
Killeya-Jones started with 30 schools and has narrowed it to ten that are under consideration, according to his AAU program – Team Felton. Those schools are: Arizona State, Clemson, Georgetown, Nevada, N.C. State, Notre Dame, Pittsburgh, Texas, UNC, and Wake Forest.
Killeya-Jones appeared in 34 games as a sophomore at Kentucky during the 2017-18 season, averaging 3.3 points and 2.9 rebounds in 13.7 minutes per game.
As a transfer, Killeya-Jones will need to sit out the 2018-19 season and then will be eligible to play in 2019-20. With Luke Maye graduating after the 2018-19 season, there would be an immediate need for quality post players at UNC the following season.
Killeya-Jones was a McDonald’s All-American out of Lynchburg (Va.) Episcopal, ranked No. 23 in the Class of 2016. He was rated as a 5-star post player coming out of high school.
Killeya-Jones originally committed to Virginia, after being on the UNC recruiting board since 2013.
Yet after six months on the Cavs’ commitment board, he opened up his recruitment and UNC again attempted to land the talented 5-star. Killeya-Jones, in turn, made several trips to the Smith Center, even playing pickup with the team. Roy Williams would ultimately offer a scholarship in June 2015.
However Killeya-Jones was adamant that he could not choose UNC while the ongoing NCAA investigation was unresolved. He eventually signed with Kentucky, but with a glut of post players possibly staying and coming in, including recent UNC target EJ Montgomery, Killeya-Jones has a fantastic shot of landing with North Carolina in the 2019-20 season.