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Kentucky Is The Favorite To Land 4-Star F Shareef O'Neal After Arizona Decommitment

A closeup of a Nike basketball with Kentucky's logo on it.

LEXINGTON, KY - NOVEMBER 09: A basketball with a Kentucky Wildcats logo sits on the floor during the game against the Georgetown College Tigers at Rupp Arena on November 9, 2014 in Lexington, Kentucky. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

Shareef O'Neal has decommitted from Arizona. The son of NBA legend Shaquille O'Neal now becomes one of the nation's most sought after players.

As last night's ESPN story on Sean Miller began to spread, O'Neal expressed some concerns about the program to which he was pledged. He tweeted (and quickly deleted) "Lol don't want to be involved with that" with a set of emoji.

It wasn't a direct nod towards the Arizona situation, but the message was pretty clear. Today, O'Neal officially announced a decision.

He decommitted from Arizona this afternoon, citing the Miller situation. O'Neal originally pledged to the Wildcats last April.

Even months after his commitment, many recruiting experts thought that O'Neal would end up elsewhere. Kentucky has been the team most-often cited as a potential destination.

Despite signing with Arizona, O'Neal will be able to get out of his commitment without any drama. The star forward wisely did not sign a binding National Letter of Intent in November.

Instead, Shareef O'Neal signed financial aid papers, keeping his options open. According to ESPN, fellow Arizona signee Brandon Williams, a four-star point guard, did the same.

O'Neal didn't sign a letter of intent during the early signing period, instead choosing to sign nonbinding financial aid papers with Arizona. As a result, O'Neal won't need Arizona to release him in order to go elsewhere.


Without O'Neal, Arizona's 2018 class consists of ESPN 100 point guard Brandon Williams, who also decided against signing a binding letter of intent in November.

Kentucky is once again the likely favorite to land Shareef O'Neal.

All six predictions in 247Sports' crystal ball predict that he will join John Calipari's program. O'Neal is the No. 33 player in the class of 2018, per 247's composite player rankings. He is the ninth-ranked power forward in the country, and the fourth-ranked player in the state of California.