Kentucky Now Talking to Surging UNC Basketball Target

UNC basketball is firmly in the mix for Nikolas Khamenia, but the competition is heating up quickly.
UNC basketball recruiting target Nikolas Khamenia
UNC basketball recruiting target Nikolas Khamenia / Sam Ballesteros/The Republic / USA TODAY

Duke and Kentucky are the only bonafide bluebloods missing on Harvard-Westlake School (Calif.) four-star forward Nikolas Khamenia's consistently growing offer sheet. That in itself speaks to the recently minted UNC basketball recruiting target's potential to secure a fifth star by his name in the near future.

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Plus, it looks as though one of those missing powerhouses may be on the verge of officially entering the fray for the 6-foot-8, 215-pound Khamenia's notably versatile skill set.

On Wednesday night, Rivals' David Sisk reported that Kentucky, now under the direction of former BYU head coach and 1996 Wildcat national champion Mark Pope, "has been speaking with the 2025 wing."

In the 10 days since helping power the USA Basketball U18 National Team to a title at the FIBA U18 AmeriCup in Buenos Aires, Nikolas Khamenia has reported new offers from Michigan, Oregon, Louisville, Purdue, Notre Dame, and the latest on Wednesday night in Arizona.

At the same time, the surging 17-year-old sensation has jumped several spots to No. 30 overall on the 247Sports 2025 Composite, 30 notches higher than where he debuted in the rankings last summer.

Khamenia is one of 15 rising high school seniors holding an offer from UNC basketball head coach Hubert Davis. All 15 remain undecided. However, one of them, five-star guard Isiah Harwell, recently announced a top four that didn't include the Tar Heels.

ALSO READ: UNC Extends to Offer to Elite 2026 Recruit, Lifelong Tar Heel Fan

Matt Giles


Matt Giles is the editor and publisher of FanNation's Blue Devil Country and All Tar Heels, covering the Duke Blue Devils and UNC Tar Heels on