As summer stretches into fall, incoming Kentucky men’s basketball freshman Zvonimir Ivišić is still not on campus in Lexington.
There have been widespread rumors of Ivišić’s difficulty in attempting to enroll at the school, and the Herald-Leader asked UK for a statement about that early Tuesday.
On Tuesday afternoon, UK spokesperson Jay Blanton provided one.
“Unfortunately, misinformation is being perpetuated regarding the admission status of someone wishing to attend the University of Kentucky,” the statement read.
“The truth is members of our university — from our athletics department to our administration and all other units — are working together efficiently and in a manner that is consistent with the institution’s admissions standards. These are often complex issues, with multiple aspects to them, and they require many people, working to do the right thing for an individual wishing to attend the university. That is what we are doing. Spreading unfounded rumors helps no one.”
A statement from UK spokesperson Jay Blanton:
“Unfortunately, misinformation is being perpetuated regarding the admission status of someone wishing to attend the University of Kentucky. The truth is members of our university – from our athletics department to our administration…
— University of Kentucky (@universityofky) September 5, 2023
A 7-foot-2, 220-pound forward who previously spent two seasons playing for Studentski Centar Podgorica — a team based in Montenegro — Ivišić committed to UK in early August.
Ivišić, who is from Croatia, is already listed on UK’s online roster page for the men’s basketball team with the assigned jersey number of 44.
On Aug. 14, UK formally announced the addition of Ivišić to the 2023-24 team.
As part of that official announcement, UK head coach John Calipari said “Big Z” would provide a major presence around the rim for the Wildcats this season.
“Defensively he is an elite shot blocker who moves well for being 7-foot-2 and can impact the game from the outside-in because of his ability to make 3s,” part of Calipari’s statement read.
In addition to his unique potential as a modern day big, Ivišić also figured to represent a kind of safety net for Kentucky given current injuries to big men Aaron Bradshaw and Ugonna Onyenso.
Neither Bradshaw nor Onyenso played for the Cats during this summer’s GLOBL JAM in Canada, which UK won while representing the United States.
The annual kickoff event for the Kentucky men’s and women’s basketball seasons — Big Blue Madness — is expected to take place Oct. 13 inside Rupp Arena.