An update on 2025 hoops Kai Rogers’ recruitment

WAUWATOSA, Wis. – Many of Kai Rogers’ Wauwatosa West teammates might have been impressed by one particular spectator at the Trojans’ game against Edgerton Monday night. 

Rogers, however, barely batted an eye when he looked up into the stands and saw Wisconsin coach Greg Gard looking back at him. 

“Coach Gard and I have a really good relationship,” Rogers said. “So when he comes over to watch a game, it really doesn’t affect me at all. I’m sure for others, that gets them excited to play in front of a college coach like that.”

Rogers has been receiving plenty of attention since he was offered his first scholarship in eighth grade. That doesn’t mean the 6-9, 230-pound junior is bored by the communication. 

“It’s still really cool when I get a new offer,’ Rogers said. “To be able to talk to the coaches, and especially when I get to go on a visit and talk to the players themselves, the ones that were once in your same shoes, that’s really important.”

Rogers had little trouble with visiting Edgerton Tuesday, setting a school record with 19 defensive rebounds in a 20-point, 24-rebound performance that keyed a blowout Trojan win. 

“At the end of every game, the first number I look at is my rebounds,” Rogers said. “They need to be above 10 for sure. And I try to be above three assists, and anything over 10 points, I know I did my job. A couple of days ago, our coach asked me if I knew what the school record was. I didn’t know what it was, but I knew I didn’t have it. He told me I was going to set it tonight, and I went out and did it.”

Gard was no doubt pleased with what he saw, but he is only one of a number of Rogers’ suitors. Other offers include Purdue, Illinois, Iowa, Marquette and of course, Wisconsin. He’s averaging 19.8 points and 14.5 rebounds per game this season, while shooting  69 percent from the floor and 65 percent from the free throw line. 

His Trojans squad is 13-5 and is currently receiving votes in the WIAA Division 2 basketball poll. 

Rogers picked up an Iowa State offer in May of 2023, and said he’s always been impressed with the Cyclones’ program. 

“I’ve been to Ames twice now,” Rogers said. “One of the times was last year when they played Kansas. The atmosphere was great. All the fans were really into it. There’s no other sports teams around there, so Iowa State is really the focus, which is really nice.”

The Cyclones’ sustained success is another feather in the school’s cap. 

“They are definitely a program on the rise,” Rogers said. “I know they had some tough years before Coach TJ got there, but they are figuring out exactly what kind of program they want to be. When you have a school that knows their identity, that’s really cool.”

JR Blount, a Milwaukee native, is Rogers’ main recruiter at this stage. Rogers said the Cyclones’ success with recruits from the state of Iowa isn’t playing a huge factor in his mind. 

“I don’t think that really has an impact on me right now,” Rogers said. “But it’s been great getting to know Coach Blount, and having those guys being from here is really nice.”

Rogers said he hopes to have a decision made before his senior basketball season begins, and says his recruitment right now is wide open. 


Josh Flickinger