Decision on Kanter's appeal expected any time

jtipton@herald-leader.comDecember 3, 2010 

Anxious. Eager to know. Believing he could make a big difference.

Kentucky players are no different than their fans when it comes to the long-awaited decision on whether the NCAA will "free" Enes Kanter.

The definite and final decision on Kanter's disputed eligibility is expected at any time.

"I think we're all getting pretty anxious," wing Darius Miller said Thursday. "He's a great player and he'd be a huge help and asset to the team. We're all waiting like everybody else."

Earlier this fall, the NCAA declared Kanter permanently ineligible because during the last of the three seasons he played for a professional team in his native Turkey, he received $33,033 in excess of the permitted "actual and necessary" expenses. UK and the NCAA have agreed on that.

UK's appeal of that ruling was expected to take place this week. NCAA procedures suggest a decision would be made the same day as the appeal hearing, but could take a day or two to announce.

"Really, I don't have a clue when we'll find out," Miller said Thursday. "Hopefully, we do find out today."

Assistant coach John Robic, who again substituted for head coach John Calipari in a media session, said the program had no idea when a decision would be announced.

What is not in dispute is that Kentucky would welcome Kanter to the team.

"If he plays Saturday (at North Carolina), I don't know, that'd be crazy," freshman guard Doron Lamb said. "I know Kentucky would be happy."

Lamb acknowledged that he thinks about Kanter joining the team.

"I don't really sleep on it," he said. "But I think about it sometimes. ... We just have to wait and see."

Talk is not cheap

UK coaches have emphasized the need for players to communicate. Robic said that figures to be even more important on the road at North Carolina.

"I thought we got better at it the last game both offensively and defensively," he said. "And that is important. ... You have to relay calls to one another. You are not going to be able to hear all the time. So you have to rely on each other and trust everyone."

Before the Boston University game, Brandon Knight was noticeably more chatty as the Cats warmed up. The coaches also want Lamb to speak up more.

"He's trying to talk more," Robic said of Lamb. "We're on him. His teammates are on him because that's something that will just elevate everybody's game and make us a better team."

Lamb said his previous coaches did not ask him to talk more.

"I didn't really say a word," he said. "I might say, 'I got your help.' But I really wasn't saying anything."

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