Calipari not optimistic about Kanter's eligibility

jtipton@herald-leader.comDecember 21, 2010 

Enes Kanter, left, and assistant coach Kenny Payne watched warmups for UK's Blue-White Scrimmage on Tuesday, Oct. 26, at Rupp Arena.


The last caller into John Calipari's radio show Monday night asked if the Kentucky coach could give her reason to hope the NCAA will declare Enes Kanter eligible.

Calipari did not sound optimistic.

"You can keep hoping and praying," he told the caller, "but, you know, it's in the NCAA's hands. If they choose not to let him play, he will not play."

Calipari said that Kanter and his family did not use the compensation he received for playing for a Turkish professional team for extravagance. All the compensation was used "for educational purposes," he said.

Calipari also threw out the idea of Kanter paying back the $33,033 in excess of permitted expenses he or his family received in the third year he played for Fenerbahce Ulker. Left unsaid was any money in excess of permitted expenses Kanter received in each of the first two seasons with the team.

Calipari also volunteered that Kanter might sit out this season and then be eligible next season. Earlier this year, the NCAA declared Kanter permanently ineligible, a decision UK has been appealing.

Finally, Calipari said that Kanter had the option to sue the NCAA, thus playing for Kentucky if he gains an injunction temporarily invalidating the NCAA ruling.

But, Calipari added, "I've not talked to him about getting an injunction."

Jerry Tipton

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