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Monday, January 10, 2011
Calipari: Kanter ruling sets precedent

By Diamond Leung

Kentucky coach John Calipari spoke at length today regarding the NCAA upholding a ruling that forward Enes Kanter would be permanently ineligible due to impermissible compensation "above his actual and necessary expenses" that he received from his Turkish club team. And in his comments, Calipari fails to see the logic of the NCAA's decision.

"This kid did not have a contract, so they just set another precedent -- you don't have to have a contract," Calipari told reporters. "Now [hypothetically] that club comes back and says, 'We gave him pocket money of $400,' then he is ineligible for his life. It doesn't matter [how much] money. That's what was just done in this decision.

"So not just us, I mean everybody looks at this and says the [players] could use it for education, they could use it for their health, they could use it for whatever they want, [but] they're never going to play college athletics.

"And the clubs over there are smart now. They'll go put a couple hundred dollars out there, and they know. They don't even have a to put a lot. They're saying, 'This is the greatest thing ever.'"

Meanwhile, the Kentucky Bluegrass Stallions of the Premier Basketball League sent out a news release last night expressing their interest in offering Kanter compensation and a spot on their team, according to the Lexington Herald-Leader.
"We're prepared to do everything in our power to get Enes Kanter to join our team," Stallions president Kristin Nelson said. "We are prepared to offer a very lucrative package that would not only pay him generously but also offer comprehensive insurance coverage against injury. Even if he just played for us at home we'd love to have him.

"Obviously Enes would be a valuable addition to our roster," Nelson said. "But we're convinced that playing for the Stallions would help Enes as well. Enes can continue his quest for a great University of Kentucky education as he pursues a championship ring with the Stallions. Our season ends in March, so he'd have plenty of time to get ready for the (NBA) Draft."