This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2011, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
Kentucky coach John Calipari discusses Turkish center Enes Kanter.Former Wildcats Brandon Knight and Kanter possibly being drafted by the Jazz with the No. 3 overall pick: What I'm hoping is here's what I'll tell you about Enes. Enes is the right size. He just turned 19 years old, like 11 days ago, where everybody tried to make him out to be that he was a 21-year-old, 25-year-old vet, so that he wouldn't play for us which wasn't true. He was my youngest player did you hear what I just said? the youngest player on my team. I had six freshman; he was the youngest player on my team. What I'm saying to you is, he has true size. The league is getting smaller, OK? The threes are smaller. The fours are smaller. But he's not going to get smaller. Which means a guy like him, he can dominate his position, because he's the real size and he's physical, he's got a skill level and he's a wonderful kid. Someone's going to pass on him, and they're going to say, 'Oh, my gosh. What did we do?' And they're not going to say it right away. But they're going to look back and they're going to say, 'This kid rebounds with our league. He has the right size he's not undersized for our league. He's big.' I mean, how many times is there a guy in the draft at his size, [with a good touch] and he's young he's 19. He's an intelligent kid. His dad's a college professor; his dad was a college professor. The reason he didn't play college basketball is the club gave his dad money to put him in private school, because he did not want him in the club school. The dad then used that money for private school, and the NCAA said, 'Well, if the club paid for it directly, it's fine. If they gave you the money and you paid, he will never play college basketball again.' That's why he did not play, simply. So, I'm saying to you if he had played for us, he would be the No. 1 pick in the draft. There's no question. … I was with him the whole year. Here's a kid that could've tanked it. He continued to go to school. He finished the term academically, even when he heard that they weren't going to let him ever play college basketball. Can you imagine that? Ever. And he still stayed in school and was loyal and did the things. … It ends up being a great story. And I'll say it again: If it were me picking, I'm taking him No. 1. Because I was with him all year. No disrespect to the guard from Duke. The kid from Arizona: no disrespect. They're good. But this kid is the right size at this position at that age. And he's another one that would fit into what the success Utah has had, in my opinion, has always been about the type of team they built and the type of people, and that's what it's been. And that's why the city … has taken to the team it's their team. 'It's the kind of guys we want to cheer for.' Both, either one if they got either one of those guys, they're starting to be what they want to be. Brian T. SmithTwitter: @tribjazzfacebook.com/tribjazz