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“I miss Kahlil.” Calipari explains how he saw Whitney’s path at UK

Kentucky has been fine, better than fine actually, since Kahlil Whitney left the team as the team was leaving for Lubbock, Texas and arguably the toughest game on the schedule. Kentucky won that game at Texas Tech and and then six of the next seven, a 7-1 record since the McDonald’s All-American announced his unexpected departure on January 24.

At the time, John Calipari issued a statement to say, “This is tough for me because Kahlil is a tremendous person who is going to do great things. I certainly don’t want to see him go because I wanted to continue to coach him, but I understand his decision and, as we always do here, will support him in whatever way we can.”

Little has been said of Whitney since, and speculation is he will enter the NBA draft later this year. But he came up last night on Calipari’s call-in show when a caller asked about mid-year transfers like Whitney and Quade Green, and Cal had nothing but positive things to say about his former player.

“First of all, I miss Kahlil,” Calipari said Wednesday night. “I loved him. (We’re) trying to figure out his path, how we can help him. The one thing at the end of the day, I felt that he was the guy that we needed in case we play somebody with size and athleticism, that he could come in and help us.”

Whitney left because things “had not gone as he had hoped,” he wrote in his letter to Big Blue Nation, but Calipari said he saw early on that Whitney might be one that would need a little more time.

“After he was here, I thought, you know what, this may take a little time like it did with Ashton and PJ and Immanuel, probably not as much time as Nick, but I thought it was going to take time,” Calipari said.

It’s too bad Whitney and those around him weren’t willing to see it all the way through.

Article written by Drew Franklin

I can recite every line from Forrest Gump, blindfolded. Follow me on Twitter: @DrewFranklinKSR

15 Comments for “I miss Kahlil.” Calipari explains how he saw Whitney’s path at UK

  1. Skywalker
    4:03 pm February 20, 2020 Permalink


  2. Cletis75
    4:31 pm February 20, 2020 Permalink

    Maybe he sees a quicker way to the NBA. He wasn’t getting the exposure he needed to reach his end goal.

    • trumpetguy
      3:21 pm February 21, 2020 Permalink

      Don’t mean this in a demeaning way, but he was getting exposed. 6-6, 6-7 wing players must have perimeter skills offensively and be able to defend what are usually really, gifted athletes. Currently KW just doesn’t have that.

  3. Rick_S
    5:08 pm February 20, 2020 Permalink

    It was his old man…Hope he didn’t ruin his NBA career

  4. IrishCat
    5:13 pm February 20, 2020 Permalink

    Based solely on next year’s roster, I think if he had come back for a second year he would definitely be coming back for a third..

  5. J. Did
    6:25 pm February 20, 2020 Permalink

    I miss him too. I could see it in his eyes in Athens. He was done. And, that’s a shame. Really glad Keion Brooks, Jr. and Johnny Juzang have stuck it out. Khalil was a key. Now it’s KBJr and JJ. They’re all key. Must be hidden reasons besides bruised ego.

    • UKfanman01
      10:00 pm February 20, 2020 Permalink

      Too impatient and way too high up on himself. If he wanted to see more playing time he should’ve put in the work. These players should take lessons from IQ. When they’re one social media posting stupid and pointless bull$*** IQ is working out and hitting the gym. His game shows too. Whitney is a twitter queen and his priorities weren’t on the court. Wish him the best of luck as he moves forward.

  6. chris gettelfinger is not walking through that door
    6:39 pm February 20, 2020 Permalink

    It’s not IF but WHEN “we play somebody with size and athleticism” in March. I hope this doesn’t cost us.

    I thought he was a great dude too when I saw the video of his signing at his elementary school and all. I still think he probably is, but this soured me. I wish him luck. I guess he would rather go pro, even if he has to play in the G league or overseas, than go to school for another year.

  7. friendsofcoal
    7:33 pm February 20, 2020 Permalink

    Khalil should’ve stayed and learned like all the others do. To me that shows weakness and so imo he’ll never make it.

    • dan1965
      11:26 pm February 20, 2020 Permalink

      To many kids today think there 1 and done,or even good enough to just go straight to the NBA.
      I was watching an NBA game recently and 1 of the announcers said the same basically,then he said,but there wrong ! He said this is a man’s league,and most of them can’t,or won’t even play for a few years, after at least 1 year in college,and he’s exactly right !
      There’s gonna be a whole lotta kids that find that out the hard way. Yeah Cal makes it hard, and expects a lot for you to be able to get on the court ad play,but what do they think an NBA coach will do,just put them in and let them play no matter what ?!!

  8. Looother
    8:04 pm February 20, 2020 Permalink

    He got some real bad advice from his posse and he’s immature. Hope he get what he deserves…

    • CrystalBall
      10:34 pm February 20, 2020 Permalink

      Think you may be right, Looother. Too many 5 stars leaving. Has to effect future recruits.

    • ClutchCargo
      3:31 pm February 21, 2020 Permalink

      Looother is a passive-aggressive troll who occasionally includes a little bit of truth in his trolling.

  9. trumpetguy
    3:46 pm February 21, 2020 Permalink

    Highly suggest everyone to go down to Memphis, Atlanta, or up to Indy etc., and watch an NBA game in person. The SIZE and SKILL LEVEL of NBA players is off the chart, infinitely superior to college players. Not even close! Television does not do these guys justice in the coverage of actual skill sets. Would really love to hear some former UK players interviewed and give in-depth insight to their NBA experience, and hear from them their honest evaluations of NBA type talent. ALL incoming freshmen and even some current college players (plus family members) would do well and listen to what NBA type level is all about, before making this type decision. Wish them all nothing but the best.

  10. catfan312
    3:00 pm February 23, 2020 Permalink

    He’s gone so why are we still yapping about this kid. He didn’t want to be here so why would we want to keep talking about him? Good luck to him wherever he goes but move on