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Keion Brooks tells his story

“As long as I can remember, I’ve always had a ball in my hand.”

HIGH SCHOOL BASKETBALL: APR 20 Jordan Brand Classic Boys Game Photo by Jeff Speer/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

“Meet The Wildcats” started the week off with a new feature on freshman forward Keion Brooks Jr.

A product out of Fort Wayne (IN), Brooks has loved the game of basketball from an early age.

“As long as I can remember, I’ve always had a ball in my hand. I always gravitated towards basketball because it was just something I fell in love with early.”

Brooks comes from a basketball family, as Keion Brooks Sr. played Division I basketball at Wright State and played professionally as well.

With his grandparents having passed away, they are now Brooks’ motivation to continue to work hard and not only grow as a basketball player, but as a person.

“They really enjoyed watching me play. They wanted me to be the best player and the best person I could be so every time I step on the court, I try to play hard every possession for them.”

As far as his recruitment to Kentucky, Brooks says he appreciated John Calipari’s honesty.

“Coach Cal was 100% genuine. He never told me a lie. He told me it was going to be hard, which it is. He’s going to push me everyday to be the best player I can be.”

Telling players the exact opposite of what they want to hear has proved to be a successful strategy to get many special players to come through Lexington, including Brooks who chose UK over the Indiana Hoosiers.

At 6-7, Brooks is a versatile scorer from inside and out. In normal lineups, Brooks will likely back up Kahlil Whitney at the small forward spot. With any extra added weight from the summer, though, Brooks can be slotted in at power forward in small-ball lineups, where he can be a matchup nightmare. He has the size and length to be a great defender as well.

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