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New assistant K.T. Turner talks player development and recruiting

Turner has recruiting ties to a state that Kentucky has had a lot of success in.

COLLEGE BASKETBALL: NOV 12 Louisiana Monroe at SMU

The Kentucky Wildcats have their new assistant coach after Jai Lucas left to take a job on Jon Scheyer’s staff at Duke.

K.T. Turner is the new addition, leaving his position as the associate head coach at Oklahoma to join Calipari’s staff.

Turner has earned a reputation in college basketball as an excellent recruiter, specifically in the state of Texas, and player development through his 17 years as a coach.

Turner recently had his introductory press conference where he talked about both of those traits.

Turner has become known as an excellent player developer as he loves to study the game and pass his knowledge off to players. This passion of his is something he is excited to bring to Lexington.

“Growing up, I played a lot of basketball. Going back to my dad, watching him, watching other coaches, I was around Dana Altman a lot. Being in the gym, working out myself, learning different things, passing on what I know to guys now. I study it, I love doing it, love to see guys get better, no matter if they’re the No. 1 player in the country or barely on the team. I love working with guys and getting guys better.”

Throughout the Calipari era, he has been extremely successful with recruiting in the state of Texas as a lot of his best players have come from Texas.

That is another positive that Turner brings to the table as he has deep ties with recruiting in Texas.

“The relationship piece,” Turner said about recruiting. “I love building relationships with guys and their families. I’m huge on that. When they come, it’s a lifetime relationship. Even sometimes guys I don’t get, we stay in contact when they’re done playing and try to help out anytime I can. I’m a huge relationships guy.”

The state of Texas produces a lot of talent each year and Turner has used his connections to land several Texas recruits at his different positions. However, Kentucky under John Calipari has a different reputation within that state than Turner’s other coaching spots.

Turner will get to coach two players from Texas this season with Daimion Collins being back for a sophomore season and Cason Wallace coming in as a freshman.

Welcome to Lexington, KT!

You can watch Turner’s entire press conference below via Jeff Drummond.

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