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Kentucky Recruit Enes Kanter is the Latest John Calipari Recruit Engulfed in Drama

Enes Kanter, a consensus Top 5 high school basketball recruit who played professional in Turkey the last few years and was expected to step in and start for Kentucky this year, may be getting a call from the NCAA this week. According to his pro team’s general manager, Kanter received more than $100,000 in cash and benefits over the last three years, reports Pete Thamel of the New York Times. Kanter, a 6-foot-11, 270-pound power forward, has long portrayed his Turkish experience akin to a prep school one in the United States. In April, Kentucky coach John Calipari said, “there was no money, from what we’re seeing, what the kid is saying and the family, and what Nike is saying.”

Writes Thamel:

Karakas said that Fenerbahce provided housing to Kanter and his family for more than three years, provided them with food and pocket money and paid Kanter a salary of more than $6,500 a month during his final season.

After the story went online last night, Kentucky fans moved quickly to hammer and dispute Thamel’s report, and the Kentucky media is saying this isn’t a John Calipari scandal (it’s not – yet, at least). According to one report, the NCAA isn’t expected to weigh in for about two weeks. But it sure is odd that there often seems to be some kind of drama surrounding high-profile John Calipari recruits. But there’s a reason why you don’t find this kind of drama around Roy Williams’ recruits or Coach K recruits. As we said when the Eric Bledsoe story broke … eventually, Calipari’s going to slip up (that is not to say he’s to blame for any of the Kanter mess). With his luck, he’ll already be back in the NBA. [NYT, Kentucky Sports Radio; photo via Getty]

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