Calipari re-recruits Orton

New UK Coach John Calipari went to Oklahoma City on Wednesday to try to re-recruit heralded big man prospect Daniel Orton.

Orton’s father, Larry, said that his son would probably stick with his commitment to the Cats. But with so many reversals in his life recently, it was difficult to be 100 percent certain.

“To be honest, I’d be surprised if he went anywhere else,” Larry Orton said of his son. “But it could happen.”

The Orton family has had a difficult year. First Daniel injured a knee, with surgery sidelining him for almost all of his senior season.

Then the player mother passed away. Then UK fired Billy Gillispie, the coach who successfully recruited Orton.,

“That’s hard for an 18-year-old,” Larry Orton said. “You say to yourself, what else is there that can happen?”

Calipari visited the Orton home for about an hour, the player’s father said.

Larry Orton said that the UK coach’s objective seemed to be to reassure Daniel of how well he would fit into Kentucky basketball.

When asked how Calipari said Orton would fit, the player’s father said, “All over, I guess. Whatever your talent is, that is what (determines the role).

Orton does not plan to decide about his basketball future before the weekend, the player’s father said.

“The sooner the better to me,” Larry Orton said. “We’ve got to do more talking.”

Larry Orton said he expected to speak with Calipari on the phone. “About just basic things,” he said. “How he still feels about Daniel. Then see how Daniel feels about him.”


#1 mpennery on 04.02.09 at 3:21 pm

If you liked Kentucky when Billy Gillispie was coach, you’re gonna love Kentucky with Calipari as coach.
It’s a slam dunk decision.

#2 Dan on 04.02.09 at 3:25 pm

In coaching, as in all of life, one can talk the talk or walk the walk.
Our terrific new coach talked the talk perfectly in his first UK media experience.
Then, despite all the items on his agenda, he walked the walk by heading straight for The Orton’s to let them know he wanted Daniel on his team next year.
You cannot get off to a better start than that.
I expect Coach Cal will keep us all very excited with similar great decisions that will bring UK back to the top and keep us there.
UK Track ’72; still bleeding Blue.

#3 Throwback on 04.02.09 at 3:27 pm

Orton is a lock of UK… Who doesn’t want to go to UK at this point?? It would be stupid of him not to join coach Cal and the gang in Kentucky.. Orton’s (and every college player) wants to go to the NBA and get drafted highly. At UK, he has the chance to show the NBA what he can do… Orton seems like a smart kid, and I’m sure he and his father knows the smart choice is Kentucky…

#4 KeefD on 04.02.09 at 3:52 pm

This shows what kind of class act Calipari is. I am so thankful to have him as our coach!

#5 leskew on 04.02.09 at 4:56 pm

You can’t go wrong by sticking with Kentucky and Coach Cal!!

#6 leskew on 04.02.09 at 4:56 pm


#7 roywilliams on 04.02.09 at 5:31 pm

If you want to play for a NCAA title I suggest the young man come on down to Carolina.I mean Calipari has won how many titles? The Wildcats are the Redskins of basketball trying to buy a title.Kentucky folks lower your expectations.Just be content to make the NCAA next year and if you dont try to do better in the NIT.

#8 Bill in Atlanta on 04.02.09 at 5:32 pm

Seems like a no-brainer to me

#9 IMHO on 04.02.09 at 5:35 pm

Euton was a good player but not a great player. His lack of speed would have affected Calipari’s offensive scheme anyway.

#10 FagenBecker on 04.02.09 at 5:42 pm

Dakotah is a 2-star recruit. We don’t have to settle for those anymore. Coach Cal will take UK further than Pitino could have, and will stay for the rest of his career. THANK YOU COACH!

#11 Ryan McCutcheon on 04.02.09 at 6:07 pm

Id much rather have Cousins over Orton

#12 UKGREG90 on 04.02.09 at 6:41 pm

I saw Euton play some this year and with all due respect to the kid, he just wasn’t a major college talent. I was amazed that Billy G. recruited him in the first place. I hope he can go somewhere where the style fits his ability and has great success.

#13 uk71 on 04.02.09 at 6:51 pm

I hope Callipari comes to the conclusion that Jon Hood would fit nicely into his system.

#14 Tim Thompson on 04.02.09 at 7:04 pm

Grammar check your articles please.
“player’s mother”

#15 steve on 04.02.09 at 7:30 pm

All of or most of Gillispie’s recruits were not UK level players. Conner Tucker??????, what the $%#$%. Coach Cal is getting rid of sub par talent to make room for real talent. Gillispie was just going down hill every year. Thank God we fired him before we lost to Morehead or EKU. I know they were not on our schedule but G wanted to weaken our non-conference schedule even more. He was just out of his league and a bad influence for the players and our wonderful state. Coach Cal will change things fast. Not next year, but I promise you he will never lose to VMI or Gardner Web specially at Rupp. Good grief!!! What did we fall to last two years. Barnhart should be fired, now we have to pay Gillispie around 4 million when it is said and done, for nothing but destroying our program. He should have to pay all of his money back.

#16 Larry Randolph on 04.02.09 at 8:16 pm

I would think Orton would flourish in Calipira’s system and his stock would go as would Patterson and Meeks. In fact Patterson and Meeks probably double their signing value. Both need to work on their game big time

#17 Orton staying with UK « Radtek Sports on 04.02.09 at 9:44 pm

[…] Orton was re-recruited by Coach Cal. Go […]

#18 UKfan on 04.03.09 at 6:28 am

Agreed. Same with GJ Vilarino. I think with the recruits Calipari could potentially bring with him, it’s best to let them have a successful career elsewhere, with more playing time.

#19 Cody on 04.08.09 at 2:00 pm

Well, Orton is now asking for release. With the addition of Demarcus Cousins, I understand why he wants to leave.

#20 Californication on 04.08.09 at 7:11 pm

Looks like we have a tarbaby on here who is arrogant about the fact they won the title this year yet is at the same time mad because they are down by four and we just put our star player in…..

As far as titles, you are down by 2 on that front as well.

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