“John [Calipari] could have called anyone in the country, but he called me and asked if I wanted to play in this game,” Turgeon said. “We both knew that we were going to have young teams going in. I thank him for giving us this opportunity. The publicity that we are going to get from playing in this game is big for our program, win or lose.”
No team comes close to Kentucky in the publicity department. NBA draft night has become an alternate graduation ceremony for the school, which has produced 11 first-rounders in Calipari’s three seasons, including the No. 1 pick in two of the past three years. As if the Wildcats don’t enjoy enough saturation coverage already, ESPN just concluded a reality show entitled “All-Access Kentucky.”
Not that Calipari needs any assistance, but the behind-scenes show could help with recruiting. Even so, some coaches have expressed reluctance to allow cameras, fearing the distraction. Turgeon isn’t among them.
“If you get a show like that, it means you’ve had some pretty good years,” he said.