Quade Green had a long relationship with Syracuse, but his comfort with coach John Calipari convinced him to sign with Kentucky.
By: Larry Vaught
It was not easy for Philadelphia point guard Quade Green to say no to Syracuse and yes to Kentucky like he did.
“He had a really strong relationship with Syracuse because they had recruited him longer,” said Carl Arrigale, Green’s coach at Neumann Goretti High School. “He had a tougher time turning Syracuse more than accepting Kentucky. He felt bad. I’m proud of him for feeling that way because it proves he has a soul.”
So what did Calipari did to persuade him to pick UK even though the Cats did not start recruiting him until much later than Syracuse?
“Calipari made him feel comfortable and gave him the belief about what he could do. When they started after him hard, he knew these guys really wanted him to run the show next year. That’s when it got tricky for him,” Arrigale said. “I just thought he really told the truth to Quade and his mom. He did not sugar coat anything about how Quade would fit into the equation at Kentucky. In the end he just thought it was a better place for him to continue his career and academics.”
Calipari’s success putting so many guards into the NBA played a factor, too.
“The NBA was a big factor. Any kid with his skill level or ability to play, and wants play at the next level, where else would you want to go but where they put the most guys in the league,”Arrigale said. “He wants to be a NBA player and knows if he goes there they will prepare him for that.”
Arrigale knew former UK assistant coach Orlando Antigua well and Antigua had introduced him to Calipari a few times to where he knew the UK coach a little bit.
“I admired what they did from afar. I like to play fast and be aggressive,” Arrigale said. “We have had a small team the last two years with four guards and one big. We run the dribble drive (offense). I am looking forward to our relationship growing just like Quade is.”