UK assistant could be in mix at UCF
Kentucky assistant coach Orlando Antigua could emerge as a candidate for the head coaching job at the University of Central Florida.
[picapp align=”left” wrap=”true” link=”term=Orlando+Antigua&iid=8243165″ src=”a/e/7/2/Kentucky_News_a558.jpg?adImageId=11362943&imageId=8243165″ width=”234″ height=”178″ /]After firing 17-year head man Kirk Speraw, Knights Athletic Director Keith Tribble told the Orlando Sentinel what he wanted in his new coach.
“I would say No. 1 a relentless recruiter, No. 2 a relentless recruiter and No. 3 a relentless recruiter,” Tribble told the newspaper. “I think recruiting is the lifeblood of determining how well your program can be. I think it gives you chance to be successful. I think without that, you will struggle. So I think recruiting is going to be key. Does that individual have to be a sitting head coach, a current head coach? That would be preferable, but it’s not an absolute.”
Antigua has been with Wildcats head coach John Calipari for two seasons – his final season at Memphis and this year at UK. Prior to joining Calipari’s staff he spent five years on the Pittsburgh staff under coach Jamie Dixon. Antigua played for the Panthers from 1991-95.
Judging by the freshman classes at UK and Memphis the past two seasons Antigua certainly seems to pass the eye test as a top-notch recruiter. Each school had the nation’s No. 1 recruiting class according to Rivals.com. In the photo above Antigua has his arm around Wildcats point guard John Wall, the nation’s top recruit, during the SEC tournament in Nashville.
Antigua also has ties to several fertile recruiting grounds. He grew up in the Bronx, not to mention his time at Pittsburgh and Memphis.
Antigua also would play well in South Florida. He’s a native of the Dominican Republic born to a Dominican father and a Puerto Rican mother. And he has a year’s worth of experience in Conference USA.
Kentucky, a No. 1 seed, begins play in the NCAA tournament on Thursday against East Tennessee State.