Pratt named color analyst for UK basketball

Mike Pratt, a two-time All-Southeastern Conference performer at Kentucky and a former college and NBA coach, has been named the analyst for the University of Kentucky Radio Network...

LEXINGTON, Ky. --- The announcement was made Thursday by Jim Host, President and CEO of Host Communications, Inc., the rights holder for UK basketball broadcasts. Pratt replaces Sam Bowie, who resigned in September.

“I’m delighted that Mike Pratt has accepted our offer to be the new color analyst on the UK Radio Network,” Host said. “He satisfies all of the goals that we were looking for -- someone who has a thorough knowledge of the game both as a player and a coach and someone who has extensive broadcast experience. He’ll do an excellent job for us and I’m tickled to death to have him on board.

“Again, I’m sorry to see Sam Bowie resign because he had become a valuable member of our broadcast family, but I’m just delighted to have Mike join our team.”

Pratt began broadcasting games in 1985 for Creative Sports in Charlotte. Since that time, Pratt has served as an analyst for the Charlotte Hornets Television Network and ESPN before spending the past three seasons working exclusively for Fox Sports South Net, analyzing games across the region, including UK games.

“I’ve really enjoyed my time the past eight seasons working as a basketball analyst on television, but to have the chance now to return to my alma mater and be a part of the radio team with Tom Leach is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity,” Pratt said. “I have listened to Tom on the football broadcasts and I look forward to working with him. I’m very excited, not only to have this opportunity, but to have a chance to follow Tubby Smith’s team, one of the best in the nation each year.”

“I think Mike Pratt is a great choice,” said Larry Ivy, Kentucky’s Athletics Director. “Jim Host has just hit a home run with the addition of Mike to our radio team. I’m sure our fans will feel the same way once they hear Tom and Mike calling the action.”

Pratt lettered at Kentucky for Coach Adolph Rupp from 1968-70. In addition to his all-conference honors, he was a two-time Academic All-SEC selection and Kentucky’s third Academic All-American in 1970. While playing alongside UK’s all-time leading scorer, Dan Issel, the 6-4 Pratt averaged 19.3 points per game as the Wildcats finished as the nation’s top-ranked team. Kentucky completed that season with a 26-2 record, losing to Artis Gilmore and Jacksonville in a memorable regional final, 106-100. Pratt is a member of UK’s prestigious 1,000-point club, ranking 21st with 1,359 points in his three-year career.

After Kentucky, Pratt played two seasons for the ABA’s Kentucky Colonels before joining Lee Rose’s staff at UNC Charlotte. He spent three years there as an assistant, helping coach the 49ers to the 1977 Final Four. He replaced Rose in 1978 and spent four seasons as the head coach, compiling a 56-52 record. He was an NBA scout for five years, working for Cleveland, Milwaukee and the expansion Charlotte Hornets. In 1989, he moved to the Hornets’ bench as an assistant coach for Gene Littles, coaching Charlotte’s top draft pick, UK All-American Rex Chapman.

Pratt, 53, now resides in the Louisville area and works in private business.


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