VAUGHT: Galloway misses his grandfather

Sometimes it's easy to forget that even big-time athletes have personal problems that could easily make games seem not nearly as important to them as they might under normal circumstances. That thought hit me Saturday as I listened to Kentucky junior Kevin Galloway explain his late defensive mistake that led to the open game-winning shot by LSU.

However, I also remembered that about 48 hours earlier Galloway had been in California attending his grandfather's funeral.

I wondered how he balanced the funeral and the game, so I asked him.

"It was a tough week for me. An awful lot of emotions to deal with. It was tough to come play today," he admitted. "It was a long week. I was dreading it (his possible death) all week and then having the funeral on Thursday made it tough a little more tougher. Coming back here was hard."

Galloway, who didn't play at South Carolina last week after his grandfather died, found out recently how ill his grandfather was.

They gave us a week to 30 days that he would live. They told me to expect no longer than a month. I tried to call and stay in touch with him and they said he wasn't doing too well. Later I found out he passed. It was tough to hear that even if you were kind of prepared for it,"

Galloway said. "I don't see my father that much, so my grandfather was kind of like my father. It was hard to say goodbye to him like that."

Yet he says he never thought about not playing against LSU, and he knew his grandfather would have wanted him to play.

"I think basketball is really like a good outlet for your emotions. We are out there playing and don't have to think about nothing like that. It was good therapy for me really to play," Galloway said. "Warming up was little tough because he's on your heart and mind. Once the ball went up, basketball is it. I just zone out. That's where I feel comfortable, but I miss him terribly and know I will for a long, long time."

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