Former UK Player, NBA Draft Prospect Terrence Clarke Dies After Car Crash

By Anna Gallegos

April 23, 2021

A former Kentucky guard who was preparing for a pro career died Thursday night in Los Angeles.

Terrence Clarke was the only person in the car when he ran a red light while trying to make a right turn, ESPN reported. His vehicle hit another car turning at the intersection before hitting a pole and then a wall. He was taken to a local hospital where he died, Los Angeles authorities said.

Clarke was only 19 and finished playing his freshman season at Kentucky. He left an impact on his teammates, college basketball, and NBA players anticipating him joining the league. Many were heartbroken at the news of his passing.

“I am absolutely gutted and sick tonight,” Kentucky head coach John Calipari said statement. “A young person who we all love has just lost his life too soon, one with all of his dreams and hopes ahead of him. Terrence Clarke was a beautiful kid, someone who owned the room with his personality, smile and joy. People gravitated to him, and to hear we have lost him is just hard for all of us to comprehend right now. We are all in shock.

“Terrence’s teammates and brothers loved him and are absolutely devastated. They know we are here for them for whatever they need."

Boston Celtics coach Brad Stevens was unable to continue a post-game press conference on Thursday after learning about Clarke's death.

Clarke was a Boston native but committed to Kentucky in 2019 because playing for the Wildcats "was always a lifelong goal of mine," he said at the time according to the Lexington Herald Leader.

He played eight games for Kentucky during his freshman season that was cut short by injuries. He averaged 9.6 points and 2.6 rebounds in 28.5 minutes per game during his college career.

Clarke entered his name into the NBA Draft last month and was training in Los Angeles at the time of his death.

Photo: Getty Images

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