Derek Anderson talks about visit with injured Nerlens Noel

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - Injured UK Basketball star Nerlens Noel is receiving some encouragement from a former UK star who once faced the same thing.

During a game in 1997, Derek Anderson also suffered a season-ending ACL tear.

The pictures of Anderson's visit with Noel on Wednesday have been making their way around social media.

"We spoke about an hour and he's in great spirits," says Anderson. "The hard part is coming and the fact that you can't run and jump like you have your whole life affects your mental capacity and I just wanted to be there for him for that."

Anderson spent much of his time at Kentucky going through rehab from the ACL injury. He knows it takes time to get back on the court.

"Everybody heals differently. I just worked and worked and worked. That's all I know to do and he'll be fine."

Anderson says Noel is in great sprits. Coach Cal has said the same. Both say the future is very bright for the young player, but not without a considerable amount of work.

"No lapses, feeling sorry for yourself, you've gotta work hard," Anderson says. "When he starts rehab I'll be there. He's just got to get his mind right and get him on the path to get his career back on track."

Anderson was on the 1996 UK championship team and the 1997 runner-up team. He graduated with a degree in pharmacy. He was also a member of the 2006 NBA champion Miami Heat team.

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