Mike Pratt’s celebration of life held at Memorial Coliseum

Big Blue Nation honored a legend on Friday.
Published: Aug. 5, 2022 at 5:20 PM EDT
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - Big Blue Nation honored a legend on Friday.

On June 16, longtime UK basketball radio analyst and former Wildcat star Mike Pratt died. Friday at Memorial Coliseum, where he played from 1967-1970, a celebration of life for Pratt was held.

It was an emotional service, with a few hundred in attendance to honor Pratt. UK men’s basketball head coach John Calipari, former teammates, fans, friends and family told stories of the Wildcat hero. Pratt spent the last 20 years with Tom Leach as 1/3 of the broadcast team with producer Jim Barnhart. As a Wildcat, Pratt was a fierce competitor and is fondly remembered as a friend and a man of Kentucky.

“We lost one of the greatest ambassadors this program has ever known,” Calipari said. “Mike Pratt loved the University of Kentucky from the moment he stepped on this campus in 1966. He spent a lifetime giving himself to the betterment of this program and inspiring others to love this game and this program as much as he did. He bled blue through and through.”

Friday’s celebration of life comes one day after what would have been Pratt’s 74th birthday.

“We all know what a great teammate Mike was, what a great friend he was. He truly lived his life by the golden rule. He treated everybody the way that he wanted to be treated and he always had time for everybody,” said former UK forward Dan Issel.

This calendar year we’ve lost three former Wildcats who greatly impacted the UK basketball program in a variety of ways. Joe B. Hall died January 15, Reggie Warford on May 26 and Pratt on June 16.

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