Former UK star Julius Randle meets kids in Florence

Randle shot hoops with some of the kids. (FOX19 Joe Danneman)
Randle shot hoops with some of the kids. (FOX19 Joe Danneman)

FLORENCE, KY (FOX19) - By Brett Bibbins

The second round of the 2014 Kroger John Calipari ProCamp took place in Florence, Kentucky this week with former Kentucky Wildcat, and current Los Angeles Laker Julius Randle being the featured pro for the final day of camp.

Calipari's annual basketball camp was held at Sports of All Sorts in Florence on July 28 and 29 and was open to both boys and girls, grades kindergarten through seven.

Volunteering to help run these camps is something Julius Randle feels is a way to give back to a program and coach that have done so much for him over the past year.

"First of all, Lexington is just a very special place to me and Coach has done a lot for me.  He really took care of me this year and watched over me," Randle said.  "To give a little bit of my time to come back to a place that's special to me anyway, was a no brainer, and I'd do it anytime for him."

Randle knows that camps like these are a great way to make memories for the campers and are a way to give them an opportunity that he never had the chance to have.

"Not too long ago, I was in their position and I never really had this opportunity as a kid, but to be able to give back to them and to be able to give them memories, that's what matters to me."

While hard work may be in the near future for Randle in his rookie season for the Los Angeles Lakers, today's camp was more about the fun rather than the work.

"I really just try to have fun with them.  I told them if they had any questions just to ask me, but I'm just really trying to have fun with them.  I want to make sure they have memories here that will last a lifetime."

Despite this short amount of time off to volunteer at the camp, Randle will be hard at work preparing for his next set of challenges that come with being an NBA player; however, the 6-foot-9, 250-pound power forward has become no stranger to hard work due to his one season at UK.

"You can't prepare for it," Randle said about life as a UK basketball player. "I thought I was as prepared as I could be, and I probably was, but you can't prepare for it until you're in the fire."

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