Kentucky baseball, basketball player Ben Jordan dies at 22 years old

Jason Owens
·2 min read
Kentucky Wildcats guard Tyrese Maxey (3) forward Keion Brooks (12) and forward Ben Jordan (33) celebrate at the end of the game against the Eastern Kentucky Colonels at Rupp Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark Zerof-USA TODAY Sports
Ben Jordan, left, died at 22 years old. (Mark Zerof/Reuters)

Ben Jordan, a Kentucky baseball player who walked on the men’s basketball team last season, died. He was 22 years old.

The school announced the news Tuesday.

A cause of death was not disclosed.

Jordan was a right-handed pitcher for the school’s baseball team. A 6-foot-9, 250-pound athlete who was also a standout basketball player at West Carter High School (Ky.), Jordan walked onto Kentucky’s basketball team last season when it was shorthanded.

He made two brief appearances in games while primarily working to help develop post players in practice. Head coach John Calipari spoke fondly of Jordan in comments released in the school’s announcement.

“Our hearts are broken today," Calipari said, per the statement. “It is difficult for me to express and to put into words what a tragedy it is to lose a young person too early. Ben impacted our team last season in so many ways with his kind heart, his big smile and his wonderful personality.

“He cared so deeply about this place and it meant so much to him to be a part of this team. We are grieving today over the loss of a teammate and a brother, but Ben will not be forgotten.”

Baseball coach Nick Mingione expressed “shock and heartache” over Jordan’s death.

“There are no words to express the shock and heartache our team is feeling with the loss of Ben,” Mingione said per the statement. “He was an absolute joy to coach and be around. ... We are all hurting and will find a way carry Ben’s legacy forward and keep him in our heart always.”

Jordan was also a standout student, making the SEC spring sports Academic Honor Roll in 2020.

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