Reggie Hanson, a member of Kentucky's prestigious 1,000-point club, is in his fourth season as an assistant coach at Kentucky. His duties at his alma mater include off-campus recruiting and on-court instruction.
Hanson, 35, spent eight years playing professional basketball. After graduating from UK in 1991 with a bachelor's degree in education, the Somerset, Ky., native played one season for the Louisville Shooters of the Global League before spending seven years playing professionally in Japan. The final six years, he was both a player and assistant coach. He spent the last two months of the 1998 season playing in the NBA for the Boston Celtics.
In 1995, Hanson was the Japan Basketball League's leading scorer, rebounder and shot blocker. In 1996, he led the JBL in scoring and steals and was named Defensive Player of the Year. During his JBL career - which was scheduled to continue prior to his accepting the coaching position at UK in 2000 - Hanson averaged 20.6 points and 8.7 rebounds per game, shooting 51.2 percent from the field, 84.1 percent from the foul line and 36 percent from the three-point line.
But it was at Kentucky where Hanson endeared himself to the Wildcat faithful. During his sophomore season, the program was rocked by an NCAA investigation. Mass defections and a coaching change occurred as a two-year penalty was imposed on the men's basketball team. That resulted in no television exposure for one season and no postseason play for two years. Hanson, with just two years of eligibility remaining, chose to stay and play for new coach Rick Pitino and his assistant, Tubby Smith.
In his senior season, Hanson guided the '91 Wildcats to the best record (22-6) in the Southeastern Conference, though UK was not eligible for the league title. As team captain that year, he and John Pelphrey led the Cats in scoring, averaging 14.4 ppg. He tallied 16.4 ppg in 1990. Entering the 2003 season, he ranked 36th on the all-time scoring list at UK with 1,167 points. At 6-7, Hanson lettered all four years - playing center his last two seasons - and led the team in field goals made (1990), rebounding (1990, '91), blocks (1990, '91) and steals (1989, '90).
Hanson's dedication to the program led Pitino to rename the team's sacrifice award -- the Reggie Hanson Sacrifice Award. He also was named All-SEC as both a junior and senior and earned numerous team awards including MVP and the Leadership Award his last two seasons.
Hanson and his wife Lynelle reside in Lexington with daughters Sakia (14) and Jaitesha (8).
Coaching and Playing Career
*JBL Career Averages: