Terrence Clarke, a freshman guard for Kentucky this past season, died following a car accident in Los Angeles on Thursday afternoon. Klutch Sports CEO Rich Paul confirmed Clarke’s death in a statement provided to ESPN.
Police told WKYT in Lexington, Kentucky, that Clarke, 19, was taken to Northridge Hospital where he was pronounced dead. Clarke’s mother was at his side when he died, according to ESPN.
“We are saddened and devastated by the tragic loss of Terrence Clarke,” Paul said in his statement. “Terrence was an incredible, hard-working young man. He was excited for what was ahead of him and ready to fulfill his dreams. Our prayers go out to Terrence and his family, who ask for privacy during this difficult time.”
— Klutch Sports Group (@KlutchSports) April 23, 2021
Clarke announced last month that he was entering this year’s NBA draft and he had signed with Klutch Sports.
WKYT in Lexington reported that Clarke was working out with former Kentucky teammate and Sierra Canyon High standout BJ Boston, who also recently signed with Klutch, before the crash.
LAPD told WKYT that Clarke was traveling at a high rate of speed when he ran a red light, hit another car turning left, and continued on to then hit a pole and block wall at 2:10 p.m. on Winnetka Avenue.
Police told WKYT that Clarke, who was the only person in the car, was not wearing his seatbelt properly. Boston was reportedly in a car behind Clarke.
“I am absolutely gutted and sick tonight,” Kentucky head coach John Calipari told WKYT. “A young person who we all love has just lost his life too soon, one with all of his dreams and hopes ahead of him. Terrence Clarke was a beautiful kid, someone who owned the room with his personality, smile and joy. People gravitated to him, and to hear we have lost him is just hard for all of us to comprehend right now. We are all in shock.”
This past season, Clarke played in the first seven games for Kentucky but was sidelined with an ankle injury that kept him out until the season finale against South Carolina. He finished the season averaging 9.6 points and scored a career-high 22 in a loss to Georgia Tech.
“As an adolescent, having the privilege to put on the Kentucky uniform and play in front of the BBN was always a lifelong goal of mine,” Clarke said in a statement on social media last month. “Although it was hindered due to things out of my own control, the experience is something I will keep with me forever. I have grown a lot with this experience and I will never take it for granted.”
A former five-star prospect from Boston, Clarke was a projected lottery pick before the season.
Clarke is survived by his parents, Osmine Clarke and Adrian Briggs, and his three siblings, Tatyana Gray, Gavin Clarke and Madison Adrianne.
CONFIRMED: Brandon Boston Jr. is OK. Sierra Canyon basketball assistant confirms Boston is OK.
Boston was reportedly driving behind Terrence Clarke when Clarke was involved in a deadly accident.
— Tarek Fattal (@Tarek_Fattal) April 23, 2021