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Sports World Praying For Kentucky Basketball Family Today

A closeup of a Nike basketball with Kentucky's logo on it.

LEXINGTON, KY - NOVEMBER 09: A basketball with a Kentucky Wildcats logo sits on the floor during the game against the Georgetown College Tigers at Rupp Arena on November 9, 2014 in Lexington, Kentucky. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

The Kentucky basketball family lost a Wildcats mainstay on Wednesday.

In a statement from John Calipari, the UK coach confirmed the loss of trainer Chris Simmons, whom he had a long-running relationship with:

"Chris Simmons, our trainer at Memphis who came w/ me here, passed away," Coach Cal tweeted. "He was old-school & would sleep in the dorm if it helped kids get ready to play. Never babied them but always protected. I loved him like a brother and appreciate everything he did for my family. RIP, Chris."

The sports world sent prayers the University of Kentucky's way across social media.

"RIP CHIEF," tweeted Arkansas forward Kamani Johnson. "Hurt me with this one."

"One of The Best Guys I’ve met in This Business," another replied.

"Damn man.. Chris was a solid dude every time I seen him always giving me s--- and sharing a laugh about something," another commented. "RIP."

"Developed a relationship with Chris after we drafted Tyreke and the Kentucky players that followed," said G-League trainer Pete Youngman. "A wonderful guy with a great sense of humor. Our conversations were always real and honest. My condolences and prayers to his family & friends. Rest in Peace my friend."

A tough loss for college basketball.