Former Cav Mel Turpin commits suicide
Lexington, Kentucky -- Mel Turpin, a Cleveland Cavaliers center for three seasons after becoming an All-American at the University of Kentucky, committed suicide Thursday, authorities said. He was 49.
Police and the coroner were called to his North Lexington house Thursday afternoon on a personal injury call. They found Turpin dead.
Coroner Gary Ginn says that Turpin had committed suicide, but would not say how. He also would not say whether Turpin left behind a suicide note.
Neighbor Amanda McFadden said Turpin always seemed happy.
"He never looked upset. He kept a smile on his face, just a good person," she said.
The Washington Bullets selected Turpin with the sixth overall pick in the 1984 draft, then sent him to the Cavaliers the same day in a pre-arranged trade. That draft included Michael Jordan, Hakeem Olajuwon, John Stockton and Charles Barkley.
The 6-11 Turpin averaged 10.6 points, shooting 51 percent from the field, and 5.7 rebounds as a rookie for the 1984-85 Cavaliers team that made the playoffs after a 2-19 start to their season.
The next season, Turpin averaged 13.7 points and seven rebounds, shooting 54 percent.
Turpin lost his starting job with the Cavaliers after they took Brad Daugherty with the first pick in the 1986 draft. Turpin came off the bench to average 6.1 points and three rebounds for the 86-87 Cavs, then was traded to the Utah Jazz during the off-season. His career ended after one season with Utah and one with Washington.
Turpin, dubbed "The Big Dipper" at Kentucky -- and later "Dinner Bell Mel" for his appetite -- was an All-Southeastern Conference player for the Wildcats from 1980-84. He led Kentucky to the SEC championship in 1984.
Turpin helped lead the Wildcats to three consecutive regular-season SEC titles. He averaged a career-high 15.2 points per game in 1983-84 and shot 74.5 percent from the field.
Didnt see it posted elsewhere in here, so i figured I would go ahead and do so.. Apparently it was buried in the news with all the Lebron-sweepstakes