Men's Basketball
Lamont Butler, the Mountain West DPOY, Joins UK Men’s Basketball

Lamont Butler, the Mountain West DPOY, Joins UK Men’s Basketball

LEXINGTON, Ky. – Lamont Butler, who hit the game-winning buzzer-beater shot for San Diego State in the 2023 Final Four, has joined the Kentucky men’s basketball team for the 2024-25 season, head coach Mark Pope announced Saturday.

Butler is the reigning two-time Mountain West Defensive Player of the Year and has averaged 7.7 points, 2.3 rebounds and 1.4 steals per game in 131 games played for the Aztecs. San Diego State was 104-32 and captured a pair of Mountain West regular-season and two tournament titles with Butler on the roster. Butler will have one season of eligibility remaining.

“Lamont Butler is the definition of a winner,” Pope said. “He might be the best perimeter defensive player in all of college basketball. Lamont has helped lead championship teams for the last four years and hit one of the most epic shots in the NCAA Tournament to send his team to the championship game.

“He is an elite student who takes his academics seriously. He cares about the community and will embrace the power of wearing ‘Kentucky’ across the front of his chest. I’m extremely excited to coach Lamont and to see the influence he’s going to have on this team.”

During his senior season, Butler averaged a career-high 9.3 points per game, while shooting a career-best 48.5% from the field. He also induced 1.5 steals per game. He generated 17 double-figure scoring efforts, including a 23-point performance against Wyoming. Butler had four or more steals in five games, including four against UAB in the NCAA Tournament’s opening round. He started all 37 games and averaged 27.5 minutes per outing.

Butler drained the most memorable shot in San Diego State history when he sank a buzzer beater in the 2023 Final Four against Florida Atlantic to send the Aztecs to the title game as a junior. He was a member of the 2023 NCAA All-Tournament Team and a member of the All-South Regional Team. Butler also garnered Mountain West Defensive Player of the Year accolades. The Moreno Valley, California, native averaged 8.8 points and 2.7 boards per game. He also contributed 126 assists and 57 steals. In addition to the buzzer beater in the Final Four, he also had one in a win over New Mexico in February of the same year.

As a sophomore, Butler started 25 of 27 games and averaged 7.3 points and 2.1 rebounds per game. He was a member of the Paycom Wooden Legacy All-Tournament Team after averaging 12.5 points, 2.5 rebounds, 2.0 assists and 2.0 steals per game in the two-game tournament. Butler started a pair of games in 28 appearances as a freshman and was the only first-year player on the squad to make an appearance in every game.

For his career, Butler has scored 1,008 career points and snared 305 boards. He has added 338 assists and 183 steals. The 6-foot-2 guard, known for his defensive prowess, has recorded 43 double-figure scoring efforts, dished out five or more assists 17 times and logged 22 games with at least three steals.

Butler graduated from Riverside Poly High School where he was a four-year letterwinner and a four-star prospect. He was tabbed as one of the top-50 points guards by ESPN in the class of 2020. During his prep career, he compiled 91 wins culminating in a conference championship as a senior. He was tabbed as the Ivy League Most Valuable Player for his efforts. Furthermore, Butler passed NBA Hall of Famer Reggie Miller as Poly’s all-time leading scorer with more than 1,800 career points.

For the latest on the Kentucky men’s basketball team, follow @KentuckyMBB on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and TikTok, and on the web at

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