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4 Dusty Mills

Dusty Mills
Hometown (Last School)
Noblesville, IN (High)
October 21, 1988

Dusty Mills was born Dustin Brock Mills on October 21, 1988, to Bryan and Cathie Mills.  He has three brothers, Brandon, Jake and Nick.

Mills was a two-year letterwinner at Noblesville High School in Indiana.  His team posted a 20-3 record as a senior as he averaged 2.2 points and 2.0 assists per game.

After averaging just two points as a senior at Noblesville, Mills became of the most improbable stories in college basketball. He came to the University of Kentucky as an accounting student and made it through a tryout with 23 others to become a walk-on for the nation’s winningest program. 

“I’m living a dream,” he said. “I came here with no intention to play basketball. I didn’t even start for my high school team. But I gave it a try, and they asked me to come back. I’m on a day-to-day contract, but it’s really a dream come true.”

UK coach Billy Gillispie liked having several walk-ons and said players such as Mills are vital. Mark Krebs, Dwight Perry, Matt Scherbenske, Mark Coury and former Pleasure Ridge Park star Kerry Benson are the other nonscholarship players on the roster.  “Everyone on a team should be able to help you win,” Gillispie said. “You have to bring something to the table that gives yourself an opportunity to help your team win. I do think that Dusty has something. I don’t know exactly what it is yet. It’s not height, I can promise you that. But he plays at a high intensity.”

Noblesville coach Dave McCollough called Mills a “spark plug” and the Millers’ defensive stopper, but he said no college teams were interested in him.  Mills, who grew up a Florida fan, wanted to go to school in Gainesville but wasn’t accepted. He came to UK because of his family’s ties to Kentucky. His grandfather, Bobby, is a Maysville native and played baseball at Eastern Kentucky University. His brother, Brandon, is a student at UK. 

“He’s living a dream that every male in the family has always wanted, including his grandpa,” Bobby Mills told “The Indianapolis Star.  Dusty Mills told McCollough last spring that he wanted to walk on, but the player thought it was a pipe dream.  Mills said he called UK’s basketball office to inquire about walking on but never got a return call.  Then Mills saw an advertisement in the student newspaper for an open walk-on tryout. He ended up being the only player out of 24 to be invited back for a second practice. After that one, he was sent to the compliance office to fill out the paperwork to become a member of the squad.

“My dad told me I had nothing to lose,” Mills said. “I guess I stood out. I knew it wasn’t my ability. I guess more my hustle. Always as a little kid, everyone says they want to play Division I basketball. I never thought I would, but I’m here now.”

The news of Mills’ achievement spread quickly to Noblesville, which is just north of Indianapolis. He had two newspaper articles written about him back home, and he said, “My entire city has fallen in love with me.”

On February 13, 2008, Gillispie dismissed Mills from the team in part for laughing at inopportune times.  The TV broadcast of UK’s win at Georgia showed Mills laughing during a timeout when Ramel Bradley was injured after a hard fall. He also appeared to be laughing at one point during the Wildcats’ 41-point loss the previous week at Vanderbilt.

Mills made four appearances for UK and handed out two assists.

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Career Totals



dusty mills

dusty mills

dusty mills

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