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James Crisp, Associated Press
Kentucky's Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, right, shoots over Samford's Jeffrey Merritt during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game in Lexington, Ky., Tuesday, Dec. 20, 2011. Kentucky won 82-50.

LEXINGTON, Ky. — Kentucky freshman Michael Kidd-Gilchrist has a habit of getting up early and working out on his own well before practice.

The early morning sessions caught the eye of coach John Calipari, who pushed the 6-foot-7 forward to find a way to get the rest of the third-ranked Wildcats involved by relating a story of Michael Jordan's breakfast club while with the NBA's Chicago Bulls.

Jordan and a handful of teammates began working out together with the NBA great's personal trainer before eating and heading to formal practice. The efforts paid off in the Bulls' decade of dominance. Kentucky hopes it will lead to an NCAA title this season.

Kidd-Gilchrist is running the group, saying he's learning to balance being a leader while realizing he's still a freshman with a lot to learn.