For the first time in John Calipari’s tenure at Kentucky his starting point guard will have some collegiate experience. Ryan Harrow is expected to take over as the new floor general in Coach Calipari’s dribble drive offense and hopes to lead the Wildcats to another national title. Harrow, a Georgia native, recently sat down with the Marietta Daily Journal to reflect on having to sit out this past year, watching his teammates win a national title, and his future with Kentucky Wildcats.
Ryan Harrow wasn’t on the floor of the Superdome in New Orleans when Kentucky defeated Kansas for the NCAA championship earlier this month, but the former Walton High School standout was in the building, and he did have a hand in helping the Wildcats claim their eighth national title. After transferring from North Carolina State before the season, Harrow sat out his sophomore season at Kentucky. However, he did participate fully in practices throughout the year, helping his teammates improve, and preparing them for the opposition they had to face.
For Harrow, being able to see his teammates celebrate on the court, surrounded by confetti, was just as exciting as if he had been on the floor as well. “I wasn’t able to go to the tournament games, but I went to the Final Four with my mom and saw the championship game,” Harrow said. “We left right after it was over to get to North Carolina, because she had to get back to work, but I was really happy for the team. I’m still excited. “I felt like I played a big part in getting the team the championship – competing with those guys every day in practice and supporting them at all the games I could go to. I was just happy and proud of them more than anything. It was like I was right there with them.”
After watching the 2011-12 Wildcats win a national championship Harrow couldn’t thinking about next year’s team doing the same thing. He knows that the final four would be in Atlanta and relishes the idea of playing in front of his home state in the biggest games of his life:
“I’m definitely excited to get the chance to lead the team to another championship, but this time in my hometown,” Harrow said. “The (Final Four) will be in Atlanta, and it would be great to play in front of friends and family. That would be big for me.”
In the meantime, Harrow will just have to be excited for his other big news. Even though he wasn’t on the floor for the national championship game, his contributions to the team’s success this season won’t go unnoticed. “I got sized up for my championship ring (April 9),” he said. “I don’t know what it will look like, but I can’t wait to get it.”
Harrow averaged 9.3 points, 3.3 assists, and 1.8 rebounds in his lone year at NC State. With a year of practice in Cal’s system and a talented recruiting class with him he should be able to expand on those numbers. Harrow will provide leadership, instant playmaking ability, and for the first time in a long time, an experienced floor general. Does that mean Back to Backs? We’ll see.