We’ve seen many sides of Ryan Harrow since he came to Kentucky.
After sitting out a year and learning Calipari’s system, many expected him to burst on the scene with a steady veteran hand. Unfortunately, the glare of the spotlight seemed a little too bright for Harrow, who struggled under Cal’s criticism early on and had to take a mysterious break from the team to regroup. Once he was back, he turned in promising performances against Marshall and Louisville, and just as we were ready to accept that he had turned the corner, he disappeared again in mid-February, going scoreless in UK’s losses to Florida and Tennessee. The loss to Tennessee has proved to be this team’s “Come to Jesus” moment, with the team holding a team meeting during which they asked Harrow to step up. Harrow agreed, and in the three games since, has scored 47 points off 18-32 shooting, grabbed 20 rebounds and 14 assists, all while only committing three turnovers. Not too shabby for a player many had written off, right?
When he wasn’t being salty about his own team’s luck, Mississippi State coach Rick Ray praised Harrow’s evolution, from the time he was at NC State. Ray mentioned Harrow’s anxiety issues while with the Wolfpack and how he’s finally seeming to move past them:
“I actually had a chance to play against Ryan Harrow when he played at North Carolina State when he was a freshman and I was still at Clemson. He has really evolved as a basketball player. I know that when we were at Clemson, he struggled against our pressure at times, like most kids do as a freshman. You can tell he is maturing and trying to figure things out. I think he is a good basketball player and I think he just kind of had to find his way with all the scoring and all the different opportunities you have here at Kentucky to get the ball to different people.
The Cats cannot afford another disappearing act from Harrow in order to stay in the postseason hunt. While Kentucky’s new “open offense” has certainly played a part in Ryan’s resurgence, his budding confidence and improved attitude help more than anything. Are we done with “Cool Ryan” for the reason of the season?
Enjoy his comments from after last night’s win: