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Former Wildcats warn GBB Country of Keion Brooks Jr.’s sophomore growth

The Kentucky basketball program lost 93 percent of its minutes, 94 percent of its points, and 98.6 percent of its assists from the 2019-20 roster, with the latter two being the most in the John Calipari era in Lexington.

The lone individual making each of those statistics a solid 100 percent? Keion Brooks Jr., the only player in Kentucky’s rotation returning from last season, with the rest leaving the program via graduation, transfer, and the NBA Draft.

While UK’s returning talent is limited (at best), three former teammates of Brooks told Shawn Smith of Go Big Blue Country that the 6-foot-9 forward out of Fort Wayne, IN is poised for a breakout season as a sophomore.

Nick Richards made it clear that Brooks wasn’t able to show off his complete game as a freshman, but promised that would change in year two.

“You’re about to see something different,” Richards told GBB Country. “Keion is actually a really talented player. He didn’t really get to show his entire game as a freshman, but I think this season, you will see a totally different side of him.”

As for Nate Sestina, he believes Brooks is set to have an “unbelievable” sophomore campaign.

“It really started to click for him at the end of the year, and he was dangerous,” Sestina added. “He was strong, confident, and in great shape. He’s an incredible athlete. He’s going to have an unbelievable sophomore season.”

While the praise was high from each of the other former Wildcats, Tyrese Maxey’s quote is the one that turns heads the most.

As excited as Kentucky fans should be for Brooks, Maxey believes UK’s upcoming opponents are the ones who need to keep a close eye on the Fort Wayne native.

“A player every team should be worried about,” Maxey told GBB Country.

In his first season in Lexington, Brooks Jr. averaged 4.5 points and 3.2 rebounds to go with 47.2% shooting overall in 15.1 minutes per game. To close out the year, though, the Fort Wayne, IN native finished with 10 points on 4-5 shooting and 2-2 from three in the regular-season finale at Florida, his fifth double-digit scoring performance of the year.

To see what all the former Wildcats had to say about Brooks, head to Go Big Blue Country here. 

While you’re at it, check out Brooks’ highlights from the 2019-20 season below:

Article written by Jack Pilgrim

Follow me on Twitter: @JackPilgrimKSR

3 Comments for Former Wildcats warn GBB Country of Keion Brooks Jr.’s sophomore growth

  1. UKgrad80
    10:25 pm July 18, 2020 Permalink

    Brooks was looking really sharp at the end of the year seeing big things for him this season!

  2. Megan
    12:37 pm July 19, 2020 Permalink

    I think we all feel Brooks can be special. But we shouldn’t let those expectations turn against us if it takes a little while to find his place at the start of the season. There’s been a big change in personnel, and change initially brings with it lower productivity. So please, let’s celebrate the good and reserve any criticism or disappointment for later in the season, when the team has had a chance to figure things out and gel. That’s asking the impossible of BBN — you know how we are — but I thought I’d go through the motions anyway.

  3. michaelb
    5:51 pm July 19, 2020 Permalink

    Great writing here . And yea this guy is gonna bring it pj Washington style this year . You heard it here . I like that little flick & splash three he started shooting at the end of the year