Isaiah Briscoe is returning to Kentucky and it’s kind of a big deal.
The slashing swingman was a fantastic defender as a freshman and an elite scorer at the rim. But (luckily) it wasn’t his time to head to the NBA. Needing another year to work on his shot, he’ll be back in blue next year. The Sporting News ranked it as the tenth-most impactful return to school in all of college basketball.
A team that will be rich in young talent can certainly benefit from the toughness and competitive fire Briscoe delivers in pretty much every game he enters. He’ll be pushed hard for playing time by freshmen De’Aaron Fox and Malik Monk – that is, if they don’t all start together; and there will be some question about whether to deploy Briscoe or Fox as the team’s primary point guard.
All that will be worked out, and there’s no one better at figuring out his team on the fly than coach John Calipari. But if Briscoe is to make a greater impact than those ahead of him on this list, he’ll have to improve as a shooter from percentages of 43.9 (field), 13.5 (3-point) and 46 (free throw).
TSN’s Top Five Returners: Nigel Hayes to Wisconsin, Justin Jackson to UNC, Dillon Brooks to Oregon, Josh Hart to Villanova and Grayson Allen to Duke.