LEXINGTON, Ky. – Another day, another honor for 2018 University of Kentucky women’s basketball signee Rhyne Howard, who was named the 2017-18 Gatorade Player of the Year for basketball in the state of Tennessee after her incredible senior year on the hardwood.
The Gatorade State Player of the Year award was established in 1985 to recognize the nation’s most outstanding high school student-athletes for their athletic excellence, academic achievement and exemplary character. The honor for Howard joins a list of accolades this season. On top of her Tennessee Miss Basketball honor, she was recently tabbed one of 24 players to the 2018 Jordan Brand Classic game. Earlier this season she was named a McDonald’s All-America Game nominee and was on the Naismith Trophy Preseason and Midseason Watch Lists. Howard along with Blair Green make up UK’s 2018 signing class, which ranks No. 18 in the nation according to All Star Girls Report.
Howard paced Bradley Central High School to over 30 wins this season, including an appearance in the Class AAA State Tournament. The Bears won one game at the state tournament with Howard scoring 12 points with 12 rebounds adding five assists. Howard was brilliant in leading the Bears to the state tournament, scoring 41 points on 16-of-25 shooting in the District 5-AAA championship before scoring 32 points on 14-of-17 shooting with six steals, five assists, four rebounds and two blocks in the Region 1-AAA quarterfinal. She helped the Bears clinch the sectional championship with 27 points and 15 rebounds for her 11th double-double of the season.
Ranked as the eighth best player overall in the 2018 class according to All-Star Girls Report, Howard is having a great senior season at Bradley Central. The athletic combo guard is averaging 22.2 points per game, 7.7 rebounds per game, 5.3 steals per game and 4.1 assists per game. Howard is shooting 54 percent from the field this season and has scored 733 points. The native of Cleveland, Tenn., averaged 19.6 points per game, 7.2 rebounds per game, 4.6 steals per game, 3.8 assists per game and 1.2 blocks per game as a junior. She scored 647 points last year for the Bears, hitting 55 percent from the field and 40 percent from 3. For her efforts, she was named the 2017 TSSAA Class AAA Miss Basketball runner up, was a unanimous District 5 AAA Player of the Year and a Tennessee Sports Writer’s Association All-State honoree.