LEXINGTON, Ky. – The honors keep coming for University of Kentucky freshman guard Rhyne Howard, who on Wednesday was named to the Wooden Award Midseason Top 25 Watch List, making her one of the early front-runners for the John R. Wooden Award All American Team® and Most Outstanding Player Award.
The 25 players on the list are considered strong candidates for the 2019 John R. Wooden Award Women’s Player of the Year presented by Wendy’s. The National Ballot consists of 15 top players who have proven to their universities that they meet or exceed the qualifications of the Wooden Award. Voters will rank in order 10 of those 15 players when voting opens prior to the NCAA Tournament and will allow them to take into consideration performance during early round games. The Wooden Award All American Team will be announced the week of the Elite Eight round of the NCAA Tournament. The winner of the 2019 John R. Wooden Award will be presented by Wendy’s during the ESPN College Basketball Awards on Friday, April 12, 2019.
Howard, who is the only freshman to make the midseason top 25, is leading No. 16 Kentucky in scoring and rebounding this season while ranking second on the team in assists, steals, blocks and 3-pointers made. The native of Cleveland, Tenn., is averaging 17.4 points and 7.0 rebounds per game with 45 assists, 38 steals, 18 blocks and 38 3s made. She ranks
The guard has scored 10 or more points in 14 of her 16 games played, including 15 or more points in 11 games and 20 or more points in five games. Howard has three double-doubles on the season and has led UK in rebounds and scoring eight times, assists and steals three times and blocks six times. Her best game of the season came against Southern when she hit seven 3s and scored 29 points.
Howard has been named the Southeastern Conference Freshman of the Week a school-record five times this season while she was tabbed the USBWA National Freshman of the Week on Dec. 26. She was also named the MVP of the 2018 Paradise Jam Island Division after scoring a combined 63 points in three games during the event.