By LARRY VAUGHT
After he played just seven minutes in the first half after getting in early foul trouble for the second straight game, PJ Washington got his game going again in the second half of Tuesday’s 80-76 win at Mississippi.
Washington didn’t score the first half but came back with 13 points in the second half, including 11 of UK’s 13 points in one stretch that helped turn the game in Kentucky’s favor.
During the second half, ESPN sideline reporter Laura Rutledge said UK coach John Calipari told his players he wanted “everything to go through PJ” because UK could not guard him.
Calipari said after the game that getting the ball to Washington on the high post was a halftime adjustment against Ole Miss’ zone defense. The plan was to let him create and Calipari said he “made all the right plays” during the second half.
“PJ in the second half, that is who you are. I know you don’t want to be that guy because it is hard to have that toughness and energy, but that’s who he is,” Calipari said. “I told him that is who he is and there is no reason for him not to play that way every single game.”
Ole Miss coach Kermit Davis said he told his players preparing for the game that Washington was a player “they need to watch and try to be like” because of how he plays.
Davis also said UK simply won the game.
“We had great energy,” Davis said. “I thought our team played the entire game. Kentucky is just good.”