By LARRY VAUGHT
Kentucky sophomore Rhyne Howard not only was UK’s leading scorer last year but she was also the consensus national freshman of the year. Kentucky sophomore Ashton Hagans was a starter for coach John Calipari as a freshman and the co-SEC Defensive Player of the Year.
At the UK Women’s Basketball Media Day, I asked Howard if Hagans could guard her and keep her from scoring.
“I would just have an arm bar up because I know he is pretty active. I wouldn’t try to do anything fancy,” Howard said. “I would be able to score on him … easily. Just keep it simple.”
“Yes,” Howard said before adding there was not anyone she didn’t think she could score on.
Junior teammate KeKe McKinney said she was backing Howard “100 percent” in this matchup.
“No. He cannot guard Rhyne,” McKinney said.
Point guard Chasity Patterson, a Texas transfer, believes Howard could score on Hagan, too.
“She would definitely do that and give him a run for his money on anything else,” Patterson said.
But score easily on Hagans?
“I believe it. She could do it,” Patterson said.
McKinney also had no problem with picking Howard as the best basketball player on campus.
“Hands down she’s the best,” McKinney said.
“Yeah, I believe Rhyne is great and can compete against anybody, so yes I think she is the best player on campus,” Patterson said.