For Kentucky to be a special team in March, college basketball analysts seem to agree that Kevin Knox Jr. has to be a special player like he was when he scored 20 points in UK’s loss to Kansas in the Champions Classic.
“Kentucky has a lot of good players, but I am not sure they have a great player. Kevin Knox could be. I watched him at the USA Basketball Trials in June, and he can get anywhere with the ball,” Sporting News columnist Mike DeCourcy said. “But is he a great player and can he finish plays? He has to prove that to me. If he makes shot he gets to, he will be a star.”
Former Indiana coach Tom Crean, an ESPN analyst now, says Knox has to be consistently good.
“He can be an inside-outside type of guy. He’s got to be a guy that is going to be a mainstay on their team defensively as they go into what John (Calipari) is doing, but very much being able to make plays and get a confidence level hopefully early for that team for them to continue to understand that they can play through those guys,” Crean said.
Another ESPN analyst, Jay Bilas, believes Knox will be the team’s leading scorer.
“John will want him to drive it and to get to the free-throw line and to make those type of plays, but he’s also got to be a rebounder. He’s capable of rebounding, and he’s going to have to rebound on both ends and run the floor and defend at a really high level without fouling for them to be as good as they want to be,” Bilas said.