UK star Rhyne Howard continues to rack up a big amount of preseason recognition. The most recent — SEC coaches tabbed her as SEC Preseason Player of the Year. She also was named to the Preseason All-SEC First Team as she is figured to have an enormous impact on the court.
This recognition is not uncommon for Howard, as she was named 2019 SEC Player of the Year after leading the Cats and ranking second nationally with 23.4 points per game, which is the most ever by a player coached under Matthew Mitchell and fourth-most in school history. She also was the first player in school history to have five straight games with 25+ points and eight straight outings with 20+ points last season.
The junior guard also led UK with 6.5 rebounds per game and 62 steals, while ranking second on the team 29 blocks and third on the squad with 68 assists. In other words, she will be must-watch television once again as a commander on the court for a Kentucky team with plenty of talent.
As for the squad as a whole, they were picked to finish second in the league behind South Carolina by SEC coaches, and 11th nationally by AP voters. Along with Howard, they return flashy guard Chasity Patterson and the team’s leading shot-blocker Keke McKinney as well as adding the No. 29 nationally ranked recruit Treasure Hunt and a few transfers to round out the roster, all combining to give them maybe their best shot at a Final Four yet.