Sophomore forward Keion Brooks Jr. has been dealing with a minor calf injury that has kept him from being fully involved in practice lately. He currently is able to do individual drills, but the forward said in a press briefing today that he is still takes a step back when they do 5-on-5.
Even with the hesitation as UK’s season begins in one week, Brooks is however being patient with the process to ensure he fully recovers.
“It’s just a matter of when doctors are 100 percent comfortable with me getting back out there and competing at full speed,” he said.
Brooks has been penciled in as a starter for much of the preseason giving his energy and experience, but with the injury and increasing emergence of shot-blocking expert Isaiah Jackson, his spot has been considered to be interchangeable. The sophomore is not worried about losing his position on the team though, as he is confident in his own game giving him primetime minutes.
“I have no worries at all about being passed up by anybody. Not to say I don’t wish my teammates well, but I’m confident in my ability, confident in the work I put in, that when I do come back I’ll be ready to go,” he said.
Brooks’ veteran presence could be crucial for Kentucky, as he is the only returning player who has played real minutes in a UK uniform and one of three contributors with college basketball experience. From his words and tone in today’s press conference, there seems to be no worry about his ability to impact the game as the schedule starts next week.