By LARRY VAUGHT
Isaac Humphries has said for two months that he’s a better player this year now than he was as a freshman. He lost weight, got quicker and worked on his overall game.
Against Stephen F. Austin Friday, he looked a lot, lot better. He had 8 points, 9 rebounds, 3 blocked shots, 3 steals and 1 assist in 19 minutes of play in the 87-64 win.
“With these guards, I don’t need you to drive the ball, I need you to finish. What I would say to you with — again, he’s in better shape than he’s ever been in his life, he’s bouncy, he now can guard pick and roll better,” Kentucky coach John Calipari said..
“He’s in the post, he can continue to move his feet. He has better discipline than Sacha and Bam because he’s older. But again, that discipline defensively, we, it will, it’s going to hurt us as we go forward, but it is what it is. I talked to the staff, I mean, it’s going to be a process, I can get on them to hold them accountable, but the reality of it is they’re 17 and 18 year olds.
“And you got Isaac who is an 18-year-old sophomore and you got Isaiah Briscoe who is a sophomore. You got all young kids. These guys, they, I love the fact that they were not, they were like, man, no way, we’re not, you’re not doing this to us.”
Humphries was not available to the media after Friday’s game. However, he did talk to the media on Thursday.
“I think that we’ve obviously got a good group of bigs this year. Fighting every day is really important in that rotation,” Humphries said. “For me, I think I’m fighting every day against everyone. I understand that minutes are not given and you have to fight for it. It’s not really clear.
“We’ve only played two games and those two games we were just rotating trying to find a good group. I don’t really have much of a look on that yet, but I feel after this weekend we’ll know a little bit more about how that’s going to work.”
Well, after Friday we know this — Humphries is a lot, lot better this year.