There are plenty of new faces around the Kentucky Women’s Basketball Team this season, but only one of them will be on the court. Jada Walker is the only freshman joining this year’s team, but that doesn’t mean she can’t make a huge impact.
Coming out of high school ranked as the 18th best point guard in the country by ESPN.com, the expectations are high for Walker’s career as a ‘Cat. The 5-foot-7 point guard has dynamic scoring ability, but more importantly, she’s known for her extremely high basketball IQ.
Don’t believe me? Watch Walker put her basketball knowledge on display in the clip below.
Now that we’re all on the same page, let’s dive into Walker’s potential role for the Wildcats this upcoming season.
With Chasity Patterson gone, there’s no denying Kentucky is going to need new sources of scoring. Although Jazmine Massengill will be a solid replacement as the star point guard, she isn’t necessarily known for high-scoring affairs. On the other hand, Walker averaged nearly 27 points per game as a junior in high school.
Obviously, high school basketball is a different beast, but the message remains the same: Walker can get buckets. Kentucky doesn’t need Walker to put up crazy numbers, but they do need her to be an offensive spark-plug off the bench.
While it’s great to have surprises out of freshmen, perhaps the best part about Walker is her reliability. Everybody knows freshmen tend to struggle to adapt to the speed and pressures of college basketball. Then again, most freshmen don’t have the IQ of Walker.
Being a coach’s daughter, Walker will be coming into the season with a major advantage. She may be outsized and lacking experience, but she knows how to counter these issues with fundamental play. Her ability to avoid turning the ball over due to pressure will be just another reason to put her on the court.
ESPN.com put it plainly when listing Walker’s skills: “brings consistency, toughness to the back court; clock manager, basketball IQ.”
Music to BBN’s ears, but more importantly, Coach Elzy’s. Kentucky is undeniably deep with talent this season, but that doesn’t mean inconsistencies won’t strike; last season more than proved that. Nevertheless, with Walker at the ready, Coach Elzy should feel a little more confident in her team’s ability.