Kentucky Basketball: Ty-rific Washington garners fourth straight Freshman of the Week honors joining elite company

Kentucky Wildcats guard TyTy Washington Jr. (Credit: Jordan Prather-USA TODAY Sports)
Kentucky Wildcats guard TyTy Washington Jr. (Credit: Jordan Prather-USA TODAY Sports) /

To say Kentucky basketball super freshman TyTy Washington has been anything less than spectacular and vital to the Wildcat’s success over the past month would be an understatement. As evidence of this, he was recognized with his fourth straight SEC Freshman of the Week honor on Monday.

The 6-foot-3, 197-pound freshman from Phoenix, Arizona has come to life and found his comfort zone and identity leading the Wildcats to a 6-1 record over the past four weeks. He also won the award on November 22 after three straight UK wins.

Washington becomes the first player in the SEC to claim at least a share of the honor in four straight weeks since former Cat Devin Booker won the award four straight times during the 2014-15 season.

Kentucky basketball super frosh Washington joins elite Cats with honor

Booker and now Washington is the last players to achieve the feat five times in one season.

However, that’s not all the elite Wildcat company Washington joins because John Wall (2009-10) and Nerlens Noel (2012-13) also claimed the illustrious honor in four consecutive weeks.

Washington this week and two weeks ago shared the frosh award with Auburn star Jabari Smith.

Smith, averaged 20 points for Auburn in wins this past week at Alabama and Ole Miss. He has led the Tigers to a 16-1 record and a 5-0 start in the SEC averaging 16.1 points per game and 6.2 rebounds and .437 percent from the three.

Washington however elevated Kentucky to impressive wins at Vanderbilt and Tennessee at home. He led Big Blue averaging 21.5 points per game and added 4.5 assists per outing. He drained 66.7% of his field goals, made 50-percent from 3-point range, and dropped in 80% from the free-throw line.

Forced to assume running the point for Kentucky with Sahvir Wheeler still sidelined with an injury during the LSU game. Against Vandy, he netted15 points, four assists, four rebounds, one steal and a block.

In a shellacking 107-79 win over Tennessee all Washington did was pour in a career-high 28 points, hand out five assists and grabbed three steals.

After that he was asked about Kentucky proving themselves against tougher and real competition.

"“I feel like we proved not only to other people, but to ourselves, that you know we can play with anybody in the country. We’ve always felt like we can play with anybody in the country, not just us beating up on smaller schools. We’ve always felt like we can compete with the best of the best, and it felt like tonight we showed that.”"

Washington is by himself as the only freshman in the country averaging at least 13.0 points, at least 4.0 assists and at least 4.0 rebounds per game, completing this feat while shooting at least 45% from the field and 40% or better from behind the arc.

What John Calipari will do with Wheeler back in the line up is yet to be seen but its clear running the show has not only boosted his game but his confidence as well. Something that the Kentucky team will need as the brutal meat of its schedule lies before them in the coming weeks.

That begins with UK hitting the road to College Station, Texas for a Wednesday battle with Texas A&M with an 8:30 p.m. ET tipoff on the SEC Network.

Kentucky will then head to Auburn on Saturday where Washington and Smith will square off in what should be a thrilling matchup. The Tigers currently hold the longest winning streak at 13-games right now. There only loss was a double-overtime heartbreaker to UCONN back on November 24 in the Bahamas.