A lifetime ago in February of 2020, John Calipari had challenged Immanuel Quickley to score 25 points in a game. Teammates Nick Richards, Tyrese Maxey, Ashton Hagans, and EJ Montgomery had already achieved the feat at that point in the season, but the front runner for SEC Player of the Year had not. Right on queue, Quickley had dropped 26 points in their very next game against Florida.
John Calipari, like most coaches, has never been publicly supportive of players trying to reach certain statistical thresholds. It is always more about "fighting" or "doing what the team needs you to do in your role", and never "we need you to get X points.”
Yet with the 25 point mark, Coach Cal actually had claimed that it could ultimately be what gets Kentucky tournament wins.
“I like to have five to six guys have a game with 25. And the reason is you get in the NCAA Tournament and you may need somebody to go crazy to win a game.”
To not be reliant on a single scorer, but rather have five to six guys that can put the team on their back and win a tournament game is a key ingredient to winning a national championship.
Keion Brooks, after putting up 27 in a blowout road win over Kansas, joins this year's 25 point club, putting us one step closer to that “five to six” players mark.
Oscar Tshiebwe - 30, 29, 25
TyTy Washington - 28
Keion Brooks - 27
Sahvir Wheeler - 26
Kellan Grady has come close to the mark twice, getting 23 points on two separate occasions. Grady, along with Davion Mintz, are probably our most likely candidates of becoming our 5th and 6th players to join the 25 point club. Unless, of course, you know…