Kentucky player notes and trends

A look at how UK players are trending:

Nerlens Noel: The freshman center followed a school-record 12 blocked shots at Ole Miss with 14 rebounds at Texas A&M. He ended up with 19 points and 14 rebounds, his third double-double of the season. Noel took 10 shots, hitting seven. It was his most shot attempts since he went three-of-14 in the home loss to Baylor. Noel also had 10 defensive rebounds Saturday, his highest total in SEC play. His two blocked shots against the Aggies was his fewest since blocking just two shots at Louisville on December 29. Prior to Saturday, Noel had been speaking softly but carrying a loud swat. (Sorry, couldn't resist.)

Julius Mays: The senior scored 19 points in College Station, his best scoring game since coming to UK. He made four-of-six three-pointers and has now hit 15 of 27 threes over his last six games. Before Saturday, Mays hadn't been counted on for his scoring. This was just his second double-figure scoring game in his last eight games. Ah, but for Father Time it came at a most opportune time.

Kyle Wiltjer: Saturday was good and bad for the sophomore. He scored in double figures for the fifth time in his last six games. He also blocked three shots, tying his season-opening mark against Maryland. But the forward committed six turnovers, most by a Cat in a game this season. And after taking 12 three-pointers against Ole Miss — he nailed five — Wiltjer was held to just two three-point attempts Saturday. He made one.

Archie Goodwin: After scoring 24 points at Ole Miss, the freshman guard scored only nine at Texas A&M. After making 12 of 14 free throws in Oxford, he got to the line for just two free throws in College Station, making one. Goodwin has not hit a three-pointer since the first Texas A&M game on January 12. He's 0-for-8 from behind the stripe since. Little wonder he keeps taking those drives into rush hour traffic.

Ryan Harrow: The freshman point guard played a season-high 41 minutes on Saturday. After a stretch of eight straight double-figures scoring games, Harrow has failed to reach double figures in two of his last four games. He scored eight points Saturday. He also committed five turnovers, the third time in the last seven games he's had a quartet of miscues.

Alex Poythress: The freshman forward scored just five points Saturday, his fewest since scoring three points at Notre Dame way back on November 29. Poythress missed all three of his shots from the floor, the first time this season he failed to make at least one field goal in a game. He also failed to get an offensive rebound for the first time since the league-opener at Vanderbilt.

Jarrod Polson: The scrappy junior played 13 minutes Saturday, the fifth straight game in which he's logged double-digit playing time. Polson also shot his first free throws in SEC play, going two-for-two at the line. He's now scored in five straight games. Those who feared that Harrow's return would mean the end of Polson's playing time have been pleasantly surprised.

Willie Cauley-Stein: The freshman forward played four minutes at Texas A&M, his first appearance since the Tennessee game on Jan. 15. The Kansas native had missed four straight games after undergoing a minor procedure on his left knee. John Calipari said his plan was to let Cauley-Stein “get his wheels underneath him” on Saturday.

Jon Hood: After playing eight productive minutes — three rebounds, one assist — at Ole Miss, the junior didn't make it off the bench at Texas A&M.

 

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