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Sacha Killeya-Jones gets high praise from Derek Willis

Sacha Killeya-Jones didn’t make the impact many hoped he would during his freshman year.

Mark Zerof/USA Today

Kentucky big man Sacha Killeya-Jones didn’t see a whole lot of playing time during his freshman season.

Jones logged a total of 96 minutes for the entire season, shooting 17-29 from the floor while scoring 40 points, grabbing 31 rebounds, and blocking 10 shots.

Arguably his best game came early in the season in a blowout against UT-Martin, where he logged 13 minutes and scored 12 points on 6-8 shooting, while grabbing four rebounds and blocking a shot.

For many freshmen, this could be a decent buildup for a sophomore campaign, but Jones was a McDonald’s All-American playing at Kentucky. By all accounts, in preseason practices, some thought he was one of the best players on the floor.

But for whatever reason, that never materialized in the season and SKJ didn’t log a single minute after January 21.

However, his former Kentucky teammate Derek Willis sees him as having the most potential on next year’s Wildcats squad, which are strong words from the outgoing senior.

Willis went on Kentucky Sports Radio to talk about SKJ, amongst other things. Here is what he said.

“I think the kid with most potential on the team didn’t play hardly at all this year, Sacha,” Derek said. “Without a doubt. He has all the skill, all the potential’s there. You have to work with that stuff. He’s been in the gym, doing his thing but it’s hard for someone that young.”

He added “Without a doubt, that will help anyone,” Derek said of more time in the gym. “He’s super athletic, he has a lot of bounce to him. His jump shot right inside the three-point line looks good. It’s all there, he just has to put it together for himself.”

During SKJ’s time on the floor, it was easy to tell he had great athleticism and leaping ability. He has a really solid shooting form and overall, shot the ball pretty well from the floor at over 58 percent.

If he puts in the work to prepare himself physically in the weight room by putting on a few extra pounds of muscle and mentally preparing himself for a bigger role next season, I think he can be a major weapon for the Wildcats next season.

Having a player like SKJ could be vital for next year’s Wildcats.

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