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Reed Sheppard continues historic season; makes a young fan’s night special

Sheppard is also still very much in contention to be Kentucky Basketball’s all-time single-season steals leader.

Kentucky v Vanderbilt Photo by Carly Mackler/Getty Images

The Kentucky Wildcats picked up a much-needed win on Tuesday night as they knocked off the Vanderbilt Commodores in Nashville.

Antonio Reeves and Rob Dillingham carried the load offensively, but once again it was Reed Sheppard who filled up the stat sheet across the board.

Sheppard finished the night with six points, five rebounds, five steals, and three assists. With this stat line Sheppard has moved into some more impressive company in his short time in Lexington.

According to Chris Fisher of the Cats Pause, he has now moved into an elite list of past Kentucky players who have made 50+ threes and 50+ steals in a season.

Alongside that stat, according to Corey Price of the UK Sports Network, Sheppard is the first player in the John Calipari era to have at least six points, five rebounds, five steals, and three assists in a true road game for the Cats.

How about another stat?

According to Kyle Tucker of The Athletic, Sheppard stands alone as the only player to have 50+ made threes, 90+ assists, 50+ steals, and less than 40 turnovers in college basketball this season.

The Laurel County native is currently averaging 2.4 steals per game. At that rate, he’d finish the regular season with about 75 steals. That would be tied with Cliff Hawkins for fourth all-time in program history for a single season.

With a deep postseason run, Sheppard would be in contention for the all-time record of 87, set by Rajon Rondo in the 2004-05 season. Wayne Turner (79) and Rodrick Rhodes 76) make up the rest of the top five.

Sheppard has been awesome for Kentucky this season and continues to make an impact on the game each night out. Now, obviously, he has some growing to still do, especially with on-ball defense, but overall, this freshman season has been way better than expected.

He’s also become a fan-favorite, and on Tuesday, he made one fan’s night a special one, as captured by Tristan Pharis and Rare Rookies.

You love to see it.

With nine games remaining in the regular season, all of the Big Blue Nation is wondering; will Reed make a major impact in March Madness like his dad?

At this point in time, that answer seems to be a fairly simple one: Yes.

Enjoy him while you can, folks. Things are trending towards this being his only season in Lexington.