Five-star point guard TyTy Washington commits to Kentucky
LEXINGTON, Ky. (UK Athletics) – Kentucky men’s basketball coach John Calipari added another piece to his 2021-22 roster with the signing of TyTy Washington on Wednesday. Washington, a 6-foot-3 guard from Phoenix, is the third freshman to ink with the Wildcats, joining forwards Daimion Collins and Bryce Hopkins, who signed with UK during the fall signing period.
Washington, a highly coveted guard out of Compass Prep in Chandler, Arizona, is ranked as high as the No. 12 overall player in the class of 2021 and second at his position by ESPN.
A five-star prospect (ESPN and 247Sports), Washington will be eligible to play in the 2020-21 season.
“I’m excited for the opportunity to come to Kentucky and chase my dreams,” Washington said. “Coach Cal told me if you come to Kentucky, you bet on yourself and I’ve always done that.”
Washington provides consistency from the guard position and can play with or without the ball in his hands. At 6-foot-3 and 185 pounds, he has elite size with room to grow. Washington is the prototypical Calipari guard who has the ability to score at all three levels, rebound and get out in transition and facilitate for his teammates.
He was recently named the MaxPreps Arizona Player of the Year after averaging 24.0 points, 7.0 assists and 6.0 rebounds per game for Compass Prep, which finished 30-2 on the season. He connected on 48% of his shots, including 41% from 3-point range and 88% from the free-throw line.
Washington suited up for Team Loyalty at the 2021 Iverson Roundball Classic in Memphis. Showcasing his range, he won the 3-point shooting contest at the event and scored a game-high 22 points.
One of the nation’s fastest risers in the recruiting rankings, he really garnered attention at the GEICO Nationals in early April where he was tabbed to the All-Tournament Team. He registered 22 points, 10 rebounds and five assists in the quarterfinals and had 15 points and five assists in a loss to No. 1 Montverde Academy in the semifinals.
In addition to ESPN’s top-15 ranking, Washington is tabbed the No. 16 overall player by 247Sports and No. 32 by Rivals.
“Players who thrive in our culture are players who are physically tough, who have a mental toughness to them, who want the challenge and are not looking for guarantees, and who want to see how good they can be in a really competitive environment,” Calipari said. “All of that describes TyTy Washington. He wanted this. He wanted the challenge. He is a combination guard who can play both point and off guard. He is a downhill runner who physically gets to the rim. His physical attributes and his mental approach leads me to believe he will be a terrific defender too. I am ecstatic for him to join Bryce Hopkins and Daimion Collins, two other young and talented players, in our freshman class.”
With Washington’s addition, UK is going to be in the mix for one of the top classes in the nation yet again.
In every season in the Calipari era, the Wildcats have signed a top-three recruiting class according to the Recruiting Services Consensus Index, which tallies major recruiting rankings and plugs them into a formula to calculate a consensus ranking. Kentucky has now signed 62 top-50 recruits, 47 top-25 players and 26 top-10 players (according to Rivals) in what will now be Calipari’s 13 recruiting classes at Kentucky.
Kentucky’s 2021-22 roster continues to take shape. Freshman guards Brandon Boston Jr. and the late Terrence Clarke announced their intentions to declare for the NBA Draft and pursue a professional career, as did senior forward Olivier Sarr. Freshman forward Isaiah Jackson and graduate guard Davion Mintz have also entered their names in the draft but have indicated they are open to returning after going through the draft evaluation process.
In addition to Washington, UK added highly touted players in Collins and Hopkins, both consensus top-50 prospects to comprise its freshman class.
Kentucky has also added three transfers to its roster for next season over the last three and a half months. Forward Oscar Tshiebwe, a sophomore this past season, joined the program in late January from West Virginia, Davidson guard Kellan Grady, a graduate transfer, announced his decision in late March, and CJ Fredrick, a guard from Iowa, signed with the Wildcats earlier this month.
The six – and potentially more – newcomers will team up with some of the most significant roster returns in the Calipari era.