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Minnesota Player Preview: Isaiah Washington

NCAA Basketball: Nebraska Omaha at Minnesota Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

Today we preview the top recruit in the incoming class. Isaiah Washington is the second highest ranked recruit since 2009, behind on Amir Coffey.

MEASURABLES

Washington is listed at 6’1” and just 160 pounds, so almost certainly one of his responsibilities this year is to eat all the food.

REVIEW OF 2016-2017

Washington had an excellent senior season. A consensus four star recruit, Washington also bucked the trend of top New York players by staying in New York instead of going to a prep school out of the city. He was named New York’s Mr. Basketball, becoming just the fourth point guard ever to win the award. On the AAU circuit, he averaged close to 18 points and 7 assists. He also shared MVP honors in the Elite 24 All American game. Off the court, his Jelly Fam movement became huge on Instagram, and Nike even ripped off their identity to make a shoe without compensating any of them. Good job Nike!

OUTLOOK FOR 2017-2018

Washington will be a key contributor for Minnesota this year. He will likely come off the bench to replace Nate Mason, which should keep Mason fresher late in the season. That said, expect Pitino to experiment with a two PG look with Washington and Mason on the court together. Washington will score a lot while he’s on the floor, but early reports suggest that he needs to improve his defense to take his game to the next level.

If Washington has a stellar freshman campaign, the Gophers will be a dangerous team in Big Ten and postseason play.

CONCLUSION

Get ready to embrace the Jelly. Isaiah Washington will play early and often for the Gophers, likely as Nate Mason’s backup. He has a lot of potential, and if he arrives ahead of schedule, the Gophers will be a very difficult matchup for any team.