Below are the SEC’s top 5 forwards heading into next year.
1) Rickea Jackson — Mississippi State
Jackson burst onto the scene as a freshman and showed no signs of slowing down. She led the Bulldogs in scoring with 15.1 points per game. Jackson can be unconscious from midrange and a force in the paint. She scored in double figures in 23 of the Bulldogs 33 games, having posted a season-34 against Auburn.
Jackson improved as a defender with 20 blocks. That number should increase going forward. Jackson is a bonafide star in the making and will continue to put the nation on notice.
2) Rennia Davis — Tennessee
Davis is a scoring threat from anywhere on the floor. In a standout junior campaign, Davis found herself on the Wooden Award List. Davis averaged 18 points per game. Do not be surprised if that number gets above 20 next year. She can be a factor in the paint, can hit from midrange, and launch from a distance.
Defensively, Davis can be vulnerable. At 6-foot-2, she is agile with second to none vision. Davis will be a problem for the opposition. Expect her name to be on next year’s Wooden Award List.
3) Victoria Saxton — South Carolina
Saxton’s role will be critical for the Gamecocks. With the departure of Mikiah Herbert Harrigan, Saxton will have big shoes to fill. Defensively, she posted 43 blocks and 29 steals. Saxton excels on the defensive end and will be heavily relied upon by Dawn Staley.
Offensively, Saxton averaged 5.5 points. That number will skyrocket, as Saxton will likely start. Look for her to fill the stat line and be a key component of the Gamecocks’ success.
4) KeKe McKinney — Kentucky
Like Saxton, McKinney’s defensive game is lethal. The two posted similar numbers, as McKinney recorded 42 blocks and 23 steals. McKinney should see an increase in minutes.
The Wildcats have a legitimate shot at taking the SEC crown, and Matthew Mitchell will look to McKinney to be a formidable presence in the frontcourt. This, combined with strong leadership, will elevate McKinney’s role with the team.
5) Tatyana Wyatt — Kentucky
Also, like Saxton, Wyatt averaged 5.5 points. Wyatt is developing a robust offensive game down low and should average close to a double-double. She and McKinney complement each other and are capable of owning the paint throughout a game.
Wyatt plays with high energy. She can make game-changing plays and show up when it matters most. Wyatt, McKinney, and Rhyne Howard will be a three-headed monster that can potentially command the SEC.
All five forwards are game-changers. Their impact can be monumental, and all will have their share of opportunities. For the Bulldogs, Jackson’s offensive numbers will continue to elevate, and she will continue to develop as an imposing defender.