Lamar Washington is a Great Fit for Grant McCasland’s 2023-24 Vision

Lamar Washington played hard in 2022-23.

That was the highest compliment someone could have given during the Chris Beard and Mark Adams’ Eras. From 2016 to 2022, you could have named full rosters that played their butts off. Not every year, but most were full of guys who just went out and competed.

‘The toughest team wins’ was a phrase we heard over and over again.

Somehow, the final roster of the Adams Era just wasn’t that tough. That’s not to say nobody on the roster was tough. Pop Isaacs looked like he wanted to kill everyone during most of his minutes, teammates included sometimes. Robert Jennings played hard in limited minutes. It’s not a surprise to me that those two players were recruited back to the McCasland roster.

I think Robert Jennings can be a force for McCasland, and Isaacs certainly has Tylor Perry from UNT-type potential, but it’s Lamar Washington that really fits McCasland’s vision for 2023 and beyond.


1.) He plays tough defense.

2.) He plays tough offense.

Thinking more on last year’s roster, Lamar Washington would have been the only guy, in my opinion, who deserved minutes on the Sweet 16 team. I know Jaylon Tyson had the physical tools, but his effort came in bursts and that just didn’t fit the tenacity of the previous team.

The Big 12 comp for Washington might make a few of you bristle, but I’m going to make the comparison anyway. Washington, in a lot of ways, is like Kevin McCullar. I know, he’s a Jayhawk now, but go back and watch the end of that Kansas game in Lawrence this season.

Think back to the rebound under the basket that clinched the game was all-heart by McCullar with 30-something seconds left in the game. McCullar is late to the board and grabs it in between De’Vion Harmon and Elijah Fisher with Tyson late to the slash and Obanor on the ground getting mauled.

That’s the type of game-winning effort that McCasland pays attention to, and McCullar had a ton of them while at Texas Tech.

Washington isn’t quite as big as McCullar, but I think he can turn into the same kind of 10 and 6 machine, with five or six plays off the box score that turn into winning basketball. He’ll also, along with Isaacs, provide a culture of playing tough. That was this previous roster’s biggest missing ingredient, a tough SOB veteran like McCullar to lead by example.

Washington, as a sophomore with a bunch of Big 12 minutes, is expected to be that guy by Grant McCasland.


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