Josh Richardson Reaches 1,000 Career Points

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    Josh Richardson-1-11We’ll start with the not-so-great aspects of Josh Richardson’s performance in Tennessee’s 66-62 win at South Carolina on Tuesday night. Richardson turned the ball over eight times – something that Donnie Tyndall credited South Carolina for in the postgame press conference – and he missed a large chunk of the second half due to foul trouble.

    “I think the biggest thing with that is you have to credit South Carolina,” Tyndall said in the postgame press conference as to why Richardson turned it over more than normal. “They do that to a lot of people. Again, they really, really pressure the ball, they sit on top of the wings and make it hard to enter in. So if you saw times our guys were cutting and getting screened for and not able to catch, so it put Josh in a position where he was bouncing, bouncing and bouncing and over-handling, which led to his turnovers.

    “But he made some great plays too. He drove the ball a couple times, got to the rim. So Josh has made a lot of progress, as we all know, he’s not a natural point guard, but he’s continuing to grow and learn on the fly.”

    But we gloss over those facts a bit for now, because of what Richardson did accomplish last night, becoming the 47th player in Tennessee history to reach the 1,000-point club in his career.

    It’s not that 1,000 points is some unreachable milestone for a college basketball player these days. But the fact that Richardson, who came to Tennessee as a relatively unheralded defensive specialist, has become such a complete player, is what is so special about that moment. He’s now also a scorer, a facilitator and he’s stepped into a role as a leader as well.

    It wasn’t surprising to see that many of his former teammates were willing to send him congratulatory messages via this UTSports.com video:

    But the 6-foot-6 Edmond, Okla., native has also never lost his knack for being the top-notch defender that originally earned him playing time as an underclassman under Cuonzo Martin in the 2011-12 season. Which gives us an excuse to leave you with these three Vines of Richardson stuffing players from behind over the past two games.