Saturday, January 29, 2011

SEC Player of the Year?

I know it's very early in the SEC schedule but looking at the league overall, I have absolutely no idea who is the front runner for SEC player of the year. Here's a look at the top 10 scorers so far.

1) John Jenkins (Vandy) - 18.8
2) Chris Warren (Ole Miss) - 18.3
2) Terrence Jones (UK) - 18.3
4) Ravern Johnson (Miss State) - 18.2
5) Brandon Knight (UK) - 17.6
6) Trey Thompkins (UGA) - 17.6
7) Scotty Hopson (UT) - 16.5
8) JaMychal Green (Bama) - 15.5
9) Jeffrey Taylor (Vandy) - 15.3
10) Tobias Harris (UT) - 15.1

I'll also throw Travis Leslie (UGA) - 15.0 and Erving Walker (UF) - 14.3 in the discussion., but I don't think anyone else really has a shot at scoring enough to be considered for the award. Now the problem with figuring out a leader is that not many of these guys have a second aspect of their game that is strong enough to distinguish themselves from the field. Jenkins is a scorer but is weak defensively, doesn't get any boards or assists and I think only the 2nd or 3rd most important person on the Vanderbilt team. The most important player is obviously Taylor but think he might have a difficult time winning unless he consistently has games like the MSU game on Thursday. Chris Warren can score and is 3rd in assists but Ole Miss is a bad team in the weak West. I think that leaves Terrence Jones as the front runner right now. He scores, is second in the league in rebounding and will get the "I play for UK so I must be the best player" bump. What makes me slightly hesitant with Jones is that 1) he is a freshman, 2) Brandon Knight might steal some of the UK vote from him and 3) he is following in the footsteps of a far more dominant freshman UK big man in DeMarcus Cousins.

At the end of the day it is super early and until the better teams separate themselves from the pack and the best players lead those teams to tough road SEC wins, we won't know who the top candidates will be for the player of the year. However, I think if this says anything its that the POY race (and the conference in general) is completely wide open for a player (and a team) to take and run with it. I think Vanderbilt, John Jenkins and Taylor have an amazing opportunity to really put Vandy basketball on the map as a top tier program.

I just hope they take advantage of it.


Anonymous said...

Halftime @ Memorial. VU trails AK by 7. AK, as it seems w/ every SEC team so far this season, plays lights out. I sensed from the outset that this would be a classic "trap" game. We'll see if we bring intensity in the 2nd half.

Anonymous said...

Arkansas is playing the game of their lives. Everything is dropping for them. Hopefully we show the same kind of fight as we did in the 2nd half of the last game. I don't understand how we're being outrebounded. Ten minutes left. We need to hit the boards, hit some shots, and step up the defense in a major way.

Anonymous said...

Well, now we know that we might as well tap out on this basketball season and start thinking about 2011 football. The ceiling for this team is a first round NCAA loss, and we have seen that show before.