Saturday, May 23, 2009

Kentucky Wildcats' 2009-10 Roster

The signing of point guard John Wall brought Kentucky's 2009 recruiting season to a close. Now that the recruiting class is complete, it is time for John Calipari to finalize his Kentucky roster for next season. Word came yesterday that Calipari has met with three players that will not be returning to Kentucky next season. The unknown variable is whether or not Jodie Meeks will withdraw from the NBA Draft and return to college. I am going to share my thoughts on the Kentucky roster for next season.

All Potential Kentucky Scholarship Players:

Kevin Galloway 6-7 215 Sr.
Ramon Harris 6-7 218 Sr.
Jodie Meeks 6-4 208 Sr.
Jared Carter 7-2 270 Sr.
Michael Porter 6-3 198 Sr.
Perry Stevenson 6-9 207 Sr.
Josh Harrellson 6-10 265 Jr.
Patrick Patterson 6-9 235 Jr.
Matt Pilgrim 6-8 233 Jr.
A.J. Stewart 6-7 218 Jr.
Darnell Dodson 6-7 215 So.
DeAndre Liggins 6-6 202 So.
Darius Miller 6-7 223 So.
DeMarcus Cousins 6-9 250 Fr.
Jon Hood 6-6 185 Fr.
Daniel Orton 6-10 265 Fr.
Eric Bledsoe 6-1 185 Fr.
John Wall 6-3 180 Fr.
Donald Williams 6-3 205 RS-Fr.

Notes:

- Kentucky has 13 available scholarships
- Michael Porter has already decided to end his basketball career and focus on his family and professional career
- Donald Williams was already a one-season scholarship player; he will no longer be a Kentucky Wildcat
- Jared Carter graduated but could have applied for an additional season of eligibility; that will not be the case; Carter is no longer a Wildcat
- We have learned that A.J. Stewart will end his Kentucky career and transfer to another school
- It is not guaranteed at this point, but I feel strongly that Jodie Meeks will withdraw from the NBA Draft and return to Kentucky
- If Meeks returns, that is going to leave 15 scholarship players vying for 13 scholarships

The two players that will not be on scholarship figure to come from the group of DeAndre Liggins, Kevin Galloway, Josh Harrellson and Matt Pilgrim. There are unconfirmed rumors that a couple of players may have some academic issues that will make them ineligible next season. There have also been rumors that a player or two might volunteer to give up scholarships and become walk ons. One other rumor is that Calipari will significantly decrease the number of walk ons and the early favorites to stay are Mark Krebs and Dwight Perry.

Taking everything into consideration, I am going to take a guess at what the Kentucky roster will look like next season.

Kevin Galloway 6-7 215 Sr.
Ramon Harris 6-7 218 Sr.
Jodie Meeks 6-4 208 Sr.
Perry Stevenson 6-9 207 Sr.
Patrick Patterson 6-9 235 Jr.
Darnell Dodson 6-7 215 So.
DeAndre Liggins 6-6 202 So. or Matt Pilgrim 6-8 233 Jr.
Darius Miller 6-7 223 So.
DeMarcus Cousins 6-9 250 Fr.
Jon Hood 6-6 185 Fr.
Daniel Orton 6-10 265 Fr.
Eric Bledsoe 6-1 185 Fr.
John Wall 6-3 180 Fr.
Dwight Perry - Walk On
One other walk on - Mark Krebs or a current player that opts to give up scholarship

My Potential Starting Five:

C DeMarcus Cousins
PF Patrick Patterson
SF Darius Miller
SG Jodie Meeks
PG John Wall

How Will Players Fare in Calipari's Offense:

Jodie Meeks: Meeks is coming off an All-American season, which is impressive considering how things finished this season. He is a great shooter and has a knack for getting into the paint and drawing fouls. Jodie is not a bad ball-handler, but that is probably his weakest area on the offensive side of the ball. DDM Outlook: If Meeks enters an offense that gives him true freedom and allows him to explode to the basket and/or get good, open looks from outside – he could go down as one of the Kentucky’s all-time greats.
Patrick Patterson: For the most part, Patterson was Kentucky’s only hope down-low this past season. I feel that he would be better suited at a power forward position, playing alongside a true center. He has shown that he has a nice outside touch and that the can get to open spot when facing the basket. DDM Outlook: Patterson could potentially excel in this offensive scheme. The offense would allow him to play a position that is a little more natural than he has been forced to play in his first two seasons. It will be exciting to see Patrick get up-and-down the court in a fast-paced offense.
Darius Miller: Miller came on strong near the end of this freshman season. He showed that he has plenty of upside and will be a nice player for Kentucky down the road. DDM Outlook: Miller would definitely be able to adapt to the new offense. He has shown that he has a consistent outside jumper and he has been one of the better players on the current roster at driving into the paint for short jumpers and layups. Miller is athletic enough to play in Calipari’s system.
DeAndre Liggins: Liggins is a player that is hard to figure out. He showed flashes of brilliance in several games last season, but found himself on the other end of the spectrum more times than not. He appears to be athletically gifted, but seems to struggle with decision-making and staying under control. DDM Outlook: Liggins has the explosive capabilities that could make him shine in Calipari’s system. He has the speed and athletic ability to get to the rim and take advantage of the offense’s spacing. The question that remains is whether or not he has the basketball knowledge to pick up on the keys to success in the DDM.
Kevin Galloway: Galloway was the player that the fans called for all season and everyone felt he should have been playing more. Everyone, that is, except his head coach. Galloway is a physically gifted player, but his decision-making and jump shot has been suspect. When he makes the correct decision, he may be the best passer on the roster. DDM Outlook: Galloway has potential to be successful in the new offense, but he needs to work hard on outside shooting.
Ramon Harris: Harris was a solid contributor all season when he avoided the injury bug. He is generally considered the Cats’ best defender and is capable of scoring 8-10 points a game. DDM Outlook: Harris may be a bit slow to be great in Calipari’s system. He also has a less-than-stellar outside jumper. I look for Harris to stick around but see fewer minutes under the new coach.
Josh Harrellson: Harrellson was reduced to a role player for the most part this past season. He showed a little promise with his outside jumper early in the season, but was unable to make a big impact once SEC play began. DDM Outlook: I think Harrellson will have a hard time adjusting to the speed that is required to play in the new offense. He will likely be a role player at best.
Matt Pilgrim: Pilgrim is rumored to be a heck of an athlete but he is yet to take the court for Kentucky. He has sat out his required time after transferring and is looking forward to playing next season. DDM Outlook: There are to many unknowns with Pilgrim to project what he can do in the system. If the rumors about him are true, he is a pure athlete and that will bode well for him.
Perry Stevenson: Stevenson started strong last season, went through a long slump during the middle of the season and then finished up strong. He has shown a solid jump shot but has been too weak with the ball around the basket to succeed against the bigger, stronger SEC big men. DDM Outlook: Stevenson would fair much better in a non-traditional offense that doesn’t expose his weaknesses so much. I am interested to see if he can play that post position off the bench for Calipari.

5 comments:

King Lebron James said...

It'll be a great year for the Cats.

People aren't aware hos good Cousins is. He's been overshadowed with all of the John Wall hype but he is a dominating player whose effect on the program will be similar to Wall's.

BluegrassHoopster said...

I personally think Cousins will be the x factor in how good the team is next season. His play down low will free up Patterson's game and open up the entire perimeter. Cousins and Patterson will be a dynamic duo in the paint.

Anonymous said...

john wall is gonna dominate this shit

Anonymous said...

John Wall is hands-down, the most explosive player in the country. I know he is yet to play a single college game but from what I seen, this kid is the truth. His athleticism and speed is flat-out ridiculous. And not to mention, John Calipari's cool, calm, and collective coaching style will allow John Wall to be John Wall. What a great fit for this program. Kentucky is looking good.. Real good.

Anonymous said...

jodie meeks is by far the most lights out shooter in the country. p-patt is the best big man. the best pg recruit in j-wall. are you kidding me. the CATS are back! this seasons gona be the shit

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