The Starting Fives: SEC

October 16th, 2008


Unlike the NBA, where most starting lineups are set in stone weeks before the season, NCAA starting fives are highly unsettled and constantly in flux. Going through the BCS leagues this week, I'll be projecting the starting fives for each team. Also included is the team's most important bench option, and some notes on other possible lineups.

In the case where a quality player is ineligible for the fall semester or suspended for the opening few games, I've still included them in the projections. These are really supposed to be projections of how lineups will look in February and March.

Next week, based on these lineups, I'll be throwing out statistical projections for major BCS contributors.



G Ronald Steele Sr
G Senario Hillman So
F Alonzo Gee Sr
F JayKychal Green Fr
C Demetrius Jemison Jr

6 Brandon Hollinger (PG)

Notes: Besides Hollinger, the other feature backup is junior guard Mikail Torrance. Bama received a blow when talented wing Tony Mitchell didn't qualify academically. This means that little-used sophomore Justin Knox and junior Yamene Coleman will see more time.


G Courtney Fortson Fr
G Stefan Welsh Jr
F Montrell McDonald Jr
F Michael Sanchez Fr
F Michael Washington Jr

6 Rotnei Clarke (G)

Notes: The other frontcourt reserves will be Andre Clark and Brandon Moore. If you don't know who most of these guys are, don't worry.. even the coaching staff isn't sure what type of talent they have.


G Quantez Robertson Sr
G Rasheem Barrett Sr
G DeWayne Reed Jr
F Lucas Hargrove Jr

F Korvortney Barber

6 Tay Waller (SG)

Notes: Auburn will rely heavily on a Jucos to provide depth. Waller is known as a great shooter, who could push for a starting spot. Frankie Sullivan, a freshman, will be the backup point guard. Up front, Waller's teammate at Okaloose-Walton JC, Johnnie Lett, and Francis Aihe will be the main reserves.


G Jai Lucas So Erving Walker Fr
G Walter Hodge Sr
G Nick Calathes So
F Chandler Parsons So
F Dan Werner Jr

6 Alex Tyus (PF)

Notes: There's a good chance Tyus will start the season in place of Parsons, but Parsons to me is a budding star who will start by the end of the year. Florida has other solid frontcourt reserves in big-time freshmen Eloy Vargas and Kenny Kadji, who will push the sophomore forwards for time. Backcourt depth is an issue however.  Freshman Erving Walker, a PG, and Ray Shipman, a wing, may be forced into action earlier than Coach Donovan would like. Lucas has decided to leave Florida, and will be replaced by Walker in the starting five.


G Zac Swansey So

G Corey Butler Sr
G Terrence Woodbury Sr
F Jeremy Price So

F Albert Jackson Jr

6 Howard (Trey) Thompkins (F)

Notes: The question for Georgia is whether the talented newcomers will steal starting positions. For example, Thompkins could start alongside Price & Jackson, pushing Woodbury to the 2, or Thompkins could simply replace Jackson.  Fellow freshman Dustin Ware will be the backup PG, but perhaps is talented enough to start alongside Swansey. 


G DeAndre Liggins Fr
G Jodie Meeks Jr
F Ramon Harris
F Perry Stevenson Jr
F Patrick Patterson So

6 Kevin Galloway (G)

Notes: You'll probably see Billy Gillispie throw out multiple lineups throughout the season, but I think this is how they'll look in March. Besides Galloway, don't forget about Michael Porter getting important minutes at PG as well.  Freshman Darius Miller will also see substantial time at the wings. Big man depth is an issue, where Juco transfer Josh Harrellson will be the main reserve.  


G Garrett Temple Sr
G Marcus Thornton Sr
G Terry Martin Sr
F Tasmin Mitchell Jr
C Chris Johnson Sr

6 Alex Farrer (G)

Notes: Besides Farrer, the other main reserves are point guard Bo Spencer, forward Quinton Thornton, and freshman guard Chris Bass. Also, one of talented newcomers Delwan Graham or Storm Warren will emerge as the main backup on the wing. Lastly, Temple isn't really a great PG, so its not inconceivable that one of Spencer or Bass starts at the 1, pushing Temple and Thornton down a spot, and Martin to the 6th man role.


G Dee Bost Fr
G Barry Stewart Jr
F Ravern Johnson So
F Brian Johsnon Sr
C Jarvis Varnado Jr

6 Twany Beckham (G)

Notes: Outside of Stewart and Varnado, MSU's minutes are up for grabs. Bost should emerge as the starting PG, with fellow freshman Beckham being the main backcourt reserve. Ravern Johnson will be pushed by Juco wing Jacquiese Holcombe, who could easily steal the staring role. Up front, Brian Johnson will have to beat out improving sophomore Kodi Augustus and talented freshman Romero Osby for the starting job.




G Chris Warren So
G David Huertas Jr
G Eniel Polynice Jr
F Terrance Henry Fr
F Malcolm White So

6 Zach Graham (G)

Notes: Besides Graham, the other key reserve is Trevor Gaskins. Both Graham and Gaskins should see a combined 30-35 mpg. As seems to be the case with a lot of SEC teams, there's little depth in the frontcourt. Juco forward DeAundre Cranston might be the best option in the post. Also expect Kevin Cantinol, a red-shirt freshman, to get 10 mpg backing up Henry & White.




G Devan Downey Jr
G Zam Fredrick Sr
F Dominique Archie Jr
F Sam Muldrow So
F Mike Holmes So

6 Brandis Raley-Ross (G)

Notes: The one spot with competition is PF, where Evaldas Baniulis is an option. Those 7 guys will get the lions share of South Carolina's minutes. The rest of the reserves will only get scraps.




G Bobby Maze Jr
G Scotty Hopson Fr
G JP Prince Jr
F Tyler Smith Jr
F Wayne Chism Jr

6 Cameron Tatum (G)

Notes: Tennessee's starting five is solid, but depth is an issue. The main reserves are Tatum at the wing, Emanuel Negedu at power forward, and Brian Williams at center. Ryan Childress would also see important minutes if he could ever get his health together. Josh Tabb will also see 10-15 mpg as a guard, but the problem is that neither he nor Tatum can play the point.  Freshman PG Daniel West may be forced into scattered minutes.




G Jermaine Beal Jr
G Brad Tinsley Fr
G Lance Goulbourne Fr
F Darshawn McClellan So
F AJ Ogilvy So

6 Andre Walker (F)

Notes: Goulbourne is certainly no lock to start (especially early), as his spot could be taken by Walker or equally talented newcomer Jeff Taylor. Up front, emerging talent Festus Ezeli backs up up Ogilvy. Backup PG is a definite weak spot, where guys like George Drake or Jamie Graham may be forced to play. Freshman Steve Tchiengang will see action behind McClellan.


Think my projections are off, let me know below where you differ! Also, let me know if there's any recent roster changes I've missed.



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