SEC Morning Five: 11.02.11 EditionPosted by Brian Joyce on November 2nd, 2011
- Rumors are circulating in Lexington that guard Stacey Poole, Jr., is frustrated and considering transferring from the University of Kentucky. Stacey’s father got involved saying, “I can’t confirm the rumor at this time.” Poole didn’t receive much playing time last year for the Cats, and with star recruit after star recruit committing to John Calipari’s team, it’s not likely that his court time will increase in the future. Reports indicate that Poole has not impressed coach John Calipari in practice thus far this year, and the player has become increasingly disappointed with his role.
- Reports out of Vanderbilt’s practices are that freshman guard Dai Jon Parker is going to help tremendously with the Commodores’ shaky perimeter defense. Vanderbilt struggled mightily last year in that area, especially with the defensive liability of starting point guard Brad Tinsley. Kevin Stallings’ team ranked ninth in points allowed last year in the SEC. If Parker can provide shutdown defense on the speedy backcourts populating the SEC, he could see significant playing time in his first year with the ‘Dores.
- Speaking of the Commodores, Vandy coach Kevin Stallings feels somewhat fortunate that injured center Festus Ezeli wasn’t out longer than the expected six to eight weeks on his sprained MCL. “Anytime a guy (gets hurt) in the knee area, the first thing you think of is he done for the season?” Stallings said. “Fortunately that was not the case.” Stallings knows that not having Ezeli manning in the post for a while will have a huge effect on his team’s play. Anticipating early season tests against Louisville, Xavier, and several other ranked teams, Stallings said, “we’re not the team that’s picked in the Top 10 without him.”
- We mentioned this yesterday, but Chris Herren’s inspiring documentary, UnGuardable, aired on ESPN on Tuesday night chronicling his ugly battle with drug addiction. The story hits very close to home for Florida Gators forward Erik Murphy, according to the Gainesville Sun. Murphy’s father asked Herren to mentor his son after Murphy had some troubles of his own last season. Murphy learned a lot from Herren both on and off the court, and here’s hoping the lessons will leave a lasting positive impression to keep him out of trouble and playing basketball.
- Speaking of trouble, Auburn announced that head coach Tony Barbee has suspended a pair of players for a violation of team rules. There is no word yet on the rules broken by guards Tony Neysmith and Josh Langford, nor is there information about how long the suspension will run. Neysmith averaged 2.4 points and 1.3 assists per game while Langford averaged 4.6 points and 2.6 rebounds per game last season. Auburn, a team rebuilding after a 4-12 SEC record in Barbee’s first season on the Plains, really just needs as many live bodies as it can suit up at this point, so this is rather unfortunate news for Tiger fans.