Monday, June 15, 2009

Jodie Meeks Stays In Draft

I spoke two days ago about how Tennessee had gotten a bunch of a good news in a row, and that trend continues today as Jodie Meeks reportedly will stay in the NBA Draft. This is a bit of a surprise, but I don't understand why some people are so perplexed. The fact is that this is a pretty weak NBA Draft, so even with a good season next year I'm not sure Meeks gets drafted any higher. And there's always the risk of an injury, or that he plays badly. Sure, the chance of a National Title is a great allure, but Meeks also has to think about his future. It's not like he has $100 Million in his future - he's got to make his money when he can.

This puts a lot of pressure now on Patrick Patterson. I spoke about a month ago about how he was more important to bring back than Meeks, as far as Kentucky fans should be concerned. Meeks is the more electric scorer, but Patterson is a glue-guy, and he will be necessary to try to hold together a team that will have a lot of young players with really big egos. But will he be enough? There won't be a lot of experience in their starting lineup next year other than him, including the likelihood that they'll start three freshmen.

I don't think there's any question that Kentucky will have the most talent in the SEC, and they're arguably the most talented team in the country (although I'd give Kansas the edge). But talent alone isn't always enough, and it's a mistake to hand the conference over to them. Tennessee, Mississippi State, Florida (and maybe even LSU) will give them a battle. Even Vanderbilt should be a very good team. The SEC stunk last year, but they'll be a whole lot better in 2010. Don't be too surprised to see the conference get six Tournament teams.

No comments: