January 8, 2008

Kennedy picks his SEC fab five

The rules are simple. Ole Miss head coach Andy Kennedy got to pick five. Position wasn't a factor. Coach-ability didn't matter. This is about ball. This is about skill.

Kennedy selected his five favorite players in the SEC (and his favorite freshman). He picked players based strictly on what he wants and what he likes.

Not surprisingly, three of the guys can shoot the ball at a high rate.

The only rule - Kennedy couldn't pick any of his players.

G Devan Downey South Carolina
5-foot-9 sophomore

AK on Devan: I've got experience with him, and he's a warrior. He loves to win. He brings a bundle of energy and is very difficult to contain. As you can see with Chris Warren, I like point guards who can go make plays. He can certainly do that. I'll always have a very close bond with Devan Downey because of the circumstances we were both put in. I was very dependent on him, and he was very dependent on me. Anytime you're in the trenches with a kid, he and I will always be close.

G Jamont Gordon, Mississippi State
6-foot-4 junior

AK on Jamont: I really respect Jamont Gordon. He's the toughest matchup in our league and one of the toughest matchups in the country because of his versatility. He can beat you in so many ways. He's one the guys you have to formulate a gameplan for going into the game in order to have an opportunity to contain him.

G Shan Foster, Vanderbilt
6-foot-6 senior

AK on Shan: If the season ended today, he'd be the most valuable player in the league. He's really taken his game to another level. I think he's going to play at the next level with his ability to shoot the ball.

G Chris Lofton, Tennessee
6-foot-2 senior

AK on Chris: Chris Lofton's a shooter after my own heart. I was fortunate enough to be able to make a living shooting the ball for a few years. I think Chris will be able to do the same. He's the best hard-shot maker in the nation.

F Richard Hendrix, Alabama
6-foot-8 junior

AK on Richard: With Richard Hendrix, it's all about his ability to score. He's the best low post scorer in the league. All coaches rest better at night knowing that if things get hard, you have someone you can throw it to near the basket. They're going to catch it and score at a very efficient rate. He's certainly done that throughout his career. I also think he will play at the next level.

Favorite Freshman

C A.J. Ogilvy, Vanderbilt
6-foot-10 freshman

AK on A.J.: He's unbelievable. The Andrew Bogut-comparisons were inevitable because they're both big Australian centers. But, I think A.J.'s better at this phase in his career. He could be a one-and-out guy.


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