One thing to be clear on from the start: I (Walt) do not know a whole lot about basketball. So any guesses I make on a possible starting five are going to be based on what I've looked at elsewhere on the internet and pure guess-work on my part.
Take a look at the roster below and realize just how much of Auburn's point scoring is gone from the 2014/15 team. Antoine Mason and KT Harrell were the lion's share of Auburn's scoring. Replacing them will be one of the biggest needs. Thankfully, there are some good recruits coming in and transfers who will be able to play.
One thing that immediately leaps out at you from the new guys is the height of Horace Spencer and Tyler Harris. For a team that was one of the shortest in the SEC last season, adding those two will definitely help with the undersized issue.
The only true Center listed on the roster is still Trayvon Reed, though. Tyler Harris is the next tallest, but he's being brought in to be the Power Forward, so I doubt we see him at Center. The Center position will probably be between Cinmeon Bowers, Trayvon Reed, and maybe freshman Horace Spencer since he's also pretty tall at 6-8. Spencer, Harris, and Bowers are true Power Forwards but could play Center if they have to. At any rate, it will be nice having options down low to give Bowers a breather when he needs it. Due to Auburn's depth at guard, they may continue running four guard sets with only one big man next year. Auburn desperately needs Trayvon to add muscle and develop his game if they are going to compete for an NCAA tournament spot next year.
Last season, Auburn did not have a true Point Guard eligible on the roster. That changes with Kareem Canty being eligible this season. By all accounts, Canty is the real deal at PG, too. Practice reports hyped him up as perhaps the best player on the team last season. It will be exciting to see what he can do on the court. Tahj Shamsid-Deen should be back from his shoulder surgeries to provide depth, there.
For the Shooting Guard, TJ Lang started playing very well at the end of last season. Off-season workouts should put him in a good place at the SG position. Auburn is bringing in three very good SGs from the 2015 recruiting class, though. TJ Dunans, New Williams, and Bryce Brown will provide some good competition for the spot. There's always the chance one of these moves over to another position as well, though.
The only Small Forward currently on the roster is Jack Purchase but Auburn's solution will come either in the form of Danjel Purifoy or Jordon Granger. Purifoy is definitely a big-time talent, and it's hard to see him not winning the starting job at that position right off the bat. It would be nice to see Granger move to the 3 to take advantage of his length and outside shooting ability. It's also possible that one of Auburn's many Shooting Guards becomes a wing to give more depth here.
Now bear in mind this is purely a guess on my part. I don't know who among the new recruits will take which new positions, so this is my (Walt) pure guess at what the two-deep line-up will look like next season.
|PG||Kareem Canty||Tahj Shamsid-Deen|
|SG||TJ Lang||Dunans, Brown|
|SF||Danjel Purifoy||Lang, Brown, Dunans|
|PF||Tyler Harris||Spencer, Granger|
|C||Cinmeon Bowers||Reed (maybe Spencer, too)|
I don't know about y'all, but that looks like a pretty good line-up to me. We're going to need someone (probably Canty, Purifoy, and Harris) to really step up as point-scorers, but that's a pretty good starting five and back-ups to provide some quality depth to this basketball team. What say you?
Tuco here. I think that starting lineup looks reasonable. TJ Lang had better watch his 6 with that talented bunch behind him. He looked good at the end of last year but he's a long way from the next KT Harrell. Dunans could take his spot before next season. Also, I think Horace Spencer will push Bowers and Harris for floor time down low. Granger will have a better chance of getting playing time behind Purifoy at small forward.