ESPN’s Myron Medcalf is spending the offseason previewing Power 5 teams, and today, he’s focusing on Kentucky; specifically, who will lead the Cats this year now that Tyler Ulis is headed to the NBA. While Medcalf calls UK’s 2016 freshmen “grown men,” even grown men can be lost if someone doesn’t step up and take the reins. Who will step up? Medcalf says Isaiah Briscoe seems like the frontrunner after withdrawing from the NBA Draft. I think that’s spot on, as is Medcalf’s thesis that, even with elite talent, UK won’t go far without leadership.
If the program fails to identify a leader for this inexperienced collection of magic, however, Kentucky could miss its potential.
That’s the only question about this team, though. It’s the only thing, barring injuries or other unforeseen developments, that could stall this ship. If the Wildcats grow, mature and bond, the rest of us will just gaze at the stars in Lexington. Again.
By the end of the season, one of the freshmen may mature into a leader like Anthony Davis or Michael Kidd-Gilchrist in 2012; however, until then, it’s on Briscoe’s shoulders to help mold this young group into a contender.