|We need some size off the bench.
Travis Taylor: 6'7", 214 pounds
Taylor is probably the closest thing Xavier will have on the roster to a traditional inside big man. He has five career three-point attempts, and he's missed them all. Mostly, he hangs around the rim, grabs boards, and has obvious athleticism. It's not ridiculous to hope that Taylor fills the shoes of the recently departed Jamel McLean. He is, however, two inches shorter and thirty pounds lighter than Jamel. That's a very real size limitation that is probably going to limit his ability to play the five as effectively as McLean.
Jeff Robinson: 6'9", 219 pounds
Robinson is a complete enigma. He has the physical gifts to make a huge difference in a basketball game - just ask LaSalle - but he seems almost content to languidly drift around the periphery of most contests. Aside from his mental makeup, Robinson suffers from a serious case of being really skinny. With his slender build and leaping ability, he's better suited to come across the lane for help defense than having to defend a banger on the post. His offensive post skills are also a meaningful question mark, and he would have trouble getting the deep position that Kenny's bulk affords him.
Griffin McKenzie: 6'9", 220 pounds
|I don't have a current picture of McKenzie in file.
UPDATE: Griff reports that he's now 230. So am I. He's probably considerably more fit.
UPDATE II: The previously posted picture was apparently from Griff's freshman year. He's considerably more intimidating now. It's also possible that he consumes his enemies with fireballs from his eyes and bolts of lightning from his arse.
Jalen Reynolds: 6'9" 210 pounds
Reynolds will be a freshman next year and is - almost impossibly - a lighter build than Jeff Robinson. Coach Mack has mentioned on occasion that freshmen only learn one position at X, and it's likely that Reynolds would be slotted as a four, not a five. Beyond that, all the obvious limitations that Robinson has defensively also apply to Reynolds. Reynolds has shown a decent post-up game (though there would be some question of his ability to get and hold post position against, say, Michael Eric) as well as a jumper out to 12 feet or so. Probably unlikely to see time as a back-up center though.
This may end up being the direction in which the team evolves. When Kenny is off the court, a proliferation of guards and wings opens up an interesting set of options for the staff. A G-G-F-F-F or G-G-G-F-F lineup wouldn't be out of the question, especially if Kenny's breathers were timed to coincide with those of the opponent's banger(s). Much has been made of Dez Wells' readiness to contribute from day one, and Justin Martin's availability coupled with Brad Redford's return gives Xavier something on the order of five guys who can play the 1-3 positions before you even consider what Darwin Davis may be capable of as a freshman. Some combination of that group coupled with two of Taylor, Robinson, Reynolds, and McKenzie gives Xavier a change-of-pace lineup that doesn't lose much with Kenny catching a breather.
|What's this guy's eligibility situation?