Leadership ties teams together and promotes success. I've identified nine dependable leaders, or 'glue guys,' for the 2019-20 season that will keep their teams closely knit and prepared for a possible March Madness run. Each are ranked in alphabetical order of conference.
1) Alex Lomax, 6-0, So., Memphis
James Wiseman said Lomax has been one of the top leaders so far in the preseason. That’s good enough for me to tab him as a key glue guy this season for the Tigers, who will need every bit of experience with a talented roster.
2) Dwayne Sutton, 6-5, Sr., Louisville
The Cardinals are the most experienced team in the ACC. Sutton is the versatile swing player who can compliment potential ACC player of the year Jordan Nwora. Sutton’s leadership will come in handy down the stretch.
3) Luke Frampton, 6-5, So., Davidson
Bob McKillop has loads of experience with Kellan Grady and Jon Axel Gudmundsson. But he has glowing things to say about Frampton’s ability to make shots and contribute. Frampton is going to be the unsung key player on a possible A-10 title team.
4) Theo John , 6-9, Jr., Marquette
The Golden Eagles will need a tough rebounder/defender to compete for a top three finish in the Big East. They have all of that in John.
5) Mike McGuirl, 6-2, Jr., Kansas State
McGuirl won’t get the headlines like Xavier Sneed and Cartier Diarra, but he will be as important a piece in ensuring the Wildcats stay in the hunt for a top-five finish in the Big 12 with his ability to make shots.
6) Andres Feliz, 6-2, Sr., Illinois
Brad Underwood said he needs to make sure his team has the toughness needed to take the next step. Well, he’s got Feliz to make sure that happens. He’ll do the grinding work for the Illini this season.
7) Romello White, 6-8, Jr., Arizona State
Remy Martin is the star of this squad, but White is one of the more consistent and reliable players who will be the difference between an NIT and NCAA berth.
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8) Immanuel Quickley, 6-3, So., Kentucky
Ashton Hagans will be the lead guard. Tyrese Maxey will be the star. But Quickley could be the glue on the perimeter, giving the Wildcats needed spot minutes.
9) Corey Kispert, 6-6, Jr., Gonzaga
Kispert is the favorite to win glue guy of the year award. He will be the one who gets the 50-50 balls more than most, play a variety of positions, never complain, make big shots and scrap for boards. If the Zags reach their potential this season then Kispert will likely be the reason they finish strong again.