The leadership question for basketball

The obvious holes to fill for Ole Miss basketball next season are in the frontcourt where Murphy Holloway and Reggie Buckner have moved on.

The guards are experienced: Marshall Henderson, Jarvis Summers, LaDarius White.

Another big question facing Ole Miss will be one of leadership. Nick Williams wasn’t the biggest producer on the team after his foot injury, but he was the glue guy. He was the guy who had everyone’s ear.

That’s another vacant position on this team now.

Assuming Demarco Cox gets the medical waiver for last season, Henderson will be the team’s only senior. Immediately following the NCAA elimination loss to La Salle, Henderson was in the locker room talking about changing his behavior and being a leader.

It’s interesting that when asked the leadership question earlier this week Henderson’s name was the first mentioned by Cox.

“The biggest person is Marshall. Marshall’s got to step up. He’s the only senior on this team. He’s going to have to take ownership of telling people what to do and how to do stuff,” Cox said.

After Henderson, Cox mentioned Summers, White and himself.

Aaron Jones, a junior coming off an ACL tear,  threw his own name into the leadership discussion.

“I’m one of the leaders. I’m going to work real, real hard, so I can fill the roles of Murph and Reg,” he said.

The senior player is a natural choice, but Henderson isn’t your natural player. Maybe he becomes a guy that other rally around. He’s got the first requirement down. Players follow other players who make plays. He’s also a strong supporter of his teammates.

Henderson in a leadership role will depend on the things he says and does before and after the game.

Ole Miss still isn’t ready to put Henderson back in front of the media yet. Rebels coach Andy Kennedy, though, has good things to say about Henderson’s off-season.

“He’s always been a worker. We came in for the off-season, and he’s gotten stronger and worked on the areas of the game he needs to improve,” Kennedy said. “He’s been very consistent in doing the things you want your senior to do.”



Denham Springs, La., native, Mississippian since 1989 with a stop in Meridian before arriving in Tupelo. Daily Journal beat writer since 1996, covering Ole Miss since 2002. Proud Northeast Louisiana alum. Follow me on Twitter @parrishalford and listen to John Davis and myself daily with The Ole Miss Beat on Rebel Sports Radio.

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