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Wednesday, May 10, 2006

A dream come true

Good night's sleep puts Arthur in Kansas state of mind

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Dazed and confused hours after postponing a news conference to announce his college choice, a weary Darrell Arthur fell into a deep sleep late Monday night.

The 6-foot-9, 220-pound McDonald's All-America forward from Dallas' South Oak Cliff High woke refreshed Tuesday morning suddenly realizing where he wanted to attend college, thanks to one memorable, vivid dream.

"It was me playing in a (Kansas University) uniform in a game with all the players - Mario (Chalmers), Julian (Wright) and Brandon (Rush)," said Arthur.

He figured visualizing about KU, instead of finalists Baylor and LSU, was a sign from above, Arthur indicating he "prayed hard" before going to bed.

"In the dream, it just seemed like the right school," he added in a phone interview held minutes after Tuesday's noon press session on his grandmother's front porch in Dallas - where he signed a national letter of intent with KU.

Arthur, who said, "yesterday I would have signed with Baylor," had he held a previously scheduled noon news conference - putting off the session 24 hours to further discuss his options with his mom and grandmom - felt he needed to visit with KU coach Bill Self one final time before fully trusting his dream.

Thus he phoned Self at 10:45 a.m. Tuesday.

photo

Chris Park/AP Photo

Darrell Arthur puts the ball between his legs during a dunk attempt during the McDonald's High School All-American festivities in San Diego. Arthur signed a national letter of intent Tuesday to play for Kansas University next season, joining fellow McDonald's honoree Sherron Collins and former Free State High standout Brady Morningstar in next year's incoming class.

"I thought he was calling to tell me he was going to a different school," Self said. "I said, 'Have you made a decision?' He said, 'No, we are talking about it now. I'm calling coaches to answer any last-second questions.' When I hung up," Self added, "I didn't know where he was going to school."

Arthur asked Self if he was the type of coach who would push him hard in college, just like his high school coach, James Mays, whose tutoring helped Arthur earn two MVP honors at the state tournament the past two years at state champ South Oak Cliff.

"At the McDonald's game, St. Benedict's coach (Danny Hurley) told me I needed a coach who would stay on me. Coach Self is that coach,'' Arthur said. "He will push me and make me the player I can be."

That type player is an NBA player, Arthur indicating he'll play for KU "as long as it takes, probably one or two years" to be prepared for the pro level.

An hour and a half after speaking with Self, Arthur grasped his cell phone and sent a text message to the Jayhawk mentor, who had just left the podium after giving a speech on behalf of Big Brothers/Big Sisters at Maceli's Restaurant - 10th and New Hampshire.

Self, who noticed the name "Shady" (as in Arthur's nickname, 'Slim Shady') on his phone clicked a button and read the message, "I'm going to Kansas!"

A giddy Self left the restaurant and 'texted' Arthur back and also Arthur's mom, Sandra.

"He was the happiest coach," Arthur said.

Self didn't speak again with Arthur until about 3 p.m. when Self's cell phone clanged in his Parrott Athletic Complex office.

"Shady ... how you doin'? You OK man?''' Self bellowed, leaving his desk to chat with KU's newest player in an adjacent hallway.

Upon his return, Self was beaming, not just because he landed a power forward he ranks the "best we ever recruited," but because he didn't think the Jayhawks would win the recruiting battle.

Arthur, a friend of Keith Langford who attended Late Night With Roy Williams when he was in junior high, also was in the Allen Fieldhouse stands for Late Night in the Phog last October.

Yet Arthur didn't sign in November, prolonging his recruiting until the spring signing period.

"It feels sweet now because we felt we were not going to get him," Self said. "When he didn't sign early we felt, 'Oh geez we did all we could do and he still hasn't made a decision.' Other people came in late and we were still able to get him."

Indiana and Texas were KU's main competitors during the early signing period; Baylor and LSU the past month or so.

"LSU was hot," Self said. "They go to the FInal Four, lose a guy playing the same position (freshman Tyrus Thomas), who some are calling a top-three pick. Shady could slide in there and play next to 'Big Baby' (Glen Davis). They had a lot to sell. Baylor was there from the get-go."

As happy as Self was Tuesday, Baylor's coaches had to be stunned realizing the Bears on Monday were the choice of rivals.com's No. 16-rated player and No. 3 power forward.

"It was a real hard decision. Kansas is known as a basketball school," Arthur said. "Baylor is an up-and-coming program and I like the coaching staff. But I had concerns about how good we'd be at Baylor. I didn't know how far we'd get in the NCAA Tournament or if we'd go to the NCAA Tournament. Kansas has a lot of good players and I want to help them win a national championship."

Arthur's mom, who was heartbroken the news conference was canceled Monday - "I was sick to my stomach; I wanted to go ahead and get it over with," Sandra said - nonetheless was delighted a day later.

"I'm crazy about the coaches," she said of KU's coaches. "But it was hard. I also like coach (Scott) Drew at Baylor and that whole family staff. Everybody was great. That's why the decision was so hard to make."

She admitted she was a bit surprised her son chose to attend school out of state.

"For one thing, he always wanted to live in Texas," Sandra said. "I thought, 'Well maybe it's best to pick a school in Texas.' But it didn't turn out that way. It was difficult on him. I don't think he really got an answer until last night. He said he prayed and prayed. He said he kept dreaming all night. And Kansas kept popping in his head all night. That prompted to him to go ahead and pick Kansas."

A decision that had Arthur content Tuesday.

"I'll sleep well tonight," he said.

Dreams often deliver in big ways once the sun comes up

Darrell Arthur said he made Kansas University his college choice in response to a dream in the wee hours of Tuesday morning in which he was playing in a game for KU in full uniform.

Here, thanks to this week's fascinating article in "U.S. News and World Report" is a list of other individuals who made crucial decisions based on dreams:

  • Author Mary Shelley dreamed of the monster Frankenstein before she created him on paper. In her 1816 dream she pictured a "hideous phantism of a man stretched out and a scientist using a machine to bring him to life." She wrote the next day.
  • Beatle Paul McCartney woke up with the melody of the song, "Yesterday," in his head. He raced to the piano and began playing the melody. He later said, "Because I dreamed it, I couldn't believe I'd written it. The song holds the Guinness world record for most recorded versions (1,600).
  • Mired in a slump, golfer Jack Nicklaus one night during the 1964 Cleveland Open dreamed he was using a different grip. He tried it the next day, shot 68-65 and tied for third overall after opening with a 76. The grip stayed and he had a monster season. Nicklaus at the tourney told reporters he was embarrassed to admit where he picked up the new grip.
  • In the Bible, Joseph was crushed after learning Mary was pregnant during their engagement. He was ready to abandon her fearing she committed adultery. In a dream, an angel visited him, told him to not be afraid, that she had conceived through the Holy Spirit and would bear a special child. It shaped the rest of Joseph's life, said Fr. Gerald Kleba, who wrote the historical novel, "Joseph Remembered."
  • Iraq dictator Saddam Hussein in the 1980s dreamed the Iranians would launch an offensive through a large marshland. He ordered more troops there to the dismay of his generals. The Iranians did attack and the Iraqis prevailed. Hussein used dreams to base many other decisions.

Source: U.S. News & World Report

Comments

quigley 8 years, 7 months ago

Interesting how they chose to end a good article about KU basketball, with one of Saddams dreams.

Studogg 8 years, 7 months ago

phog-- Once again, you have managed to overshadow wonderful, great news with a negative comment. Arthur coming to KU is a good thing. Bill Self is building a juggernaut. You'll probably find something negative to say on the night we hoist the national championship trophy too. That's no way to go through life. Just be happy that we won this small battle and look forward to a great season.

muffaletta 8 years, 7 months ago

you guys should ignore phog ... he's so predictable.

Craig Lang 8 years, 7 months ago

It's funny about dreams. Last night I had a dream that Missouri students were telling me about how none of them like phog either. Turns out it was true.

phoga15fan 8 years, 7 months ago

Ignore phog and he goes AWAY!!! He's an MU idiot!!! Are you guys new here?

2000wolf 8 years, 7 months ago

I just can't believe that Phog never spells his user name correctly. It is supposed to be PHAG!

jayhwkfan4life 8 years, 7 months ago

Arthur coming in for KU is gonna make our team even more unstoppable. put him and Julian and Darnell or Sasha together and who will stop that!

milehighhawk 8 years, 7 months ago

phog,

you are more predictable (and far less pleasant) than a menstrual cycle.

get some new material buddy.

justdoit23 8 years, 7 months ago

More like Mizzou s no entry to the tourney in 07 or next two yrs or next 10 yrs or never...!!!

dsinger 8 years, 7 months ago

Look at me, I'm phog. I'm being contrary. That makes me cool. Of course, I'm sitting in my underwear, alone in Columbia and I only find happiness in being the center of attention on a website full of people who hate me. I don't have any friends, but I don't need them, since I am so engrossed with myself. I can't wait until the next kusports article so that I can post my generic and predictable response riddled with discontent and and random capitalization.

selfRocks 8 years, 7 months ago

i can't believe everyone justifies this "phog" guy- i'd much rather hear opinions about Arthur and the hawks than what you think about some guy who is obviously trying to irritate you...

Chris Shaw 8 years, 7 months ago

It's just a matter of opinion and I'm not completely sold on Bill Self yet. I think he is a little slow on decisions and in game decision making. Going back to Self's first year I don't think he handled Graves situation very well. Padgett should have never started from day one. Graves should have started. Did he have backage, yes, but not every player is the same and others are more sensitive than others. You have to know that as a coach. Jeff Graves had potential after his 16 point 16 board championship game and had the opportunity to build off that, but Self wanted to win over fans right away by playing Williams recruits. One other thought, I totally disagree on our walking the ball up the court against bucknell two years ago. You don't play slow down basketball when you are superior athletically. Having played college basketball I understand that, but I'm not sold on Bill Self yet. Just a matter of preference and opinion. One last thing, I am from Kansas and huge KU fan and I live in Charlotte, NC. Try listening to sports radio everyday to hear about Duke, UNC, Wake, NC State. I go insane and that's why my comments might seem insane to you.

kraus42 8 years, 7 months ago

We could hire her to be the AD at Missouri. She can't f*ck that up anymore than it's already been done. The only good thing that ever came out of Columbia were the pictures of Larry Eustacy drinking with all those 26 year old sophmores.

kraus42 8 years, 7 months ago

I tell you what. Most of us don't like/appreciate phog's comments, but at least the chick is more informed than most people who write for the paper. She's on here every day, multiple times throughout the day. Although she is very cynical, the b*tch does have a point. We, as a fan base are very lopsided in general. It's either our way, or the highway, until it really is the highway, then that was our way too. I thought Keith Langford was a POS when he was a frosh, now I pray he can end up making it to the NBA. Opinions change. Oh well, I like how she fires you all up. Keeps my work day entertaining.

tis4tim 8 years, 7 months ago

Holy s**t...Not to talk about things other than b-ball but I laughed at kushaw's last post

...another fellow KU junkie living in Charlotte too! I have been in Charlotte 8 years now but grew up in Topeka as a life-long KU fan. I too was sickened after the Williams soap opera with Kansas was brought to NC. I get tired hearing all his same dull aphorisms day in and day out living in the land of the Tarheel and the tobacco leaf. It's the same garbage he used to spew after every humiliating defeat and every embarrassing loss while at KU, only his jowls are much more animated in his older age. It's not any better listening to Mr. I-can-do-no-wrong-and-my-spine-is-a-metal-pipe at Duke either. I just wanted to say I understand your plight.

Glad to have DA on board...I was wrong about a shoe contract holdout after all but I can't think of a time when being wrong about something was so satisfying.

Rock Chalk!

Jeremy Bolinger 8 years, 7 months ago

2000wolf, i said that previously, but i got my comment removed. thanks for the support and its nice that somebody feels the same way about that dumbass as me!

DerekR25 8 years, 7 months ago

Hey tis4tim and kushaw- at least you two live in a basketball state. I grew up in Salina, KS and remember watching the Jayhawks play on TV while sitting on my dad's lap as a youngster. I've grown up with the Jayhawks and now I'm stuck here in Omaha, NE having to hear about Husker football, even when there is no football to be found-ANYWHERE!!!-lol Hell, the sport's page is so bad up here they covered mostly Big 10 basketball even though their a Big 12 state. I hate it. About the only way I can get a game is by listening to Jayhawk all access online or ordering the damn thing on digital cable. lol So instead I try to just make it down to Lawrence for as many of the home games I can.

acslater 8 years, 7 months ago

Ok, some quick reasons for everybody to stop responding to phog:

  1. His mysterious evil presence has reached mythical proportions to the point that I sometimes accuse people I don't like at parties of being "phog." This is exactly what he wants.

  2. You can't win an argument with someone stupid enough to use the same 4 things to respond to everything (especially when one of those arguments is that Bill Self was somehow responsible for a Roy Williams-recruited player deciding to start a fight at a bar).

  3. He uses the acronym LMAO constantly, which means he is obviously a 7th grade girl and it is not polite to pick on 7th grade girls.

  4. He can't even spell hypocrite correctly.

  5. You can tell he's running out of gas already. His first post involved quoting an Eminem song to make a point about basketball. Given that he clearly had to google those lyrics, I'd say he's running out of material.

Chris Shaw 8 years, 7 months ago

tis4tim.... Where in Charlotte? Do you know about the Ku alumni association that meets up for KU games. I would give my e-mail address, but I don't want "Phog" e-mailing me and trying to break into my account.

tis4tim 8 years, 7 months ago

kushaw-

i don't blame you for not posting your e-mail and it's tough to guess when certain viewers will be away from their screens for feeding and changing time but...

i'm right near carmel & hwy. 51...close to pineville. for some reason, i think i heard they meet up at coach's but i could be mistaken...

derekr25 - big 10 hell might have more planes than acc hell, though there seems to be some philisophical debate on that. in light of your mitigating circumstances, i'll forgive you the "two-faced crap" response to my shoe contract post yesterday...lol.

JBurtin 8 years, 7 months ago

kushaw,

That's a more reasonable stance than I was hearing yesterday. "not completely sold on Bill Self yet" is much different from just flat saying that he can't coach. Questioning his handling of some specific situations is also more reasonable. It's just frustrating to me that so many fans have jumped off the bandwagon because of two lousy games.

As for the specifics situations 1)dealing with Graves and 2) walking the ball up the floor against Bucknell.

If I recall correctly, he took Graves out of the starting lineup for diciplinary reasons. I don't know what Graves did, or if that was the right way to handle it. I think it was just Self's way of not allowing a troubled player's attitude to get out of hand. If you don't handle those kind of players with a show of strength, you can oftentimes end up with a "John Randle" situation where a player continues to get into trouble.

As for walking the ball up the floor. Wayne Simien was definitively our best offensive threat. He had a nasty groin injury at the time of the tournament, and Keith Langford had just healed from an ankle sprain. Only Keith knows for sure whether it was completely healed yet. Seeing as how he didn't put up the greatest numbers in that game my bet is that it probably had not. When all of our athletes were healthy we certainly had the more athletic team. At that time, our athleticism was pretty questionable. I think Self chose to walk the ball up the floor because that allowed Keith and Wayne to be in the game despite their injuries. The alternative was to play either freshmen, or walk-ons in their place.

It just so happened that on the same night we had to play a slowed down style of play. Bucknell was playing with nothing to lose and was shooting the lights out from three.

I think alot of fans also need to give an honest look at the team we were playing against that night. The very next year Bucknell finished the year in the top twenty five, made the tournament again, and made it to the second round again. The loss originally sounded embarrassing until I found out that Bucknell is actually pretty good.

Is the jury still out on Bill Self? Of course it is, he hasn't been here long enough to decide how he will go down in KU history. But like I said, if I was a betting man, I'd bet that his career will be very successful, and the memory of those two games will soon be dead, buried, and forgotten.

JBurtin 8 years, 7 months ago

A correction to my last post. Simien did not have the groin injury last year, that was the year before. Even so, Wayne was never the runner that Nick Collison was. With him being our only offensive threat down low, we had him in for alot of minutes. He probably couldn't have handled the fast paced game for nearly the entire forty minutes, and Kaun, Giles, and Jackson just weren't ready to play major minutes yet.

Self has also said that he has always encouraged running in a game. For some reason, Miles wouldn't push the tempo that year.

cobweb 8 years, 7 months ago

I'm glad that DA is a good religious kid. It means that he won't be a pain in the ass. As for God, I think he should be more concerned about Iraq or Darfur than basketball recruiting.

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