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Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Vegas prep to visit for KU’s Late Night

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Elijah Johnson, a 6-foot-2 senior guard from Cheyenne High in Las Vegas, will attend Kansas University's Late Night in the Phog on an official recruiting visit, Johnson told Rivals.com

KU coach Bill Self had an in-home recruiting visit with Johnson on Tuesday night. He's also considering Oklahoma, Texas, UCLA and others.

In other recruiting news ...

¢ Daniel Orton, 6-10 from Oklahoma City's McGuinness High, tells the Daily Oklahoman KU and Kentucky are his co-leaders. He will visit Kentucky on Oct. 10. He's also considering Oklahoma, Oklahoma State and Ohio State.

¢ Brewster Academy coach Jason Smith tells Zagsblog.net that KU leads for Thomas Robinson, a 6-8 power forward also considering Memphis and Southern California.

¢ Dominic Cheek, 6-5 from St. Anthony High in Jersey City, N.J., will also attend the Oct. 17 Late Night in the Phog, according to Zagsblog. Cheek has said he'll visit KU, Villanova, Wake Forest and Tennessee. He's also considering UConn, Memphis, Indiana, Pitt, Rutgers and Seton Hall.

Comments

jayhawkinATL 11 years, 10 months ago

I agree, flipborder02...anytime you have "advisors" involved, it should raise some eyebrows.

KU 11 years, 10 months ago

kvskubball.......I think your take on Wall's mindset is a little off. I read the other day a quote from him that basically stated he looks at his job as a point guard in the classic sense--getting teammates involved in the offense. He takes pride in his passing. He idolizes Magic.

Mr_Sandman 11 years, 10 months ago

Orton, Robinson, Wall. I like the chances of getting Orton and Robinson, not sure about Wall. I just don't think we are getting Henry for some reason.

11 years, 10 months ago

You got it, kvskubball. It's a tough guess as to what Wall is going to decide in the end, but it's easy to see how Memphis is connected to him if "World Wide Wes" is in the mix.

KU 11 years, 10 months ago

I know Memphis is bigger than Lawrence and has more to offer when it comes to nightlife, but that city is sooooo racially divided and violent that I don't know why young black players feel compelled to go there.Are there any black posters on here that could give us more perspective on this?

bmkjayhawk 11 years, 10 months ago

Landing a good combination of any of the following will still be a pretty good recruiting class:#1 John Wall#3 Xavier Henry#11 Michael Snaer#16 Dominic Cheek#18 Thomas Robinson#22 Daniel Orton#27 Elijah JohnsonJust hoping we don't strike out.

KU 11 years, 10 months ago

You have to respect your Self! Wow! The guy isn't shy about swinging for the fences in terms of seeking the highest rated recruits, is he?I can never remember any previous KU coaches bringing in this many top high school players in a single year.

bmkjayhawk 11 years, 10 months ago

It sounds to me that we have a really good shot at landing Orton. Let's put it this way: he's visiting Kentucky and Kansas on the weekends of their respective "first practices", so it might come down to which has the better atmosphere. I can't speak for Kentucky's, but I think KU's will be unmatched by most, especially this year.

flipborder02 11 years, 10 months ago

Just cause Wall has Memphis on his list dosent mean he is going there. Remember what he said when he got home from his visit "Kansas felt like home".

flipborder02 11 years, 10 months ago

<p>TheShiver.com was informed by sources, in North Carolina, said to be close to the recruitment of John Wall, that Kansas and Memphis have jumped up to become leaders in his recruitment. Wall, the RSCI Summer Rankings, #13 ranked player, visited Kansas this past weekend and attended the National Championship ring ceremony in honor of the 2008 National Champions. The source also mentioned that William Wesley, known in basketball circles as "World Wide Wes", is also involved in Wall's recruitment. Wesley, is known as an advisor and mentor to many different basketball players of the years.It still looks as if North Carolina State, Baylor, and Oregon will still be players in the Wall recruitment, but according to some, Kansas and Memphis have separated from the pack.

justanotherfan 11 years, 10 months ago

By the way, I'm speaking just for myself on this, obviously. I can't say how other people, or even these players, feel about the issue. Just my take on things.

jaybate 11 years, 10 months ago

  1. Marcus Morris--if Marcus can learn Self-grade defense to go with a reputedly sterling offensive repertoire, he could be gone, because most NBA teams are looking for the tall two, and Rush's play this year is going to make them want the tall two even more.5. Tyshawn Taylor--I have a hunch this guy is waaaaay better than everyone realizes at this point--Tom Crean had him under recruiting wraps for Marquette for years and the only reason Taylor surfaced on anybody's radar screen was Crean's moronic move to Indiana; Taylor's the same size as Rose; so, if he's got the trinity gun. playing along side Collins will do for him what playing along side CDR did for Rose--the best perimeter defender will often be on Collins and Taylor will have big nights.I know, I know, Sherron is the only probable, and he could get hurt again and remain on the bubble and have to stick another year. But based on last year's NBA draft, and given strong showings with the large amount of minutes all these newcomers are going to get, they've got the goods that the NBA often specced on last year.I think the reason sooooo many top recruits are prioritizing KU for their official visits is this: KU is VERY likely going to have four scholies to give and there is a significant chance that they may have six to give. Add in that the scholies at UNC and UCLA are pretty much taken already with super recruiting classes and this makes KU the place to go.KU could strike out in the quest for Henry and Wall for the reasons many have cogently noted.But there is, for the moment anyway, an outside chance of a Fab Four, a Fab Five, or even a Stellar Six!And when Bill Self is doing the recruiting with guys like Dooley and Manning double and triple teaming, I have to say: I increasingly like KU's chances of doing something remarkable on the recruiting trail this year.

flipborder02 11 years, 10 months ago

Memphis and Kansas are Walls top 2 teams. According to a source on The Shiver.

bmkjayhawk 11 years, 10 months ago

Random tidbit: nbadraft.net has Wall, Ricky Rubio, and Henry as the first three picks in the 2010 draft. If you're not familiar with Rubio, he's obviously supposed to be very good, and Bill Self went to Spain to recruit him to come to KU.

justanotherfan 11 years, 10 months ago

I think the reason that Wes can't be implicated on anything is this - he is not a Memphis guy. He didn't go there, graduate from there or give money to the school. So he can't be a booster by definition. He isn't an agent, and although he has a close friend that is an agent, he hangs out with so many other agents that it would be difficult to tie him to any one guy. Plus, as the articles indicate (here's another one by Henry Abbott http://myespn.go.com/blogs/truehoop?tag=who%20is%20william%20wesley? ) William Wesley knows everybody in basketball. College coaches, pro coaches, players, shoe people, commissioners, execs, everybody. But he doesn't work for any of them.Anyway, I like what is developing recruitmentwise. Here are my thoughts - just gut thoughts, not based on any inside info.John Wall - Goes to Memphis to reprise Derrick Rose's role as freshman phenom point guard.Xavier Henry - Goes to Memphis to replace Tyreke Evans and team with Wall in the backcourt.Dominic Cheek - Comes to KU to join fellow nor'easters and give KU a New Jersey type workman's grit.Thomas Robinson - realizes that KU is too deep with the twins, opts to head to USC where he can start immediately.Daniel Orton - ultimately swayed by fellow Oklahoman Self, Orton dons the crimson and blue.Elijah Johnson - Likes KU, but realizes that Tyshawn Taylor and Co. have the PG slot nailed down. Takes his show to Oklahoma.

Robert Brock 11 years, 10 months ago

Though I would love Orton to come to KU and understand that Self is a recruiting god, I am still a little pessimistic about getting him. We've got 3-4 big men now, and from what I've read he wants to come in and start from day one.

Jaminrawk 11 years, 10 months ago

Something tells me that Orton is gonna be a Jayhawk next year. We need another true center and that guy is big boy. I like Robinson a lot to but he seems more like a a rebounder/defender to me. Not that that is a bad thing. Personally, I think Henry, Orton and Wall could be the best trio of freshmen in KU history.

Nutflush21 11 years, 10 months ago

Man its gonna suck losing Wall and Henry to Memphis...

KU 11 years, 10 months ago

justanotherfan......Thanks for the insight. I could sorta see the larger minority population angle before. Your insight as to the way you were conditioned to accept violence as a way of life was enlightening.Do you find KU's campus to be relatively color-blind or do you feel like a minority in Lawrence? I guess what I'm saying is this: Are there environments that, even though you are in the minority color-wise, you feel "at home" because you can sense the people around you are not judging you by the color of your skin but by the content of your character?I realize this is a sports blog and you certainly don't have to address my questions if you don't want to.Underneath our skin, we're ALL Jayhawks, right?

jayhawkinATL 11 years, 10 months ago

I think our chances of landing Orton and Robinson are pretty good...not so much re: Wall and Henry. I think the writing has been "on the Wall" for some time that he is going to Baylor (since they went the "let's-sign-the-AAU coach" route). I still feel that C.J. being at Memphis sways Xavier. Let's hope I'm wrong!!!

grantmvb 11 years, 10 months ago

Wall is a great passer and is one of his greatest assets. He will distribute. Your assumption is wrong.

Lance Hobson 11 years, 10 months ago

It is simply amazing how many of these guys are considering Memphis. Calipari is great, you have to give him that. If Self ever bolts for the NBA I can see him coaching Kansas.BTW, the city of Memphis is not what is selling these kids, is Coach Cal and his record of getting guys to the NBA.

kvskubball 11 years, 10 months ago

Jamin...I may be wrong, but it sounds like Wall wants to be a shoot first, second, third, and pass last point guard. He doesn't seem to know how to spell TEAM. His vocabulary sounds more like "I". I'm interpreting what I've read, but again we heard the same kind of stuff about Brandon...If we can get three, X, Orton, and Robinson would work for me. We only have two schollys, but that will sort itself out.

flipborder02 11 years, 10 months ago

If this is right and Wes is involved then it gets a little scary.

justanotherfan 11 years, 10 months ago

bmk,I think we were too late to the party with Snaer, plus he's another 2 guard, and probably a lesser talent than our other targets (Henry, Cheek and Stephenson). I say Snaer probably goes to UCLA if one of their phenom guards this year turns pro (hence why he is delaying his decision). If not, he will probably sign late with a team that loses a guy to the draft. He's talented enough to hold out and be the best guard left available next summer after the early departures, which could mean a whole new recruitment process.As for Lance Stephenson, the Henry to Memphis-Cheek to Kansas storyline probably sends him to Kentucky. All three of those guys play basically the same position and have the same role, so I doubt any of the three goes to the same school.

11 years, 10 months ago

I believe someone may have posted this link before, but in case anyone is curious about William Wesley, this article provides some interesting color:http://men.style.com/gq/features/full?id=content_5735

jaybate 11 years, 10 months ago

justanotherfan,You are not justanotherfan; that was an amazingly insightful and illuminating post.

kvskubball 11 years, 10 months ago

txrock...Thanks for the article. So, sounds like Wall will be going to Memphis, hum?Calipari: "Wes is an ambassador for Memphis University"It seems like this would have to violate some NCAA rule, but probably what he gives recruits is priceless (As the commercial says, for everything else...) that is access to a network of "helping" people. Notice that when he took the player to the restaurant, he didn't pay for the meal, the president of the Cleveland Browns paid for it.Networking at its best!? I'm surprised Wes isn't the son of Elvis, married to Madonna, or a nephew of Queen Elizabeth. Wait does Wes know John or Barrack? If he does, then we should know who is going to be the next President.

bmkjayhawk 11 years, 10 months ago

justanotherfan:Any thoughts on Michael Snaer? I can't say where he is going for sure, but I don't think it will be KU. Seems we got involved too late.I could see your predictions coming true, but gosh I hope Memphis gets neither Wall nor Henry, let alone both of them.

justanotherfan 11 years, 10 months ago

KU,I don't mind addressing your questions. I'll answer your question two ways.First, it depends on the experience that a person has in the environment, particularly early on. I've never had a bad experience in Lawrence. I've heard stories from other people of getting harassed at bars from time to time, but I've never had any problems, so it has never made me uncomfortable. I say that to make the point that a person's early experiences will shape how they feel about the environment, even if the environment is relatively friendly. A bad first impression can sour that. There are cities that I have been to that I simply do not like because of my first impression (not just from a racial standpoint, but from an ordinary standpoint; stayed in a lousy hotel, had to work on a rundown side of town, got stuck in traffic for two hours). The other factor that contributes to the "at home" feel is the diversity of the background these guys come from. Take Sherron for instance. His high school was almost 100% minority, mostly black. For him coming to a place like KU, with 90% white students may have been a shock after being in classes where maybe 1 out of every 50 students wasn't a minority. Not saying that is the case with Sherron. I don't know him personally. Just using that as an example. If a kid is really used to having lots of other minorities around, the thought of being in a less diverse city could be extremely intimidating, even before they arrive to see the campus, meet the people, etc. This is a recruiting problem that plagues schools like K-State and Iowa State. Of course, all of these things can be overcome on the basketball floor, because for these guys basketball is a safe haven. I think for most of them basketball is the determining factor because that is where they will go when they have problems anyway. They will head to the gym to lift or shoot to get their mind off other issues. So ultimately, if Self and the staff can make guys comfortable, the other factors are minimized anyway. Only when all things are equal basketballwise do the other factors play in. It just so happens that with what Calipari has done at Memphis the last several years, recruits can see them on the same plane nationally as KU, UCLA, UNC and others. Memphis may not have the same history, but for an 18-year-old, most stuff that happened before 1990 doesn't mean much, anyway.

bmkjayhawk 11 years, 10 months ago

Lebowski, add Orton to your list. I believe his unofficial visit was last weekend, and his official visit is Late Night.

PhxKuFan 11 years, 10 months ago

Say whatever you want to say, but Self will get the players he wants.

kc_wildfire 11 years, 10 months ago

Did I read that correctly? Someone said that Sherron Collins is as good as D.J. Augustin? What a serious misjudgment of talent.

kvskubball 11 years, 10 months ago

To KU,If Wall idolizes and emulates Magic that's good. Magic scored, but he made his teams even better because he also got his teammates involved.I'm not going to get overly concerned about Wall, it seems that he is most likely a one and done. He is very good so I'd like him to come to KU, but...seems unlikely.To Lebowski,I agree, don't give up on the X! We're in his top 2, we still have a shot!To BMK,Rubio was Spain's starting PG at the Olympics.

justanotherfan 11 years, 10 months ago

KU,I'm a 26 year old African American male that grew up in Kansas. Now on to your questions.I've never really spent much time in Memphis, but my guess is that two things draw African-American players to Memphis. 1) There is a pretty good size African American population there. 2) Style of playMemphis is probably like a lot of southern cities. Atlanta comes to mind as well. Although the city has a lot of racial tension, both historically and currently, there is also a large population of minorities. Speaking as a minority, it's tough to almost always be in the minority. For a lot of these guys, they want to be able to go to "black" clubs, churches, parties, etc. It's nice to not be in the minority every now and then. There's a feeling of mutuality. The larger minority population in the city means that these guys will see other minorities at the grocery store, mall, etc. It makes them feel less alone. Mind you, I grew up in Kansas (Kansas City), but outside of the larger cities, there are relatively few minorities. I had a law school ask me where they hide all the black people in this state. He was only half joking. Secondly, violence just doesn't phase young African American males like it does most other people. Short tangent - that statement makes me sad as a young African American, but I think its true even for me. Things that should shock me, or at least offend my senses, don't hit me quite as hard I think they probably should. I think culturally young African American males (and Latino American males as well) are conditioned to accept violence from and against them. We see news of young guys our age getting shot, stabbed, beaten, arrested, etc. from the time we are young. By 18 or 19, that's a weekly (or daily, depending on where you grew up) event. By the time you reach college, you may want to get away from it, but you aren't scared of it. You just adapt and try to keep it from happening to you. Tangent over.Because violence doesn't affect young minority males like it would others, I doubt most of those kids could tell you that Memphis is a violent city. For some, life on campus (any campus) is actually much more safe and stable than where they grew up, anyway. Basically, the violence is a non factor in most of their decisions, and the racial tension is at least balanced by the fact that there are more minorities, if not overcome by that fact.

jaybate 11 years, 10 months ago

Posts above do not take into account who will be leaving KU after this season. We'll for sure have two scholies regardless, but probably more, because some more players could well leave early. When the pros see how well Rush, Chalmers and Jackson perform in the L, they are going to take more early risks on KU players.Also, persons are not really recognizing that KU's incoming frosh are probably a cut above what we have been used to getting and we have been used to getting some pretty darned good players. There probably is not a Rush in the bunch, but every guy has an NBA body for his position. The cascade effect is that we are going to lose some of these frosh to the L after only one year.My guesses on who will leave, after watching the NBA's willingness to draft size from anywhere in the world at any position this year, plus its lust for scoring-threat PGs no matter how small, or young, are:1. Sherron--with health, he's a great PG with a son to feed; every NBA team looks for them; Larry Brown took Augustin with a No. 1 and Sherron is already better than Augustin.2. Aldrich--Cole will be rough and green even at season's end, but he has the crucial-for-true-centers' knacks of rebounding, shot blocking and garbage baskets that can't be taught; so, if he's muscled up since last year, plays well this year; he will, at season's end, be better and have more potential than several of the bigs the NBA drafted last year; 3. Markieff Morris--again, at his height, if he can defend and board plus show some touch on the J this year, he's got exactly the "potential" the NBA drafts early;

JayCeph 11 years, 10 months ago

Not to belabor a point (and certainly not to discredit this productive dialogue) but...How does going to "from someplace that is almost 100% minority or mostly black (is this, by definition, even possible?)" to a place that has "90% white students" equate to moving into a situation that is, as it was stated, 'less diverse'?It almost seems like Sherron was actually moving into a scenario that would allow him to experience other people and cultures with a higher percentage of a greater and more diversified population than where he was coming from.Just scratching my head...

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