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Thursday, June 25, 2009

Offering no regrets

With draft tonight, Aldrich, Collins content at Kansas

Kansas center Cole Aldrich, left, entertains the crowd at the basketball awards banquet April 13 at the Holidome, next to Sherron Collins, center, and coach Bill Self. Aldrich and Collins recently expressed no regrets in electing to stay in school for another year. The NBA Draft is tonight in New York.

Kansas center Cole Aldrich, left, entertains the crowd at the basketball awards banquet April 13 at the Holidome, next to Sherron Collins, center, and coach Bill Self. Aldrich and Collins recently expressed no regrets in electing to stay in school for another year. The NBA Draft is tonight in New York.

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Keeping Collins and Aldrich a windfall for KU

The best recruiting job Bill Self did this summer? Keeping his two star upperclassmen on campus.

The 2009 NBA Draft has been called one of the weakest in many years.

“Just lousy or all-time terrible?” blared a headline on NBAdraft.net, in advance of tonight’s draft at New York’s Madison Square Garden, an event that will include no Kansas University players.

That’s right — a year after Brandon Rush and Darrell Arthur went in the first round and Mario Chalmers, Darnell Jackson and Sasha Kaun in the second, no Jayhawks will have their names called by NBA commissioner David Stern or deputy commish Adam Silver on ESPN.

KU’s Cole Aldrich and Sherron Collins, of course, could have been part of the proceedings tonight.

They elected to return to KU for their junior and senior seasons, respectively.

They are definitely NOT second-guessing their decisions even with this year’s draft so weak.

“No,” the 6-foot-11 Aldrich said with a smile, asked if he was thinking about the millions of dollars he might be guaranteed had he entered the 2009 draft, which is short on talented big men.

“I’m having the best time of my life right now. I’m excited for the opportunities I have next year, but I’m just having fun as it is.”

The 5-foot-11 Collins, who was considered a possible late first-round or second-round pick, also said he has “no regrets.”

“If I would have left this year, I think I could have made a team. I think I could have been a first-rounder through workouts,” Collins said. “To leave this place before you have to is crazy. We have great fans who love this place. I was not ready to give it all up yet.”

Collins and Aldrich visited with each other after the season, each admitting it was easier to decide to return knowing a fellow All-America candidate would be on board for a run at the school’s second national title in three years.

“Sherron and I talked about, hey we want to figure out what was best for both of us,” Aldrich said. “We both thought the best for each other was to stick around another year and play the game we really love playing. Once we figured it out we knew we (Jayhawks) would be pretty good. If we stay healthy and do what we’re supposed to do, it could be a pretty good team.”

Aldrich noted that KU’s Sweet 16 loss to Michigan State left a bad taste. The two did not want to go out that way.

“We had control of the game a majority of the time,” Aldrich said of a 67-62 loss in which KU led by 13 points in the first half and five with three minutes left. “It didn’t end right. That kind of sticks in our gut. It’s one thing that motivates us. We had a team that could go much farther.”

The 2009-10 team, which will top most preseason polls, could have a batch of players in the 2010 Draft.

Draftexpress.com predicts Aldrich will be the No. 4 pick overall and Collins the third pick of the second round. Also, Draftexpress.com says sophomore Tyshawn Taylor will be tapped No. 17 in Round One and freshman Xavier Henry No. 22.

“With what we’ve got coming back, we have a chance to be better than the national championship team of a couple years ago,” Collins said. “We’ve got a lot of bodies. We can play more bodies. I think we have a chance to be a great team.”

Notes

Collins carrying excess pounds: Point guard Collins, who stood 5-foot-11 and weighed 205 pounds last season, checked in at 5-111⁄2, 228 pounds Wednesday at the Deron Williams Skills Academy in Dallas.

“He’s got to get in better shape, do a better job of taking care of his body from this point forward,” KU coach Bill Self said, issuing his only comment on Collins’ weight gain.

Before heading to Dallas, Collins admitted it’s time to start preparing his body for his senior season. The season opens with the Oct. 16 Late Night in the Phog. Strenuous Boot Camp conditioning begins in September.

“I’ve got to be ready. I’ve got to get in shape, got to get in better shape than I am,” said Collins. “Early in the summer you get your break in and go home and see family (in Chicago) which I did. Now it’s all serious, not fun and games, but all serious.”

Youth served ... again: If there was no age limit, five high school seniors would likely be selected in the first round of tonight’s draft.

They are: Xavier Henry (KU), John Wall (Kentucky), DeMarcus Cousins (Kentucky), Derrick Favors (Georgia Tech) and Avery Bradley (Texas).

Draftexpress.com has four freshmen being tapped in Round One tonight: Tyreke Evans (Memphis, No. 8), Jrue Holiday (UCLA, No. 9), DeMar Derozan (USC, No. 10), B.J. Mullens (Ohio State, No. 15).

A batch of sophomores also are expected to go in Round One. Draftexpress says they are: Blake Griffin (Oklahoma, No. 1), Jonny Flynn (Syracuse, No. 4), James Harden (Arizona State, No. 5), James Johnson (Wake Forest, No. 11), Jeff Teague (Wake Forest, No. 19), DeJuan Blair (Pitt, No. 21), Austin Daye (Gongaza, No. 22) and Nick Calathes (Florida, No. 29).

Good decision to return: North Carolina’s Tyler Hansbrough, who would have been a certain first round pick after his junior season, can take solace in the fact he didn’t hurt his stock in returning for a senior season, one in which his Tar Heels won the national title.

Draftexpress.com predicts Hansbrough will be tapped No. 20 in the first round, by the Utah Jazz. Draftexpress does not believe Gonzaga’s Micah Downs, who started his career at KU, will be selected tonight.

Rogers working with Arthur: Former Baylor forward Kevin Rogers, who may hear his name called late in the second round, has been working out with former KU forward Darrell Arthur in Dallas. Arthur was the 27th pick in the first round of the 2008 Draft.

“He gave me his perspective on the league,” Rogers told the Dallas Morning News. "He asked me to work out and I jumped on the chance to get better.”

2008 revisited: In case you’ve forgotten, here’s a review of last year’s NBA draft, which involved five Jayhawks getting picked ... and getting traded.

• Brandon Rush was taken with the 13th pick by the Portland Trail Blazers and then traded to the Indiana Pacers.

• Darrell Arthur slipped all the way to 27th, reportedly because of concerns over the condition of his kidney. He was selected by the New Orleans Hornets, traded to the Portland Trailblazers, and then was dealt to the Houston Rockets, who traded him to the Memphis Grizzlies.

• Mario Chalmers was drafted by the Minnesota Timberwolves with the 34th selection and then traded to the Miami Heat.

• Darnell Jackson was drafted by Miami with the 52nd pick and then traded to the Cleveland Cavaliers.

• Sasha Kaun was drafted by Seattle with the 56th pick, then traded to Cleveland.

Comments

KGphoto 10 years, 7 months ago

OMG Sherron! 23 pounds in 4 months. Why put yourself through that? Hahaha. I mean if you don't go before Taylor and make the first round in next year's draft, you could always be an NFL fullback. Lorenzo Neal was 5'11" 245. You could tie that on over a good Thanksgiving.

I can laugh cuz I know you'll get back down. But damn. This sounds like a broken record. "He's got to get in shape" xcszzzhht "He's got to get in shape"

On a "high" note. It looks like you've also grown a .5 inch. Keep it up.

5DecadeHawk 10 years, 7 months ago

Can we trade Tommy Keegan, Doogie Arnett, and Chuckie Woodling?

If we could get a used wad of T-Paper out of the trade it would be a steal of a deal.

Rick Arnoldy 10 years, 7 months ago

If we throw Bill Mayer in the deal we probably wouldn't even have to take the TP.

Rick Arnoldy 10 years, 7 months ago

I'm not worried about Sherron putting on few pounds. He'll get them off. I think some of these who guys push themselves year-round are setting their bodies up to break down.

Timmay97 10 years, 7 months ago

Honestly......it is a broken record. Who in this chat board is concerned about Sherron Collins weight? Seriously? He will be able to shed that weight in two weeks during boot camp and eating right. By the time December rolls around, he will be at 210 at worst. He's fine!

As for the EJ article......I do see significant playing time for this kid. I don't see a scenario where Reed plays ahead of him. EJ will have to earn his minutes, but just the mere fact we got Xavier means we don't need Reed's 3 point shooting. Between Collins, both Henry's, Taylor and Morningstar, I don't see where Reed fits into the rotation. Fact is, everyone will have to "earn" their minutes.

As for the Morris twins.....I'm not sure about Markieff, but from what I hear through summer pickup games and workouts, Marcus is improving dramatically. This kid will be needed. If he can somehow improve his outside jumpshot and make it consistantly, he becomes VERY tough to guard ala Xavier.

It is amazing.....KU has at LEAST two solid players at EVERY position.

Aldrich/Withey Robinson/MK Morris/MC Morris X Henry/Little/Releford CJ Henry/Johnson/Morningstar Collins/Taylor/Reed

With the exception of center, Self has a three man rotation for every position. I don't know about the rest of you, but I would feel comfortable with any of these guys playing. The freshman will have to develop, but come Big 12 time.....this team should be absolutely unstoppable.

tennesseest 10 years, 7 months ago

One big name left off of the HS Seniors that would be drafted in the 1st round tonight: Lance S.

KANSTUCKY 10 years, 7 months ago

Tyshawn drafted before Xavier? I hope he has that kind of year. Step it up every game T.

Tim Orel 10 years, 7 months ago

With the state of this year's draft, where would Chalmers and Arthur have gone had they stayed for one more year (and yes, I think KU would have gone further, enhancing their stock even more). I'd like to know whether the extra money would have been worth it. Chalmers seemed like he was constantly being in the press for being a starter, so that's good, but I don't recall hearing about Arthur much here (other than that grade situation blowing up again).

ObiWan 10 years, 7 months ago

Thank you Cole and Sherron. You guys made a great choice! The fact that they came together on their decision shows how hungry they are for another Championship. As for Sherron's annual "growth:" after a long season of playing 35 or so minutes a game, the man deserves some time to lounge around, eat pizza and wings and drink beer like the rest of us do year round. Could you imagine college without these things? He has the metabolism of a very active 22 year-old, and can lose 20 pounds faster than I can lose 3. We've seen this before, and he'll be in tip-top shape by the first game. Sherron Collins is the absolute least of our concerns for this season.

Martin Rosenblum 10 years, 7 months ago

First subject: Can't we find a way to transfer the extra lbs from Sherron to Cole?

Second subject: Prediction about Griffin going much higher than Psycho T? I guess winning the NC doesn't neccesarily catapult you out of the bottom third in the draft. BooHoo for him. He's going to get his teeth handed to him in the league! By the predictions referenced in this article, the top five players to be chosen didn't even take their teams to the Final Four. Did Hansbrough really improve his stock by staying with Roy for his senior season and winning the title or not? I think not.

mcdscot 10 years, 7 months ago

for 5decadehawk to dis the people who do such a great job giving us KU BB info, would lead one to believe that not much was learned in school, not to mention the "5 decades" since!!!!!!

Greg Lux 10 years, 7 months ago

Quote "Tyshawn drafted before Xavier? I hope he has that kind of year. Step it up every game" This speaks volumes about the talent the Pro Scouts believe Tyshawn possesses. I always believe Tyshawn had a lot of talent but to be projected ahead of X mean he has a lot of ability he didn't show last year. This certainly puts CJ in a difficult position for playing time. With a starting lineup of Tyshawn, Sherron, X, Marcus & Cole. CJ is going to have to beat out EJ and Reed for any playing time. I am very interested to see this new improved Tyshawn. It's not often that you have 5 very viable scores on the floor at one time .. that starting lineup could be crazy to defend..

Lost_in_the_Phog 10 years, 7 months ago

"With the first pick in the 2009 NBA draft, the Los Angeles Clippers select Matt Kleinmann, from the University of Kansas"

lol

Scott Smetana 10 years, 7 months ago

Timmay, Great Lineup Reminder...WOW!!! How many days till tipoff?! In my opinion, our 2nd team could be ranked top 20. However, you forgot a key factor. Coach Self!! I feel so comfortable with him at the helm. He has the tough job of figuring out who gets to be on the court and the right 'chemistry.' Here's my vote for breakout stud for this year: Marcus Morris.

BabyJayBate 10 years, 7 months ago

First off, Tyshawn is going nowhere. No way he is good enough to go to the league after next season. If he does improve enough this year to be able to go to the league next year we are going to be a lot nastier than I first thought. I think we would win the title with him having a mediocre year, but if he is actually good then there is nobody in the country who stands any chance against us.

My Starting 5:

Sherron Tyshawn X Marcus M. Cole

Bench:

CJ Brady Tyrel Elijah T. Robinson Kief Morris Withey Little

Unbelievable. We could possibly go 7 deep on guards and 6 deep on bigs. All 13 could probably start at other major programs. It is going to be a special year. Self is going to have a tough time even cutting his rotation down to 10.

homer1986 10 years, 7 months ago

I keep seeing X penciled in at the 3, but I'm hoping that at least by the end of the season, he spends at least some time at the 2. I'm hoping Jeff W., T Rob, or MkM can fill the 4 and Marcus can slide to the 3. I know that means either X or Tyshawn comes off the bench, but both just want to win, right? :) So, here's my question: if Cole, Jeff W., Markieff, TRob, Marcus, Xavier, Sherron, and Tyshawn are our first eight, then who is ninth? And tenth? Mario, CJ, and Releford? EJ? Brady and Tyrel? Go Jayhawks!!!!

chicagoeddie 10 years, 7 months ago

man i would have gained some weight too with moms cooking! as long as hes good to go by september, there is no problems! =)

BabyJayBate 10 years, 7 months ago

homer1986-

First of all, Jeff W. will not be in the first 8 and Marcus is not going to play the 3. It is hard to say who is going to be in the top 8 right now. I think you will see Brady and Tyrell playing more minutes to begin the season instead of CJ/EJ, but as both CJ/EJ mature through the season, I think you will see Brady and Tyrel start to slide to the back of the rotation. If I was to take the top 8 right now it would probably be: Cole, Sherron, X, Marcus, Tyshawn, Brady, Kief, and Little. This will be Self's biggest problem this season is trying to squeeze in playing time for everybody. The talent level on this team is unreal. As good as there ever has been at KU in my opinion.

KEITHMILES05 10 years, 7 months ago

Self didn't bring in XAVIER to not play. Your post is laughable BABYJAYBATE! LOL XH will get his minutes and probably early on.

homer1986 10 years, 7 months ago

BJB, I'm just interested in the discussion, so nothing personal, but who're your four bigs in your regular rotation (and I'm more interested in end of season)? Are you keeping Mario down low? I like Mario, but if he's stuck at the 4 again this year, things aren't as good as I had hoped. I guess my thought is that in my dream scenario, if we had X at the 2 and Marcus at the 3, that would mean one of either Jeff, Robinson, or Markieff stepped up to hold down the 4. Maybe it's more of a dream.

BabyJayBate 10 years, 7 months ago

KeithMile,

Obviously you are a little confused. I never said X is not going to get minutes. If you will see above I have X in my starting 5 to begin the year. I simply stated early on that Brady and Tyrel will see more minutes than CJ Henry and Elijah. Obviously, you are unable to read and comprehend, but thanks for trying out. Good talk, see ya out there.

BabyJayBate 10 years, 7 months ago

homer,

My four bigs would be Cole, Marcus, Markieff, and TRob. I don't think Jeff is ready yet. I could be wrong, but I see Jeff playing about as much as Cole did his freshman year. As far as Marcus goes, I don't see him being talented enough to play the 3. When you have athletes like Mario and X playing the 3 who can be slashers and shooters then their is no reason to have Marcus playing the 3. His game is more suited towards the 4 spot. As for the guards, I don't see a need for X to play the 2. We will be stacked at that position with Tyshawn, Brady, Tyrel, and probably CJ at some point. At the one Sherron and EJ. Just my opinion, it could be totally wrong.

Daniel Rojas 10 years, 7 months ago

It's hard to tell whose gonna get lost in the shuffle this year. A great thing about HCBS is that hes gonna put the players on the floor that belong on the floor. He's not a politician of sorts. Look at Brady last year.......we lost alot ofkey players granted, but who sen Brady stepping up and contributing on both ends of the court! I think the 4 players u can ink in are sherron, tyshawn, cole, and xavier. After that its ALL up for grabs! And the freshman/divas that don't get the minutes they THINK they deserve will transfer next year!!!!!!!!

hawk316 10 years, 7 months ago

"To leave this place before you have to is crazy." -- Sherron Collins

This statement should be used in future recruiting and in decisions involving players making an early exit to the league. What a great endorsement of the KU basketball program and the University!

JJHawq 10 years, 7 months ago

don't sleep on Mario Little - that dude can flat out play - we just haven't seen it yet.

BabyJayBate 10 years, 7 months ago

JJHawq,

I agree. He is going to be far more explosive at the 3 than he was able to be at the 4. His game is definitely much more suited to play the 3. He can drive, slash, shoot the mid range, and also post up if he needs to. His post up will be far more effective at the 3 than it was at the 4. Plus, he should be 100% healthy this year. He could stand to work on the 3-ball if he is going to be playing more on the perimiter, but with X, Sherron, Brady, Tyrel, CJ, and hopefully Tyshawn being able to hit the 3 at a good % we won't need him to hit the 3-ball. We will need him to be a good slasher (ala Langford), play solid D, and rebound well for him to see a good amount of playing time and for us to be a "great" team.

kuman3343 10 years, 7 months ago

Just to let y'all know, I just got back from the UNC basketball camp (I live in NC), and Nick Bradford played for the former players for Carolina vs. the current players. He missed a three to win the game for the former players, then the next possession for the current players, they hit a three to win. He played pretty good D and made maybe three or four three pointers.

Joe Baker 10 years, 7 months ago

biggdogg5099 And the freshman/divas that don't get the minutes they THINK they deserve will transfer next year!!!!!!!!

Whoa bigdogg- What freshmen recruits are you referring to? Our KU freshmen are extremely willing to play when needed. They all have a strong work ethic and will do what is necessary to win the NC. They all know their roles. There will be no transferring and this team is bigger than their attitudes. You are obviously writing about some other freshmen on another team.
You're way off and please correct me if I misunderstood your post!

Martin Rosenblum 10 years, 7 months ago

Since when do former Jayhawks get to play on a Tarheel's team of any kind? So, as long as you once played for a coach even at another school, you're entitled to put on a jersey and play along with those players who, in this case, actually wore that disgusting, fuity blue color for real?

I guess CJ Henry could conceivably go to a game at UK and play against current players, right?

Better watch Ol Roy. He could put together a bad ass team with the likes of Collison, Hinrich, Jacque, Pollard, etc. This could start a whole new league of coaches and their players from their former schools. There could be a whole new ESPN channel devoted to games like these. What a concept!

Daniel Rojas 10 years, 7 months ago

Quintrell, Micah Downs, cj giles, and a few others i can't remember for obvious reasons. Guys like that. not calling any new comers on this team a diva, but Kansas is a high caliber school that recruits the best cuz we are the best. When they aren't the star anymore some players decide they would rather start at a lesser school than help us in practice....thats fine with me. I don't blame them. Sorry if the diva blast offended you true hawk!!!!

FairgroveJayhawk 10 years, 7 months ago

113 days until late night.

I can't wait to see what a healthy Mario Little will accomplish this season. You know he'll be coming in with a ton of desire and hopefully a leg at 100%. If Little is healthy I can see him pushing X for minutes the entire season.

jaybate 10 years, 7 months ago

"To leave this place before you have to is crazy." -- Sherron Collins

I would like to see this quote etched in a granite marble panel and put over the main entrance to Allen Field House. This quote is the essense of the living myth of Kansas basketball.

DoubleDD 10 years, 7 months ago

There is only two for sure starters Cole and Collins, everthing else is up for grabs. Don't think for a second X wont be sitting on the bench if he doesn't win a spot in the starting lineup. If there is one thing we all know about Self is he starts the best players. The one thing that will be different from last years is well be a rested team come March Madness. Cole and Collins looked tired and beaten by the end of the season, this year they will have talent and experience to spell them. Look for their minutes to go down a little. At the end of the day some players aren't going to get much playing time. Self usually only goes 8 to 10 deep, 10 pushing it.

If I had to guess.

Cole (duh) Collins (duh)

Talyor (he's a gog with to much up swing to sit) The Twins (with talent and year under their belt nonbrainer)

(That's 5 if your counting)

The X (Too much raw talent dude can light it up from three)

T. Robinson (he's future star with strong work ethic playing time yes)

(That's 7 if your still counting)

Little (?? Just a feeling ??)

Brady (is overmatched in about every phase of the game but has the heart of a Jayhawk)

The final spot goes tooo!!

EJ (just cuz I'm a fan)

None of this crap I just wrote will make sense when the season starts I'm sure. All I know is that this Jayhawk team is as balanced as any team I've ever seen. It's deep, experienced, and has a talent level that most schools can't match, but more importantly this team has a core of talent returning from last years sweet 16 run. Could imagine what practice games will be like???

LAJayhawk 10 years, 7 months ago

memhawk-

"Did Hansbrough really improve his stock by staying with Roy for his senior season and winning the title or not? I think not."

The answer is yes as he was a lottery pick tonight. Plus this draft was much weaker than last year -- especially in big men. He got to set the ACC scoring record, became the first player in the league to win first team All-American and first team All-ACC 4 times, and he got a national championship ring. Then, he wound up as a lottery pick and a guaranteed huge chunk of money (probably more than he would be making in his second year if he left early). I hate psycho T as much as anyone, but the kid made the right choice coming back.

KGphoto 10 years, 7 months ago

jaybate,

It's a boy!

... I think. Not sure really. What kind of name is B.J. bate?

Either way, congrats jb!

Hey BJbate. Glad you got to meet grandpa Decade before he kicks. He's a pill but he's just so cute when he's angry. You can always tell when he needs a change cuz he starts talking about dirty t. paper.

Dirk Medema 10 years, 7 months ago

BabyJay - You need to go back and read Coach Self's comments about Marcus. He called him (and Mario) a 3 that was playing out of position by necessity last year.

Cole played very litle as a freshmen because he had 3 NBA players in front of him. Jeff doesn't nor is he a freshman. My guess is he subs for Cole 10 to 15 minutes a game. He is the other C.

BabyJayBate 10 years, 7 months ago

dagger108- Where did Self say this? It would be interesting to see if Marcus can play the 3, but with Mario and X at the 3, I see very little or no playing time for Marcus at the 3 spot.

We will see on Withey. I don't think Bill will play 5 bigs, and I don't see Withey beating out any of the other 4. He might see some playing time early on in the year, but when it gets down to cutting down the rotation, I don't see him being a part of it. We will see...

KGphoto 10 years, 7 months ago

Withey and Morningstar are going to get their minutes for defense. Did we all forget that Self covets defense? That's why Brady fooled everybody last year, and made the starting rotation. (Go ahead, look it up. Nobody believed Brady would be seeing minutes after non-con. I remember one quote specifically. "If Brady is seeing these minutes once conference starts, we are in trouble". Everybody else agreed.)

Surely he has more competition this year. But he's also a year older. And nobody else has shown they can be a shut down defender yet. Not at the 3.

Also don't forget that as highly touted as X is, he is going to have to fit into the system. The system isn't going to change for him. He's probably the 3rd or 4th best player on the team, even though he was considered the 1st or 2nd rated recruit. And Mario is gonna have to stay healthy. So the 3 spot in my view is far from decided.

vmwskywalk 10 years, 7 months ago

4 reasons you won't see McMorris at the 3 spot on a regular basis.

  1. Depth: Putting him at the 3 would sacrifice depth at the 4 & 5. Other than Cole and Kief, the newcomers are untested and most likely prone to fouls.

  2. Ball handling: Look at any Bill Self team. He likes to have 3 ball handlers out on the floor. Plus he has a bunch on the bench.

  3. Holy Trinity (care of Jaybate): Self loves the 3 and it will open the lane for Cole. With McMorris at the 4 you will have the possibility of 4 capable 3 point guns on the floor. That also means more dunks for the Train.

  4. Defense: Can McMorris guard the 3 spot. Fact is, most teams will be smaller and quicker at the 3. You know how Bill is about his "D". That 6'4" guard blows by McMorris just once and it's "hasta la vista" back to the 4!

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