Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Jayhawks hitting weights

Strength coach says KU men’s basketball team motivated


Andrea Hudy’s cell phone started flashing in Kansas University’s basketball team bus an hour and a half after the Jayhawks’ season-ending loss to Michigan State on March 27 in Indianapolis.

“A group of them texted. They said they want to do what it takes,” Hudy, KU’s fifth-year assistant athletic director/sports performance, said of KU’s returning players wanting to “do what it takes” in the weight room to position themselves for a national-title run in 2009-10.

“We lost on Friday night. The guys were in the weight room on Monday,” Hudy added.

“They could have had the week off. They came in on their own. For somebody to lose ... to feel how much it hurts on Friday and to look 366 days into the future, there’s a lot of dedication there. It shows a lot of motivation. It shows they have something to prove,” Hudy added.

Hudy, who was part of eight national titles (two men’s basketball, five women’s basketball, one men’s soccer) during her 91⁄2 years at the University of Connecticut and one NCAA title so far in her KU tenure, senses something special is going on in the minds of KU’s returning players.

“We lift five days a week for 45 minutes to an hour. Some come in on Saturday, too. They have a championship mentality right now,” Hudy said.

She’s happy to report that 6-foot-11 sophomore Cole Aldrich, who was listed at 245 pounds last season, is a rock-solid 250. Markieff Morris, a 6-9 freshman, weighs 238, and 6-8 freshman Marcus Morris is 230.

“They are both up 20, 25 pounds,” Hudy said of the Morris twins.

Newcomer Jeff Withey, who is listed at 6-10 on KU’s official roster, “was 212 when he walked through the door (last December after transferring from Arizona). He’s 229. He’s a completely different athlete from when he walked in. He’s buying into what we are trying to do,” Hudy added.

Another Jayhawk is turning heads daily in the weight facility.

“Tyrel (Reed) hang-cleaned 302 (pounds) the other day. He weighs 185,” Hudy gushed of the 6-3 sophomore guard. “He’s one of our best athletes.”

Hudy will have an opportunity to brag on her Jayhawks with some of the top strength and conditioning minds in the country this weekend.

Hudy and Andrew Fry, chair at the Department of Health, Sport and Exercise Science at KU, are co-directors of the Midwest Sports Performance Conference, set for Friday and Saturday at KU’s Anderson Family Strength and Conditioning Center.

The conference will focus on “preparing an athlete to compete in any sport at any level. Instruction will include best practice training methods, student wellness education, programs for in-season and offseason preparation and ways to increase constant improvement at all skill levels.”

The two-day workshop offers a combination of theory and practice. International theory presenters will include Fry and Hudy, as well as Perry Koziris, William Kraemer, Steve Phinney and Mary Vernon.

Notables who will make practical presentations include Hudy and KU director of strength and conditioning Chris Dawson, as well as Marcelo Aller, Jeff Connors, Jerry Martin, Mike Nitka, Steve Plisk and Jeff Reinardy.

“This is a great opportunity for anyone interested in personal training, physical therapy, athletic training and sports performance at any level to learn and experience the latest methods from sports performance experts representing the nation’s most successful athletic programs,” Hudy said. “The conference presenters come from all levels and are some of the most respected in the sports performance industry.”

Hudy said the conference would be a great way “to bring people to KU and show them the state of the art facilities we have and that we are one of the top programs in sport performance.”

Registration begins at 7:30 a.m. Friday. The conference ends with round-table discussions at 5 p.m. Saturday. More details are available at


UjayK 10 years, 9 months ago

Don't see how news part 1 and news part 2 are associated. Why put them together? But the weight-room gangs sound promising. I remembered how 07-08 championship team were dominating physically in the paint. Not doubt that Coach Hudy will bring the best out of the current Jayhawks.

Lone_salina_kufan 10 years, 9 months ago

I think the most reassuring part of this story is clearly, there is no sense of entitlement with this team. Thats great to here, because sometimes "paper champions" can get complacent. The leadership will go a long way in a successful year next year.

RawkChawkJHawk 10 years, 9 months ago

Andrea Hudy has been part of NINE national championships!??? That's incredible!

Jonathan Allison 10 years, 9 months ago


I have a feeling that the Hudy and the strength coaches know what they're doing with the Morris twins. I imagine them being at a wholly different caliber athletically next year. I just hope it means that they come back dunking on everybody.

KUPROUD 10 years, 9 months ago

Tyrel understands he only sees significant minutes next year for if he makes dramatic improvement in areas other than jumpshooting. With hard work and athletic ability, who knows...don't close the book on him yet.

pmohr13 10 years, 9 months ago

Glad to hear that they are motivated. Hopefully it doesn't die down and last till next year. And if it does, hopefully that motivation carries on to motivate for the next year and so on.

sevenyearhawk 10 years, 9 months ago

Andrea Hudy is this athletic department's secret weapon!

Michael Auchard 10 years, 9 months ago

Awhile back I wrote that I wanted to see KU BBall articles all off season. I didn't care if it mean an article about what they buy for breakfast at Dillons. That still stands. Good job, LJW! Only five months or so to go!

vmwskywalk 10 years, 9 months ago

Agreed sevenyear. Lebowski, if you have any question as to explosiveness. Just take a look at what Hudy did for Darnell Jackson and Sasha Kaun. If you are able to watch video of them as freshman compared to their senior year, it's night and day.

DCJayhawk57 10 years, 9 months ago

Wow, with that explosiveness I hope to see Tyrel throwing down some dunks next year. He's hang cleaning over 1 1/2 times his bodyweight, so I'd imagine he has quite a good vertical, probably in the mid to upper thirties from a standstill. Why didn't we see any of that on the court last year, because he had to be pretty explosive at that point?

Good to see the bigs hitting the weights as well. I think they were in general lacking in explosiveness last year because their legs were just too thin for their size. With a stronger base they should be dunking everything next year.

KU b-ball excitement, it never ends.

Self4Prez 10 years, 9 months ago

RawkChawkJHawk - make that TEN national championships - don't forget last year!

speedy 10 years, 9 months ago

want to see the results of bulking up? see pics of wilt as younger player and compare them to later NBA pics when he was regarded as the strongest post player. me? i used to be able to lift 100 lbs up to my waist. lol

imzcount 10 years, 9 months ago

Andrea Hudy is a real jewel! btw, what is hang cleaning?

100 10 years, 9 months ago

Keep the KU basketball articles coming.

  1. How much weight does Self hope X will put on? Since he's about 20 lbs lighter & one inch shorter than Lebron James, does Self want him bigger? Does he put him in a stretching machine in preparation to compete with Lebron in a year and a half?
  2. Considering the multiple sources, including many of our eyes, listing Withey at 7'0", who measured him at KU? Is he 6'10 and seven eighths?
  3. Considering the Morris twins height, again, from afar appears five inches shorter than both Withey & Aldrich, how is one listed at 6'10"? Are tiptoes allowed during measuring?
  4. Let's have an LJW writer (or Jaybate) analysize all the combinations of philosophies & strategies Self can use next season.
  5. Let's have an article about undefeated teams, the 1923 Hawks & the 1976 Hoosiers. What does it take? Interview some past players. In their biased view, is it possible in this day & age (especially considering tenacious depth most teams who have come close never had which KU will next year).
  6. Where would an undefeated team put KU in terms of all time teams?
  7. How many potential NBA players do we have on this squad? (eight? Nine?)
  8. How many first rounders?
  9. How does it feel to Sherron & Cole to go for three things Lebron James will never have? (a ring, a college degree, another shinier ring)
  10. What kind of knicknames will we have next year? (X? Xman? Shman? The Trinitizer, The Human Chromosmal Factor, coalTrain, TheHumanBowlingBall?)

Good work LJW -- keep your advertisers happy -- keep us readers happy -- keep the bball articles coming all year around

Dirk Medema 10 years, 9 months ago

I seem to recall Danny's mom commenting in the teacher's lounge at Hillcrest Elementary that Danny determined that he would never be taller than 6-11 - because of the stigma that goes with being a "7 footer". My guess is there is some of that involved here. Does it matter (to anyone but bloggers) whether a player is listed as x or y.

Reminds me of watching the '08 Orange Bowl this week, and the question posted to Coach Mangino - "How tall is Todd Reesing?" The wonderfully appropriate answer was, "Tall enough to get us to the Orange Bowl", and a victory there as well.

Seems that the same concept applies here. How tall is Cole, Jeff, Markieff, Marcus, X, y and z?

Mostly glad to hear the guys are hungry and getting Hudied. She's been the foundation of past successes and will be for the future as well.

Rock Chalk!

Jaminrawk 10 years, 9 months ago

Nice to see that the Withey and the Morris twins are all up around 20 pounds compared to last season. We could really use those guys to wear down the opposing forwards and centers when Cole is getting a rest. I would have liked to hear that Sherron was there too, just so that he breaks the cycle of coming in overweight. No matter, there is no question these guys are on a mission for next season.

panalytic 10 years, 9 months ago

Good news in this story for sure. I agree with kuproud about not counting out Reed. I think he can continue to improve and have a positive impact for a couple more years.

How tall is Withey anyway? I wonder how he compares when standing next to Cole and Markieff?

I'm completely shocked no one contacted me to give a presentation at that conditioning conference...

justanotherfan 10 years, 9 months ago

If I had to guess, I would say that Sherron was probably there, but is on a different program than most of the others. Rather than trying to add bulk and muscle, Sherron is probably working on trimming down and keeping his lean muscle to build explosiveness while not adding bulk.

Sherron doesn't need to add ten or fifteen pounds of muscle - he's naturally got a big frame, even at his height. He's better to trim down and work on his explosiveness. With a little more explosiveness (and a trimmed down frame) he is less likely to get injured and probably becomes quicker and a more explosive leaper.

As for future pros on the roster, at first glance I count four, maybe five.There are quite a few possibles, though.

The first glance pros are (in order of likelihood) Xavier, Cole, Sherron, Thomas Robinson and maybe Withey.

Xavier is pretty obvious. NBA body, shooting touch, handle, etc. Cole would have been a lottery pick this year. If he's healthy and doesn't regress substantially, he will be a top 20 pick next season. Sherron is a second rounder, but he will make a squad. He's already proven in his KU career that he can come off the bench and provide a spark. He's got range, handle and big game cajones. Thomas Robinson seems like an NBA player with his rebounding tenacity. He's got a decent offensive game, too, but he could be a rebounding machine in the NBA. Withey is an away from the basket center. Paired with a banger at power forward, he could have a career. The challenge for him is to guard both inside and out, which is why he's a question mark.

The possibles are pretty numerable, though. Both Morris twins could get a look if they can come up with more complete, consistent games because of their size and skill level. What I saw in flashes from both of them is potential NBA game if they can play that way all the time. Unfortunately, they are both a long way from that right now.

Elijah Johnson has the athleticism to play in the NBA, but he has to find a position (1 or 2) and prove that his jumper is at least passable. If he does that, he will play in the League.

Tyshawn Taylor isn't as athletic as Johnson, but he has to show the same types of things. He's kind of a hybrid between Mario Chalmers and Elijah Johnson. Not the athlete that Johnson is, not the shooter that Mario is, but has bits of both in his game. If he gets that sorted out, in another couple of years he could be an NBA prospect.

Jonathan Allison 10 years, 9 months ago

I'm with imzcount, I don't know exactly what it means to hang-clean 350 lbs, I assume it's something like lifting a barbell off of the floor.

I'm sure that Sherron is in there, it's just got to be more difficult to measure his progress since he's pretty much already at his ideal size, and can probably outlift everyone else on the team.

emillasap 10 years, 9 months ago

To whom it may concern:

Kobe: 34% from trey D Wade: 32% Ray Allen: 40% Pierce: 39%

Who is better?(obviously not enough info)

I believe the overall trey percentage is a skewed stat when referring to wing/shooting guards. The percentage is clearly a function of "good" shots v. "bad" shots. Alpha dog scorers who have no choice but to take over games inevitably are forced to take more "bad" shots ala Sherron this year. Perhaps that has something to do with Xavier's "questionable" trey shooting his junior year. Maybe when good shooters convene on one team they get more "good" looks and their all important % is above or near the holy grail of 40%.

I am purely making a statement based on inductive thought and I dare say you would be hard pressed to find an empirical study looking at the correlation between multiple high percentage shooters when together on one team as opposed to when separate. I would wager, ceteris paribus, good shooters get statistically better when around other good shooters.

Suffice it to say Xavier paired w/ Sherron and Moringstar/Reed(Maybe or hopefully even Little/Marcus) should prove my theory of a synergistic relationship.

Just food for thought.

mbmerriman 10 years, 9 months ago

plastic, imzcount

hang clean is when you hold a bar at your waist holding it with your knuckles pointed out and your inner wrist pointed in. When you lift it you rapidly snap your wrist and lift at the same time so that your knuckles are now pointed at your head and then you lift the bar over your head. It is a very tough lift and very impressive

bristowhawk 10 years, 9 months ago

Here is a link to an explanation of hang clean. Really impressive for him to be able to do it.

Rock Chalk

vmwskywalk 10 years, 9 months ago


Not quite right. It is the same lift that you see in the olympics minus the lift over the head. You stop when you have the weight under your chin. Lifting the bar and weight over the head is way too dangerous. The lift requires strength (obviously), coordination, and explosiveness.

cklarock 10 years, 9 months ago

Andrea Hudy is the WOMAN. She really is our not-so-secret weapon. The team has been fantastically conditioned since her arrival. Another Lou Perkins coup, IIRC.

Glad to hear that Tyrel is gearing up to prove some people wrong again next season. Rock Chalk Jayhawk!

the78phoenix 10 years, 9 months ago

I liked to see these guys at the following weights come start of next season-

Cole- 255 Sherron- 190/195... I think he could lose a couple pounds to get a little quicker and have better stamina. Not saying he isn't quick, however... Marcus- 235 Markieff- 240 Tyshawn- 190 Tyrel- 190/195 Brady- 190/195 Withey- 235

Not that weight is everything, but the strength & explosiveness that is added with the muscle weight is beneficial for all facets of hoops.

Eurekahwk 10 years, 9 months ago

The lifting over the head is the 'jerk'. I don't think she said anything about him clean-jerking it. None the less, I always hated cleans. The most I ever did was 185 while carrying a body weight of 170 lbs. Ten years after high school, I now understand that hang cleans are the most true test of strength. And the most important for any sport. If you don't have good core strength, you are junk. Everyone always likes to ask what you bench, but that's not where its at. Tyrel Reed is a MAN when he is cleaning 300 pounds. I bet none of you Reed bashing patsies can even lift 300 pounds.

Joel Hood 10 years, 9 months ago

Back in the day (ok - 25 years ago) we did power cleans for football strength training. Same as hang cleans, but you start with the weight on the floor (hang cleans lead to fewer injuries.) I'm bigger than Tyrel and can attest that 300+ lbs is a very impressive lift for a clean.

JayhawkCasey 10 years, 9 months ago

100, Easy with the LeBron comparison for X. From everything have heard and seen say LeBron is 6'9" and 260+ and X is 6'6" and 220. ESPN list him less than this, but last year LeBron grew some and that kept him off the floor shortly. I don't think X is every going to get to the LeBron level; he is a beast at the highest level competition. But I like your enthusiasm about our teams potential.

Scott Smetana 10 years, 9 months ago

Great article... now I'm motivated. As a die hard fan, I'm hitting the weights ASAP. We all need to be in great shape by this fall.
I'm hoping to improve my verticle to 10 inches for high-fives and get my biceps in shape to hold a 64-oz mug for several hours. I also want no rolls flabbiness when I chest bang my friends during the tourney.

You all get your lazy rears away from the computer and get to work too!!

100 10 years, 9 months ago

Lebron is 6'7" and a half. Google it and check your sources. Many say "he looks 6'9"...

By the tape he's 6'7", 250 lbs

JayhawkCasey 10 years, 9 months ago

I have never seen 6'7" anywhere, but your source might be correct. But he is pure muscle and 30lbs heavier than X. 30lbs of muscle is a lot to put on and I would imagine LeBron has a lower body fat index.

100 10 years, 9 months ago

Yeah true. All announcers will say 6'9 just for the obvious glamour that is Lebron.

Same used to happen for MJ. We all thought he was 6'7 for years.

The truth came out only later he was closer to 6'5 (if that according to some sources).

It's all about The Zeus's of the NBA making a name for themselves, at times the networks helping them along the way

JJHawq 10 years, 9 months ago

X couldn't hold Lebron's jock. No disrespect, as nobody alive can do it either.

Tuskin 10 years, 9 months ago

Here's another article suggestion for the professionals. I want to read a long article on Coach Manning's work with the bigs. Even if Coach Manning won't talk (as I've been told in the past), interview each of the bigs at length.

100 10 years, 9 months ago

No one is saying X could beat Lebron in a Game of one on one. At least not this year.

Leaving high school Lebron was one inch taller than what X is now.

And he was 15 lbs heavier.

I'm just wondering what Self's plan is for X's body weight goal, especially since after a few years of strength training at both KU & the NBA, X against Lebron could be a really big matchup.

Let's put it this way (even if X only stays a year at KU): if in six years X has bilked up to 240 & has increased his explosion, who is to say X wouldn't dominate that matchup against a nearly 30 year old Lebron?

Asked another way: if it is "about getting ready for the NBA while going to his dream school", since we have the premier strength trainer in the world along with Self's philosophy of "soft doesn't cut it here", what is X's ideal weight to enter the NBA?

And can he lower his fat percent while adding 20 lbs?

aerohawk 10 years, 9 months ago

I know it has been said a number of times already, but I got to give props to Tyrel. That is a very impressive lift.

waywardJay 10 years, 9 months ago


Interesting theory on shooters.....

Billy thomas used to be the best three point shooter in Kansas History..... and he had no one..... aside from haase pre-wrist injury to compare to....

Boschee took the title from Billy with marginally better shooters ( thats not factor two of the more disappointing jayhawk guards in recent memory in bradford and gregory ) having robertson early and hinrich late.....

even russ rob shot better as the younger kids matured.....

Probably has somethign to do with the defensive intesity on the three pooint shooter in question.....

When you have two wings that can shoot near 40 percent.... the defense can't select who they will leave open..... because hell... either of them are deadly.... there by leaving better shoots for those around them..... it also forces teams to play more man to man... leading to more foul difficulty and more free throws for shooters ( which usually trains there eyes better.....

X I expect will be around 36-38 percent.... no matter WHo the kid is... he will struggle from distance his first year.... it's proven even in the NBA.... you struggle your first you get used to faster players around you .... the shooting distance change... playing in larger arenas on a nightly basis.... and of course..... the over all rhythm change in the pros......

hell it's even been proven in college.... great shooters can struggle for the same reason... and factor in that most teams play better defense ( most... i don't include ACC teams ;) ) and have more athletic players in general

If that makes sherron go up, brady go up, and tyrel go up.... I don't see X's drop being an issue..... I think we will have enough threeballs to go around next year.....

If we can get 20 from sherron 20 from cole and 12-15 from X..... im sure the other starters and bench will pick up the necessary 25 to score us 80 a game.... we score 80 a game.... we will not lose..... Bank that..... we average that.... we will hoist a banner next year

waywardJay 10 years, 9 months ago

Tyrel proved much to me last year.....

300 pounds from that lift is impressive....

Can we increase his foot speed, please ????? We need him faster and tougher ( we are seeing tougher for sure ) come next season.

justanotherfan 10 years, 8 months ago

emillsap makes a good point, but I want to go a little further.

This year for instance, look at our three point numbers. Collins - 37% Taylor - 36% Morningstar - 42% Reed - 39% Little - 37%

Which is more impressive? Well, to quote Bill Simmons' article on, I have to go with Collins, for the same reasons that Simmons taps Pierce.

"Which brings me to another way that stats need to get better: I guarantee that 99 percent of Ariza's 3s in 2008-09 were taken when he was wide open. Same for Jason Kidd's, Daniel Gibson's and others'. But guys such as Wade, Pierce and Kobe routinely jack up 3s at the end of the shot clock, at the end of games with two guys on them, at the end of the quarter, in "last shot of a tie game" situations and so on. If someone such as Pierce shoots 35 percent on 3-pointers, actually, that's infinitely more impressive than Ariza's 32 percent. So why not make "wide-open 3-point percentage" a statistic? If you have time to set your feet, lock and load to get off a good shot, that's a wide-open 3."

Simply put, some guys threes are shot with their feet already set, hands already in the shooting pocket, and no defender in position to challenge. That's how Reed and Morningstar got the vast majority of their threes, and to their credit, they knocked them down. But Collins had to take many more threes while guarded, with a hand in his face, off the dribble, etc. His 37% is just as impressive (if not more so) than the 39% from Reed and the 42% from Morningstar, especially when you consider that his drives are what got Reed and Morningstar open for their numbers anyway. That's not taking away from Reed and Morningstar at all. It's actually crediting Collins.

I am pretty sure that since X will have Collins getting him better looks, his 3pt% will go up. Same with EJ. At the same time, Collins' 3pt% will rise because now, instead of having to create every possession, he has EJ and X to help create, so he will get better shots, too. Remember, he was over 40% from three as a freshman.

mandomax 10 years, 8 months ago

Withey was listed at 7 foot coming out of high school, according to Hudy said he was 212 when he came to KU, but rivals had him listed at 225. Interesting, I wonder if Rivals pads numbers up to make their rankings look better (Withey ranked #36 in the country class of 2008) or if KU downplays numbers (7' to 6'10 and 225 to 212) for matchup reasons

emillasap 10 years, 8 months ago


I agree about Sherron. We are saying the same thing I think.

Joel Hood 10 years, 8 months ago

ralster - Tyrel dunks quite easily during Late Night warmups. Huge difference between warmups when your legs are fresh and late in a game when your lateral speed and urgency of the points make a layup the smart move.

rges 10 years, 8 months ago

wow... Tyrel 302 hang clean... that is incredible! Keep hittin em hard. Championships are won in the summer and earned during the winter!

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