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Thursday, November 5, 2009

Senior Little ponders sitting out this season

Kansas forward Mario Little drives to the bucket against North Dakota State forward Dejaun Flowers during the first half Friday, March 20, 2009 at the Metrodome in Minneapolis.

Kansas forward Mario Little drives to the bucket against North Dakota State forward Dejaun Flowers during the first half Friday, March 20, 2009 at the Metrodome in Minneapolis.

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Mario Little, the subject of Kansas University’s first “Pop-Up Video” of the basketball season, gives the production mixed reviews.

“I saw it. It was pretty funny,” Little, Kansas University’s senior guard/forward, said.

He was referring to a short spoof of the VH1 television show, which was shown on the videoboard during a timeout in the KU-Fort Hays State exhibition game Tuesday in Allen Fieldhouse.

Pop-up bubbles or info nuggets containing trivia on Little’s life highlighted Tuesday’s piece.

“None of that stuff was real. They made all that up, so don’t believe it,” Little said.

The video lightheartedly listed some of the famous “Little’s” throughout history, including rappers Lil Jon and Lil Wayne, as well as Little John of Robin Hood fame and singer Little Richard.

One pop-up bubble said Little was as smooth as yogurt and followed that Little’s favorite flavor was “Tutti Frutti,” — the Little Richard song of the same name playing in the background.

“Not true. They tricked me into saying that,” Little said with a laugh.

Whether Little will be able to watch Pop-Up Videos of his KU teammates in future Jayhawk games — or instead have to pay close attention to coach Bill Self’s words in huddles — has yet to be decided.

The 6-foot-5 Chicago native is considering red-shirting — practicing but not playing in games until the 2010-11 campaign.

“It’s still up in the air. I want to play. Of course I want to play, but I want to make the best decision,” said Little, who is in the mix of making coach Bill Self’s nine-man rotation.

“I’m kind of torn in between. I trust coach and the decisions that he makes. Hopefully everything will play out well.”

Little, who is healthy following offseason surgery to repair a stress fracture in his lower leg, said “I don’t know” when asked if he could handle sitting out the upcoming season.

“It’s tough regardless, not playing,” he said. “Just shooting around today, it was hard for me not to think about getting out there.”

Little would have been ineligible for a red-shirt had he entered Tuesday’s exhibition game, according to NCAA rules.

“I didn’t want to throw it all away by playing (Tuesday),” Little said of KU’s 107-68 rout of the Tigers.

He said he was impressed with the play of KU newcomers Xavier Henry, Elijah Johnson and Thomas Robinson, who combined for 29 points, 10 rebounds and five assists.

“They got all the nerves, the bugs, the butterflies out of them,” Little said. “They all came in and played with confidence, which is good.”

More on red-shirting

KU sophomore Travis Releford and junior Conner Teahan also sat out the game as they consider red-shirting.

“It’s something we’re trying to find out what is best for the team. We are trying to play it safe so none of us are playing,” Teahan said of the three KU candidates.

Remaining at KU a fifth year would fit into Teahan’s educational plans.

“I am probably going to have to stay an extra semester just because I am getting into business school a little bit late,” said Teahan, a 6-5 guard out of K.C.’s Rockhurst High.

He acknowledged it’s been tough not being in the playing rotation.

“It’s been frustrating just because I really have been sitting out the first two years of my career,” he said. “It’s one of those things I always wanted to play here and I’ll do whatever it takes to play here. If that means sitting another year, I’ll sit another year. If they need me now ... I don’t want to waste a year. I think I can contribute sooner or later and that’s what I’m focused on.”

Teahan has been impressed with all the talent Self and his assistants sign on a yearly basis.

“I sit there on the bench thinking, ‘Geez, I’ve been working my butt off for the past two years and it’s just like we keep bringing ’em in,’” Teahan said. “It’s one of those things where you can’t get mad at that. As a fan of KU, I’ve been trying to see KU succeed my entire life. Is it frustrating for me at times? Yes, it’s frustrating but I want us to do well so that’s all that really matters.”

He’s worked hard on his game.

“I feel I’ve been executing and gotten a lot better, a lot more athletic and have been able to do something on the defensive end which has always been my struggle as everybody knows,” Teahan said. “Hopefully I’ll continue to improve.”

Comments

KEITHMILES05 10 years, 3 months ago

It's a shame Self made Little play last year when he wanted and should have red shirted.

FlaHawk 10 years, 3 months ago

It ws Little's decision to play last year. Just like it will be this year too. I personally think he should red shirt and probably should have taken a medical red shirt last year, but that is 20/20 hindsight.

He is not going to get many minutes this year for sure and he knows it.

FairgroveJayhawk 10 years, 3 months ago

I can see both Releford and Little benefiting from a red shirt this year more so than getting screwed with the decision. I can see both playing larger roles next year if x leaves. Hindsight is 20/20, hopefully their decisions will be good for them and help them achieve their goals.

Don't know much about Teahan other than the 12(?) consecutive 3's he hit two years ago.

jcsmith 10 years, 3 months ago

Unfortanately for Mr Little and Mr Teahan, that's the risk you take when you chose to play at an elite program like KU. At KU, you have two types of players. Those with great skill and those with elite skill. I would say 90% of the starters from the other 331 division 1 programs would not even see a spot in KUs rotation. That's the risk a player takes when playing fo a program that is able to recruit elite talent year in and year out.

John Brown 10 years, 3 months ago

I think the extra year will benefit them and next year's team. Self will continue to recruit elite players. It is highly likely that a magority of the kids coming into the program each year wont be playing 4 years. Therefore the maturity and experience of Little, Releford and Teahan will be needed next year more than this year. I think that it is highly likely Self will get commitments from Barnes and Knight. I also think that next year will be as good as this. Withey, Johnson, Morris, Morris, Robinson, Taylor?, CJ, Morningstar, Reed, Little, Releford, Teahan, Woolridge,...

ParisHawk 10 years, 3 months ago

Looking at the roster, I see 12 guys who could conceivably get minutes first semester : 4 bigs, 3 wings, 5 guards. I think you want to be two deep at each position, so in theory you could redshirt one wing and one guard.

Redshirt one wing: this means redshirt either Little or Releford, but not both. Redshirt both and suddenly we're down to a freshman (X) and a big-wing (Marcus). That's not depth.

Redshirt one guard: only Johnson is eligible and Self says he's too good.

So first semester we're looking at 4 bigs, 2 wings and 5 guards. Minutes will be scarce for the guards : good luck, Tyrel and CJ !

Second semester we'll have 4 bigs, 1 big-wing, 2 wings, 1 wing-guard and 5 guards. Withey's arrival will free up Marcus for minutes as a wing, and Brady will compete for that spot too. Minutes will become scarce for the wings: good luck, Little/Releford and Brady !

Conclusion: Little should redshirt. If he doesn't, he'll provide depth first semester and may get squeezed out next semester. What a disappointment for him. Now if that happens to Releford so what, it's better experience than redshirting and he can share the wing with Mario next season.

As far as Teahan is concerned, he's not in the rotation this year or next, so it doesn't matter. Sorry, Connor.

jaybate 10 years, 3 months ago

I am an early and continued advocate of throwing Little a red shirt.

From Self's POV, Self would do it to secure the three next year.

The downside for Self, is that if he red-shirts Little today, Barnes, or another top 3 prospect, very well might not choose KU. Self is probably waiting on red-shirting Little to see if Barnes chooses KU. If Barnes chooses KU, then Little probably rides the bench this year and departs a footnote. If Barnes goes elsewhere, Self probably can't do better than Little next year and Little gets a red shirt. Brutal calculus.

From Little's POV, he should red-shirt to help him get a degree, not just to play.

Little has game, but he does not have enough game to get along in life without a degree. He can play Euro ball 5 to 8 years, but beyond that he needs a degree.

Frankly, any number of 3s, even some on our team already, could jeopardize his PT next year.

Study hard, Mario, and hope for a red shirt.

Joe Baker 10 years, 3 months ago

Jaybate- The downside for Self, is that if he red-shirts Little today, Barnes, or another top 3 prospect, very well might not choose KU.

Exactly! I would think that if Self has any indication of Barnes' plans, he would not redshirt Little unless he wants to stack 2011 with Barnes and Little.

I thought maybe if Little plays this year, Barnes signs. If Little redshirts, Barnes is leaning toward Duke! Then again, one may not have absolutely anything to do with the other!! LOL

kvskubball 10 years, 3 months ago

jaybate...and More importantly Mario Little (if he reads these posts)

If X has pushed Mario to the bench, which I think is correct analysis, then why would a top 3 think he couldn't? I don't see Little's choice affecting Barnes' decision. I think Barnes is confident enough that he wouldn't drop KU because they have a player who was 'redshirted' to make room for a OAD this year, if that scenario plays out.

A 'little' over analysis on Barnes' thinking, IMO.

I think that Mario has unfortunately run into a perfect storm, where Coach Self has, and will continue to recruit top talent to KU.

Mario, a Little advice, do what is best for you. Coach Self and KU will take care of themselves, you need to do the same! I happen to think you made the wrong decision for yourself last year. It was the right decision for KU, we desperately needed experienced players, which were in short supply. You gave it up for the team. Now, it's time to do what is best for you. I think Coach will support your decision.

For you, this is a very tough choice. This year, you will probably play very little, unless someone gets injured, if you don't redshirt. If you play next year, it would appear you will get more playing time. That is true, IF...Coach is not successful in recruiting a top 3 to come play for KU next year. We're still in the hunt for Barnes, though probably on the outside looking in.

I think you have something like 2 weeks to still make your decision after the season starts, as long as you don't play in games. If Barnes chooses another team, then I think it would be best for you to redshirt, because he is most likely the only 3 that could push you to the bench again, next year. Then the competition will be from within, with Marcus and Travis being the competition.

I see the best choice as being a redshirt, with the 'possibility' of seeing increased PT, next year. Again, redshirting this year doesn't gaurantee more PT next year, it just seems it is more likely.

I do agree with jaybate that you should take your education seriously. You probably will be able to play Pro ball somewhere, and make some money at it, but plan for the future. Your injury should show you that sports is a fickle profession. So getting a degree is the wise thing. Good luck with a tough decision!

kvskubball 10 years, 3 months ago

By the way, I don't see Mario 'doing what is best for him' as being so selfish as to be detrimental to the team. If he makes the right decision, whatever he decides that is, I think that actually helps the team. I think once you're on the court, you need to play team ball, but in the decision of how to get yourself on the court, it is every man for himself, and you make the decision that you think is the best one for you.

Joe Baker 10 years, 3 months ago

Zagsblog has the latest report on Barnes' announcement.

Johnston said he hopes to know when the announcement will take place by Monday.

“We’re shooting for that date [Nov. 13] but still that’s not even confirmed,” Johnston said.

Tony Bandle 10 years, 3 months ago

The action that is "what's best for Mario" has already passed and that was red-shirting last year. His sacrifice got us to the Sweet Sixteen versus maybe the second round without him......a steep price to pay with a year of eligibility of an elite athlete.

However, we must all remember, Calipari was still the coach at Memphis, the Henry's were going to be Tigers and the young Hawks were shaky. Life is a roll of the dice...sometimes you roll a seven and sometimes you roll a snake eyes.

Mario, take the next best shot....redshirt...get truly 100% healthy ....compete for the 2010 team leadership role.....get your degree.

Joel Hood 10 years, 3 months ago

Is there really any question about Connor Teahan red shirting? Seriously. Your playing time will be when HCBS wants to make a point after he gets mad at about 8 other guys or in the last 30 seconds of a 40 point blowout. C’mon Connor, at this point, you are a short Matt Kleinmann and unless you can get a whole lot quicker, especially on D, then your future is pretty clear. God love you for all the work you put in and for your love of KU, but take the 5th year and enjoy your time on the team. If your degree path takes 5 years, you might as well be in uniform.

Tony Bandle 10 years, 3 months ago

Aw...Crap!!! Just got word from a good buddy in the North Carolina Sports Information Dept. They have been led to believe that Barnes is going to commit to Duke!!!! I guess that may explain the Mario redshirt, huh?

God, I hope this is wrong...after all, this source is a Tarhole!!

KUFan90 10 years, 3 months ago

Mario redshirting has nothing to do with Barnes. Do you really think if Barnes first choice is KU he would be scared off by Mario Little? I like Mario and all, but it's a little conceited to think he is the one making the final decision for Barnes.

Also I think both Little and Releford should redshirt. I'm not worried about "depth at the 3". Self plays 3 guards all the time. I'm fine with Collins, Taylor, and Johnson out there giving X a breather. Plus we'd still have Morningstar as well 2nd semester. We are better off with both redshirting.

Agree on Teahan. I think it's great that he declined scholly offers from other schools to play for his dream school, but that was his choice. I'm glad he is on the team but sorry he's not sniffing much of the court in the next few years red shirt or not.

John Boyle 10 years, 3 months ago

If Conner Teahan can get back his 3 point stroke and can improve his defense (which he said he has) then he can contribute to this or any other top program. There's lots of guys out there playing solid minutes for top programs that aren't any faster than Teahan. Speed is nice but it isn't everything. He has size for a shooting guard and a great work ethic. I'd take that any day of the week. He should redshirt this year and continue to develop and mature and then he will be able to give KU valuable minutes the following two years. Rock Chalk Jayahawk!!

Joe Baker 10 years, 3 months ago

KUFan90- No, not all...I don't see any conceit on anyone's part. I don't think either player or Self is trying to base decisions on anything. But, you do have to plan. I'm simply speculating at what plans could impact all these decisions. I don't think Barnes, Little or Self really cares what the other will do. Obviously, Little and Barnes will do what's best for #1 and Self will do what's best for the KU b-ball program.

Lastly, I really don't think anyone cares what we say, do or think about this whole story!! LOL But it's fun to hope!

Joe Baker 10 years, 3 months ago

OakvilleJHawk (anonymous) says... Aw...Crap!!! Just got word from a good buddy in the North Carolina Sports Information Dept. They have been led to believe that Barnes is going to commit to Duke!!!! I

Why wait then? Why not just announce if this is true? If I'm committing to a school, then just make your announcement already! I guess you have to give ESPN time to create their usual media frenzy for the big announcement.

Also, if you are leaning toward a school, say dook, why take the token trips and waste more time. I don't think Barnes would waste time with other schools, especially he is "leaning." I don't think he'd play games like that. No trip would be necessary if he's following your source's claim.

He may commit to the dookies but I don't think anyone but Barnes knows where he's committing!!

shoedee 10 years, 3 months ago

I guess I'll switch some gears as well. I have a question for you guys, and I bring it up with fear and trepidation. This is why: Royce Woolridge committed to KU his sophomore year in HS. Obviously Self put an offer on the table, maybe under the assumption that Royce would get even better as a college prospect and ascend in the rankings. At least by national services, Royce has not ascended but actually dropped a bit. I'm so glad Royce has wanted to play for KU so early on. His commitment reminds me of Cole's or Elijah's in that there's only one place he has ever wanted to go and you gotta love the guy for it.

Here's the part that could get me in hot water with my fellow KU fans: however, HCBS is recruiting such elite talent now every year, is it not in the program's best interest to recruit mostly HS seniors and on rare occasion HS juniors in order to fill needs as they arise? Who knows if Xavier sticks around for another year or Tyshawn becomes 1st round material after this year? Or if Mario Little redshirts. Let's say that Xavier, Tyshawn and Mario are still around next year and Cole leaves with Sherron, ... that will only leave one scholarship for Barnes, Selby, Lamb or Knight. And if by some miracle of a chance Cole stays for his senior year and the above scenario plays out, that leaves ZERO scholarships.

At the end of this next year, we could be faced with a similar situation as we had last year where top quality good-hearted guys (but maybe not quite as talented as the rest of the roster but definitely committed KU guys) like Appleton and QT were required to transfer. I love Royce's early commitment to the program, but if you have a chance to get Barnes, Selby, Lamb or Knight instead, is his talent value as high as theirs? And might Royce end up a year or two down the road going down the same path as QT, a hard-working and talented guy rated in the 100s by most recruiting services but not quite the caliber of player KU puts on the floor, therefore needing to transfer?

Tony Bandle 10 years, 3 months ago

truehawk93

The more I thought about it, the more I agree with you. Harrison is a smart young man who will make a deliberate decision based on thorough investigation. If my buddy is pimping me, I'm going to fly to Chapel Hill and stick my boot up his Tarhole!!!

Ron Franklin 10 years, 3 months ago

anybody have any advice on where to get good, fair priced tickets for one of these first games

Joel Hood 10 years, 3 months ago

shoedee,

I think every recruit coach gets knows the drill with Self. If you produce in practice & games, you play. No one is shown favoritism. The problem is, all these guys think they will compete and play. Then the reality sets in. Uncle Roy would recruit a range of guys and everyone knew who would need to sit for a few years (TJ Pugh for example) before they would get significant minutes. Nice system, eventually everyone gets to play, and most guys hung around 4 years. But, not quite enough talent to always be in contention for a NC every year.

HCBS doesn't typically waste time on recruiting "project" players that need 2 development seasons to be productive. Sure, I feel bad for QT & Tyrone, but they were given an opportunity and realized they needed to move on. Anyone coming to Kansas now knows how it works. Royce has been given an opportunity to reach his potential at KU. It is not a guarantee. I would rather be given an opportunity to succeed at KU, fail, and then move on to another school than to never take that chance.

jaybate 10 years, 3 months ago

KUFan90,

Rereading my post, I can see how you came to your POV on this, so let me strive for more clarity and perhaps you will see what I intended.

Barnes has said he wants to sign early and, at least, wants to notify those coaches out of the running as early as possible. This creates a situation where Self has some incentive to wait and see, at least a little while.

KU appeared to still be in the hunt as of the day of the FHSU exhibition game.

Therefore, Self is probably thinking about the red shirt decision with Barnes as a possible part of next year's mix.

In turn, Self has to figure that if Barnes comes, Little won't play that much next year either.

In turn, if Barnes were signed, Self has to weigh the benefits to himself and his program of giving Little one more year of eligibility to contribute--when he won't play much vs. giving Little's ride to some frosh who can be developed for several years of contributions.

If Barnes signs elsewhere early, then, suddenly, throwing Little a red shirt is a no brainer.

So a main reason Self is waiting is probably to see if Barnes signs at KU, or elsewhere.

But I argue a secondary reason is that red shirting Little now results in not one, but three very strong, advanced, mature players being at the 3 next season (Morningstar, Little, and Releford).

It changes the 3 spot from a strong need to fill, to hardly a need at all.

It means that Barnes (or anyone else) would have serious competition at the 3, rather than having the position to himself with one back up.

Barnes would not be the first big time player to pick the best program with the least competition at his position. I doubt there is any other top program in the country with three players the quality of Morningstar, Little and Releford waiting in the wings to play the 3.

Eliott Reeder 10 years, 3 months ago

Little 'choosing' to burn his red-shirt last year is equivalent to J.R. Giddens 'choosing' to transfer. These guys maybe have the final decision in theory, but it is the coach that persuades them one way or the other. Up until recently, Coach has been wording his quotes as: "they need to decide what is best for them in the long run." But recent quotes, from players and coaches, have been a bit more honest. Coach is looking at their performance in practice and deciding what to do with them. These decisions about red-shirting are NOT in the player's hands. To think otherwise is naive.

shoedee 10 years, 3 months ago

jayhawker joel,

you're points are well-taken. But I wonder if HCBS thinks some days (doesn't say but thinks) that he had no idea that we would be in the running for 3 out of the top 4 of rival's top rated prospects this year (Barnes, Knight and Selby) and also the 21st-rated prospect (Lamb). And with that new knowledge mildly regrets giving Royce a scholarship so early on. I know hindsight is 20-20, but I wonder if this impacts HCBS's thinking on how quick he is to put an early offer on the table, in the future. I believe Tyrel was rated around 85 (a lot higher than Royce) by rivals the year he came out, and he's a great role player but if you could have gotten a top-ten guard like Selby, Barnes or Knight instead, wouldn't that have been better?

You know, I'm just throwing these things out there to process but once we get our new guys in next year, I'll be behind them 150% including Royce. I remember reading Darren Collison of UCLA was rated by rivals around 100 coming out of his senior class and look at the elite guard he became. I guess this is the sort of thing we hope for with Royce.

truefan 10 years, 3 months ago

Shoedee, I don't mind your opinion at all, but if you haven't taken the time to look up Royce then you should definately do so. Royce is one of the most leathal scorers in the 2010 class. His production hasn't dropped, but his ranking has because he committed so early. He is also projected to keep growing. According to reports from his family (so it's hearsay, not fact) his father grew during his senior year of high school and his freshman year of college. His father went from 6'1 to 6'8. When we started recruiting Royce he was 6'0, now he is 6'3. If he grows a few more inches and keeps his guard skills he could be the matchup nightmare of the century.

Not saying any of this will happen, but his potential growth matched with his already potent scoring abilities make him a big time recruit in my book, even if rivals doesn't agree.

Joel Hood 10 years, 3 months ago

Shoedee,

You could be right, but Dooley, Townsend, & Manning are pretty good judges of talent. I also think Self does expect to land top recruits every year. During the pre-game interview Tuesday, Self was asked about the AFH renovations, and he resonded with something like this -

“…in the past, it was tough to recruit kids to schools that didn’t have world class facilities. Now, we have that. It’s no guarantee we will always get the best recruits, but now we have no excuses…”

shoedee 10 years, 3 months ago

truefan,

I hadn't thought about Royce's growth potential. If he grew another 3-4 inches, you might be right, he could be a devastating scorer. Is the knock on how well he distributes as a 2 guard? Or a questionability about his quickness? I know he is carving up AZ high-school defenses, but will he do the same in D1? I can tend to get pissed at the recruiting sites too especially when they knock our guy, but I find that more often than not, they are pretty accurate.

Adam James 10 years, 3 months ago

All- Let's be honest here. If you're on the table to be a "red shirt" as a senior, you're not going to make a significant impact at KU. If a player is good enough, they would no question be a starter as a senior in any program. No disrespect to Mario, but he just needs to play this year and get as many minutes as he deserves for Coach Self. If it's not very many, that's just too bad. At the end of the day, we'll be in the same situation next year with all the talent we have if he decides to red shirt.

tstanlick1909 10 years, 3 months ago

Question: Can Little/Releford keep sitting out games until Barnes makes his decision so they can accurately make theirs? I guess it's probably the same the other way for Barnes if he is actually considering us.

The point is, Barnes recently confirmed that he will make his decision on Monday

NotWiller 10 years, 3 months ago

Little totally took one for the team last year. Anyone else remember Self being quoted as saying, "We didn't recruit him to redshirt."?? The decision was made knowing that the team would be slightly better off and Mario would be much worse off. Coach made that decision b/c he has to look out for the whole more than any part. I'm sure it was hard on a personal level, but that's what it came down to: Mario was a sacrifice that had to be made.

Mario's a hell of a player and a Jayhawk through and through. Healthy, this kid starts at the 3 for most any team in the country. We're stacked this year, so Mario, do what's best for you b/c if everyone put into the team what you did last year, we'd never lose.

You're the man, Mario. Stay another year, be 100% healthy, and show the b-ball world what you can do. You know where you'll be a year from now if you play limited minutes, and it's not where you want to go. Redshirting is NO kind of guarantee, and it's going to be very hard to sit on the sidelines this year, but consider the costs and rewards of this one-year investment.

Whatever you decide, you'll ALWAYS go down as a 100% committed Jayhawk.

Rock Chalk, Mario. You've done what's good for the 'Hawks, now do what's best for you.

Joe Baker 10 years, 3 months ago

shoedee says- And might Royce end up a year or two down the road going down the same path as QT, a hard-working and talented guy rated in the 100s by most recruiting services but not quite the caliber of player KU puts on the floor, therefore needing to transfer?

No hot water here! Good points. But Royce (6'3") dropped recruiting rank only b/c of his early commitment to KU. He's EJsque, not a Prophet but a Rolls Royce!! LOL But seriously, he's bigger, better and faster than Appleton so your comparing an Apple-ton to a Rolls Royce. He will be a good player. The only thing you do have to consider is that we'll be stacked with guards. Royce is as good as Knight, Selby or Lamb and can take a game over. He's a smart kid much like EJ and understands the "team" concept.

This kid has NBA pedigree written all over him. Remember, his dad is Orlando Woolridge and his brother is 6-8 and plays for Georgetown. His D is nasty and he will dominate by his Junior and Senior years.

If you think about it, HCBS is trying to get these guys and if they are smart and patient, they may win a NC and go to the NBA. They may not play much their Freshmen yr. Again, ask SC and Cole! They didn't play their Freshmen yr but they are crazy talented and experienced in their Jr and Sr yrs, have a NC and will go to the NBA.

The Jayhawks have a great future over the next 3-4 years!!

Joe Baker 10 years, 3 months ago

I'll hold you to that Oakville!! LOL

Caption: "Jayhawk Nation rips a New Tarhole"!!!

shoedee 10 years, 3 months ago

Thanks guys for your feedback on Royce. I guess the main thing I get from all this is you have to trust Self, Dooley and Manning above the recruiting services. This helps me put to rest the concern that we might not be able to get Barnes, Selby and Knight even if all three wanted to suit up for the Hawks next year. I gotta roll, but I will continue to check in as the season unfolds. Rock Chalk Jayhawk!!! This is our year guys! 2010 National Champs!

Joe Baker 10 years, 3 months ago

Speaking of Selby, Lamb and Knight- I think our chances are in that order!!

Selby seems really sold on KU. Lamb is leaning KU and Knight seems to love the BEast. I think he likes Syracuse and UConn!! My prediction is he'll go Orange unless they have another debacle, he may go UConn. I personally would want to go where my chances of a NC were secured for the next 1-2 years, say KU!!

I'd love to have one or all of them, but can't win them all, right?

If X goes OAD, Collins gone and Cole goes- There's three! I doubt we get but 1-2 of these three and that leaves 1 for Mr Barnes!!! Keep hoping...

addlime 10 years, 3 months ago

All this speculation is nuts! Barnes would start, redshirts won't affect his decision! No freshman is gonna play 40, and we haven't seen Mario healthy yet, so its just about getting into the rotation for him. A bird in hand is worth two in the bush, and the X bird is in hand, (with Brady and Marcus competing there for minutes this year). Probably better off next year trying to spell a frosh that we may or may not get. Of course, X, might actually want/ need to stay another year. Frankly, I'd rather ride the pine, help the team in practice, play a huge role in a couple games where injuries or fouls provide opportunity, and have a chance to be a part of something special, like a Final Four.

BTW, 40-0 is the most ridiculous thing I've ever heard.

Tony Bandle 10 years, 3 months ago

40-0...........:[

Temple in Philly UCLA in LA Tennessee in Knoxville Texas in Austin Okie St in Gallagher Missouri in Mizzou

Can we win any of these games...of course. Can we win all of these games...gimme a break.

This doesn't even count trap games like Michigan, @ ISU, @KST, Memphis in St.Lou. C'mon everybody, get off the 40 and 0 crap for good.... it ain't gonna happen.

The fact that it's been 33 years since a team went undefeated is no coincidence!!!

Joe Baker 10 years, 3 months ago

addlime (anonymous) says... Frankly, I'd rather ride the pine, help the team in practice, play a huge role in a couple games where injuries or fouls provide opportunity, and have a chance to be a part of something special, like a Final Four.

I think we're all saying the same thing and yes it's speculation.

But it's fun!! Dang...it's fun to be a Jayhawk.

Joe Baker 10 years, 3 months ago

Okie St in Gallagher-

This game is sold out!!

I'm trying to score tickets.

Joel Hood 10 years, 3 months ago

Just my opinion, but the idea of 40-0 is a bit silly, especially with us relying on so many young &/or limited experience guys. It’s fun to dream about it, but when that becomes the expectation by a large number of fans, it makes us (fans) look ridiculous when they have their first loss.

Remember how the sky was falling after we lost to KSUck in 2008. The loss at Texas was more acceptable, but that loss at OSU had James Naismith rolling in his grave and some people were questioning Bill Self’s effort to win that game.

I believe this team will have some losses, but by March those losses will hopefully steal our resolve to win. I will actually be worried going into the NCAAs if we have no losses. The pressure will simply be horrible for such a young team. To grind through 6 games at the end, you need some hard times to refocus what you are doing. No one wants to lose, but losing to ORU in AFH in November 2006 made our guys tougher in April 2008 (ok - blast away...)

jaybate 10 years, 3 months ago

KoolKeithFreeze,

Agreed. Coaches appear to make the effective decision. Then players appear to have the final say. But if the player wants the coach in his corner, he does exactly what the coach "recommends." If he wants to sit, or be in a dog house for the rest of his stay at a school, and eventually be booted from a team for some yet to be determined reason, he contradicts the coach's wishes on red shirting. As coaches sometimes say, "A team is not a democracy." So: no sense pretending otherwise.

Joe Baker 10 years, 3 months ago

I frankly don't care what our recrod is as long as we are hanging the banner in the Phog!

My curiosity is IF we lose any games, who? Who do you see that will hand us a loss or two? Texas? OSU? mizzou? who? If we lose, how many do you think we need to lose before you feel "right"? You say too much pressure and yet these guys want to play in the pressure packed NBA? It's time to grow up and become men. You have to handle the pressure now or you'll choke later or in the NBA. Let the team decide whether they win or lose!

We can't lose in March, we'd be done! So, take your pick what game we need to lose: Texas in regular conf play? how about B12 tourney play? Or do you want to win both reg conf and conf tourney? Memphis has already offered to hand us our first loss. Who else? I'm sure there will be takers. We certainly found out last year. MSU is dying to beat us a fourth time in a row.

I'm sure a loss will come during the regular season. But you're already conceding loses and we haven't even played a preseason game yet. I understand what you're saying and agree to a degree, but let's not go to far the other direction either. I hope you get my point. You win all or nothing!

Joe Baker 10 years, 3 months ago

The #8 ranked player in the ESPNU 100, Josh Selby, will be a guest on ESPNU’s ‘Recruiting Insider’ today at 3:00 c.s.t.

ESPNU will then have their college basketball preview show on at 4:30 c.s.t.

rockchalkxii 10 years, 3 months ago

I honestly dont care about going 40-0. I want to go 6-0. If we can win a ring, We could lose 8 games again and I wouldnt care. RCJHKU.

Joel Hood 10 years, 3 months ago

truehawk,

I never conceded a loss and asking me to pick a game that I want to lose is just silly. My point was that teams who face no adversity before March are more likely to panic when faced with adversity later in the season. It means nothing more than that. Fans who expect a 40-0 season and then turn into Chicken Little after one loss are embarrassing. Those were my points.

You are pushing my point out of context. I could do the same with your comments. For example, what does “You win all or nothing!” mean? Are you saying that one loss means a failed season? Are you saying that anything short of a NC is a disaster? Well, I hope not. So please, take my points for what they were intended and I won’t bust your chops for saying we haven’t even played a preseason game yet. :-)

jaybate 10 years, 3 months ago

I honestly care about going 40-0, or however many wins it takes to go undefeated and win a ring.

They keep score for a reason: the object of each game is to win it.

The goal of sport is to be the very best one can be.

If one has good talent, the goal is to win the conference.

If one has among the best talent, the goal is to win a national championship.

If one has among the most talent of all time, the goal is to win a national championship, go undefeated and join the most elite rank of champions in the history of the game.

This team has could be a special team. Self said so in the LJW. It was one of the reasons he hoped Collins and Aldrich would come back...so that it could be a special team.

Now that the talent is assembled, and the season is barely underway, the team has a possibility to join the ranks of the greatest teams of all time.

What kind of Kansas fan would say they don't care if this team goes undefeated? What kind of Kansas fan suggests this team should not shoot for the goal of going undefeated and being national champion?

What kind of coach would, when the stars aligned and his team's talent and the opposing competition made it seem at least a possibility, choose not do his darnedest to coach his team toward the highest goal possible?

Not Bill Self's kind of coach!

No matter what Coach Self says in public, in private he appears to be a fiercely competitive man, a man who knows and values the traditions of the game, a man who cares about leaving a mark on the game and the people he coaches, and a man who is already on record as saying this could be a special team. In private, Bill Self has to know that this team has a slim, but significant shot at an undefeated, national championship season. In private, he has to be thinking about how to coach this team and string its bow, so that it has the best possible chance of reaching that ultimate potential.

Is a ring more important than going undefeated and losing a ring? Of course. That's not the point.

The question is: is winning a ring and a championship a higher goal than just winning a ring?

The answer is: of course, it is.

Only Coach Self knows the game and his talent well enough to know, if this could potentially be a team for the ages.

I don't.

I can only say it looks like it could be.

The loss of Morningstar for a semester, and loss so far of CJ Henry to injury could well be the early season factors that lead to an upset, or a loss that might not otherwise have occurred. But this team is still so stacked that there is still reason to consider an undefeated national championship season as being feasible.

And Self says it could be a special team.

And Self didn't even say that before the '08 national championship season.

So: what is more special than a national championship?

You tell me.

Lance Hobson 10 years, 3 months ago

I think Little can help us a lot this year. I'd keep him and RS Rel and Teahan.

FairgroveJayhawk 10 years, 3 months ago

From a 2009/2010 KU player's point of view, the goal has to be undefeated. It is the ultimate goal and the only logical goal for this team as they have the capacity to do it. I would say most years it would be to win the conference, conf. tournament and a national championship.

But with this team they have to aim for the sun. If they loose a game (likely so), they will set a new goal of only loosing one. That should be the goal and it should be fiercely sought to help to mold their strength.

I can't wait until these damn exhibition games are over so I can see this beastly, deisel guzzling, full throttle team develop.

I need to check espn fc

Joe Baker 10 years, 3 months ago

jayhawkerjoel- I'm not out to "bust" any chops. The only game played was considered an exhibition game. I don't think it was counted.
My point is exactly what you are saying. Who cares what the record is at the end. I placed my entire comments in context when I said, "I don't care what our record is, as long as we hang the banner in the Phog."

I wasn't even targeting you or your comments. If your hoping for a loss, who would you like it to be? As I said, there are many takers that would like to knock us off the top.

So, jayhawkerjoel, right or wrong, context or no context, undefeated or not, let's just watch them play...hope they win and ignore the record. We all want the same thing in April!

This is all I'm saying. I didn't realize we were commenting to bust chops.LOL

Joe Baker 10 years, 3 months ago

FairgroveJayhawk- You're busting chops!! I like your thinking. Just teasing :-)

Doesn't hurt to strive for the impossible, because anything else is failure and you cheat yourself and your team from reaching your full potential.

Let's Git R Done!!

RCJHKU

Joe Baker 10 years, 3 months ago

Did anyone hear the Selby interview?

I missed it!

Joe Baker 10 years, 3 months ago

http://rivals.yahoo.com/ncaa/basketball/blog/the_dagger/post/Meet-the-best-13-year-old-basketball-player-you-?urn=ncaab,196850

Jayhawk Nation meet Master Wiggins...OH MY GOSH!!

He's got to have coaches frothing....DANG 13 YRS OLD AND 6'6"....

All I can say is WOW! Did I say he was 13 yrs old...Dang

jaybate 10 years, 3 months ago

The proper mentality for players is play one game at a time.

The proper mentality for coaches is to find ways to tune the fiddle and rossin the bow in order to achieve what the coaches genuinely believe a team is capable of achieving. With this team, there is significant, but recently lessoned reason to think it might have greatness in its grasp, not just a championship.

The only precedents worth noting are:

Knight's '76 Indiana team with quite similar talent to this team and much less depth did it most recently. Benson and Aldrich equivalent. Buckner and Collins equivalent. Scott May and Xavier/Marcus. May probably better, but only because he was a senior. KU will definitely have the better and deeper bench. KU's will have more quality bigs. Indiana did it playing a derivative of Iba principles, as will KU.

Wooden's 3 undefeated teams had greater impact players in the post, about equal depth, and also played an even more distant derivative of Iba principles.

The analogy with Knight's '76 team seems strongest. This KU team is not as mature as Indiana was, but its deeper.

Frankly, I believe this team could, by late in the season, kick the snot out of that Indiana team. This KU team could equal that IU team physically at every position. It could even go big at the two against the 6'7" Bobby Wilkerson.

This team is the first KU team in my life time that I have ever thought could rise to one of the all time teams.

I'm sure not giving up this notion before I see an L show up!

FairgroveJayhawk 10 years, 3 months ago

truehawk - I was getting a bit excited. Now that I'm down to earth, hopefully they give it 100% every game so they can look back and say they did the best they could on that day.... as they aim for the sun, rev that deisel.. oh yeah, did it again. It's hard not to get excited about these guys.

Rock Chalk

Tony Bandle 10 years, 3 months ago

What's the difference between a violin and a fiddle???

To succeed, the goal is always to shoot beyond the mark. When I was running 400 meter races several centuries ago, the coaches taught us to focus on a spot 10 yards beyond the finish line, thus running at maximum thru the goal. [Unlike Mr. Bolt}

What I was trying to say so inadequately in my earlier post was that, this KU team may be the best equipped team in the last 33 years to achieve the unachievable aka 40-0, however, not to achieve it would denigrate a NC not one iota!!!

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