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Monday, October 19, 2009

Woolridge thrilled with visit to Allen Fieldhouse

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Royce Woolridge, who orally committed to Kansas University as a sophomore in high school, has never second-guessed his decision to become a Jayhawk.

After seeing Allen Fieldhouse full for the first time ... it’s safe to say the 6-foot-3 Phoenix Sunnyslope High combo guard is even more enthused about what’s in store for him starting next school year at KU.

“It was great. I had an awesome time,” Woolridge said of his official visit to KU, which included a front row seat at the 25th-annual Late Night in the Phog.

He was in town on the same weekend as uncommitted Class of 2010 prospects Harrison Barnes, Doron Lamb and Josh Selby, plus Class of 2011 player Josiah Turner.

“Late Night was awesome,” said Woolridge, whose weekend host was junior Tyrel Reed. “The fans are crazy. It was so loud in there it’s ridiculous. I’ve never seen anything like that before.”

He enjoyed not only watching the Late Night scrimmage, but participating in a pick-up game with members of KU’s team on Friday.

“All of them were good. Thomas is a beast,” Woolridge said of freshman power forward Thomas Robinson. “Tyshawn (Taylor), Sherron (Collins), Xavier (Henry) ... really all of them,” he added.

Woolridge — he received recruiting interest from Arizona, Arizona State, California, UCLA, Georgetown and others — was elated to take a tour of KU’s new facilities, including a brand new locker room, players’ lounge and practice facility.

“They were sick. The practice gym was amazing and the locker rooms are crazy too. The facilities are great. I can’t wait to get up there. I’m happy to be a Jayhawk,” Woolridge said.

KU’s fans are happy to have him aboard.

“Fans came up to me and said they are excited to see me play,” said Woolridge, who is ranked No. 117 nationally by Rivals.com. “It’s going to be fun to play at a school with such great fans. They showed at Late Night what it’s going to be like.”

A day later, he attended KU’s first official practice of the season.

Did the intensity scare him?

“Not really, I just have to brace myself, get ready for it,” he said.

Lamb, a 6-4 senior shooting guard from Oak Hill Academy in Mouth of Wilson, Va., also was awed by the full house.

“The highlight (of visit) was when I walked out with the others (recruits) and the crowd was cheering and gave us a standing ovation. I’ve never had anything like that happen to me,” Lamb said.

“It was a cool visit. I liked meeting the players, coaches and seeing the campus. Coach Self is cool. He’s real. He tells you the truth.”

Lamb — his weekend host was Tyshawn Taylor — enjoyed the 20-minute Late Night scrimmage. “It was really good. They scored a lot of points and didn’t turn it over much,” Lamb said.

Lamb, Rivals.com’s No. 21-rated player will visit Kentucky next weekend. Oklahoma and Arizona are also on his list.

Selby, a 6-2 senior combo guard from Lake Clifton High in Baltimore, who is rated No. 4 nationally, is also considering Baylor, Indiana, Kentucky, Miami and Syracuse.

“Josh was able to spend time with coach Bill Self during his visit and his host was Sherron Collins. What stood out most was the fan support and atmosphere. Josh really enjoyed the visit,” Selby’s mom, Maeshon Witherspoon told Rivals.com, noting they planned to make some additional campus visits.

Barnes, 6-8 senior from Ames (Iowa) High, is also considering North Carolina, Duke, UCLA, Oklahoma and Iowa State. The country’s No. 2-rated player told Rivals.com on Sunday he needed time to reflect on his visit before commenting on the trip.

Turner, a 6-3 junior from Sacramento (Calif.) High, also had “a great time” at KU.

“The applause the crowd gave us was wild,” said Turner, who is also considering Arizona, Arizona State, Cal, Oregon, SMU, UCLA and Florida International. “It was just a crazy experience.”

Comments

ParisHawk 10 years, 3 months ago

"Barnes ... told Rivals.com on Sunday he needed time to reflect on his visit before commenting on the trip."

From this and a few stories elsewhere, this guy comes off as a bit of a control freak or at least not very spontaneous. How hard is it to say "great visit, great crowd, yadda yadda"?

Guy wants to appear professional, should check out CJ who knows what to say without having a poker up his shorts.

yates33333 10 years, 3 months ago

Barnes is just a kid. Don't be too harsh. He wants to do what is best for his long range interests, which is good. Otherwise, he would be going to Iowa State. I suspect he will wind up on one of the coasts either in North Carolina or California.

Firebirdguy31 10 years, 3 months ago

Yea, Barnes non-comment bothers me too. I see him at either Duke, North Carolina, or KU. I really don't see him at UCLA. Of course, from his reaction at Late Night, I would scrub KU off his list.

James Miller 10 years, 3 months ago

It could be he loved the visit. He may just want to keep his feelings to himself until he visits other places. After all, when you state how much you love one place then pick another, you look wishy-washy.
He probably loved KU, but is scared he won't have a starting job here. So, in his heart he may be torn.

Robert Brock 10 years, 3 months ago

Please. There is no place that Barnes will be going where he won't be starting. From Day One.

Martin Rosenblum 10 years, 3 months ago

Interesting timing of this story.

After two and a half days of comments discussing the photo where it looked like these guys were watching Quadafi's speech at the U.N.instead of being in the middle of Late Night, now we are seeing comments from them. Obviously, the interviews would have to have been done on Friday night/Sat. Maybe journalism has taken a new direction. It may now be in vogue to spread out a story over a week or so just to keep the reader involved rather than just reporting the facts as soon after the event as possible. Just like throwing a photo up without identifying who is in it, the reader should wait for follow up articles to see if those people in the photo would be identified and/or had any comments regarding the subject of the original story.

Sorry for the judgement call. I guess I'm used to reporters like they have at the JNS and their stringers who put it all out there at one time.

DannyBartlett 10 years, 3 months ago

Can someone tell me what is going on with Barnes? For the past four years Barnes was real high on KU and the fans were told that Barnes was more or less going to be a Jayhawk when the signing period came. Now I see on Rivals that he is high on North Carolina and Duke and not KU. But, Rival also said that Barnes and his mother really like KU and Coach Self. We are behind them. I seen on Scout.com that he is high on Duke, North Carolina and Kansas. Then on Zagsblog.net reported that he is also High on all three, Even though he was a Duke lean all along. Can someone tell me what has happened with Barnes and KU? Did Self and Banres and his family have a falling out? Why is Duke and North Caroling ahead of KU according to Rival? Why is he high on them now and not KU now? The other two schools didn't come into his recruitment untill the last year or so. North Carolina came in real late. Can someone tell me what is really going on with this kid. I really love his game and he seems like a great kid. I would really hate to loose him. I just don't know what site is reporting the truth. Thanks a lot. Danial Bartlett

mjlindsm 10 years, 3 months ago

Barnes doesn't talk to the media as much as other recruits. He tries to keep it all in his family. He's a very bright kid and he's being extremely smart about this.

The problem is that it makes all these recruiting services guess based on what little comments they hear from him. The fact is that probably only two people know what Harrison is thinking: him and his Mom.

I love the way this kid is handling everything, but I can see it drives the rest of you crazy.

Phoggin_Loud 10 years, 3 months ago

Danny, Save yourself the mental anguish. These 18 year-old kids make decisions for the strangest reasons. He'll decide when he decides.

Joel Hood 10 years, 3 months ago

Some kids like Royce know right away where they want to play. Other kids truly have a difficult decision to make. They may love the trip to Late Night, but they are realists. Most of these kids have a number of family and friends giving them “advice” about the consequences of their decision. I don’t believe that HB has had any falling out with KU or HCBS, but he and the rest of the uncommitted have a life altering choice to make and no one wants to make a mistake. There are at least five critical factors that play a role into a recruit's choice and God only knows which one has the greatest influence:

  1. System – Does this coach’s system fit my style of play?
  2. Environment – Are the players, coaches, students, fans and alums people that are a good fit for me?
  3. Playing Time – Will there be another player there, similar to me, which will take away from my playing time?
  4. Proximity – Is this school close enough to my family so they can visit regularly?
  5. Academics – Does this school have a program that matches my educational goals?

HB has a lot to consider. Although some people will laugh at the academic category, HB and his mom have made it clear that academics are very important. If he chooses Duke, NC, or even Iowa State, I’m sure he has made a well-considered, personal decision. There is no way that HCBS or anyone else could have done anything else.

I hope that other posters on this board don’t go into wild speculation about why these kids haven’t all committed within a day or two of Late Night. Rivals, etc., use lots of “inside sources” to predict where these kids plan to go. These sources are often little more that sycophants trying to feel important and these recruiting sources have a vested interest in creating controversy. I sincerely hope that all KU fans who post here and on other sites keep their speculations in check. It does KU absolutely no good to have a bunch of Chicken Littles posting negative messages about kids who are taking a long time to make their decision.

IMHO, there is no way that four uncommitted kids chose to come to Late Night at KU just to sign somewhere else. I bet we get at least two of the four – that’s just my opinion.

Jaminrawk 10 years, 3 months ago

The more I watch Josh Selby play, the more I fall in love with his game. He is a tough kid with unlimited upside. I know UK is gonna make a hard run at him, but I just think that kid would be a perfect fit as a Kansas Jayhawk. We like taking hardnosed kids from tough towns (Sherron and Chicago, Russ Rob from New York, Adonis Jordan from Brooklyn, etc.). I think Selby could be next and could end up being the best frosh point we ever had.

DannyBartlett 10 years, 3 months ago

If I am not mistaken Adonis Jordan came from the San Fernando Valley, in the Los Angeles area. The City of Silmar or something like that. But, you are very correct on KU getting a lot of hard nosed kids.

KEITHMILES05 10 years, 3 months ago

Adonis was born in Brooklyn and grew up in Reseda, Cali.

HB most certainly commented on his Duke and UNC visit. Hmmmmm.

Priest Fontaine 10 years, 3 months ago

I don't care too much about player rankings. I know they aren't completely accurate, but I can't say that i'm exactly celebrating we have a commitment from 117th ranked Woolridge. I know he is a good scorer and KU could probably do wonders to develop his game but it seems like we should be getting our pick of the top 25 and not having to settle for anything less. At the same time, I trust HCBS. He has obviously seen the kid play and I haven't. I did read that he put up over 30 while being guarded by Barnes though (or something like that). I really hope this kid proves me and his ranking wrong. Sounds like he has the right attitude to be a Jayhawk.

Phoggin_Loud 10 years, 3 months ago

Part of Woolridge's ranking comes from the fact that he committed so early. Recruiting sources give up on them & don't see the development. I'm not worried at all. I'll trust HCBS over the recruiting services.

5a5quatch 10 years, 3 months ago

Barnes' "no comment" is probably due in part to the fact that he writes a recruiting blog/diary. That's when he'll describe his visit.

It may be nothing more than wanting to describe everything in full detail in his blog.

100 10 years, 3 months ago

Of course Harrison liked the visit -- keep in mind, this is a very smart kid. He knows he doesn't have to say anything to the media. He wants to make this choice on his own.

We know KU is the best place for him. He knows now that basketballwise it is the best, even with upcoming visits on tap. The business school's MBA program is only second on his list of schools to Duke's 4 year post grad program which would mean he'd miss 4 years of NBA money & lose early & often in the NCAA tourney at Duke for 4 years straight.

The kid is smart -- he'll do the math. KU is absolutely the best choice for him & his privacy should be respected.

We are his #1 right now -- let's keep it that way.

addlime 10 years, 3 months ago

100, you're absolutely correct. Barnes is a really smart guy, and KU would be a wonderful fit for him. Only he knows if its the best fit.. The Business school is about as good as he can take advantage of without compromising an NBA future. And that will be very important to him if he is one of these guys that sees the NBA (NBA dollars, more specifically) as a stepping stone to bigger and better things. He won't need an MBA from Duke if he has NBA capital, connections, and a good head on his shoulders. KU's proximity is second only to Ames, but his exposure there would be 50 times greater. Not to mention the level of competition in practice everyday. I love that some people actually seem bothered by his "no comment". Who cares? In the end, he'll sign where he signs.

jaybate 10 years, 3 months ago

WARNING: Stylistic Discussion of One Tiny Phrase in Gary Bedore's Story

"...it’s safe to say the 6-foot-3 Phoenix Sunnyslope High combo guard..." --Gary Bedore

I fear, Gary, that you have, in the excitement of the start of the season, treaded to the very threshold of nounal/adjectival stacking. :-)

What is the LJW's criterion for how many nouns and adjectives may be stacked against a humble noun like "guard?"

How many nouns may be stacked?

How many adjectives may be stacked?

And how many nouns and adjectives may be stacked together?

Are the LJW criteria on this matter written, or unwritten stylistic institutions?

Will we see a longer stack than the one quoted above in the future?

I raise this issue partly, because it appears to forced you into near gratuitous use of contractions "it's" and "what's."

Remember: you are my light in the stylistic darkness that has descended on sports journalism. You are my Eumenide guarding the city of elegant sentences. You are the last living link with Ira Miller. Like a monk in an Irish monastery of western Ireland at the start of the Middle Ages, alone, you must guard the knowledge that accrued during the classical age of journalism--the one before the current fall. You must do this so that that knowledge may one day be restored to common usage in media.

jaybate 10 years, 3 months ago

Maeshon Witherspoon clearly has the right stuff. This is why we need a fifth tower added to Jayhawker Towers just for moms!

I also suspect anyone named Maeshon is a monster cook!

In fact, I am beginning to think the JayMoms (yep, I coined another word) ought just to take over the training table from now on!!!

Recruits getting real home cooking at the training table? What could be a faster way to get to yes?!!!!!

Rock Chalk, JayMoms, Eat Hearty, KU!!!!

Dan Cook 10 years, 3 months ago

There is no reason to think we're in any different position with Barnes today than we were before he arrived Friday. That's not a bad thing. We're 1 of 3 schools with a chance, possibly only 1 of 2 schools. I see him as a strong lean to Duke, has been all along. I think it might be tough to tell K no and then go to rival UNC. Based on that I think it's us or Duke with Duke the betting favorite. I do know he thought the facilities were outstanding and didn't give us any indication that his mind was made up.

Jaminrawk 10 years, 3 months ago

Hey, it's probably just way too positive thinking, but perhaps Barnes liked the visit so much he needed time to compose himself in order to ensure he stayed on track with his original plan of making all of his visits. It's at least possible.

Joe Baker 10 years, 3 months ago

I can’t wait to get up there. I’m happy to be a Jayhawk,” Woolridge said.

I love his attitude.

Thank you Royce for being decisive.

Joe Baker 10 years, 3 months ago

“The highlight (of visit) was when I walked out with the others (recruits) and the crowd was cheering and gave us a standing ovation. I’ve never had anything like that happen to me,” Lamb said.

kensucky who? Coach Cala who?

This is real basketball Doron with real fans, great coaches and a real field house!!!

Jaminrawk 10 years, 3 months ago

Come on Josh, you know you want to be the next great KU point guard. Bill Self will make you into one of the most complete points in the country. Robinson, Chalmers, Collins ... Selby? Has a nice RING to it.

MemphisMachine 10 years, 3 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

jaybate 10 years, 3 months ago

MempussGadget,

Derrick Rose was ineligible, so Sherron couldn't have fouled him. You can't foul a guy who wasn't in the game. Rose being out on the floor was just like you being here--just another person lacking insight and showing up where he didn't belong.

To be totally accurate, what Sherron did was discipline an ineligible player for not taking his SAT himself and being on the floor, where he didn't belong. Deal with that!

Also, deal with the fact that Mempuss doesn't matter anymore.

Finally, deal with the fact that Josh is going to be a Jayhawk and the only Josh you will have on your roster is your Coach, Josh Pastner, or as I like to call him Coach Pasty.

jaybate 10 years, 3 months ago

rcjh22,

That was about the weakest post I have ever read. I asked some Internet Posting Judges to score it. This is what they gave you. The scale is 1 to 10 with 10 being highest and best.

Originality: 1/64th of a point Wit: 0 Insight: -6 Writing style: 2 Pithiness: -1 Elegiac resonance: 0 Stupidity: 10+

Its not me making the call here, rcjh22, its independent judges ranking you against the writing of millions of other sports board rats.

May I recommend the new "jaybate posting academy" in Vero Beach, Florida. Tuition is $2,500 per session with a recommended 6 sessions for some one with your score on the review provided by the independent Internet Posting Judges of America Poster Grading Service.

:-)

MemphisMachine 10 years, 3 months ago

Jaybate needs to lay off the marijuana. Can't wait to meet the Jayhawks in St. Louis.

Ryan Mullen 10 years, 3 months ago

MemphisMachine, You are a tool and anything that comes out of Memphis is a tool too, this includes Memhawk. Jaybate how many personalities do you have in that brain of yours. Now you have scoring judges, bro I'm saying this because I love you please seek professional help, soon before we see you on the news.

Ryan Mullen 10 years, 3 months ago

Concerning Wooldridge, he is going to be the best power forward we have ever had.

KUTPO 10 years, 3 months ago

Jaybate,

Your distractors are obviously jealous of your journalistic dribble and wit.

Sometimes I can't and don't want to finish all of your rants, but I do know you are smarter than the average poster....especially the young ones. Pizz on them.

Keep writing, keep the humor and your love of the jayhawks! Rock Chalk!

Martin Rosenblum 10 years, 3 months ago

jayhawkinmullen -

What did I ever do to you to deserve such a comment?

All I remember is "outing" you for being from Hooker County in Nebraska where there is only one family tree for the whole county and it's a spruce that rises 100 ft. with no branches.

It's funny how you and MemphisMachine seem to pop up around the same time with your individual wisdom. It's almost like the two of you were seperated at birth and, like twins, share a symbiotic mentality.

Ryan Mullen 10 years, 3 months ago

Memhawk,

I actually used to enjoy your comments until you accused me of being some type of psyco when I posted about the child being called Hitler, I was just being sarcastic and you went off.

Martin Rosenblum 10 years, 3 months ago

MemphisMachine -

So, you can't wait to meet the Jayhawks in St. Louis?

Well, this time, like the last time, the results of the game will be retained in the record books for the Tigers. That's because all of the wins were forfeited from the 07-08 season, leaving the losses that must still be in the record books just like this year's loss to KU will be.

Martin Rosenblum 10 years, 3 months ago

Jayawkinmullen -

Let's agree. If you won't make any more Hitler references, I won't accuse you of being a psycho, ok?

After all, if we're both Jayhawks, we need to stand united. Diversity is a cool thing.

Ryan Mullen 10 years, 3 months ago

memhawk, Brothers at first are finally brothers at last.

Martin Rosenblum 10 years, 3 months ago

Anyway,

I want to be the first to suggest a headline for Wooldridge when he first proves his skills as a Jayhawk. Ready, wait for it........

"Royce Rolls!"

Pulitzer-worthy, huh?

Ryan Mullen 10 years, 3 months ago

I am not doubting Self and his coaching ability but, I do not remember the last time Rivals has been then off on a recruit. If there is one please let me know. I think Wooldridge will perform alittle bit better than a walk on. I truly hope he be the next player though I just really don't think so.

jaybate 10 years, 3 months ago

kugrampy,

Take a deep breath, look in the mirror and slap on the glue for the pasties on those old man boobies of yours and don't read my stuff. The last thing I want to do is cause a KU grampy annoyances near the closing curtain. I'm already in my final act and I'm having a ball. The easy way to avoid reading my stuff is: press the Page Down button on your key board. It is one of the most powerful inventions in human history. Like the printing press, the Page Down button will not reach its full impact on civilization for perhaps 2-3 centuries. The internet is merely the conduit, the virtual PVC pipe bringing the content to your corneas. It is the Page Down button that holds all the power to reorder civilization. Large groups of persons choosing not to know certain things--by all manner of means--have always driven the greatest catastrophies and tragedies through out human history. The Page Down button enhances the power of the no-nothings by several orders of magnitude. Live the Page Down button, kugrampy!

jaybate 10 years, 3 months ago

KUTPO,

Flattery will get you everywhere! :-)

jaybate 10 years, 3 months ago

Ballad of a Mempuss Gadget

"There's somethin' goin' on here And you don't know what it is, Do you, Mempussgadget?"

--Mesabi Bob Dylan

jaybate 10 years, 3 months ago

Jaminrawk,

I like your optimism!

Harrison, compose yourself and say "yes" to Bill Self.

I like everything about Harrison Barnes.

Paul Pierce. Brandon Rush. Xavier Henry. Harrison Barnes.

It even scans well.

KU is king of the 3 position.

We'd have had MJ, too, if he hadn't been such a late bloomer.

Who wants a coach in a Sears blazer?

Come to KU.

mjlindsm 10 years, 3 months ago

For Harrison's reaction to his KU visit in detail, check here in a few days: http://www.highschoolhoop.com/category/recruiting-news/

He's been writing about each of his official visits. I'm sure he's waiting for this to make his comments, as he has done with the other visits. That way there's one single source of what he's saying and there aren't different rumors flying every which way.

Ryan Mullen 10 years, 3 months ago

This is what Harrison's mother had to say about there visit "KU visits are always impressive, but the Allen Fieldhouse renovations = Rock Chalk IMPRESSIVE!" Shirley Barnes, Harrison mother, about KU " this is coutesy of theshiver.com

Kent Wells 10 years, 3 months ago

Dynomite:

Where do you keep recruits WOOLridge and LAMB?

In BARNes!

Rock chalk!

Martin Rosenblum 10 years, 3 months ago

C'mon Wells, next you'll be quoting Mother Goose!

What's with all the barnyard humor?

Remember, the swine flu could have an off-shoot, just say no to those sheep and lambs!

Joe Baker 10 years, 3 months ago

jayhawkinmullen (anonymous) says... Concerning Wooldridge, he is going to be the best power forward we have ever had

jayhawkinmullin- I think Woolridge will be a 1 or 2. I'm not sure he's big enough to be a PF!! If he was as big as his dad, he would definitely be a PF!!

He'll probably play pt or wing!!

Joe Baker 10 years, 3 months ago

jayhawkinmullen (anonymous) says...

I think Wooldridge will perform alittle bit better than a walk on. I truly hope he be the next player though I just really don't think so.

jayhawkinmullen- You are truly out of your mind?? The kid is a phenom. Rivals are the very ones that has him ranked low b/c he committed to KU as a soph in high school. They couldn't play with his name like the others. They are wrong and so are you! You can't believe everything Rivals says.

MemphisMachine 10 years, 3 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

Ryan Mullen 10 years, 3 months ago

rcjh22, Are you suggesting he is ranked to high? That video was not too impressive.

Joe Baker 10 years, 3 months ago

OMG you can't watch this video ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9H4g8Y) and not see his shooting, defense and speed! You may say that these are little boys, not the B12, but it doesn't dismiss what he's capable of doing from the perimeter, his intense D or his ability to take it to the rack.

You are blind if you can't see his ability. Just ask EJ about Royce! Royce spotted up on EJ several times in this clip. At least EJ played him and can give you a better assessment of his skill. Besides, the kid is the son of an NBA legend!!

"The video was not too impressive"? Now you sound like the biased writers!!

BTW- He's ranked way too low by the idiots in the recruiting world.

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