Thursday, April 28, 2011

KU basketball recruits slip in latest rankings


Future Duke basketball player Austin Rivers, a 6-3, 175-pound combo guard from Winter Park (Fla.) High School, tops’s final individual rankings of the Recruiting Class of 2011.

As far as KU’s three signees ...

— Ben McLemore, a 6-5, 185-pound combo guard from Houston’s Christian Life Center, finished at No. 34, down 17 spots from his spring rating of 17.

— Naadir Tharpe, a 5-11, 170-pound point guard from Brewster Academy in Wolfeboro, N.H., dropped from No. 91 to 92.

— Braeden Anderson, a 6-8, 215-pound power forward from Wilbraham and Monson Academy in Massachusetts, remained unranked in the list of 150.

McLemore averaged 16.0 points and 7.0 rebounds in six games at Christian Life after leaving Oak Hill Academy in Mouth of Wilson, Va.

Tharpe averaged 14.5 points and 6.0 assists at Brewster. Anderson averaged 20.0 points and 11.0 rebounds a game at Wimbraham and Monson.

KU continues to pursue three players ranked in the top 150: No. 10 DeAndre Daniels, 6-8, 180, from IMG Academies in Bradenton, Fla.; No. 24 Trevor Lacey, 6-3, 190 from Butler High in Huntsville, Ala., and No. 141 Jamari Traylor, 6-7, 212, also from IMG Academies.

Lacey, who is considering KU, Kentucky and Alabama, told on Tuesday he will visit KU this weekend. He has already visited Alabama and plans on traveling to Kentucky before the May 18 conclusion of the spring signing period.

Traylor update: Traylor, who has visited Indiana, Oklahoma State and KU, may make a final visit to Texas Tech before choosing one of those four schools.

“They are all good schools and great programs. I’m not leaning to one school right now, but looking at them equally,” Traylor told on Wednesday.

Of last weekend’s trip to KU, Traylor said: “I think if I went there, I’d become a lot better. I was able to sit down with coach (Danny) Manning and talk to him during dinner. When I go somewhere, it will be important for me to have a good relationship with the head coach and the rest of the staff. I have a good relationship with coach Self.”

Murray to visit West Virginia: Aaric Murray, a 6-10, 245-pound sophomore at La Salle University, will visit West Virginia this weekend, the Philadelphia Daily News reported Tuesday. Murray, who has announced plans to leave La Salle, did not visit KU last weekend as originally planned. It’s believed that visit will not be rescheduled. He has made a visit to Oklahoma State.


HawkKlaw 2 years, 11 months ago

I agree that every year we would certainly like to have a top guy at the 4-5 spot. And guess what, we have TRob. I'm going to make a "bold prediction" and say that there won't be a better big man in the country next year. Look at how Ohio State did this year with Sullinger being their standout big...they didn't really get a lot of big numbers out of their other post players. If you have a post player on that level, all you need is a role player for the other big. I think we'll get what we need out of Anderson, Withey and Wesley (not to mention there's still a possibility of landing another big). They may not put up big numbers, but they'll be doing the little things to help us win. Plus, with the depth we have at the guard positions, I can see us playing a lot of "4 guards, 1 forward" offense, in which case TRob will be the only big on the court.

And I, for one, am pretty excited about our recruits. BMac will contribute immediately and will occasionally light up the scoreboard. Tharpe probably won't see the court as much as BMac next year but I think over the span of 4 years he will become a very solid pure PG at KU (something I'm excited to see, given that PG was my position back in the day). I already mentioned that Anderson will be a role player that will also contribute a lot next year. May not be as flashy as our 2012 prospects but I think they've got a chance to do great things for KU.


Jack Wilson 2 years, 11 months ago

I just got back to this from yesterday.

What many are missing here .. and the point is probably this simple: Don't get excited about this class. That's it. More precisely, Anderson.

All we are talking about .. everyone .. is the class "on paper." We don't know yet, for sure. But when do you ever know "for sure?" It takes a while. We will never know "for sure" on Selby.

But .. and this is important .. history says that rankings mean something. And all of our discussion is based on rankings, conjecture, and some youtube video, right? That's why the "expert" rankings hold weight, as jayhawk7782 pointed out. Again, they ain't perfect .. but they are pretty darn good. Certainly good enough to make reasonable assessments.

There was a nice post above showing highly rated duds. But those are exceptions to the rule.

I appreciate the optimism of many of you .. even of waywardjay. More importantly, I appreciate the loyalty to coach Self. You guys that see the glass more than half full on our current recruiting class do so for the right reasons. I hope you're right. Really, Tharpe and McLemore are dead solid. The point of discussion is really Anderson and the lack of a top big. If the "best available" guy in April .. Anderson .. hits, we're all happy.

One thought, though. The reason the Anderson issue is so important is because we will be relying upon him next season, given how thin we are. That makes it different. If there was a year we needed a top guy at the 4-5 spots, it's now. So that makes it different. We are relying upon an unranked freshman to be the first guy in at the 4-5 spots, or on a walkon (Wesley). And .. a big "and" .. Withey is one of the top two guys. That is why the Anderson deal, and our lack of a top big is such a huge deal.

And that is why .. on that point .. I see the glass a bit more than half empty.

Now, if we sign Daniels, though he is really a 3, we have a top guy who is 6-8 and that gives us options. My view then tranforms to more than half full.


AZHawk72 2 years, 11 months ago

Great work on the past ratings and numbers, jhawk Mike... wife found mine and pitched them, said they were "disgustingly too much!" She, obviously, wasn't a history major. I don't know if we've ever lost an unrated player as we might with Traylor. I think Langford was unrated by most--I'd take another one of those "finds" anytime. I don't know why, but lately I'm more comfortable with players ranked 50+--they might actually stay 3-4 years, and we can make an attempt at cohesion. The only thing worse than this year's mass exodus is our lack of early signings from 2012--especially, with about 8 listing Kansas as a finalist. We need to close out 2-3 early for a change, so we can maintain a reasonable blood pressure throughout next season.


duanep5ku 2 years, 11 months ago

HawkKlaw I guess some on here base all their knowledge from reading the rankings.

However the NBA ,D league is currently filled with many of their highly ranked players right now.

I'm with you HawkKlaw- how can you judge a player by just those facts alone.

I get the rankings mean something to a lot of people on here but you should not trash a player that is not ranked high if he chooses to come to Kansas.

I mean if you need bodies take what you can get and only time will judge their value to the team,not the rankings.

I know some of us older fans only have to remember 1998

The Danny Manning 1988 team was so depleted of bodies that Larry Brown had to get bodies from somewhere, to even have enough bodies for practice. Larry grabbed Clint Normore off the football team. I mean imagine that Kansas needing bodies so bad that Larry had to bring the program down by bringing in a football player off the bench. What was his rank?at the time. Did he mean nothing to the team because Clint was not a starter? or one of those must have 4,5 star guys. However, what I do remember was the game Clint against OU. He came off the bench to score 7 points in the first half of the Championship game. Including a deep three at the buzzer as the first half ended. KU 50 OU 50 and the rest of the game was mostly Danny and role players contributing what they could in spots and you know what the results were pretty good for Kansas fans.


HawkKlaw 2 years, 11 months ago

How is that statement naive? There's nothing childlike about reserving your judgment until you see the player actually play. I'm not saying its arrogant to for websites to rate players. I just reserve my personal judgment until after I see the kid play. And hypocritical? I haven't made any contradictory statements about this issue.

Did you ever see me bragging when Self landed Selby or Xavier? Nope. I just think its way too early to say things like, "Anderson, Traylor and Kimbo will not be front line players in the Big 12," considering Anderson IS a front line player in the Big 12. That's just a moronic statement.


Mike Bratisax 2 years, 11 months ago

"It is totally arrogant to judge these players before we see them play in a KU uniform."

There is an entire industry built around doing just deny it is either naive or hypocritical.

What couch would waste his time tracking down low or unranked players? Do you think HCBS doesn't use these 'predictors'? Every coach at least looks at these ratings even if they have little chance of landing a 5 star player. No top coach bases his offers solely on rankings but you have to start somewhere and that is what these databases do.

Why was there so much bragging when Self was landing in the top team rankings year after year..until this year. Now ranking players is arrogant? All the regular posters here have looked at Rivals, Scout, or some other database. Is it just coincidence that most of the recruiting talk lately has centered on Lacey and Daniels of late? I guess it would be arrogant to say they are the highest ranked players left and fit our needs.

What is the name of this article? "KU basketball recruits slip in latest rankings"

Somebody is using the ratings as a predictor. Would all the talk about signing Perry Ellis and not letting Cal sign him even be mentioned if he was not in the top 75?

HEM nailed it.


duanep5ku 2 years, 11 months ago

wayward jay good post. To HighElite- I mean,c'mon HighElte Arrogance- do you really want to criticize an incoming player value based on his rankings? before he even arrives on campus to play. I mean do you not even get how arrogant that sounds, I mean if that's the way you think then you would sound like UK fans. 'Oh I know your a KU fan but if we start judging a High school player by just the rankings then our program would be in trouble. I mean do you then want to tell all none 4 and 5 stars not to come here because there not good enough, See how arrogant that sounds.

I do understand what you mean about the other top 100 player's not doing much here recently. However that argument does lose some of it's credibility on here too because their were upperclassmen on the team and did they have a chance to play.

I do know that the current player's left that are committing to Kansas. Those player's may not be as highly ranked as some but they possess athleticism that we will need and they can be good players and contribute to the team. I think we can forget the rankings for now and give them a chance to perform on the court before we bash them on here.

I know this longtime Kansas fan is looking forward to the unknown season that is looming next year without all the one and done,Hoopla surrounding them.


William Weissbeck 2 years, 11 months ago

Unless I missed it, not one mention of Selby, Henry or Wright.


Jack Wilson 2 years, 11 months ago

The answer here is that it is most likely that Anderson, Traylor and Kimbo will not be front line players in the Big 12. Meaning highly probable. Could they be that diamond in the rough .. sure. But 95+% chance they won't. Could one be serviceable? Sure. But you ain't getting a Marcus (#29), Markieff (#49), or TRob (#31). Be real.

For those that have said above to "trust Self's judgment", look at his quote on Anderson .. “Braeden is a guy we identified late,” Self said. “When we felt like the (Morris) twins would probably be leaving, we looked for the best available big guy there was in the country."

Emphasis on "best available." Three things. 1) Not a ringing edorsement. 2) scrambling to fill an opening. 3) What does that say about Traylor if Anderson at the time of the signing was the "best available."

marchphog88 said above that Marcus was a "mid to low ranked recruit." Way off base. Marcus was the #29 player in the country, four stars. It's like the myth that some hold on to about Darnell Jackson .. the guy was four stars, around #54. Or Russell Robinson. A five star guy.

Is there one KU player outside the top 100 that has contributed anything in the last 5 years, other than Brady? No. I tend to think, for some, if we had three five star guys, stars would then mean something. But since we don't have the "stars", then "stars" or rankings suddenly don't matter as much or at all. And we tend to forget or ignore the stars that were attached to our recruits the last five years now that we are "star deficient." Seems like blind homerism to me, wishful thinking, viewing through the reliable crimson and blue colored glasses, or sheer delusion to try to dress up our current situation. It's a silly exercise.

It is what it is, but nothing better .. you can dress me up like a princess, crown me, and serve me tea, but I still ain't a princess.


2 years, 11 months ago

“College hoops teams that could slip in 2011-12”

I had an idea we might land on one of these lists:

Similar to last season though, here’s to looking forward to proving them wrong!


bradynsdad 2 years, 11 months ago

Does anyone know if there is a website or store that sells game DVDs? I have the national title game and I also found a set of DVDs that have the six greatest ku games ever. I was just curious to know if they made anymore DVDs.


yates33333 2 years, 11 months ago

Regarding these rankings does anyone know where Rival ranked the VCU or Butler players?


2 years, 11 months ago

If Daniels was truly as interested in us as some recruiting analysts believed he was a few months ago, it’s a shame we couldn’t have found a way to get him on campus and locked up this semester. A bonus provided by having an extra scholarship lying around, I suppose. Good ol’ hindsight.


Tony Bandle 2 years, 11 months ago

I have become totally confused regarding Deandre.

It would not surprise me if he declared somewhere tomorrow. It would not surprise me if he added 2 or 3 more schools to the mix.

All I can say is his maximum opportunity to gain playing time is with Kansas, despite the Texas defections and the possible redshirt at Duke.

At Texas, he would be with a severely weakened team under a less than stellar coach. At Duke, he be just another top recruit among a large group. At Kansas, he'd be the centerpiece of this year's recruiting class.


WilburNether 2 years, 11 months ago

I'm not sure their rankings mean anything. After all, we got a first-hand look at how last year's Rivals #1 player turned out, didn't we.


Tony Bandle 2 years, 11 months ago

I have seen BenMac play when he was in school in St.Louis. He truly has great talent, however, he needs to discipline his game and realize that he may be the best option and not force to teammates.

The kid is generous to a fault and will need to learn to maximize his skills. I totally agree with Brock...we're not going to see a star right out of the gate, but I feel his developmental upside is huge!!


ABeesus 2 years, 11 months ago

Wilt high jumped for KU as a favor to coach Easton, who was a friend of Dr. Allen. Wilt would just wait 'til the bar was at its highest, and then jump once and win. He often won at a height of 6'5". Doesn't sound like much by today's standards? Until you know that Wilt jumped over w/ a straddle kick! Same as we might jump a fence. His butt was clearing 6'5", often while still wearing his warmups.


Robert Brock 2 years, 11 months ago

McLemore slipped to 54 in the ratings. He earned that rating by not showing ANYTHING on the hardwoods this past season. I have watched the kid personally and can attest that he is raw and needs to learn a lot. That said, I am glad that KU got him. He Will learn a lot; just don't expect to see a polished star right out of the gate.


justinryman 2 years, 11 months ago

Can't help but think that if any of the 3 would be looking at Duke or committed to Duke then their rankings would be hire. Just as if Austin Rivers were to sign with Kansas he wouldn't be the overall #1.

I don't know if its an East coast bias, or KU's problems in the tournament the past 2 years. Or perhaps my conspiracy theory mind is at work?????


hawksfan08 2 years, 11 months ago

Selby was the number 1 overall recruit last year. I think I'll ignore the rankings until I get to watch in person.


Dyrk Dugan 2 years, 11 months ago

who cares what the rankings say? they're all good players, and Self will land a couple more...and next year's class will be very good.

that's the main reason why i wanted the twins and Selby to stay. then next year's class would have shaped up very nicely. but it is what it is....and now next year, has come a year early.


dukehester 2 years, 11 months ago

So doe Rivals have some great track record of rankings related to actual performance once in college....once in NBA? i doubt it! nice fan hype prompter of conversation, but mostly only that. remember, dean's boy had mcd all-americans every year and never won until he went to unc and took matt dougherty's boys all the way!!


Michael Pannacciulli 2 years, 11 months ago

Kenny Gregory was a sick athelete! That dude could jump!


doolindalton 2 years, 11 months ago

The rivals ratings are even less relevant to the actual personnel selection/recruiting process than Mel Kiper's Big Board is to the NFL draft today. It's all for entertainment purposes and not based upon much other than some guy's guesswork .


thaihawk 2 years, 11 months ago

Milt Newton, Kenny Gregory, Archie Marshall, and Darnell Valentine were pretty amazing jumpers/athletes.


Jayhawklegacy 2 years, 11 months ago

Not really anything new in this article. Not sure I care how much the rankings change at this point it really doesn't matter. I'm going to bring up Elijah Johnson on this post. He is one player that I thought just kept getting better through the season. He showed signs of greatness while also not showing up in stretches. I will have to say though I'm not sure the last time we had someone as athletic? Anyone want to take a stab? I'm talking about just pure athleticism, I will go with an old name, how about Lester Earl, remember him? He could really jump out the gym.


KEITHMILES05 2 years, 11 months ago

The reason BMac slid is because of his change of schools and perceived not being the best of behavior. He has ALOT of work to do to become a good player.


kushaw 2 years, 11 months ago

I'm going off topic here since we discussed most of these rankings yesterday when they came out.

1) How about the elephantiasis of Gregg Popovich's balls calling Gary Neal's number for the last second game tying 3 pointer against the Grizzlies? Holy Cow! Not bad for a 26 year old rookie out of Towson hitting the biggest shot of his basketball career. I guess that's what you do when you have already won 4 NBA Championships like Big Papa has. I love the fact that the Spurs have so many Jayhawk ties.

2) How about Mario Freakin Chalmers? 20 points in 31 minutes and 6-12 from downtown! Bibby started and played a total of 4 minutes. Not sure who I root for between Chalmers and Pierce, but I have to go with the Celtics and Pierce because I simply hate Lebron James.

3) D. Arthur is getting decent minutes for the Grizzlies, but I wish he was getting more. He wasn't as efficient as he was the previous game, but he still got 16 minutes. He's playing a nice role, but i would like to seem him get 20-25 minutes instead of his 15-17.

4) I love watching Collison play! He's the ultimate team player and does all the necessary little things to help out the Thunder. It's a shame that Aldrich isn't even on the thunder roster at the moment.

5) Let's hope Hinrich and the Hawks take out the Magic tonight.


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