Friday, August 19, 2011

Former Kansas guard Robinson to play in Paris


Former Kansas University point guard Russell Robinson, who played professional basketball in Barcelona last year, is off to Paris for the 2011-12 season.

“It’ll be pretty hard to top that, but from what I hear, Paris is pretty fun, too,” Robinson said Thursday night from New York’s LaGuardia Airport. He was preparing to board a flight to France, where he’ll be playing for JSF Nanterre this season.

“France is a good league, probably right behind Spain. It’s very, very competitive. It’s going to be a good challenge. I’m looking forward to it,” added Robinson, who has signed a one-year contract. Terms were not disclosed.

The 6-foot-1, 190-pound New York native averaged 9.6 points and 2.8 assists per game for DKV Joventut Badalona in 2010-11.

“The market is funny this year with all the NBA players checking out jobs. You take what is available at the time. This job is definitely the best one,” said Robinson.

The starting point guard on KU’s 2008 NCAA title team had planned on battling for a spot in the NBA this season. The lockout, however, could wipe out the entire 2011-12 NBA campaign.

“Obviously I want to be in the U.S., if there’s any chance to be in the U.S.,” said the 25-year-old Robinson. “I thought this year was a good year to give it a shot. I went to Charlotte and had a good time there (working out with Bobcats prior to start of lockout on July 1). I would have definitely gone to training camp if there was no lockout. It would have been exciting. It didn’t happen. I’ve got to go on. I’m happy with my decision.”

The team is happy to have him.

“He is a very good defender and can score,” coach Pascal Donnadieu said on the JSF Nanterre team website. “He can change the positions 1 and 2 (point and shooting guard) no difference. I expect him to be a leader as he has always on his previous teams.”

Robinson plans on being a true floor leader as his team makes the jump from France’s B League to A Division.

“They’ve got a lot to prove. It’s a young team,” he said. “I can go in and run a team and do what I have to do.”

Robinson doesn’t figure to return to Lawrence anytime soon with his pro season lasting until May 2012.

“I ran into at least five or six Jayhawks today in New York. All the support at KU ... I miss it so much,” he said. “I’ll be back there as soon as I can.”

Lewis a fan of Robinson: Isaiah Lewis, a 6-3, 160-pound junior point guard from Brooklyn, N.Y.’s Christ the King High, tells he looks up to former New York Rice High standout Robinson.

“I’ve talked to Russell a lot about Kansas,” said Lewis, who will attend the Oct. 14 Late Night in the Phog on an unofficial visit. “I’ve known Russell for a long time. I first met Russell back when he played for the New York Gauchos, and I’d go watch him play when I was a little younger and I wasn’t playing AAU yet. He’s really been like a big brother to me.”

Lewis, who is ranked No. 43 in the Class of 2013 by, has received scholarship offers from KU, Arizona, Arkansas, Baylor, Connecticut, Florida, Florida State, Georgia Tech, Ohio State, Oregon State, Seton Hall, St. John’s, Virginia Tech and West Virginia. He’s also heard from Kentucky, North Carolina and Michigan State.


LaJHawk666 6 years, 8 months ago

Congrats and best of luck to Russ Rob! I would love to see him in the NBA someday.

Lewis seems like a good prospect.

Did anyone notice that Zach Peters ranking dropped to a 2-star, 87? Nino Jackson's dropped to a 3-star, 90. Is this normal? Is Zach skipping summer AAU ball part of the reason?

I've only recently started paying attention to off-season recruiting so I'm still learning how all of this works. Thanks to you knowledgeable posters for your insights!!!


Robin Smith 6 years, 8 months ago

First off recruiting rankings are very subjective, fluid, and motivated by the desire to maintain interest in the recruiting service, so they fluctuate a lot.

the real gap between the players' skill/ability/potential is not always as much as the gap between the symbolic, numerical/stellar ratings, especially when you consider the players are all young and raw and will grow a lot.

bottom line, is don't worry about the rankings of future KU players coming out of high school, because A) their Self Rankings are high and B) they are about to learn from the best coaching staff in the country

Jeff Coffman 6 years, 8 months ago

It's interesting to watch the rankings and stars after the names. I remember a few years back, one of our recruits was in the high 80s, it came out that KU was recruiting him and he jumped to like a 94.

It seems this is the backwards trend to what I've seen historically; however, I would say generally, it the person is trying to actively get recruited and the big names are after them, the stock rises. If he commits the ratings seem to go down slightly.

I would also argue that almost always the final numbers are a little bit political, and probably lean towards the ACC and Big East Recruits. However, KU holds its own even in a biased world. For instance last year we ended up with the #1 recruit overall.

lee3022 6 years, 8 months ago

It is so subjective to be listed in the ratings. The access given to a particular rater may influence the stars. Remember also that he did not play AAU ball this summer. He did not need to because he already had his commitment. instead he worked with professional trainers to improve his skill set and tone his body. It sounded like an excellent choice.

Peters is rated by Rivals as a three star:

"#135 Zach Peters F Plano, TXPrestonwood Christian Academy 3 stars 6'9" 235 Kansas"

Although I would freely admit these raters are far better than me, the gap between me and them is likely smaller than the gap between them and the Kansas coaching staff. I have little doubt that Peters will be a big asset to the program.

KULA 6 years, 8 months ago

Wait a minute--is Brady actually older than Russell? Whaaaaat?

Jonathan Andrews 6 years, 8 months ago

Yep, Brady is one week older than Russell. Isn't that peculiar?

yates33333 6 years, 8 months ago

Robinson is a great person. I hope he makes it big in Paris and gets a chance to be in the NBA since that is what he wants. He is already a big leaguer in my books.

Jory Collins 6 years, 8 months ago

LAJayhawk666, yes it is normal for those guys do drop. Zach hasn't been on AAU circuit all year and Nino has big-time academic issues. Peterson was a 5 star as a sophomore, committed, and quit showcasing himself because it was unnecessary. The guy is a beast, go watch some film of him. He's a little stronger version of Nick Collison in my opinion. Not better, but very similar!

Tony Bandle 6 years, 8 months ago

RussRob....learn the language, even if only rudimentally. When an American is speaking to the native Parisians in their own language, they "take pity" on us savages and will speak English and actually be a lot friendlier.

My first line was always, "Veuillez me pardonner comme j'essaie de parlor votre belle lange." translated "Please forgive me as I try to speak your beautiful language."

It worked every time.

And for God's sake, don't say anything nice about I.M.Pei's Glass Pyramid at the entrance to The Louvre....they hate it!!!!!!!

Gary Wirsig 6 years, 8 months ago

Oakville, did you come up with that introductory sentence on your own? Very good!

Tony Bandle 6 years, 8 months ago

Yes, but I embellished it a bit with a tad unrefined accent. I think they found me amusing. :)

cklarock 6 years, 8 months ago

A year in Barcelona and now a year in Paris playing the game you love? We should all be so lucky! Congrats Russell, enjoy the city!

Dan Pawlowski 6 years, 8 months ago

Way to Russell. The best recruiting for Kansas besides the coaches are the fine players that come out of the program . Rock Chalk!

Dan Pawlowski 6 years, 8 months ago

left out "go"...I get so excited about KU BBall. Can't wait till October.

REHawk 6 years, 8 months ago

Humphrey must have picked up that line from Hemingway. I hope to see Russell accumulate enough European or NBA greenbacks to return someday as a permanent resident of Lawrence. Indeed, a champion Jayhawk. His freshman battle with BIll Self now an amusing sidenote in the annals of player maturation at KU.

Tony Bandle 6 years, 8 months ago

Collins to Turkey. Morris and Morningstar to Greece Reed to Belgium Robinson to France Pollard to Mars

Hinrichisgod 6 years, 8 months ago

NEW YOOORK, NEW YORK! Congrats RusRob. Rock Chalk.

pizzashuttle 6 years, 8 months ago

On Rivals - Bossi said that Peters is a 3 star based on his current skills and not because he didn't play enough summer AAU ball. You can click on the free chat that Bossi and Meyers did on Rivals if you want to read his exact words.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.