Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Recruiting hot topic for KU coach Bill Self

Kansas head coach Bill Self introduces members of his staff during the KU men's basketball banquet Monday, April 11, 2011 at the Holiday Inn Lawrence.

Kansas head coach Bill Self introduces members of his staff during the KU men's basketball banquet Monday, April 11, 2011 at the Holiday Inn Lawrence.


Podcast episode


DeAndre Daniels ... and some KU football talk, too

The guys (Tom Keegan, Matt Tait, Jesse Newell) give their takes on recruit DeAndre Daniels and look at KU men's basketball's rotation with or without him. They also give reasons to be optimistic, and pessimistic, about KU's football team in 2011.

Download podcast

Kansas University basketball coach Bill Self, who for eight years has been an active member of the Lawrence community, meets his fair share of townspeople almost every day.

Many aren’t shy about asking him about a part of his job that doesn’t involve coaching.

That’d be recruiting.

“I’d say it’s a good topic of conversation. Recruiting is like a sport in itself,” Self said Tuesday. “Yesterday, probably three or four people at least asked me, ‘Hey what’s the latest?’ Or this or that. All that does is tell me people around here care.”

Fans currently want to know the status of No. 10-rated prospect DeAndre Daniels, who let last Wednesday’s final day of the signing period pass without choosing KU, Texas or Oregon.

Truth be known, nobody knows when the 6-8 forward from IMG Academies in Bradenton, Fla., will select a school.

“In a perfect world, you don’t want to have to sign kids late,” said Self, who did not discuss Daniels specifically Tuesday in accordance with NCAA rules.

“But let’s just call it like it is. We felt like we were going to get Ben McLemore (as far back as) last year.”’s No. 34-rated player signed with KU in April after Ben finally convinced his mom, a Missouri fan, that KU was the place to be. KU fans may have sweated that one out, the coaches not so much.

“The steal of the group, Naadir (Tharpe, No. 92 rated player from Worcester, Mass.) jumped on board early (signing in November),” Self said of the point guard.

“With the (Morris) twins, although we thought we could possibly lose two, we thought the percentage play was we’d lose one. Their both leaving (for NBA) kind of left us scrambling a little bit. Fortunately we were able to sign a couple good kids late (forwards Braeden Anderson, Jamari Traylor) that we wouldn’t have recruited early because we wouldn’t have known of their availability.”

So KU’s class of 2011 currently stands at four and could grow to five.

“We hope to still get one more. If we are able to do so, I’d rank our class up there as a big success,” Self said. “It’s just taken a long time to do so.”

With KU losing much-publicized recruiting battles for the likes of Harrison Barnes, Josiah Turner, Michael Snaer, Terrence Jones, Daniel Orton, LeBryan Nash, Angelo Chol and Trevor Lacey the last two years, there’s been a perception KU has struggled in recruiting.

Self, who has directed KU to seven straight conference titles as well as the 2008 national title, does not necessarily agree.

After all, last year he signed the country’s No. 1 recruit in Josh Selby, he has a budding star in McLemore and still might land Daniels.

“We’ve gotten our fair share of guys, no question, but it’s fair to say we missed out on a couple guys early this year and a couple guys last year. So did Duke, Michigan State, Connecticut, Texas. That’s the way it is for everybody,” Self said.

“Everybody misses. We have not got some guys we thought we were in great shape with. The thing about it, other people work hard, too. That’s recruiting.

“The tendency is with recruiting, when you don’t get a guy, people say somebody cheated or ‘we didn’t want ’em anymore.’ That hasn’t been the case. These respective kids have picked different schools for different reasons. We certainly respect that. We’re not crazy about it, but we respect it. It’s just part of the business.”

And one other thing about recruiting ...

“If you set your goals pretty high, you probably will be told ‘no’ more than ‘yes,’” Self said, adding that he and his staff will continue to target the best high school players in the country.

He said he has a lot to sell at tradition-rich KU, a place he’s piled up 237 wins against 46 losses (.837) in eight campaigns.

“We love it here. Certainly we’ve doubled more than anywhere else we’ve been,” said Self, who coached three years at Illinois, three at Tulsa and four at Oral Roberts. “Where do you go from Kansas? It’s such a good job. To me this is as good as it gets in college basketball.”

If he gets sick of recruiting — and Self said Tuesday he still enjoys most parts of recruiting — there’s always the NBA.

“I don’t know,” Self said, asked if he thinks he’ll ever coach in the pros. “I wouldn’t think so, but I learned through past experiences never to say never. I’m not interested in that right now at all. I’m a college guy. I think my job at Kansas is better than some of the jobs in the NBA. I love it here. I can’t envision me being anywhere else right now. I am not interested in any other job. There’s not many places like this.”

Self — he said he really likes new athletic director Sheahon Zenger — ”I think he’s going to be great” — right now is focusing on adding another piece in recruiting then try for league title No. 8 in a row.

“I am real excited about the challenge of next year, trying to figure out a way to lose seven guys and not take a step backward at all. That’s my challenge right now that I’m going to enjoy.”


Ralster Jayhawk 2 years, 10 months ago

Drgnslayr, Beautiful work! I never knew the breakdowns---but I like Self the best simply because I deeply understand his basketball philosophy, as its the same as mine. Rock-solid D. Athleticism. Smart team play, finding the high% looks. Transition highlights, demoralizing (step on throat) the opponent for their turnover on the other end of the court, etc...And while we place heavy emphasis on fundamentals, this aint Bobby Knight Hoosiers 1976 basketball either--give me the razzle-dazzle plays! Also what a professional yet warm demeanor in front of the camera--good for the university, good for the players to see! The only little things I dont understand are how he decides which "raw talent to play", while other raw talent rides pine...but I guess I already know, since he hates turnovers and mistakes, and hates poor defense. That is the litmus test the raw talent is failing behind closed doors in practice...

Love the recruiting, irrespective of what happens this year. Getting BMac alone makes this yr not-a-failure. Twins both leaving+deciding late simply leaves few credible bigs (wish people get that concept). Final "thumper" concept: Even Deandre Daniels or some other top10 player--what if they come in like #1 Selby or #5 Xavier and only give limited contribution, or are hurt...A top 10 is NO guarantee of a-n-y-t-h-i-n-g!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Ask Duke about Kyrie Irving and if that helped them even get back to the final4???? (nope!). No guarantee.

I also saw 2 years of KU teams simply fail their coach's expectations 2 yrs in a row now. Call a horse a horse.

In the end, give me WildBill anyday for KU! Something for everyone in his system...


nuleafjhawk 2 years, 10 months ago

drgnslayr - thanks again for the info. As long as we're talking about great coaches, we would be remiss not to put ol' roy's name into the hat. His first 8 years (tournament success) at Kansas are as follows:

1996-1997 Sweet Sixteen #4 Arizona 85, #1 Kansas 82 Round 2 #8 Purdue 61, #1 Kansas 75 Round 1 #16 Jackson State 64, #1 Kansas 78

1995-1996 Elite Eight #4 Syracuse 60, #2 Kansas 57 Sweet Sixteen #3 Arizona 80, #2 Kansas 83 Round 2 #10 Santa Clara 51, #2 Kansas 76 Round 1 #15 South Carolina State 54, #2 Kansas 92

1994-1995 Sweet Sixteen #4 Virginia 67, #1 Kansas 58 Round 2 #8 Western Kentucky 70, #1 Kansas 75 Round 1 #16 Colgate 68, #1 Kansas 82

1993-1994 Sweet Sixteen #4 Kansas 78, #1 Purdue 83 Round 2 #5 Wake Forest 58, #4 Kansas 69 Round 1 #13 Chattanooga 73, #4 Kansas 102

1992-1993 Final Four #2 Kansas 68, #1 North Carolina 78 Elite Eight #2 Kansas 83, #1 Indiana 77 Sweet Sixteen #6 California 76, #2 Kansas 93 Round 2 #7 Brigham Young 76, #2 Kansas 90 Round 1 #15 Ball State 72, #2 Kansas 94

1991-1992 Round 2 #9 Texas-El Paso 66, #1 Kansas 60 Round 1 #16 Howard 67, #1 Kansas 100

1990-1991 Championship #3 Kansas 65, #2 Duke 72 Final Four #3 Kansas 79, #1 North Carolina 73 Elite Eight #3 Kansas 93, #1 Arkansas 81 Sweet Sixteen #3 Kansas 83, #2 Indiana 65 Round 2 #6 Pittsburgh 66, #3 Kansas 77 Round 1 #14 New Orleans 49, #3 Kansas 55

1989-1990 Round 2 #7 UCLA 71, #2 Kansas 70 Round 1 #15 Robert Morris 71, #2 Kansas 79


William Blake 2 years, 10 months ago

One last tidbit from the Bill Self vs Coaching Greats.

"Bill Self has a problem in March..."

Comparing these greats, and their first 8 years:

Bill Self - Kansas (1 National Championship, 8 NCAA Tournament Invitations, 3 NCAA Elite Eights, 1 NCAA Sweet Sixteen)

Bob Knight - Indiana (1 National Championship, 4 NCAA Tournament Invitations, 1 NCAA Final Four, 1 Elite Eight, 1 Sweet Sixteen)

Lute Olson - Arizona (7 NCAA Tournament Invitations, 1 Final Four, 2 Sweet Sixteens)

Mike Krzyzewski - Duke (5 NCAA Tournament Invitations, 1 National Runner-up, 1 NCAA Final Four, 1 NCAA Sweet Sixteen)

Dean Smith - North Carolina (3 NCAA Tournament Invitations, 1 National Runner-up, 2 NCAA Final Fours)

John Wooden - UCLA (3 NCAA Tournament Invitations)


HawkKlaw 2 years, 10 months ago

Bill Self landed the #1 recruit in the nation last year and the #8 recruit the previous year. Now all of the sudden he can't recruit? That's just a foolish notion.

Let's be realistic. The Morrii didn't declare until after the tournament loss. I think a lot of people are missing this point (though it only happened a couple months ago lol). If you'll recall, their decision was up in the air all season. Bill Self is great, but he can't read minds (especially if these minds haven't even decided what they are going to do). If the Morris twins knew for sure that they would go pro, they would have let Bill Self know. Bill Self and his staff, in turn, would have landed higher-rated recruits.

What happens next year when he lands a bunch of top 100 prospects? Some of you just like to complain about KU basketball for the sake of it. No matter what Self does, it will never be enough.

I'll pose this question (yet again): Who would you rather have coaching at KU? Coach Cal hasn't won any National Championships. Technically, 2011 was the first year he reached the Final Four. Good recruiting doesn't always equate to winning a National Championship for a program. A coach needs good players, a good strategy, good assistants, etc. Just because our recruiting class is weaker this year, it doesn't necessarily mean that KU can't win the Big 12 title (yet again) or the National title (yet again) next season. It just means we have a weaker recruiting class.

Don't take for granted that KU is already loaded with talent for next year. Maybe not as much talent as a school like KU is used to, but our core is solid: Tyshawn Taylor, Thomas Robinson, Elijah Johnson and Travis Releford. Add BMac and some role player-type big men to that and you've got a squad capable of doing great things. We may be a little weak at the 4 and 5 positions, but there won't be a better forward in the country than Thomas Robinson next season. Not to mention that Tyshawn will be one of the top 10 PGs in the country. That's saying a lot....and Bill Self recruited both of 'em, to my knowledge.


William Blake 2 years, 10 months ago

Follow-up post...

Nuleaf asked me to compare coaches at around the same spot in their career as Coach Self.

I took the same list and computed their first 8 years at their mainstay universities....

CS pulled away even further when compared for the same period:

Bill Self - Kansas 237–46 (.837%)

Bob Knight - Indiana 184–51 (.782%)

Lute Olson - Arizona 190–69 (.733%)

John Wooden - UCLA 161–62 (.721%)

Dean Smith - North Carolina 147-62 (.703%)

Mike Krzyzewski - Duke 174–84 (.674%)


jaybate 2 years, 10 months ago

If Withey can become credible, then Self has the makings of another "great team by March"--a team that could surprise us all as this past season's one did.

If Withey washes out, Self may finally get his Donovan and Roy come down season. The same kind of season Ratso Izzo got this past year.

Self is a human being afterall. I never claim he is super man. I claim he is a basketball genius at masking weaknesses and at playing a brand of ball that often confounds opponents and that often lets him win way more games than most other coaches could win with the same talent.

He is not better than Roy yet. And he is not better than Donovan yet, because they have won more rings the last eight seasons.

But he's damned good and getting better, not worse, even though the recruiting breaks may have gone temporarily against him.

As with this past season, the W&L statement of next year's team could vary considerably.

This past season's team exceeded Self's W&L expectations, but then failed to seize a moment and win a ring when the field of competition seemed to favor it by late in the season.

Next year's team has even more question marks than last season's team going in.

But it potentially has some very strong MUA type players in TT, EJ, Travis and TRob.

Alas, the five is a huge question mark and backups are vastly less experienced and there lies the core problems.

If Self wins 28 games with next year's team, it will be his greatest coaching job yet.

But if Withey becomes a player, he could do so.

None of the above alters the validity of your basic point however; that the recruits he has pulled in so are probably less talented coming in than some of his lesser classes in the past.


jaybate 2 years, 10 months ago

Calipari, landing a huge amount of the top talent each year, can't get a ring, so I'm not sure Self could get a ring with more 5 stars coming in.

But it sure would be better to try to patch the boat with more talent rather than less.

Mother jaybate didn't raise any fools that way.

Bottom line: I'm guessing Self is going to land one, maybe two more guys this season. If one of them is Deandre, it is a very strong class. And if he gets yet another four star, he is sitting pretty, given the good talent he has returning.

I am very bullish on Tyshawn, EJ and Travis by this stage of their careers.

I am very bullish on TRob, but he has the achilles heel of bad FT shooting, a heel that lets such players be highly successful, but also limits the number of rings they can win.

But even with all this bullishness, a lot of green wood is going to have to play and get seasoned the hard way, unless Withey proves a D1 player.

And developing green wood tends to lead to 24-27 win records even with good talent.

The difference in risk between relying on returning players and incoming freshmen, even if the returning players don't have so many stars, is huge. The incoming guy trigger a lot of early losses that the returning guys would miss, and at the end of the season, those incoming freshman, despite their trial by fire, are still physically only 18 year olds.

If we have to start a lot of freshman next year, no matter how many stars they have, it is going to be a 24-26 win season at best.

But if the freshman only have to support, then Self's flare for masking weaknesses can, as usual, take us farther than most suspect before the season starts.

But even then, this should be a 24-26 win team, at best, because of how many green guys are going to have to play significant minutes from the start and what a poor foul shooter TRob is. When your best big man can't hit fouls in XTReme Muscle Ball, he is going to be severely mugged all the time. That means this season is going to rest heavily on who is manning the other big spot. Bill and Danny have their work cut out for them. Withey is standing there due to become a player. The problem is: he was standing there due to become a player this season, and didn't. If Withey cannot become a credible 20 minute man, it could be a very, very tough season, maybe even 20, or fewer wins. I think they are sending Withey to Europe to see if he can.


jaybate 2 years, 10 months ago

When I look around the last 7-8 years, no one program has been dominating the winning of rings.

UCLA, chock full of top talent, went to the Final Four 3 straight times and came away empty.

Butler, without any top talent, went two straight times and came away empty.

UK/Memphis has had hordes of talent and come away empty every time.

Roy got two, but collapsed after his second.

Billy Donovan at Florida has gotten two and he did it with a combination of 2 star bigs and a lot of glue--a combo surprisingly like this past year's KU team, only with fewer injuries.

Everyone else one. Maybe Calhoun got two?

Regardless, it is no fun losing early.

But it is no fun losing late either.

It is no fun losing. Period.

Winning one occasionally, or frequently, is the only thing that really feels fun and makes the end of season losses tolerable at all.

And Self has won a ring, as many as anyone but Donovan and Roy, that last 8 seasons.

I gotta believe that had this past season's team been healthy for the Madness--Tyrel no foot problem, Selby no foot problem, and Withey healthy and strong enough to play at a respectable weight--that this past season's team would have won it all going away; that would have been two for Bill, too.

Cole's team probably would have won one, too, had he been at all healthy. That would have been three.

Health is something the gods control.

Wooden said his first ten teams could have won it a time or two, but for injuries and a few of his mistakes.

Self can say about the same thing at about the same stage of his career, though he can also say that he did win one.

So: I can take the unpredictable exits, especially with the sparkling W&L statements, because unlike so many others, Self won one ring in this stretch and is a decent bet to be entering into the prime of his coaching career, despite next year maybe being a tough season on the W&L statement.

Does this recruiting class being less than stellar so far mean curtains for KU this next season?

I am not sure. I am not sure even a great recruiting class can fill all the wholes this team will have due to losses to graduation and the NBA.


jaybate 2 years, 10 months ago


As, Slayr has presented some informative facts, so have you. I am persuaded by you that without another add of a highly ranked prospect, this will in fact rank among the weakest classes, despite the numbers, he has recruited at KU.

But I also think it will be a good class to add quality players to next year and the next. By this I mean, I think some of these bigs will become solid muscle backups, which we have needed more of than we have had in the past.

Self has lost out on many top bigs the last few years for many reasons and has seemed to have chosen not to sign many lesser bigs, hoping instead to land a super big the next off season.

But I think coming up short handed last season, plus Butler's and VCU's successes with the lesser bigs, has persuaded him this year to sign the lesser bigs now and avoid ever getting short handed again. Top bigs are only going to be around for one season. They can't be cornerstones anymore than Josh Selby could be a cornerstone on the perimeter. You've got to have lots of the middling players and fit the superstars in where they turn up for a year.

Or you go all out Calipari and World Wide Wes.

Bottom line, there are so many injuries in college basketball, now that it is played like football on wood, that you have to stay fully stocked at all positions, even if some of them are just capable of applying muscle, and even if some of the kids get diguruntled with insufficient PT.

Early this past season, it seemed Self had too much depth to keep everyone happy. But by season's end, it became clear that KU would really have come unstuck with any fewer players. In fact, in the end, he didn't have enough bigs.

It would be great if he could land the superstar bigs all the time, but the teams that have been landing them haven't been doing significantly better than Self. Most haven't been matching his W&L Statements. And in the Madness, it doesn't really matter whether you go out in one, or get to the Finals, all that matters is if you win the ring when you get to the Finals.


William Blake 2 years, 10 months ago

Lesson #3,984 for the Bill Self Naysayers:

"Oh, boo hoo... Bill Self can't recruit. Bill Self can't coach big games. Bill Self can't tie his shoelaces correctly!"

"Bill Self only has a slight win-percentage advantage over his coaching peers. Boo hoo..."

Bill Self - Kansas 237–46 (.837%)

John Wooden - UCLA 620–147 (.808%)

Mike Krzyzewski - Duke 827–225 (.786%)

Dean Smith - North Carolina 879-254 (.775%)

Lute Olson - Arizona 589–188 (.758%)

Bob Knight - Indiana 661–240 (.733%)


Drew Doerfler 2 years, 10 months ago

Royce was in the rankings right around where quinton thomas and our new recruits are....right around 100 or over...and both Royce and Thomas transferred...I remember reading the optimism over these 2 players last couple of years also....but unfortunately, the odds are in favor of the players at these ranking, not contributing, or becoming role players as juniors/seniors.....optimism is nice, but it should be realistic...maybe Traylor becomes a stud, and i hope that he does.....but it is unlikely at this point......especially in the near future


William Blake 2 years, 10 months ago

Let's see... Brad Stevens at Butler has recruited how many 5-star high school recruits? Uh.... NONE! Never a Top 25 recruit.

Hayward was only offered scholies from IUPUI, Purdue and Butler and wasn't near the Top 100.

Howard was either a 3 or 4-star recruit... depends who you talk to. He was the first Top 100 recruit ever landed by Butler back in 07-08.

And these were the best players Butler had...

But... if we can't land some Top 10 recruits CS doesn't know how to recruit. Gheez, folks, take a break. There is so much more to recruiting than just looking at a recruit's rankings and position. More important is how a recruit will fit in with your existing team. I'd take a 100th-ranked player who fit well any day over at Top 10 recruit where there clearly wouldn't be chemistry. Some parts of the game you can't coach or manufacture. The magic is there, or it isn't.


jhawkr 2 years, 10 months ago

HCBS can't really comment much on recruiting. Do you think he is going to say, "We sucked this year. Our guys just don't stack up next year." ?

Of course he is going to say good things and hope he can pull a rabbit out of a hat. Like it or not, but we have to hope he can. Having a highly ranked class helps and looks good till they all take the court in the fall. As fans we create a lot of the drama and pay way too much attention to the recruiting agencies and what nots. It's hard not to get upset when we continue to lose recruits to other top schools (especially Calisleazy and Roy). Illegal things are done and terrible promises made to too many athletes at many colleges. At KU, we have to hope that isn't how things are done or the end result could be us all talking about what could have been. With the top athletes, it's rarely about winning and an education, and more about playing time and stats.

As for whether we do or don't get Daniels ............. Who cares anymore ? At this point he might be more qualified for the KU drama department then Allen Fieldhouse. We all assume he graduated high school and qualifies for admission. But is that why he is stalling or is it simply waiting for a better deal ?!


loyal2thaphog 2 years, 10 months ago

I can't believe some of the opinions being stated by some of the posters on here, some of whom I generally tend to respect on many/most issues. Those who think this is an extremely weak class or the worst we have had in years need to get over the hype that is the espn/rivals rankings. It is so easy to read into/project what a class is going to do before these kids ever step foot on campus. Take last years recruiting class for example. Granted, we didn't have too many spots to fill but look at that class now. Selby, after the injury, was by all accounts a disappointment. And guess what, he's not going to be sticking around to prove it was a fluke. As for Royce Woolridge...Royce Woolridge who? He never played, and he too, is not going to be here next season. I for one am extremely excited and pleased about this years recruiting class for the following reasons.... 1. Due to the general consensus surrounding BenMac and Naadir, I don't think feel the need to explain my general sentiments, except that I am very excited to have a true point guard as accomplished as Naadir coming in is who isn't going to be excepted to run the show as a frosh. 2. Re: Anderson and Traylor.... are you guys aware that they didn't start playing basketball until sometime in H.S.? I think both were at least Sophomores. 3. Both are going to come in here and work. 4. Danny Manning. Two kids who have been playing organized basketball for only 2-3 years... All I see is potential and room to grow. 5.I personally think that Anderson is going to be solid at the 4 spot, maybe not this year, but with a year under Self/Manning, no doubt. 6. When I heard we signed Traylor, I was very excited. Beyond the obvious that we are thin in the post, I think Traylor has quite possibly the most upside of any player we signed. Obviously, BenMac doesn't have as much to gain b/c he is already a very good/gifted/exceptional player. But, beyond the fact that Traylor still might be filling out/growing, he looks like match-up problems across the board. To me, he looks like an oversize SF. Being a former football player, at the very least, should allow him to bang at a very competitive level. I don't know if he is really 6-7, but if I recall correctly, the twins both measured in somewhere around there at the combine.


AZHawk72 2 years, 10 months ago

Wow, the weather must be as bad as I've read/seen on the overloaded informational highway today. Everyone seems to have that shut-in, I must be heard before the big one hits mentality. These can't be the Kansas Citians I was raised with many years ago. They were more like the Norman Rockwell painting after the flood hit KC--they just rolled their sleaves up, dug in, and worked to make things even better than they were before tragedy struck. This year's team may need to be of that stock and roll their jerseys up and get after it after the flood of exits. If anything is clear to me about this year's recruiting, it's that the coaches didn't seem to expect this many to depart this late. And as far as Daniels goes, it could be worse. "Dude, hurry up, do you want the #4 or the #5--hey, the waitress is reaching for a steak knife, DeAndre!"

I'm happy with what we have, all things considered, and consider the glass half full, as several of you have expressed, due to late decisions leading to even later recruitments. I like a team that's going to have to scratch its way to a lot of victories because come tournament time they won't be weighted down by expectations like so many recent groups have been.

This, too, will pass, just as the weather will. I worry about all you guys in the "alley" and hope you get through this in good shape. And out here in Mesa, Arizona, I just saw a cloud, which looked confused. I directed it southward, thinking you guys have already had enough.


Jayhawklegacy 2 years, 10 months ago

True... Ku fans are spoiled! I must say we did have a lot more mc'd's all americans 2-3 years ago. That worries me, but coach self as being a coach does not. I think he is a master mind of basketball knowledge! I have always said that he may not be the best motivator, but the best coach! He does not seem to have the same motivation for games as previous ku coaches. I like coach more then previous coaches for the reasons of personality, coach strategy and recruiting! What i don't like is we seem to lose to mediocre teams and blow out teams that are great! That is my only criticism of CS. I just wish our players would play juiced against every team we played, if not put in the next five players!!! Remember those days??


kushaw 2 years, 10 months ago

RSCI rankings had him #9 out of High School. Not sure what RSCI averages the recruiting sites (Scout, Rivals, etc etc) into one comprehensive ranking.


jayhawks25 2 years, 10 months ago

Look at all the recruits Bill Self has gotten in the past years. I mean most of the players we have/had weren't the top 10 of recruits. Mario Chalmers hit the last second buzzer beater to lead Kansas into O.T. and eventually win that game and he's was't in the top 30 of recruit's. Bill Self has turned alot of guys into studs so I think we should worry about recruiting but, not as much as some of you guys on here.


Make_Ur_Free_Throws 2 years, 10 months ago

"Can't recruit"

"Can't coach recruits"

"blah, blah, blah"

Do we really need another thread about this? So much said from the sidelines from people who have no idea what they are talking about.

The dogs bark, but the caravan moves on!

Rock Chalk!


Jeeveshawk 2 years, 10 months ago

Everyone seems to be saying self is bad recruiter becuase this one year he has gotton no top ten recruits. Yea, this bad recruiter can only get crapp-ass players like... Mario, Brandon, Aurthur, Darnell J., Sherron, Terrell, Brady, X. Henry, Selby, TRob, The Morris Twins, Elija,and Ben McLemore. Gosh self get your head out of your ass, any old coach can do that!


Ralster Jayhawk 2 years, 10 months ago

The difference between some ku alums, even in the same family: My brother-in-law, an aggressive, competetive-type persona doesnt think much of low-ranked/unranked recruits: "dude, he's unranked! he's gonna contribute...or, there's a reason he was not ranked in the top whatever". He rarely had any respect for Brady. He is also very results-right-now analyzer, so thinks very little of Withey. Calls him 'injury-prone'... He is constantly telling me Justin Wesley will "never play".

Me, on the other hand, always am waiting to see what 'sleeper' player the KU staff can develop into a contributor. I tell him Traylor has the motor and physical tools. I have been up and down on Brady, (and Reed to a lesser extent). I think Withey will do whatever he is capable of quite well, but he will never be a 250 lb banger. My pick for "sleeper/surprise" will be Justin Wesley--I personally saw him a leaper, finishing/blocking/rebounding around the rim. You cant teach instinct, and he has it. Like Chalmers and Russell did. He has intangibles. Just no stats. Self is also the master at fitting the pieces of different strengths/weakness together to mask weaknesses. How good is the opposing coach at unmasking & exploiting us? Thats the high-level chess match with whatever players are in the lineup in a given season.

My money on Self.


jaybate 2 years, 10 months ago

And where is memhawk today?

There haven't been any twisters in Graceland, have there?

We need him to round out the choir.

Up Cimba!


jaybate 2 years, 10 months ago

While it is true that HEM's assiduity regarding basketball facts, especially recruiting facts, is admirable, impressive, reliable, and indicative of a commitment to truth and justice, I believe HEM also cites certain of these facts with particular emphasis in hopes of triggering ralster to post responses as frequently as possible. Why? Because HEM is all Jayhawk and knows we all enjoy seeing ralster's avatar as often as possible!



Robert Robinson 2 years, 10 months ago

I love looking at so many peoples comments about how bad you think Self is at recruiting, and then looking at the season stats. Self should take that as a compliment. To bring in "bad" recruits and still win conference championships for the past 7 years really says something about his coaching. Yes, rankings do mean something, but not every thing.
By the way, serious question, has a one and done recruit won an NCAA championship yet?


Jeeveshawk 2 years, 10 months ago

It is difficult to get the most out of your players if they are decimated so much like last year. Travis, Thomas, Josh, Elijah and TyTay have all gotton hurt at various times over the years and Bill Self pulled through because of an ocean-deep roster. But this year if that many players get hurt it will be hard to pull through with our 2012 roster.


Jack Wilson 2 years, 10 months ago

Just got back and read most of the discussion above .. Ralster, KUShaw, drgnslyr .. high quality stuff, as usual. And marchphog88, FreddyD, lee3022 .. and the others on topic, great points.

And don't mistake my strong opinions for arrogance .. I saw that above. I know I'm only right 95% of the time .... which trails Jaybate by 2.2%. (margin of error +/- 1.3%)

I do find it a bit interesting the difference of opinion on the topics of our recruiting efforts and our prospects for next season. One thing we know for certain, coach Self will get the most out of what he's got through conference play, at least. And watching the play and contributions of Anderson and Traylor will answer a lot on the value of rankings. It will for me.

Here's hoping rankings were wrong on those guys.


UncleMiltyN 2 years, 10 months ago

I would ask some of the people posting above to stop whining, but I actually love every minute of it. Talking about Jayhawk basketball in June is a luxury I never want to relenquish.

I will ask for them to clearly state what they expect from Self and his staff. I'm a little confused.

Maybe Self already answered my question with his "Recruiting is like a sport in itself" comment. Winning the B12, 30 games a year, and having a realistic chance to win the NC every year is only part of it. I take it we need to get the top 5 recruits every year as determined by averaging the lists from every major media outlet? Lord knows they always get it right.

KU fans are competitive and spoiled. I know I am.


KansasComet 2 years, 10 months ago

I am looking forward to next year. It will be nice to see what our returning players can do, when placed in a leadership position. It will also be nice to see what are newcomers can do when given the opportunity. Whatever has happened in the past is just that, and we can't change it. I am glad Bill Self is the Coach! He is not perfect, no one is. He could probably come to each of our jobs or homes and point out things that we could do better. Recruiting this year is fine. We have kids coming in that win games. That is what we need, winning players, with winning attitudes.

We lost VCU for the same reason we lost to UNI. We as a group were afraid of failure, and played tight. The team was tight and the coach was tight. In a lose one and you are done competition, it happens. It does not mean we are not a great team every year - we are! It just means the coach and the players not only have to defeat the opponent, they have to defeat themselves, by getting out of their own way sometimes.

Kansas will be fine, just like we are every year. Enjoy the wins, and get over the losses!


lee3022 2 years, 10 months ago

It is amusing how many posts a couple of trolls can generate here.

The continuing success of KU basketball (and if you disagree with this stop reading now as there is no hope for you to understand) is attributed to two primary factors:

1, KU is simply a great institution. It offers students every facet to succeed in gaining an top quality education in nearly every field of their choosing, in an environment unlike any other. If offers to basketball players outstanding practice facilities and Allen Fieldhouse which is renowned across the nation as the finest atmosphere for college basketball ever. It overs an unrivaled history from coaches James Naismith to Phog Allen to Larry Brown to Bill Self and from players Clyde Lovellette to Wilt Chamberlain to Darnell Valentine to Paul Pierce to Mario Chalmers and many more.

  1. Head coach Bill Self and an amazingly gifted staff of coaches and trainers who recruit throughout the country (one of only a handful of coaches who can do so) competing for the top talent in the country year after year. A winning percentage at the top of the country attests to the ability to translate recruiting to success on the floor. Multiple consecutive championships in one of the most difficult conferences in the country further demonstrate this prowess as does the continuing success of its alumni.

Given these factors there is every reason for the Jayhawk fans to relax and rejoice. There are some positives in this year's recruiting class that might be unnoticed.

A, It is necessary for the program to maintain a stock of supporting players who mesh well, work on their games, play good defense, learn to shoot and score, build their bodies and form the core of the teams. Examples of this would include Kevin Pritchard, Tyrel Reed, Brady Morningstar, Darnell Jackson, Russell Robinson, and Sasha Kaun. None of these players were highly recruited or nationally ranked (as far as I can remember). All of them played on FInal Four teams and were National Champions. This year's recruits, except for Ben, seem to fit this description. Not all of them will stay but most of them are four year players who can reform the core of the team beyond next year.

B. It is also necessary to have a couple of primary players who can get their own shot, either from the perimeter or post, and dominate most opposing players. This is more difficult to achieve. For next year Thomas Robinson and Tyson Taylor meet this description and Ben and Deandre are additional arrows for the quiver.

C. Nearly every year at last one player shocks the media in coming out playing far better than in previous years. This is an attribute to the training and coaching staff and will likely be seen again this year.


Ralster Jayhawk 2 years, 10 months ago

"Tourney performance" keeps coming up in's the simplest thought about it: "I dont know why those guys shot so bad vs. VCU? Our guys shot us out of the gym--some of the same guys vs. UNI."

Which spawns further questions: how do you differentiate between role/glue players (pucker in the big lights), and true goto guys? Recruiting rank is a partial answer, as the confidence it breeds in a player is good. Also, higher ranked players are often the goto-guy on their bigcityhighschool team and often have had to 'carry'/try-to-deliver in high-level games. Josh would've been awesome in yr2...

This will touch a nerve for some here, if we compare Reed+BStar (both unranked) vs. Chalmers (McDAA) + RussRob (#27). How did they do in their careers? How did they do in the bright lights? At what point does a player start to feel he isnt up to the level of the opposition? Does that ranking level haunt him subconsciously? This all is pure conjecture on my part--just fodder for discussion. The counterargument is, well then why would a team "pucker up" vs a nonblueblood UNI or VCU? Is it just the "big lights"?

You want answers, Im trying to consider in-game-psyche based hypothesis. Because our upperclassmen-dominated team ran their offensive sets quite well in setting up the high%shot by a Twin or kick-out to a pretty open trey shooter. Was it coaching? Well we had all 9 of our legit 35+% trey shooters attempt treys--so he let everyone try. When do you bench your green-light senior shooter?

Also consider the case of McM. Not the highest ranking, but turned himself into a lotto-level player. Definitely had swagger & talk--and he delivered the stats. I appreciate his "it was my fault" responsibility, but it wasnt his fault. Most consistent player all season, and under the big lights. Earned his wings.

Another curious case about "in-game psyche": why is making 3s, and missing 3s almost seem 'infectious' at times?

Self wants to examine his pre-Elite8 preparation--well, how to get guys to "not pucker" under the big lights? And if that is innate personality, then how does he identify it &select for "ptp'ers" during the recruiting process???? How on earth do you predict that? Its not a question of toughness. Self teams arent "soft". Is he going to ask the offense to run any better? Offense ran pretty well vs UNI + VCU, setting up good look after good look. Its not like it was turnover city. FT% suggests pucker-factor, and that obviously was 'infectious' also. Im uncertain that Self can "fix" what happenned vs. UNI+VCU, other than change players (fresh mentalities to work with).


jaybate 2 years, 10 months ago

"Some XTReme Drills Reportedly Being Considered to Speed the Toughening of KU's Incoming Bigs"

~In rebounding drills, Manning and Dooley will fire on them with assault rifles.

~At the training table, battle-hardened TRob will deliver a forearm smash to each young big as he sits down to dinner.

~Coaching staff will fire pneumatic staple gun barrage at bigs, if they dunk like they want to star on Glee.

~The lanes on the practice court will be converted to piranha-infested pools and the young bigs will have to jump across them to get rebounds.

~After being fed raw meat for a week, the young bigs teeth will be cleaned with jack hammers.

~Once a week coaches will run over the young bigs with a Chevy Suburban.

~Young bigs will be ordered to bungee jump from the top of the Campanile with a bungee cord one foot too long.

~Every Wednesday in practice, the AFH scoreboard will be dropped on the young bigs.

Every Thursday, the young bigs will run practice laps in kerosene soaked jocks ignited with tiki torches.

(Note: All fiction. No malice.)


William Blake 2 years, 10 months ago

I'm glad CS isn't another Calipari. Let Cal have his team full of OADs. He certainly hasn't obtained any March hardware with that approach... and if he does win one, so be it.

Who the heck wants a team of players that are all gone after one year? Leave that type of recruiting for the Kentuckys in the world.

I'm quite satisfied that we win the big tournament once in a while, but we also maintain a quality program with many players that really qualify as student/athletes. Remember... this is college basketball.

I am very happy our college team doesn't mimic a pro team. When I want to watch the NBA, I watch the NBA. When I want to watch KU basketball, I like watching KU basketball that has mostly players who are real student/athletes... players who want to earn their degrees, along with a shot at a title.

We are one rule change away from turning the tide completely on clowns like Calipari. Someday soon the rules will probably flip to how they go in college baseball (either no college or 3 years mandatory, or 21 yrs old). And when that happens Calipari will be looking to the pro ranks for his next coaching job.

I can think of far more negatives for recruiting OADs than positives:

  1. Inevitably they bring chaos and distractions with them. Too many media people constantly looking for a story on them while totally missing the real story on a 4-yr athlete that can really play.

  2. They bring attitude issues with them. Many are used to being pampered so will expect special treatment in college.

  3. They bring unrealistic expectations with them... both from themselves, and from fans and media hounds.

  4. Since they only play one year, they dictate how they are coached because they need that entire year to specifically work on team integration.

  5. They affect the rest of the team in a negative way because of all the special attention they receive. They are given immediate PT whether they deserve it or not because they need the PT to theoretically become productive in the very immediate future. Tick tock, the clock is running! Meanwhile... other quality players who have worked diligently for longer than a few months, are passed over for PT. Unless you have a complete team of OADs (like Kentucky) you will have problems developing true team chemistry.

  6. Since they are only in the program for one year (actually, less than a year) they only offer a tiny period of productivity. Even for the top talent, it takes time for them to mesh and become productive... so we are talking about only a month or two of real productivity.

  7. OADs still use scholarships and a place on the roster... so they take a space you could have given to a developmental player that will develop into a productive player you will have for years.

  8. In order to become a great team there has to be cohesion and continuity. You don't get those qualities from OADs.


Steve Gantz 2 years, 10 months ago

Self is going to be fine, got caught in a pickle this year as the article points out. Everyone just take 2 rockchalks and the Jayhawks will be AOK. After all, we are Kansas, NCAA participants every year since 86 (except the year they wouldn't let us). Home of NCAA champions, All Americans and a tradition that goes right to the heart of the game. (I still hope we get Daniels)


jaybate 2 years, 10 months ago

"Recruiting is like a sport in itself." --Bill Self

"If recruiting were to be included in the next Olympiad, Self would contend for a gold medal." --jaybate


Ralster Jayhawk 2 years, 10 months ago

HEM, Either we are a more 'cosmopolitan mix' of fans than everyone thinks (because of the seemingly contradictory comments from the opposing-view camps evident on this site, and Im talking about the ku people, not the trolls)or some arent realizing the complexity their theory about recruiting poses-->Some take the moral/ethical high ground and decry the 'physicality' of the Twins, some calling them thugs and feeling "that" should never be recruited to be a part of Kansas basketball. While others may point to KY as an alternative "example" and say "look, they got to the Final4"... but there will always be the ethical argument regarding Calipari's shady dealings/3 dirty programs (even at KY: KanterGate)--do we want "that" at KU?

HEM, Im not picking on your post, but just offerring food for thought to others in our fanbase that are still upset about the season (like me) and that we "didnt make the Final4", and may take the simple, grass-seems-greener road of seeing Calipari get "all the recruits"+"make the Final4" and think we should be calling Houston about now about a "problem". The 'big perspective view' that softens my bitterness is this-->First, Self himself is ridiculously competetive, hates to lose, and his own oft-stated goal is to "make the Final4", so I put alot of trust in his hands just like nations put trust in top generals like Patton, Monty, or Rommel. Second, think about other blue-bloods: UNC with their NIT-experience (imagine that scenario for KU?); Duke with NO final fours x 10 l-o-n-g y-e-a-r-s except for last year's surprise win. Couldnt even get back to the final4 with Kyrie Irving back (you think some Duke fans are pissed about coachK?). And KY, having to resort to the high-priced-hooker/HeidiFleiss of college coaching & his methods to get them their first Final4 in a long, long time. A game where Duke underperformed and couldnt hit a 3 to save their royalblueass (sound familiar?), and then consider the rollercoaster @UCLA, although Howland seems to have them on the upswing after we absolutely gutted them in their own gym in 09-10. Thirdly, consider past KU coaches, like Roy. We had good/great teams under him also, but didnt make the final 4 numerous times when we all thought we should have. Lastly, can probably say each year's 1 and 2 seeds (whoever) in the Madness have their fans believing they deserve to be in the Final4 (with some good reasons, obviously). Its just not going to happen every year, regardless of the recruiting.


Martini_Boy 2 years, 10 months ago

So many post and so few have any credible knowledge of what they are talking about. How many times have you seen any ANY AAU kids play? 98% of the folks on this board don't even know where to go to see a game or could tell you the name of a team these kids play on. Yet they are on this board telling everyone how good or bad Bill Self is doing recruiting. I frankly don't care about your opinions. We pay that man a lot of money and it's his job to do the best he can with what he gets. After being beaten by teams that have 5 starters that never come close to a top 50 rating I'm sure he cares less and less just what the kid is rated and more and more on how he see's the kid fitting in and contributing here at KU. Richard Scott sure wasn't at the top of everyones list. Nor was a Steve Woodberry but who wouldn't take either of these guys for our team right now. I believe and after that I'll live with the results...


Jeeveshawk 2 years, 10 months ago

I do have one big concern though. I don't think Tharpe can handle playing major minutes at PG, and I'm wondering who will take most of the time as floor general when tyshawns game is off, becuase im sure we can all agree he has a jeckell and hyde situation...


Joel Hood 2 years, 10 months ago

Self has already stated that he needs to figure out the problem at the Elite 8 level. Why is that even being discussed in this forum? Anyone that can equate Self's recruiting success as "good for conference wins but not national titles" seriously needs to exit the echo chamber.

Some of you posters (posers?) out there think that Self is slipping because he doesn't always grab from the pool of top 25 talent. This is ridiculous. Recruiting is about always looking forward and keeping the right mix. Of course you want some Selbys and Xaviers in the mix, but just going after guys in the OAD pool is stupid. A great team has a mix of stars, experience, and role players. OADs are notorious for bad chemistry. Keep that in mind then next time you feel the need to rip on Self for not recruiting like Calipari.


Jack Wilson 2 years, 10 months ago

Phog1004: Before you go criticizing Kentucky too quickly, take note of their final four this past season. Final fours mean more to some, than others, I know. It's not our way, but it worked this past season. Now, sanctions may follow.

Othewise, the responses are a bit humorous. Cast a little objectivity on a parade of homers and the knives come out.

Missed points and a lot of excuses.

No one has said that we have to stockpike top 10 talent every season, as FreddyD suggests has been argued, nor have I said we even really have to get one top 10 guy at all. Strawman arguments. One top 60 big man would have been nice. One. And one Top 60 guard would have been nice. One. To add to McLemore. Not too high of expectations for a top 5 program, is it? And FreddyD's mention that Self did basically all he could in recruiting on "short notice." Really? What short notice? Coaches "over-recruit" all the time. Who didn't know Selby was a one and done? Marcus was on draft boards at 15 or so last summer. Self, like us, knew losing those two were clear possibilities. Markieff stepped up. But Self surely had better knowledge on his strides in practice than we did. I get that Kieff surprised this season, but Selby and Marcus leaving should not have been any surprise.

If one claims that Self was "surprised", why was he even recruiting Chol, Nash, Wiltger etc.? See, he wasn't surprised. He was on top of it. He was recruiting those spots. He just missed. So to say he missed because he was surprised is just wrong. But to say he missed because recruits may have seen a huge logjam .. Morrises, TRob .. that makes perfect sense (notwithstanding that other schools get top guys even with logjams).

But I get it .. we can't get everybody. We will lose out. Every school does. And I didn't even really blame Self .. I said that even if he does everything right, we might not get some top guys. And my top is really top 40-50. That is where the core of the best talent comes every year. Some guys flop in that range, some surprise outside of it. But that's the best group. Every season.

And Oakville's comment on void vs. volume is probably right. I'm really more of a glass is half full kind of guy.

But my end-game perspective is a Final Four. It is not competing with Missouri or Baylor for another Big 12 title (yawn). My view and comment on the state of our squad relates to our ability to compete for a Final Four. And, as we look at it on May 25, we are really thin in two major areas.

Look at Jeeveshawk's rotation above. We are relying entirely on freshmen off the bench? On only one that is a top 50 type guy? Sorry, he forgot Teahan and Wesley, two walk-ons. And that doesn't cause concern? I don't get that.


Jeeveshawk 2 years, 10 months ago

My KU 2012 rotation 1-Taylor (Tharpe off bench) 2-Johnson (Tharpe could come off bench to be sg as well) 3-Releford (McLemore off Bench) 4-Robinson (Traylor and Anderson off bench) 5-Withey (Traylor and Anderson off bench)


Jeeveshawk 2 years, 10 months ago

My KU 2012 rotation 1-Taylor (Tharpe off bench) 2-Johnson (Tharpe could come off bench to be sg as well) 3-Releford (McLemore off Bench) 4-Robinson (Traylor and Anderson off bench) 5-Withey (Traylor and Anderson off bench)


FLJHK 2 years, 10 months ago

I'm "choosing" to agree with Oakville's sentiments above.

With all the sadnesss and ugliness going on in the world, being able to vigorously talk Jayhawk hoops in May is just a beautiful thing.

Rock chalk!


KUnorth 2 years, 10 months ago

Bottomline with Coach Self is his proven track record of development. When someone needs to take a step forward, Coach Self develops that kid to be ready. I can think of when Sherron was a turnover disaster his freshman year, offensive charging, throwing the ball into traffic without a purpose point guard. By the time he took over at PG he was ready.

Same thing with Cole...when he took over the position after the mass exodus after the championship year, he was ready and became the most improved big guy in the nation.

Jackson and Arthur were forced to step up with Julian Wright departing early.

T-Rob, Tyshawn are on everybody's map to take a step forward, but we have seen a ton of playing time out of them. I'm watching for the Elijah, Withey, and Releford's to take the largest step forward.

Bill Self would do better going after the just the Naadir Tharpe's of the world and develop them for 3-4 years and keep them rolling through. I think the one and done players are fools gold for colleges and especially for Self's coaching style and history.


milehighhawk 2 years, 10 months ago

Self is one of the 5 or 10 best recruiters today.


kushaw 2 years, 10 months ago

Here is my take on on this 2011 class:

1) KU, Self, and All of us felt really good about Josiah Turner coming to KU. The only problem is the "Timing" of his commitment. Nobody knew what Selby was going to do and with a backcourt of Taylor, EJ, and Selby.........I can understand why Turner chose Zona. If Turner would have waited in his recruitment, good chance that KU could be his choice. With that said, with MoMo Jones now transferring back to the East Coast it looks like Turner is going to be handed the Lexus of the Zona basketball program and so far it looks like he made the best choice.

I know Tharpe isn't as "Sexy" in the rankings as Turner, but I honestly believe that Turner/Tharpe will be a wash over the long run in terms of productivity at their college programs. Yes, Turner may only play 1 or 2 years at Zona, but I think Tharpe is going to be an extremely good point guard in college and at Kansas. May not be as flashy, but he knows how to run a team.

2) KU, Self, and all of us all really thought Bradley Beal was going to become a Jayhawk. I have to admit, that loss stings a little because Beal is the real deal. I know KU signed McLemore, but then again KU also thought it was going to get Beal and McLemore. With that said, losing out on Lacey as well makes the Beal decision sting a little more. I will admit that losing out on Beal first, Lacey second, and if KU loses out on Daniels that that will be a major blow. I think McLemore may be able to shoulder some of this load if Daniels goes elswhere, but it will be a huge blow in recruiting at this position from a 2011 perspective.

3) As far as the Big men, none of us knew what Marcus or Kieff were going to truly do and quite honestly they played well enough that they both deserved to leave for the NBA. The only problem with players like Marcus and Kieff is that if they do leave then that leaves you in a hole with recruiting. This I can live with because nobody knew for certain until really March that the Twins were going to leave. KU did the best with the situation that was presented IMO by picking up Anderson and Traylor. Every good post in the 2011 class committed by Feb and with the uncertainity of the Twins.......why would come in and play behind Marcus, Kieff, and possibly Withey? It is what it is.

I would say that the only big strikeout, should it happen, would be if KU lost out on all 3 in Beal, Lacey, and Daniels to provide scoring power at the 2 and 3 position. KU has already lost out on Beal and Lacey so hopefully KU can hit that home run that it desperately needs in Daniels.


Fred Davis 2 years, 10 months ago

I'm quick to criticize Self as much as the next guy, but to call out the guy's recruiting ability? Please. Self is hands down one of the best recruiters in college basketball, and this idea that he's supposed to stockpile top-10 talent every year is absurd and unrealistic. Sure, there have been guys turn KU down, but not every kid that has turned KU down has been some dynamo, Snaer for instance, has been solid, but c'mon, if a kid wants to pick Florida State over Kansas, there's nothing Self and Crew can do about that. And to lose kids to Kentucky? Guess what, everybody loses kids to Kentucky. And when you get down to it - Self has gone after high-caliber kids the last few years - Henry and Selby - and how'd those work out? While it would be great to get the Daniels kid, it won't be the end of the world if they don't. Honestly, I think this class Self is bringing in, especially on such short notice, is going to turn out to be one of the best classes in Self's tenure. None of the kids look like one-and-dones, and they all seem very coachable and most importantly, want to be Jayhawks. There's something to be said for that, reminds me of the class that won a title. Finally, Self and staff perhaps have hurt themselves a little bit because for one, choking in the tournament is great fodder for other coaches to tell recruits about, and let's face it, it's not as though any of Self's KU players, save for Chalmers and Arthur to some extent, are exactly lighting it up in the NBA, and the kids Self goes after - they want to go to the NBA. Self and KU are going to be fine, but to say the guy is having problems recruiting is downright foolish.


bennybob 2 years, 10 months ago

Self would make one hell of a politician:

"Fortunately we were able to sign a couple good kids late (forwards Braeden Anderson, Jamari Traylor) that we wouldn’t have recruited early because we wouldn’t have known of their availability.”

what the hell does that mean? if they were available in the spring they were available in the fall.

i guess its a nice way of saying "last resort"


Tony Bandle 2 years, 10 months ago

We all have a's glass is never completely full or completely empty. There is always volume and void.

Today, when it comes to Kansas basketball for 2011-2012 Jaybate has chosen volume, HighEliteMajor has chosen void. Both choices can be justified, both choices are possible, both choices can be questioned.

Weather, war, economic woe has provided enough void in my life, thank you very much. I choose volume and a positive outlook for next year's season. I choose to feel good about something and it will be KU basketball.

Do the hurdles expressed by HEM exist...very possibly. Does the potential greatness expressed by Jaybate exist....very possibly.

I have to be realistic almost every minute of my life...but once in awhile, I am going to dream. I choose Kansas as a National Contender next year.


Jeeveshawk 2 years, 10 months ago

I don't think we need to recruit too badly anymore. It seems that Ty, T-Rob, EJ, Travis, and Withey are all ready to take big steps forward.


HawkKlaw 2 years, 10 months ago

KU basketball is doomed! I mean, seriously, our coach only wins 83.7% of the time. That's pretty lousy. Anyone can do that. Why doesn't he have a 100% winning percentage? Disappointing as all get out. C'mon Self!


nuleafjhawk 2 years, 10 months ago

Coach Self's recruiting ability is not the problem. We've had some great recruits while he's been here. Some of them just haven't always panned out like we wanted them to. I have to agree with some of the other comments that he's a great coach, but I just have to wonder what the heck happens at tournament time. I KNOW we're not going to win it all every year, but there's a problem when we consistently flounder against the teams that we SHOULD beat. You all know the four or five teams I'm talking about. That's my only complaint with Coach Self. I know he's not personally out there missing free throws and committing silly fouls, but when his teams are (I haven't looked it up, don't go crazy....) 1-6 or 1-7 in Elite Eight games, you have to place the blame somewhere and he is the head coach.


Lance Hobson 2 years, 10 months ago

We didn't lose out on Orton, Self chose Robinson over him so he ended up at UK even though KU was his first choice.


phog1004 2 years, 10 months ago

Tell me again why you aren't just a Kentucky fan? I feel like you would be a much more satisfied person in the spring recruiting period, constantly seeing 4 of the top 10 recruits in the nation sign with your new favorite team. Then again, they haven't don't $#!% with those huge recruiting classes, but looks good on paper in April and May to HEM, right?!?!?! YAY!!!


Jack Wilson 2 years, 10 months ago

(cont) 3. Our big men are way, way thin. We have one proven big guy, TRob. A guy who, while a stud, has proven that he can snag two fouls as quick as anyone. Some are now talking about Withey as if he is someone we can count on. We cannot even credibly make that statement until he proves it. Just consider your own observations of his play. There was very little positive. We are banking on a big leap, which is extremely optimistic (and unlikely). Our next two players in the post are freshmen. Lightly regarded freshmen. Even if you are now a "ratings don't matter" guy, just look at the odds that we'll get solid productivity. Remember this season? We had to play Little at the four at times, right? And we had Marcus, Kieff, and TRob. And we saw Withey when there was an injury. Can you even imagine if TRob would get hurt? That is why hitting on the top big guys is so important.

Ever seen the commercial with the beer goggles? Put the beer goggles on and just about anything in a skirt looks good. We have our own version, and they are crimson and blue. That doesn't mean we can't be optimistic. But let's at least be try realistic .... and a bit objective.


Jack Wilson 2 years, 10 months ago

Ah, in just a few posts we have captured the essence of the message boards.

Self explaining his subpar recruiting class (to this point); a spank of Self regarding recruiting misses (pigballin); a "don't criticize Self" defense (theajayhawk/jhox); the "our recruiting is just fine" suggestion (actorman/ashwingrao); and a Jaybate post as to why we'll be fine, together with a humerous interlude. All we're missing is the "rating don't matter" -- of course, only when we get poorly rated players.

A few realities, like it or not: 1. Our recruiting class is a subpar class to this point. We were forced to take the best available with Anderson and Traylor, two guys we didn't even know in February. We wiffed this season on Nash, Chol, Turner, and Lacey. The excuses that we had guys that might or might not turn pro ignores the recruiting accomplishments of other schools in the same spot. Really, an analysis of this requires one to be able to objectively judge coach Self, and not take the "Self is God" or "we can't criticize Self" or "how do you know, you're not a D-1 coach" approach. Because many of you see a comment on recruiting as an attack on Self. It is just reality. He isn't perfect. And even if he does everything right, he still might not get the top guy. Results rule. And this class is a failure. And that is not an attack on Self. If Daniels joins, the pendulum swings. 2. We have a huge, huge deficiency in outside shooting. When we start talking about Teahan being our 3-ball threat, we're in trouble. There is a reason why he sits, and sits. This is scary at this point. Remember when we (many on this board) agreed that the 3 ball was an area of concern prior to last season, and we had Reed, Selby, Morningstar, Marcus? That "concern" is nowhere near what this is .. that was nitpicking as stud squad. This is a 4 alarm fire. We have no proven three point shooter. None. To quote Adrian to Rocky .. "You can't win" (without 3 point shooting). Our question marks are significant. Can TT take an Aaron Miles'-like leap? Can anyone else approach 40%? Couple that with the next point ....


IrishDaddy 2 years, 10 months ago

Self-Denial on recruiting...................


REHawk 2 years, 10 months ago

As for perimeter shooters, let's not forget Teahan. I envision that guy hitting a game winning shot for the Jayhawks sometime in a key contest this season. We are bound to see the fearless side of his competitive nature emerge. Though a step slower than TT or EJ he is one of those players who will have glued his mind and motor neurons to the Bill Self style of play. He and Travis and Taylor will have spent a combined 13 years in the Jayhawk program.


IrishDaddy 2 years, 10 months ago

Good Recruiting ???????

Self-DENAIL !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Robert Brock 2 years, 10 months ago

I think that the Hawks will face a lot of zone next season. Our perimeter shooters will decide what kind of season it will be.


jaybate 2 years, 10 months ago

"Rumor Mill"

~TRob Rumor: Some Lawrence film makers are reportedly penning a rebounding documentary about Thomas Robinson called "Splendor on the Glass." They expect TRob to set a season rebounding record, then depart for the NBA. As with the William Inge play/movie, it will begin with the Wordsworth verse...

"What though the radiance which was once so bright Be now for ever taken from my sight, Though nothing can bring back the hour Of splendour in the grass, of glory in the flower; We will grieve not, rather find Strength in what remains behind; In the primal sympathy Which having been must ever be; In the soothing thoughts that spring Out of human suffering; In the faith that looks through death, In years that bring the philosophic mind." --William Wordsworth

~Manhattan Rumor: After Wally Judge transferred, and Dalonte bolted to give Turg some assistance with Maryland recruiting, the rumor is Frank Martin has admitted he really is Bert from Sesame Street and that he has hired Ernie to recruit some XTReme Puppets.

~Maryland Rumor: Dick Vitale was overheard testing out hype-hooks for Mark Turgeon and Maryland recently. "Turg's Terps" is the top candidate.

~Consonants Rumor: Coach Consonants is reputedly thinking of retiring, because he can't think of any new ways to lower the game further.

~Deandre/Frank Haith Rumor: Deandre has decided to become the first player-coach in D1. The rumor is MU's Frank Haith has agreed to a buy-out in order to make way for Deandre. Finishing his MU career at 0-0, Haith has the highest winning percentage of any MU coach.

~Sheahon Rumor: Zenger has been secretly working out under Andrea Hudy's supervision and has added 35 pounds of muscle, thus making him the strongest AD in America.

~Kentucky Rumor: Due to literacy issues, the playbook has been reduced to international symbols.

(Note: all fiction. No malice.)


Ashwin Rao 2 years, 10 months ago

We are doing quite well, thank you! I would rather have good players who improve all through their 4 years in college, and win us championship rather than OADs. The fun as a fan is by growing with the players and not by having a quick-fix every year!


jaybate 2 years, 10 months ago


Stop gripping.

On the point, Self has TT, a seasoned senior PG that will hand cuff anyone he guards in the country, shoot 40% from trey, and put 12-15 pts on the board every game. TT is ready for a mega senior season.

At 2 guard, Self has EJ, a seasoned junior that is ready to blossum as a starter and has a 40% trey gun. Oh, and he will hold MUA on almost every guy he plays.

At 3, Self has Travis ready to kick ass and shoot 40% from trey, and Ben Mac, one of the countries top perimeter prospects and 45% trey gunner.

At 4, Self has Thomas Robinson, likely to be the best 4 in the country and a guy who can control the boards against anyone. He will hold MUA on almost everyone he plays against and be a first round draft choice after next season.

At 5, Self has a footer in Withey, who is likely to finally get it together as a scorer and shot blocker and finesse defender, while TRob dishes out the lumps.

And Self has Jamari, Braedon and Justin backing up the bigs.

And Self has a sleeper in Nadiir to backup TT and EJ, plus Conner and Christian Garrett in a pinch.

As Self said in the story, he needs one more guy to make this a super group.

He's in the hunt for Deandre.

And there are a couple other prospects that would could fill the bill.

KU is going to be very good next season.

The only question is: are they going to have the depth needed to get into the high 20s/low 30s, or are they going to be a body short and only get 23-26 wins.

The cupboard ain't bare.


actorman 2 years, 10 months ago

I didn't realize you'd posted another comment, pigballin. I was obviously responding to your first one.

As for your second comment, I think it's too early to tell how all the new players will fit in and what their strengths and weaknesses will be. When I say "new" players, I'm also including a lot of the returning players who haven't gotten enough minutes to show us what they can do. We also have no way of knowing how much players like Travis and EJ will improve in the offseason. Areas that you think will be weak may turn out to be just fine with the type of offseason improvements we've seen many times over the years.


actorman 2 years, 10 months ago

Pigballin, that is absolutely ridiculous!!! There has been nothing REMOTELY resembling a pattern of recruiting failures on Self's part. A pattern is not determined by a few examples; have you ever heard of the phrase "anecdotal evidence?" We're not talking about numbers on a sheet of paper here, we're talking about individuals, and individuals have a million different reasons for making the decisions they make. In fact Self's recruting record is just fine: just look at the number of McDonald's All-Americans he's gotten over the years. And even if he does happen to go through a stretch where he doesn't get as many highly ranked recruits as in the past, that still wouldn't necessarily mean it had anything to do with what he's saying to them. A person doesn't all of a sudden forget what to say to people when he's been successful for years.


pigballin 2 years, 10 months ago

Self will have a team that will do well in league,,but will flounder in the NCAA tourney. I just don't see where the scoring punch is going to come from. It will have to be defense and who can run the fastest on a fast break to get points. At this point i don't see any go to outside shooters and what post player or forward is good at shooting other than a dunk?


pigballin 2 years, 10 months ago

Bill Self has to re-evaluate Bill Self why he can't close the deal on recruits. What is he saying that is different than the other schools. He has lost out on highly rated midwest recruits to schools out east and now the Ellis kid is looking around and making comments about how he likes Duke. So If Self loses out on him..Then something is wrong what Self is telling these players that doesn't appeal with them.


leighjphelps 2 years, 10 months ago

Common guys the universities are not for everyone these days, it is very costly just accept, only alternative now is something called "High Speed University" where you pay much much less but get degree faster


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