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Originally published August 20, 2012 at 05:08p.m., updated August 21, 2012 at 02:16a.m.

Milton Doyle spoke with Self on phone before deciding to transfer

Several schools have 'major interest' in Chicago guard, mom says

Kansas newcomer Milton Doyle works out with the Jayhawks for the first time on Monday, June 18, 2012, at  Horejsi Center during Bill Self's basketball camp.

Kansas newcomer Milton Doyle works out with the Jayhawks for the first time on Monday, June 18, 2012, at Horejsi Center during Bill Self's basketball camp.

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Milt Doyle, who returned to his hometown of Chicago on Aug. 13 for a weeklong visit with his family following Kansas University’s basketball excursion to Switzerland and Paris, planned to catch a flight to Kansas City International on Sunday for the start of first semester classes Monday at KU.

He had a change of heart after a serious phone conversation with Jayhawk coach Bill Self.

“We spoke to Milt at length Sunday on what we thought his role would be within our program,” 10th-year KU coach Self said Monday in officially announcing the 6-foot-4 freshman guard’s decision to transfer to a yet-to-be-determined school.

“We discussed his options, and the first option was welcoming him back for the fall. His leaving is entirely his own choice, one that he felt was best for his future. We expected him to be here, but he thought it was better for him to go to a place where he had a better opportunity to impact a program early in his career,” Self added. “We wish nothing but the best for him. He is a great kid.”

Doyle, who averaged 19.0 points, 7.0 rebounds, 5.0 assists and 5.0 steals per game his senior season at Chicago’s Marshall High, has not announced a possible list of schools. He will have to sit out this season in accordance with NCAA transfer rules. It is possible he would have red-shirted the season had he stayed at KU, but no final decision on that matter had been made, Self indicated.

“We are hopeful he can get in (another) school soon. Surprisingly, there are still a lot of schools with scholarships, and they have major interest in Milton,” Doyle’s mom, Lisa Green, told the Chicago Tribune on Monday.

“He is OK with that,” she added of practicing but not playing in games this season. “He wants to be able to develop as a player, learn that team’s program, have room to grow and get his degree.”

Green on Monday told the Journal-World there were no hard feelings that things didn’t work out at KU.

“Milton likes everyone on the KU team and got along with everyone,” Green said via text message. “My son was his (Self’s) son’s roommate. Coach Self is still cool in my book.”

On Sunday, she told the J-W in a phone conversation: “It’s nothing bad about the school or the coaches or anything. Sometimes things happen for a reason.”

Doyle’s departure leaves KU with 12 scholarship players, one under the limit.

“I haven’t made a decision on anything yet,” Self said, asked if the scholarship would be awarded to Justin Wesley, who was on scholarship last year.

KU currently has five available scholarships to award to players in the high school recruiting Class of 2013. So far, the Jayhawks have landed commitments from Conner Frankamp, a 6-1 senior from Wichita North, and Brannen Greene, 6-4, senior Tift County High, Forsyth, Ga.

McLemore update: Self said KU freshman Ben McLemore (hip flexor) would return to action soon. “Hopefully he’ll start working out by the first of next week,” Self said.

Recruiting: Anthony “Cat” Barber, a 6-2 senior point guard from Hampton (Va.) High, likely will visit KU the weekend of Sept. 14-16, according to Rivals.com. Barber, the country’s No. 9-rated player, is also considering Alabama, Louisville and North Carolina State. Rivals.com reports that two other players — Troy Williams and Tyler Roberson — also may visit that weekend. Williams, ranked 41st, is a 6-6 small forward from Oak Hill Academy in Mouth of Wilson, Va. Roberson, who is ranked No. 53, is a 6-8 small forward from Roselle (N.J.) Catholic High.

Comments

Ralster Jayhawk 1 year, 7 months ago

And the other speculation, assuming Milt already had a return flight ticket, is that Self initiated this whole "of course you are welcome back, but here is the real deal on mpg/redshirt, etc...", and of course, Milt & family took the bait, and he bailed. I didnt say "got the hint", as they likely wouldnt still be singing his praises still. And why would Self do this? Because he may almost have another bird almost-in-hand, and needs to show a scholly and also "less" competition waiting on the bench, in order to entice him of the opportunity now-clearly-available at KU...(just speculatin').

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Ralster Jayhawk 1 year, 7 months ago

Peculiar thing is they say Milt may have to redshirt under transfer rules--> well, he could have chosen to redshirt right here at KU. The whole play-right-away rationale doesnt hold water if he has to redshirt. Unless he goes Div2...

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brad53 1 year, 8 months ago

Guys like Milton need KU more than KU needs them. Patience is a virtue, could have had some exciting times. Oh well his lost.

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Lance Hobson 1 year, 8 months ago

I find this a very sad story. Milt was a diamond in the rough and we were so excited to have him at KU for a long time. I saw him as that fifth-year senior who hits the key shots and guides an inexperienced but talented bunch to the title someday. His mother was so excited when he signed, and so was Isiah Thomas. I thought this was going to be a special journey with him that would find a nice place in KU history. He looked good in the video we saw of the team practicing, I wish he and Self worked harder to make this work.

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ironhead80 1 year, 8 months ago

MD was not KU BBALL material, He is no longer here!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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jgkojak 1 year, 8 months ago

I think he was headed for a red-shirt here, and even then it appeared he would not see any significant game time for 3 years.

If he was gonna sit a year by transferring anyway, he can go to some program where he'd play significant minutes immediately.

Really a no-brainer - especially given his past performance - if he can be a 2-3 year starter somewhere, he has a chance to go to Europe to make some $$$ professionally.

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Tony Bandle 1 year, 8 months ago

All those in favor of rememberring Morningstar as a star say," Aye."

All those in favor of remembering Morningstar as a pain in the rear say "Aye".

That settles it,......the ayes have it!!

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nate cleveland 1 year, 8 months ago

The kid doesnt want to wait 3 years to get on the court. I dont blame him one bit. If I was Doyle I would be looking at Tulsa.

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jaybate 1 year, 8 months ago

Milton and Milton's mom understood this. But they also understood that Milton wanted to play ball. There were still schools out there with scholies. KU and Self got him through the clearing house process. That increased his market value as a guy who could transfer and sit yet be sure to be eligible. Self wanting Milt increased Milton's attractiveness to other coaches at other schools. Getting a KU transfer means one is getting at least "good depth," and maybe a starter. And a KU transfer does not seem like a tramp athlete. KU and Bill Self being the last thing on your resume looks better than Zeke and FIU.

Milton took a chance on KU, enhanced himself and transferred.

Self took a chance on Milton, and helped him out. Self got some "good depth," then lost it. But Self did this for an old friend, a high school coach in Chicago, a guy who will always have another good prospect every year or so to introduce to Self.

Really, if Milt signs with a program trying to do it the right way, everyone won.

And in a worst case scenario, where injuries make us wish we had Milton, well, Evan Manning showed about as much as Milton did, and there are worse things than having to rely on a Manning.

Rock Chalk!

(Note: All of the above is hypothetical speculation after watching and reading from afar. I have no insider information.)

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jaybate 1 year, 8 months ago

"jaybate's Hypothetical Digest of the Milton Doyle Episode"

Self saw some potential in Milton, and Self wanted to do right by the old Chicago high school coach that asked Self to take Milton on, after Zeke got the hook at FIU and Milton was adrift.

Self made Milton and Self's own son roomates; that indicates a significant committment on Self's part to steer Milton straight and for the long term.

Milton played sparingly in exhibition games.

Milton visited home before coming back to start the fall semester.

Milton learned from his mom that she was getting a lot of calls from schools with a lot more PT to offer next season, after a year of sitting, than Milton might get after sitting this season at KU.

Milton and his mom decided Bill Self had been a straight shooter with them. They decided to have Milton call Coach Self and ask Self to forecast Milton's role the next two seasons.

Self said he would likely play sparingly, but that he thought he would contribute his junior or senior years. He also thought it would be best if he red shirted to ensure that he would graduate.

Milton said he thought it would be best for him to play sooner rather than later. He said some schools still had some scholarships and wanted to sign him.

Self said okay, but maybe he should take a day or two to think it over.

Milton decided and came down to Lawrence to pack his things.

Mom somehow got connected with the Chicago hoops blogger and gave the word Milton was leaving KU to consider other schools.

The story broke before Self expected it to.

When Self was asked to comment, he declined, because he had said he would give Milton a couple days to be certain.

There was probably another conversation. The answer was yes, he had packed and left.

Self waited the agreed upon time.

Self released the above announcement emphasizing it was all Doyle's decision.

Self probably did want Doyle to come back, but on the other hand, Self probably knew it was possible that he might land enough new talent that it might happen that Doyle would become expendable after this season. It was a possibility, not a probability. Injuries happen. Guys you think will sign don't necessarily sign. Guys you think will stay jump early. Guys you think are coachable sometimes are not. And so on. Milton was "good depth", with, or without Anrio Adams. He put him with his own son to begin the process not just of developing him as a player, but of giving him a college education, of opening him up to the world.

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Jack Wilson 1 year, 8 months ago

May we all agree that this thread is Milton Doyle closure?

I probably posted more words about the Milton Doylegasms in early June than any other topic, save Mr. Morningstar. I feel the need to move on. There is need for closure.

I think one of my main take aways from reading everyone's posts in early June when this all went down was simply how most folks here really want to support their team and their coach, and anything that is a bit of a downer at the time is not met with much enthusiasm. I get that, and admire folks that are that fiercely loyal. Seeing things through crimson and blue colored glasses is a nice way to live life, albeit sometimes not the most objective way.

On the flip side, that enthusiasm turns to disdain when the same kid leaves. He's an 18 year old that just got some bad advice -- but he got that advice for all the right reasons. It was the strong allure of the Kansas Jayhawks. The best basketball program at any level in the world. It is hard to turn down. But as most of us know here, the bad advice he received was to come here in the first place. Then again, I bet we've all given bad advice before. It happens.

One poster had noted that at least he leaves now, and we don't waste further resources and efforts on the young man, particularly if he would end up leaving at the end of the season. Brilliant. The business side says that the timing is good for KU.

Milt is a player. He's not a scrub. He wants to play and probably deserves some P.T. at the D-1 level his freshman season. Just not here. It is really this .. does a kid like Milt want to come in, pay his dues, learn, possibly sit/redshirt for the better part of three seasons, to possibly earn P.T. his junior and senior seasons? That's a hard pill to swallow for some.

And top guys are coming in all the time. As much as we think many of these recruits see the entire picture, or comprehend the entire picture, they don't. And remember .. Milt is a player. He is likely arrogant about his game. Likely the exact kind of dude you want on your team. He probably felt that he could earn his P.T. now ... because he'd always done it. Then reality hit.

He then made the best choice for him at a time that causes the least amount of disruption for all. It might have been a choice made for him at the end of this season, anyway. If the guy finds a soft landing spot, and we don't end up needing the Doyle insurance policy that Self purchased in early June, then all's well that ends well for all involved.

Closure.

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HawkKlaw 1 year, 8 months ago

Geez. I hope potential future Jayhawks don't read these boards. How embarrassing and pitiful it is to see all of these knee-jerk reactions to a kid who changed his mind on where to play ball. How many of us transferred at some point in our college career? I know I did. Twice. College is not exactly the easiest point in any humans life. Milt is a young guy that wants to be on the court as opposed to on the bench. No hard feelings. Follow your dreams, young man!

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up4par2000 1 year, 8 months ago

He(Doyle) will end up at SDSU or New Mexico St. or go to Wazzu!!!

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phogphan2000 1 year, 8 months ago

All I know is Milton Doyle dreamed of playing at the University of Kansas and for a couple weeks he was able to. For whatever reason, probably playing time more than anything, he decided it would be better to take his talents to another program. Best of luck to him.

Anyone else wonder what Self is thinking on the extra scholarship? I guess it must still be possible to pick up a player from the class of 2012, but I don't know that it would seem wise with the solid depth KU is already showing for this year and the potential out there for an excellent recruit next year. I imagine he wants to surprise Wesley with the schollie at some point or would he consider offering it to a different walk-on that might need it more?

It seems like KU is looking at anywhere from an 8-11 man rotation this year. Wonder if Self is thinking about running a little more press defensively with the additional depth this year and what should be a much more balanced team. If BMac has the defensive skills HCBS has touted to go with EJ, throw TRel's quick feet and hands, KYo and Traylor's energy, the length of Withey, freshman exuberance in White, Ellis and Peters, could put a lot of pressure on the other team. You know these guys can finish transition baskets off.

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Ron Prichard 1 year, 8 months ago

I'm totally blown away by all the negativity on here. We are all Jayhawk fans to varying degrees. Anytime an athlete leaves Kansas, some people immediately turn into these angry, tunnel-vision like judges decrying the kid's decision and motives. It wasn't the right fit, and it happens. There is absolutely a 0% chance Doyle decided to come to Kansas with a plan of leaving at the end of the summer. There is also no chance Self offered him a scholarship knowing or anticipating he would decide to leave so quickly. When the scholarship was offered and accepted, both sides thought it would be beneficial and Doyle would contribute at KU. After--yes, AFTER--Doyle arrived at Kansas and played with the rest of the team, it became apparent he just wasn't ready to contribute and that he might not even be able to contribute after sitting out a year or after learning from HCBS given the recruits we have coming in. Then, and only then, did Doyle and Self talk and decide that KU wasn't the place for him. The kid is 18 years old. We need to cut him a little slack. I would bet half of the negative posters on here were either still living at home or extremely homesick their first year in college, and none of us were wrestling with our dream of playing basketball in college.

On another note, for all of those people upset that Doyle got to take a free trip to Europe before leaving the program, consider that in almost every other year when KU doesn't get to travel overseas and have the 10 early practices, Doyle wouldn't have had this conversation with Self and found out his status until well into the fall semester. The way I see it, the trip to Europe was a fortuitous event for both KU and Doyle.

Good luck to you Mr. Doyle. I hope you find success and what makes you happy. Although I may never consider you a full-fledged Jayhawk, I am also greatful and proud you thought enough of KU to make it your first choice.

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flyingfinn 1 year, 8 months ago

Another indication how great a leader coach Self is. Many people in leadership positions find it hard to give people an honest eveluation of their abilities and tend to sugar coat things but a true leader acts as Coach Self did in this instance with words that in the long run will benefit the individual. Good luck Milt, but believe you would have been better off staying under a great leader's tutelage.

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nuleafjhawk 1 year, 8 months ago

I believe Uncle Milty would still be with us if Sadler had not joined the staff.

MD wanted to be called " Doc ". Doc was already taken.

Nobody here could come up with a cool enough nickname to keep him in Lawrence.

Blame it on Sadler first, the fans second.

Yes, I'm joking.

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COJHawk 1 year, 8 months ago

on a different note...

maybe i'm late to the party on this one, but anyone else see the ESPN 30 for 30 promo for what's coming in october?...

should be sweet. RCJHGKU!

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Ron Franklin 1 year, 8 months ago

“He wants to be able to develop as a player, learn that team’s program, have room to grow and get his degree.”

Kansas was the perfect place to do that, Mrs. Green.

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RockChalk26 1 year, 8 months ago

Doyle the first OAD since Selby. (One Eurotrip and done)

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rob4lb 1 year, 8 months ago

Some of the arrogant and mean spirited comments are over the top but not surprising. This is truly a kid whose world has been spinning off its axis the last few months. If the situation is not right, it is best to change it now rather than later.

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midwest_muser 1 year, 8 months ago

Lets compare this to all the acrimony in Wisconsin this summer and just be thankful that Bill Self is our coach. A potentially unpleasant situation handled with grace and class to the mutual benefit of all. That's Kansas.

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bennybob 1 year, 8 months ago

"We expected him to be here, but he thought it was better for him to go to a place where he had a better opportunity to impact a program early in his career"

Directly from coach Self.

what I've been saying all along! A program like Kansas never should have been in the position to need to offer a scholarship to a kid like Doyle. It never works out for either party. Just ask Merv Lindsay.

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Jeff Suther 1 year, 8 months ago

I told you guys he would transfer.

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akgjenkintown 1 year, 8 months ago

There should be no hatred or ill will toward Milton. He is a good player and will become even better no matter where he eventually winds up. He came to KU and Lawrence, interacted with the players and coaches, found out where he was on the playing totem pole and decided it was best to leave now. Wish him well and show that KU fans are classy and not petty.

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Charles Shirley 1 year, 8 months ago

No one got played. It is ludicrous to assume that Milton changed schools from FIU to KU just so he could take one semester of summer school and get a free trip to Europe. That's crazy talk. Either Self was honest with him after Self evaluated his team's abilities and Milton's abilities or Milton figured out on his own that he wasn't going to get a whole lot of playing time--probably a bit of both. It is better that he make the decision now to transfer to a less competitive school and get more PT earlier in his career, as Self put it, than to stick around and sit on the bench, work hard, and find out two years from now that he might not earn all that much playing time next year or the year after that. The PT issue isn't just going to go away after one year. New recruits of Connor Frankamp's quality are going to be landing at KU for the next four years, so just waiting on the bench for one year was not necessarily going solve the PT issue. If he wants PT that early and that's his personal expectation then it is best for him to move on and let KU move on. Its better for him and its better for KU.

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REHawk 1 year, 8 months ago

Anyone who takes a close look at that picture of Milt, while studying his Chicago school stats, must realize that the lad has game. His conversation with Bill Self indicates to me that he was destined to be a seldom used role player on a team loaded with competitive talent these next few seasons. Milt and family gambled on a very big Div. 1 commitment which just didn't quite work out. Now he is forced to lower expectations or sign with another Div. 1 program where he will be forced to sit out a season, but might be a more essential piece of future impact. I wish him the very best...and commend his early summer desire to become a part of the very best program in the land. I hope to see him star in whichever program he eventually represents. And I hope this means that Ben, Andrew, Naadir, Rio, Evan or next year's incoming high school superstars are destined to be exceptional Jayhawks, all set and ready to bolster a backcourt determined to win more league titles.

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jimjones 1 year, 8 months ago

Milton said the humiliation of losing to France was just too much to bear and he wouldn't be able to shake it off if he stayed here.

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mae 1 year, 8 months ago

Good riddance indeed. KU just got played by giving away probably straight 4.0 summer scholarship and a long European vacation. ...wtheck did you do this summer?

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Michael Luby 1 year, 8 months ago

There is always going to be a certain rate of attrition at all of the major Div 1 programs, KU not excluded. Prime example, after the 06-07 season, Julian Wright bounced early for the NBA which opened up more PT for Sasha Kaun and Darnell Jackson. They ended up winning a national title. Im not saying these guys will win it all this year bcuz Doyle bailed. But sometimes these things happen and it just makes the team better, more cohesive.

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Doug Cramer 1 year, 8 months ago

I still wonder if Coach recommended that he red shirt. He could of been a solid player if he did red shirt...and gained all that experience getting better.

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kureader 1 year, 8 months ago

Milton saw the writing on the wall ... you can't blame him for leaving. Why not go somewhere where he'll get to see the floor? And, Self definitely didn't shed any tears ... he may say it was all up to Milton, but I think it was mutual.
Recruiting has to be a frustrating thing ... these kids and their parents change their minds twice a day ... you recruit 5 kids to get 1 kid. Milton was signed before Self knew exactly who else who be on his roster.
You can't blame anyone here ... this is how the system works. Good luck to Milton. Self gets to reuse a scholarship, now that he knows more about his 2013 signees and what his needs really are.

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Ferd Magellan 1 year, 8 months ago

He's a shy kid, so it's understandable why he would feel overwhelmed at a place like KU. I wish him the best of luck at a lower-profile school where he can play more and not being under a magnifying glass all the time.

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Katy Shaflestad 1 year, 8 months ago

Sorry Idjayhawk...Milton is not a Jayhawk. He wasn't even here for 1 day of the fall semester. He chose to leave for more playing time elsewhere. He will never be considered a Jayhawk. Josh Selby on the other hand IS a Jayhawk and always will be.

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Janet Scott 1 year, 8 months ago

Not the first time; and won't be the last at KU. He wants to play; he won't play at KU. The honesty and transparency exhibited by HCBS is admired.

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mikehawk 1 year, 8 months ago

Maybe he was being encourged to red shirt. He won't be the only frosh to find out the school of his/her choice/dreams was not what they wanted or needed. Many a first year student at a large university will pack it up and head home to regroup very early in their semester. Let's be glad Milton made the decision now and not later for his sake, and KU basketball. Let's not turn ugly on young kids and their families. Good luck young man.

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ldjayhawk 1 year, 8 months ago

I understand. For a young man who is confident about his abilities, he just made the choice that he thought would be best for him, not sure for his development though. There is always a fine line between playing starters in a relatively less-exposed program and being patient and playing potentially 2-3 years at a power house. Which one suits Milton better? I am sure that he and Self have different opinions. That's what happened. Shame but who knows, maybe things work out for him? Maybe not. Life is about choices. I wish you luck, Milton. One thing for sure is that you will not get a better supporting fan base wherever you go. But we will remember you as a Jayhawk anyway.

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Ray March 1 year, 8 months ago

stupid kid... everyone wants to be the star "right now" as a freshman.

how about you follow Self's direction and let him develop you into a real player???

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John Randall 1 year, 8 months ago

I wonder what his situation is regarding transfer. Has he actually enrolled? attended classes? Would a transfer to a D1 school require sitting a year? I also wonder if their conference was initiated by Doyle, by Self, or a regular thing for all players.

As far as we know, there are no academic or character issues beyond being too impatient for playing time. KU is not a program where it is easy to just walk in and be an immediate contributor. At his age, a year or two to earn his spurs may seem like forever. I doubt that jumping ship a second time this year will enhance his recruit profile much. Bill Self has been consistent about helping anyone who transfers out to find a good place to go, but this may not be an easy one on that score.

Best wishes, Milton, on your future endeavors.

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doolindalton 1 year, 8 months ago

He will have to set out this season anyway. So he isn't going to have an "early impact" anywhere.

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Eric Dawson 1 year, 8 months ago

I think folks are being just a bit hard on Doyle. It's a very chilling and disheartening experience at any age to be thrown in the deep end and realize that, in the minds of the people running the show (and maybe even your own), you are not as good as you thought you were. Give him credit for leaving now for some place he can be happy and playing (either Div II, more likely JUCO, at this point, since he wants to play right away). It would be a shame if he had chosen to stay @KANSAS, then hated it so much that he soured the team vibe with his unhappiness.

And it's not like Self wasted a scholarship on Doyle. Self had one left since he missed out on some of the late transfers he was trying for, so he got some guard insurance in case Rio didn't make the grade. Expect the scholly to go to one of the walk-ons for this year (Justin again?), probably sooner rather than later.

In the meantime, good luck, Milt, wherever you end up.

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Dyrk Dugan 1 year, 8 months ago

translation: "you're not good enough to be in the regular rotation right now....and who knows if you will. and if you can't handle it, thanks for using our facilities for free for a summer, and good riddance."

that's not what Bill Self said...or even thought. but that's definitely my thoughts. i'm sorry, but this kid sounds like someone who thought he was something special, and he got here and found it he wasn't. and he's unwilling to devleop and get better, and actually get special.

we have plenty of kids who are chomping at the bit, to get on the court. we'll be just fine. Mr. Doyle, good luck.

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JayDocMD 1 year, 8 months ago

We need to give young Doyle his due for taking over the "Jayhawkardashian Award" - the all-time Jayhawk who has received press disproportionate to his accomplishments. (Exact formula is number of LJW articles divided by length of time on campus.)

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Pitthawk34 1 year, 8 months ago

These things are all a part of a healthy program. What it means is that we have some good young ballers here and on the way.

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Kyle Sybesma 1 year, 8 months ago

This sounds like HCBS having an honest conversation with a young man about what this upcoming season looks like for Doyle after an accurate evaluation of his talent in Europe. It's got to be a tough conversation to have but I think it's best to let a kid know that this may not be the place for you if you want playing time. Good Luck to you Mr. Doyle. You may want to check out Tulsa down the road.

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fearthephog512 1 year, 8 months ago

Fair enough, Milt. Can't help but shake my head, though — he could have been patient and been a part of something great! Best of luck ...

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