Wednesday, December 5, 2012

KU freshman Perry Ellis: College transition tough but rewarding

Kansas forward Perry Ellis looks to pass around Michigan State center Adreian Payne during the first half, Tuesday, Nov. 13, 2012 at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta.

Kansas forward Perry Ellis looks to pass around Michigan State center Adreian Payne during the first half, Tuesday, Nov. 13, 2012 at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta.


Perry Ellis won’t argue with anybody who says the first semester of one’s college career just might be the most difficult of all.

“I mean, it’s pretty tough. You really have to focus,” Ellis, Kansas University’s 6-foot-8 freshman basketball forward from Wichita, said as Friday’s Stop Day approaches, signaling the end of fall semester of the 2012-13 school year. “There’s so much you have to do compared to high school. So many other things are thrown at you whether academics, basketball,” added Ellis, Class of 2012 valedictorian at Wichita Heights High School, who said he’s been tested, but not overwhelmed at KU.

“I’m just a freshman trying to get better,” he said. “I just do what they tell me and try to get better as a player and a person.”

The 225-pound McDonald’s All-American and four-time high school state champion has averaged 6.4 points and 4.0 rebounds in 16.0 minutes a game over seven games. He’s hit 47.1 percent of his shots and 76.5 percent of his free throws heading into Saturday’s 1 p.m., home game against Colorado.

“Defense is the main thing. You’ve got to get out on defense and everything else comes from that,” Ellis said of lessons learned on the court thus far.

Ellis — he has started two of seven games — has competed for minutes at the power forward spot with senior Kevin Young (4.7 points, 6.2 rebounds, 18.3 minutes per game, four starts) and red-shirt freshman Jamari Traylor (2.7 points, 2.6 rebounds, 13.3 minutes per game, one start).

“I think it is going to make us all better players,” Ellis said of the competition. “We are all competing at practice. I think it’ll work out.”

KU coach Bill Self said Ellis “has improved so much,” since arriving on campus for summer school in June.

“This is a compliment to Perry, so nobody take this the wrong way ... he is a teaser,” Self said, asked about Ellis on Monday’s weekly “Hawk Talk” radio show. “He shows you how fast he can run. He shows you how high he can jump. He shows you how he can score, so you want that more often. You want more.”

Self said that as a conscientious freshman, Ellis is “trying to fit in. He is not one of those kids that can just say, ‘Hey forget it. I’m just going to go play.’ He’s one of those, ‘I want to play, but don’t you want me to be over here or do you want this foot up or back?’ He analyzes everything too much and then he gets slow and not aggressive. He’ll come out of it when he quits thinking. Usually you want guys that can think. I want guys that don’t think, that just go play.

“After they learn what to do, why do they need to think? It becomes reactionary,” Self added. “He is not at that level yet. Everybody is important to our team without question, but he is really important because he is a guy who can score. We’ve got to get him where he is more aggressive. He has shown flashes of that.”

Ellis had 15 points in KU’s season-opener against SE Missouri State and 12 against Washington State. He’s totaled four points in each of the last three games, against Oregon State, San Jose State and Saint Louis.

“He needs to have some success in the game,” Self said. “He needs to see the ball go in the hole. I’ve seen in practice he catches it and shoots it. In the game, he catches it, hesitates and tries to back a guy down rather than make an aggressive move. It’s something he’ll get better at. He’s more than capable.

“We also have to understand, hey, Julian (Wright) wasn’t good enough to start until after Christmas, neither was Mario Chalmers. Those guys turned out to be pretty good players. It’s a different deal, different speed, different competitive level. He’ll get there. He just needs some time and a lot of reps.”

Ellis said his teammates have made the transition to college less difficult.

“Just listening to these guys every day ... the seniors really help me out a lot, motivating me day in and out,” Ellis said. “Jeff (Withey), Elijah (Johnson), Travis ... I look and see what they do in practice and kind of follow what they do. And Kevin ... the energy he brings is something I can take from his game and get better, the energy he brings on the court,” Ellis added.


kusayzone 8 years, 9 months ago

Oh Perry, such pressure of being the best at all times, both academically and on the basketball court. My only advice would be simple. I hope you find some time in your KU experience just have some fun, because there is a whole bunch of guys on the team that you will be bonded with for the rest of your life. The time goes so fast......

NebraskaJayhawk 8 years, 9 months ago

You sound like his grandmother.

Buck up Perry! Be aggressive and start playing physical!

kusayzone 8 years, 9 months ago

And you sound like someone who believes athletes fall into the following categories. Use them, abuse them, and if no good, then lose them.

Get a life, and dont live your life through someone else who doesnt live up to your expectations.

Curtis Stutz 8 years, 9 months ago

I want to see Perry Ellis get a double double off dunks and defensive boards. It's nice to hear HCBS say he's been teased by how high he can jump, 'cause he really hasn't shown that in a game. You know the shooting touch is there, you know the footwork is there, let's see you get up Perry! If Self is challenging EJ to drive it like TT, I think he needs to challenge Mr. Ellis to dunk it like TRob. Take a game, try to dunk every time you catch it in the post, every time you snag an offensive board in the paint, just go for it. We can handle a few offensive fouls, but get after it. We can't have you releasing before the defensive board is secure either, that's the PF's job on this team. Most defensive stops end in a rebound, and HCBS loves defensive stops.

bhol 8 years, 9 months ago

I don't think his game is one that features a lot of dunking, nor will it ever; he's got a below the rim gam. Watch his recruiting videos and he rarely dunks. Hopefully it emerges, but I wouldn't make the mistake that he's a guy you can throw lobs to for easy points.

Curtis Stutz 8 years, 9 months ago

That's the problem, there's no such thing as a good "below the rim" game in cbb. Look at Marcus when he was a freshman, same problem, then he started jumping. That's why he needs to be challenged to get up above the rim. You could see in the MSU game he got swatted a time or two and got shy. He's not playing against undersized players now, it's great that he has that shooting touch, but he needs to play bigger.

Michael Bennett 8 years, 9 months ago

He will get better at banging. Break through the USC Trojan defense.

ParisHawk 8 years, 9 months ago

"Hey, high school valedictorian, stop thinking!"

Easier said than done.

Ellis is probably out there thinking about how he's thinking too much. Intelligent people can tie themselves into knots.

Tony Bandle 8 years, 9 months ago that's why my shoelaces are always untied!! :)

KULA 8 years, 9 months ago

Hope Perry progresses fast enough to have his breakout game against Ohio State. That would be Sweet!

Ben Berglund 8 years, 9 months ago

That would be nice, but KY is our official Ohio State killer. Review the tapes from either game last year and KY was integral in both. I guess that's not necessarily mutually exclusive from Perry breaking out, but we'll see. I love this team.

jaybate 8 years, 9 months ago

The Designer is easy to put in perspective.

He is struggling through a Self rebuild and 2 guys that know the ropes, and still playing 15 mpg and getting the best numbers of the three.

A Self rebuild assumes you can get way better by not only being what you already are, but also by becoming your opposite.

Scorers become defenders.

Defenders become scorers.

Thinkers are made into non thinkers.

Non thinkers become thinkers.

Vertical guys become horizontal guys.

Horizontal guys learn vertical.

Weak become strong.

Heavy get lean.

Fast learn slow and slow learn fast.

Shooters learn glue.

Gluers learn impact.

Happy go luckies get serious.

The serious lighten up.

Minds become bodies and bodies become minds.

The goal is not to give up what you were, but to become the part of you you are not yet being-- and then to become more than either.

This is the essence of Tumbleweed Basketball Buddhism. Of Oklahoma Hardscrabble Cager Christianity. Of Ark River Jamming Judaism. Of Red Clay Hoops Islam.

Opposites attract.

The opposite sides of ourselves attract.

And when the opposites finally get close enough, an arc of pure energy releases.

This is the deep spirit and physics of Self Ball.

Fusing constructive opposites to release an order of magnitude increase in individual and team energy.

Westerners often go to Tibet to seek an ashram high in the Himalayas and a wise man to help them achieve enlightenment--to help them to arc east and west--to release the pure energy that is enlightenment.

Allen Field House and the university in Kansas form a kind of remote prairie ashram and Katmandu on an ocean of grass--the Great Plains--North America's horizontal equivalent of Asia's vertical Himalayas--a place where one can hear one's self think and explore possibilities for enlightenment amidst the quest for lucre. Life is both.

Perhaps one day those furiously hard working young people of China now undergoing the crucible of industry and information will take a break and journey to Kansas and Lawrence to walk the razor's edge and make the arc.

Mel Clare 8 years, 9 months ago

Jaybate..................the philosopher! Perry will be fine. Get a little more beef on him from Hudy and he will be VERY good next year..........freshman learning curve....all go through it!

Love Kensucky's record right ow!

KansasComet 8 years, 9 months ago


I don't see it as him struggling. I see it as it takes time to turn grapes into vintage wine! The end result will be a thing of beauty! Go Perry Ellis!

jaybate 8 years, 9 months ago

As you wish Comet. I will put it this way. I am absolutely certain (and have never had a shred of doubt) that Perry would become an exceptional D1 basketball player...once he breaks through the limits and habits his great success as a high schooler rewarded and conditioned him toward.

To win so many consecutive championships and to be so successful individually so young both evidences great ability and committment, but also creates the walls of experience that imprison. Ask 9 child stars out of 10 in Hollywood. Ask half the young Olympic gymnasts that shine at 12-14 and then must adapt to adulthood. No one is immune to this problem. Ask the great running back who ran circles around everyone from high school, to college, to professional football only to find in adulthood the need to transform himself by walking through his own private looking glass and past the walls of his own success to become an effective professional in other walks of life.

Given the prison of my own personal experience, I am illuminated by another example.

If you are right handed and so left brained, liken what The Designer is going through to being asked to suddenly learn to dribble left handed all the time, so that once he has mastered the left hand, there is a synergy that results not only in being able to go both ways, but in his opponent no longer knowing which way he will have to go.

I had to spend the better part of a year learning to dribble with my "other" hand. It is a mighty struggle accessing any part of one's mind that one has never used before. It involves burning in new neural net patterns with reps and building up muscle control and tendon/ligament elasticity through reps. It involves overcoming the habits of old neural net patterns. It involves belief that what one imagines can in fact become reality. It is quite different than getting better at what one has always been good at.

Self is asking (insisting) Perry not just keep getting better at what he has always been good at. He is in addition asking (insisting) he become good at a way of playing that he has never tried, nor had to.

To me it involves great struggle.

But I like wine and have made some and though wine making is a very passive act, I can go along with your metaphor, while also embracing mine.

Rock Chalk!!

TulsaJayhawk 8 years, 9 months ago

Just curious, but did you play for KU? Are you from California?

KansasComet 8 years, 9 months ago

Perry Ellis is smart enough to figure out things. Unfortunately the quick hook makes it appear that he is struggling worse than he actually is. Give him 25 minutes a game and watch the magic happen.

jaybate 8 years, 9 months ago


I'm in. But Coach Self, Kevin and Jamari have a little input on this, too. :-)

jaybate 8 years, 9 months ago

Hi Tulsahawk,

KU grad. Not remotely D1 material. Just love the game.

Now, since you are from Tulsa, I have to ask you a question about an LA Times story I saw online recently. It reported that there is a Tulsa University undergraduate program in cyber spying with a degree path and major that has been operating since the mid naught decade and that 93% of its graduates get jobs with NSA and CIA. Have you heard anything about this program teaching undergrads how to cyber spy? This seems like the future.

It seems like KU needs to get one of these programs, too. May we could have an even more specialized program than Tulsa's. May KU's program could train cyber spies that spy on cyber spies. Maybe DHS could hire them. :-)

Michael Bratisax 8 years, 9 months ago

DHS would employ them as baggage screeners.

bradynsdad 8 years, 9 months ago

Can someone explain "reclassifying" to me please? I only went to high school for 4 years. Does it mean that they are planning on attending a year of prep school and decided not too? Seems like every top prospect in the country is doing this.

ParisHawk 8 years, 9 months ago

The NCAA changed the rules on academic eligibility, I think in 2010.

"Division I From the time you enter the ninth grade, you have four (4) years or eight (8) semesters to complete your core-course requirement. If you fail to complete high school "on time" in eight semesters, core courses taken after the eighth semester will not be counted toward your NCAA academic-eligibility requirements."

This is from a presentation found on the NCAA web site.

Maybe some players who were going to take five (5) years are now deciding they might as well just do four (4), since the hard part has to get done in four (4) years anyway.

Jack Wilson 8 years, 9 months ago

Hmmm ... Ellis thinking too much. Not just going out there and playing. Not just being "reactionary."

I would not say that is a problem unique to Ellis.

It is a problem that plagues players that get quick hooks. I have no doubt Self is correct about Ellis. And I'm not suggesting that the quick hook is the only cause. It's not. I'm just pointing out that there may be a reason why freshmen, or others, play hesitantly.

An example is McLemor; he gets to play. I haven't seen him get the quick hook yet.

If you think your first mistake is going to land you on the bench, it is natural that you will play tighter, and more reserved.

That being said, my bet is that coach Self has an "equity" system. Most coaches do. You build up enough positive equity, you get more rope. Positive equity can include overwhelming talent -- McLemore. Or not -- Selby (meaning it seemed like he had little "equity"). EJ has never had the same "equity" that Taylor had. Taylor got more rope than any player in KU history.

Regardless, the substantial contribution of the quick hook to a player's psyche, and his ability to just play, and to play "reactionary" as Self put it, can't be ignored.

ParisHawk 8 years, 9 months ago

Another example is HEM: he misspells "McLemore" but he gets to keep on posting...

REHawk 8 years, 9 months ago

To wit, you hope to see Perry earn more than his current portion of minutes at the 4 spot, in hopes that he can loosen up and learn thru his own mistakes without the threat of the quick hook? Just as Ben appears to have been allowed to do?

KGphoto 8 years, 9 months ago

"Taylor got more rope than any player in KU history."

Good one HEM.

jb may I borrow your keyboard? {Command C, Command V} Thanks.

Michael Bratisax 8 years, 9 months ago

I remember Russell Rob's first season and was a bit surprised that he didn't transfer, He was on a very short leash but came back as one of the teams best defenders and maintained a high assist rate to TOs.

Some kids can handle that and others i.e. Micah Downs cannot.

I would like to see HCBS leave the freshmen players on the court a little longer, especially in non-conference games, but hard to argue w/his results.

I think he wants mentally tough kids for players he expects to be here for 3-4 years. Purely supposition on my part.

REHawk 8 years, 9 months ago

YeeHaw! Now there lies a challenge!

jaybate 8 years, 9 months ago


I was meant to forget, so that you would remember. :-)

Hindus too. Native Americans and native Africans had and have a lot of great enlightenment trations too.

Big tent, enlightenment. All welcome! Even me. :-)

jaybate 8 years, 9 months ago


Lao Tse is the biggest medicine of all that I have read and grappled with and you are right to call our attention to it.

Lao Tse is closest to part of my deepest feelings of all the wise ones I have learned of, and from, so far.


Lao Tse is also the wise one that I cannot find a path to trust and live as he says to live. It is not just that I am imperfect, and so fall beneath Moses, Jesus and Buddha, and Mohammed, etc.

I cannot bear the thought of a world in which all persons embrace the Tao and the teachings of Lao Tse, because though I know that it would lead to a better world, I cannot yet bear the thought of letting go of hoops. :-)

For Lao Tse is clear on this. All things that humans care deeply about are distractions from the truth that there is nothing to care about.

Thus, for better and for worse, I cannot embrace the way. I cannot not care for that which I love deeply and unconditionally. Not of my own volition certainly. And since I could never do it, though I can venerate Lao, and recognize the widsom that he offered, I am simply not up to the challenge that he laid down. Not because I cannot be, but because I cannot choose to be.

Lao Tse and his way are the only great, enduring mystery to me of large magnitude created by humans...that I know of.

Something in me knows not to go down that path for down that path even beauty as I know it would disappear and I don't care whether beauty walks a razor's edge or sits comfortably on a flat rock, I cannot give it up.

But you are right to call board rat's attention to the way. If anyone ever truly unlocks Lao Tse, and recovers his wisdom, the world will finally be free of all the rulers.

I have substituted The Legacy for The Tao.

The Legacy extends beyond the KU basketball Legacy.

The Legacy is the universal legacy--all that was, all that could have been, all that is, all that is not, all that will be, and all that could be, but will not be.

The Legacy is not the way.

The Legacy allows for actors, like Buddha and Christ, and for non actors, like Lao Tse.

The Legacy is both.

Now do you see what I say and hear what I write?

The Legacy is.

Tony Bandle 8 years, 9 months ago

Damn!! Now I've got to spend an hour googling zen, wu wei, dialectics, ashram, lucre, etc. so I can understand what you all are talking about.

i guess it would be uncool to simply say he is a talented freshman going through the natural learning curve of competing against higher quality competition!!

kerbyd 8 years, 9 months ago

Oak, I was just remembering studying dichotomous thinking and epistomological premises from way back and it just gave me a headache.

KGphoto 8 years, 9 months ago

Not uncool at all. I had to google everything but Zen, too. But isn't it REALLY cool that we have fans that talk about basketball like this. I mean, it blows my mind. I LOVE IT!

jaybate 8 years, 9 months ago

What you say is true.

And I believe Self is not telling him to stop thinking.

He is telling him to stop thinking and keep thinking.

And the only way to do this is to feel the beat, as you say, or feel the force, as Luke learns, again and again in DVR.

Without the feeling of the beat, the mind is a Caesar over the body, an Emperor Palpatine.

Caesars inevitably destroy the body and the body politic they rule, or sew the conditons for their destruction by ensuing Caesars.

To be freed of being the Caesar of one's own body is to be freed to live and to lead one's self and to lead others wisely.

Without the thinking there is no insight into what the feeling is connected to.

Without connectedness and feeling their is abyss and alienation and depatterning.

With connectedness and feeling there is life lived.

A team offers the connection.

A player freed can feel the beat of himself and of his team.

And now I shall find David Carradine and wander the old west. :-)

Jack Wilson 8 years, 9 months ago

I would just toss this out .. folks have a tendency to write off or mock Kentucky or UCLA based on current performances.

Remember, they have very talented, young players who will develop much like our young players. The same logic applies.

However, I think it might be argued that guys like Muhammad or Poythress or Noel will be much more of a force as they get more game under their belts than less talented freshmen. I guess what I'm saying is that while I love Andrew White, I doubt he will impact games like Muhammad this year. I doubt that tragectory of impact will be steeper. Doesn't look like he'll start. And will Ellis impact like Noel? Maybe. Will his improvement be at a steeper angle than Noel? At least something to think about.

We saw Marquis Teague look horrible in November, and then worthy of a first round pick in March last season.

I just wouldn't scoff at either team just yet.

KGphoto 8 years, 9 months ago

Kentucky maybe. UCLA is a hot mess, and they have shown nothing in recent years to assume they will toughen or improve as the season progresses. I imagine Ben Howland is deservedly and squarely on the block. Missed the dance two of the last four years. Has only two tourney wins in the last four years, and is on pace to be a bubble team again.

So... I scoff at UCLA!

Curtis Stutz 8 years, 9 months ago

I'm with you KG, I had huge expectations for UCLA because they brought back the Wears and Smith down low and Drew II was a more experienced/older player, but Smith is gone and neither Wear has played well this year from what I've seen. Anderson and Bazz are legit, though Anderson hasn't looked quite the savvy player he appeared to be so far either. Jordan Adams has been better than advertised I think though, and I still expect to see a dangerous UCLA team in the Big Dance. Could be a scary 9 seed for somebody. They ought to be a huge longshot to make a FF run though.

UK just depends, Poythress is coming into his own, Goodwin hasn't been as hot lately but is still a stud, and if Harrow ever comes around they're right back on track. WCS and NN will only get better, Wiltjer can't play much worse, Mays has been a good addition for them.

Ben Berglund 8 years, 9 months ago

So I got bored for a minute last night and started watching some highlights of next year's recruiting class. I don't want us to get ahead of ourselves, so this is not really about them. But while I was there I saw a video of Jacksmack - Jack Harry's somewhat inane commentary. This particular episode was him admitting he had been wrong about last year's team (obviously - this is not about them either). During his commentary, he said that part of what made HCBS so good was his brutal honesty and that he didn't play mind games. Actually he said (about Bill's comments after the Davidson loss) "Self was not using those words as some kind of psychological ploy... to fire up his troops - he doesn't operate that way." Anyway, that was as off-base as the comments he was already there apologizing for.

My point is that Bill needs to do what Bill needs to do. By sacrificing some scoring now to get into Perry's head and make him go beast mode, he is investing in the future of this team. He's doing the same thing with AW3. He doesn't do it much with seniors or OADs, but everyone else gets what I've seen referred to around here as the "toughening box." That, combined with his X and O brilliance is what makes HCBS the best coach in America.

Here's a link to Jack, if you're interested:

KGphoto 8 years, 9 months ago

That guy is such a turd.

What's Jack Smack going to do, now that half of his Big 12 listening audience doesn't compete against Misery? Nobody will care that he hates KU. He's done.

HawkKlaw 8 years, 9 months ago

This is, yet again, just Coach Self sending not-so-subtle messages through the media to Perry Ellis. He's been harping on this all season - "Ellis looks like a deer in the headlights." "He thinks too much." "He's not aggressive enough."

But he revealed something more in this article: He's expecting the transition from "deer in the headlights" to "playing, not thinking" by around Xmas. My guess is, when the Spring semester begins, Ellis will be the starter from then on out.

Bill Self is just teaching Ellis how to be a big time player at KU before he throws him into the fire.

Step 1: Learn the system.

Step 2: Use your immense talents to dominate within the system.

As for HEM's "quick hook" theory: Of course Ellis is thinking too much about getting the quick hook when he gets in the game. Bill Self's point is that good players get past that.

Think about Naadir Tharpe last season. He was on the shortest leash of anyone on the team. Every turnover, he got the hook (and boy, there were a lot of them). He no doubt played tight and over-thought a lot of things, which contributed to the turnovers and poor play.

Contrast that with this season.

Naadir doesn't turn the ball over, excels in running the offense, makes smart plays and generally plays a lot looser on both ends of the court. It's like night and day with Naadir. He's learned how to get past the fear of getting the quick hook.

Good players figure out how to let go of that fear. After all, this is not a charity to help Ellis' draft stock. It's KU basketball. The competition should be fierce. If a player gets minutes on the court and doesn't know where he's supposed to be or what he's supposed to do, he shouldn't be playing a whole lot.

Contrast Ellis' play with Young's. Young is all energy and instinct. He doesn't worry about where he's supposed to be on the court because he has gotten past that. He knows he's right where he is supposed to be and doesn't have to think about it at all. That's where Perry Ellis will be and it sounds like Bill Self expects the shift from "playing tight" to "using instinct to play well within the system" pretty soon.

Jack Wilson 8 years, 9 months ago

Hawk: I think you make some great points.

I would say that your post down below in response to Jaylark frames the issue -- do you need the quick hook to show development long term?

And is the quick hook detrimental in the short term?

The quick hook irritated me to no end ... mainly when it resulted in Morningstar playing over EJ or Releford.

I guess it just makes me cringe to see Self the minute there's mistake, pop up, look down the bench in disgust, and react out of anger or frustration. No one will ever convince me that there is a big picture "plan" in those moments. It seems apparent "why" he's doing it, but I'm not convinced the "why" relates to development of a player.

One note on McLemore. I think most who really watch the defense will agree. McLemore has made significant mistakes on defense. It just slides. And I think it slides because he is a special player, and one we really have to have on the court.

I would also argue that the times when freshmen get substantial minutes is usually directly related to the depth on the roster. If Self has to play a freshman, he's liable to be more patient.

Darin Bradley 8 years, 9 months ago

Didn't see this before I posted. Agree with a lot said here. Quick hook has rarely shown dividends. The other concern is future All-Americans fearing coming to KU by watching Self's reaction to Perry who has all the tools and smarts. Not bashing coach but there's some consistancy issues. BMac, Traylor, even EJ have been torched defensively yet the reaction is not near what Perry receives.

HawkKlaw 8 years, 9 months ago

"Quick hook has rarely shown dividends."

So developing players like Cole, Darnell, Chalmers, Darrell, Wright, etc into NBA players is not considered a "dividend" in your book?

Eight straight Big XII banners is not a "dividend"?

An 84% winning percentage is not a "dividend"?

Two Final Fours and a National Championship is not a "dividend"?

Naadir Tharpe learning how to not turn the ball over is not a "dividend"?

All-Americans will see what Self has done for players like BMac, Rush, Chalmers, Wright, TRob, the Morris', Tyshawn, Cole, Darnell, Darrell (I'll stop here but the list goes on) and they will only be worried about coming to Kansas if they're afraid of hard work. (Hint: Bill Self doesn't want those guys anyway.)

Self's reaction to Perry is the way it is because Perry has the smarts and the tools, but he hasn't put it all together yet. I understand what you're saying, but I'm not going to argue with what I would perceive as very sizable "dividends."

jaybate 8 years, 9 months ago

What HawkKlaw said.

One can say one would rather do it another way, but it has worked in many, many cases now.

HawkKlaw 8 years, 9 months ago

It's impossible for any of us to say whether or not the quick hook helps in the long-term or hinders in the short-term. But I would point your attention to the KU careers of players like Chalmers, Wright, RussRob, Sherron, Cole, Withey, etc. These guys all had some rough early years with Self before becoming fully-developed (physically and mentally) and ready to play at the next level. They all have fond memories of KU and to my knowledge none of them have mentioned anything like "Bill Self was way too hard on me my freshman year and didn't develop me the way he should have."

Isn't Bill Self's job as a college coach (besides winning a ton of games so that all us fans stay happy) to get players physically and mentally ready to go on and do great things once they leave Kansas? I would argue that it is and that he's had a ton of success doing it his way.

I know that it appears to us that Coach Self over-reacts to certain mistakes and yanks players too quickly, but none of us know how much time and effort Bill Self spent in practice trying to get that player to play smart/make changes to his game. If a player makes the same mistakes in practice that he does in games, he's going to find his way to the bench quickly.

Jaybate calls this the "toughening box." Perry Ellis is planted firmly within it right now. But it's not as if Perry Ellis will never see time on the court. In fact, it's the contrary. Bill Self wants Perry Ellis to get to that point where he can play more and not be a liability to the team while he's out there. He basically said in this article that he expects really big things from Perry Ellis, and he expects those things to start happening very soon. But he can't in good conscience put a player out there if he doesn't feel like the player is ready.

You mentioned that when Self has to play freshmen, he is more patient. I don't think that's necessarily the case. Case and point: Naadir Tharpe last year. I don't think I've seen anyone get the hook more than he did last year. KU desperately needed him. But Bill Self was not going to turn over the keys to the Camero to someone who didn't know how to drive.

And look at Naadir this year. It's like night and day. He rarely turns the ball over this year, which was the biggest reason he didn't get minutes last year. The "toughening box" approach appears to be working for Naadir.

I've seen BMac make some mistakes on D, but as you mentioned, he's one of those "special" players that doesn't get such a quick hook because of what he brings to the table on offense. If you give BMac the quick hook, you're going to be missing out on about 10-20 points a game from that position. Perry Ellis doesn't contribute like that yet. I think he will. Bill Self thinks he will. He's just got some work to do.

Jack Wilson 8 years, 9 months ago

Again, I really think all of your points make great sense. Good stuff.

jaybate 8 years, 9 months ago

Solid reply, HawkKlaw.

Very persuasive.

KansasComet 8 years, 9 months ago

Morningstar 30.4 Minutes as a Sophomore 21.4 Minutes as a Junior 27.6 Minutes as a Senior

10 minutes a game maybe. 20+ ridiculous. Time that could have been spent developing 4 star and 5 star talent.

jaybate 8 years, 9 months ago

Leaving out star counts and eye tests, and just judging on skills and performance, Morningstar would easily be starting on this team and this team would be quite a bit better at this juncture, if he were.


KansasComet 8 years, 9 months ago

25 year old Senior, he was not better, he could not come close to hanging with his own peers. I have nothing against him, I just feel his minutes were above hat they should have been.

Michael Sillman 8 years, 9 months ago

I agree with HEM that the quick hook is detrimental to the young guys particularly Tharpe. I'm a 3 strikes guy. If you do 3 bad things in a row without a good thing then you are out. Self clearly does not share that philosophy unless you are a Senior or a special player like Mclemore that you can't take out.

HawkKlaw 8 years, 9 months ago

One could argue that it is detrimental in the short-term, but it eventually pays off big time when a player learns how to play well without the fear of getting the quick hook (as I mentioned above, contrast Naadir 2011 vs. Naadir 2012). At this point, Naadir's got it (undoubtedly because he got the quick hook so many times last season).

There are certain "special" players that will get minutes even if they make their fair share of mistakes. Players like Brandon Rush, Xavier Henry, Josh Selby and Ben McLemore come to mind. Then again, Ben McLemore knows where he's supposed to be and what he's supposed to do (probably due to the fact that he practiced with the team all second semester last year). Ellis doesn't...yet.

lawerencejayhawk 8 years, 9 months ago

When talking about our freshman class, let's take a breif look at some stats of our freshmen. In Eurpore our best two players on this Kansas team were Perry Ellis and Andrew White III. Neither were in the top 3 of minutes played but were #1 and #2 in scoring. Perry rebounded well with a 5.5 average, Shot 65% from the floor, 87% from the free throw line and 10.3 points per game. Andrew White III led in scoring and in steals with a 11 point per game average. This was against professional players, some of which are in the NBA this season. You must also know the Europe trip was in early August and only after ten offical Kansas pratices with Bill Self not coaching every game (KU Assistants)

In conclussion, the new type of recruit Perry and AWIII, has the talent when they arrived but KU must do a better job developing this talent into the system, so they can be more productive sooner rather than later. Maybe even a coach whose responsibility is to develop recruits in the Bill Self system to eliminate early struggles.

Perry, we love you in Lawerence. Keep working hard & good luck!

Darin Bradley 8 years, 9 months ago

Interesting that HCBS knows Perry needs reps yet yanks him out of the game at the slighest mistake. It doesn't add up. Perry by far is the best four we have and he's a freshman. These early games should be used to develop him, not rip him at every turn. ( see any time out during the last 4 games) Yes, Perry is a thinker but you knew that during the recruiting process. Leave him in the game so he can learn especially if he's "very important b/c he can score". I'm a huge Self fan but his handling of Perry thus far has been curious. Maybe a different approach will yield better results. Hate to see Perry not reach his full potential.

Rock Chalk!

ParisHawk 8 years, 9 months ago

Sort of the opposite of posters on bulletin boards?

Tony Bandle 8 years, 9 months ago

HAHAHA YUKYUK...hoisted on all of our own petards...well done!!

jaybate 8 years, 9 months ago

I can't tell if Perry has Michael level want to.

But nobody wins four high school championships, or whatever he did, without the fire.

Swish otherwise.

Ted Collins 8 years, 9 months ago

One thing appears crystal clear to me from a careful reading of these comments (and others on this board). Jaybate is not an MU grad. :)

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