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Thursday, April 25, 2013

Basketball recruiting notebook: KU courts Memphis transfer Tarik Black

Memphis forward Tarik Black dunks against Michigan State forward Adreian Payne (5) in the second half of a third-round game of the NCAA college basketball tournament Saturday, March 23, 2013, in Auburn Hills, Mich.

Memphis forward Tarik Black dunks against Michigan State forward Adreian Payne (5) in the second half of a third-round game of the NCAA college basketball tournament Saturday, March 23, 2013, in Auburn Hills, Mich.

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Tarik Black, a junior power forward from the University of Memphis who has announced plans to transfer, is being courted by Kansas University and Duke, among others.

He will be immediately eligible next season, following his graduation in May.

KU coaches were slated to visit with the 6-foot-9, 262-pounder on Wednesday night — a day after Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski met with Black in Black’s hometown of Memphis. Zagsblog.net reported that Black has also met with coaches from San Diego State.

Black averaged 8.1 points and 4.8 rebounds a game off 58.9 percent shooting (103 of 175) last season. He hit 52 of 116 free throws for 44.8 percent. He started five of 32 games, averaging 20.8 minutes a game for the (31-5) Tigers. He was ranked No. 54 nationally by Rivals.com in the recruiting Class of 2010.

Wrote Matt Giles of ESPN.com: “Though his playing time was limited, he has shown the potential to carve out space on the interior and grab a plethora of offensive rebounds, posting an offensive rebounding percentage of more than 10 percent in his three seasons in Conference USA. There were reports that Black recently met with the ACC program’s (Duke) coaching staff, but Gary Parrish of CBSsports.com clarifies: ‘Duke put a fullcourt press on Tarik Black yesterday. Mike Krzyzewski, Steve Wojciechowski, Nate James visited his home.’”

Labissiere offered

KU and Kentucky have offered a scholarship to Skal Labissiere, a 6-9, 200-pound sophomore power forward from Evangelical Christian School in Cordova, Tenn., ESPN.com reports. Labissiere, who is originally from Haiti, is ranked No. 6 in the Class of 2015 by Rivals.com.

The Lexington Herald-Leader reports that Labissiere was 13 when his house crumbled in an earthquake, leaving him buried in rubble. His father dug him out and Labissiere was not able to walk for a few weeks. He moved to the U.S. later in 2010 with the help of “Reach Your Dream,” a non-profit organization that helps international youths enroll in schools in the U.S. to pursue a college education. For the full story on Labissiere, click here.

Freeman available again

One-time KU recruit Allerik Freeman has decommitted from UCLA and reopened his recruitment. Freeman, a 6-4 shooting guard from Findlay Prep in Henderson, Nev., is ranked No. 81 in the Class of 2013 by Rivals.com.

“I think Al just wants to exercise all due diligence in making this major life decision with the change in circumstances at UCLA,” Findlay Prep coach Todd Simon told CBSsports.com.

UCLA recently hired New Mexico’s Steve Alford to replace the fired Ben Howland. Freeman chose UCLA over KU, Ohio State, Duke, Villanova and others.

“He’s a powerful scoring guard who uses his strength and body to finish through contact around the rim. He is also solid in the mid-range, and makes shots along the baseline as well. Freeman has also improved his ball-handling and penetration ability,” wrote Jeff Borzello of CBSsports.com.

Comments

Alex Wishart 1 year, 4 months ago

This is all nice news and all but I think all we really care about at this point is Wiggins.

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Jason Keller 1 year, 4 months ago

lol we ain't getting Wiggins, bud. You better just hope we get a couple of these guys.

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Terry N Tom Denner 1 year, 4 months ago

I agree 100% with you on Wiggins. Let the Drama Queen go to Kentucky where he can get a personal Tutor to do all his home work. Maybe by the time he gets drafted after his 1 year and out he will be able to know how to sign his full name on a NBA contract.

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Scatterhawk 1 year, 4 months ago

I'm gonna tell you something, and I want you to know I mean it sincerely: you're an insufferable smear of smegma.

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Mike Bratisax 1 year, 4 months ago

kellerman411. It's just falling on deaf ears. Getting Tarik Black would be a far better get in the long run. Between him and Hunter Mickelson, we will have added depth and experience giving us a dominating frontcourt and combined with the deadly accurate threes this team is easily capable of knocking down, expectations will rise far quicker than previously thought.

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Andrew Cox 1 year, 4 months ago

yeah I gave up on Wiggins awhile ago, if we get him I will be ecstatic if we dont no big deal. I would love the kid from memphis!

1

Kevin Huffman 1 year, 4 months ago

I'd rather get the 17 & 11 kid from Tulane, Josh Davis....not sure why I haven't heard about us going after him..

4.8 Rbs. & 44.5% FT-shooting?!?!?!?

Ok, so he'd be like our 5th man for our front-line!!!!

NEXT!!!

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Mike Bratisax 1 year, 4 months ago

Josh Davis is a fifth year transfer and wants to go to a school where he will start immediately. Probably will go to Gonzaga or North Carolina State.

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Joe Ross 1 year, 4 months ago

Um...yeah. Wiggins ain't comin' to Kansas.

1

Mike Bratisax 1 year, 4 months ago

I don't want to be included in that "we"... Personally, I'm already bored with his "all about me" act.

As great Wiggins has the potential to be, let the drama queen go to Kentucky where he will fit in nicely.

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actorman 1 year, 4 months ago

I'm SO sick of people ragging on the kid. That's the same type of crap that people spew every year when someone takes his time making a decision.

There has been NOTHING in the way he's acted that has indicated he's "all about me." The only thing he's done is taken his time to make one of the hardest decisions of his life. I'm sure that when you were 17 or 18, you were able to instantly make every tough decision in life, but some people may not be quite as decisive as you were. Give the kid a break.

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Mike Bratisax 1 year, 4 months ago

Well let's see actorman... How many unsigned players are there left in the class of 2013? This really isn't a hard question.

If you can count up to (1) then you can probably answer correctly and low and behold, the only unsigned player is the number one rated/ranked player left. Anyone who doesn't see his entourage accompanying him everywhere while he "thinks through his decision" knows that this guy is loving every second of this.

NOTHING in the way he's acted that has indicated he's "all about me".. Really? Are you absolutely oblivious to what's been happening. Some kids take longer to decide? That excuse wore itself out a long time ago.

But, keep those blinders on and refuse to look at any information that might challenge your position. "Give the kid a break"... Here's better bit of advice, pull your head out of a certain orifice that I will leave unnamed and give the rest of us I break. Wiggins is nothing but a talented DRAMA QUEEN who we would be better without in the long run.

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Mike Bratisax 1 year, 4 months ago

actorman..you need to act like a man? Drag Queen?

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Mike Bratisax 1 year, 4 months ago

ralster.. You can bring the horses down to the watering hole but you can't make them drink.

Despite all the evidence to the contrary, there will remain a small vocal minority that just can't see the whole picture. Only one player from rivals top 150 is not signed and it just happens to be Wiggins.. The number one player according to rivals.

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Jack Jones 1 year, 4 months ago

No doubt that's possibly true based on the voluminous number of comments on this board ~ fortunately, our coaching staff has a more rational perspective.

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KEITHMILES05 1 year, 4 months ago

Why Freeman would sign to play for Ben Howland compared to the other schools offered is beyond me.

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Ashwin Rao 1 year, 4 months ago

Does Freeman get to play immediately as he is leaving due to Coaching change?

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Jack Wilson 1 year, 4 months ago

I think he has to get a release from his LOI. Then he could play immediately. Can't imagine that they would deny that release.

Can't imagine that Freeman would look at our 2 and 3 spots with Selden, Frankamp, Greene, and White and say "you know what, that's a good place for me to go."

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Kevin Huffman 1 year, 4 months ago

Ummmm, who's to say that Selden couldn't possibly actually be an OAD? Additionally, I think Frankamp's ALWAYS going to be a combo. G kind of like Hinrich was.

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Mike Bratisax 1 year, 4 months ago

Anderson refused to give a release to Hunter Mickelson..but what would you expect from a former Missouri head coach?

Especially since Kansas was most likely his first choice.

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Mike Bratisax 1 year, 4 months ago

According to more than one recruiting site, Seldon is listed as the only true 2 on this team. I think adding Trevor Lacy would be a really good insurance policy. Granted there are other players who can slide into the 2 position but both Greene and White, are more natural at the three and rivals number seven point guard, Connor Frankamp can slide up to the 2 if necessary All three have the required skills but I would rather see them at their natural position.

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Ron Franklin 1 year, 4 months ago

Withey had to sit out a year due to coach change didn't he? And if I recall he finally did get released.

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Steven Mathew 1 year, 4 months ago

That was because Withey was a freshman in college already. Freeman is an incoming freshman so he doesn't have to worry about sitting out a year.

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Jonathan Allison 1 year, 4 months ago

Withey was already on on schalorship, on campus, and taking classes when he decided to leave, hence he was a transfer. Freeman hasn't graduated HS yet, is not enrolled in college yet, hence he is not a transfer, and not subject to the transfer rules. However, if he is not granted release from his LOI, then he I don't think that he can play elsewhere until he is released.

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Joe Baker 1 year, 4 months ago

Remember X and Memphis? Cal left and Pastner assumed the role. X was able to leave as an incoming frosh and play.

3

oldalum 1 year, 4 months ago

As I remember, X didn't sign an LOI, just a scholarship agreement that hinged on the coach staying. Does anyone else remember that or is that my creative memory.

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Jonathan Allison 1 year, 4 months ago

I think that Henry DID sign an LOI to play at Memphis and had to be released from it to come to Kansas. He didn't sign an LOI for Kansas because the rule states that he coiuldn't sign a second LOI at that time. So he signed a grant-in-aid financial agreement with Kansas to accept his scholarship.

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LAJayhawk 1 year, 4 months ago

Plastic is 100% correct. The grant-in aid agreement is what he signed with KU, as he had already exhausted his single LOI at Memphis, which had released him from the agreement.

http://www.kuathletics.com/sports/m-baskbl/spec-rel/042309aab.html

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Eric Baker 1 year, 4 months ago

What happened was Xavier signed a LOI with Memphis, and when they had the coaching change he asked out of the LOI. He couldn't sign a new LOI since you're only allowed one, but he signed a grant in aid, or something like that, with KU to show his commitment.

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mahkmood 1 year, 4 months ago

I wouldn't be that interested in a guy that shoots 44% from the line (Black). Maybe he could improve, but otherwise he would be a liability in tough games. Compared to Self and Coach K I know nothing, so if Bill and K wants him, it probably makes sense to sign him.

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doolindalton 1 year, 4 months ago

There's nothing more irritating than a kid with a division one scholarship who cannot shoot free throws consistently. It makes him disfunctional on the court and is akin to not being able to dribble a basketball, i.e. something that should have been learned in sixth grade.

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dylans 1 year, 4 months ago

Which one of Roy's teams are you talking about? 2003?

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Mike Bratisax 1 year, 4 months ago

Good post doolindalton. Not hitting free throws seems to be one consistent at Kansas that continues from one coaching staff to the next.

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Mike Bratisax 1 year, 4 months ago

It was the anti-jinks working that day. I've heard that there are coaches that specialize in shooting free throws. No idea on how much something like that would cost but it would be well worth it. How many games have we lost due to free throws.

Especially, when you think about our winning percentage. There aren't that many games over the season that we lose but it seems the bigger the moment the lower the free-throw percentage.

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dylans 1 year, 4 months ago

Could've used it (a big big w/ a mean streak) this year from time to time.

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Mike Bratisax 1 year, 4 months ago

Not just Perry, but Embiid, Traylor, Lucas and Mickelson.

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Benz Junque 1 year, 4 months ago

Yeah, that Mitch McGary kid at Michigan isn't very good either since he only shot 44% free throws this year. RIDICULOUS to not want a big body that grabs lots of offensive rebounds becuase he clangs a few free throws. KU should be rolling out the red carpet for Tarik Black. He is a big, strong experienced player who would thrive in KU's system.

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Mike Bratisax 1 year, 4 months ago

Even if he does need to sit during the last few key minutes of a game because of the fear that he will be fouled. For him, a foul is basically a turnover.

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mahkmood 1 year, 4 months ago

Concerning Labissiere being offered a scholarship by UK (and KU)... seriously, how many months does Greasy Cal have left until he puts UK under probation. The guy should've been banned from NCAA coaching after Memphis. Makes me want to puke every time I read about another top recruit associated with Calipari.

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dylans 1 year, 4 months ago

The violations at your current school should follow you to your next school. That could clean somethings up.

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Lance Cheney 1 year, 4 months ago

Isn't that what happened when Sampson left OU for Indiana? Didn't the sanctions follow him to Indiana? Or am I way off base? I apologize, I'm just going off the top of my head without doing any preliminary research.

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actorman 1 year, 4 months ago

I don't think that happened, but I think after he f***ed up again at Indiana, the NCAA penalized him by not allowing him to coach anywhere for a while. Maybe that's what you're thinking of.

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KansasComet 1 year, 4 months ago

Recruiting is one thing I rarely concern myself with at Kansas. Coach Self always seems to get the players that he really wants. He gets players that fit the program. We will be a top 5 team again next year.

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southwindjay 1 year, 4 months ago

I don't think we will get Wiggens and I'm not sure we want the side show that would come along with it.

Bill is a player developer not an AAU All star handler.

I would rather see us pick up a few of these guys. I am done with one and done I just don't enjoy that brand of basketball.

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Bob Thompson 1 year, 4 months ago

I will agree with you. I really like the 4 and 5 year players that play their heart out for KU.

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nuleafjhawk 1 year, 4 months ago

Agreed. As much as I love Ben McLemore, he wasn't around long enough to get to know him (as much as a fan can get to know a player !) and really consider him family. Yeah, yeah, I know - he's a Jayhawk for life, family forever, blah blah blah, but you know what I mean. A one and done will never come close, in my book, to comparing to all the guys who stuck it out for 4 or 5 years.

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dylans 1 year, 4 months ago

I love Ben too, but you're right. Ten years from now I will remember that it was fun to watch Ben, but we barely got to see him play. Over the next ten years there will be several 3-5 year players who I will become heavily invested in. It just takes time to form the bond that lasts. I will always root for Ben (he was mine and my wifes favorite player to watch this year - we drove 6hrs to see him and KU plays twice) but if he'd played another year at KU he would hold a larger part of my conscience and heart.

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Tony Bandle 1 year, 4 months ago

Respectfully, just a bit harsh there nuleaf...he was here for two years and did fight his entire family and all his friends including his Mom to become a Jayhawk rather than go to Misery like they all wanted. That in itself qualiifes him as a lifetime Jayhawk in my book. Sure, another year or two would have been great but both sides won on this deal.

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nuleafjhawk 1 year, 4 months ago

Oak, I was just using him as an example and meant no disrespect. I really do love the guy. I did express a bit of an attitude there and I'm sorry about that, but the whole OAD thing has been a pet peeve of mine for a while. ( I know he was here two years, but there is one heck of a difference between practicing and working out with the other players and actually putting in game time - you know that.)

I would express the same bad attitude if we were talking about people texting while driving.

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Tony Bandle 1 year, 4 months ago

Fair enough.......+1000 on the texting/driving thing. Two years ago, a 20 something girl rear-ended and totalled my beloved Honda because she was "socially mediating!!"

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nuleafjhawk 1 year, 4 months ago

I'm glad she didn't total YOU !

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actorman 1 year, 4 months ago

Well said, Oakville.

I also think there's a HUGE difference between someone who just wants to use college as just a stepping stone to the pros and someone who really relishes the college experience but feels like he has to leave to take care of his family. A lot of the OAD's seem to be the former, but I think we can all agree that McLemore was clearly the latter.

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Kevin Huffman 1 year, 4 months ago

Actually, I'm rather fond of the 3-year players like T.Rob, the Morrises, Chalmers, etc.

1

Mike Bratisax 1 year, 4 months ago

Good call.. These are the players that you build your program around.

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Benz Junque 1 year, 4 months ago

What is wrong with you people? Are you just talking yourself into being OK if Wiggins doesn't come to KU? What "sideshow" are you talking about? Why does everyone think Wiggins is a primadona? He has to chose between Kentucky (where he'd have an amazing team aroud him but get a lesser role than other teams), Kansas (where he'd also be part of a great team and be close to where his borther plays), Florida State (where his parents are pushing HARD for him to go) and Carolina (where he has friends that go). The kid seems like a typical shy, confused 18 year old that isn't suer what he wants to do.

And if you think KU is a better team without Wiggins than with Wiggins then you are a fool. He is an incredible player. I would be thrilled (and surprised) to see him come to Kansas. KU would be an instant Final Four contender with him on board.

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RJ King 1 year, 4 months ago

Couldn't agree more. I have no problem with posters who say we WON'T get Wiggins. I too, think our chances are pretty slim.

I'm disgusted by those who say they don't WANT him, based on speculative, stereotypical judgements about his arrogance and motive, as though it were fact. Have they coached or played with Andrew? Taught or attended class with him? Are they good friends or family?

Obviously, many find pleasure in bashing and throwing out snotty, mean-spirited assumptions. I'm ashamed our fan base has such cowards hiding under hooded cyber robes, grabbing handfuls of sour grapes before the dinner bell has even rung.

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Mike Bratisax 1 year, 4 months ago

lmao..so BayHawkaholic is your real name? TFF!

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RJ King 1 year, 4 months ago

Seven Seven Eight Two -

I'm against bashing, stereotyping, and making assumptions about an 18 year-old kid for whom we have not seen years of a certain type of behavior on which to justify that criticism. There have been many articles written which could make a case for Wiggins either way. In my post, I'm not making assumptions, I'm being critical of documented statements. The derogatory comments from our fan base are there for the world to see.

I understand your knee jerk reaction in finding hypocrisy in my post, but I see a difference. Whether you find Wiggins arrogant or not, his identity is exposed. Therefore, it's poster anonymity vs Wiggins identified. When I chastised other posters it was my anonymity vs theirs. Additionally, I'm not being nasty myself. I'm simply encouraging others to back off, at least until we know more.

I don't understand some of the flippancy and hate on this site. I don't get what's behind some of the anger out there. But if you still want to curse at me, please do so to my face. Thank you.

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Mike Bratisax 1 year, 4 months ago

I heard the same about Kris Humphries... Automatic Final Four contender but thankfully Roy Williams listened to his players and did not offer him a scholarship. Team chemistry is often more important than team talent. You might have noticed that once again, Kentucky had the top recruiting class in 2012.. How well did that work out. All that talent but no team chemistry.

Too bad you couldn't end your post without branding everyone as fools for not thinking as you do. There's a name for that.. but I will leave it unsaid.

It gets to be pretty sad when we have the Nazi posters telling us all how to think. Himmler would be proud.

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chriz 1 year, 4 months ago

Yeah, I think it's safe to say we'd all be THRILLED to get Wiggins but don't think we have a chance. And that's okay. There are tons of people who would love to have Bill Self as their coach, but they're just gonna have to settle.

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Brett McCabe 1 year, 4 months ago

For all of those who are obsessed with Rivals rankings, the kid from Memphis was ranked in the top 60 nationally and couldn't crack the starting lineup or shoot over 50% from the line.

I'm not sure who actually compiles these rankings but it is clear that they have absolutely no idea what they are doing.

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Jonathan Allison 1 year, 4 months ago

just because you have absolutely no idea what they're doing doesn't mean that they have absolutely no idea what they're doing. I have no doubt that a guy who's 6'9 and 260 lbs dominated in HS. And free throw shooting has as much to do with confidence as it does mechanics. A change of scenery and a new start can work wonders at times. Sometimes however it doesn't work, but even if it doesn't, this player doesn't tie our hands in recruiting because he's one and done.

Worst case, Tarik Black has a bad attitude and disrupts team chemistry. This team has very little chemistry going at this point anyway, because half the team will be new. If Black doesn't produce then Ellis, Traylor, Lucas, Embiid will take all his minutes. There's really nothing to lose.

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Kevin Huffman 1 year, 4 months ago

except I would argue taht we're actually thinner at the '2" or "3" than the "4" / "5".

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Jack Wilson 1 year, 4 months ago

Have you ever taken time to look at the Rivals rankings historically? Obviously not. You are clearly in the myopic group that criticizes Rivals because they aren't perfect. I wonder why coach Self's main recruiting targets are guys who are ranked highly by Rivals. It's an amazing coincidence.

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Brett McCabe 1 year, 4 months ago

Let's see.....you promote yourself as the top rating service in the country for high school athletes...you charge for your subscriptions....you employ full-time staff...and you've now convinced people to go on discussion boards and defend your ineptness? Well, then, you've done your job in successfully cashing checks.

I understand "missing" on a kid somewhere between 200 and 300, but how do you miss so badly on one of the 60 best players in the entire United States? How has Frank Mason miraculously improved his game so much in such a short time? And Mr. Embiid?

You do understand that Rivals follows coach Self, not the other way around, right? If not, go ahead an re-up that subscription.

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KanFan27 1 year, 4 months ago

I understand where you're coming from, but it is really easy to miss on these kids. You cannot always know how a kid will adjust to the faster speed and higher competition of college an how they will absorb their new coaches style. I do think there is a little following of top coaches, but not completely. Rivals ranked Mason 76 and does not list him as having any other top offers yet ranks Freeman 84 while holding offers from 5 top notch colleges. They don't always go with who has the most offers. And no one can blame them for missing on Embiid. The kid has just started playing basketball. I agree with you on several points and while it is not the end all be all there is some legitimacy to the rivals rankings.

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dylans 1 year, 4 months ago

Embiid has only played 18 months of organized ball period. I think the better question is, "How in the world did coach Self know about Embiid?"

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Jack Wilson 1 year, 4 months ago

Kingfisher .. respectfully, you really have no clue. I've posted this before .. ranking services are just the best indicators we have. That's it. NFL GMs miss on first rounders every year. It is an inexact science. These are kids, not computer chips. There are some outside the top 100 that exceed their rankings, and are tremendous; some in the top 20 that fail to live up to the billing. But the rankings are the best indicator. More guys that are higher ranked make a bigger impact.

You mention Embiid and Mason .. the idea here is that in the final rankings, they are placed as close to properly as possible. Rankings evolve. First, they may "miraculously" improve their games. Kids do improve. They do get better. A kid outside the top 100 as a sophomore can become a top 20 guy. They can get worse, too. Second, it is also a matter of getting noticed. By the final rankings, the book is pretty good. Third, remember, it's all relative. One year may be loaded .. the #30 guy may be better than the #20 guy the next season.

Of course, Rivals follows coach Self; and other coaches. It is a huge source of their information. Assistants, AAU coaches, an old guy who knows Chicago hoops. Many sources of info. Your mention that Rivals follows coach Self demonstrates a huge flaw in your argument. They do go to the best sources. And it's a compilation of that knowledge and info.

The ranking service are far from inept. It is quite clear that you just don't understand, or want to understand, what they offer and what they do. They don't sell perfection, so don't expect it. On the other hand, expecting perfection makes it a lot easier for you to complain about them.

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Brett McCabe 1 year, 4 months ago

I understand what they do perfectly: perform very poorly at their jobs while getting you to pay them to do it. Why so many excuses?

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Jack Wilson 1 year, 4 months ago

See, they actually do a tremendous job. You just nitpick on the errors in an inexact science. It's like complaining that Ted Williams made outs 6 out of 10 at bats. Folks do this all the time. It's really creating a strawman just to tear down, when the strawman is something different than reality. Whatever floats your boat. You weren't the first, you won't be the last.

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Ethan Berger 1 year, 4 months ago

Go look at the best of the NBA. If you can tell me those guys we not highly ranked and rivals messed it up, then i will agree you. I'll give you a hint, you can't.

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ku_foaf 1 year, 4 months ago

Most of the NBA best were recognized as great at an early age, yes. I think there are plenty of NBA players, some even stars, that were not on the radar much even when playing in college. Maybe they played at small school or NAIA Some play for many years. I don't recall James Hardin being a subject of discussion, but maybe I was clueless. The Big 8 knew Jeff Hornacek of course, but I don't recall him being a household name.

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texashawk10 1 year, 4 months ago

James Harden was the 11th ranked player in the class of 2007 and was a very highly coveted player on the west coast before ultimately choosing Arizona State.

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Brett McCabe 1 year, 4 months ago

Yes, I saw a rose garden yesterday in full bloom and immediately identified it as a rose garden. Please subscribe to my "Captain Obvious" garden identification service. Credit cards only, please.

They miss far more than they make.

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Mike Bratisax 1 year, 4 months ago

Are you starting to choke on that foot you insist on putting in your mouth? You really don't get it do you? It's either that or you're intentionally ignorant.

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Mike Bratisax 1 year, 4 months ago

Obviously you fail to grasp or comprehend that that ranking services are a TOOL. They are not to be the end all for college recruiting. That's why coaches such as HCBS will go out and evaluate these players. You cannot say that the #10 recruit is a guaranteed success but you can say that the top 20 recruits will be more successful than the second 20 recruits. Fairly easy concepts. Even for sardinefishers

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jaybate 1 year, 4 months ago

Black = good add despite baggage, because Self could afford to throw him overboard at any moment. Black would understand this. If he signed, he would be a stellar citizen, unless he were suffering a personality disorder. Black is a bull. A bull needs a good brahma rider. Self is that rider. Josh Pastner? Not.

Freeman? Don't know enough, except that he fits the bill physically.

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DanR 1 year, 4 months ago

Black adds nothing that Justin Wesley doesn't already provide except 4 stars from Rivals he hasn't lived up to, a proven poor work ethic, and 25 pounds of fat.

I know it's bad form to bash a player Self is looking at, but absolutely no one in Memphis is sorry to see their hometown underachiever leave. I suppose it's possible that getting out of Memphis and away from his posse/family could be the spark he needs, but KU isn't the place for a do-over. I'll be surprised if he gets an offer.

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soapisurfriend 1 year, 4 months ago

I also noticed the in-homes with Tyus Jones and Jahlil Okafor went really well. That's good news because those two are likely a package deal. I know they both really like Coach Self and Jones raves about AFH. Okafor tweeted a picture of his dad and Self and it seems like they had a good time.

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Joe Baker 1 year, 4 months ago

You might go to BrannenG's twitter and read the convo between Greene and Okafor. It's interesting, but a little early to read anything into that recruiting option. However, if we get Okafor, it will be early rather than later. If we go the distance, like many recruits, it's going to be interesting.

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dylans 1 year, 4 months ago

For those who don't tweet, what was said?

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Joe Baker 1 year, 4 months ago

soap basically gave the gist of the tweet. He seems to really like Brannen. He really seems to love Self. There is a pic of his dad and Self looking "cool." The boys are calling them "old dudes." It looks like a really good relationship.

Jahlil Okafor @jahprobound 1d
My Pops and coach Self think they cool. Haha pic.twitter.com/y1Z8G2eYC0 View photo ·

Brannen Greene @b_greene14
@jahprobound idk about pops... But ole dude on the right is legit 😜👌👏 3:58 a.m. Wed, Apr 24

The photo in question is funny. His dad and Self have their arms crossed like a couple of rappers.

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Bret Eckert 1 year, 4 months ago

Black is finishing his degree in 3 years. All be it at Memphis. If Duke and Kansas want a guy. He must be worth his salt.

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Jonathan Allison 1 year, 4 months ago

I thought the same thing about the guy finishing his degree in three years. I don't know what his degree is in, or anything else about him, but this tells me that he took a full load every semester and probably in the summers too. For a D1 athlete graduating in 3 years is impressive no matter what your degree and no matter how many tutors you have on staff.

Great work Tarik! Congratulations on getting your degree!

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Kevin Huffman 1 year, 4 months ago

Duke's really hurting iniside losing Kelly & Ma. Plumlee & Marshall Plumlee.

They're pretty desperate for inside help, moreso than Kansas. I think he'd see more minutes at Duke & will likely go there.

No big loss in my opinion.

I'm disappointed not to hear about us going after Josh Davis though (saw a foursome of Gonzaga, Iowa State, Illinois & Villanova (I think)).

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Ludwig Supraphonic 1 year, 4 months ago

Obviously, the coaching staff believes Black can provide some needed minutes. We sure don't need him at crunch time with 45% FT shooting.

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Mel Clare 1 year, 4 months ago

I think we could use another big guy.we have Embid, freshman who is 7'0 230, Ellis soph 6'8 225, Traylor 6'7 and 220 or so and Lucas who is 6'10 and 240...........

We have lots of shooting guards, PG's and wings..........Frankamp, White, Greene, Tharpe, Seldon ect................. we need another guy who is 6'8 or 6'9 to bang down low............Traylor is not tall enough IMO.

Lucas and Embid are going to be C's........

Ellis, Traylor and someone else as PF

Selden and Greene will be SF's

White, Frankamp and again Greene will be SG's

Tharpe, Frankamp, Selden will be PG's.........

Just would like another big...........

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Kevin Huffman 1 year, 4 months ago

I'm the OPPOSITE!!!! We had plans on having another G and now he left the program in A. Adams.

In a pinch Wesley at this point CAN at LEAST provide foul-trouble "depth" if needed.

We have 4 guards and no real "sizable" depth at SG - drop from Selden at 6'-5 to Frankamp at 6'. Br. Greene can spell at the "2" but then we're only 1-deep at the "3.

We need a versatile "1", "2", "3" guy. I could see Freeman in the short-term fitting this need going into next season.

I'd be more excited if we get Tr. Lacey for the season after next though.

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Jack Wilson 1 year, 4 months ago

khuff .. I agree with you on Davis from above. Would have seemed the more logical target.

But our post positions are very weak. We have top 50 guys on the perimeter, plus a junior who knows our system (Tharpe). Seems ideal.

In the post, we have Lucas (not ranked), who was redshirted (and presumably not as good as Traylor by the start of the season, otherwise Lucas would have played); Traylor (#131) who really demonstrated little if any improvement all season; Ellis who is fine; and Embiid who looks like he will be a great player, but time and development may be needed.

And holy jelly beans, Batman, you cite Wesley? Ugh.

Bigs are out biggest need .. a skilled one. Josh Davis would have been nice.

And sniper, Selden is more likely at 2; White clearly a 3.

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Mike Bratisax 1 year, 4 months ago

Lucas has only one more year of eligibility. Why would he go to a school where he would need to compete for the job when there are plenty of other decent Division I programs where you would start immediately?

Lucas will be at Gonzaga next year.

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Joe Ross 1 year, 4 months ago

I see these "player inventory" posts all the time!

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Woody Cragg 1 year, 4 months ago

sniper60-I think Perry could play some at the 3 also, & another bruiser at the 4 would be a better option than a lanky, longer, KY. We just don't know what Wesley can bring to the table at this point. No matter who they fill a spot with, it'll be rough riding for him till he "gets it." The level of success Kevin achieved was remarkable-not to be expected with all transfers. Alot of that success was on the staff, but more was that Kevin was a very special young man who bought in 100%. Guys with makeups like that don't transfer every day.Just proves that desire can be darn near as important as physique. JMO.

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nuleafjhawk 1 year, 4 months ago

This fellow, Tarik, looks kind of angry.

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nuleafjhawk 1 year, 4 months ago

Good point. Maybe we should print up some " Play Angry " t-shirts. That seemed to work pretty well for another team from Kansas.....

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yellowjeep 1 year, 4 months ago

Trevor Lacy from Alabama is also transferring. Word on the street is that KU is showing interest in him. We have a deep guard pool already but if Self&Co are after him I trust their decision.

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Kevin Huffman 1 year, 4 months ago

Trevor Lacey's a SHOOTING GUARD....Not a Point!!!!!!

He'd be HUGE if Selden were to be SOOOOOOO good that he ended up an OAD.

Especially given that he wouldn't be eligible 'til the '14/'15 season anyway.

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Mike Bratisax 1 year, 4 months ago

Who said Lacey was a point guard?

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Joe Baker 1 year, 4 months ago

I see Lacy playing limited mins. If he accepts Self's system, he could use this year to development and learn Self's program. He or even Freeman could literally jump in next year and be a fair factor if we lose Selden. If he's impatient and expects to come in and get big mins, forget it. He'd have to be beyond exceptional. I don't know many who can come in and contribute in the same year. Self's system is not an easy system. You learn it your first year. You practice your second year. You master it your third year. It takes at least 2 years to get Self's system. It takes 3 yrs to master. If you're really patient, you shine your 4th year. I wonder if Self designed it that way on purpose? If you're that good, you're gone anyway after that first year. But if you stay ie. TRob, etc, you're going to learn how to thrive. The longer you stay, the better.

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Kevin Huffman 1 year, 4 months ago

Lacey has to sit out a year (he was a sophomore at Alabama this season). In some ways I like that, in that he'd be available for if Selden were to be good enough to be another OAD for us and then two years for Lacey still after that.

Allerik Freeman's a Freshman next year and would NOT have to sit out since UCLA released him from his letter of intent.

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Kevin Huffman 1 year, 4 months ago

I keep thinking that it's no possibility but just imagine if we DID get Tyus Jones & J. Okafor & what '14/'15 could look like (also could DEFINITELY see Tr. Lacey coming to us):

Ty. Jones / Tharpe / F. Mason (Redshirt?)

Selden (OAD & gone?) / Tr. Lacey / Frankamp

Br. Greene / White III

P. Ellis / Traylor

J. Okafor / Embiid / L. Lucas

Wow!!!!!! now THAT would be a team I'd roll out tehre against ANYBODY!!!!! Only thing I'd be worried about is any chemistry issues with Tharpe taking on a lesser role in his Sr. year compared to next season. Would definitely be guaranteed more time if Selden were an OAD. I think if that would all unfold that F. Mason would be VERY WISE to then redshirt.

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Ethan Berger 1 year, 4 months ago

Tharpe would start and same with Embiid. Self likes his experience

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Kevin Huffman 1 year, 4 months ago

Ummmm, no! Tharpe would not start over No. 2 ranked Tyus Jones & Embiid would not start over No. 1 ranked Jahlil Okafor!!!!!

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soapisurfriend 1 year, 4 months ago

The thing is, if KU somehow did land these guys, they are then in deep with Justise Winslow and Leron Black. It's still a bit too early for predictions, but this would put Cal's reign with top ranked classes on hold a year, even if he only falls to the second spot in the class rankings.

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Kevin Huffman 1 year, 4 months ago

Cal's doing fine for next year. ALREADY got No. 4 Towns Jr. PF/C. EVERYONE claims him as the favorite to land No. 3 Emmanual Mudiay Arlington, TX PG, who quite frankley from everything I've read and seen is ACTUALLY the perfect Bill Self player!!!! :( But again....EVERYONE that Cal wants he get, so.... They're also co-favorites w/ Louisville for No. 5 PF, Trey Lyles.

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soapisurfriend 1 year, 4 months ago

Oh I'm fully aware of what Cal can do and who he is/likely will be bringing in next year. That being said, Towns, while he is a fine player, is no Jahlil Okafor. Okafor is the most dominant big I've seen in years. And while I like Mudiay too, I like Jones just as much.

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texashawk10 1 year, 4 months ago

Not a fan of Black on next year's team because of his character issues. 44% FT shooting is just lazy and a lack of work ethic/discipline. A 2 guard is a bigger need for KU and Lacey or Freeman fill that need very nicely for Self. Both are competent enough ball handlers to put iut there with Frankamp and not have to worry about turnovers like this past year. I would be nore in favor of Freeman because he's likely a 4 year player as opposed to a two year player like Lacey is. I'd be happy with either one of them, but I think Freeman has a little more upside long term than Lacey does for what KU's needs are.

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Ethan Berger 1 year, 4 months ago

We are set at 1-3. What we need is a 4th post player

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Kevin Huffman 1 year, 4 months ago

Boy, couldn't disagree more!!!!!

We have FIVE post players,

probably THE biggest need is SG.

Let's give THE WORST scenario possible for next year.

Let's say Selden goes down with injury. I thnk at that point Brannen Greene has to slide down and start at the '2" w/ White III at the "3".

Ok, now I'm convincing myself that what we really need is a "3" / "4" guy - like yet another Perry Ellis.

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702Hawk 1 year, 4 months ago

The great part of this incoming class is if we don't get any of these kids we are still going to be great. In fact I kind of want to stay were we are and even out the classes. Next year we will only have one potential scholarship graduating unless Black comes. I would love to see this young core get a ton of pt and develop. I hate seeing kids transfer.

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Steve Gantz 1 year, 4 months ago

Kind of funny seeing comments like we wouldn't want Wiggins and all his prima donna ways. We wouldn't want the #1 rated player in the country? I want the #1 player in the country to come to KU, why wouldn't I? Lots of prima donna's have come along and did great in college. Some guys with attitude know how to back it up in a positive way on the court. In addition, Self has a way to humble those guys who try to become bigger than the program.

Does anyone know when Wiggins is going to announce?

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Joe Baker 1 year, 4 months ago

I think most want Wigs regardless of their opinions. I think others are optimistically hopeful. Let's just expect the worse, and hope for the best. Let's not hold our breath, but we all know there's life after losing a top recruit. Self has proven that over and over. KU always manages to have a better than expected year in spite of the recruiting loses.

I thought he would announce or tweet today or tomorrow. If he's so tired of the drama, I'd end it by making a decision. He needs to get away from his coach, parents, friends, and fan bases to make a decision. He knows, but so many people are in his ear every day. I don't think he goes to FLSt and knows it's going to disappoint his parents, so he delays. I don't think he goes to uk or he would've announced already. Calipari has been working overtime on Wigs, which tells me he hasn't given Cal any indications toward uk.

I really think it's down to KU and UNC.

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Robert Brock 1 year, 4 months ago

Wiggins probably made his mind up - for Kentucky - months ago and is waiting for Calipari's cue to go public at the optimal time to draw attention. TV, hats, raving talent "experts"...sigh...

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Tony Bandle 1 year, 4 months ago

Mr. White, Mr. Greene, Mr. Black...all we need is a Mr. Brown, a Mr. Blonde and a Mr. Pink and we're in!!!!

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jaybate 1 year, 4 months ago

We'll call them "The Reservoir Dogs."

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bennybob 1 year, 4 months ago

whoevers Mr. Pink aint gonna like it

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Tyson Ailshie 1 year, 4 months ago

You're not Mr. Purple. Somebody from another job's Mr. Purple. You're Mr. Pink!

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Mike Bratisax 1 year, 4 months ago

Maybe we can get Pink come play at Houck auditorium and leave the other colors for more basketball oriented players.

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Reuben_J_Cogburn 1 year, 4 months ago

Hate to say it folks, but I firmly believe we'd be better off without Wiggins. With these super star OADs, nothing follows but drama. Admit it, we got lucky with Ben McLemore. The kid was a class act and an unselfish player. Humble and down-to-earth.

Let Wiggins go where he doesn't have to play team ball. Let him go where we can be sure he won't be tweeting insults if the coach benches him for being a show-boating idiot.

Have you people seen our recruiting class? They're starting now to project Embiid to be a one-and-done. Seldon will be spectacular, and we have a host of talented roster players and incomings. It will be a roller coaster of a season, but incredibly exciting.

....and we'll be good....very good....again.

Wiggins is making a spectacle of this process, and we shouldn't want a slice of it. If Calipari wants him, let it be. Self is a basketball coach, not an agent.

We won the national championship with zero one-and-dones in 2008, and we made it to the NC game last year with zero McDonald's All-Americans. It can be done.

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Kevin Huffman 1 year, 4 months ago

The thing with McLemore is that it wasn't obvious that he was an OAD. Wasn't he in the mid to late 20's or something in the '11 Class?

Typically, the only USUALLY ALMOST assured OAD's are in the top 10 of the High School Rankings.

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jaybate 1 year, 4 months ago

Anyone that looks at that image of Tarik and wonders whether Self and Consonants really want this guy may be suffering a bit of blindness.

This flipping guy is a beast! And he was exactly what our team last season was missing. A moving screener the size of a right offensive tackle in foot capable of straight drive blocking and releasing for screen blocking. Its the new D1 game. Body blow, body blow, body blow.

Unless Justin Wesley adds 30 hard pounds, KU definitely needs the guy!!!! No way is Landon ready to be an enforcer without a backup enforcer.

The problem is Tarik's 44% FT shooting someone mentioned. But KU's staff has been having success probably using Andy Enfield's shooting mechanics training to bump our brick FT shooters to tolerable level. Frankly, if I were Tarik, I would transfer to Enfield at UCLA and see if Enfield can fix his shooting. No, pretend I never said that!

Here's the thing: Tarik would be perfect rotating both positions in the paint for KU. He would complement Perry fabulously in the age of the moving, pile driver screen; this is why both Self and Consonants want him BAD!!!!! And he would be exactly what either Landen, or Joel needed at the other slog. And imagine how TOUGH KU could play for short stretches with Tarik and Jamari!!!!

Tarik Black is a brain-rattlingmoving screen waiting to happen, whenever he comes in. We need that!!!!

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bennybob 1 year, 4 months ago

Well, in case we didnt already know. 90% of what you read in the recruiting world is complete BS. here's exhibit A:

http://basketballrecruiting.rivals.com/content.asp?CID=1499350

I'm so upset with Tyus over that article. I just Spent 3 hours with him and my brother on Saturday playin call-of-duty and he all but admitted to me hes going to Duke. No clear leader my A**. Also, after Tubby Smiths firing, whatever sliver a chance Minnesota had at keeping him in state vanished.

I wish there was some way i could get in touch with the coaching staff and tell them to stop wasting there time and focus resources on more promising prospects

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Kevin Huffman 1 year, 4 months ago

Don't worry. They're in on ALL of the top PGs in next year's class other than on that's in the heart of Indiana country (don't know the favorites but I know we weren't on his list). There's also some emerging that weren't beign talked about that now are that we're on their list too - including one small guy from KS & one from Louisiana. We're heavy into a 25th-ranked PG from L.A. (Jordan McLaughlin) & a 40th or so-ranked Josh Perkins from Denver. I would DEFININTELY think that we're more likely to land one of them than Ty. Jones or J. Okafor.

Similarly, I could see us in on Myles Turner from Houston PF/C or Tr. Green from out of Georgia (7'-1), who are both emerging & rising.

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DanR 1 year, 4 months ago

This pretty much sums it up:

"...Duke, Kansas, Ohio State and at least 20 other high-major programs are all lined up and working like they're the last 25 dudes in a bar with just one moderately attractive girl. Closing time is in 15 minutes. Somebody just yelled last call."

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TheFloater 1 year, 4 months ago

A little out of context, but what's the chances of Selden being a OAD?

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JayHok 1 year, 4 months ago

I'm a fan of Tharpe. That said how great, in Self's terminology, could KU be if we added a Derrick Rose type point guard in the next year or two. The 2014-2015 lineup is looking amazing. Tharpe will do great but the other positions are so incredibly stacked it makes me wonder if Self is hunting a top shelf PG. If Self could ONCE beat Calipari for one of these premier point guards especially in the next year or two, well, you get the idea. Once Calipari is beaten on a bigtime player and it goes viral on the web Cal's house of dominoes will begin to fall. I really believe that. Wiggins, though not a PG, would be a huge shock to us all but that would be an example that would be a symbolic moment for recruiting. But a top tier PG stolen from under Calipari's thumb would be oh so sweet for the college basketball in general especially if done by Self. And if done in the next year or two, in Self's terminology, a good season really could become great. That KU lineup for the next couple years is beginning to look sick. As I see it from now on its up to the fans to really push the team through the NCAA tournament. We've given away enough NCAA championships in the last four years. Let's use those experiences to inspire and push this fantastic group of players so we can have another truly great season really soon. 2008 has been too long.

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gabrial1997 1 year, 4 months ago

i hope wiggins does not read this blog because you idiots that call him a drama queen will surely steer him from becoming a jayhawk! thanks again.

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