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Sunday, July 28, 2013

Mario Chalmers’ golf ‘coming along’

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In the past, Mario Chalmers has either hit the ceremonial tee shot — or asked his dad, Ronnie, to do the honors — at the National Championship Golf Classic, which today marks its fifth anniversary at Alvamar.

After the first hole, it has been cart-driving and socializing duties only for Miami Heat combo guard Chalmers, who has yet to fully embrace golf as a hobby.

“I’ve been taking golf lessons here and there, trying to work on my game so I can play in my own tournament,” said Chalmers, starting combo guard on Kansas University’s 2008 national championship team. “It’s coming along. I want to play next year. I want to put a team in and play the whole time next year.”

Chalmers hopes a good time is had by all today at his tourney, which, like Sunday’s VIP mixer, benefits the Mario V. Chalmers Foundation, Mario’s Closet (which provides low-cost accessories for cancer patients located at Lawrence Memorial Hospital) and the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Northeast Kansas, located in Topeka.

“We play golf, enjoy the weather, hang out,” Chalmers said. “All proceeds go to my foundation to help out breast cancer and youth initiatives. It’s a big weekend for me, a big event.”

Last week, Chalmers held a four-day camp for youths at Olathe East.

“Kids are the future. We are getting older each day,” said the 27-year-old Chalmers. “We’re not going to be here forever. We want to leave something for the kids, what they can remember us by, take from our lives as grown-ups and apply it to them.”

Russell doesn’t golf: Former KU guard Russell Robinson, who has returned to support Chalmers the past five summers, also won’t be golfing today.

“I’ve not picked that up yet. I’ll wait until I’m done playing basketball,” Robinson said with a laugh.

Recruiting: KU coaches were in the stands at the AAU Super Showcase on Friday in Orlando, Fla., watching prospects Kelly Oubre and Justise Winslow of Houston Hoops.

Winslow, 6-foot-5, 200-pound senior from Houston St. John’s, is ranked No. 16 in the Class of 2014 by Rivals.com. Oubre, 6-5, 200 senior, from Bush High in Richmond, Texas, is ranked No. 19.

“Oubre supplied the slashing offense that the Hoops needed, while Winslow did his best Ron Artest in his prime impression on four-star wing Devin Booker (of Alabama Challenge),” wrote Corey Albertson of Rivals.com. “Winslow face-guarded Booker on every possession, holding the high-scoring guard to just 14 points and making him work for every catch. On the other end, Oubre settled less for jumpers and attacked the rim more, playing with a more efficient pace in the halfcourt then he did in a televised game against Each-1-Teach-1 on Thursday night.”

Oubre and Winslow were also scouted by coaches from Florida, Kentucky, Duke, Stanford, Oregon, Michigan, Minnesota and others.

Jeter to visit: Chase Jeter, a 6-9 junior from Las Vegas’ Bishop Gorman High who is ranked No. 33 in the class of 2015, will make unofficial visits to KU, Indiana and Duke this fall, Rivals.com reports.

Okafor in Vegas: No. 1-ranked Jahlil Okafor, a 6-11, 280 senior from Chicago Whitney Young, played at a tourney in Las Vegas over the weekend.

“He doesn’t always put up huge scoring numbers, but the nation’s top player, Jahlil Okafor, is always solid around the rim and he’s always a beast on the glass,” wrote Eric Bossi of Rivals.com. “Making his last run with the Mac Irvin Fire, the 6-foot-11 center from Chicago (Ill.) Whitney Young took over for stretches on Saturday afternoon. Despite being double- and triple-teamed and clubbed without getting any calls, he kept plugging away and converting at the rim and out to about 10 feet. For such a big and strong kid, he’s nimble and he has learned to use spins and changes of direction along the baseline. Add how comfortable he is finishing with either hand and he almost always finds a way to convert.”

Summer league: KU junior guard Naadir Tharpe scored 19 points with four rebounds, while sophomore forward Jamari Traylor had 14 points and 12 rebounds in Dream Team’s loss to Code Black on Saturday in a Nike Chicago League game in the Windy City. Tharpe had five threes in the first half. Stats were provided by highschoolcube.com, which broadcasts games on its website.

Comments

Fortesque Beagleton 8 months, 3 weeks ago

I picked up golf a couple of years ago when I found out my new boss was an avid golfer. It is by far the most frustrating, maddening, and tortuous game/sports imaginable. Nothing about golf is natural. A naturally athletic person may be able to pick up a football or basketball and do relatively well in the sport with his natural athletic ability. Not so in golf. You see lots of current and former athletes in the golf pro-ams, but I've yet to ever see a professional athlete transition to professional golfing. Even Jordan, a huge golf lover and perhaps the most gifted athlete of his generation, could never make it as a golf pro.

For amateur golfers like myself (and Chalmers) it is next to impossible to make marked improvements in our game with a full time job and various personal commitments. All that said, there are the rare moments when you bomb a long drive right down the middle of the fairway or land one right next to the cup on a par three and suddenly it's all worth it. There are things pro basketball, baseball, and football players do that I will never be able to do. But at rare times when the stars align just right an amateur golfer can hit a shot that rivals one of Phil Mickelson's best, and it's when that happens that all the hair-pulling, cursing, blind-rage inducing madness seems worth it. If your real lucky it'll be on the 18th hole after your boss (who brags about his 6 handicap) sinks a double bogey.

Hope that Mario enjoys the game as much as I am learning to.

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jhawkinaz 8 months, 3 weeks ago

Ill read mario articles all day brother, keep them coming

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William Blake 8 months, 3 weeks ago

I wonder how it's going with Jerrance and Jahlil?

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Robert Brock 8 months, 3 weeks ago

Forget about KU landing Winslow. Ain't happnin. As a consolation, KU will get a commitment from Oubre (probably sooner rather than later).

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KEITHMILES05 8 months, 3 weeks ago

Can we please stop these Chalmers articles? Nothing like pumping sunshine for the almighty dollar and reliving 2008 championship game. It's over. Time to move on with the current team members. The past can only be talked of so many times.

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sydhawk 8 months, 3 weeks ago

I saw Winslow and Okafor (and many others) earlier this month in the FIBA under-19 hoops championship in Prague. Team USA was stacked, but those two guys stood out -- exactly the types of players we want at KU.

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Hawk8086 8 months, 3 weeks ago

Nulea, So, when is your next Tee time?

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nuleafjhawk 8 months, 3 weeks ago

Mario - listen to Russ Robb. Forget about golf until basketball is over. Then forget about it some more.

It is an evil mistress. It will mess with your mind, your body and your spirit. You will hit what should have been 280 yard drives approximately 4 inches from the tee. You will learn that a 2 iron is only good for reaching into deep brush and retrieving your "lucky" pinnacle pink lady ball. If you stick with it long enough, you will eventually break windows out of million dollar houses. You will hit errant shots and strike other golfers in the groin. You will also be struck with errant shots by other golfers. Numerous times.

You will learn that, when you reach into the edge of a water hazard to retrieve your ball, sticks and snakes look an awful lot alike.

Take up fishing instead. Take a cooler full of beer, a radio and hope the fish don't bother you.

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jaybate 8 months, 3 weeks ago

Justise Winslow: welcome to Lawrence, KS, a D1 defenders equivalent of a hero's quest for enlightenment at a Buddhist monastery in Tibet. The Dalai Lama of Defense is Bill Self. The monastery is Allen Field House.

The beauty of locking down walks a razor's edge between fury and control, between reaction and anticipation, between muscle and motion, between swagger and humility, between mind and body.

In defensive basketball, enlightenment is not found in the Himalayas, but on the Great Plains, not on snowy peaks but in an ocean of grass and a sea of wheat.

The mantra freeing mind is: defense is offense.

The body freeing exercise is the slide.

There is a high priestess of muscle. Her name is Dr. Hudy.

There are three gurus of getting better: Kurtis, Norm and Jerrance.

The scholarship makes it free to live at the monastery, if you can find the way, but the enlightenment...It costs not less than everything.

You will hear it before you see it

You will see it before you feel it.

You will feel it before you know it.

It is not for all who seek it.

But it is for all that find it.

The brothers and sisters there will say, Rock Chalk.

When you hear them, it starts.

When you leave them, it continues.

Rock Chalk!

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Preston Dwiggins 8 months, 3 weeks ago

Glad to hear the good news on Tharpe and Traylor playing well in ChiTown. I hope Tharpe is working equally hard on his alley oop skills. Not sure how Coach Self is going to get all these guys like Traylor minutes; he's deserving. Chalmer's needs a hole-in-one to go along with his other accolades.

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