Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Notebook: Wiggins hyped as top baller, brand

Kansas forward Andrew Wiggins laughs with his teammates on the bench during the Jayhawks' Late Night scrimmage, Friday, Oct. 4, 2013 at Allen Fieldhouse.

Kansas forward Andrew Wiggins laughs with his teammates on the bench during the Jayhawks' Late Night scrimmage, Friday, Oct. 4, 2013 at Allen Fieldhouse.


Kansas University freshman guard Andrew Wiggins is the No. 1-ranked college basketball player in the country entering the 2013-14 season, according to

Wiggins, 6-foot-8 from Vaughan, Ontario, Canada, beat out runner-up Marcus Smart of Oklahoma State in the website’s list of the country’s top 100 players, released on Tuesday.

“Wiggins is projected as the consensus No. 1 pick of next June’s NBA Draft. So he’s only spending one year in college. And, as you can see by this ranking, he’s expected to have a terrific season and maybe lead Kansas to a 10th-straight Big 12 title,” wrote’s Gary Parrish.

Creighton’s Doug McDermott is third, followed by Louisville’s Russ Smith, Kentucky’s Julius Randle, Duke’s Jabari Parker, Michigan State’s Gary Harris, Ohio State’s Aaron Craft, Arizona State’s Jahii Carson and Arizona’s Aaron Gordon.

KU’s Joel Embiid is 28th and Wayne Selden 31st.

Sneaker talk: KU’s Wiggins figures to be a rich man shortly after the end of the 2013-14 season. Bleacher Report writes Tuesday that as basketball’s next “chosen one,” Wiggins is ticketed to land a shoe contract in the vicinity of $140 to $180 million over 10 years. He can’t negotiate a deal, of course, until he declares for the NBA following his one-and-done season. As an amateur, he — as well as his family members — cannot negotiate with agents.

Bleacher Report says Adidas has “pegged Wiggins as their prime target and would be willing to open up the bank for him.”

Nike may or may not make an offer, considering it has lucrative deals with LeBron James, Kevin Durant and Kobe Bryant. Sports Business Daily says each of them earn between $10 and $20 million a year. Also, the company may not want to risk angering those players by making Wiggins its No. 1 client.

Bleacher Report says Chicago’s Derrick Rose has a 13-year deal with Adidas worth at least $185 million. Other companies likely to bid for Wiggins: Under Armour, which has Stephen Curry as a client; Li-Ning, which has Dwyane Wade; and Anta, which has Rajon Rondo.

Bleacher Report says, “interested companies will begin mocking up sneaker designs — and even prototypes — to present to Wiggins next spring, if he declares for the draft.”

The good news for KU is a source close to Wiggins’ family told Bleacher Report that his mom, Marita Payne-Wiggins, “has shut all the agents down” and won’t allow them to pitch their services.

Pokes’ coach pokes fun at Wiggins: The Oklahoman said OSU coach Travis Ford was “having some fun” when commenting on the highly hyped Wiggins this week.

“Kansas is still the favorite (in Big 12),” Ford said. “Wiggins is, from what I understand, the best player to ever play. I’ve seen him play and he’s really good. They’re still the No. 1 team and should be. They’ve got tons of talent, they’ve got depth, they’ve got the best player to ever play at Kansas and that’s a pretty good deal.”

Oubre tweets prospects:’s No. 12-ranked player in the Class of 2014, Kelly Oubre, who recently committed to KU, is hoping No. 1-ranked Jahlil Okafor and No. 5 Tyus Jones ultimately join him as Jayhawks next season.

He Tweeted “Bucket Team let’s get it,” at the duo on Oct. 10. Okafor and Jones will be making official visits to KU this weekend. They also have Duke, Baylor and Kentucky on their lists.

Vaughn postpones BU trip: No. 7 Rashad Vaughn, a 6-5 senior teammate of Oubre at Findlay Prep in Henderson, Nevada, is postponing a visit to Baylor this weekend, reports. Vaughn will make his first official visit to Iowa State on Nov. 17. He’ll visit UNLV on Nov. 25. He’s also planning trips to KU, Arizona and North Carolina with Minnesota still a possibility.

Withey mania: New Orleans Pelicans rookie center Jeff Withey has received some positive press since Sunday’s performance against Atlanta in which he scored six points with six rebounds and a block in 10 minutes. The New Orleans Times- Picayune says he out-performed starting center Greg Stiemsma and backup center/forward Arinze Onuaku, who combined to score four points.

“When I got on the floor I made the most of it and played like I know how,” former KU pivot Withey told the Times-Picayune.

“He’s still learning how to play in our system,” coach Monty Williams told the paper. “He wants to go help (defense) all the time. That can get you in trouble, especially if you come help from the wrong spot. But I liked his activity and I wished he could have finished that one dunk (he missed) when Brian (Roberts) missed a shot. Like most guys, he’s going to be up and down. He’s got to keep working and he does that.”

Rush not ready to go yet: Former KU wing Brandon Rush of the Utah Jazz will have his surgically-repaired knee re-evaluated on Oct. 26, the Deseret News reports. He was cleared for contact in September but has not yet been cleared for 5-on-5 scrimmaging.


Jonathan Allison 6 months, 1 week ago

I'm guessing that Jaybate's probably found it cathartic to scratch his ruminations onto parchment. If anyone finds where he's posting them then snap a photo and upload it to this comment section.


Denver Vold 6 months, 1 week ago

I cannot believe Jaybate could resist an article about a shoe company. We could look forward to at least 40 lines in three parts of truly informative insightful knowledge


Andrew Moore 6 months, 1 week ago

Is there going to be any video coverage of the scrimmage


Lance Cheney 6 months, 1 week ago

I'm not sure how to take Ford's comment. Maybe he's mocking the media's overhyping of Wiggins, which I would tend to agree with, especially considering that Wiggins hasn't exactly been blowing minds in practice, from what I've seen. Or maybe he is taking a jab at KU and KU fans, but also for the same reason. Regardless, we'll see what we got in another month or so, and we should have some epic matchups with OSU (and probably ISU) this year.


Adam Gerval 6 months, 1 week ago

I deleted my facebook account, let's see if this still works....


Lance Cheney 6 months, 1 week ago

"As an amateur, he — as well as his family members — cannot negotiate with agents."

What about AAU coaches and high school coaches? (Tongue in cheek)


Bryce Landon 6 months, 1 week ago

Wiggins need to be really careful about how he handles himself, especially as regards the shoe companies. One misstep, however unintentional, could result in the NCAA ruling him ineligible and vacating our season.


DaNeille Davis 6 months, 1 week ago

Okay, I find it absolutely ridiculous that a player receive so much hype and interest before playing one minute of college ball. How many players go into college with a lot of hype only to flop once they play with the big boys? How many go into the NBA with a lot of hype only to flop once they play with the really big boys? Most of them. Wiggins hasn't deserved all this hype yet. If by the end of the season he plays like they expect him to, then by all means, he will deserve all the attention. But until that time, give the boy a break and quit putting so much pressure on this "kid." Rock Chalk.


Steve Gantz 6 months, 1 week ago

When I saw Aaron Craft on that list I did a double take. He's still in college? Seems like he's been around a long time. As a Big 1G fan I've seen a lot of him over the years and while he doesn't fill a stat sheet like a lot of superstars what he offers in defense, more than makes up for it. He is an amazingly unique player, whom if he was playing at KU we'd all be falling head over heals in admiration of his skills.

I'm still taking a wait and see approach on Embiild and Seldon. People here have gone gaga over them, but based on what? It's mainly what others are saying about them rather than what they've seen. I surely hope the forecasts for them are correct as it means we're in for an amazing season.


Daniel Reinigungsmittel 6 months, 1 week ago

I have a hard time believing Aaron Craft is a top ten selection in a gym pickup game with 10 players, let alone in the NBA.


Aaron Paisley 6 months, 1 week ago

Sawed off is just being a tool like usual which what else would expect a Missouri/Kentucky guy to be towards Kansas. Wiggins will be just fine and if he puts up similar numbers to what Harrison Barnes did as a freshmen at UNC (16 ppg, 6 rpg) in Self's system, those will be very good numbers that should indicate KU is having a lot of success and that Ellis and likely Selden are also handling the majority of the scoring load.

Rashad Vaughn would be a great replacement for Selden if Selden does become OAD (I'd say about 80% right now) and that he's going to a late commitment means we'll know what the roster composition is shaping up to look like next year by the time Vaughn and Turner make their decisions. This is also a weird class in that there are 31 uncommitted players in the Rivals 150 right now and 8 of them are currently in their top 10. That means that about 80% of the Rivals 150 is already committed and I don't remember a year that large a % of the class was already committed by mid-October. There's not a lot of quality left out there should KU end up getting snubbed by a couple of their targets. Fortunately, this is also the one year where a couple of major recruiting misses won't diminish the on court product significantly, but would likely hurt Self's recruiting momentum from this past class. Should KU land 2 out of 3 between Alexander, Turner, and Vaughn, KU's class would be top 10 and likely top 5, and if Self manages to land all 3 (it's very possible), then KU would arguably have the top class with 4 players who are top 15 players and possibly top 10 when the final rankings come out next spring.

The other weird thing about this class is that Kelly Oubre is the only guy KU is/was recruiting very hard that Kentucky was even in the picture for which is evidence of how that NIT last year is already impacting Kentucky's recruiting this year and could be in the back of the minds of recruits in the 2015 class as well.


Jason Keller 6 months, 1 week ago

Travis Ford is a funny little midget. KU will not lose a game to Oklahoma State and you can take that to the bank. Ford has said way to much over the last year or so about KU basketball, he did his guys no favors. Playing them is going to be like playing K-State where no matter what we win.


Jack Wilson 6 months, 1 week ago

Seriously, the whole Wiggins-hype thing is out of control. The top player in the country before even stepping on the Court? Count me as one in the "I'll believe it when I see it" crowd. I'm not a Travis Ford fan, but his sarcasm was right on point.

To demonstrate the silliness of CBS's venture here, looking at the top 100 college players, does anyone really think that Joel Embiid at #28 will be a better college player this year than Perry Ellis, who is not even in the top 100?

Obvious question: Does the out of control Wiggins-hype help this team by deflecting attention, or does it cause subtle resentment?

My first impression is that it's likely not a negative because of the composition of our non-freshmen - Ellis has the personality that doesn't care (really humble and quiet), Tharpe isn't a star-type anyway, White didn't play last season much, and Black is an under the radar transfer. If Wiggins came in, for example, with last season's team, it might have been a mess.

Hopefully this stuff will dial down a bit.

Personally, I'm a lot more interested in the Frankamp/White/Greene battle and would rather hear about that, as opposed to hearing about how great Wiggins is all the time.


James Naismith 6 months, 1 week ago

Wiggins seems to have his head screwed on right. Hopefully he'll stay that way.


Chris Shaw 6 months, 1 week ago

I find the whole Li Ning brand associated with Dwayne Wade fascinating and intriguing. I saw yesterday that he he had a contract with this chinese brand,but it's still very interesting to me. I had no idea. I actually like the name Anta better that is associated with Rondo even though I despise Rondo.

I hope Wiggins doesn't struggle like Harrison Barnes did at UNC his freshman. College is a totally different game than the NBA. The NBA allows for more space and gaps to be creative with your moves and sometimes long gifted athletes like Harrison Barnes or potentially Wiggins can get bottled up with their "Space" in the college game. I think Lance Stephenson is another example of not doing well in college, his draft stock fell, but now he is flourishing.

IMO, the only way Wiggins becomes a Wilt Chamberlain or Danny Manning Legend at Kansas is if he puts up Kevin Durant like numbers and wins a championship. Although, I sure hope he puts up B-MAC numbers, hits a big shot and becomes Mario Legend.

I am really rooting for Withey. I think coach Monty Williams will find that Withey isn't flashy and you'll second guess his athleticism, but his length and the way he uses it is quite impressive.


6 months, 1 week ago

Tut, tut you are right young man. Best player ever here? Guffaw I say. When I recruited Wilt to come here I knew he would be the greatest ever. He could jump over Wiggins.


Michael Luby 6 months, 1 week ago

Not surprizing that Adidas offers Wiggs this much money? I think Jaybates theory about the NBA, big Shoe Co's and the AAU basketball circuit holds some water. Hopefully Jaybate is still lurking around here somewhere. This link to FB seems to be keeping a lot of bloggers away from this site. It seems also that FB has its hand a monopoly of sports and news websites now, with yahoo, cnn, bleacher report and now the ku getting linked. But I digress.

I like what OSU coach Ford said about Wiggs but I dont really think he is the best player at KU since forever with names like Chamberlain, Manning, Pierce hanging from the rafters.

One last thing. Go Withey!! and, Get back on the court soon Rush!

Rock Chalk


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