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Tuesday, April 1, 2014

KU signee Cliff Alexander in no rush to go pro

Kansas University signee Cliff Alexander, who will play in the McDonald’s All-American Game Wednesday, says he hasn’t made up his mind about a one-and-done college season.

Kansas University signee Cliff Alexander, who will play in the McDonald’s All-American Game Wednesday, says he hasn’t made up his mind about a one-and-done college season.

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— Even before he ceremoniously grabbed an Illinois hat off a table, then dropped it and declared himself a Jayhawk, Cliff Alexander spoke openly about his one-and-done intention to help his family financially.

On the same day Kansas University freshman Andrew Wiggins declared himself eligible for the NBA Draft, the next big thing changed his tune following McDonald’s All-American Games practice Monday morning.

“I wouldn’t mind staying two years,” Alexander said. “Stay and get better. I’ve been talking to my parents about it. Some guys leave, and they aren’t ready. They rush in, and they’re rushed out. I just want to take my time.”

Four years of college might not be long enough to equal the number of highs and lows the 6-foot-8 power forward experienced in his senior season at Chicago’s Curie Metropolitan High.

It started with the hat-fake that thrilled Kansas but enraged Illini faithful, and the negativity continued in Curie’s first game.

Two technical fouls — the second for hanging on the rim in traffic — triggered an automatic one-game suspension which received a lot of attention because Curie’s next game was an out-of-state showcase.

Alexander then turned the criticism into praise with his spectacular play.

A dunk machine who impacts the game on both ends of the floor, Alexander led Curie to its first title at the prestigious Pontiac Holiday Tournament, its first No. 1 ranking in the Chicago Tribune and the Chicago Sun-Times and an ESPNU-televised victory over the nation’s top team, Montverde Academy (Fla.).

Curie also beat four-time defending Illinois state champion Simeon twice and outlasted Young, led by Duke-bound center Jahlil Okafor, in four overtimes to win its first Chicago Public League championship.

Alexander averaged 24 points, 15 rebounds and six assists and was named Chicago Sun-Times Player of the Year over Okafor, who garnered the Illinois Mr. Basketball and McDonald’s National Player of the Year awards.

The only game Curie lost heading into the state tournament was the one in which Alexander did not play, yet the record will forever show a 0-26 season.

Three days before the start of the state tournament, a Chicago Public Schools investigation revealed that several Curie players — Alexander not among them — had been academically ineligible all season.

Curie had to forfeit 24 victories and the city championship, but because the Illinois High School Association has different eligibility standards, the Condors were allowed to participate in the state tournament.

The roller coaster came to an abrupt and dramatic end as Curie blew a 15-point third-quarter lead and was upended by DuSable at the overtime buzzer, 88-85, in the biggest postseason upset Chicago has witnessed in years.

A devastated Alexander collapsed to the floor, hid his face in his jersey and had to be helped off by his parents.

“I’m over it now,” he said. “It took me like two weeks to get over it, but I’m over it now. It was amazing how our team came out and played this year. It was crazy how we were doing so good and it came to an end so quick. I’ve got to grow from it one step at a time.

Alexander was not aware Wiggins’ announcement was expected later in the day, and he greeted the news with indifference.

Wiggins and Alexander did not really establish a rapport during Big Cliff’s visits to Lawrence, Alexander said, but Alexander and Joel Embiid did.

Alexander said he has talked to Embiid about his looming decision whether to enter the NBA Draft. Like Wiggins, Embiid is projected as a high lottery pick.

“I talk to JoJo sometimes,” Alexander said. “He said he hasn’t made up his mind. I told him to do what’s best for him. Hopefully he stays. I think nobody could stop us next year if he does.”

Comments

Ian Emerson 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Correct. If point guard play does indeed stabilize and jojo does infact return we would be favored to cut down THE nets.

1

Robert Brown 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Here we go again. Aren't we usually among the favorites to cut down the nets?

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Jonathan Allison 5 months, 3 weeks ago

I've been on this website for the past 7 years and we've favored to cut down the nets every year. ;)

2

Marc Frey 5 months, 3 weeks ago

And that what make following this program gives us highs and lows. And makes me appreciate that we are NOT Missery, who hopes for a .500 season.

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Greg Lux 5 months, 3 weeks ago

And I want to be in that position every year from now on also.

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Rob Bedford III 5 months, 3 weeks ago

I think Kentucky and a couple other schools will disagree with that comment.

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Ethan Berger 5 months, 3 weeks ago

All depends on who UK returns. Could lose 7 guys, could lose 1.

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Rob Bedford III 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Jabari Parker staying at Duke would make them a favorite.

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Ian Emerson 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Yall need to cut me some slack please. The only time we were unanimously favored to win in recent memory was the 2009-2010 season. Other then that we have simply been in the mix of possible title contenders but not favored to be the front runners.

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Rich Hetherington 5 months, 3 weeks ago

I feel you there, and honestly, I agree with you. If Embiid returns, I think Kansas WILL be the favorite to win it... at least from a large contingency of experts and commentators. We already know Jayhawk nation will be thinking it, and fans of Duke, Kentucky and other high profile programs won't be, at least at 1st. :)

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Kent Kossoy 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Favored in 07-08 when Rush announced he was staying. And we did win. Thanks to Memphis" excellent clutch FT shooting.

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Steve Zimmerman 5 months, 3 weeks ago

“I wouldn’t mind staying two years,”.... didn't you hear him say "NOT" at the end? :) Don't worry about it, Cliff, let's see if you guys can really cut down the net first, then i'll be interested in hearing your announcement.

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Reggie Flenory 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Yeah thats what he says now but we have heard this story b4 wait till his "DRAFT STOCK" rises then suddenly he will be "GATHERING INFORMATION" i.e (looking for an agent) like some one else we know (fill in the blank) __

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Benz Junque 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Let's be honest, if Embiid stays then Alexander is probably coming off the bench behind Embiid and Ellis and Alexander is probably smart enough to realize that. If that happens then Alexander will need to stay another year to get the starting spot once Embiid leaves so he can really improve and grow and showcase his abilities.

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Dylan Geiger 5 months, 3 weeks ago

More likely Ellis will be coming off the bench behind Cliff.

1

Mark Lindrud 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Either way he sounds coachable and will work hard to improve. If Joel stays or we get Turner I'm wondering if Ellis moves to SF, which he's hinted at. Then Alexander is our starting PF.

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Brandon Mahon 5 months, 3 weeks ago

There isn't any room for Ellis at SF, unless Ellis's speed picks up drastically and his shot continues to get better from the outside then MAYBE... but with Oubre coming in and having Selden, Greene, AW3 i just don't see him moving out to the 3 spot. His ball handling isn't bad but needs to get better, but the main focus for him will be defense, speed, and an outside shot to extend the defense.

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Aaron Paisley 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Ellis just needs to nut up and play like a man. He has the quickness to defend the 4 with ease, he just doesn't have the toughness to defend the 4.

3

Mark Lindrud 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Greene and Selden are 2 guards and Selden maybe a potential PG. We don't know if AW will be here next year. If Ellis works on his game then maybe he will be ready to be the 3 or a hybrid.

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Aaron Paisley 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Brannen Greene is a 3 who almost exclusively played when Wiggins was on the bench. Wayne Selden is a 2, but did play some 3 when KU went with a small ball line up. Perry Ellis is a stretch 4, that is the hybrid, but he does not have the quickness to defend the 3 on the perimeter. He showed that multiple times this season when he would switch to guarding a smaller player off a screen and repeatedly got beat by the smaller guy. Ellis needs to toughen up and work on his range and then he could be a great college player instead of just a good one.

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Mark Lindrud 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Ellis has said before that he is better suited for a 3 in the pros and his outside game is starting to improve. I see Greene more as a 2 than a 3. Many guys didn't play their natural positions at times this year. Let's face it Traylor isn't a center, but he played it and at times did a decent job. Frankamp is more suited to be a 2, but his height is a limitation for him so in the case of Ellis if he can work on his outside game he can switch to the 3 on occasion. Like anything, it is about matchups for many of these players.

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Jim Jackson 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Thought it was interesting that him and Wiggs never really talked. Goes to show, Wiggs has been eyeing the league a long time, not that it's a surprise.

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Brandon Mahon 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Alexander sounds like a good kid with a good head on his shoulders. He said self is going to turn him into one of the twins, and they took 2/3 years to become as good of players that they are now. Alexander is physical specimen and with a couple years will refine his game. Oubre and Alexander both have hinted at not being OADs. Oubre said he would not mind staying 3 even maybe four years wants to get his degree and get as ready for the league as possible. I know its nice to hear now but we will just have to wait and see how these guys seasons go and what transpires over the next year or more. But, if we could keep these guys around a couple years and keep Embiid next year, and have Selden, Greene, Mason, Frankamp, Traylor, Mickelson, AW3 (hopefully) and whatever recruits we get the next few years already has me excited for the future. IN BILL WE TRUST! RCJH

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Jonathan Allison 5 months, 3 weeks ago

I'm looking at this gentleman's photo and dreaming of what Hudy could do with him if he gave her two years.

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Suzi Marshall 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Thank you LJW for posting this article. It helps to get over the end of our season and looking forward to next year.

What will Kansas fans call Alexander? Big Cliff, as he is currently goes by, or Alexander the Great, as we all want him to be. He is the high motor force in the paint we all want. But at 6'8" and Embiid/Turner at 7'0", might we see Alexander at the 5 and Embiid/Turner at the 4? If we do have an Embiid/Turner option, either will start obviously and I don't see Alexander coming off the bench.

Ellis will need to get quicker and learn to play the 3 or get a lot tougher fast. Ellis would be in a major battle with Greene for the 3 spot. I'm not expecting Oubre to start for us because of his undeveloped defensive skills and inability to go right.

Curie vs DuSable in the IL State Championship was a bit like us playing Stanford. Curie's two best perimeter players (the Stamp brothers) remained ineligible for State. When DuSable pressed, Curie fell apart. Okafor earned the Tribune POY because Young won State and Alexander was not around to stop them, as he did in the CPL city championship.

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Joe Baker 5 months, 3 weeks ago

It's great to dream and your scenario could work. But, will Turner want to share with Embiid and Alex? Who will transfer to free the extra paper? Your threesome is a great one, but one that would require some huge orchestration on Self's part.

Someone on the board gave a little scenario between Self and Lucas at season's end. I think that someone could be AW3. I love AW3, but it's all about the long run. It's being nice versus necessary. It's the difference between repeating a dismal season and getting the pieces that will provide you with a NC. I guarantee you HCBS hates to lose and will get the necessary personnel at all costs. Hunter and Lucas have all RS seasons. But if I were Hunter, I'd be prepared to enjoy a season of cleanup and an even bigger chance at a NC. Lucas is in the same boat. Just be prepared to ride the pine and enjoy the cleanup crew. The patience will pay off with a NC. We need a pg to complete the NC dream team.

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Suzi Marshall 5 months, 3 weeks ago

No way do I expect we will have both Embiid and Turner. By Embiid/Turner, I mean that as a single entity, one or the other.

I am sure Self is scouring the basketball universe for a PG that can play immediately. However, Self loves Mason, who showed incredible improvement as the season progressed, although he has a lot of work to do with his J. Nevertheless, if there is a Kane out there, Self will surely find him and do all that is legally possible to sign him.

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Joe Baker 5 months, 3 weeks ago

He will have to be one special pg to come in this late, but again, the paper will have to be available. Someone will have to get the proverbial "ax." You can almost list the potential candidates:

Tharpe? Just moved into the lead with that stupid pic.

AW3? I love this kid and wish nothing but the best.

Mason? Unlikely, but slightly possible...it depends on if a highly rated pg impacts immediately and one that Self may pull out of the hat. I just believe that if Self was looking for a pg, it would've been Lyle.

CF? Highly unlikely

Don't see any of the bigs going anywhere. Self loves his bigs. He thrives on having a plethora of bigs when needed.

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Mark Lindrud 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Incredible improvement by Mason? He drives, he drives, he drives and in case that doesn't work he drives. Frankamp became the backup PG with the minutes taking over for Mason so I would not say it was an incredible improvement by any stretch. If we cannot bring in a PG I would like to see Selden get some opportunities to see what he can do in case Tharpe keeps regressing because 6'0 and under PG's aren't going to cut it when one only likes to drive and the other one who is a steady addition isn't that quick and can be a defensive liability.

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Suzi Marshall 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Mason did a much better job of drawing the d on his drives and finding the open man. Self loves the guy.

I'm with you 100% and would love to see Selden get a chance with the 1. Selden is a leader.

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Luca Rossi 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Everything coming from the Cliff Alexander camp sounds great so far, think this kid is going to be a great addition to KU nation and be one of our best to come through here, especially if he stays multiple years.

Good question about the nicknames, throw out your ideas...

  • Big Cliff
  • Cliff Hanger
  • Alexander the Great
  • Thunder from Down Under
  • Cliftimus Prime
  • The Block-Ness Monster

Help me out guys, anyone think of anymore??

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Erich Hartmann 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Regarding our opponents next season: Let's go Cliff 'Em all!

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Joe Baker 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Alexander said he has talked to Embiid about his looming decision whether to enter the NBA Draft. Like Wiggins, Embiid is projected as a high lottery pick.

“I talk to JoJo sometimes,” Alexander said. “He said he hasn’t made up his mind. I told him to do what’s best for him. Hopefully he stays. I think nobody could stop us next year if he does.”

Oh snap...I'm getting giddy. Embiid + Alex? The two are completely and utterly dominate. I'd be skeered if I were KU's competition. These two will absolutely wreak havoc. Joel, do what is best, but think of what you two could do down low, yikes...I quiver with fear.

I'm impressed. This kid's maturity and wisdom are unbelieveable. His thought process and reasoning are exceptional. He is clearly thinking of what is best in the long run. Like many, he sees the immediate need, but also understands how to thrive in the long run, it's what you do now that will make the biggest difference. Stay focused Alex and your patience will be rewarded. It's all about reaping and sowing. What you sow, you will reap. It's a fact.

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Steve Yeakel 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Dear Coach Self - you are the best, I definitely want you as KU Coach for Life. Please, please, please find us the best point guard available to sign for next year, be it junior college or wherever, and then continue to make it your highest priority each year that we have a succession of very good point guards. That is what it takes to go all the way. I am so thankful that we have you as our coach!

2

Ethan Berger 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Don't give up on Mason or Frankamp. We should be encouraged by how much Mason played year 1 and how Frankamp ended the year.

2

Mark Lindrud 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Mason needs to develop a shot and learn to control his drives for next year and Frankamp is weak on defense because he isn't quick. His style of play is almost better suited for the 2. I still want a transfer PG because of the limitations both present.

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Jerrad Jury 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Conner could handle the point. I Do agree that he has limitations on defense. However, anytime he ran the point this year our team seemed to run much more efficiently and not to mention he didn't turn the ball over a lot such as mason and Tharpe. With Conners ability to shoot, playing alongside Selden, Alexander, (wishful thinking) but Embiid and Oubre. If we hit lottery and land Myles turner than wow. But to finish my statement, with all the double teams and attention in post on Embiid or turner, Ellis and Alexander, leaves a lot of options for spot up threes on kick outs to Conner. We would be so much more efficient. I'm over Tharpe and I love the "brick" Mason! Just needs to work on that outside shot and if he does, he will start IMO. Although we all know Bill is loyal to his upper-class man so "NA-deer in the headlights" Tharpe will get his starting job and average about 5-10 turnovers per game. Really hoping Bill will change his ways on this loyal to juniors and seniors crap and play the person who gives us the best chance to win. I love the guy and wouldn't take anyone else as our coach but he has costed us some tourney games a la the vcu and northern Iowa years, both years we should have won the title IMO. '10 $ '11. Conference titles are nice, especially 10 straight, but I'm selfish and I want national tiles, not conference. A mistake by calipari(despise the man) on not fouling in '08 title game on that last possession, and a couple missed free throws and without Mario's miracle it would really make people look at self differently. Too many tournament losses that ae mind boggling. I'm not going to even mention those other tourney losses, actually I will, Bradley and Bucknell also. Stanford this year, Michigan last year. Without a doubt, best REGULAR SEASON coach in the business but his resume in the tourney, minus '08 title year, would be seriously questioned. Hope he can realize this and he is 100x smarter basketball mind than I. However, I am still mad about how he waited until 34 seconds to play frankamp and I do believe if he were brought in at 5 min mark or even 3 min left when we were in desperate trouble, we would still be playing! If I was Andrew white, landen Lucas, and Conner if he not playing 15-20+ minutes a game next year, I would seriously consider transferring!

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Jerrad Jury 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Conner could handle the point. I Do agree that he has limitations on defense. However, anytime he ran the point this year our team seemed to run much more efficiently and not to mention he didn't turn the ball over a lot such as mason and Tharpe. With Conners ability to shoot, playing alongside Selden, Alexander, (wishful thinking) but Embiid and Oubre. If we hit lottery and land Myles turner than wow. But to finish my statement, with all the double teams and attention in post on Embiid or turner, Ellis and Alexander, leaves a lot of options for spot up threes on kick outs to Conner. We would be so much more efficient. I'm over Tharpe and I love the "brick" Mason! Just needs to work on that outside shot and if he does, he will start IMO. Although we all know Bill is loyal to his upper-class man so "NA-deer in the headlights" Tharpe will get his starting job and average about 5-10 turnovers per game. Really hoping Bill will change his ways on this loyal to juniors and seniors crap and play the person who gives us the best chance to win. I love the guy and wouldn't take anyone else as our coach but he has costed us some tourney games a la the vcu and northern Iowa years, both years we should have won the title IMO. '10 $ '11. Conference titles are nice, especially 10 straight, but I'm selfish and I want national tiles, not conference. A mistake by calipari(despise the man) on not fouling in '08 title game on that last possession, and a couple missed free throws and without Mario's miracle it would really make people look at self differently. Too many tournament losses that ae mind boggling. I'm not going to even mention those other tourney losses, actually I will, Bradley and Bucknell also. Stanford this year, Michigan last year. Without a doubt, best REGULAR SEASON coach in the business but his resume in the tourney, minus '08 title year, would be seriously questioned. Hope he can realize this and he is 100x smarter basketball mind than I. However, I am still mad about how he waited until 34 seconds to play frankamp and I do believe if he were brought in at 5 min mark or even 3 min left when we were in desperate trouble, we would still be playing! If I was Andrew white, landen Lucas, and Conner if he not playing 15-20+ minutes a game next year, I would seriously consider transferring!

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Ethan Berger 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Possible line up next year

5 Embiid 4 Alexander 3 Oubre 2 Selden 1 Mason

Off the Bench Traylor, Lucas, Tharpe, Greene, Frankamp

That is preseason ranking number 1. Hopefully Coach picks the best to play and not the oldest. Tharpe has been spiriling as of the past month or so. Wonder what his future holds.

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Jay Beakum 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Uh, you left out our second leading scorer...

That’s okay, nothing bothers Perry.

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Ethan Berger 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Dangit, never type something like this right after waking up.

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Tony Bandle 5 months, 3 weeks ago

You just woke up!!?????...must have been one hell of a Monday night party!! :)

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Glen Miller 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Turner will not come to Kansas if Embiid stays. That's been well documented. Coach Self himself has been quoted as saying that he told Turner to go somewhere else if Embiid comes back. The reason being that Turner should start and he won't if he's got Embiid in front of him.

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Aaron Paisley 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Turner likely will not start if he comes to KU. Alexander and Ellis are more likely to be the starters and Turner would likely be the first big off the bench.

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Jerrad Jury 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Neither Ellis or Alexander play the 5 and are both undersized to do so at 6'9" & 6'8". Self told the turners that it would be in his best interest to look elsewhere if jojo stays due to playing time etc. however, Turner said he loved that self was so honest and really was attracted to him bc he really cares and how he was honest and that he could see himself at ku even if Embiid stays! I doubt he would come If jojo stays but either way, we need a center!

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Tom McPhillips 5 months, 3 weeks ago

It would be nice to have a real team again and not a collection of NBA "minor-league" players. Thats what made watching the Shockers so much fun this year but what made it so hard, at times, to watch the Jayhawks. I just never got the sense this year that the players had bought into the team concept. They undoubtedly had an abundance of talent but it didnt seem to help much in tournament play.

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Luca Rossi 5 months, 3 weeks ago

I wish the site had a thumbs down option too, this would be a great time to click it...

Some fans just don't get it.

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Cody Dunlap 5 months, 3 weeks ago

The difference between KU and WSU is that, up until 2 years ago, they could not recruit that OAD talent. They're all juniors and seniors because playing professional basketball is not an option.

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Jerrad Jury 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Not sure if you talking abut ku or wsu when you say that until 2 years ago they couldn't get OAD's! If you referring to wsu then u are misinformed. We have one player in last 10+ years that was ranked 130 or lower in Espn 150, which is Fred Van Fleet, who is by far and away better than any pg on KU's roster. I am rom Lawrence an huge ku fan but attended wsu. We get players that are not as hyped and jr college stars, like Cleanthony Early, who also is more complete player than wiggins and or Ellis. Van Fleet and Early will be drafted into NBA and what you don't know is that a lot of wsu players are playing professionally just not in the NBA! Our program has been on the rest since I arrived in wichita in '05 and we reached the sweet 16 and upset a loaded uconn team, full of nba stars. Followed that up with #8 national ranking. KU's own mark Turgeon was our coach and left for A&M, now at Maryland. We hired Gregg Marshall and it took couple years to get his system going but a final four loss to the champion Louisville team, who we should have beat considering we had them down by 14, similar to how we should have finished off Kentucky this year. We went 35-1 this year, #1 seed in tourney! Maybe KU and K State will play them but I can't blame them to not wanting to get beat. This years wsu team would have beat ku and if ku would have played like a team as did wsu, then hey still be playing, especially if Fred van fleet were the starting pg.

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Mick Allen 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Has Kentucky's 5 freshman NBA minor leaguers bought into the team concept Tom? I would say that they have. My point is obviously you can be quite successful with an abundance of NBA minor leaguers. You must continue to recruit the one and doners as HCBS continues to do. To quote Bob Dylan, "the times they are a changing" Ideally you start 2 or 3 one and done and surround them with accomplished veterans

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Suzi Marshall 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Cal has earned his pay bringing that crew together as a team.

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Michael Pannacciulli 5 months, 3 weeks ago

I watched the dunk contest last night which featured both Alexander and Oubre. What stood out to me more than their physical talent was Alexanders enthusiasm. He was pumping guys upbefore and after dunks, cheering, going up to his friends and bear hugging them after a dunk...literally making his presence known in a positive way without the ball in his hands. I was reminded of TRob. This years team seemed to be lacking a guy like that. A big, boisterous, powerful, passionate presence - night in and night out. Cant wait. I also think that Hudy will carve those dudes up.

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Len Shaffer 5 months, 3 weeks ago

I think Traylor was pretty good at energizing the team, but perhaps you're talking about someone who also was a starter or one of the best players? I could see Traylor being really good next year.

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Michael Pannacciulli 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Good point. Id like to see him really emerge as a true leader and get more serious PT. He can change a game in the way DJack did in '08. His energy off the bench bailed us out many times.

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Robert Brown 5 months, 3 weeks ago

I certainly understand Tom's point regarding OAD. This season was not fun to watch. We did see a bit of a step change once conference season started, but there was little or no improvement from mid-January to the end of the season. I would have expected more improvement with a young team. I don't mean this to be disparaging, but Kentucky is improving at the end of the year.

As a fan, it is nice watch a player grow and develop. That is missing with OAD. All the best to players like Wiggins and Henry, but KU was just a temporary stop for them and they would never have come here or anywhere else if the NBA had difference drafting rules.

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Aaron Paisley 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Kentucky's PG play got better down the stretch and KU's got worse. That is the difference between the two this year and not KU's freshmen failing to get better because they all did as the year went on.

1

Tony Bandle 5 months, 3 weeks ago

I've noticed, no one holds press conferences on April Fools Day....I guess everyone is afraid no one will believe them!!

Body type- wise, Cliff Alexander makes Julius Randle look like Heidi.

C'mon..Cliff is at the very least, the number 4 recruit in the class of '14....nickname, Cliff OAlexanDer.

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Adam James 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Just a few thoughts after reading comments and thinking about the NCAA Tournament & KU Hoops. Oak- I'm not trying to take down your Oddities 1. The Harrison twins were garbage all season and now that they are in the Final Four the "experts" think they are NBA ready. Takeaway: If you do well in March as a coach or player you are a rock star
2. Alexander is no doubt going to be a beast for us, but we will have trouble if he is on the court defending a stretch 4 or 5. This is where Perry will be most valuable. Takeaway: We will have a team next year that can play fast/slow/big/small and anything else you can think of. 3. Your strength of schedule has nothing to do with how prepared you will be for NCAA's In fact I think it hurts you when you have a young team cause you can't play and see guys in game action. Takeaway: Schedule middle to bottom of the pack teams in non-con and leave room for opportunity to see guys on the floor.

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Erich Hartmann 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Good points. Only thing about Alexander "guarding" a stretch 4, is that Ellis had trouble doing it too. We need more high-motor, above-rim athletes. Maybe Alexander can defend BETTER than Ellis? Also, the fact Traylor could go 18pts and 15rbs in a Tournament game (vs EKY), tells me he also may "push" Ellis next season with a bit more work on his shot & defense, in addition to BigCliff pushing Ellis in his own way.

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Joe Baker 5 months, 3 weeks ago

I'm going to make a prediction and may be wrong. But, if Embiid or Turner is here, I think Alex may take the majority of Ellis' minutes. Ellis is really soft and struggles to be aggressive. If he makes an aggressive move, he tends to miss. I think Alex is going to be a much better finisher in the paint play for play. I see Ellis starting the first half, a bit like Embiid and Black. I see Alex starting the second half over Ellis. Ellis will have to prove himself or Alex will take his minutes. Self may work Ellis another way.

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Erich Hartmann 5 months, 3 weeks ago

Somebody warn Travis Ford and Scot Drew about bringing any high-flyers into AFH...they'll get their wings Cliff'd...

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