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Originally published April 15, 2014 at 09:02p.m., updated April 16, 2014 at 12:25a.m.

Wiggins honored with ‘Mr. Jayhawk’ award at postseason banquet

One-and-done freshmen Andrew Wiggins, left, and Joel Embiid share a laugh during the Kansas University men’s basketball postseason awards banquet Tuesday, April 15, 2014, at the Lawrence Holiday Inn. Wiggins, who was given the Danny Manning “Mr. Jayhawk” Award, and Embiid declared for this summer’s NBA Draft after one season at KU.

One-and-done freshmen Andrew Wiggins, left, and Joel Embiid share a laugh during the Kansas University men’s basketball postseason awards banquet Tuesday, April 15, 2014, at the Lawrence Holiday Inn. Wiggins, who was given the Danny Manning “Mr. Jayhawk” Award, and Embiid declared for this summer’s NBA Draft after one season at KU.

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photo

Ryan Waggoner/Special to the Journal-World

Kansas University men’s basketball coach Bill Self, left, congratulates freshman guard Andrew Wiggins during the Jayhawks’ postseason awards banquet Tuesday, April 15, 2014, at the Lawrence Holiday Inn. Wiggins received the 2014 Danny Manning “Mr. Jayhawk” Award after leading KU’s Big 12 championship team in scoring during his one-and-done season.

photo

Ryan Waggoner/Special to the Journal-World

Kansas University men's basketball coach Bill Self signs a basketball for a fan after the Jayhawks' postseason awards banquet, Tuesday, April 15, 2014, at the Lawrence Holiday Inn.

Kansas University freshman guard Andrew Wiggins was named winner of the 2014 Danny Manning “Mr. Jayhawk” Award, for contributions on and off the court, at the conclusion of Tuesday night’s postseason awards banquet held before 660 fans at the Lawrence Holiday Inn.

“I think you could make a case for Wayne (Selden), Perry (Ellis), Tarik (Black), but when you really break it down, he’s the best player on a Big 12 championship team that has probably brought as much exposure to this school in a positive way as anybody ever has,” KU coach Bill Self said.

“He’ll win a lot of awards moving forward (in NBA). Hopefully this is one he’ll always remember.”

Wiggins, who confirmed he has signed with agent Bill Duffy, felt “blessed to receive this honor.”

“It’s an amazing award. I’m honored to get it amongst the names (who won in past) and the legacy of Danny Manning,” Wiggins said.

Embiid has nice suit: KU freshman Joel Embiid confirmed he has signed with agent Arn Tellem of Wasserman Group. Self kidded Embiid about the expensive suit Embiid purchased on a recent trip to Los Angeles.

“I was trying to say the suit I got from KU (student assistance fund) wasn’t long enough,” Embiid said with a smile.

Embiid said he enjoyed reliving memories of his one-and-done season.

“I was just watching the (season highlight) video earlier. I wish I could come back, but it’s too late right now,” Embiid said.

Selden has procedure: KU freshman guard Wayne Selden had a “very minor” surgical procedure on his left knee at the conclusion of the season, Self reported Tuesday.

“He was playing on a bad wheel all year,” Self said. “He’ll be fine going into the summer, 100 percent. I think we’ll see him become even more explosive.”

Self said Selden hurt the knee at the “beginning of the year, one of those nagging things you have to deal with. He never complained once. You could tell he didn’t have the same pop as he did in August and September.”

Self said Selden would probably be held out of contact drills and pick-up games for “a week or two.”

Ellis returning: Self asked sophomore Perry Ellis during the banquet if he was returning or entering the NBA Draft.

“Perry are you coming back?” Self said.

“Yes,” Ellis responded.

Self indicated Ellis has been getting a lot of social-media questions about his future and wanted to clear it up at the banquet.

Tharpe in Massachusetts for funeral: KU junior Naadir Tharpe did not attend. His grandfather died Thursday in Massachusetts, and memorial services are today, Self said. Tharpe will be back in Lawrence tonight.

“He’s had an interesting offseason,” Self acknowledged of Tharpe getting in trouble for having a risqué picture posted on social media. “But he is not here because of that (death in family). He said one of his biggest regrets is not being able to be with you (fans) tonight.”

No Portsmouth: Senior Tarik Black is skipping the Portsmouth Invitational for NBA prospects after spraining an ankle. “I’m not 100 percent. I’ll start preparing (soon) for individual team workouts,” Black said. He indicated he’s being represented by Mike Lelchitski of Sports International Group, Inc., in Washington, D.C.

Mickelson a force: Self spoke on the progress of transfer Hunter Mickelson, a 6-foot-10, 245-pound junior-to-be from the University of Arkansas who will be eligible to play in games next season. “He can shoot the ball,” Self said. “He can score. He’s good. Any time you have a tall guy who can shoot, it’s hard for guys (defenders) to deal with. We’re excited to have him.”

Coursework finished: Self said Wiggins and Embiid have completed their coursework for the semester. “They have fulfilled their academic responsibilities by today,” he said. “If they decide to stay the rest of the semester, that’s great. If their agent says they want ’em to go to California to work out, that’s great. We know we’ve got that covered so that won’t impact our APR.”

Eat up, athletes: The NCAA passed a rule Tuesday allowing schools to pay for all athletes’ meals.

“Kids can eat $20 worth of food everywhere they go. For us to remove that from the situation (scholarship checks) will be a good thing,” Self said.

Pro football?: Senior Justin Wesley is considering playing pro football in Australia. “He got an e-mail saying, ‘I hear you can jump and all that. Would you consider doing this football deal?’” Self said. “He (Wesley) said it’s about winning possessions (to start the match). They throw the ball up, and you jump for the possession. I told Justin, ‘If they pay what you say they are going to pay, move to Australia.’”

Not finished yet: Self said KU could still sign one or two players in recruiting. The Jayhawks are in the running for Myles Turner, 6-foot-11 from Euless, Texas, and Devonte Graham, 6-2 out of Raleigh, N.C. Graham announced he’s down to KU, Providence, North Carolina State, Virginia and Virginia Tech.

Of next year’s team, which already includes newcomers Cliff Alexander and Kelly Oubre, Self said: “We have enough players to make a run next year.”

He said the team could be better than this year’s “if things fall right.”

Comments

Suzi Marshall 8 months, 1 week ago

Wiggins and Embiid look like a million dollars in that picture... or perhaps several million.

I heard from friends that AWIII is saying he plans to return to Kansas. I'm really happy to hear that because AWIII is a class act who works hard on the court and represents the university well.

I'm sorry to hear of Tharpe's loss. Waiting 5 days (Thursday to Tuesday) for the memorial service after a passing sounds like a really long time.

Are Self's comments about Mickelson telegraphing bad news about Turner? SMU and not UT should be our toughest competition.

Jonathan Allison 8 months, 1 week ago

I hope that AWIII will announce what he plans to do, because I'm sick of everyone talking about him transferring. He deserves better than that.

You might be right about Mickey/Turner... but hopefully it's just because Self knows that Turner "might" go somewhere else, and not that he knows that Turner is going somewhere else.

I don't think that waiting 5 days for the memorial service is that long anymore. It seems like there are fewer and fewer open casket services as families are opting for cremation because it's cheaper than buying a casket and a plot at the cemetary.

Suzi Marshall 8 months, 1 week ago

It is just the cynic in me suspicious of the timing which required him to stay away last night. Self is talking about possibly signing two, which means one would have to go. Who is on the go list? Although Tharpe’s absence last night is understandable, he was the only one gone and AWIII reports he is staying.

Robert Brock 8 months, 1 week ago

You are paranoid. The kid's grandfather died. Grow up!

Suzi Marshall 8 months, 1 week ago

Not sure how your comment relates to the point. Self says he may sign two, which indicates one must leave. Accounting for those already leaving, minus those he called out last night (Ellis, Frankamp, Mason, Selden, Greene, and Mickelson) combined with AWIII comments to return, the list grows very short. Even shorter when Lucas commented to several in attendance how much he's looking forward to next season's team.

I don't recall if Self called out Traylor. I absolutely know Self never mentioned Tharpe and Tharpe was the only one missing. Speculation about Tharpe's departure would be reduced because his absence is understandable.

Walter Bridges 8 months, 1 week ago

Guess not. No talk about Greene's, Traylor's, Mason's ,Frankamp's, or any other players either.

Jack Wilson 8 months, 1 week ago

Self says KU could sign one or two players -- with the players right there? Two players signing means one is gone. If he said this just to the reporters, do any of these guys actually ask questions?

"Coach, you say you could sign two players. That means one player would have to leave your program. Who is leaving?"

It would be interesting to hear his response at least.

It's just like during the season. None of the reporters asks Self a tough question.

Jonathan Allison 8 months, 1 week ago

Jack: "Coach, you say you could sign two players. That means one player would have to leave your program. Who is leaving?"

Coach: "As of right now, no one has said to me "Coach I want to transfer," but throughout the season and the post-season there have been players who have talked to me about that option. If some one does decide that they want to transfer then I could see us adding up to two players in recruiting. We know that Andrew White hasn't been happy with his playing time and he's far away from his family, and he knows that he could transfer and sit out a year and play a lot of minutes somewhere else, but that's his decision and he's a great kid and we love having him here. Thinking about next season, I'd still like to sign a point guard and a big. I'd like to add someone who could help us next season. If an opportunity arises to add a senior transfer like Tarik who can come in with experience and play one season without sitting out then that's an option that I'd consider. At this point there aren't very many players available and a situation like that, where a player wouldn't tie up a scholarship long term wouldn't be a bad thing."

Jonathan Allison 8 months, 1 week ago

hypothetical Bill Self answer to HEM's question.

Walter Bridges 8 months, 1 week ago

I liked this post "I hope that AWIII will announce what he plans to do, because I'm sick of everyone talking about him transferring. He deserves better than that." much better.

Shane Johnston 8 months, 1 week ago

If we end up signing two, one of which is a guard, and AWIII stays, where does the scholarship come from? Nadir, Frank or Connor. Especially if the guard is an experienced transfer.

It's hard for me to imagine them being ok with playing less next year that last. Faced with a redshirt year, playing less minutes or transferring, I have to think they give transferring a serious thought.

Shane Johnston 8 months, 1 week ago

At this point, I think our best option at the guard spot is hoping Tharp has a better year. We just need him to be more stable. Frank and Connor wouldn't have the pressure of feeling like they need to be a starting point guard...yet. I think Frank could do it , but it's unfair to expect him to.

I think Self needs to stop recruiting point guards for next year, unless its for long-term depth. He needs to make it clear that he's all in with the current guys. Counting on Tharpe to have a solid year is no less risky than reaching for an experienced transfer that probably would only make us marginally better, especially if we get Turner.

Ian Emerson 8 months, 1 week ago

" I wish I could come back but it's too late now..", what a sad thing to say. You can tell the kid wanted to come back but he just didn't have a choice. Anyone else wonder what Anrio Adams position on the team would be this year had he kept a cool head and waited like all great Kansas guards do? Something to think about. As for AW3 he has GOT to make shots this year, I remember on plenty of occasions when he was put into games last year and just missed shots. That can't happen again if he really wants a role on this team.

Joe Joseph 8 months, 1 week ago

Rio's position would have been the same as last year's. He showed no aptitude for competing with Big-12 caliber opponents.

Walter Bridges 8 months, 1 week ago

Rio Adams is fighting for time at Odessa Texas JUKO. Seems that he has trouble making good decisions both on and off the court.

Walter Bridges 8 months, 1 week ago

JUCO.. Sorry.

More info: http://stats.njcaa.org/sports/mbkb/2013-14/div1/players/anrioadamsbfap

When looking this up, I just saw that he left Odessa College in January 2014 and is no longer on their roster. No idea where he is now. Kind of sad. Everyone expects these kids to make adult decisions even though for many, they really need someone who has their interests at heart to guide them.

Ryan Beddie 8 months, 1 week ago

I don't think Self will Sign 2 players if one isn't already leaving. This isn't Kentucky where people get forced out. But their are scenario's where Bill might possibly think about asking someone to go.. The only situation where Graham comitting to KU would be a good thing is if he decided after Turner, and Turner didn't pick KU. 4 of 5 Experts on ESPN pick Turner to Texas. Graham could commit this weekend to KU and throw a wrench into the Turner Sweepstakes. This could have a negative impact on Turner's decision knowing no open spot is there at the moment.

Jack Wilson 8 months, 1 week ago

Don't worry yourself at all. If Graham commits, and Turner wants to come here, that scholarship will magically appear. I promise you that.

And yea, Self would never force a kid to leave. Of course not. Never. All the kid's choice. Gotcha.

Aaron Paisley 8 months, 1 week ago

Self doesn't force players to leave to make room for better players? Quintrell Thomas, Royse Woolridge, and Mervyn Lindsay say hi.

Ryan Beddie 8 months, 1 week ago

There's possibly 10 million reasons why he isn't coming back. As Self said, the way it's currently set up makes it difficult to come back if you have the Talent to get to the league now. The money, and the NBA dream is just too big to overcome with most kids. Especially for Embiid, even if GM's have concerns over his back he's not going to slide out of the top 5. Noel blew his knee out and was still top 10 last yr.

Self knew he would be good, maybe even great but he didn't think it would happen in months, and to JoJo's credit and the KU coaching staff they were able to accelerate his skill level to the point where he is possibly the top pick.

Tony Bandle 8 months, 1 week ago

OAKVILLE ODDITIES:

1] Looking at the projected lottery teams, Jo Jo ranged from #5 to #1 based on which team had the first pick. Andrew was the #1 on the vast majority of the teams with Parker getting several and the guard from Australia and Marcus Smart[Lakers] each getting one.

2] I keep forgetting about Hunter who'se had a year of Division One experience plus a year of KU practice scrimmage [probably as good as a year of Div.1 somewhere else!]. With Hunter, Jamari, Cliff, Perry and Landon on the front line maybe, in the grand scheme of things, Devonte might be a better "get" for KU than Myles. Personally, I'll take Myles in a nano second!!!

3] Andrew and Jo Jo look sharp..the grey on black really works for Andrew.

4] Maybe Justin should watch a tape or two of "Australian Football".......it looks more like Mortal Kombat than sport!!

5] I am glad to know that AWIII and Tyler are both coming back..our NC chances just jumped considerably. :).

6] Kansas athlete boys and girls, listen up....eggs benedict in the mornings, lobster bisque at noon and surf and turf for dinner!!! ENJOY!!!

7]"We have enough players to make a run next year"........OK, but do we have enough guards???????

8] Jack Wilson's point is well taken..no one asks the tough questions like, Bill, how is the guard play going to improve next season, Bill, why don't you use the zone more when the game dictates it?, Bill, is that your real hair?...etc

9] ...if things fall right". Perry learns to box out and play defense, Frank learns what he's going to do with a drive into the paint a little sooner than being face to face with a seven footer, Kelly is half as good as Andrew but twice [maybe ]three times more aggressive, Wayne hits some bombs, Cliff plays like every opponent is Jahlil Okafor, the "good" Naadir shows up more often, Jamari keeps getting better, Hunter is as good as advertised, Brandon makes it hard for Kelly to get on the court, Myles shows up......

Walter Bridges 8 months, 1 week ago

If Turner goes elsewhere, we will be fine as we already have a lot of talent and depth but I really hope that we do sign him. Ellis, Traylor, Alexander, Mickelson, Lucas plus Turner would have to be the most talented and deepest frontcourt in college basketball next season.

Did I miss the news that Selden was injured all of last season and that he had a "procedure" at the end of the season or was this just just announced?

Shane Johnston 8 months, 1 week ago

Kentucky's frontcourt would have something to say about that

Walter Bridges 8 months, 1 week ago

Looks like Alex Poythress and Dakari Johnson will return, Lyles and Towns coming in... you make a pretty good point.

Walter Bridges 8 months, 1 week ago

Is anyone going to the Jordan Brand Classic 2014 this Friday? If so, I would love the chance to meet anyone who also comments here.

Also, congratulations to Wiggins for winning the award. Any award that has Danny Manning's name attached is worth winning.

Hard to tell but I like Wiggins suit better but pretty sure both cost a lot more than I'm willing to shell out for a suit.

I'm glad both players took the time to complete their coursework. I like both of these kids and really hope they both have highly successful NBA careers but always remember their Alma Mater.

Ryan Zimmerman 8 months, 1 week ago

If Mickelson isn't as good as we hope, we're in trouble underneath I think. I'm tired of watching Ellis play like a big man, when he isn't. He does fine some games, but sometimes he looks like he's a boy among men under there. I think Turner is more important than some random PG no one knows anything about. I'd take them both, but Turner is a huge force underneath and can be a game changer. I haven't seen Hunter play enough to see if he's good enough or not, but i know Traylor and Lucas aren't and wouldn't start on a lot of college teams.

I'm glad AW3 has respect on this board, but I've gotten tired of hearing the announcers say whenever he gets in a game over the last 2 years "He's the team best pure shooter". I've seen that kid miss more free throws on average than Black. I don't know if it's the pressure or what, but he's not a starter or even a reliable back up. Frankamp, Greene and Mason are all much more valuable than AW3. He's had 2 years to show the team he can be a part of them during a game, and hasn't impressed. If anyone needs to transfer, it's him.

Ryan Beddie 8 months, 1 week ago

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