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Monday, October 13, 2014

Vegas prep Zimmerman wowed by KU, Late Night

Kansas University basketball recruiting.

Kansas University basketball recruiting.

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Kansas University’s basketball players, coaches and support staff obviously made a big impression on Stephen Zimmerman, one of the best big-man prospects in the recruiting Class of 2015, last weekend.

“Bye Lawrence, it’s been fun! #RockChalkJayHawk,” Zimmerman, a 7-foot senior from Las Vegas’ Bishop Gorman High, wrote Sunday on Twitter.

“Thank you @CoachBillSelf and staff for the amazing weekend. We had a great time and learned a lot about KU! #RCJH,” Zimmerman’s mom, Lori Stevens, wrote in her own Twitter post.

Lori also tweeted “Great show!” from Friday’s Late Night in the Phog. And “Wow.What.A.Night. My goodness this is the loudest crowd I’ve ever heard. It’s craaaaazy!RCJH!”

Zimmerman’s mom told Jayhawkslant.com that she was awed from the start when coach Bill Self greeted them at the airport Friday. She also enjoyed attending a dinner party at Self’s house Saturday night and a breakfast Sunday.

“We had an amazing time and it was amazing seeing the team at his house,” Stevens told Jayhawkslant.com “The team was comfortable. Kids were relaxing on recliners, couches and the kids were playing different games. It was like a family get-together. We saw all of coach Self’s memorabilia and told stories, so it was a great night.”

Strength coach Andrea Hudy also visited with the 240-pound Zimmerman, who is ranked No. 10 nationally by Rivals.com.

“She pretty much picked out Stephen’s body and told him what he needed to work on just from looking at him, so that was very impressive,” Stevens said.

Zimmerman will visit Kentucky for Friday’s Big Blue Madness with three other players who made official visits to KU for Late Night — Carlton Bragg, Jaylen Brown and Brandon Ingram. Zimmerman also will visit UCLA on Oct. 24, Arizona on Nov. 7 and North Carolina at a yet-to-be-determined date. He’s also considering UNLV and Indiana and will not choose a school until spring. He has also said he will not be signing a letter of intent, merely a grant in aid with a school as protection in case the coach leaves for another job.

Ingram update: Ingram, a 6-8 forward from Kinston (North Carolina) High, tweeted: “Visiting Kansas was a great experience. I had a wonderful time. Shoutout to everyone who made it special! #RockChalkJayhawk.”

No. 18-rated Ingram has visited Duke and will visit Kentucky this weekend and North Carolina on Jan. 24. UCLA and N.C. State also are on his list. He will be a spring signee.

Bragg update: Bragg, a 6-9 senior forward from Villa Angela St. Joseph High in Cleveland who is ranked No. 14 nationally, told Jayhawkslant.com he “loved” his visit. He said he hung out a lot with junior Perry Ellis and freshman Devonté Graham.

“Coach Self let me know that Kansas wants me. He also said that he sees me playing the four (power forward) and that I’m not a five (center). I see myself as a power forward, so that’s what I wanted to hear from coach Self,” Bragg told Jayhawkslant.com. “That’s one thing that I will always remember about my visit — the coaching staff. Coach Roberts (Norm, assistant) is my recruiting coordinator and we have a pretty close relationship right now.”

Bragg will visit Kentucky this weekend and also has UCLA and Illinois on his list. He has said he will likely sign in the spring.

No. 2-rated Brown, a 6-7 senior forward from Wheeler High in Marietta, Georgia, will visit UK on Friday and UCLA on Nov. 15. He also has Georgia and Georgia Tech on his list and is planning on picking a school in spring. No 19-rated Dorsey, a 6-4 senior guard from Maranatha High in Pasadena, California, will visit Arizona State this weekend. He’s also visited Oregon and Colorado with Cal and UNLV on his list.

Fox update: DeAaron Fox, a 6-3 junior point guard from Cypress Lakes High in Katy, Texas, who is ranked No. 13 in the Class of 2016, also said he had a memorable visit.

“I know all of the guys that visited this weekend, so I hung out with all of those guys,” Fox told Jayhawkslant.com. “I mostly hung with Jayson Tatum (6-7 junior, St. Louis, ranked No. 4) Malik Monk (6-3 junior, Bentonville, Arkansas, ranked No. 6), Troy Brown (6-6 sophomore, Las Vegas, ranked No. 2) and Trae Young (6-1 sophomore, Norman, Oklahoma, unranked).

“We hung out in the locker room a lot. Coach Self talked to me about what he thinks I can bring to the table with my speed and the way they play. He thinks that I would be a perfect fit at Kansas. The one thing that stood out about my visit was how all the fans support all sports in Kansas City. When we were at Allen Fieldhouse, the Royals game was on and after every hit, the fans were just going wild. They are a real loyal fan base and I love that about the Kansas.”

Other juniors who visited: No. 28 Marques Bolden, 6-9, DeSoto, Texas; No. 42 Schnider Herard, 6-10, Plano, Texas; No. 66 Nick Rakocevic, 6-10, Westchester, Illinois; No. 93 Tyler Cook, 6-8, St. Louis. Other sophs who visited: No. 24 Mitchell Ballock, 6-4, Eudora; unranked DaMonte Williams, 6-2, Peoria, Illinois. Tim Finke, a 6-3 freshman from Champaign, Illinois also attended. His brother, Michael plays for the University of Illinois.

Comments

Suzi Marshall 5 years, 1 month ago

I'm super impressed how Self is going full out for Zimmerman, even picking him up at the airport. Kansas should be the perfect fit of Zimmerman. We don't have many big bigs whereas KY will have seemly a half dozen of them. However, I recall saying the same about that tall kid who went to TX after Self spent his Easter Sunday with him.

Hudy must have impressed him with all the experiences she has with bigs.

I'm curious if he's any relation to the ex-German foreign minister Arthur Zimmermann (www.archives.gov/education/lessons/zi...). Kansas could have its own version of "The Zimmerman Telegram."

John Boyle 5 years, 1 month ago

Hopefully he can sing better than Bob! He is a great songwriter though. I am actually a huge fan.

Joseph Bullock 5 years, 1 month ago

Suzi, Myles Turner is the kid who went to Texas. It was a great push by Coach Self, but he was never coming to Kansas. Kevin Durant has always been his favorite player, and was helping Texas recruit him. I totally agree that Self is going all out for Zimmerman, as he is a 7 footer, with Skilzzzzz! LOL PS: I'm ready for the season to start, and excited about my trips to Indy & Florida. Everything is set, for them.

Suzi Marshall 5 years, 1 month ago

Yes, I know the kid with the back story. My point was, regardless of all that, Self still went hard after him. We will also be at Disney but have not made a decision on Indy. I'm getting fired up for the season as well but won't let myself get overly hyped like last year.

Brianna Zaleski 5 years, 1 month ago

Suzi, Do u think that this is the first recruit Coach Self has picked up from the airport?

Jack Wilson 5 years, 1 month ago

I don't know .. but if I'm Carlton Bragg, I probably noticed that.

Mike Riches 5 years, 1 month ago

Exactly! And while Bragg's not 7' he's probably a 2 or 3 year guy, which in my opinion is more valuable!

Suzi Marshall 5 years, 1 month ago

I think it might be the first he's picked up since being at Kansas. If there were others, they were few and far between.

Joseph Bullock 5 years, 1 month ago

Brianna, I can't remember names, but I have read several times where Coach Self has picked kids up at the airport. But I will say this, he wants Zimmerman really, really, bad! So do I!

Joseph Bullock 5 years, 1 month ago

Suzi, I wasn't trying to lessen your point. I totally agree with you on Coach Self spending his Easter on a recruiting trip to visit Myles Turner. I'm sure he knew it was a long shot, because if I already new at that time, that Kevin Durrant was Turners favorite player, I know Coach Self knew it. My problem is this: Some kids are head cases, and just want all of the attention they can get, so they take visits, and lead Coaches on, even though they already know where they are going. I think Turner already had his mind made up, that he was going to Texas. I think he will be very sorry with that choice, when all is said and done.

Aaron Paisley 5 years, 1 month ago

There's nothing wrong with a kid already having his mind made up and still utilizing all of his visits. Days off from school, and a paid vacation to the schools you aren't committing to sounds like a good deal to me.

That may sound selfish, but that's what I would've done if I was an elite basketball recruit and had already decided on KU.

Rodney Crain 5 years, 1 month ago

Aaron I agree with you, my list of cities(umm whatever the closest schools) to visit would be, Hawaii, Miami, Phoenix, New York and Los Angeles. Then sign with KU. :)

I agree I think Turner was sold on choosing Texas. Maybe it was just close to home and has a lot to offer as far as a city too.

Brian Wilson 5 years, 1 month ago

Lol, I would add UNLV, Georgetown (Wash D.C.), Oregon Ducks, and Colorado. I might not go to Phoenix and I would probably include both Florida and Florida State with Miami.

Suzi Marshall 5 years, 1 month ago

Joseph, I live in Houston with a lot of close UT alums for friends. They never waivered in the belief that guy was UT bound. I'm sure Self knew that and really speaks to Self's mindset. The guy has an unshakable belief in his product and abilities.

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