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Sunday, July 19, 2015

In the running: A look at some of the top basketball preps still considering the Jayhawks

Josh Jackson puts up a shot in the Under Armour Elite 24 Game in this photo from Aug. 23, 2014, in Brooklyn, New York. Jackson, ranked the No. 1 recruit in the country, has Kansas University on his short list.

Josh Jackson puts up a shot in the Under Armour Elite 24 Game in this photo from Aug. 23, 2014, in Brooklyn, New York. Jackson, ranked the No. 1 recruit in the country, has Kansas University on his short list.

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Notes compiled as the July basketball recruiting evaluation period continues …

Josh Jackson, a 6-foot-7 senior shooting guard from Prolific Prep in Napa, California, who is ranked No. 1 in the Class of 2016 by Rivals.com, has a list of KU, Arizona, Kentucky, Duke, Louisville, Michigan State, Maryland, UNLV and North Carolina.

“I want a college coach that is going to push me to get better,” Jackson, who is originally from Detroit, tells ESPN.com.

ESPN’s Reggie Rankin says of Jackson: “He is a treat to watch compete. He plays every possession on both ends of the floor, is an above-the-rim finisher on the break and is a threat to rebound and take it coast to coast. He gets to the rim with short straight-line drives, hits high arcing floaters in the lane, posts smaller defenders and can hit the open three with his feet set. Jackson is also a terrific defender with the toughness to lock up all five positions on the high school level.”

• Terrance Ferguson, a 6-6 senior shooting guard from Dallas who is ranked No. 11 nationally by Rivals.com, is considering KU, Louisville, North Carolina, Arizona, Alabama, Texas A&M;, Texas, Oklahoma State and others.

“Ferguson is one of the best vertical athletes and long-range shooters in the class. He is also a notoriously streaky shooter who can score in bunches. Ferguson apparently added the feature of being a lockdown defender and was perhaps the best defensive player of the high schoolers on the (USA basketball) Under 19 squad,” writes ESPN.com’s John Stovall.

• De’Aaron Fox, a 6-3 senior point guard from Cypress Lakes High in Katy, Texas, who is ranked No. 9 nationally, tells Zagsblog.com he has heard the most from coaches from KU, Texas, Louisville and LSU. He’s also considering Baylor, N.C. State and others.

“I like the way they (Jayhawks) have played over the last couple of years,” Fox told Zagsblog.com in a recent interview. “I don’t think they’ve had the point guards that they could’ve gotten. Frank (Mason III) played really well the last two years. Right now they’re in South Korea and he’s leading them in points, steals, assists, almost every category, and I think if I was to go there I don’t think Frank will be there (instead in NBA) so I think I could just kind of step into the role.”

• Malik Monk, a 6-3 senior shooting guard from Bentonville (Arkansas) High, who is ranked No. 6 nationally, is considering Arkansas, Kentucky, KU, North Carolina, Oregon, Florida State and others.

He’s been compared to Russell Westbrook of the Oklahoma City Thunder. “(Playing like that) is something I’m going to try to do going forward,” Monk told Zagsblog.com.

• Troy Brown Jr., a 6-6 junior point guard from Las Vegas Centennial who is ranked No. 7 in the Class of 2017, is considering KU, Duke, UCLA, Arizona, UNLV and others. His sister is KU women’s player Jada Brown.

“Yeah, (KU) is one of the possible schools because my sister goes there and all that stuff,” Brown told Zagsblog.com. “With coach (Kurtis) Townsend, and coach (Bill) Self especially, they’re a good program and I really like them.”

• Mitch Lightfoot, 6-7 senior forward from Gilbert (Arizona) Christian who is ranked No. 140 nationally, tells Rivals.com he’s considering KU, Arizona, Stanford and Utah. He plans to visit KU this fall.

• Dewan Huell, a 6-9 senior power forward from Norland High in Miami who is ranked No. 22 nationally, is considering KU, Florida State, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, Miami, South Florida and Louisville, ESPN.com reports.

“Huell has great touch in and around the lane, especially along the baseline and when he moves to the open area on the side of dribble penetration. His release and follow-through is smooth and easy and Huell rebounds on both ends in addition to doing a great job running the floor,” writes ESPN’s Reggie Rankin.

• Udoka Azubuike, a 6-10 senior center from Potter’s House in Jacksonville, Florida, who is ranked No. 26 nationally, is considering KU, North Carolina, Florida, Florida State, Duke and others. He came to the U.S. from Nigeria 3 1/2 years ago.

“At 6-foot-10 and 280 pounds, Azubuike is an absolute load for opponents to defend in the low post. Nothing about his game is finesse. Azubuike is power, power, power,” writes Jeff Borzello of ESPN.com.

• Schnider Herard, a 6-10 senior center from Prestonwood Christian in Plano, Texas, who is ranked No. 41 nationally, lists KU, Oklahoma, Ok;ahoma State, Texas, Mississippi State, Purdue and others.

• Jarrett Allen, a 6-9 power forward from St. Stephens Episcopal School in Austin, Texas, who is ranked No. 17 nationally, lists KU, North Carolina, Kentucky, UCLA, Indiana, Notre Dame, Texas, Baylor, SMU, TCU and others.

• Kassoum Yakwe, a 6-7 senior power forward from Our Savior New American in Centereach, New York, who is ranked No. 57 nationally, is considering KU, Oregon, St. John’s and others, according to Zagsblog.com. He’s a former high school teammate of KU freshman Cheick Diallo.

• Rawle Alkins, 6-4 senior shooting guard from Christ the King in Brooklyn who is ranked No. 15 nationally, is considering KU, Kentucky, Texas, Villanova, Indiana, Louisville, Cincinnati, N.C. State, St. John’s, Duke, North Carolina and more, Zagsblog.com indicates. He’s going to attend Kentucky’s Big Blue Madness this fall.

• Wenyen Gabriel, a 6-10 senior forward from Wilbraham and Monson Academy in Massachusetts who is ranked No. 84 nationally, tells ESPN.com he’s considering KU, Duke, UConn, Texas, Wake Forest, Notre Dame, Villanova, Providence and others.

• Romello White, a 6-8 senior forward from Peachtree Ridge High in Suwanee, Georgia, who is ranked No. 116 nationally, tells ESPN.com he has heard from KU as well as Texas, Alabama, Memphis, Georgia, Georgia Tech, SMU, Marquette, Tennessee and many others. He decommitted from Tennessee before Rick Barnes was named coach.

• Payton Pritchard, a 6-1 senior point guard from West Linn (Oregon) High who is ranked No. 46 nationally and recently decommitted from Oklahoma, still is considering OU, plus KU, Louisville, Baylor, Michigan, Wisconsin, Arizona State, Oregon, Cal and others.

• Unranked Jeriah Horne, a 6-6 senior forward from former KU guard Billy Thomas’ KC Barstow program, is emerging as a major-college prospect. He tells Rivals.com he has seen coaches from Florida, Texas A&M;, LSU and others at his games.

Cutting KU: Dennis Smith Jr., a 6-2 senior point guard from Trinity Christian in Fayetteville, North Carolina, has eliminated KU from his list of schools. The country’s No. 4-rated player lists North Carolina, Wake Forest, N.C. State, Duke, Kentucky and Louisville. ... Kobi Simmons, a 6-5 senior combo guard from St. Francis School, Alpharetta, Georgia, who is ranked No. 8, now has a list of Kentucky, Georgia, Arizona, North Carolina, Ohio State and Xavier.

Comments

Suzi Marshall 4 years, 8 months ago

I just took a quick look at what DraftExpress is projecting, which has Diallo and Svi going just in or near lottery picks. If it pans out that way, Self will need a huge signing class. The '16-17 team could have 5 or 6 Freshmen in the rotation. I'm not overly anxious for Self to sign anymore of those sure-fired hell-bend OAD guys like Alexander and even Oubre. Well I'm on the fence about KO as he did some good.

Joe Ross 4 years, 8 months ago

If youre on the fence about Kelly, you should be on the fence about Cliff. Youre judging with the bias of retrospect, but going into it if you have a chance to recruit a player like Cliff Alexander you do it every single time. His numbers and how he projected as a player would still demand that you recruit him. Cliff never got his head turned around to look forward but that is something that, unless you have a crystal ball to see the future, you cant entirely know about a prospect. Timidity is not what the doctor ordered for recruiting, and it certainly isnt the reason why we're building McCarthy Hall.

Yes. We need multiyear players. We need some of that variety coming up the season after this to be sure. But when youre an elite level program that desires to go higher, facing this kind of situation is a part of the territory as long as the OAD/age-limit mandate exists. Lets hope for TAD.

Jonathan Allison 4 years, 8 months ago

Both Cliff and Kelly talked about staying two or three years after they were signed. They liked KU because Bill Self doesn't "force" players out into the NBA too early. The talk coming from them and their families was not that of a recruit who's hell-bent on being an OAD.

Suzi Marshall 4 years, 8 months ago

Taking out that loan in August was a telling sign that Alexander and/or his family were determined to be a OAD. Based upon the loan deal and his play, I'm convinced Alexander never ever had any interest at all about Kansas or college ball.

Jonathan Allison 4 years, 8 months ago

it's hard to determine which recruits are dead-set on being OAD when they are telling you the exact opposite. Sure in hindsight it looks obvious that the Alexanders had no interest in Cliff being in college for more than one year. But he and his dad had both talked about Cliff staying for a sophomore year.

Marius Rowlanski 4 years, 8 months ago

I agree to those who only want one year at the college level. Of the much heralded class of 2013/14, the lowest ranked recruit Mason (76) has done the most for our program but 12th ranked Selden may be the one who takes us the furthest if this is breakout year.BMac is still the only OAD who did much imo.

Aaron Paisley 4 years, 8 months ago

Ben McLemore was at KU for 2 years, not a OAD.

Eliott Reeder 4 years, 8 months ago

Oops, I replied below before I read your comment Aaron...

Eliott Reeder 4 years, 8 months ago

And since BMac was forced to redshirt a year, he really shouldn't be considered a true OAD player. He got to practice, meld with teammates, and learn the system before he ever set foot on the court for games.

Marius Rowlanski 4 years, 8 months ago

His freshman records should have an asterisk also.

Shannon Gustafson 4 years, 8 months ago

Nice to know that the OAD who broke all the Freshman records (Wiggins) and the "other guy" on that team (Embiid) didn't do much...

RJ King 4 years, 8 months ago

He's not dismissing Wiggins and Embiid's accomplishemnts. But Embiid's injury really hurt our chances in the tournament. And Wiggins just disappeared.

Last year's early exit wasn't much better, but at least WSU had been ranked ahead of us all year, so it wasn't as surprising. I think Marius is saying that the upper class leadership of Frank and Wayne is likely to bring three conference championships (rather than one), and put us in a (perhaps?) better position for a longer tournament run.

Plus Frank and especially Wayne seem to be mentoring and leading by example, which neither AW or Embiid ever did.

Shannon Gustafson 4 years, 8 months ago

I understand what happened at the end of the year but is that all that matters when factoring in whether they "did much" or not? It seems BMac dissappeared his first two NCAA tournament games as well (6.5 ppg, 2-14 FG). He was just fortunate enough to get a third chance to redeem himself on the Sweet 16 since there was enough around him to win without big games by a Freshman. For comparison Wiggins averaged 11.5 ppg and was 7-19 FG in his first two NCAA tourney games (Better than BMac) but with less help around him, we lost and his college career was over.

Marius Rowlanski 4 years, 8 months ago

31-6 with BMac being the leading scorer, set the following freshman records: points (589), scoring average (15.9), field goals attempted (400), free throw percentage (87.0), minutes played (1,191) and games started (37)… Became the first KU player since Mario Chalmers in 2006 to be named both the Big 12 Player of the Week and Rookie of the Week in the same season…

25-10 with Wiggins and Embiid. Wiggins did best most of BMac's freshman records but I'll stick with my original post.

Benz Junque 4 years, 8 months ago

Wiggins did everything better than B-Mac except have better teammates. Shannon is right. B-Mac played next to four senior starters, two of whom were redshirt seniors. Wiggins started next to freshmen Embiid and Selden and sophs Ellis and Tharpe.

Replace B-Mac with Wiggins in 2013 and try to convince me that KU would have accomplished LESS than they did with BMac. You won't be able to do it. Wiggins would have had a MONSTER season on that roster.

Marius Rowlanski 4 years, 8 months ago

LOL.. BMac had Rio Adams- Naadir Tharpe- Andrew White III- Justin Wesley- Jeff Withey- Evan Manning- Tyler Self- Elijah Johnson- Niko Roberts- Christian Garrett- Travis Releford- Jamari Traylor- Landen Lucas- Perry Ellis- Kevin Young for teammates. The 2013/14 team was BETTER and DEEPER. Ellis, Lucas and Traylor all had a year more experience...

Damn..I thought you were a LOT smarter.

Tom Jones 4 years, 8 months ago

The 13-14 team was only comparable to the 12-13 team in the middle of the season when Embiid was playing. Their starting five was comparable to 12-13 when he was starting and kicking ass, but they were *much worse when he wasn't. The drop off on defense especially, between Johnson/Mac/Releford/Young/Withey and Tharpe/Selden/Wiggins/Ellis/Black is gigantic. Then factor in basketball IQ, with a senior-laden team versus a freshmen/sophomore driven one...

It's not even debatable, really. When Embiid was playing well, you could compare the teams reasonably (although 12-13 was still better fundamentally). When he was out, there's no comparison.

Marius Rowlanski 4 years, 8 months ago

A lot of writing but you missed the question entirely.

Tom Jones 4 years, 8 months ago

Question?

You said: "BMac is still the only OAD who did much imo." That is obviously nonsense.

Then you said: "31-6 with BMac being the leading scorer, 25-10 with Wiggins and Embiid. Wiggins did best most of BMac's freshman records but I'll stick with my original post." in an attempt to cover your original silly post by moving the target to BMac's TEAM vs. Wiggins' team. It was a nice attempt, but you got correctly called out for doing so by Benz.

Then finally, it was: "The 2013/14 team was BETTER and DEEPER." This may be the funniest of the lot.

So tell me, Marius. What question did I miss, exactly?

Shannon Gustafson 4 years, 8 months ago

So you ARE saying that the only thing that matters when determining whether an individual player "did much" is the accomplishments of the team in the post-season. Interesting take on things, especially considering you mentioned all of the records BMac broke (regular season) when saying how good he was, then dismissed the regular season of Wiggins because they only won 1 game in the tourney (not two games like the squad with BMac).

Marius Rowlanski 4 years, 8 months ago

Enough...Really don't want to make this personal. Let's just disagree.

Marius Rowlanski 4 years, 8 months ago

He played ONE season... Yes he got to practice w/the team which I'm sure helped.

Brian Wilson 4 years, 8 months ago

Suzi, I think you are overly concerned. Here is what the NCAA says about "One and Dones"

"Since 2006(as of April 2015), when the NBA made high school players ineligible for the NBA Draft, there has been continuous discontent expressed about college basketball’s “one-and-done” problem. However, only 8 college frosh have been drafted on average each year since 2007 (11 was the maximum in 2008). Nearly two-thirds of the one-and-done NBA draftees since 2010 were early departures from just six schools—Kentucky (13), Kansas (4), Duke (3), Texas (3), Arizona (2) and UCLA (2).

The numbers show that the real destabilizing force in Division I men’s basketball is transfer behavior. About 20% of all freshman men’s basketball players leave their initial school after one year and 40% in total are gone by the end of year two. The vast majority of these departures are transfers."

http://www.ncaa.org/about/resources/research/true-one-and-done-problem-division-i-men-s-basketball

Suzi, I think this shows that the best thing we can do is recruit a bunch of the best players we can and let the cream rise to the top.

Suzi Marshall 4 years, 8 months ago

I know the numbers but from the crop of Kansas OAD, I'm so bummed by Selby, Alexander and to a more limited extent KO, the whole idea of recruiting the sure-fired OAD like Maker leaves me flat. I'd shed few tears if Self took a pass on guys like this Thong Maker guy.

Rodney Crain 4 years, 8 months ago

Lots of work to do in recruiting, lets not wait till May/June of 2016 to get it done.

I would like see 3 top 100 commits at least by March 2016, not 1 like last year.

Go Go Go !!!

Chris Shaw 4 years, 8 months ago

What does this mean? How about KU/Self get 3 recruits that fit the needs of the team and mesh with the pieces currently on the roster. Why would you recruit a square to fit try and fit it into a triangle? I'm not saying you, Rodney, but the recruiting ranking system and its publicity annoy me to the very end. Example: I think Carlton Bragg got a crash course in that very lesson at the WUG games.

Joe Ross 4 years, 8 months ago

Im lost on the point about how the recruit ranking system, Carlton Bragg, and the WUGs all intersect. Help?

Chris Shaw 4 years, 8 months ago

Rankings don't mean squat when you step foot in college. They don't mean jack squat if and when you declare for the NBA draft. NBA GM's don't pay attention to that stuff. Thats the problem IMO is the disconnect between the NBA and these so called recruiting experts and these affiliated sites (School).

When Bragg played at the WUG games...nobody cared he was the #15 or #19 recruit in the country. Nobody cared he was a McDonald's All American. To All those European players and European teams he was just another player. He got a crash course in that very lesson. It was good for him to realize and understand that.

Now, Bragg showed "Potential" and thats' what the rankings and the recruiting sites are for. But, this constant desire to be a number and ranking IMO is ruining these players/recruits.

Look above at every single player that was listed in this article. They are all fluff descriptions about these recruits and the bottom 12 players mention their ranking in their class and the schools they are considering with the focus on their ranking (A stupid number which means more than most people think).

If you actually go to these recruiting sites its more fluff, just in more detail and description. How often do these sites talk about the Weaknesses of these recruits and what they have to work on? Instead, they spend great detail pumping them up, talking their strengths, developing fluff descriptions, and promoting to the end of this universe the McDonald's All American game. They also talk about nausea whether a recruit jumped or fell in the rankings.

The problem with a lot of these recruiting sites now is their school affiliated. Take The Shiver for instance. Those people put in a lot of time and I respect that. But, don't you think they are bias about the information they send out about these recruits? Especially the recruits that are considering KU.

I just see too much now how these players are propped up and told how great they are and how much "Potential" they have based off a number..."10", "5", "6", "1", "22". Its' one freaking class with one group of recruits in that one specific year. Wait till they enter the NBA draft and it encompasses college players and "Professionals" from all over the world. I think the way these kids are evaluated send the wrong message and I think it's hurting the fundamentals of their game. Or, at least the weaknesses they don't know about because guys like Malik Monk are being compared to Russell Westbrook.

Chris Shaw 4 years, 8 months ago

Just Imagine if Cliff Alexander would have gotten this WUG experience last year as the so called #"3" prospect. You think his "Weaknesses" would have shown up pretty quickly? You think him becoming a little more humble might have happened?

These AAU kids only play against one another and its a skewed, political (Shoe Companies), and it's a very small sample size against average or below average competition. But AAU and the Shoe company Camps are the benchmarks that have prevailed and its' all because of $$$.

I get not everyone gets opportunities to play in an event like KU did this summer, but could you imagine the impact, insight, and understanding Cliff would have realized had he gone up against Brazil's, Russia's, Germany's, or Serbia's front line? I think he would have quickly realized nobody cares he was the #3 recruit coming out of high school.

Chris Shaw 4 years, 8 months ago

Rodney, all I'm doing is having a discussion. I responded to your post in a respectful manner above as well as below. I expect the same.

Rodney Crain 4 years, 8 months ago

Chris, Typically, not always, but typically the ranking systems, which miss on a few, not many but a few players, identify the best players in the country. Aiming to get players that fit your needs from that group highly improves your odds to replace players that have left.

With that said Self has been cat like in landing players, and on his feet, with late on the rise players who can contribute to the team the next year who were not ranked as highly early as they ended up. These players tend to stick around longer and his proven track record has made a believer out of me that he has a wide scope in identifying from the these many pools that remain near the end of the recruiting cycle.

Since we need possibly 5-7 players in 2016 having three from the top 100 and a few from the other pools that are there makes a good target to aim for. (other pools = transfers, decommits, reclassifiers, ...)

This is what that means, hope this helps.

Bragg, you have no idea what you are talking about. If you are going to measure any ranked freshman against older, international players, playing a completely different type of game on a court they have never played on, using rules they have never played by, you might want to hold those comments to yourself. They make you look foolish. There is a reason Self took 2 very experienced guards with him to replace our injured players. Those games require upper classmen to win.
I think Bragg did pretty good, keep in mind he broke his nose and played, not easy, and learned a great deal. I see nothing that jeopardized his ranking. I saw toughness, an ability to defend and score, a great effort every time he came off the bench.

Chris Shaw 4 years, 8 months ago

Rodney, good post, but I still have to disagree about Bragg (insert Cliff Alexander in here as well). So, it's okay to measure Bragg against AAU competition that is the same age, here in the united states, as well as younger, but it's not okay to measure Bragg against older, international players, and playing supposedly a different game over seas? How does that make me look foolish?

Do you think high school, college, international, and NBA are all the same game? NBA is so much different high school, college, and international it's not even close. But I could argue that the international game prepares you more for the NBA than high school or college IMO.

My point was not to slam Bragg by bringing him into this convo. My point was to make it more realistic in the expectations that he has for himself in regards to his high school hype, his recruiting ranking, and the mind sight he had coming out of high school.

I completely agree that Bragg is gonna be really good. I"m a fan of Bragg already. I liked what I saw this summer at the WUG games. But IMO he has a lot of work to do and I think he's realized through that experience alone how much more work he actually has to put in. I mean, he showed promise defensively immediately, but offensively he was about as raw as they come for a young big man.

The way the system is set up currently makes it seem realistic for these kids to automatically jump from High School to the NBA. There is a select few (And I mean (1 maybe 2) every year that could possibly consider it, but actually making it is a different story.

The system also makes it seem (Perception wise) that playing in college and or playing in Europe is a knock against their name or NBA prospect status. Listen to Cliff Alexander and his quotes (All of last season to now) and he's been playing in the shadow of that #3 ranking the entire time. It's gotten even worse now that he wasn't drafted and is fighting for his life to just make a roster. Who's fault is that? Everybody has their opinion on that issue. If Cliff goes and has a successful career in Europe he's still gonna be considered an NBA bust, which is very sad IMO. It's sad because it all started with the unrealistic evaluations (Fluff pieces) and rankings at the high school level with these affiliated sites.

Rodney Crain 4 years, 8 months ago

Thanks for the respectful post Chris. let me give this some thought.

Tom Jones 4 years, 8 months ago

Yet another post showing RC's complete lack of understanding of the recruiting process. Maybe he's still trying to digest his crow...

Rodney Crain 4 years, 8 months ago

More pointless dribble from Tom Tom Jones. No information, nothing of value, no point and no actual disagreement with even a single one of my points.

So Tom, other than you just don't like me anything to really add or are you just throwing water balloons from the cheap seats like usual? What a complete waste of effort, you must be so proud of your little self...

Yet another one of your foolish posts. Got anything of value? Did not think so.

Tom Jones 4 years, 8 months ago

Sorry, I thought I was pretty clear.

Your post did not actually have any "points" to disagree with. Just some baseless ranting. "Lots of work to do in recruiting, lets not wait till May/June of 2016 to get it done." implies that Self and the staff waited until May/June of 2015 to put together the class they are bringing in, which is absurd and shows your complete lack of understanding of the recruiting process.

Hope this helps.

Oh, and I have no personal feelings about you, as I don't know you at all. I wish I could say that you appear to have no personal feelings about me. It's clear from each response that you do. Might wanna let those go. It's just the internet.

Eliott Reeder 4 years, 8 months ago

It's "drivel" Rodney, not dribble, and I've corrected you on this word before. Get it right next time!!! ;)

Tom Jones 4 years, 8 months ago

The guy can't even use basketball terms correctly. Maybe he should try a different site?

Benz Junque 4 years, 8 months ago

Rodney's going to ride this issue about how early guys sign all year and about how signing guys late in the process is somehow a red flag or a sign that Self and staff are slipping or slacking. he did it all last year and he'll do it all this year. No need to rehash it all with the same guy over and over.

Rodney Crain 4 years, 8 months ago

Too Late Benz, a day late and a dollar short again. No surprise there.

Rodney Crain 4 years, 8 months ago

Actually Benz as is typical you are using your selective memory again and then projecting. You tend to do that a lot on here.

Let me help, read my intial comment, which has zero to do with what you are saying. Reread it again, and then again and then again.

Only after a few hunderd times maybe will it sink in that with so many possible openings in 2016, I am hoping, just hoping, we can fill some of them before March. No panic, its fricking July not all year again, and its very very early in the process.

How in the world you fast forward to your assumptions is beyond reason and beyond me, but alas you do that a lot on here.

Pump the breaks little guy and let the process play out. Why all the negative comments..., wait never mind, that is all you add here? What a shock you are with Tom tom on this.

Tom Jones 4 years, 8 months ago

No, Benz is correctly stating that your initial post was more whining about how the 2015 recruiting class came together.

Again, not rocket surgery, little buddy.

Benz Junque 4 years, 8 months ago

Sorry but we are simply giving you credit for not being dumb. We spent the last two months listening to you rant about how late guys were signed in the Class of '15, so when you say "lets not wait till May/June of 2016 to get it done" we all know what you're saying. You beat that drum enough that we all know what you're getting at.

No need to try to play it off as a simple numbers game. We all know better. You have successfully made us all aware of your schtick.

Marius Rowlanski 4 years, 8 months ago

In Rodney's defense, I believe that he is saying that it would have been nice if we had signed some of the top recruits earlier in the season and didn't need to have a GREAT spring signing season.

It is true that many of the top players purposely wait to see where they will have the best chance of starting and fortunately that worked out very well. If you look at the 2016 recruiting class, there are already several five-star recruits signed and next year we are going to need both frontcourt and backcourt players.

I don't see anything wrong in wanting to see KU land a few good players early. We certainly have done so in the past.

Shannon Gustafson 4 years, 8 months ago

Wanting them to sign early is great but it's completely out of the hands of the coaching staff. The kids only sign when they want to. Blasting the coaching staff for their inability to get the kids to sign early makes no sense when it's out of their control. If they want to sign early the will (Selden - October, Bragg - January) if they don't want to sign early and would rather wait to see who is going pro, what roster they would play on, etc. then they will (Wiggins, Diallo).

It might be easier to get kids to sign earlier this year since there are Seniors who they know are leaving no matter what but there is still no way for the coaches to force them to sign early, regardless of how much Rodney wants it to happen.

Brianna Zaleski 4 years, 8 months ago

Looks like we're in in a ton of good recruits. Coaches are working hard and the law of averages will play out in our favor. It seems as if S. Korea is even helping recruiting as some of the kids were following us over there. It certainly didn't hurt it. Coach T and Coach Roberts have been putting in work.

Chris Shaw 4 years, 8 months ago

De Aaron Fox's quote:

“I like the way they (Jayhawks) have played over the last couple of years,” Fox told Zagsblog.com in a recent interview. “I don’t think they’ve had the point guards that they could’ve gotten. Frank (Mason III) played really well the last two years. Right now they’re in South Korea and he’s leading them in points, steals, assists, almost every category, and I think if I was to go there I don’t think Frank will be there (instead in NBA) so I think I could just kind of step into the role.”

I've been hearing this more and more lately about Frank Mason, which seems odd to me considering I just started hearing about it half way through the University Games at the beginning of the Month.

There seems to be rumblings about Mason possibly leaving next year. Why else would a recruit make this kind of statement? Look, I'm a big Frank Mason fan! I think the timing of his presence at KU has been a little off at KU his first two years with roster spots his frosh year not playing a whole lot with Wiggins and Embiid and Tharpe in front of him. Last year he was amazing and KU not only had gaping holes in their front court...he was waiting for the rest of the team to catch up to his level (Actually, he's still waiting on everyone to catch up to him but they are closing the gap).

Again, I"m a huge Frank Mason fan. I think he's a cross between Adonis Jordan and Sherron Collins in terms of mind sight and skill level. If we are being truly realistic, is Frank Mason an NBA type caliber player after his junior? I'm seriously throwing the question out there for all to answer.

I'm gonna say for a third time now. Mason has been one of my favorite players the previous two years and I'm definitely a fan. I can totally see Mason making great money over in Europe and playing professionally. He will be a professional no doubt about it IMO. He proved that at the WUG games. But the NBA? I mean, I've heard rumblings he may consider to leave if its for the NBA or Europe regardless after his Junior year.

It took me all by surprise because I expected Mason to be here for 2 more years. Mason IMO isn't going to get any better skill set wise IMO. His decision making could obviously improve, but that comes with experience. He's already a stud so his ceiling and potential isn't gonna increase more than it already is. I just found the discussion when I heard it kind of shocking. Couple that with Fox's quote and some others out there it kind of makes sense. Just taken back when I heard it.

Jonathan Allison 4 years, 8 months ago

"is Frank Mason an NBA type caliber player after his junior (year)?"

I love Frank Mason as PG for KU for the next two season. He has already delivered us a lot of W's and he will continue to do so. But if he wants to be drafted by the NBA he needs to play out his college eligibility and maximize his exposure at KU.

He showed tremendous growth during the WUGs and his A:TO ratio was excellent. He's definitely trending up. And you're probably right that no matter whether it's this year or next year he's only going to be a fringe draft pick because of his size unless he explodes a la Kemba Walker.

If he's thinking going the Euro League route, then it would make some since to throw his hat in the draft pool this year. But he needs to get some good advice from people who have done it. Euro ball is a harsh reality. Enjoy your last year of college where the fans love you and the community loves you and the TV cameras love you.

Bryce Landon 4 years, 8 months ago

I don't know what Fox saw in the Jayhawks the previous two seasons that made him like what he saw. Despite the talent they have had, they have been rather ordinary at best, regularly giving up 40-60% shooting on defense, struggling with inferior opponents, blowing big leads, losing 19 games and bowing out in the Round of 32 both times.

Now if Fox had the chance to see any of KU's games in South Korea, he should definitely like what he saw because the team got back to playing Jayhawk basketball the way it's supposed to be played.

Tom Jones 4 years, 8 months ago

It's possible that he watched them all year the last two seasons (winning a tough league despite playing a ton of underclassmen both times), not just the end of the seasons when they were missing key pieces.

Bryce Landon 4 years, 8 months ago

Even when they had their key pieces they were still mediocre.

And at Kansas, winning the Big 12 and reaching the Sweet 16 should be the bare minimum.

Tom Jones 4 years, 8 months ago

"Even when they had their key pieces they were still mediocre."

That's absurd. But what should we expect from the FIRE BILL SELF guy, I suppose?

Bryce Landon 4 years, 8 months ago

In case you hadn't noticed, I've dropped that mantra now that Self has brought home the gold medal from South Korea. To go undefeated through the event the way he and his guys did has restored my confidence in his coaching abilities.

Rodney Crain 4 years, 8 months ago

Tom Tom just clicking on like on your own posts does not mean anyone at all agrees with your condescending comments.

I did not see a lot to like about our last two seasons. We played just good enough to win the B12 but fell very flat in the NCAA.

Bryce Landon 4 years, 8 months ago

Hopefully our trip to South Korea is a harbinger of better things to come for Kansas, and maybe this group can return the program to greatness.

Tom Jones 4 years, 8 months ago

My post was not condescending at all. It was my opinion that the recruit made a knowledgeable statement based on watching games throughout the season and not just the tournament game when we were depleted each of the last two years, including the #3 pick in the draft in 2014.

Hope this helps.

Darwin Dandy 4 years, 8 months ago

I said it before and I say it again. I just feel like if Mason can get his foot in the door for a summer team somebody would sign him. It definitely wont be the biggest contract but he could get on with a team. But like u guys said he will make a lot more money overseas and he has a family to provide for so I think he follows the money overseas. But it definitely makes you wonder. Don't it?

Benz Junque 4 years, 8 months ago

Mason won't play one minute in the NBA unless he's got a late growth spurt in him. That's not a slight on Mason at all; the NA is simply the best of the best. He'll do very well overseas and have a nice career in the sport.

Darwin Dandy 4 years, 8 months ago

So how did other players under 6' make a career in NBA?

Benz Junque 4 years, 8 months ago

By being faster, better shooters, better scorers, more tenacious defenders, better passers with better handles and care of the ball than what Mason is right now.

I love Mason. He is developing into a very good college player. There are lots of very good college players that weren't NBA players. There's nothing wrong with that. The mistake is assuming that all very good college players will be NBA players. They won't. It has been proven hundreds of times over.

Darwin Dandy 4 years, 8 months ago

Of course not right now but he has a whole season ahead of him to get better that's why I optimistic that he can get to that level. Still believe he can get that level but very good point about very good college player not being NBA players

Elias Dunlavy 4 years, 8 months ago

Unless mason grows 5+ inches he most likely wont be making his money in the NBA....I could see him having a very lucrative career in Europe.

Jay Scott 4 years, 8 months ago

Mason, Graham, Greene, Vick, Bragg, Coleby and Lucas are all back next year. That's a really solid team. Add in one solid recruit, one solid transfer and that's rotation. If ONE of Svi, Diallo or Selden returns. It's a NC contender. The sky isn't falling this time either little chickens...

Rodney Crain 4 years, 8 months ago

Come back to earth Jay. You are in a dream word buddy. 2016 we will lose 5-7 guys, many who contribute points and minutes, due to NBA and or graduation.

Unless we are getting Wilt Chamberlain (again) and Michael Jordan (trying to stay in your dream world here) we need more than two players. Its time to wake up JJ.

I would like to know what the color of your sky is, I bet its very pretty.

Darwin Dandy 4 years, 8 months ago

So who leaves in your mind Mr. Crain just curious is all

Rodney Crain 4 years, 8 months ago

Absolutes - Traylor SR Ellis SR Mickelson SR Manning (Sr but not counting as Schl.) Diallo

Very possible - Selden Svi, if he plays well or does not get off the bench he is likely to leave. He needs to play.

Possible - Bragg

4 for sure, 5/6 very possible, 7 possible.

Brianna Zaleski 4 years, 8 months ago

Diallo is not an absolute OAD. Although it is highly probable, it isn't a guaranteed like a Sr. that must leave. We never know what will happen in 1 season, plus these are kids we are talking about here.

Darwin Dandy 4 years, 8 months ago

O ok cool I could see those scenarios if Selden has a good year I think he is gone too but not so sure about Svi yet even if he has a good year. Bragg I think not so much unless he just gets it and is in the rotation from day one which I doubt if you take a look at Self's track. If Diallo has a good season, I think he leaves as well but I don't think he is an absolute just yet but only time will tell

Shannon Gustafson 4 years, 8 months ago

Manning is a walk-on that doesn't play so he shouldn't really count towards who we are losing/need to replace (we'll always replace walk-on Seniors with more walk-on's without any trouble).

So we lose the SR Scholarship players for sure (Ellis, Traylor, Mickelson) so we know we need a class like this year's at minimum (3 quality guys) though we've already got one of those spots filled when Coleby is eligible next year (he's in this year's class but we won't see him play this year).

Diallo certainly could be OAD, depends on how his offensive game develops this year and how badly he wants to go to the NBA vs enjoy College another year if he's a borderline lottery guy.

Selden and Svi will probably play the same position this year so I doubt both of them would go pro. One or the other is certainly possible though. Self has said he expects Diallo to start at the 5 which means he should get the most minutes at that position which will hurt Bragg's minutes (see below).

IMO Bragg isn't going anywhere since he'll be stuck behind Perry 9and Diallo) this year at the 4/5 and won't get a ton of minutes when he's competing against, Mickelson, Lucas, and Traylor as backups at the 4/5. The following year should be Bragg's coming out party.

I doubt if anyone else leaves unless it's because of a playing time dispute (transfer) and those are really hard to predict before the season even starts since we don't know how the minutes will be distributed (so we'd be speculating on who's leaving based on speculated minutes...not exactly reliable).

So it looks like we'll lose 3 for sure, possibly 4 is possible, and 5 at most unless someone transfers.

Chris Shaw 4 years, 8 months ago

Thats a really thoughtful post. Well said. I agree with all of it although I don't think Selden stays if he has a break out year and just crushes it this year. There are still a lot of unknowns this year with Selden, but Selden has experienced the "Struggles" more so than most and has received heavy criticism at times his first two years an his draft status has plummeted big time because of it.

With that said, I wouldn't blame Selden one bit for leaving if he does crush it this year and his name somehow starts creeping back up in the first round discussion. It may be his best shot to the make the "league". He would certainly have to put up dominant and eye popping performances for that to happen this year. Lot's of "What if's", but regardless...he needs a breakout year and take ownership of his future and this team.

Shannon Gustafson 4 years, 8 months ago

Agreed, it's up in the air how his season will go and therefore whether he stays or goes.

Jonathan Allison 4 years, 8 months ago

why doesn't Malik Monk place KU first on his list like all of the other recruits do??? ;)

Jonathan Allison 4 years, 8 months ago

I read De'Aaron Fox's quote about Frank this way.

"I won't being going to KU to back up Frank Mason at PG. If Frank Mason is still at KU next year, then I won't be."

Darwin Dandy 4 years, 8 months ago

+10...took the words right out of my mouth

Bryce Landon 4 years, 8 months ago

Josh Jackson, if you want to be pushed by a coach to get better, no coach will push you harder than Bill Self. He will push you so hard that there will be days when you resent him; but someday you will thank him for it.

Glen Miller 4 years, 8 months ago

Appreciate the "update", but to anyone who's been following the team knows what guys have us in the running and what guys don't. I was looking for a little more information on where they are leaning towards. Which ones we've got the best shot at. And which ones seem to be our priorities. If you could offer up any insight to that end, it would be awesome! I know it is an inexact science, but any info to that end would be great!

Chris Shaw 4 years, 8 months ago

Ferguson seems to be the biggest KU lean at the moment. KU has been on him for a while. With the rest...your guess is as good as mine.

Marius Rowlanski 4 years, 8 months ago

I have Marcus Bolden first and Ferguson close behind.

http://247sports.com/Player/Marques-Bolden-34793

I think Bolden has to be the most important player for Self to sign. 6'10" 235 lbs. and another year to add muscle and weight. What a great start that would be if we got both. A solid 5 and a lean 6'6" shooting guard with range.

Aaron Paisley 4 years, 8 months ago

Bigs are the priority. KU is going to lose 3 bigs to graduation and 1 to early entry in the draft. Selden and Svi are possible early entrants so Self needs to stay in contact with wings in this class,b but it won't be clearer until January what level of priority a wing actually us in this class.

With 4 scholarships, the breakdown should be a ready to play and start immediately big, a ready to contribute off the bench big, a development big who will take a year to be ready to play, and a wing that can come off the bench and contribute immediately if necessary. Another wing if Selden goes, and a combo if Svi goes.

Chris Shaw 4 years, 8 months ago

I don't get it either. People spend more time discussing recruits that Kansas will never get more than the team or it's results during the season. That's what blows my mind.

Eliott Reeder 4 years, 8 months ago

I completely agree. I mean, I read the stuff anyway if it's on this site, because I can't help myself, but I don't obsess over any one player until they have committed to Kansas. Then I'm all in!

Suzi Marshall 4 years, 8 months ago

Amen to kids being stupid and getting stupider! Recruiting is something I have long, like 40 some years, disliked. I just hope our guys can weed out those guys that have no interest at all about college ball or Kansas. Unless a OAD is going to come in and play like Durant or even Wiggins, it wouldn't break my heart if we just took a pass.

Shannon Gustafson 4 years, 8 months ago

I try not to pay much attention this early for the reasons you mentioned. Once we get towards the end of the season when there is a shorter list (and the all-star games are played), I start looking at their recruiting profiles, measurables, videos, etc. to see how they would fit into our system and fill our needs. With this info I start paying more attention to the guys that I think are the best fit (Diallo was the guy I paid the most attention to last year as I thought he was the best available to fill our needs).

Rodney Crain 4 years, 8 months ago

And yet this is the most commented article on here in months.

Why do people watch the NFL draft, the NBA draft? Why is who chooses to play for your limited scholarship team so important? Why build McCarthy? Upgrade the locker rooms, have all the post season camps and games, the AAU, etc.... etc....?

Cause it is interesting, it could mean the difference from your team getting better or worse the next season or keep a winning streak going.

John Randall 4 years, 8 months ago

Rodney, I understand your preference for blathering about recruits –– no matter how bad your comments are, in a week they're history and you can apply your dearth of understanding to another "top 100" or maybe some poor schmuck finds himself out of his real depth for a day or two.

No matter what, everyone will respond with alacrity because the only thing you have to offer is the lack of anything to offer.

Bryce Landon 4 years, 8 months ago

After what Self and the boys in blue just did in South Korea, I can once again find it within me to trust Self.

Chris Shaw 4 years, 8 months ago

Good stuff HEM. I'm not convinced Diallo is gonna be a OAD. Would not shock me to see him leave, but it would not shock me for him to stay a second season either. I could actually see Diallo coming back for his sophomore year and teaming with Bragg as an amazing front court with Lucas and Coleby (Sp?) off the bench.

Shannon Gustafson 4 years, 8 months ago

I agree, it will depend greatly on how his offensive game develops (which effects if he's projected as a lottery guy or not), how deep of a run we make, how badly his family needs money, and how much he enjoys college.

Marius Rowlanski 4 years, 8 months ago

How deep a run we make? Try to be consistent.

RJ King 4 years, 8 months ago

A question regarding your earlier comments about rankings. Are the rankings for HS players based on:

1) their ability or productivity so far in HS?

2) their potential to play well or star in the college game?

3) their potential to have a great future in basketball (NBA or Europe)?

4) or some amalgamated assessment of #1 thru #3?

A player's ranking (especially a small point guard or inexperienced big) could jump or drop dramatically depending on the criteria.

Aaron Paisley 4 years, 8 months ago

1 and 2 are the biggest factors along with what scouts opinions of players are. Even the guys who compile the ranks admit it's a little bit of a crap shoot when it comes to an exact ranking.

For the most part, the best way to look at rankings are with a range of the rankings.

1-10, high 5 star players assumed OAD

11-15, mid 5 star players possible OAD

16-25ish, low 5 star players unlikely to be OAD

Rivals typically has about 25 players rated as 5 star each year, but it can vary a little bit each way depending on the year.

25ish-50ish, high 4 star players likely to contribute immediately but not necessarily start or be a star.

50ish-75ish, mid 4 star players not likely to play much as freshmen but could as sophomores and still be good players.

75ish-100ish, low 4 star players whose ceiling is likely role player and may not contribute until 2nd-3rd year.

Rivals typically transitions from 4 to 3 star around 100 give or take a few spots.

100+ 3 star players who rarely play early and are typically back up plans to develop for the future.

Note that these descriptions are related to how these players are viewed by KU and other blue bloods as far as their expected development time goes.

Chris Shaw 4 years, 8 months ago

Aaron, now I may be wrong, but it's always been my understanding that a lot of these scouts are evaluating talent based on their "NBA Potential", but the rankings help identify the recruits for the college game as well as the NBA. It's a double dipping per say, but it's suppose to be more geared towards the NBA which IMO is the complete asinine way of going about these evaluations.

IMO, there is no clear cut definition on how these scouts evaluate the kids or what their underlying incentive to do so actually is (We pretty much know what it is) in the end.

The problem IMO is that the evaluations are skewed because it's against at best average talent within AAU and then you have the shoe companies trying to make deals with certain kids which IMO also plays a factor in these rankings which family members and players believe is the ultimate goal for some reason.

It really is a shame the NBA Players Union is allowing this happen. I Mean, I know they are trying to protect their "Veterans" in the league, but at the same time they are really creating a cluster #$#@ (Pardon my language) within the AAU with all of its underlying political side businesses and corruptness to lock up these kids with shoe deals, specific agents, colleges, etc.

Unfortunately, Colleges and Universities are caught up in the middle of this juggernaut and they have their own agendas to get top talent which also could be viewed as very sketchy at times.

It's amazing to me that the AAU, College, and NBA couldn't come up with a platform to work together to come up with a system that benefits all. I mean, it works in baseball and people make the right decisions and wrong decisions all the time, but college baseball and Major League Baseball work cohesively together with the system that is in place.

RJ King 4 years, 8 months ago

Thanks for your response. I always thought the rankings were just as Aaron described - with the criteria being HS and college ability. (Therefore a 5'10" point guard might be in the top 15, yet never play in the NBA, despite Spud Webb exceptions. And a raw 7 footer could be ranked in the 50's-60's yet jump to lottery pick after a year or two.)

But in previous posts, you had mentioned the NBA assessment aspect, which adds another whole layer of complexity to the system.

You sound like you are pretty familiar with the darker side of the AAU and the corporate influence. There's no denying it's there. As a girl who just loves her sports, sometimes I just want to look away from that crash. If there was meaningful collaboration, then THAT would be nice to watch.

Chris Shaw 4 years, 8 months ago

Unless I completely misinterpreted what I've read over at The Shiver and people in charge over there as well as other top recruiting sites and scouts...It's been my understanding that they evaluate talent per class based on how they project to the NBA. Unfortunately, IMO that mindset (And the current perception) allows the College Game as well as the "OAD" moniker to be caught in the middle as one big mess. I mean, that's the only reason we have the term. Are you OAD or not? Unfortunately, that's how these evaluations at least in the minds of these kids and families are viewed and perceived and I think that's sad.

RJ, I think that would be a great question for any top Scout who does this for a living. I will ask Matt Scott or Ryan Noel in some of the discussion threads over at the The Shiver to hopefully get an answer or explanation.

Finally, I hope you don't look away from the "Crash" (Your words not mine-LOL) because it's a mess. It's as corrupt as it's ever been. I thought it was bad back in the middle and late 90's to early 2000's, but IMO its worse now days. Its just more structured, organized, and "Corporated" with the shoe companies. It's hard to track the corruptness, but it's there. Everyone is a pin drop away from trying to exploit these kids.

RJ King 4 years, 8 months ago

Along slightly different lines, I remember being (young and) dumbstruck when Tommy John signed with the Yankees. (Wait, no . . . they're the enemy, right???) Then Ryne Sandberg held out on his contract renegotiation. (So, there is a difference between 4 and 5 million???) When George Brett signed his "lifetime" contract, I naively congratulated him on his loyalty to the team, to which he honestly admitted there was really no way he could turn down that much money.

Part of me is stuck in an "It's A Wonderful Life" loop. But my whole family and I work in the sports television industry and I understand it's about the money. The NFL might be the worst.

These kids probably understand that they are commodities. Still . . . they just seem so young to me.

Benz Junque 4 years, 8 months ago

there are probably 10 players a year that could possibly make the jump from high school to the NBA. There are I think less than 30 players in the last 100+ years to go directly from their amateur (HS or college team) directly to MLB without spending time in the minors.

It works in baseball because baseball has a full minor league system developed over the last 100+ years. Basketball has no developmental track between "amateur" ball and the NBA.

Rodney Crain 4 years, 8 months ago

Hey Jack how you doing? Good to see you post again!

Gerry Butler 4 years, 8 months ago

Jack 247 sports.com shows us well in the front running for Fergurson, it shows us as dead even in the lead for Jackson our lead with him has dwindled a lot was in the front by quite abit. now its us and Arizona dead even, shows us in the lead for Heard, if you go t that site a different times you can pull up what they list as latest crystal ball predictions it will pull up different players at different times show the latest updates on them, who the leaders are for them and breaks down the pct of the teams that they are serious about or who is in the lead for them. bolden has been on there and it shows us way in front for him . my thoughts are for what they are worth, feel like Fox will probably end up at Texas, not feeling as good as I was with Jackson, looking like more and more he is getting closer with Arizona doesn't hurt that Sean Miller is his coach on the team he was or is playing on feel the best about Terrance F. huge lean for KU has been from the get go, but how ever I know we will be fine with Coach Self. As far as Frank goes I agree with Jonathan, love Frank, I feel he will be back. I feel he will do very well over sea's after he graduates, not that he isn't N.B.A caliber, but I think the 1 HUGE issue for him playing N.B.A will be his size love the kid, tough as nails, so proud having him but I'm just afraid his size will not allow it ROCK CHALK ALL DAY LONG BABY

Chris Shaw 4 years, 8 months ago

Good thoughts and points, but that was awful to read through and try to digest.

Mick Allen 4 years, 8 months ago

Ellas and Gerry, don't write Frank off in having an opportunity to play NBA minutes. While I agree he can make a lot of money in Europe and his height won't help him but we were probably likely to say the same about Calvin Murphy, Chris Paul, listed at 6' but I think a stretch like Allen Iverson, Spud Webb, Mugsy Bogue and f/n/u Robison, with the Knicks last year.

Jonathan Allison 4 years, 8 months ago

Also, I would add J.J. Barea of the Mavericks. He's listed at 6'-0" but the eye test tells me that he's shorter than that. And has a similar frame as Fearless Frank, muscular build with short arms.

Jonathan Allison 4 years, 8 months ago

picture of Barea standing next to 6'-2" Luke Ridnour. Looks to me like Barea is 5'-10" max.

http://espn.go.com/nba/player/photos/_/id/3055/photoId/4493009/jj-barea

Harlan Hobbs 4 years, 8 months ago

Lots of good insight today, but I will focus on only two posts.

I agree with Rodney's last post about losses next year. Beyond the seniors who will exhaust their eligibility this coming season, I view Wayne Selden and Cheick Diallo as almost sure things to leave. Then, if Svi and Carlton Bragg have the kind of seasons that come with their lofty rankings, there are 7 key losses.

Some may question my thoughts about Svi and Carlton, but remember that prior to the conference season last year, many were saying that if Kelly Oubre was to leave, it would be to transfer to another school. Nobody thought he was NBA ready, and yet he progressed to the point that he was taken in the middle of the first round. If Svi or Carlton follow this scenario, I won't be surprised.

As has been stated above, a core team of Mason, Graham, Greene, Vick, Lucas, and Coleby is not bad, but to remain at the high level that is expected at KU, a number of fresh bodies will be needed, especially ones that can contribute significantly as freshmen.

I have no doubt that Coach Self and his staff will "reload" effectively as they have always done, but the 2016-2017 season could be our biggest challenge since the 2008 National Championship season.

I also agree totally with Mick regarding Frank Mason. Given his heart, talent, and leadership potential, I would like to think that he has NBA potential despite his relatively small stature. In fact, if he has a junior season that parallels his performance in Korea, he might move to the list of possible departures after this coming season.

Tom Jones 4 years, 8 months ago

If Wayne, Diallo, Bragg and Svi all have the types of seasons that put them on solid footing to be first round draft picks, that means KU will be the best team in the country and have a tremendous shot at playing in Houston if not cutting down the nets. If they can cut down the nets, I will personally go help them all pack for New York and draft night.

Benz Junque 4 years, 8 months ago

I seriously doubt if Bragg will even get enough playing time to leave. And I don't think Svi can improve enough to leave unless he goes back to dodge bullets in his home country. I think we'll have both of them back after next year.

Marius Rowlanski 4 years, 8 months ago

Anybody who cares about KU recruiting should check out the following:

The Hardwood Classic (15U-17U) Jul 23 - 26, 2015 Overland Park, KS • Shawnee, KS

Shannon Gustafson 4 years, 8 months ago

Thanks for the heads up. Okun Fieldhouse (where many of those games are played) is about 2 miles from my house. I actually go there to shoot hoops sometimes when they have open gym. Unfortunately I'll be out of the country during this tournament so I can't go watch any of the games.

Marius Rowlanski 4 years, 8 months ago

Funny all the denials about interest in player recruiting yet it seems to be a constant subject. Me..I'll gladly admit to following all the info I can get about the KU recruiting trail.

Tom Jones 4 years, 8 months ago

It appears that you have a much better grasp of college recruiting than you do of assessing college players and college teams, so...I say, stick with recruiting! ;)

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