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Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Kansas basketball awarded academic recognition

Kansas head coach Bill Self loosens his tie with a smile as he leaves the court following the Jayhawks' 85-78 win over Oklahoma on Monday, Jan. 19, 2015 at Allen Fieldhouse.

Kansas head coach Bill Self loosens his tie with a smile as he leaves the court following the Jayhawks' 85-78 win over Oklahoma on Monday, Jan. 19, 2015 at Allen Fieldhouse.

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Kansas University’s men’s basketball team has earned its eighth-straight NCAA Academic Performance Program (APP) Public Recognition Award, KU and the NCAA announced Wednesday.

KU was one of 39 teams to be recognized for achieving Academic Progress Rate (APR) success in the top 10 percent of all NCAA Division One men’s hoops programs.

Six other Div. One programs have as many NCAA APP Public Recognition Awards. The total is just short of the combined total number of recognitions by other Big 12 members (10) over the last 10 years. KU and Texas (7) — who each received recognition Wednesday — combine for 15 of current Big 12 members’ 18 total APR honors in men’s basketball, with West Virginia (2) and Baylor (1) also earning honors in years past.

The APR, according to a KU release, provides a real-time look at a team’s academic success each semester by tracking the academic progress of each student-athlete on scholarship. The APR accounts for eligibility, retention and graduation, providing a measure of each team’s academic performance. The most recent multi-year APRs are based on scores from the 2010-11, 2011-12, 2012-13 and 2013-14 academic years.

APRs for all teams, including access to postseason play and penalties for low-performing teams, will be released May 27. Kansas is the only Big 12 school to receive an NCAA Public Recognition Award in each of the 10 years of the program. The Jayhawks have had a total of 25 teams honored with Public Recognition Awards (for multi-year academic success).

The four-year APR scores of all of KU’s 18 sports programs are expected to be well above the requisite score of 930 established by the NCAA for good standing, KU officials indicated Wednesday.

Aldrich a free agent: Former KU center Cole Aldrich, 26, is a free agent this offseason. It’s good timing for the 6-foot-11, 245-pound Bloomington, Minnesota native as he’s coming off his best of five campaigns in the NBA.

Aldrich averaged 5.5 points (off 47.8 percent shooting; 78.1 percent free throwing) and 5.5 rebounds a game in 61 games for the New York Knicks.

Aldrich, who played a career-best 16.0 minutes per game and started 16 games, had 24 points off 11 of 16 shooting and 15 rebounds in the season-finale against Detroit.

Other big games: 12 points, 19 rebounds vs. Portland; 19 points, 14 boards vs. Orlando; 17 points, 13 boards vs. Utah; 11 points, 14 boards vs. Detroit; 18 points, 7 boards vs. Sacramento; 13 points, 10 boards vs. Chicago.

“It was a good year for me personally. I was able to get on the court and show I can play,” Aldrich told Minnesota TV station KSTP this week.

“It was really my first year of getting out on the court and playing extended minutes. My turn has come. I played well. I have all the confidence in the world,” added Aldrich, still missing the one front tooth knocked out during his days at KU.

Aldrich was asked if he’d consider playing for his hometown Minnesota Timberwolves.

“Of course. I think of the Timberwolves as Kevin Garnett going to the conference finals. It would be a lot of fun,” he said.

The Aldrich interview is available here: http://ljw.bz/1LnkjOk.

Mysterious Maker: It is not known whether No. 9-ranked (by Rivals.com) Thon Maker, a 7-foot senior center from Orangeville Prep in Mono, Ontario, will be playing college basketball starting second semester of the 2015-16 season.

“I won’t finish (coursework) until December so it (his recruitment) is kind of standing still right now. I finish in December and I can reclassify (from Class of 2016 to 2015) if I want to,” Maker told Peegs.com on Tuesday.

He said coaches from KU, Kentucky, Indiana, Michigan, Michigan State and others have expressed interest.

What nobody has been discussing regarding Maker is the fact his academic credentials would have to go through the NCAA Clearinghouse after high school graduation in December and that many times is a drawn-out process.

If he chose KU, for example, he quite possibly would not be available until after the start of Big 12 play and would be leaving school immediately after the season to prepare for the 2016 NBA Draft. That’s a possible three-month stay on campus.

“It’s a little stressful because your mind is running. You have people telling you to hurry up and stuff like that,” Maker told Peegs.com. “But I have to be ready, so I have to finish my credits. I can’t play if I don’t finish my credits. I really have to focus on that part. In terms of the basketball side, I let my guardian handle the coaches so I can focus on getting better, so it’s not always stressful.”

Of factors in picking a school for the one semester, he said: “It’s about having a good relationship, but not just with the coaches and the players. It’s the community, the surroundings, having the right people around you.”

Comments

Joe Ross 3 years, 8 months ago

Kansas should back off of Maker if they haven't already. We need a solid multiyear player to learn the system and be available for '16-'17. The only reason to pursue him is if Coach Self thinks that adding Maker would make the difference in winning a National Title vs. not, by way of Maker's talent level and fresh legs. But Kansas needs to concern itself with which bigs will fill out the roster after this coming season.

Rodney Crain 3 years, 8 months ago

Agree Joe. The down side far out weighs the up side with Maker.

KJ Quartermaine 3 years, 8 months ago

Joe, aren't you the same guy featured in those "Captain Obvious" commercials? Don't give up your day job

Joe Ross 3 years, 8 months ago

You might be on to something, KJ. Im definitely picking up a similarity around the eyes. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jW1d4jCbrsY

Tony Bandle 3 years, 8 months ago

Thon "Better Look Quick or I'm Gone" Maker is probably headed to UK...they need big man help with LaVa possibly heading toward the NCAA's academic eligibility investigation wasteland ....oh wait, Thon may be riding shotgun with him!!

MR.Vick...a] stay in 2016?, b] come out in 2015 and redshirt?, c] come out in 2015, play a year then redshirt?, d] come out in 2015 and just start playing?

Aaron Paisley 3 years, 8 months ago

Maker should've stayed in the 2016 class. There is no point in recruiting him at this point.

Jonathan Allison 3 years, 8 months ago

seems like he's banking on reclassifying to 2015 so that he's eligible for the 2016 NBA Draft. I don't know the specifics of the rules, but it seems to me that one year removed from High School graduation should mean "one year removed from High School graduation". Thus he shouldn't be eligible until the 2017 draft if he doesn't graduate until December 2015.

He most likely watched the Dante Exum recruitment closely to see how a player could still go high in the draft even while sitting out a full year from competition.

Aaron Paisley 3 years, 8 months ago

I understand what he's doing and why he's doing it, I just don't think he's making a smart decision and this decision is ultimately going to hurt his draft stock for 2016 by playing less than half a season of college ball because it will take him time to adjust and he may not do it well.

Jonathan Allison 3 years, 8 months ago

my take is that he probably knows that there's a good chance that he won't play at all in college and he is wagering on it not hurting his draft stock. Just like Dante Exum took a year off from competitive basketball to prepare for the draft and it didn't hurt his draft stock.

Joe Ross 3 years, 8 months ago

I agree with Aaron 100%. I dont think Maker will play himself into being a lottery pick this year. He can reclassify...fine! But after playing one semester somewhere, he should enroll for a full year at the same institution to really get comfortable playing against a higher level of competition. He did not play great in the Nike Hoop Summit, where he almost looked like he didnt belong among the other players. While he sits the first semester out the guys ahead of him are going to pad their advantage by honing their skills and being coached in the college game. This is not an ideal situation for Maker; in fact, it would be a very poor decision because he could be a lottery pick in '16-'17. There is no rush!

Jeff Coffman 3 years, 8 months ago

When did they start using the term "Guardian" instead of "Agent"?

Joe Ross 3 years, 8 months ago

+10

If youre serious, thats the best conspiracy theory Ive ever heard of. If youre joking thats the funniest comment Ive read here in a while. Kudos either way!

Jonathan Allison 3 years, 8 months ago

next year after Thon Maker and Ed Smith are both rich beyond their wildest dreams, there will be an influx of aspiring sports agents traveling the globe trying to adopt the next "can't miss prospect" and bring them to an American high school.

Jonathan Allison 3 years, 8 months ago

I'm sure that Bill Self will be suspicious when Rodney Blackstock shows up as the legal guardian of a kid who's name he cannot even pronounce from a nation that he can't even find on a map.

Phil Leister 3 years, 8 months ago

There's no such thing as the NCAA Clearinghouse anymore. FYI

Freedman Moor 3 years, 8 months ago

"Kansas basketball awarded academic recognition"

The REAL streak continues!!

Freedman Moor 3 years, 8 months ago

I guess this reflects the truth of the matter. People care about dunks, three-pointers, and Wins. As long as the players are eligible, I guess, people really don't care.

"The total is just short of the combined total number of recognitions by other Big 12 members (10) over the last 10 years." I come from a family of educators. This means something to me.

John Pritchett 3 years, 8 months ago

I'm not a big fan of OAD to begin with, but I'm definitely opposed to OHAD (1/2-and-done). Why waste resources on a kid who'll only be around for a semester? I'd rather give a scholarship to a walk-on.

Len Shaffer 3 years, 8 months ago

John, that makes sense for teams that can recruit like KU. But for desperate teams that can't recruit worth a damn like Kentucky, they don't have much of a choice.

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