Thursday, May 21, 2015

SMU’s Nic Moore to play for KU’s World University Games team

SMU’s Nic Moore dribbles during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game against Connecticut, Sunday, March 1, 2015, in Hartford, Conn. (AP Photo/Jessica Hill)

SMU’s Nic Moore dribbles during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game against Connecticut, Sunday, March 1, 2015, in Hartford, Conn. (AP Photo/Jessica Hill)


Nic Moore, a 5-foot-9, 170-pound senior point guard from SMU, has been added to Kansas University’s World University Games roster, KU coach Bill Self told the Journal-World.

Moore, who is from Winona Lake, Indiana, was the 2014-15 player of the year in the American Athletic Conference after averaging 14.5 points, 5.1 assists, 2.3 rebounds and 1.3 steals a game last season for Larry Brown’s Mustangs.

He hit 42 percent of his shots and 41.6 percent of his threes (77 of 185). Moore scored 20 or more points in nine games and had five or more assists in 21 games. He hit a school-record eight threes in 11 tries en route to 28 points against Houston. He had 24 points against UCLA in the NCAA Tournament. Moore was honorable mention All-America by the Associated Press.

“He is a good player. He’s one of the best guards in the country period,” Self said. “He can play on the ball. He can play off the ball. He’s little, so we’ll have three little guys running around out there sometimes,” Self added of Moore, Frank Mason (5-11) and Devonté Graham (6-2).”

Self explained the reasoning behind extending an offer to SMU’s Moore to play for KU in the tournament in July in South Korea as well as a pair of exhibition games against Canada on June 23 and 26 in Kansas City’s Sprint Center. He’ll also practice with the Jayhawks’ World Games team starting June 8.

“The key for us is we can travel with 12 players (to South Korea). The reason we’re taking a player from another school is because Svi (Mykhailiuk) cannot go (because he is not U.S. citizen) and Brannen (Greene) is not able to compete because of his hip surgery so we’re down to really three perimeter players (Mason, Graham, Wayne Selden).

“With the addition of a potential recruit, if we’re able to do that, that would be four (6-5 LaGerald Vick who has committed to KU and is expected to be on the team once he makes official a reclassifying to the Class of 2015). Then we’re still a perimeter player short so I looked around.

“Of course with the relationship we have with Jank (Tim Jankovich, SMU assistant) and coach Brown (Larry, SMU head coach), they told us all along, ‘Hey if you need anybody, Nic would be a kid who would love to go.’ We get a chance to take arguably the most valuable player in the American Conference and a terrific kid. They (Mustangs) do a lot of the same things we do so he’ll be an easy blend for our guys.”

SMU’s Moore is thrilled to be able to join KU’s World Games team this summer. He, of course, will return to SMU for his senior year following the University Games.

“I was up in the (SMU coaches) office one day and they (Jankovich, Brown) gave me the great news and said I’d have an opportunity playing with Kansas to represent the U.S. and go overseas and play,” Moore said, noting it “was about a week ago.”

“I’ve never been overseas to experience (something like) that, but just the opportunity to play with a great program and represent the USA, I feel like that’s an accomplishment and just feels great,” Moore added.

He doesn’t know any of the KU players ... yet.

“I watch them throughout the season, catch them on TV. It’s a fun group of guys to watch,” Moore said. “I don’t know them personally but watching ‘em on TV, I feel like I know them,” he added laughing.

Of his own game, he said: "I love the game of basketball. I'm always going to play hard. I'm a team player. Regardless of what I do, I just wish the best outcome for the team – and that would be a victory. Me being there is great and I just want to help and be positive, that's if I'm playing or if I'm on the bench. That's just who I am. I'm a team person."

Here’s how the roster currently shapes up for the 12-man KU team: Mykhailiuk, Cheick Diallo (Mali native) and the injured Greene cannot attend, thus the Jayhawks have 10 available players in Mason, Selden, Graham, Jamari Traylor, Landen Lucas, Perry Ellis, Hunter Mickelson, Carlton Bragg, Vick (once he’s in Class of 2015) and Moore. Self is hoping to bring in one more scholarship player, perhaps a transfer, and has said in the past he could fill the final spot or two spots with current walk-ons. Thus it is likely Moore will be the only player added from another school.


Rodney Crain 4 years, 2 months ago

Welcome Nic, glad to have you on the team for the WUG!

Marius Rowlanski 4 years, 2 months ago

I think it's great plus I'm sure Coach Brown helped us land Vick.

Joe Ross 4 years, 2 months ago

Gary: Mykhailuk, Diallo, and Greene cannot attend. But can the former two practice?

Gary Bedore 4 years, 2 months ago

They can be team managers and managers can have limited practice duty like the Scarecrow had last year.

Harlan Hobbs 4 years, 2 months ago

Sounds like a nice young man. Glad to have him on the team.

Andrew Holmes 4 years, 2 months ago

Would have loved to not have had to add anyone to the roster from another team, but I'm glad that we got a kid from Larry's team. This is a great opportunity for our team and for the KU basketball team to represent their country. Though the guys are going to gain momentum and chemistry from this trip, I think this is going to be a 2 steps forward 1/2 step back type of trip meaning, I believe our team will be 1 1/2 steps ahead of everyone to begin the season. The only reason I think KU will take a 1/2 step back is because the team will have to add Diallo, Svi and Greene to the mix which will take some time getting used to. More so for Diallo than Svi and Green, but still. Cannot wait for the tournament to start and see how the team performs. Rock Chalk.

Mike Riches 4 years, 2 months ago

Very classy move by Coach Brown to give this young man an opportunity to play for his country. So many coaches would only think about their own program and the potential risk of injury, but Coach Brown and his staff are looking at the bigger picture. I hope our guys can learn a thing or two from Nic and I hope he has a blast playing for Team USA!!

Shannon Gustafson 4 years, 2 months ago

Good to know who we're adding, I'd been wondering for some time what school would allow someone to play with us and I never even considered SMU...not it makes perfect sense in retrospect.

It seems a bit odd to me that we're bringing in a 5'9" kid to replace the lack of two 6'6"+ kids (Greene/Svi) but maybe Self sees Bragg filling in at that spot when height is needed defensively? Clearly Self knows more than I so I'll take his decision as being the "right" one.

Dirk Medema 4 years, 2 months ago

He's also a good outside shot replacing an outside shooter, but also a creator (that Self loves) that allows Mason and Graham to slide. I also wouldn't be surprised to see Self allow Perry even more perimeter freedom than he had during the second half of last season. It will be interesting to see how he is expanding his game.

Jay Scott 4 years, 2 months ago

Perry needs to learn how to shoot a jumper instead of that Jr High Girl's set shot if he's going to see time at the 3..

Suzi Marshall 4 years, 2 months ago

Wow! Welcome aboard Nick Moore. Now I'm even more curious about the back story with Vick. I'm sure it's not much of anything but nevertheless ....

Anyone surprised Self did not add a player from WSU like VanVleet or even Frankamp?

Robert Brock 4 years, 2 months ago

She should have said Van Vleet and Baker. We could learn from them - after all, they schooled our guards just a couple of months ago. Bada bing!

Bryce Landon 4 years, 2 months ago

We don't need a player from WSU, but we do need a certain coach from WSU who can actually motivate his players to give 110%.

Shannon Gustafson 4 years, 2 months ago

This may be a surprise to you but it's a lot easier to motivate the "underdog" than the perennial favorite. It's almost like being the underdog is all the motivation they need. Maybe you think all of those underdogs in the tourney either get the upset or nearly get the upset because their coach is a better motivator, not because they inherently have more motivation and "nothing to lose" vs the higher seed who has everything to lose and nothing to gain (if they win, everyone says they should have anyways).

This is only compounded by how KU, Duke, etc. ALWAYS gets everyone's best shot. They want to shock the wonder KU and (even more so Duke) have so many early round losses.

A. J. Daggett 4 years, 2 months ago

Why don't you just become a Wichita State fan?

Joseph Bullock 4 years, 2 months ago

Shannon, here is the deal with Suzi! Suzi, Everyone (accept Shannon-LOL) knows you love Frankamp, but get over it. He is a quitter, and a guy who, along with his dad, does not know the meaning of 'working for your playing time'! Also, instead of leaving before school year, they waited to transfer, at a time when we could not even get another Scholarship player! What a dirty thing to do! Get a clue!

Marius Rowlanski 4 years, 2 months ago

Say what you want but Frankamp isn't a quitter. Going ONLY by the past two NCAA tournaments, Wichita is perhaps the better team.

I don't think Wichita is even close to beating us this year but Conner will have to compete w/Fred VanVleet PG and Evan Wessel (who shot lights out against KU in the NCAA) for playing time. WSU might have a better backcourt than KU does so it's not as if he can just walk into a starting role.

Suzi Marshall 4 years, 2 months ago

Joseph - You got the Frankamp this wrong. After a couple of inquires post departure, I quickly came to the conclusion both parties were much better off with his departure. I deplored his timing.

My question was a half-truth with an element of deception. VanVleet or Baker would have been nice additions to the KU WUGs, whereas the Frankamp reference was intended as a joking deception. The larger question would be Self's relationship with the WSU vs SMU programs. I love Brown and by extension Moore, therefore very happy he's on the team. At the same time, VanVleet and Baker are great kids from the State of Kansas. It seems a bit like a cake or ice cream for desert discussion.

Regardless, it's Self's team and call.

Tony Bandle 4 years, 2 months ago

I prefer pie but cake is OK too. Ice Cream, however, is it's own special food group and the secret to a long life. My 93 year old father subsists solely on naps, Mickey D cheeseburgers, crossword puzzles and ice cream and he is 10 times sharper than his oldest, 67 year old Jayhawk son.

The secret with ice cream is combing the correct flavors with the proper toppings. Never put chocolate syrup on chocalate...too redundant and they will cancel each other out. However, marshmellow or coconut are fine choices. Chocolate, however, goes great on strawberry, peach or even pistacio.

Another tip, neopolitan, because of the three ice cream flavors is better without any toppings however a banana makes a great complementary flavor and texture. Nuts, of course, are almost always acceptable whether it be crushed pecans, peanuts or almonds.

Shannon Gustafson 4 years, 2 months ago

I'd put money down that Baker & VanVleet would have turned down an invitation (not that we'd ever send them one anyway).

Joseph Bullock 4 years, 2 months ago

ha ha ha Tony! i love some ice cream and cake. Sometimes I think we are all crazy, on this dang site!
Suzi, OK. Yes, his timing was terrible, and like I said, was obviously intentional, and I am quite sure that was his dad's doing! About taking someone from Wichita State, I think that might be hard to do, if you did not really recruit them hard, and it also would help them learn more about our system, even though we all know Frankamp told them everything he knew about our system, and all of our players. Also, I didn't know Van Vleet was a Kansas kid. He is a great player (as is Baker)! I also have absolutely no problem with us taking one of LB's players, but I didn't follow SMU this past season, so I know nothing about Moore, except what I have read in this article, but he must be really good, or we would not be taking him! I do want to make a comment on Thon Maker, as I know some here, like him, and some here, don't. If he is eligible to play, that would mean he has been 'Cleared', by the NCAA Clearinghouse, which would mean his Grades are OK for him to play. If that is the case, I would love to have him, and obviously Coach self, and his Staff, want him, or they would not still be recruiting him. My point is this: Most top rated players, and their AAU Coaches, want their kids to be 'One and Dones', so if he helps up get a National Championship, I'm fine with that. I know he plays on the perimeter a lot, but he would have a clear understanding, of what Coach Self and Staff, want, and expect out of him, before he would be able to come to Kansas! With his height, length, and athleticism, he would be an incredible 'Rim Protector', and even if he plays on the perimeter sometimes, think of how easily he could see over the top of the defense, to make great passes (and he is a very good passer)! He might even do better with his grades, with the Tutoring Programs we have at Kansas, and may surprise a lot of people, Academically (I hope-LOL)! Again, I'm talking, very possible, National Championship, if we add this young man, or at least a very probably 'Final Four'!

Earle Brown 4 years, 2 months ago

Marty and Conner Frankamp are two of the finest people I've met. Conner transferred because he thinks it's in his best interest. Though I was disappointed, I support Conner's decision and hope he has a great career at WSU. Meanwhile, I hope KU wins the National Championship every year. As for the timing of the transfer, it wasn't ideal for anyone but Conner decided to transfer as soon as he knew he wasn't going to play as much as he wanted, and he wanted to ensure he didn't lose a full year of eligibility. I'm focused on the great team KU should have this year while recognizing that WSU may be a Top 10 team, too.

Shannon Gustafson 4 years, 2 months ago

He still timed it so he'd have to sit out 1.5 years (all of last season, plus until Christmas this coming season). Had he transferred at a normal time (after the previous season, before enrolling in school the next year) he would have only sat 1 year.

Jacob Zutterman 4 years, 2 months ago

I'm kind of surprised the addition will be a point guard instead of a small forward, especially since our two SF's won't be participating. Obviously a good player and I'm glad to have him, just surprised

Joe Ross 4 years, 2 months ago

Mykhailuk is a guard. Diallo is a power forward. The only small forward not participating is Brannen Greene.

Suzi Marshall 4 years, 2 months ago

Tony - After accruing various sets of data tonight, I completely agree with your scientic hypothisesi regarding Ice Cream's unique food group. The Neopolitan extract is an excellent politically correct decision to avoid any hint of favoritism, especially where none is possible.

By the way, I would comment directly under your post but the formatting on my computer no longer allows that option. Very strange and suspect Brett has something to do with my KUSports link going awol.

Joseph Bullock 4 years, 2 months ago

Thanks for the heads up on the Hoiberg article, Joe Ross. It will be a really hard decision for him, but if he really wants an NBA job, he will never get a more perfect offer. But I bet Iowa State, behind closed doors, if getting together, a Greg Marshall type offer, regardless of what the say, publicly! He also love his players, so it will be real interesting, how it plays out! I wish him the best-if he goes to the Bulls, that is! LOL

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