Originally published October 24, 2015 at 03:26p.m., updated October 24, 2015 at 05:12p.m.
Mitch Lightfoot, a 6-foot-9, 210-pound senior power forward from Gilbert (Arizona) Christian High, has orally committed to play basketball at Kansas University next season.
Lightfoot, who averaged 17.9 points, 9.7 rebounds and 4.8 blocks a game last season for Arizona’s Div. II state championship team, made the announcement after the slam dunk contest at the Arizona Preps Fall Showcase in Glendale, Arizona.
Rivals.com's No. 117-rated player chose KU over Arizona, Stanford, Utah and St. John’s.
Lightfoot, who calls himself a lifelong KU fan, was born in Kansas City, Missouri, moving to Arizona when he was 6. He lived in Tucson until last year when the family moved to Gilbert.
“My sights have always been on Kansas. It’s where I started and that’s where I’m going to finish,” said Lightfoot, who decommitted from New Mexico last April once it became apparent he had emerged as a big-time prospect following the state-title season.
“I met with my coach,” he said of AAU coach John Ortega and "he said, ‘What do you want out of this (re-opening recruitment)?’ I said, ‘I want to play at Kansas,’’’ Lightfoot said. “It’s been my goal since I knew what basketball was, ever since then. I’ve been working my butt off to try to get there. To all the kids sitting in the stands watching the Jayhawks, wanting to be a Jayhawk, you can definitely do it,” Lightfoot added.
Lightfoot — he said he has “aunts, uncles, cousins, a ton of family back there (in KC area),” — said his official visit solidified his decision to accept Bill Self’s scholarship offer. He said he made his decision official a couple days ago.
“My thing was I took all these visits. I was going to go where I felt comfortable. That was by far, Kansas. I felt like I was home there and it is home,” said Lightfoot, who also is a Chiefs fan (“we had season tickets for 20 years”) and Royals fan (“I watched the game last night).”
More on the commitment at kusports.com and in Sunday’s Journal-World.