Saturday, June 25, 2016

Vick making strides

Red Team guard Lagerald Vick and Blue Team guard Josh Jackson compete for a loose ball during the Bill Self basketball camp alumni scrimmage, Wednesday, June 8, 2016 at the Horejsi Athletic Center.

Red Team guard Lagerald Vick and Blue Team guard Josh Jackson compete for a loose ball during the Bill Self basketball camp alumni scrimmage, Wednesday, June 8, 2016 at the Horejsi Athletic Center.


Several Kansas University basketball players past and present paraded through a door connecting the Jayhawks’ practice facility to Horejsi Center, home of Bill Self’s weekly campers games.

Leading the way onto the court where he quickly located a ball and was the first to start loosening up was sophomore Lagerald Vick. The 6-foot-5, 180-pound guard from Memphis wasted no time hoisting some shots in warmups before a June 15 intrasquad scrimmage in which he scored 23 points off 9-of-17 shooting, including five threes. A week earlier, an eager Vick exploded for 29 points off 10-of-13 shooting, including seven threes.

He agreed with a reporter’s assertion that he was “ready to play” on both occasions, itching to show hundreds of youths in the stands — and his teammates — what he could do.

“Definitely. I just take it as a real game. No off days,” said Vick, determined to earn significant minutes his second season at KU.

“No off days” to Vick means scrimmaging with his teammates daily as well as on his own.

“Coach T (Kurtis Townsend) told me to get in the gym every day and make 150 shots. I can’t shoot over 300 (for minimum of 50 percent makes). I’m shooting every night,” Vick said.

He also is a regular in the weight room.

“I came here 150 something. Now I’m 180 something,” said Vick, who indeed put on 30 pounds in one year. “I was working on my upper body. Hudy (Andrea, strength coach) put me on shakes and different things. It’s a long process. I eat four times a day. I drink four or five (protein shakes).”

Vick’s steady progress has not escaped the eyes of coach Bill Self.

“He didn’t get a chance to play a lot last year. He is freakishly athletic, looks like a greyhound out on the court,” Self said. “He moves gracefully, has improved his stroke. He has a chance to impact our team in a big, big way this year. He’s probably as improved as any player on our team.”

Vick has heard his coach’s words of praise, ones that admittedly have helped boost his confidence.

“Looking back where I came from, I didn’t have a big name. I take that as (now) having a big name,” said Vick, who arrived at KU out of Memphis Douglass High as’s No. 33-rated player nationally.

“I’m way more confident than last year. Last year at practice I’d listen to what the older guys were telling me. I knew my time would come.”

He’s not backing down from Josh Jackson, KU’s 6-8 freshman wing from Detroit who enters college as’s No. 1-rated player.

“I’m learning off him. He’s learning off me,” said Vick, who this summer has roomed with Jackson, Carlton Bragg Jr. and Evan Maxwell. “Practicing against Svi (Mykhailiuk), Devonté (Graham), B.G. (Brannen Greene), sometimes Frank (last season), it helped me develop,” Vick noted. “I came here and I knew defense was the key, the thing I had to work on. I’m working on it every day.”

Asked if he envisions a bigger role this year, Vick, who averaged 2.1 points per game while logging 4.8 minutes in 19 games, said simply, “Definitely, most definitely.”

White shocks Huskers by leaving: Former KU wing Andrew White III will leave Nebraska as a graduate transfer and be immediately eligible at his transfer destination during the 2016-17 season, coach Tim Miles told the Lincoln Journal-Star. The paper said it is believed White “is seeking a bigger stage to play his final season, with a guarantee to play in the NCAA Tournament and impress NBA scouts on a team that uses White in a way he believes will enhance his professional resume.”

White, 6-7 from Richmond, Va., averaged 16.6 points and 5.9 rebounds a game his junior season. He hit 41.2 percent of his threes. Nebraska will play KU on Dec. 10 in Allen Fieldhouse. White’s brother, Andrien, made the Conference USA all-freshman team last season at Charlotte.

Newman slated to visit: Former Mississippi State guard Malik Newman, who visited Oregon over the weekend, is set to visit KU on Tuesday afternoon, sources told the J-W on Saturday night. Newman has also visited Miami and Western Kentucky and also has North Carolina State on his list. He averaged 11.3 points, 2.2 assists, and 2.8 rebounds per game as a freshman and made 21 starts for his father’s alma mater.

More on Ellis, Mavs: Former KU forward Perry Ellis tweeted on Saturday: “Excited to play with the @dallasmavs for summer league! Thanks for the opportunity!”

“You want to get drafted, obviously, but you have to stay positive, stay up,” the Wichita native, who was not selected in the NBA Draft, added to the Wichita Eagle. “I felt like the workouts went really well, but when it came to the draft I really had no clue what would happen or that it would turn out the way it did. Now, I’m just excited for the summer league with Dallas. The coach there (Rick Carlisle) really likes me and it puts me in a good position to be successful.”


Dirk Medema 5 years, 6 months ago

30 LBs is some nice weight gain for a 6-5 baller. That should help him this year. The biggest thing that will help him tho is running O and playing sound D. Watched the UK game again last night, and was amazed at how quickly the game swung when he entered and made bad O decisions, and questionable D execution.

My guess is that this year will be an improvement, but it won't be until next year that he gets to shine. Hopefully, he's patient, or at least more patient than AWIII. At least he graduated, but did he really think Lincoln was going to provide much of a stage?

Marius Rowlanski 5 years, 6 months ago

You're comments on Andrew White are a little off. He wasn't going to get anymore playing time his 3rd year then he did his 2nd. At Nebraska he was the Big Ten’s sixth-leading scorer (16.6 points) and NU’s top rebounder (5.9) from last season. Also shot 41% from the 3. Honorable Mention All Big 10.. But now that he is transferring from Nebraska, we can resign him! Too funny!

And this is the year Vick breaks out - putting Josh on the bench!

Not completely serious but Vick will have a good year.

Dee Shaw 5 years, 6 months ago

I love Vicks game. He's got the IT factor.

Steve Macy 5 years, 6 months ago

I am looking for big thing from him this year, he can back up two positions, RCJH, I can't wait.

Mallory Briggans 5 years, 6 months ago

We don't have the luxury of waiting on Vick to wait 1 more year. BG is gone and Wayne also so only having Frank Devonte Svi and Josh on the perimeter Coach Self cant afford to wear down the starters because he doesn't think Vick is ready .Putting on 30 pounds shows his commitment to get stronger Staying in the gym working on his shot will pay dividends and his understanding that he has to be strong on the defensive end he knows that also.Coach stated that Vick was one of the better players on the team last year but ofcourse it was a numbers thing as to why he saw limited time . We can look at the camp scrimmage games at which he scored 29 and 19 or something like that as a positive .....He scored !!!!! Had he not scored only a couple buckets in each game then I would think there might be some concern ...But I think he will step up because we need him to

Jay Scott 5 years, 6 months ago

If he's needed this year for more than just a few minutes it's a bad sign.

Kurt Eskilson 5 years, 6 months ago

Every year there is someone about whom it is said "If (name) gets more than a few minutes it's a bad sign." Early last year, that would have been Lucas. And yet, his emergence turned out to be a really good thing. It's never a bad sign if someone's improvement means they're shouldering other people out of their way for time.

Jay Scott 5 years, 6 months ago

The smart people expected Lucas to emerge.

It will be a bad thing if Jackson and Svi aren't playing 30 mins a game. There is no plateau that anyone can reasonably imagine that Vick achieves where he shoulders past the projected #1 pick in next year's draft, who most agree is more ready to succeed at the college level than Wiggins or a projected lotto pick who is a junior and has tons of international experience.

If Vick gets minutes, bad things have indeed happened.

Marius Rowlanski 5 years, 6 months ago

Agree Jay. Vick should be needed only in case of an injury. That said, I think Vick could get 10-15 mpg and will be in Self's final 7/8 man rotation.

Aaron Paisley 5 years, 6 months ago

Vick will be the 5th option in the back court, he'll play under 10 mpg most of the time barring injury to someone.

Benz Junque 5 years, 6 months ago

Just a reminder that last year's "5th option on the perimeter" (after Selden, Mason, Graham and Svi) was Brannen Greene, who was an impactful player who was in games at key times.

Marius Rowlanski 5 years, 6 months ago

Good reminder. I believe Vick will have a larger impact than Greene due to consistency. Greene was usually all or nothing from the 3 while Vick can do more on offense than shoot the three and will also be a better defensive player.

Jay Scott 5 years, 6 months ago

Hopefully Vick can get enough minutes this coming season to be ready to take on a major role in his junior year. Maybe a short term injury to one of the main rotation or some foul problems in a few games will force him into crunch time.

If he plays more tha a handful of minutes per game in any other circumstances, something will have gone badly...

Mallory Briggans 5 years, 6 months ago

Jay Scott good morning . So are you saying Vick should get minutes but not major minutes...

Harlan Hobbs 5 years, 6 months ago

I think he is, which is perfectly logical to me. Major minutes would be as many as 20 or more a game. If he plays that much, it would have to be because of injury to others or he really is better than them. However, Frank, Devonte, Josh, and Svi will get the majority of minutes at that position.

Mallory Briggans 5 years, 6 months ago

I m not disagreeing with anyone. I think by default he will play because of Greene being gone . No I don't see him getting major minutes . Its when he plays as well.. not mop up duty in a blow out. He has progressed enough to play and although shorter than Greene I think he has more upside than Greene..... I mean between the ears .....again given our roster when need contributions from everyone.

Jay Scott 5 years, 6 months ago

Jay's fearless playing time prediction -

Mason, Graham, Svi, Jackson - 30ish each

Lucas, Bragg - 25ish each

Coleby, Azubuike - 10-15ish each

Vick 5-10ish

Lightfoot - Mop up

Adam Tyler 5 years, 6 months ago

Spot on.

I think Lightfoot's role could increase if Coleby's knee does not get back to 100% soon.

Jay Scott 5 years, 6 months ago

It could.. Or those minutes could go to Svi. He's about the same size and could guard smaller 4s fine. Could they guard him?

Marius Rowlanski 5 years, 6 months ago

I don't really see Lightfoot and Colbey competing for minutes as they don't play the same position. If Colbey is unable to go, Lucas and Udoka will get his minutes.

Suzi Marshall 5 years, 6 months ago

This is also my expectations. However, if Vick hits anywhere near 47% from 3-land, he can end up with 10-12 mpg.

Gerry Butler 5 years, 6 months ago

hmmm, Suzi, guess my post on here about Ku not having any interest in Newman at the time was correct- - -no errors afterall, AND just like I said after Thornton made it clear he wasn't coming to Ku now like I was given information now they are interested in recruiting Newman, BUT will continue to recruit point guards for 2017. It all played out just like I was told, no interest until Thornton said no, now they are invested in Newman

Suzi Marshall 5 years, 6 months ago

After what you said, I figured that was playing out.

William Swinton-Ginsberg 5 years, 6 months ago

I generally agree with the distribution other than Vick but the math geek in me has to point out your prediction leaves about 20-25 minutes of playing time per game unassigned. I'm thinking Vick will play pretty much what BG played this year so about 12-15~ mpg. I also think Jackson won't play nearly that much for the first half of the season. At first some of those minutes will be split between Vick and Svi and then as jackson gets experience he should hopefully get more playing time by conference play. The only time we've seen a frosh get big minutes from day one was with Wiggins and that squad had nowhere near the backcourt experience we have now. I think JJ is very good and will probably have some growing pains early (Like Oubre) but I think his competitive spirit and leadership will help him through that process.

Jay Scott 5 years, 6 months ago

The minutes add up to 200.

No, Vick won't compete with Svi for minutes, Svi is far more talented and experienced. Jackson is as good as Wiggins, likely better, at this point. He'll play a full rotation load.

Marius Rowlanski 5 years, 6 months ago

1-3 gets 120 mpg and there are 5 players vying for those minutes. Small ball could add another 10-15 mpg max.

Minutes will be a premium but Vick could very well be the only returning player and Self knows he needs to get Vick ready for 2017.

I'm sticking w/10-15 mpg but Vick will need to preform.

Aaron Paisley 5 years, 6 months ago

Svi won't play 30 mpg. The back court (1-3) has 120 available minutes for 5 guys and you assigned 125-130 minutes in the back court. The first guard off the bench for KU has historically been closer to the 15 to minute range. With KU's lack of depth this year, that number can probably be bumped up to 20-25 mpg for for Svi which leaves 5-10 for Vick.

I also think we'll also probably see Bragg lead the team in minutes somewhere in the 30-35 range because KU doesn't haveuch depth at that spot. Coleby likely see most if those bench minutes, but he's also not a great perimeter oriented big and is better inside of 20'.

Jay Scott 5 years, 6 months ago

Svi and Jackson will both see minutes at the small ball "4"...

No big in the Bill Self Era has averaged those kind of minutes. Bragg won't play more than 30.

Marius Rowlanski 5 years, 6 months ago

Not a lot different but I think Vick will grab more minutes (10-15) and Bragg will also get more minutes as the competition at the 4 spot is probably the thinnest. For Vick to get over the 10 min. mark all he needs to do is grab a couple of minutes from Graham, Svi and Jackson.

Mallory Briggans 5 years, 6 months ago

I hope to get more out of Coleby .....But I can live with your minutes distribution Jay ......I think Vick will get more than 5 Again if he does it will probably come out of Svi s minutes .But we will see I still wouldn't count out Vick .

Mallory Briggans 5 years, 6 months ago

Interesting that AWIII is transferring as a graduate transfer. Has a player left and gone back to his original school Players have left and went to a junior college for eligibility reasons and returned to their original school ...White wants to go to a tournament bound team. White had good numbers on a not so good Nebraska team in the BIG 10 so he faired well against good competition ....He had a not so eventful career at KU .....and him going elsewhere doesn't guarantee him a starting role maybe minutes but who knows ....

Jonathan Allison 5 years, 6 months ago

more likely is White transferring to ISU than to KU, but my official guess would be someone more like Maryland playing close to home for Turg. Or possibly his hometown VCU if he doesn't have interest from a proven winner in a major conference. Another possibility would be Wake Forest, however, they are no more a lock for the NCAAs than Nebraska

Tony Bandle 5 years, 6 months ago

I am somewhat with Jay on this. Unless there is a unique circumstance [foul trouble, injury,discipline issues, alien abduction, gypsy kidnapping, etc.] anything over 5 minutes a game might be red flag.

The chances of AWIII coming back to KU are as about as remote as the State of Kansas balancing it's budget in the next 24 hours!!

Mallory Briggans 5 years, 6 months ago

I don't see White coming back either....but you are also saying Vick should accept not playing his sophomore year.....He has waited his turn and given Self typically plays. 5 guards 3 starters and 2 reserves to give Vick 5 minutes .still don't see it. We say we want system players willing to wait then sitting them 2 years and expect them to have a magical junior year .You only get better by playing....e.g Landen Lucas.....Its way to early to say who should play and who shouldn't and all will have a chance to prove their worth on the court. If heaven forbid there is an injury it would be Mason only because of the ways he plays....If anything else keep your starters fresh.....if no other reason Vick would get more than 5 minutes The math is simple ....You played 5 guards last year....Lost 2 Seldon and Greene ....added Josh so now want to subtract Vick ......Good luck with all that .

Colby Hebert 5 years, 6 months ago

Vick might be the most freakish athlete we have. It says 6'5 but he is also LONG. He could play 1-3...

Mallory Briggans 5 years, 6 months ago

A better question what has he done to NOT let him get minutes .You need a player that can play multiple positions That's where his minutes will come

Jay Scott 5 years, 6 months ago

What he hasn't done is get enough experience or be enough talented. On another team, he would play more.

Aaron Paisley 5 years, 6 months ago

Vick plays the 2-3. His handles suck for a PG so that's not happening. Svi can play 1-3 and has already shown he's a capable player against D1 competition so he'll be the first guard off the bench and Vick will be the second one.

Mallory Briggans 5 years, 6 months ago

Jay I agree with you on Jackson. There is no way Jackson will be spoon feed and worked into the offense . The learning curve for Jackson is no where near what Diallo s was so he will be in there without a doubt. Self will play Josh because he is that good and 3 straight years with a top recruit coming in and not playing wont help in recruiting either.This season for Svi will likely be his last .Coming in there was talk about his draft stock having value then last year the talk died down. Looking at this years NBA draft the number of Foreign players were quite noticeable so Svi may get more minutes and trust from Self

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