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Wednesday, September 14, 2016

KU basketball again makes cut for 5-star forward Billy Preston

Kansas University basketball recruiting

Kansas University basketball recruiting

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To Beatles fans, Billy Preston is the unheralded, jovial piano player who tickled the keys on several tracks on the Let It Be and Abbey Road albums.

To Kansas basketball fans, Billy Preston is one of the most sought after players in the 2017 recruiting class, a 6-foot-9, 220-pound, five-star forward from Oak Hill Academy.

Ranked No. 8 in his class by Rivals.com, the non-piano-playing Preston on Tuesday announced an updated Final 5 on his Twitter page.

Preston previously had trimmed his finalists to four schools, but the updated list grew by one and included two new programs and the absence of another.

Indiana, Kansas, Maryland, NC State and USC made the latest cut, with Indiana and NC State being the new additions and Arizona falling off.

Like many of the other top talents in the 2017 class, Preston appeared in the Under Armour Elite 24 game in August and told Rivals.com’s Matt Moreno, of goazcats.com, earlier that month that finding a place where physical development would be guaranteed would play a big role in his recruitment. While most schools have solid strength and conditioning staffs, few have the proven track record of Kansas, with Andrea Hudy, year after year, taking raw, undeveloped athletes and turning them into physical specimens ready for the rigors of the NBA.

“I'm thinking that I'm 230 now,” Preston told Moreno. “So if I become all muscle, I can become a beast. So, that's really what I'm look toward for the future."

According to 247 Sports, Preston was in town on an unofficial visit Jan. 13 and was offered a scholarship two weeks later. KU assistant Jerrance Howard is listed as the lead recruiter for Preston, who like his 1960s musical namesake, always seems to have a smile on his face.

Sexton eyeing early decision

Collin Sexton, one of the top point guards in the Class of 2017, recently told Adam Zagoria of zagsblog.com that his upcoming visits would play a big role in his decision about where he will play his college ball.

Sexton, whose family recently hosted KU coach Bill Self and staff for an in-home visit in Mableton, Georgia, is ranked No. 7 overall in the Rivals 150 in the 2017 class and plans to make an official visit to KU for Late Night in the Phog the weekend of Oct. 1.

Asked by Zagoria when he would like to sign, the five-star Sexton, 6-1, 170, said: "Around November, just so I can play my senior year out with out worrying about school."

Comments

Steve Macy 10 months, 1 week ago

Come on to Kansas, you'll love the experiance RCJH

I've been reading the travel schedule for the coaches, good to see them out there working for the future.

Brian Zachary 10 months, 1 week ago

Loved his work on Let It Be. Really brought that album together.

Pius Waldman 10 months, 1 week ago

Usually KU makes the final 5 of most recruits. Nothing like having blue-bloods on your list. That is the reason KU might not get some of the recruits. Location might also be a problem as coast living players might prefer to stay home. But hopefully the ones that sign will become great Jayhawks.

Marius Rowlanski 10 months ago

Exactly my thoughts. We are often in the final three. It would be nice to sign maybe one or two more players in the fall recruiting period even though HC Bill Self almost always finds the players he needs. Last year, getting Jackson and Udoka plus a couple of key transfers has Kansas in a great position this year.

It did hurt losing Ayton. Maybe a repeat performance of Zimmerman at Arizona might open the eyes of some of these recruits. No ill wishes, we didn't do so great with Diallo/Anderson although the NCAA didn't help us much.

Buck Bukaty 10 months, 1 week ago

While it would be absurd for the young man to make such an important life-altering and career decision based upon this, but think of one of the potentially future all-time memorable Late Night player skit marquee of Mr. Preston and Carlton Bragg engaging in a dueling pianos showdown in the most famous Field House in all of college basketball, with the resplendent Ms. Hudy being the sole Judge to declare the winner!

Stephen Dobelbower 10 months, 1 week ago

Will he go round in circles.. will he fly high like a bird up in the sky....

Titus Canby 10 months, 1 week ago

He ain't trying to be your hero, cuz that zero is to cold for me.

Will he sport the same fro as his namesake?

Stephen Dobelbower 10 months, 1 week ago

I can only hope. Get the pep band to play nothing from nothing leaves nothing every time he rejects a shot.

Brett McCabe 10 months, 1 week ago

Don't forget his stellar work with the Stones - especially on Love You Live (If You Can't Rock Me/Get Offa My Cloud medley is rock-n-roll at its best. Ron Woods also adds some wicked licks).

Pretty good resume for a job interview. "Q": Who have you worked with in the past? "A": Oh....John Lennon, Paul McCartney, Mick Jagger, Keith Richards....have you heard of 'em?

Leo Hawkins 10 months, 1 week ago

Or his terrific work on Aretha Franklin's "Amazing Grace" and "Young Gifted and Black" albums.

Robert Brock 10 months, 1 week ago

Jerrance Howard is the lead recruiter for Preston? [insert joke about Howard's inability to recruit]

Anyway, I hope that we land Sexton. That kid is Bill Self's kind of PG/combo.

Mick Allen 10 months, 1 week ago

The departed Billy Preston was also the organist on the old t.v. show Shindig, for all of you old enough to remember.

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