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Sunday, February 18, 2018

Keegan

Tom Keegan: Sherron Collins not yet ready to give up on basketball

Kansas University head coach Bill Self gets a hug from former player Sherron Collins as the two head to the Jayhawks' locker room following the win against Kansas State on Saturday, Jan. 31, 2015 at Allen Fieldhouse.

Kansas University head coach Bill Self gets a hug from former player Sherron Collins as the two head to the Jayhawks' locker room following the win against Kansas State on Saturday, Jan. 31, 2015 at Allen Fieldhouse.

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Aggressive athletes learn at a faster rate than passive ones, because how do you know if something will work unless you try it?

You don’t know, and if you don’t try things, you don’t grow.

During his freshman season at Kansas, Sherron Collins tried a lot of things at full speed, and sometimes the game he saw in front of him seemed in his mind to be going even faster than he was.

Then he caught up, and even after his knees and weight robbed a bit of his quickness, his brain took him where he wanted to go.

“I think my basketball IQ is what kind of defines me,” said Collins, whose jersey-hanging ceremony takes place at halftime of tonight’s Big Monday game against Oklahoma.

“I think the game kind of slowed up for me my sophomore year. I could kind of see things before they happened.”

Now, when Collins sees something before it happens, the vision has him coaching.

“Of course,” he said of a coaching career. “Of course. I’ve still got an itch to play.”

Collins, 30, is carrying far too much weight at the moment to scratch that itch. He said his knees and his game are fine and added that he’s not in a hurry to get into playing shape.

“I try to rush it and go somewhere, and I end up getting hurt or something, because I’m just not ready, I’m just not right,” Collins said. “This time, I’m going to take my time and make sure my T's are crossed and I’m really going to give it all I got.”

Collins moved from his native Chicago to Lawrence late this past summer. He lives with his girlfriend and his second and third children. Collins’ oldest son lives in Las Vegas with his mother.

Collins said he works out at KU’s basketball facility. During games, he sits behind KU’s bench, next to fellow KU All-American and team chaplain Wayne Simien.

“We’re talking about what people should do and how players should do this and what should happen,” Collins said. “We’re kind of in coach mode. I think Wayne would be great, too, in my opinion. You look at it a little differently, sitting behind.”

Collins hasn’t explored coaching avenues and in his current condition, isn’t ready to play basketball, so he’s in a limbo of sorts.

“Sometimes I’ll say stuff (at KU games), and people behind me will say, ‘You’d be a great coach,’ and I’m like, ‘Yeah, not yet.’ ”

But he’s willing to put his coach’s brain to use. So how would you defend Oklahoma freshman guard Trae Young?

“I think you have to be physical with him. I’d hit him every time you get a chance to,” Collins said. “No easy layups. You have to hit the floor. Hard foul. I don’t want anybody to hurt anybody. You have to attack him. I’d attack him every time.”

Teams have been playing him physically and it might be a contributing factor to him wearing down.

Oklahoma takes a five-game losing streak into Allen Fieldhouse. Young has made just 10 of 51 3-point shots during that stretch, a .196 accuracy rate. He has made 38 of 39 free throws (.974) during the losing streak.

Collins spent four years adjusting to how teams guarded him. Young is a projected lottery pick. The book is out on him and it will be interesting to see whether he can make the necessary adjustments, starting tonight in Allen Fieldhouse.

Comments

Tim Orel 9 months, 3 weeks ago

Congrats, Sherron! I hope your next career is as successful as your playing career at KU, whatever it may be.

Sae Thirtysix 9 months, 3 weeks ago

Sherron was fantastic!! Scored, defended and controlled the game. 110% Jayhawk to the core of his being. Very happy that tonight will be his ‘rafter moment’, very deserving!

Two thoughts - . he isn’t playing again, certainly not at an elite level . coaching is easy from the stands, the press table or my barcalounger Paying your dues and working your way up / pushing away the pizza is hard.

Danny Hernandez 9 months, 3 weeks ago

Man, He was awesome, could get to the basket when he wanted.

Phil Leister 9 months, 3 weeks ago

Wasn't Sherron under some sort of contract to play for the new pro team in KC that started up? Based on this article I assume he never played.

Sherron is one of the great Jayhawks of all time. It's such a shame he couldn't maintain his body to have a decent pro career. I'm sorry but it's been the same story for the last 10 years, and it's not going to change at age 30.

Roger Ortega 9 months, 3 weeks ago

You never know man. My brother was a great boxer as a kid. At 38 years old he dropped almost 60lbs and got back in the ring. Went undefeated for 4 fights, 2 draws and 1 loss. At the age of 37 (6 yrs ago) I got back into music, landed an independent record deal and my first album reached #62 on the iTunes charts in 2012. In 2016 my album 'The Lottery' hit #8 on those same charts. This year I was invited to the Grammys. My point is never give up. It all comes down to how bad you want it.

Jim Stauffer 9 months, 3 weeks ago

No doubt he could have done better at keeping the weight off, but he did have different chemistry than most. He could not work out with weights during his playing time because he gained so much weight when he did.

It is unfortunate but this guy was a tremendous talent. Probably as good as most pros, but he was cursed with a weight problem that he just could not conquer.

I will just cherish the times I have seen with my own two eyes how he destroyed opponents.

John Brazelton 9 months, 3 weeks ago

Sherron had the mis-fortunate of having a football quality body, but chose to play basketball instead. If he hasn't played in Europe by now, he needs to get a assistant coaching job in high school or community college and work his way up the ladder.

Tony Bandle 9 months, 3 weeks ago

Sherron, my friend, at 30 you may want to speed things up a bit if you truly are intent on getting back into competitive bball but thanks for all the great KU memories and for not letting that Memphis player foul you before you got that pass to Mario!!

DaNeille Dani Davis 9 months, 3 weeks ago

Sherron, thanks for the memories! You'll go down as one of the best and most memorable ones! Congratulations!

Edward Daub 9 months, 3 weeks ago

Hire Wayne Simien as "Big Man" Coach!

Hire Sherron Collins as "Combo Guard" Coach!

Oops, that would require some "reshuffling" of the current KU Assistants.

Brian Skelly 9 months, 3 weeks ago

Sherron never worked hard enough to keep his body right. He peaked at KU all while Angela Hudy rode him about his diet and workout regimen. Once that went away, so did his chance to advance professionally. Now maybe he had to work harder to get to that point, and didnt know how to on his own. He may have needed more support once he left KU than he was able to get.

I don't say that out of malice, but folks who've played with him and behind the scenes would attest to this.

[''] 9 months, 3 weeks ago

"Sherron Collins not yet ready to give up on basket....s of fries and wings...."
Sorry man. Couldn't resist. I love ya Sherron -- and wish you best in your future playing and coaching days!

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