Saturday, July 16, 2011

Perry Ellis draws heavy attention on recruiting circuit

Pray and Play's Perry Ellis (left) tries to get around Dreamvision's Winston Shepard in the Jayhawk Invitational Tournament Friday, April 29, 2011 at Haskell University.

Pray and Play's Perry Ellis (left) tries to get around Dreamvision's Winston Shepard in the Jayhawk Invitational Tournament Friday, April 29, 2011 at Haskell University.


For the second straight summer, Wichita Heights senior-to-be Perry Ellis is drawing a lot of attention on the July recruiting circuit.

Coaches from Kansas University attended each and every one of Ellis’ Pray and Play Players’ games (in a nine-day span) at the adidas Invitational in Indianapolis, Summer Jam in Milwaukee and King James Showcase in Chicago.

Assistant coach Danny Manning attended all 16 games, while head coach Bill Self was on hand for eight. Assistants Joe Dooley and Kurtis Townsend were in the gym for several games, as well.

“They told us they’d be following Perry like last year (so) we weren’t surprised,” Fonda Ellis, mother of’s No. 19-rated prospect in the Class of 2012, said Thursday.

“Having coach Self at so many was impressive,” Fonda added.

It’s pretty clear KU’s coaches, who also scouted almost all of Ellis’ games last summer, have made it a priority to sign the 6-foot-8 forward, who averaged 22.1 points, 7.9 rebounds and 1.8 assists a game for Heights a year ago.

Ellis, who is planning on making five official visits this summer and fall, has a final list of KU, Memphis, Kentucky, Duke, Kansas State, Oklahoma and Wichita State.

He has made unofficials to all of his finalists except Duke.

“It’s going to be tough (picking a school),” Ellis told “It’ll just come through my mind where I really, truly believe that I belong. Just being comfortable is the big thing for me.”

Other seniors on KU’s Class of 2012 recruiting wish list include Kaleb Tarczewski, 7-0, 220, St. Mark’s High, Southborough, Mass.; Shabazz Muhammad, 6-5, 190, Bishop Gorman, Las Vegas; Nino Jackson, 6-2, 175, Ardmore (Okla.) High; J’Mychal Reese, 6-1, 170, Bryan (Texas) High; Marcus Smart, 6-4, Marcus High, Flower Mound, Texas; Mitch McGary, 6-10, Brewster Academy, Wolfeboro, N.H.; Landen Lucas, 6-8, 240, Findlay Prep, Henderson, Nev.; Willie Cauley, 6-10, Olathe Northwest; Robert Upshaw, 6-11, 235, San Joaquin Memorial High, Fresno, Calif.; Winston Shepard, 6-8, Findlay Prep, Henderson, Nev; Christian Sanders, 6-3, 170, St. Thomas High, Houston; Brandon Ashley, 6-8, 225, Findlay Prep, Henderson, Nev.; Archie Goodwin, 6-4, 180, Sylvan Hills High, Little Rock, Ark.; Adam Woodbury, 7-0, 230, East High, Sioux City, Iowa; T.J. Warren, 6-7, 200, Brewster Academy, Wolfeboro, N.H.; Shaquille Cleare, 6-9, 285, center, Village School, Houston.

KU will have a minimum of three scholarships to give this school year, four if Thomas Robinson heads to the NBA after his junior season. The Jayhawks have already awarded a scholarship to Zach Peters, 6-9, 235 from Prestonwood Christian High in Plano, Texas. Peters is not playing on the summer AAU circuit.

After a week break, the recruiting evaluation period resumes from July 22-31.

Dougherty funeral today: The funeral for former Kansas University assistant basketball coach Cornelius Aaron “Neil” Dougherty is scheduled for 11 a.m. today at Sacred Heart Church, 1401 2nd, Ave., Leavenworth, 66048-3375. In lieu of flowers, the family encourages memorial contributions be made in Dougherty’s name to the H.O.P.E Farm in Fort Worth, Texas. Contributions can be made online at or via mail at 865 E. Ramsey Ave., Fort Worth, Texas, 76104. Dougherty, 50, died on July 5 while jogging in Indianapolis, where he worked for iHoops, a joint venture between the NBA and NCAA that promotes youth basketball.


David Howell 10 years, 11 months ago

Please let the vision in his mind of where he belongs not be outside of the Kansas state lines and/or involve a hat to be utilized during his announcement ...........

Perry you belong in Kansas and KU really really wants and needs you for 2012 !!

boomrsoonr26 10 years, 11 months ago

Please pick a Kansas school like jhawkr said. I can deal with losing to WSU or KSux (this one would be tough), but dont leave us to go somewhere crappy like OU or Memphis! If you choose Duke, you're just a frontrunner and probably like teams like the Yankees, Lakers and Cowboys.

lee3022 10 years, 11 months ago

Every person wants to be wanted. Taking his time and visiting all five of his official visits seems to me to be a no brainer. Want to get an all-expense paid tour of the country where you are the focal point of your destination at each stop? Go on your recruiting visits.

Will KU end up scoring when it counts? That depends on Perry's criteria. Also note that by 2012 the one-and-done rule in the NBA will be changed, either to eliminate it, to stretch it to two years or a combination of both (if college then two years). So Perry might be able to elect to go straight to the NBA (and don't ask if he is ready because the NBA does not seem to care).

Jeeveshawk 10 years, 11 months ago

I doubt that we will see Perry Ellis come to our school. We will have Braeden, Jarami, Jeff, and Kevin down low. There is also a slight possibility of us keeping Thomas. We also will have Merv, Travis, and Ben who can help down low during a short lineup. We also have Justin Wesley who may or may not provide us with some help down low. On top of all of this Kaleb Tarczewski seems like he loves it at KU so if he decides to come our chances of getting Ellis are practically zero. Not that I am too concerned about that as we will have mountains of skill, talent, experience, and depth down low.

KEITHMILES05 10 years, 11 months ago

You really have no clue about recruiting. Just because we already have certain players does NOT nor has it ever meant Self will not continue to recruit to those positions. Odds are one or more of the current players will be recruited over and they will move on. Self recruits THE best players and it's the responsibility of the current players to beat out the incoming ones. Also, this Peters kid isn't even playing AAU ball this summer so he is doubtful to ever set foot on campus. If you do not show an interest to upgrade your early game you have no chance at KU, ever. So yeah there will be lots of playing time available.

Matt Bowers 10 years, 11 months ago

Keith, I seem to remember an article that quoted Peters as saying that he contacted HCBS and asked for an okay to play football and was given the green light. You might not be correct in what you're saying.

Rock Chalk

Robert Brock 10 years, 11 months ago

I think that Peters is finished with basketball.

dylans 10 years, 11 months ago

Peters loves KU. AAU ball is not to hone your skills, but to showcase your talent, try to raise your ranking and overall exposure. Peters has already signed so give the kid a chance.

Chris Bailey 10 years, 11 months ago

Hmmmmm... The article talks about Manning attending all of PE's games and Self attending 8 of em. Pretty sure that's an excellent indication we want and need him at Kansas! Why start a decent player when you can start a star??? With your logic why do we recruit in football? Hell why not stop recruiting after we have 2 deep in each position? Hell why recruit at all???

Josh Galler 10 years, 11 months ago

ok next year down low with have those players,yets, but Withey and Kevin will be SR when Perry comes in as well as T Rob if he stays, so we will have Peters and Ellis as big men to replace them

Jeeveshawk 10 years, 11 months ago

Its not a question of if Self will continue to recruit him it comes down to the fact that elite freshmen crave immediate playing time. He can get that at UK because all of coachCals players (alot if them he cheats to recruit) will go pro after a year in the NCAA spotlight because the NBA pays them more than Calapari does :)

ClydeTurnbuckle 10 years, 11 months ago

I don't think that Kaleb and Perry are mutually exclusive. Kaleb is a pure center and Perry is a 4 that can step away from the basket. And yes, we do currently have a lot of big men on our roster, but I would be very pleasantly surprised if any of them turn out to be good enough to keep Kaleb and Perry from getting immediate playing time.

Lance Hobson 10 years, 11 months ago

Hope we get him, I see him as the next Wayne Simien. Needs to get tougher, though.

The one we really want is Conner Frankamp. You heard it here first, he is the best shooter in the country and will get us to the Final 4 with his threes where Tyrel Reed and Brady Morningstar couldn't.

Matt Bowers 10 years, 11 months ago

Conner Frankamp is a great player and fun to watch. I don't know if he can connect more than Brady or Tyrel, but there is a chance he could be just as effective.

Rock Chalk

bradynsdad 10 years, 11 months ago

Strikewso I don't know if you have seen frankecamp play but you are right he is an outstanding shooter. He does lack in one major area that will keep him from playing minutes for self and that is defense. He has a great stroke and if he spent this year on getting his defense where his offense is then he would be an unbelievable recruit. I'm not bashing the kid because I know he is ku bound but we all know self pushes defense or pushes you to the bench.

jayhawktalk 10 years, 11 months ago

"heard it here first..." Really? Conner, his shooting... not a new topic of conversation when it comes to KU basketball. KU has already offered, but he's also not a 2012 recruit, and unless he grows he's a little undersized (but doesn't seem to matter since he lights it up pretty regularly).

You heard it here first, KU is recruiting Perry Ellis, and I think some other schools may be, as well. He's pretty good. Spread the word.

Lance Hobson 10 years, 11 months ago

Nope, what you heard first was the he was going to get us to the Final 4 with his threes. And he will. The word is that OU put him through their normal shooting drill - as many 3s as possible in 3 minutes, where most of their best sharp shooters get about 35 shots off and make about 30. Conner got 49 off and made 45. He is limited on quickness on the defensive end but if he can get adequate in that department he'll be our guy.

ClydeTurnbuckle 10 years, 11 months ago

I don't think that Kaleb and Perry are mutually exclusive. Kaleb is a pure center and Perry is a 4 that can step away from the basket. And yes, we do currently have a lot of big men on our roster, but I would be very pleasantly surprised if any of them turn out to be good enough to keep Kaleb and Perry from getting immediate playing time.

It makes perfect sense for him to take his time and use all his visits. Bottom line; it's a huge recruiting loss for us if we can't keep the talent coming out of our own back yard.

Woody Cragg 10 years, 11 months ago

Heavy hearts in Leavenworth today. Look after them Lord.

ahpersecoachingexperience 10 years, 11 months ago

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ahpersecoachlngexperience 10 years, 11 months ago

Forget what I said. Perry Ellis will sign with hcbs but it just wont be as soon as we all want. Things learned today....Tablespoons are not the same as teaspoons.....5 not the same as 2.

Ben Simonett 10 years, 11 months ago

I've been asking for early commitments for years now, i don't know why, but the kids self recruits just don't want to sign with him early. they always drag it out and it seems the longer it drags the weaker Self's recruiting pitch becomes and we lose them.

I really wish i knew why this happens

bayareajhawk 10 years, 11 months ago

What happened to the good ole days of Julian Wright committing the first time Self visited him, before he had ever even seen the campus?

Best recruitment of all time!

Chris Bailey 10 years, 11 months ago

I actually agree with you, but I do understand a kid wanting to be recruited and wanting to take those visits. It's a once in a lifetime opportunity to see a lot of places you may never see again. I agree that KSU and WSU are just on the list cause they are in Kansas. And I completely agree that Cal should burst into flames between his hair and the fact he is the devil I'm surprised he isn't just on fire always!

ahpersecoachlngexperience 10 years, 11 months ago

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KUfanInFlorida 10 years, 11 months ago


Braden, Jamari, Jeff and Kevin is not a very promising depth chart. And don't even remind me about Merv. I think one of them or even 2 of them will transfer next year. Also, I am not too crazy on Peters with that football thing. Football is not basketball. Which tells me that the guy is not really into basketball or something like that.

Perry, Kaleb, Reese, Jackson is what we need to be the next years class. I'd like to see us land McGary as well. But since Self gave out so many scholarships this year, I am not sure if it's possible.

Ben Simonett 10 years, 11 months ago

The plain truth is, Zach peters is not expected to be an impact player in the program. His scholarship offer was a tolken one designed to strengthen our recruiting position with Julius Randle, who is the best post prospect in the class of '13 and a high school teammate of Peters.

I'm not to worried about him choosing to play football because I'm not expecting much from him anyway.

Basically, Self wants Randle so bad he's willing to spend two scholarships on him.

baldwinjhawk 10 years, 11 months ago


Beate Williams 10 years, 11 months ago

Peters is a Texan. It is very difficult to live in Texas, and be whole, without ever playing football. This is something he simply wants to do. He does not have the physical body to be an effective football player at the next level. In fact I would go so far to say if he were in the public school system he would not be playing football. Football in the public schools in Texas, especially the larger schools is like playing football on small college teams. The schools have the equipment, the coaches and the resources to be very competitive and everyone talks about football all the time, and I do mean all the time. Right now it is 7 on 7 time in Texas and do you realize how hot it is down here. And these folks are serious. You don't have four or five 280-300 pounders that can move and have technique, you have dozens upon dozens. And 200-230 pound linebackers that shatter your teeth, not to mention the speed and strength of the halfbacks and wideouts. Peters is in the parochial/private school branch of Texas; there are good basketball players in this sector and a few good football players. Whereas you might have a few teams in the private sector that could compete to a degree in basketball, no private team is going to compete in football with the lowest level good public football team. I say all of this to say that Peters' desire to get in a football season does not mean all of a sudden that will be his collegiate quest.

Chris Shaw 10 years, 11 months ago

Huh? What are you talking about? Peters doesn't have the physical body to be an effective football player? He's 6'9 240 and according to a multiple of articles outside of the one I just copied below, he has a hard time not getting bigger. I mean, bigger muscular wise.

Hey, Peters may or may not get hurt playing football in "Texas" in the private or public leagues, but I would put money on this kid that he's plenty physical and tough enough to play football at any level in Texas high school football.

Anybody who is 6'9 at 240 and seemingly has good hands for a wideout or TE position has potential, I don't care who you are.

Beate Williams 10 years, 11 months ago

Sorry about that kushaw, I was thinking he was about 215-220 and saw him being wiped out. At that weight he would be a good tight end or wideout if he has the speed but if I remember there was some criticism about him have slow feet. Again, I might be remembering something from times past.

Chris Shaw 10 years, 11 months ago

That definitely could be about his foot speed because I'm not sure about that component of his game. However, at 6'9 240 he is probably okay in the physicality department. With that said, just because he is physically imposing doesn't mean his body will allow it. It will be interesting to see. I give the kid props for putting the pads on.

notigers4me 10 years, 11 months ago

What does it matter if a kid plays football his senior year or not. He still is conditioning and I am sure that he knows that basketball is his best ticket to pro sports, Give the kid a break and let him enjoy his senior year. Most AAU teams aren't anything to get excited about anyway. Most athletes aren't good enough to play multiple sports. The fact that Zach can must mean that he is a potential stud.

Chris Shaw 10 years, 11 months ago

I don't know about that. Anybody who is 6'9 240 and has good decent quick footwork with good hands would make an excellent Tight End. Basketball players have proven well (Those that are physicall gifted and tough enough) to translate to NFL tight ends. Tony Gonzalez, Antonio Gates, Jimmy Graham, Julius Thomas, Wesley Duke, and Jordan Cameron are all recent players or draft picks that played basketball.

KGphoto 10 years, 11 months ago

He'd make a pretty imposing DE too. Julius Peppers was able to play both sports in college. I'm not saying He's JP, but I can tell you I'd be following the story pretty closely if he decided to give it a go at KU. Not only could he get his hands in a lot of passing lanes, he'd be pretty hard to run around.

How about playing tackle? The mind swims in possibilities for a guy 6'9" 240, who can't seem to keep from adding muscle.

jhox 10 years, 11 months ago

Perry's choice is likely to come down to KU and Kentucky (or the NBA if they once again allow high school grads to go straight to the league.) The real question will come down to whether he can bypass the $$$$ that Slick Cal will undoubtedly throw his way.

As for Peters playing football, Self probably loves the fact that he's a football player, and that he's gaining that toughness. Self seems to place toughness above just about anything else.

If he comes to KU and can't crack the line-up for the basketball team, maybe he'll move over to the football team. We can always use a big tight end with soft, basketball type hands.

Chris Shaw 10 years, 11 months ago

Why not Duke as well? They have Capel (who has been recruiting him forever) and the academics that Ellis would be looking for. I would say Duke is more of playa than UK.

Lance Hobson 10 years, 11 months ago

Yep, the Capel connection is why he's interested in Duke now.

Ben Simonett 10 years, 11 months ago

My dream recruiting class for '12:

PG Nino Jackson SG/SF Marcus Smart PF Perry Ellis PF Zach Peters C Kaleb Tarczewski

My best guess at our actual recruiting class for '12:

PG Nino Jackson SG J’Mychal Reese PF Perry Ellis PF Zack Peters C Willie Cauley

history tells us when Roy and Self both go hard after a recruit (Taczewski, Smart), Roy Usually wins. It sure is nice to have a 6'10 in state prospect that you can recruit as a back up.

Jeeveshawk 10 years, 11 months ago

Just to let you know recruoting classes don't have to be in starting lineup format.

Ben Simonett 10 years, 11 months ago

true, but a class you can field a team out of is usually the goal.

it just seems like a starting line up because i'm predicting five commits

KUfanInFlorida 10 years, 11 months ago


I don't think we have enough room for all of these recruits that you listed.

ahpersecoachlngexperience 10 years, 11 months ago

No one wants to hear your dreams especially at bedtime.

ku1otaku 10 years, 11 months ago

If I am not mistaken, I thought we were sitting pretty good with Tarczewski? I don't see Roy winning out on that one, but I could be wrong.

Marcia Parsons 10 years, 11 months ago

Who knows what is going to appeal to a kid when he's making his decision. He has known KU all his life, and there is always the chance that it seems like old stuff to him. Maybe he'll decide he wants to go to some other part of the country for a change. Maybe he'll decide he likes one coach or one bunch of players better than others. All a recruiter can do is present his best case, and then it's all up to an impressionable 18-year-old. I don't feel I can blame or credit a coach/school for that decision.

Benjamin Piehler 10 years, 11 months ago

It'd be awesome if he came here, but the slime-ball over at UK has his hooks into him pretty good at this point.... I think espn premium just did a story on it. Unfortunately, I'd wager that's where he will end up.

AverageCitizen 10 years, 11 months ago

Some of you have inferiority complexes. You are falling for the same tired spin about how Cal get whatever he wants. Perry is a class kid and has watched for years as KU sends players to the NBA. He knows we get a lot of national publicity where his talents will not be missed by scouts. Lawrence will allow his family to see tons of games, even in away games at Oklahoma. Kentucky does not beat KU in academic. Duke is more of a threat to KU now that Capel is on their staff and Perry is a 4.0 student.

Chris Shaw 10 years, 11 months ago

Now is the time to go after Louisville and Pitno. Pitno wants divisions and rivalries..........come to the Big 12. Yes, I know it's all depenedent on football, but Louisville has all of the resources, financials, and future potential seats and boxes within their stadium to make it work.

ku1otaku 10 years, 11 months ago

I actually thought the same thing, but then I many more years do you think Pitino will be at Louisville (that's a serious question by the way)? If he leaves/retires do you think they will still be as relevant? Would they eventually hurt the Big 12. Just wondering...

nuleafjhawk 10 years, 11 months ago

I'm somewhat surprised that I haven't heard the name Phil Forte brought up in any recruiting discussions. He's the point guard and teammate of Marcus Smart on the Flower Mound (Dallas, Tx) team. If the name sounds familiar to you, he's the son of Phil Forte that played KU football from '83 - '86, and was a pretty dang good player.

Phil Jr is a 5' 11", 180 lb guard that can absolutely shoot the 3 from anywhere. I mean, he's probably Jeff Boschee good. He can shoot lights out. I would imagine his size is a little bit of a drawback, but he's already got offers from Oklahoma, Oklahoma St, Alabama, North Texas, TCU and others.

OK, one stipulation to this post: Phil Sr has been accused, by some, of providing housing for Marcus Smart at a rate lower than what is normal for the area. I have personally known Phil and his wife for over 20 years and I refuse to believe the accusations. I absolutely don't think he would ever do anything intentionally wrong like this. Phil is a big, physically imposing guy but he has as soft a heart as anyone I've ever known. His son has been best friends with Marcus Smart for YEARS and I guarantee that if he did give him a reduced rate, it didn't have one damn thing to do with basketball, but rather one friend helping another.

Ok haters - start hatin'.

Robert Brock 10 years, 11 months ago

FWIW, I would like the Hawks to get:

Tarc Ellis Smart Sanders

REHawk 10 years, 11 months ago

I'd love to see an in-state talent such as Perry Ellis land in Lawrence for a couple of seasons. He has the potential to go right down with D. Manning as one of a handful of the greatest Kansas high school grads ever to don a Jayhawk uniform. And Danny is just the right guy to polish Perry's game.
The 2012 recruiting class could be one of the juiciest crops ever to be harvested by Bill Self and Co. I am certain that, if promising outstanding recruits should wish to commit, our coaching staff will find slots for them. If I were a current incoming player, I would intensify my focus and training to show the best of my potential in 2011-12. Slackers quite possibly will move aside after this season. Available scholarships have a way of sorting themselves out for the sake of acquiring quality recruits.

Chris Shaw 10 years, 11 months ago

Looks like A&M is going to hire JMychal Reese's father as an assistant coach. This should get interesting in the recruitment of JMychal.

AZHawk72 10 years, 11 months ago

The biggest problem I have with Ellis is his game off the court. I mean, I grew up with friends who professed their uncompromised "love" for the girl of their dreams, yet they stopped whatever whenever the hottie de jour walked by. Oh, they'd ask me to be their best man, but I wasn't counting on a trip to the altar anytime soon. If you've been to a number of our games and shown a great deal of respect for the program, why be a "playah'--then again, why not pronounce the "er," but I digress. I am probably in the camp that this recruitment is not going to happen--or it already would have. Trips throughout your senior year or focus on your academics and your high school team--if he really wants to be a 'Hawk, then he should choose the latter. However, he hasn't. Next.

PS Biggest in-state loss in B-ball recruiting to date--Lucius Allen, from Wyandotte High to UCLA.

jaybate 10 years, 11 months ago

Biggest California in-state loss in B-ball recruiting to KU to date--Paul Pierce.

I loved Lucious. Watched my brother play him play for Shublom for two years.

But dang, I like Paul Pierce. He's a fair trade.

jaybate 10 years, 11 months ago

"Some Reasons Perry Can't Quite Commit to KU"

~Not sure he wants to deal with the altitude of Mt. Oread.

~Waiting to see if Wichita power brokers want him to run for Governor of Wisconsin.

~Unwilling to play for Self, if Self's winning percentage dips down to 82%.

~Doesn't want to be just another lottery pick with DMan's coaching.

~Not sure if he can stand the stress of living in tornado alley another two years.

~Really likes to be close to the aerospace industry.

~Waiting for Ark River currents to signal KU is the place to be.

~Not sure he wants to compete for PT with Braeden and Jamari, after they have been Hudy-ized.

(Note: all fiction. No malice.)

KULA 10 years, 11 months ago

-Not sure he wants to be on the wrong end of the ESPY's biggest upset award.

jaybate 10 years, 11 months ago

~Not sure he wants a ring like the '08 team.

jaybate 10 years, 11 months ago

Aren't national championship rings great?

Aren't they a great response to statistically inevitable things like upsets?

Don't you just love national championships?

Don't you just love to stuff them back is wise guy's faces?

Eh, I know I sure do. :-)

KULA 10 years, 11 months ago

Just sayin'


Ya think the last two years doesn't have an effect on a recruit's thinking?

KULA 10 years, 11 months ago

Ah yes, the 08 team! Thanks for reminding me--seems like so long ago after the last two years. Especially to a young kid in high school. Yes, the 08 team--the team loaded with NBA talent (give you kudos for recruiting anyway, Bill) who were probably all too high to be affected by the coach's big game jitters. The team who the coach himself thanked for bringing HIM along for the ride...

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