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Originally published November 14, 2011 at 08:48p.m., updated November 14, 2011 at 11:43p.m.

Zach Peters makes it official, signs letter-of-intent with Kansas University

Plano, Texas big man, who orally committed in April of 2010, happy to be a Jayhawk

Zach Peters officially signs with KU at his house in Plano, Texas.

Zach Peters officially signs with KU at his house in Plano, Texas.

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Zach Peters, a 6-foot-9, 235-pound senior power forward from Prestonwood Christian Academy in Plano, Texas, orally committed to play basketball at Kansas University way, way back on April 21, 2010.

On Monday night, in front of family, friends, teammates and coaches, he officially became a Jayhawk, signing a letter of intent at a ceremony in the comforts of his own home.

“Back then, it didn’t feel all that real,” said Peters, who averaged 15.3 points and 9.0 rebounds a game his junior season. “I knew I was going there and thought it’d be awesome, but now it’s really starting to settle in. I am actually a Jayhawk, not a future Jayhawk. I’m really excited. I know it’s the right choice.”

A good student, Peters actually considered playing for the Jayhawks this season.

Let him explain.

“In April, they (KU coaches) called me up and knew they were losing the (Morris) twins and were lacking a big-man presence. They said, ‘We are looking at your grades. You only need to take two summer classes and could come to KU this next season,’’’ Peters related.

“I said, ‘Wow, I have a big decision to make.’ They wanted me to come play. That meant a lot to me. It showed me they have confidence in who I am as a player.”

Peters, who is Rivals.com’s No. 144-rated player nationally, ultimately decided to return to Prestonwood Christian.

“All my friends were graduating from the year before. I was already looking forward to my senior year and doing what all of them got to do,” Peters said. “I didn’t feel I was ready to go at that point.”

He decided not only to return, but to also play football, which he gave up after his freshman season. Peters, a wide receiver, has 13 touchdown catches and 968 receiving yards for the playoff-bound Lions.

“I’m 50 yards away from 1,000 yards. If Parker (Ash) our quarterback throws me the ball, hopefully I’ll pass 1,000,” he said with a laugh. “We have a good chance of going to state (title game) with the guys we’ve got. I think we’ll make it,” Peters said.

As far as risking injury in football ... “I feel great. I feel refreshed,” he said. “I’ve had a couple nicks, bruises on my legs, nothing serious. It’s nothing basketball hasn’t caused for me in the past.”

He’s thankful KU’s hoops coaches approved of him playing football.

“They joke around with me that they don’t want me to play,” Peters said. “They want whatever I do that makes me better as an athlete.”

Peters chose KU after making unofficial visits to North Carolina, Texas, Memphis, Kentucky, a lot of schools.

His first visit to KU was the Colorado game on Jan. 27, 2007.

“Julian Wright made a faux paux on a breakaway and lost the ball in midair,” Peters’ dad, Tim, recalled. “He landed on his back. Coach (Bill) Self wouldn’t let anybody go out and get him. I think we heard every word imaginable. I said right then, Zach was in eighth grade, ‘Well I guess he’s not going to Kansas.’ Boy, coach Self just let Julian Wright have it. ... Zach (ultimately) made the decision, told himself, ‘If I am going to be what I need to be in the league, I need to be coached by coach Self and coach (Danny) Manning.’ Coach Self and Manning have been as honest as the day is long. If you are afraid of hard work and afraid of coach putting a boot up your butt, you won’t go to Kansas. I think it scares some kids off. But at the end of the day, Zach made the right decision,” Tim Peters added.

Comments

Ashwin Rao 10 years, 6 months ago

Welcome to KU, Zach! I am so glad that you decided to join the Jayhawks!

llydapdicter 10 years, 6 months ago

How awesome that would've been to have him play this year......oh well.

Andrew Moore 10 years, 6 months ago

Can he play Football too? Peter s will be a great program player. I'm looking forward to how KU utilizes all of these big men. Withey, Young, Wesley, Perry Ellis, Landen Lucas and Zach Peters. No worries on the front line for the foreseeable future.

jaybate 10 years, 6 months ago

UKonvictALLday,

UK and Cal feared the precedent of signing a talented player that could read.

ohmixmaster 10 years, 6 months ago

Baaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa....hilarious!! No "Cal-I-Felony" here. Welcome to the real KU Zach. We're glad to have you.

Steve Reigle 10 years, 6 months ago

Nah, it's all that goo in the hair. It seeps through and destroys what few brain cells are still working.

Jaminrawk 10 years, 6 months ago

Except that Kentucky ... did offer him. And so did UNC and Texas ... Check out his offer list, troll : http://rivals.yahoo.com/ncaa/basketball/recruiting/player-Zach-Peters-68658

Tim Orel 10 years, 6 months ago

They're getting paid MORE than the guys in the League are at this point.

Jaminrawk 10 years, 6 months ago

UK has had a ton of NBA players the last two years and has no ring to show for it.

BC5 10 years, 6 months ago

UK has had NBA players on their roster every year and what have you got to show for it? Enjoy your one and done players while we build a team

Scott Oswalt 10 years, 6 months ago

Don't you have anything better to do? Go shave Anthony Davis' unibrow. Dude looks like a tranny drag queen.

rhollinshed 10 years, 6 months ago

There is only one Blue nation.....and UK is not it! UK Punks get on your own website and cause havoc there.

jhawkpb23 10 years, 6 months ago

I bet Turner Gill would like to use him as a receiver with those kind of numbers. Bill Self would never let that happen though.

Martin Rosenblum 10 years, 6 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

Justin LoBurgio 10 years, 6 months ago

Kinda like in '89-'90 when Roy had a 6'10" Pekka

Kent Wells 10 years, 6 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

ahpersecoachingexperience 10 years, 6 months ago

Self gets rid of his pair of twins for Peters.

Think I saw an Oprah episode on that one time.

jaybate 10 years, 6 months ago

UK point shaving scandal UK death penalty UK near death penalty UK fired two straight coaches for doing it the right way? UK hires The Forfeiteer from Memphis. Does UK = tradition of corruption?

How many rings has UK won untainted by gambling scandals?

How many games has UK won untainted by gambling scandals?

KU is just miles ahead of UK if you count only the untainted wins and untainted rings.

Ah its great to be a Jayhawk!

Eric Williams 10 years, 6 months ago

2004-05: Beat UK 65-59 @ UK 2005-06: Beat UK 73-46 @ KU 2006-07: Beat UK 88-76 in 2nd round 2007-08: Didn't play - KU wins National Championship

This lesson in history has been presented by Bill Self.

parrothead8 10 years, 6 months ago

Um, nice try, but it was KU that won that game 150-95. It's hilarious how you copied and pasted from Wikipedia and just switched the team and coach's names.

Joseph Kuebel 10 years, 6 months ago

Wow. What a clown... KANSAS 150- KENTUCKY 95. GO KU!

Jackalope7 10 years, 6 months ago

Hey Dawg...you better check yoself before you wreck yoself. Get yo facts straight before you go flapping. Although, seeing that you can make complete sentence. You're probably aware KU, in fact, won the game in 89'. Which leads me to believe you're trying to get a raise out of everyone. I'll never understand people going on to opposing team's websites and talking crap. Do you actually think the players for Kentucky give a flip about your school? All they wanna do is get paid as soon as possible. Why do you think you got players like Daniel Orton and his "overbearing" 3.3 points a game jumping to the NBA? And you think they come for the tradition...give me a break. You guys sucked before your coach got there. Now you got players that just wanna get paid for one year of service. We'll see what's up tonight. RCJH!!!!!

oggerr 10 years, 6 months ago

UKBallbaby: I was at that game and Kentucky had nothing. It was Petino's first year and all UK did was throw up 3's. No defense. UK got a royal butt kicking! Nice try trying to re-create history.

Martin Rosenblum 10 years, 6 months ago

If my previous post was removed, let's substitute "Zach" and think of these comments from announcers:

Zach goes to the hole.... Got to get a hand on Zach... Zach goes deep... Zach looks a little soft tonight...

Get it, substitute Zach for Peters and vice versa.

(I couldn't help myself. The 10 year old just came out!)

Robin Smith 10 years, 6 months ago

your limitations are showing :/

"imitation is the sincerest form of flattery"

much like how UK is trying to imitate a good program, except they don't know what that actually means

RockCaCO3 10 years, 6 months ago

"Limited", is that the PC way to refer to UK fans?

Dude, do you know what a court jester is? You be it.

TXBBall55 10 years, 6 months ago

I hope they don't give him a roommate so he has room for one next year!

Alohahawk 10 years, 6 months ago

Aloha and welcome to KU, Mr. Peters. Proud to have you as a Jayhawk. Look forward very much to having you represent the Jayhawk Nation.

Don't worry about the few doubting Thomas's you may have read on this board. Even though your ranking on the recruiting boards has dropped over the last year, most of us realize you dropped off the radar (ie. AAU circuit) to spend time improving your abilities along other lines. Best of luck with all your endeavors during your senior year in high school.

BTW, this board, unfortunately, has been infested by a few persistent trolls as of late, easily recognized by the odorous smell emanating from their posts. Once you've read one of their posts, you'll discover that they aren't worth the dodo they write. So you won't want to waste your time reading additional posts by them. They most likely were abandoned by their families, because of the way they act and talk, so I suppose we should take them in and make them feel wanted. But, sorry, I just can't stomach the smell.

TXBBall55 10 years, 6 months ago

Other than the clear UK guy, who's doubting him? There may not be a ton of "welcome" posts, but fans have been "welcoming" him for what seems like forever given his early commitment. Some may voice concern over his ranking (as has been discussed in painful detail on the LL commitment thread), but those comments tend to be more reflective of the concern surrounding the program, and not any one player.

In any case, welcome to KU Zach.

Scott MacWilliams 10 years, 6 months ago

A little UK hoops history, folks....

"The scandal publicly broke early in 1951, when the New York District Attorney’s office indicted CCNY and several other New York colleges for fixing games. Kentucky's involvement in the point-shaving mess was still to be uncovered when the #1 ranked Wildcats arrived in Minneapolis in search of their third NCAA championship in four years. There they met No.4 Kansas State, champion of the Big Seven. Led by 7-foot junior All-America Bill Spivey and sophomore Cliff Hagan, the Kentucky Cats won, 68-58, and coach Rupp had his third title.

In response to media questions during the tourney, UK coach Adolph Rupp boasted “The gamblers couldn't touch my boys with a 10-foot pole.” The victory celebration didn't last long, however. Shortly after winning the title, the scandal overtook the Cats. Obviously some gambler had found an eleven-foot pole, as five Kentucky players, over three season, were implicated.

An Assistant DA said that practically every game Kentucky played in the 1951 season involved gambling. Groza and Beard, stars of the 1948 U.S. Olympic basketball team and now professionals, were thrown out of the NBA. Spivey fought the charges, but never played another game in college, was banned from the NBA, and his dreams of a rich pro career ended.

When handing down the sentences of the Kentucky players, Judge Saul Streit unleashed a blast against the school and Rupp, calling Kentucky “the acme of commercialization and overemphasis.” He further said “I found covert subsidization of players, ruthless exploitation of athletes, cribbing at examinations, ‘illegal’ recruiting, a reckless disregard of the physical welfare, matriculation of unqualified students, demoralization of the athletes by the coach, alumni, and townspeople and the flagrant abuse of the athletic scholarship.” He said that Rupp "failed in his duty to observe the amateur rules, to build character, and to protect the morals and health of his charges." And he especially reprimanded Rupp for his association with Ed Curd, acknowledged as the biggest bookmaker in Lexington."

Soruce: http://www.hoopszone.net/Kentucky/Dark%20Side.htm

Alohahawk 10 years, 6 months ago

Mahalo GBJayhawk. Excellent research. Hard evidence against the Kenstinky trolls who lionize their own kittykat program, while attempting to vilify the Jayhawks.

As recent events would seem to illustrate so well, glorifying a coach to the point of pontification can (or should) eventually undermine any program, venerated or otherwise.

jayhawker_97 10 years, 6 months ago

right on, Mr. Peters! you wont' regret your decision. welcome to Jayhawk Nation!

rock chalk!

DRsmith 10 years, 6 months ago

Number #144. That is quite the score for Self and the staff. With the Landen kid and now this, the recruiting is just off the charts around here. I just hope we can keep these guys around for more than a year.

Mel Clare 10 years, 6 months ago

ALL teams have to have some kids like this..............the Christian Moody, Chris Piper types is what I call them. I am kinda glad everyone thinks our recruiting sucks...................makes these teams have chips on thier shoulders.

Would rather have these kids than the one and done prema dona's that only want a one way, one year, easy, treat me like a god, i dont do anything wrong kids fast ticket to the NBA..................but hey, that will probably get changedby the NBA bargainging agreement and they will HAVE to do 3 years in college or go overseas................then the recruiting that you dont like will balance out........Self does quite well................

DRsmith 10 years, 6 months ago

Agree 100%. However, whey you have a team full of them, then it is a problem. We will have Ellis and then a bunch of role players. That isn't going to cut it.

HawkKlaw 10 years, 6 months ago

Tharpe, McLemore, Ellis and Peters will all be big time players at KU. Plus we'll still have EJ next season. That will cut it.

UmbertoConforti 10 years, 6 months ago

If Peters reads some of these comments he may wonder why he came here. You ought to leave the demented from Kentucky alone. The one who posted today is a young child so you ought not retrograde to his age. Leave that to Ahpersecoachingexperience......

nuleafjhawk 10 years, 6 months ago

Did you ever watch the old TV show " Lost in Space"?

Dr Smith was the evil, whiney, sniveling, scheming, crybaby that was always putting the Robinsons in danger.........

VaJay 10 years, 6 months ago

Hey editors/Gary Bedore - you need to fix "faux paux" The correct spelling is "faux pas" (French for "false step"). "Paux" is not a word anywhere.

REHawk 10 years, 6 months ago

Welcome aboard, Zach. Jayhawks are very fortunate to sign an athlete of your size and upscale promise. It is always a joy to bring in recruits who long envision themselves in a Kansas uniform and cherish the opportunity to play at home in The Phog. Danny Manning will teach Rivals a resounding lesson regarding the ratings game these next few seasons, just as he has with Sasha, Darnell and the twins.

REHawk 10 years, 6 months ago

Makes for gleeful breakfasttime chuckles, reading the attacks of trolls who promptly get ambushed and shot down by superknowledgeable Jayhawk historians, researchers, posters. Regarding tonight's contest, if Kansas should lose, the experience will turn into a splendid learning experience for a Jayhawk team looking to find cohesive flow as it progresses toward league competition and the hopes for another conference title. If Kansas wins, the Jayhawks will romp to the locker room and tomorrow's practice court with a huge boost of confidence, and a probable jump to top 10 national ranking. If Kentucky wins, the Vegas bookies will breathe a sigh of relief, and ESPN analysts will glow with self-proclaimed brilliance at their forecast of indomitable Wildcat talent. If they lose...O My!

HawkKlaw 10 years, 6 months ago

"If you are afraid of hard work and afraid of coach putting a boot up your butt, you won’t go to Kansas. I think it scares some kids off."

I think this really speaks to why Bill Self & Co miss out on certain big name/highly ranked recruits. Simply put, Bill Self is not going to baby anyone. If you feel entitled to automatically start and get a ton of minutes in every game as a youngster, Bill Self is probably going to have a reality check for you. Take EJ last season; sure, he had more raw talent than Brady Morningstar, but Brady got the start because he lived up to Bill Self's expectations and had a ton of experience, while EJ didn't.

One other obvious reason why Self may be missing on certain recruits: The Big 12 is fairly unstable. If I were a high school kid getting ready to go play DI basketball somewhere, I would probably try to avoid the Big 12 and the Big East.

DRsmith 10 years, 6 months ago

Whatever you have to tell yourself. You can get all the PT in the world because it isn't hard to beat out the other 3 star recruits you are competing against. However, go to a place like UNC and UK and have to beat out NBA talent to get your PT.

HawkKlaw 10 years, 6 months ago

It's not what I told myself - it's what Zach Peters' dad told all of us. I think that's the common perception of KU and Bill Self; you can't get all the playing time in the world because, obviously, Bill Self doesn't just "give out" PT like it's a charity for your draft stock. You have to earn it at KU. Just look at the example with EJ. A place like Kentucky would have had EJ playing a lot more than Brady last season. That's not Bill Self's style. At KU, it's all about the team. Even look at Selby last season. When it became apparent that he wasn't going to do much as a freshman at KU, his PT diminished rapidly (to the point that many of us were wondering how his draft stock was high enough to warrant going pro).

I bet there's very little doubt in the minds of the youngsters at UK that, no matter what, they'll get all the minutes they need to build their draft stock - whether they earn it or not. That's not how it works at KU and I'm proud of that.

oggerr 10 years, 6 months ago

In 1989, Idaho & SMU gave KU a much better fight than UK did. Look it up!!

Jayhawk1116 10 years, 6 months ago

Very classy by everyone to make fun of the kid's name that just signed to play at KU. If he was going to Mizzou I could understand. Weak, dudes, really weak.

flyingfinn 10 years, 6 months ago

Love everything about this young man, great student, great body at 6'9" 235 already imagine what he look like after KU conditioning and tough, plays football. Hmmmmm, no stay with a great coach play basketball at KU.

jaybate 10 years, 6 months ago

hihawk gets ebola virus from a door knob? :-)

Ben Simonett 10 years, 6 months ago

Welcome Zack,

Now please god, convince your teammate to follow you here!

Tony Bandle 10 years, 6 months ago

Zach,

Stay wide to the right and let the 5'-10" tall, 165 pound cornerbacks tackle you. Never go inside and never do a crossing pattern.

Flag routes and seven step cut outs only!!

And, whatever you do, leave the car but take the canoli.

Steve Brown 10 years, 6 months ago

I see standing ovation for your senior speech at AFH and I see new banners hanging in the rafters.

Enjoy the ride, the years fly by. Relish every moment.

jaybate 10 years, 6 months ago

The Plano Kid is coming into Lawrence on the noon train.

The desperado's don't have long to live.

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