Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Gary Bedore’s KU hoops notebook: Bill Self speaks about signees

Kansas forward Thomas Robinson defends as Kentucky forward Terrance Jones passes during the first half on Tuesday, Nov. 15, 2011 at Madison Square Garden in New York.

Kansas forward Thomas Robinson defends as Kentucky forward Terrance Jones passes during the first half on Tuesday, Nov. 15, 2011 at Madison Square Garden in New York.


Podcast episode

Press Conferences & Post-Game Interviews

KU coach Bill Self

Kansas coach Bill Self talks to reporters following the Jayhawks' 75-65 loss to Kentucky on Nov. 15, 2011.

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— Kansas University basketball coach Bill Self before Tuesday’s game announced the signing of Zach Peters and Landen Lucas to national letters of intent.

Peters, a 6-foot-9, 240-pound senior power forward from Prestonwood Christian Academy in Plano, Texas, first committed to KU in April of 2010. He had early interest from Texas, Memphis, Kentucky, North Carolina and others.

Lucas, a 6-10, 230-pound senior from Portland (Ore.) Westview High, chose KU over Washington, Cal, Stanford and Tennessee.

“We’ve known about Landen for a long time. We’ve seen him play a lot, and he came to (Elite) camp this past summer,” Self said. “He’s big enough that he can defend the five (post) and certainly skilled enough that he can step away from the basket and shoot the ball. He was obviously highly recruited because his final choices were four other great programs. We’re fortunate he fell in love with this place when he came out here in the summer, and we were able to convince him on his official visit this past weekend.”

Lucas, who started his career at Portland’s Sunset High, moved to Findlay Prep in Henderson, Nev., last year, when he averaged 6.0 points, 6.0 rebounds and 2.0 blocks per game. He’s returned to Portland and attending Westview High this season.

“He can shoot it. He can pass it,” Self said, citing a strong “skill set. He understands the game like the big guys we’ve had here in the past, such as Sasha (Kaun) and Darnell (Jackson) that really have a great feel on how to play.”

Lucas is the son of former Oregon standout Richard Lucas (1987-91).

“I actually coached against his father when I was an assistant at Oklahoma State,” Self said. “This is a very bright young man that will certainly achieve great things on the court and in the classroom for Kansas.”

Peters, meanwhile, averaged 15.3 points and 9.0 rebounds per game last season.

“Zach’s big and rugged. He can really shoot the basketball,” Self said. “We can play him to where he’s big enough to defend the five (post) or skilled enough to play in at the four (power forward).

“Guys that can really shoot are usually great passers. I think he will be that,” Self added. “We know he’s a big guy that can stretch it, but he likes to hit you, and certainly contact and physical play will not be an issue with him early in his career.”

Also a football wide receiver, Peters has 13 touchdowns and 968 receiving yards entering the state playoffs.

“He didn’t play summer basketball the past two years so his stock has fallen from the national rankings,” Self said. “All that did was motivate this kid. Zach is a potential top-20 player. I think he’ll come in and have a great impact.”

KU has also announced the signing of Perry Ellis, a 6-8 forward from Wichita Heights. KU is now at the NCAA allotment of 13 scholarships for next year. The Jayhawks are awaiting word on Andrew White, 6-6 from Miller School in Chester, Va. KU is expected to have an extra scholarship available with Thomas Robinson likely to turn pro. Sophomore Justin Wesley, who arrived as a walk-on, is on scholarship this year.


KU senior guard Tyshawn Taylor, who hails from nearby Hoboken, N.J., spent some quality time with a batch of relatives in the lobby of the team hotel — the Affinia — on Monday night.

UK statement

In a pregame interview with the Lexington Herald-Leader, Kentucky sophomore Doron Lamb of Queens said the Wildcats hoped to make a statement Tuesday.

“We want to prove to everybody we’re the best team in the country,” he said of No. 2 UK.

Cal says

Kentucky coach John Calipari on KU: “Kansas is kind of like our team a year ago where everybody kind of thought they’re not that good and I kept telling you all, ‘I like my team and there is no one else out there that scares me. We’ve just got to get it together by the end of the year.’ I said it probably 500 times,” Calipari told “I imagine right now with (Thomas) Robinson and the big kid (Jeff Withey) and the guard play they have, (Bill Self is) saying the same thing. Now you may say they’re not deep, but I played six guys last year. I will tell you he’s got a veteran team of good players and they’re trying to make a statement too.”


kusportsdotcom 10 years, 6 months ago

I very much dislike Calipari. But those are actually some classy words about KU.

People can talk about our lack of depth, but look at Kentucky. They played 6 guys most of the night. We don't need depth if 6 or 7 guys can perform at a high level. That's a big 'if' though.

ahpersecoachingexperience 10 years, 6 months ago

Watch the end of the game. Coach cal and hcbs appear to be friendly while shaking hands. Right until hcbs passes by and puts his hand in his back pocket to make sure Cal didn't steal his wallet.

LA_hawk 10 years, 6 months ago

What happened with us recruiting Nino Jackson? I thought he was pretty much a lock for us and I've heard no mention of him lately. Anyone know anything about that? Are we still recruiting him?

Robert Brock 10 years, 6 months ago

The fact that you bring up such a poor prospect as Jackson is indicative of how low KU recruiting has sunk. Sad.

Andy Tweedy 10 years, 6 months ago

Everywhere I see this kid, he's listed as a 4-star recruit, same as T-Rob and the Morris twins. What makes you believe he's a "poor" prosepect?

droppinplates 10 years, 6 months ago

"The fact that you bring up such a poor prospect as Jackson is indicative of how low KU recruiting has sunk. Sad"

Spoken like a true idiot.

Robert Brock 10 years, 6 months ago

I have watched him play many times at Ardmore H.S. and for Athletes First. At Ardmore (where I happen to live), he is considered so out of control that his coach has never allowed him to run the point. The kid is flaky and not trustworthy on or off the court.


AaronHawk19 10 years, 6 months ago

He is a 4 star top 50 prospect. Learn about it.

yates33333 10 years, 6 months ago

Calipari might have trouble with the NCAA and all the other wonderful organizations that lead to "higher and better" things, but he is still a class person and has always been such. That he looks out for Calipari isn't unusual. It makes him an excellent basketball coach. Hopefully, those who follow the game understand that this student athlete sanctimonious baloney you read from many sport writers and the NCAA is just that. If they wanted student athletes they'd go back to the way things were run in the last century's 30s and 40s. They'd emulate the Ivy League of today. And even then they'd be student athlete just most of the times. I have my doubts about Penn and Princeton.

Steve Reigle 10 years, 6 months ago

Yeah, like when he leaves UMass and Memphis just in time to duck the vacating of their wins. Real classy guy.

doctorWho 10 years, 6 months ago

I'll agree with you that the NCAA model is broken. But Calipari is playing in today's NCAA not a future revamped version. Or in the Wild, Wild West. Or wherever the H he thinks he is at as he drags yet another program down the crapper.

Martin Rosenblum 10 years, 6 months ago

I know it's conjecture, but if there had been 4:00 minutes at the end of the game where we played like we did with 2:00 minutes left, we could have pulled off a huge upset. Our guys were trying to salvage the score and not win the game, I feel like at the 2:00 minute mark. A loss is a loss and a double digit loss of 10 points somehow doesn't feel as bad as a 17 point loss.

Cal knows the truth. He's just happy with the personal "revenge" with this victory against a KU team as we have at this point. But, he still doesn't have the BIG ring as none of his players have ever had as well from any team he's ever coached.

FSUJHAWK 10 years, 6 months ago

Were Calamari's statements before or after the game? It would be helpful to know. Regardless, Calamari is worse than a used car salesman. No class there!

BTW, I love TR, however, it seems he was so passioned about being the All American that folks have labeled him as that he didn't stick to the system and game plan. As "veteran" (as Calapari would say) as this team is we are still pretty young and inexperienced. However, i see brighter days ahead. Self will make us respectable and competititive come the start of the Big 12 season; i see the treadmill returning to practice.


Steve Brown 10 years, 6 months ago

Didn't like TT not feeding Jeff W. on the break when it was 2 on 1.5. Maybe missing something.

REHawk 10 years, 6 months ago

With Traylor, Peters and Lucas, Bill Self is certainly muscling up his big man corps for the future. Now to bring in a talented guard with speed and length who will be a good fit for the 2012-13 squad. Speaking of speed and length, Calipari's team is off the charts....

Ted Hume 10 years, 6 months ago

Davis is a freak, people, no way around it. Have people really noticed his frame? freakish broad shoulders/back and twenty-foot wingspan with the agility of a guard. Scary.

AaronHawk19 10 years, 6 months ago

With Muhammad saying we are back in the running and him committing to an official visit, that could change how people view our recruiting and future situation real quick. Muhammad and Ellis could be a deadly combo next season and let's not forget McClemore.

ccarp 10 years, 6 months ago

Last night is what we needed, serious competition. Towson was fun, but this sets the bar early in the season. Most encouraging thing is that had we played more composed in UKs first run, their run would not have happened. The hawks looked tight, sloppy, and overwhelmed at times but still see great potential. I love the competition we have scheduled in the coming weeks, I believe it will make us stronger for conference.

Funhawk 10 years, 6 months ago

Fun Jayhawk memory. Today’s game in 1990. Source: Lawrence Journal World, November 17, 1990. Author: Gary Bedore. Headline: Jayhawks flick Flint. 110-101. Sub-headline: Randall scores 20 despite wearing goggles to protect eye. Article partially copied reads as follows: The goggles must go. "If it was up to me, they'd come off tomorrow," bespectacled Kansas basketball forward Mark Randall grumbled after the Jayhawks' 110-101 win over an AAU team from Flint, Mich., on Friday night at Allen Fieldhouse. "I'd rather not wear them but the doctor says I should." Randall, who suffered an eye contusion at practice Monday, had no problem focusing on the rim Friday. Goggles notwithstanding, the 6-9 senior hit eight of 13 shots — plus four of four free throws — good for a team-leading 20 points. "The goggles are for my benefit, my own good," said Randall. "I don't want to get hit again. I don't have total vision in my left eye as it is. I've had blurred vision since I got hit." He was hammered by freshman Patrick Richey underneath the boards at practice. No hard feelings. "If you play basketball, you'll get bumps and bruises. You've gotta roll with it," said Randall, who led six Jayhawks in doublefigure scoring. Alonzo Jamison scored 18 points and had 10 rebounds, while Adonis Jordan contributed 16 points and seven assists. Terry Brown totaled 15 points, Mike Maddox 14 and Sean Tunstall 12. KU hit 38 of 82 shots for 46.3 percent, while Flint threw up 92 shots, making 41 (44.6). "One-hundred ten to one oh one. . .That's enough to keep a scorekeeper busy," said KU coach Roy Williams. "It was like a Denver Nuggets game," said Jamison. "It was a crazy game."
"They were taking some wild shots — long, long shots," said Jordan, noting rebounds often caromed back to guards like Terry Duerod, who hit nine of 20 three-pointers. "In the second half we knew any time he got the ball, he'd shoot." "That reminded me of the Kentucky game," Jordan added, referring to last year's 150-95 win over the Wildcats. "That was an Oklahoma-type team," said guard Tunstall. "They took shots so quick you'd find you weren't in a position to box out. I like playing teams like that. They make one quick pass, then shoot." Williams was impressed. The Jayhawks open for real next Friday night at Arizona State.

Dennis Mahorney 10 years, 6 months ago 6 '10...still 6 points 6 rebounds 2 blocks in high school....Why dont we recruit one of the top four players on his team in scoring instead of him. Somewhere Greg Drieling is smiling.

haps 10 years, 6 months ago

Yeah, that's what worries me. I haven't seen him play and I'll trust Self but if you're 6'10" in high school you should be dominating way more than making 3 shots a game and only getting a half dozen rebounds. Danny's magic will definitely be needed.

koolluke 10 years, 6 months ago

don't let those numbers fool you,it was his first year at findlay prep.a team of allstars. he will show you why those numbers are off.

Kevin Huffman 10 years, 6 months ago

I agree with koolluke below. It's misleading because Findlay Prep. attracts players from all over the Western Half of the country much like that academy that T-Rob & Tharpe went to in NH or Traylor went to in Fla., etc.

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