Sunday, July 22, 2012

Milton Doyle comes highly regarded

Milton Doyle, the latest addition to Kansas University men's basketball team, speaks to the media on Tuesday, June 19, 2012, for the first time since joining the team. KU coach Bill Self officially announced the 6-foot-4, 175-pound Chicagoan's signing of a grant-in-aid agreement Monday.

Milton Doyle, the latest addition to Kansas University men's basketball team, speaks to the media on Tuesday, June 19, 2012, for the first time since joining the team. KU coach Bill Self officially announced the 6-foot-4, 175-pound Chicagoan's signing of a grant-in-aid agreement Monday.


NBA Hall of Famer Isiah Thomas recommended his former Florida International commit, Milton Doyle, to Kansas University after Thomas was fired as FIU coach in April.

Doyle, a 6-foot-4, 185-pound combo guard, hails from Chicago’s Marshall High. Thomas attended St. Joseph High in Westchester, Ill.

“I knew coach (Bill) Self when he was at Illinois. I always helped with a couple players there. I’ve also had a good relationship with members of his coaching staff,” Thomas said in an interview with ESPN Chicago.

“I felt with Milton’s style ... and they’ve had experience with Chicago kids before, and they’ve done well by them. I thought it would be a good fit for him. I did for Milton what I always try to do for players from Chicago.

“I’ve helped everyone from Chicago. I’ve done that since I got to the NBA,” Thomas added. “He also happened to be from my neighborhood and went to the high school my brother went to.”

Doyle averaged 19 points, 7.0 rebounds and 5.0 assists a game his senior year at Marshall.

“Very rarely do you see a player in high school that has so many skills in terms of stuffing the stat sheet,” Thomas told ESPN Chicago. “He rebounds the ball well. He can score in a multitude of ways. He can score from the perimeter. He can score off the bounce. He can at the foul line, and he can score off rebounds. He’s a guy who will always find a way to leave his mark on the game.

“For us at FIU, he would have been our first true impact player. He would have been to FIU what Johnny Dawkins was to Coach K (Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski). He would have put us on the map.”

Barber update: ESPN’s Dave Telep reports that SMU is trying to get involved with Anthony “Cat” Barber, a 6-2 senior point guard from Hampton High in Hampton, Va. Hampton is hometown of SMU coach Larry Brown’s former star pupil, Allen Iverson.

It’s long been believed Barber, the No. 9-rated player in the Class of 2013, would choose either KU or Alabama.

“SMU’s a long shot,” Telep wrote, “but the conversations Brown once had with Iverson are likely to be the foundation for his recruitment of Barber. It’s recruiting, and that means it’s about relationships, so Brown should use all the tools at his disposal. Barber needs to get ready to learn about A.I. from the guy who coached the guard to the NBA Finals.”

Allerik Freeman, a 6-4 shooting guard from Findlay Prep High in Henderson, Nev., is a summer Boo Williams AAU teammate of Barber’s.

Freeman, the country’s No. 39-rated player, tells he has a list of KU, UCLA, Villanova, Duke and Ohio State.

“I plan on taking visits to all five as long as a position hasn’t been filled yet,” Freeman said.

As far as going to the same school as Barber .... “Oh, man, I would love to play with Cat,” Freeman told Zagsblog. “Me and Cat play well together when we’re both getting in the lane and we’re both driving and dishing and we play well. If me and Cat wanted to go to Kansas together, then that would be great but I’m just trying to make decisions for myself.”

There’s also been talk Barber may want to go to the same school as Boo Williams teammate Troy Williams, a 6-6 small forward from Oak Hill Academy in Mouth of Wilson, Va. Williams, who is ranked No. 41, said on Twitter Saturday that KU and Indiana are the latest to show interest. Louisville and Alabama reportedly have been trying to land Williams and Barber as a package deal.

One vs. two: The No. 1 player in the Class of 2014 (Andrew Wiggins) went up against the No. 2 player in the Class of 2013 (Julius Randle) on Friday at the Peach Jam in South Carolina.

Wiggins, 6-7 from Toronto, scored 28 points and had 15 rebounds in his CIA Bounce squad’s 81-80 overtime victory over Randle’s Texas Titans team. Randle, 6-9 from Plano, Texas, had 15 points and 13 boards. KU coach Bill Self, Kentucky’s John Calipari, Baylor’s Scott Drew and many other coaches were in attendance.

“Wiggins made Randle look ordinary, as if he was just another Top 100 player,” CBS Sports’ Jeff Goodman said in an article on “I will confess that I’m a huge Randle fan, but he was outclassed — in every manner.”

KU is on Randle’s long list of schools. Wiggins is considering KU, Duke, Florida State, Kentucky, North Carolina, Ohio State, Syracuse and others.

“I really don’t pay attention to (rankings),” Randle told The Augusta Chronicle. “If I’m No. 1, I’m No. 1. It doesn’t matter to me. I just want to be ready for the next level.”

There’s talk Wiggins may reclassify to the class of 2013.

For sale: A 1915 KU basketball jersey is being auctioned off online. The suggested value is $30,000, with a current high bid of $7,500. It is available at ... The 1998 Big 12 title ring of former KU player Kenny Gregory is on sale for $7,500 on The web address is


BigTamale 9 years, 11 months ago

They misspelled Gold in that listing...

Jeff Schartz 9 years, 11 months ago

ESPN reporting Sunday evening that Chris Walker has chosen the University of Florida Gators as his next home.

jayhawkinATL 9 years, 11 months ago

Agreed! The recent NCAA allegations are only the tip of the iceberg. More to come. As I've always said, you don't get high-profile/talented kids to play b-ball in Waco unless something shady is going on. Drew is good for one thing...coaching down talent...PJ should have left after his freshman year...was a guaranteed top 3 pick.

Lance Hobson 9 years, 11 months ago

  1. First of all, you get a ring for winning the Big 12 title?

  2. I hope AI makes sure he tells Cat about Larry Brown's obsession with inconsequential things such as "practice."

  3. I wouldn't put too much credence into anything Isiah Thomas has to say when it comes to judging talent after what he did with the Knicks. I do trust Bill Self, though. I am looking forward to following Doyle's development the next few years.

ku1otaku 9 years, 11 months ago

Am I crazy to think that Doyle looks like a young DWade in that photo?

JayDocMD 9 years, 11 months ago

Chris Walker announced for Florida this morning. A while back he was a KU lean.

REHawk 9 years, 11 months ago

I come away from Thomas' comments with a modicum of respect for Milt Doyle. Those were very strong comments, declaring that Milt would have put FIU on the map. Even if Ben should become a lottery pick in June, we appear to be left in good guard shape, what with Tharpe, Frankamp, Adams and Doyle. White could alternate between the 2 and 3, Ellis the 3 and 4. Looks to me as though the post position represents the Jayhawks' direst need for 2013-14.

Jack Wilson 9 years, 11 months ago

Agree completely that a top post guy is the key in 2013-14. We need a big get there. I see Traylor/Lucas/Peters as a trio that may give us two rotation players off the bench at some point, and a starter only after development and if we don't get better guys in recruiting. I doubt all three will stick for four years.

And as always, we have to worry about top guys thinking there is a logjam, or that they might not be a starter.

However, with the "depth" we have, and Withey leaving, a top guy can realistically assume he would start.

Michael Bratisax 9 years, 11 months ago

As usual, you are 100% right on target. Maybe we could get Florida to lend us one of the four highly regarded big men that they have who will all be eligible in 2013.

jaybate 9 years, 11 months ago

Randle gets humbled

May save his career

Milton gets hyped

But Isiah is biased

Cat gets Larry-ed

But A.I. can't ice it.

Wiggins reclasses

Randle is Bill's

Ben Simonett 9 years, 11 months ago

Well, i havent been flamed in a while so i guess now is as good a time as any.....

Chris Walker, a long time considered KU lean committed to Florida.

Bill Self misses again on his top front court target.

At what point does it stop being coincidence and start being a trend?

Ben Simonett 9 years, 11 months ago

and btw

yes, Walker was a prospect Self wanted badly,

yes, Walker would have "fit Self's system". perfectly actually

no. whoever Self now goes after as "plan B" is not a better prospect than Walker.

Jack Wilson 9 years, 11 months ago

Awesome .. you possibly fended off more than a few replies there.

Vernon Riggs 9 years, 11 months ago

Randle is a better prospect. Parker is a better prospect. I think Lawrence is a better prospect for staying more than OAD. Shepherd, Mickey, Anaya.

The differences between the 2013 Bigs are small. There are 8-10 PF's that have the same potential.

dylans 9 years, 11 months ago

Is the trend that 98% of the top 150 players go to other schools? Or that Bill recruits more payers than he can possibly sign because you can't win them all?

jaybate 9 years, 11 months ago


I feel your pain, but...

Here are the rational drivers IMHO:

1) Self has apparently quit playing the waiting game on 5 stars, and has a flood tide of perimeter players for next year already (Naadir, Rio, Doyle, maybe BenMac, Greene, and Frankamp, so far), so Walker may have concluded Donovan has more need;

2) Donovan apparently did Self a courageous favor by hiring Self's pal Norm Roberts, when Self couldn't, after Norm got the black glove treatment by the wrong way guys while Norm was at St. Johns; so, maybe Self thought signing a bunch of players and backing off on Walker who could not make up his mind, was a kind of professional curtesy and payback to a "trying to do it the right way" Donovan that had done him and his friend a big favor; and

3) perhaps Walker caught a whiff of the looming Wichita pot case related allegations of KU player involvement and decided given the tight lid on information being kept by KU officials right now, Florida was the less risky move right now.

Remember, Self appeared to lose Kyle Singler and James Anderson almost immediately after it surfaced that KU was under investigation for Darnell Jackson being paid by a KU alumni, before DBlock got to KU.

Remember also that the past several years of Scalpinggate, Lewgate, and Realignmentgate have hampered Self's effectiveness in recruiting and that it has only been in the last 6 months that Self's recruiting has started to recover from those stigmas.

I tried to tell folks there were probably going to be costs related to recruiting stemming from this Wichita pot case. Walker could be one of them.

Dan Cook 9 years, 11 months ago

Wow, you're reaching big time. I was in the gym last year when Chris Walker told Danny Manning that KU and Florida were his favorites. Might it be as simple as the kid in Florida wanted to play at Florida?

jaybate 9 years, 11 months ago


First, I don't care if you were not just on the floor, but in Chris Walker's bedroom with him; physical proximity isn't trump here. Capice?

Second, what I am doing is being data inclusive and mastering the obvious with three likely contributing factors.

Third, what you are doing is being data exclusive by ignoring probable factors.

Other things equal, explanations that explain more of the facts than not are preferable.

When you do something as analytically unsound as ignoring data points, the burden falls on you to explain why the three things I mentioned would not be part of the calculus of the event. You don't do that. So you are not persuasive.

Next, juju, do you ever not undermine your own logic? :-)

Let's break it down.

Assuming what you say is true about Walker telling Manning that KU and Florida in that order were his leans, or even if you meant to imply they were equals, then (and assuming you were either on the floor, or in his bedroom):

a) staying home was not decisively important up to that point, and for quite a while after, or Walker would have listed only Florida, Miami, and Florida State; and

b) since you say Walker listed KU and Florida, then something very likely could have tipped the balance between going away and staying, if other factors were at play to tip the balance.

The factors I cite were factors that I argue were plausibly at play.

What exactly made him decide finally that he would rather stay at home?

If the three factors that I noted were not existent, then I would be comfortable thinking Chris Walker woke up one morning and had this "feeling" that he wanted to stay home near family and in his home state, the same way Perry Ellis and Conner Frankamp appeared to do.

But these three factors I cite are not fictions I dreamed up. There really is a pot case in Wichita and KU players really were alleged to have some peripheral involvement. Donovan really did hire Norm Roberts after he got the boot at St. Johns, when Self lacked an opening. And Self really does have a ton of players on the perimeter for next season and he has appeared to decide to stop waiting so long for 5 stars, and instead signing lesser players that want to sign sooner.

So I am inclined to think these factors may have been part of the stew that produced this event.

If you disagree, tell me why these factors were not probably drivers in the process.

Its not enough to use one data point and exclude others. You have to explain why you exclude the others point by point, or you are not persuasive.

Ya follow?

jaybate 9 years, 11 months ago

Another thing about Walker, he's staring down the barrel of plenty inside and outside next season at KU, not just one or the other.

And let's add a fourth factor that Alohahawk noted below. Walker wants to be an OAD. It is an expressed desire of his. Self has some history of OAD wannabes not becoming OADs, plus he has a system that many players have said requires a lot of learning to get the hang of.

Soooooooo, let's add that when Walker was making his list of pros and cons on KU, maybe he felt he had a better chance at being an OAD at Florida, than at KU.

How about including the Danny Manning angle too?

Hey, juju, as we kick this back and forth and start to include still more data points, the reality of the decision dynamics in this situation begins to emerge.


Alohahawk 9 years, 11 months ago

No question Walker was a Self priority and KU could have really used him. The only real negative for Walker, IMHO, was that he mentioned a few times he planned/wanted to be a OAD. As for his timing on choosing Florida, it might be that he was soured on Kenstinky by Randle's recent remarks that UK could have the best recruiting class, ever, if the Harrison twins and some other top recruits (he didn't mention Walker) joined him at UK. Meaning, he didn't see Cal Lie Pari offering if UK got Randle. And even if both went to UK, Randle would have started anyway. Whatever, Walker was always a Kenstinky lean, but they obviously never offered.

Why he chose Florida over KU is the only question. Logjam? Doubtful. Walker seems to have enough confidence in himself if he is thinking himself as a OAD. So he must have felt he could beat out KU's current big men. Maybe Manning's departure hurt? Perhaps he wanted to stay close to his friends and family in Florida. The weather? The coeds? Who but Walker can answer why Florida won out?

But Coach Self still has a few options at his disposal (Randle - very doubtful; Lawrence - who seems to prefer shooting 3's over working the post; Anja; Parker - more of a SF and again doubtful; Shepherd; and Nichols - who has been compared to Collison).

jaybate 9 years, 11 months ago

Your citing Walker's desire to be an OAD does suggest yet another factor that might have tipped the balance in favor of Florida.

master16 9 years, 11 months ago

possibly it is starting to become a trend. if Kansas strikes out with Randle and Barber, who are both considered to be slightly favoring KU, then i will become more concerned. but if we land one of those guys, or even someone else like Parker, I think we're good.

master16 9 years, 11 months ago

then why are many UNC fans (as of this month) saying they think Randle goes to KU? i don't think they would just say that for no reason, especially with UK in the mix.

Michael Bratisax 9 years, 11 months ago

There is some truth to what you are saying especially when including Damontre Harris (another player targeted by Bill Self) who ended up signing with Florida.

But looking at Ellis, White, Connor and Greene who have all signed at KU and add in Ben it makes the criticism harder to prove.

But undoubtably, with some of the top-ranked big men, it seems we are often the bridesmaid and not the bride.

Norm Jennings 9 years, 11 months ago


no one has to flame U.

Your comments in light of Coach Self's record speaks for themselves.

So an anonymous poster like me might hurl insults at you, but the combination of mother nature and modern technology have exposed you in a way I never could.

master16 9 years, 11 months ago

recently, yeah. but in december or january he had a quote saying if he had to choose a school then and there, it would be Kansas. his words. so somewhere along the line something happened that made him change his mind.

dylans 9 years, 11 months ago

2 still available more if anyone leaves early. It seems premature to say anyone will leave early though. And if thy are that talented it would be a loss of talent for a gain of potential. I am assuming that all the incoming freshmen live up to their billing and don't get forced out.

Bville Hawk 9 years, 11 months ago

Did anyone else feel that, thru his comments, Isiah Thomas managed to make a good portion of the story about him and not about Milton Doyle?

IMHO, Milton is lucky he didn't end up playing for Isiah. Everything Isiah touches to crap in my observations. Has anything he has been involved with since his playing days ended been successful?

Michael Pannacciulli 9 years, 11 months ago

For all Isiah's wonders on the court he's a dope in the real you think people that actually really help others, let's say Tony Dungy as an example, in the realms of sport and real life, go around braggin quite the way isiah does? kinda sad really. nevertheless, i will give him the fact that he has been able to spot talent. i am excited to see this kid milton tear it up.

Jack Wilson 9 years, 11 months ago

Does anyone here see post scoring as our most concerning element this coming season? I do. Who scores down low? Looking back on 2008-09, we got 32 point per game from the post; 2009-10 appx. 33 ppg; 2010-11 45 ppg; 2011-12 again, appx. 32 ppg. Heck, in the title year it was about 34.

32-33 ppg per game is the magic number. Where does that come from? Withey is not a go to scorer; Ellis is described universally as passive (and anyone who has seen him play would agree); Traylor is not thought of as a scorer ("raw" "athletic" "motor" are his traits); and are Peters/Lucas really ready to be that guy, or be expected to offer post scoring as a freshman? Young isn't a post scorer. And Wesley is just not a scorer of any kind. Where does the scoring, or scoring threat come from?

We've been lucky -- Arthur, Jackson, Kaun, Aldrich, Marcus Morris, Markieff Morris, TRob -- none of that this season, though. It's 2009 without Cole Adrich (Withey is not as skilled offensively), and without players as well thought of as the Morrises. Appx. top 50 guys. Except for one -- Ellis.

Some seem to expect Traylor/Peters/Lucas/Ellis to be that guy .. but remember the Morrises as freshmen? Eventual lottery picks. What if we get that level of play from one of these guys? 7.4 ppg for Marcus and 4.6 for Markieff. Is that really good enough this season, minus an Aldrich-type offensive threat -- 15 ppg? And can we expect that from a tandem of freshmen post players?

This season may lead to a different sort of offensive approach. But we still need appx. 32 ppg from the post.

Look at what we have. EJ, McLemore, Releford, White. Perimeter guys that can score. Add in Tharpe, and the best option between Adams and Doyle, and I would suggest that our 6 potential perimeter players are much better as a group than our 7 potential post players. The likely rotation is 5 perimeter players, 4 post players.

With that, who becomes the key player? Isn't it obvious? What player has to be better than we think? What player has to be a real player, exceeding freshman expectations? I think it's Ellis. If you look at our post players, it's a group that no one can suggest with any certainty that anyone of them performs to a high level on the offensive end. Ellis is the man. He is probably the only one that can. Ellis is the key to this team. Our perimeter looks solid. Ellis has to be a player.

Here's how we could get our 32 ppg: Withey 12, Ellis 11, Young 5, and the one getting the PT out of Traylor/Lucas/Peters, 4. That would mean that Ellis plays 4 ppg better than Marcus did his freshman year. The key guy. We need that scoring. And the winner of the Traylor/Lucas/Peters battle getting 4, just under what Kieff did.

This may not seem like a tall order, but it is. To borrow from Mike Gundy .. this is Division I basketball.

If we don't get that 32 ppg from the post, this team will have to be perimeter scoring team in a way that we haven't in the recent past.

Jack Wilson 9 years, 11 months ago

I'm really don't think I'm being pessimistic. You shouldn't read pessimism into my post. We'll see on Ellis. I am actually very optimistic on Ellis. I think my main point is ... do you think he'll be that much better than Marcus Morris his freshman season? I think he can be. And I think he's the key player. But pointing out a lottery pick's freshman season under Self in comparison to a similarly ranked player might be a fair comparison when pinning down expectations.

However, I shouldn't have put "universally" when suggesting Ellis might be passive. I recall seeing a scouting report that said he does turn on "domination" mode or something to that effect. But being here in Kansas and near the high school/AAU hoops scene, there is that topic of being passive. And I've seen him in passive mode. There was an interview with Ellis in summer 2011 where he (Ellis) cited an improvement area as being more aggressive as he had been too "passive", and Withey in a recent article on Ellis said he needed to get more aggressive in the pick up games.

You cited Withey and his statements on Lucas. Remember, Withey was trumpeting Wesley as a possible starter, too. You can read into that whatever you want (and whether it impacts the credibility of what he said on Ellis, too). But let's assume Lucas is that 4th post rotation player guy. What are you suggesting will be his contribution?

You admit that you don't know what Withey's statements on Lucas "portends for the season right now." I don't either. But my post focuses on what our expectations should be for post scoring. And with the four freshmen (including Traylor), it is much more likely that the more optimistic predictions will not be fulfilled, don't you agree -- considering that there is only one top 100 player in the group? And overall, for the 32 ppg, that KY isn't a post scorer? And that Withey isn't a go-to post scorer?

And I agree .. I don't think this is going to be a Morrises, TRob, or Aldrich, post up team. That was kind of my point. Regardless, our perimeter players appear more talented, and I think this will be a more perimeter oriented team than usual.

I'm interested to know why my post appears pessimistic to you.

Jack Wilson 9 years, 11 months ago

I hear you there .. I guess I don't put great odds on Ellis being 50% better than Marcus from a points standpoint. I really think for our post scoring to be adequate, Ellis needs to be a double-digits. That's a pretty tall order. But one thing is for sure, we have the best coach to figure it out.

Ben Berglund 9 years, 11 months ago

I didn't fact check your work at all there, so we'll assume it's true for the sake of argument. Very interesting observation. I do have a couple of thoughts though. First is that this is a new era of Bill Self ball now that Danny is gone. Look at HCBS' Illinois teams and you'll see more guard-based teams (see Deron Williams, Dee Brown). Also I'm not totally unconvinced that Withey can score 15 ppg. There has been a lot of talk from him and from HCBS that he needs to score more this year, so I think we can expect at minimum 10 ppg from Withey. If you'll recall, Aldrich was actually still very much a question mark during the Morri/Tyshawn's freshman year. Anyway, I'm not that worried about it. There are a lot of possible combos for the bigs this season and Bill will find one that works. Either way, I think we'll see scoring in bunches from the wings as well.

REHawk 9 years, 11 months ago

I view this current Jayhawk crop as a very different scoring team from Self's previous squads. That 32 ppg from the 4 and 5 position need not be written in stone...if Self and staff can squeeze more scoring from the perimeter. I'm right there with you, Ellis being the key guy in terms of maintaining a 30+ scoring av. from the two bigs. I'm the eternal optimist who reckons that Ellis, Young, Traylor, Lucas and Peters can combine with Jeff to keep us near 30 pts. Can BenMac produce better scoring numbers than TT did last season, and will Travis and EJ step up their scoring averages? We should get higher scoring production from perimeter relief guys, that is for certain. White, Doyle and Adams show lots of shooting potential, and Tharpe should be more settled. My biggest concern with the bigs relates to Withey's being able to absorb the pounding and stay on the court. He should get to the line much more often this season; so your 12 pt. projection for him rings true. He might even up that a hair if he stays healthy.

jaybate 9 years, 11 months ago


I think you are right that scoring in the paint will be a question mark for awhile, just as it was the beginning of last season. But, I suspect Jeff, Kevin Young, and Perry Ellis will all be averaging in the low 10-12 ppg range the last two months of the season, which would put the paint at 30-36 ppg, or within the happy zone you describe.

How these points are apt to be scored, however, is apt to be different.

A significantly greater percentage of these points are likely to be scored on stick backs, because I think more of the hi-lo offense may be initiated through wing point hi-lo with bigs clearing, then crashing, as Self tried to do early with the committee of Josh Selby/Brady Morningstar (note: the show case wing point could be either or both BenMac and Travis.

But here is where I am venturing out on thin ice and saying that Self is likely to install some fresh high post sets that we have not seen before, because Jeff struggles sustaining position on the blocks against muscle ballers, and because there are no heavy weight studs of the caliber and strength of TRob to hold down the other low block against the muscle ballers.

They line up in a 2 guards out front at high wings, Jeff at high post at top of key, and a shooting forward and a power forward on low wings--a 2-1-2 offensive set, if you will. This set is terrific with combo guards at the two positions out front. And it is also great when you have serious offensive threats at the two low wings.

More specifically, I expect some high post sets with Jeff out at 15-20 feet and low wings (BenMac, Travis, Kevin and Perry in various combinations) doing a lot of creating on isolations. This set up won a ring for Wooden's Wicks/Rowe/Patterson team and I believe Self cribs from Wooden every now and then. Certainly his great Tulsa team was a close simulation of Wooden's schemes on Wooden's first two short ring teams.

The high post makes a lot of sense for this team, because it takes Withey out of having always to bang and be doubled on the low blocks, when the opponents are bigger and stronger. Pulling Withey to 15 where he can probably make 45-50% of his shots and pick up FTs also, and putting BenMac/Travis, or Kevin/Perry, or some combination of both, on low wings, keeps the ball in one on one isolations for our many strong wing offenders, and lets Jeff use his mobility to crash to the rebounds, instead of having to fight to block out down low on offensive rebounds. Jeff is very mobile and so you want to scheme toward his mobility, whenever he lacks enough muscle to sustain low post positioning, which will be frequently.

jaybate 9 years, 11 months ago

Active offenders and shooters of the caliber of BenMac, Travis, Kevin, White and Perry can do exactly what 6-8 Wicks and 6-6 Rowe did for Wooden long ago. They can pop it, if the defense sags off, or they can take it to the rim without getting doubled on the way, if the defense tries to guard them. It is one of the greatest offensive schemes ever devised, but it is rare to have the right personnel for it. Your high post has to be tall, mobile and a dead eye from 15-20. Your low wings have to be able to make the J, and stick back from the back side.

Next you have to have two strong shooting guards (say EJ and BenMac, when you go long at the low wings with, say, Kevin and Perry, or Kevin and Tracvis) out front 7-10 feet off both sides of centerline. These two have to be able to can it outside and be very quick on dribble penetration, when opponents begin to overplay the low wings. The low wing closest to the ball pulls out as the guard dribble penetrates, and the backside wing positions for a dish off the drive.

Self Ball and the various offensive sets of Wooden Ball both are actually highly compatible. They booth go back to the same Iba roots.

Of course we face the specter of some players getting suspended, maybe for the season, for alleged peripheral involvement with those indicted in the Wichita pot case, and so that could seriously limit what Self will in fact have the manpower to do.

But grand strategy should be to put Jeff on the blocks in Self's traditional Hi-lo, when Jeff has the strength to sustain position there, and be a threat to make a play there, but to move Jeff out to a high post in a high post set when he lacks the strength.

Of course, if Jeff has turned into David Banner and hulks out this off season, I suppose Self can just stick him on the low block, feed him all game and watch him dunk and shoot fouls the entire game. But that seems improbable to happen.

P.S.: I do think Jeff is going to surprise board rats with how much scoring he does. I think there are going to be games where he goes off for 20-30. He's a footer. He's 's mobile. He can jump. And he's got a good touch. Against certain post men, he is going to be very hard to stop on the low block.

P.P.S.: If the high low post set continues as bread and butter, and the high post never materializes, then I think Justin Wesley and Jamari Traylor may become very important 4s, because they may complement an offense that plays through BenMac first, Jeff first, and EJ third on offense, which is where i suspect the hi-lo is headed this season.

But there will be times when Self wants to get back to score in the paint, at those times, Kevin and Perry will be playing the 4.

But to play hi-lo with this team all the time just seems so wasteful of the talent and such a misuse of a slender Jeff Withey. Get him out on top on a high post set at least a quarter of the time, coach. You won't regret it.

Vernon Riggs 9 years, 11 months ago

I agree with your assessment of the High-Low. But instead of pulling Wooden's 1960's play book, I would suggest something a little newer and highlights our 3-point shooting. Perhaps the best offense is the Dribble Drive Offense that Cal made famous at Memphis. The 2-2-1 set-up would play up to the skill set of the team when Jeff in the game. When Jeff is out, we could slide over to the 5 Out or even the Two-Guard Front. There is even a setup (1-2-2) when you have a smaller faster point guard that can penetrate (when Naadir is in). It is the same offense just with different looks to match up with your on-court personel.

whitechocolate 9 years, 11 months ago

Wichita Eagle and KC Star are both McClatchy papers. Up to a few years ago, Eagle writers and photogs would drive up to KC frequently for Hawks/Chiefs games. Now to save money, they share stories, though mostly it's the Star's KU beat writer producing the lions' share.

Doug Cramer 9 years, 11 months ago

Wonder if Tharp should red shirt. He could be a T-Rel type of player...only at point guard instead of the wing.

Alohahawk 9 years, 11 months ago

Depending on how far he's developed this summer and Self's luck in recruiting a top flight 2013 PG, Tharpe may be needed more this season than he will the following. Remember, he does have a year of Self ball under his belt and the PG position, in Self's system, requires a lot of development and thinking. That's one reason it took TT so long, he had the athletic speed but it took a while for his thinking to keep up. So Tharpe red-shirting this year makes less sense. Perhaps the next season would be a posibility. Lots of if's with this year's team of unknowns.

Freedman Moor 9 years, 11 months ago

Speaking Hampton, VA: I attended Hampton University in '95. At the time, Ronald Curry was a senoir at Hampton High. Not only was he the #1 rated QB in the nation, he was the #1 rated point guard. He was so good at QB that he completely overshadowed Michael Vick and Aaron Brooks. But as good as Curry was on the gridiron, the best QB to come out of Hampton (Ask anyone!) was Allen Iverson. He would have played football if not for that whole getting tossed into jail thing. John Thompson convinced the governor to pardon him, so it was all basketball all the time after that.

I hope KU brings in more VA talent in football and basketball. Virginia is the most underrated state when it comes to producing athletes. Iverson, Plaxico, Percy Harvin, Michael Vick, Aaron Brooks, Bruce Smith, LT, Alonzo Morning, Grant Hill, Vernon Macklin, Thomas Jones, and a huge list of others are all from VA.

Jeff Coffman 9 years, 11 months ago

Wow a lot of arrests and jail time in that group. And if not one of those, not considered good teammates.

Lance Hobson 9 years, 11 months ago

I watched Ronald Curry play a few times at UNC, he used to get booed by the fans. Maybe it was the offense, but he really stunk there at qb. They had a backup named Durant who started sharing time with him and actually moved the chains better. I always wondered why he quit bball there since he was clearly a below average college qb (could have been the Doherty thing). He had a cup of coffee with the Raiders as a receiver and that was it.

RecruitHawk 9 years, 11 months ago

Im Back... (feel free to ask any recruting questions and comments)

Chris Walker is a big miss no doubt but 2013 is a year with many good bigs. This will only help with Randle who I feel is starting to seriously consider KU.

Anthony Barber should be the biggest target. Although ku has Frankamp coming in in, and I do believe in his talent, I. Do not believe he can run a ku team at point his first year. Frank will have instant offense off the bench of course. Barber is the #3 pg in class no doubt. He is super quick and this talent shouldn't be passed up. He is down to ku bama and lville.

Barber he might want to play in college with SF troy williams (same aau teamates). KU is starting to show interest in williams. This ddoesn't make much jjjsense other than the fact it is to land barber.

jaybate 9 years, 11 months ago

Same year package deals are like herding cats.

They happen rarely.

So rarely, they ought to be called random occurrences.

master16 9 years, 11 months ago

imo, package deals will become more common, after the UK championship using so many freshmen. there will be more 'manufactured' teams out there to win it all. and good players will try to team up with each other in terms of recruiting more and more.

RecruitHawk 9 years, 11 months ago

Package Deals in the air now...

Of course harrison twins (both top 7) Combo Guard Al Freeman and PG Cat Barber (# 30 to 40 and top 10 respectively) SF Troy Williams (same as Freeman ranking) and Cat Barber PG Wes Clarke (#95 to 100) and SG James Young (top 5) And the biggest and most likely (other than twins) 2014 PG Tyus Jones (#1 PG #3ovr) and C Jahill Okafor (#1 C #2ovr) You could even say Walker to Florida was a package with Kasey Hill. Starting to happen more and more.

Lance Hobson 9 years, 11 months ago

The NCAA can't afford the loss in revenue. They'll lose a few scholarships and get a strongly worded letter.

blowhard 9 years, 11 months ago

Hey Einsteins:

For some unexplainable reason, our coaching staff appears brilliant and we were the best COLLEGE team in the CHAMPIONSHIP GAME this past season.

We're good and we're going to stay good.

Alohahawk 9 years, 11 months ago

"Blowhard" is an unusual nom de plume. But mahalo for the KU support. D*mn right the Jayhawks were the best college team with the best coaching staff in the championship game this past April. KU didn't lose to an NCAA college team, they just barely lost to a NBDL team.

Vernon Riggs 9 years, 11 months ago

2013 is the Year of the Big Man. Walker would have been nice. But 'who's next'? Randle, Lawrence, Shepherd, Mickey, Parker, Lee, Nichols or Anya all can step into that spot. All are talented. Very little difference between all of them. We wont' miss out on a BIG.

The final spot is PG. Barber or Jackson will fit that spot.

Greene Frankamp Barber/Jackson BIG

Good recruiting class.

RecruitHawk 9 years, 11 months ago

Randle would be a home run with Anya next best option. Randle is most polished forward coming out of high school since probably K Love. I'm starting to see more and more of randle getting closer with KU. I've been following his recruitment very closely and will keep everyone posted.

As for PG we need Barber. Jackson is nowhere near ready to run a program. I. See it possibly going down as. Greene, Frankamp, Barber, Randle, and Freeman with Barber. If it does end with a package to get Barber we still need a polished big that's ready. In this scenario I. See a potential transfer to free up a fifth scholly.

Vernon Riggs 9 years, 11 months ago

I think you gave one too many scholarships. I don't see BenMac going after one year. We have four to give. If Barber and Freeman are a Package Deal, then it's Roll Tide and NOT Rock Chalk.

Michael Bratisax 9 years, 11 months ago

You're obviously joking right? More polished than Anthony Davis? Kevin Durant? Blake Griffith? There are at least another five players who could be added to this list. A little hyperbole is one thing but let's not get ridiculous.

Michael Bratisax 9 years, 11 months ago

But what I should have added, is every bit of recruiting insights that you receive would be most appreciative.

dynamitehawk 9 years, 11 months ago

We have eight Freshmen next year. One is a projected one and done. Even though McLemore will be 20 in March <-- he was born when I was a senior in high school listening to Ditty's "Paperboy", with a mullet, a chew in, my hat on backwards, trolling for skank in my Jeep But I digress... As long as this core stays, PT will be an issue for many recruits who will be promised PT. HCBS will not negotiate playing time. Bravo Coach! Find the next T-Rob, sprinkle in the next Sherronatron, and Mario. I'm good.

Jeff Coffman 9 years, 11 months ago

I guess I don't get it. There are every year 1-3 players that are head and shoulders above the rest. There usually are about 10 that could get drafted straight out of HS, but outside of those few, they need college and development time. I look at Walker, who has declared himself as OAD, as someone that can go to Florida. Personally, i like the Frankamps and the Doyles and the Robinsons and the Morris twins as people that will stick around for 2-3 years. After seeing what Frankamp and Parker have been doing in the U17 championship, could you imagine us getting both of them. All I have to say is there are about 10-15 people that KU if they get will most likely work out, we just need to get 2-3 of them. In this case Walker was one of them, but clearly wasn't the only one.

REHawk 9 years, 11 months ago

jb, though JayDogger was insulting in his "freaking out" statement, he did ask a legitimate question about the pot scandal. Whence the "Wichita" connection? Did we miss an article?

REHawk 9 years, 11 months ago

Regardless of anyone's negative feelings re Isiah Thomas, it is a fine thing that he thinks enough of Bill Self and Jayhawk Hoops to recommend his former top FIU recruit to us. If Doyle works out as a future contributor, we might owe Isiah a huge thanks. This recruit looks to have lotsa upside. Money in the bank.

Alohahawk 9 years, 11 months ago

The Walker decision shore nuff brought out some good old fashioned discussions/debates today. Made an otherwise non-news day something interesting. Lots of regulars contributing, Jaybate "Going Long" as usual, and lots of incite filled opinions and projected possibilities.

Ahhh! How nice, these relaxing days of summer, sung to the 50's melody, "Standing on the Corner (ie. beach), watching all the girls stroll by." (in their dental floss bikinis!!! I swear they're getting skimpier and skimpier, as I get older and older. Ughh!)

REHawk 9 years, 11 months ago

Unless Ellis comes along like a house afire, I can't see Kevin Young playing less than 10-15 minutes per game

soapisurfriend 9 years, 11 months ago

I hate to say it but Jorgs can play. Watching him and Frankampenstein team up is special and they are dazzling. He's got a quick release and a tight handle that helps him dish it really well. Connor is better, from a scoring standpoint, but the Tigers got a good PG in Travis.

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