Ottawa prep Semi Ojeleye picks Duke

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Semi Ojeleye, a 6-foot-6 senior forward from Ottawa High, orally committed to play basketball at Duke during Sunday’s in-home visit with Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski.

Ojeleye, who is ranked No. 30 in the Class of 2013 by Rivals.com, also had Indiana, Stanford and Oregon on his list. Kansas University did not have Ojeleye on its recruiting list.

KU coach Bill Self had a pair of in-home visits scheduled Sunday. He visited with 6-foot Wichita North commit Conner Frankamp in the morning and was slated to visit with Chris Jones, a 5-11 point guard from Northwest Florida State College, in the evening.

New name

KU is now recruiting Joel Embid, a 7-foot senior from Montverde (Fla.) Academy, ESPN.com reports. The unranked player also has Florida, Louisville, Texas, UCLA and others on his list.

Bill on Billy

Self tells ESPN he has not spoken to embattled Texas Tech coach Billy Gillispie for about a month. Gillispie is under fire at Texas Tech for allegedly practicing more hours than the NCAA allows and mistreatment of injured players.

“I do know that Billy is tough. I know that he only knows one way to do it, and that’s to be tougher, harder and more prepared than his opponent, period,” Self told ESPN.com. “To be honest with you, it’s a pretty successful method that a lot of coaches use. Billy’s different. He has his own motivating tactics.

“With Billy, you’re talking about a guy that’s gone from six wins to 24 wins (at UTEP). You’ve got a guy that has gone from zero conference wins (at Texas A&M) to the Sweet 16 in a short amount of time,” Self added. “He does have some experience doing it his way and doing it big. His way works.”

Self added ...

“Mistreatment of players should never occur, but there are also two sides to every story. That certainly appears to be the case here, because after hearing from his enemies early, now we’ve heard from guys who say, ‘Oh, man, he was so hard on me, but I’m a better man for it.’ Including players in his current program. As far as making guys practice and play when they’re hurt, it’s unfathomable to me that the guy that I know would put anyone out there in harm’s way intentionally. I have a hard time believing he would do that.”

Of the practice-time issue, Self said: “When did it happen? Did it happen over Thanksgiving break? Or did it happen when class was in session? If it happened over a break, then there’s absolutely no issue, because it’s totally legal. I do know that my players here think we practice a lot longer than we actually do. All players do. You could have a practice plan out there that says ‘96 minutes,’ and the players think, ‘Oh God, we’re going two-and-a-half hours today.’ Sometimes you stay on schedule, sometimes you don’t. But in their minds, everyone practices too long.”