Monday, June 8, 2015

New arrivals: Rookies Bragg, Vick busy at camp

Cleveland prep forward Carlton Bragg — who has committed to Kansas University — poses for a photo prior to Wednesday’s McDonald’s All-American Game in Chicago.

Cleveland prep forward Carlton Bragg — who has committed to Kansas University — poses for a photo prior to Wednesday’s McDonald’s All-American Game in Chicago.


Cleveland native Carlton Bragg, who arrived on Kansas University’s campus a day before the start of 2015 summer school classes and World University Games practices, admitted it was hard to say goodbye to family and friends back home in Ohio.

“It was all sad. Everybody takes me out to dinner and stuff (before leaving). It was family time, so it was pretty good,” Bragg, a 6-foot-9, 225-pound McDonald’s All-American, said Sunday afternoon after signing autographs for 21⁄2 hours at Bill Self’s KU basketball camp.

“All the memories ... we just won the state championship, so it was pretty tough for me to leave it, but I’m starting a new chapter.”

Bragg, who averaged 21.3 points and 8.0 rebounds a game last season for state champ Villa Angela-St. Joseph High (23-4), had a full first day in Lawrence, that’s for sure.

After sitting at a table and signing for more than 600 campers, he then conducted a media interview before playing pick-up basketball with his new teammates, including freshman roommate Lagerald Vick.

Next, he slam-dunked with Vick, Wayne Selden Jr. and Frank Mason III at the parent/child camp orientation session before breaking free for dinner.


Incoming Kansas freshman Lagerald Vick autographs a basketball with teammates at the Bill Self Basketball Camp on Sunday, June 7, 2015, at Anschutz Pavilion.

“It feels good to be here. I’m very excited to see what’s in store for us,” Bragg said.

He arrived in good physical condition, working out regularly on the treadmill back home.

“I was running elevation laps. That helped me a lot,” Bragg said. “I was doing 6 minutes a mile, so that was pretty good, kind of hard though.”

“When I first started out, it was horrible. It started progressing.”

He said he hit the treadmill, “because going into my high school career, I was always winded. I wanted to try something new. Coming into college, I knew it was a big stage, and the court was bigger.”

He also chose the treadmill as a form of exercise because “I saw LeBron do it with the elevation thing. It looked pretty cool,” he said of Cleveland Cavs phenom LeBron James. “He’s from Ohio. I’m from Ohio also. I’m a big fan.”

He said he would not be devastated if James and the Cavs fell in the NBA Finals to the Golden State Warriors.

“No, I mean, you just lost Kyrie (Irving) and K-Love (Kevin Love, to injuries),” Bragg said. “I think they can still pull it off, though.”

Bragg, who will wear jersey No. 15 at KU, showed his youthful exuberance Sunday when asked if KU will try to win the University Games rather than just bond as a team prior to the October start of the 2015-16 campaign..

“We will (win title). We will,” Bragg said with a smile.

Bragg and Vick are the first two KU newcomers to arrive this summer. Freshman Cheick Diallo has some paperwork to complete in New York and likely won’t be here until second session of summer school. Ole Miss transfer Dwight Coleby is playing for the Bahamas National Team in the Caribbean Basketball Federation Tournament and also will be here for second session summer school. Diallo and Coleby are not from the U.S., thus can’t play for KU in the World University Games.

“They’re both great,” KU junior point guard Mason said of Vick and Bragg. “I’ve seen a couple highlights, not really watched them live. I watched Carlton in the McDonald’s game. I like his motor, just his personality, who he is. He can shoot the ball, take it off the dribble. He defends. I’m excited to help him. I can’t wait to start practice tomorrow (today, for July 3-14 Games in South Korea).”

Coach Bill Self said Sunday: “I’m excited to have them both here. I think both will be terrific. I think it will take them both time. I’m certainly excited to have them both here and get started.”

Bragg is known to have a soft touch for a big guy.

“He’s a good shooter. He shoots it pretty well,” Self said.

The best part of Bragg’s game? “My motor,” Bragg said. “I’ve gotten a lot better with my motor.”

This, that: Bragg on his new roommate Vick, who will wear jersey No. 2: “He’s a pretty cool guy. I love his personality.” ... KU’s Jamari Traylor was due in Sunday night and Sviatoslav Mykhailiuk today. They were on flights from Chicago and Ukraine, respectively, Sunday. ... KU’s players will go to South Korea with knowledge of the country. They will be tutored on the history and customs. ... Former KU players Aaron Miles and Jeff Hawkins are working as coaches at Self’s camp. After introducing Miles to the campers, Self joked, “Aaron, they are too young to remember you." He then explained to the campers, “Aaron is fourth all-time in the NCAA in assists for his career — fourth! The reason he got a lot of assists is he was one of the worst shooters all time in the NCAA,” Self added, breaking up Miles and the campers and their parents. “Aaron and Hawk are working camp. It’s always great to have them here.”


Rodney Pain 7 years, 4 months ago

In a couple of years, Mr. Bragg is going to be the next great Jayhawk. Book it! Very impressive young man.

Marius Rowlanski 7 years, 4 months ago

I happen to agree Rodney. Bragg will have his jersey retired one day.

Aaron Paisley 7 years, 4 months ago

I didn't realize Miles was that high up on the NCAA's all time list. I knew he was KU's and the Big 12's all time leader, but man I miss him dishing to Langford and Simien.

Tony Bandle 7 years, 4 months ago

Bill is just kidding, of course, but Aaron had a lot of options better than himself, so he took them!

Joe Joseph 7 years, 4 months ago

Unofficially it looks like Miles is 9th all-time among D1 NCAA athletes.

Robert Brock 7 years, 4 months ago

Are the guys eating a lot of kimchi yet?

Jonathan Allison 7 years, 4 months ago

Self is being a little bit hard on Miles. He shot 46% from the field, 50% from three (40 of 80) and 79% from the FT line his senior year.

Ryan Zimmerman 7 years, 4 months ago

Every time I watch a highlight of Diallo I think to myself "I hope you remember to not flex after big plays when at KU" :) He seems to do that frequently on his highlight videos. Love the attitude, just be careful... Just ask Cliff

Fred Whitehead Jr. 7 years, 4 months ago

Uh...."signing autographs???? Hey folks, it is almost time for football!! Are any of the KU linemen "signing autographs?? I thought not.

This story reeks of the past glorifications that this newspaper has heaped on prospective KU basketball players have received and then gone on to the great floppola in the national tournament.

When will you learn to give it a rest? I know you are suffering from poor circulation, that is the problem with print newsrags these days. But this stupid reporting on high school kids who have not even gone on the court in a game yet is beyond belief.

Autographs, indeed!! They might just as easily end up in the fire place next March.

Robert Robinson 7 years, 4 months ago

Fred, I think the saddest part of this article is the fact you read it. I feel sorry for people like you who can't find anything positive around them. If you know you won't won't like the article, don't read it.

Keith Gellar 7 years, 4 months ago

looks like Bragg didn't get the memo about hating Lebron. After how he treated Mario and banished Wiggins to irrelevant land,All KU fans should despise him and hope for him to fail.

Rodney Crain 7 years, 4 months ago

Treated Mario? You mean getting him two rings? Banished Wiggins? It's a business not how to be best buddies with everyone. He preferred Love, hard to argue that at the time. Today he might have a different perspective.

Do I like everything Lebron does, nope. Do I think he is clearly one of, if not the best player on the planet, there can be no doubt. It is Jordan like what he is doing in the finals this year. Pure will and skill, just an amazing effort.

If you appreciate the game you have to acknowledge his play.

Fred Whitehead Jr. 7 years, 4 months ago

Robert, the fact is that I did read the article. I don't know if these new high school kids can make a difference the KU basketball team. Neither does anyone else.

They just walked in the door.

And they are already distributing autographs. I have never, ever heard of such activity in any other venue.

You usually gain acclaim by performing. These kids have not done anything. So how is it that they deserve all this acclaim? Past experience with these "one year wonders" has been less than satisfactory. And then they pack up and leave eschewing the chance to gain an education that will benefit after they cannot toss a ball into a hoop anymore.

So why all the hype now even before the football season has started?? They should be required to perform on the court in a game before such praise is given.

Ron Sterling 7 years, 4 months ago

Signing autographs isn't about giving the players big heads. It's about them doing something nice for kids that, I dunno, maybe aspire to be sitting in those seats someday signing autographs for another generation.

And believe it or not, getting a scholarship to play basketball for a university is accomplishing something. In many cases it's a huge something. It's the result of countless hours spent single-mindedly honing a craft. It's the result of passing on the mindless activity most of us spent our youth on in order to make one's self better. Do you know how many Kansas players likely wouldn't have had the opportunity to even attend college if it wasn't for their basketball prowess. Don't feel the need to crap on somebody else's accomplishments just because you don't have your own to crow

Dale Kroening 7 years, 4 months ago

Are you serious Fred ??? Have you ever been to a basketball camp or camp ran by big time coaches or programs ? Yes players who haven't played any college basketball sign autographs for kids , it happens all over the country . Where have you been ?

Parker JH 7 years, 4 months ago

They are signing autographs for kids who could care less what type of player these guys turn into. The only thing the kids care about is that these guys are Jayhawk players and they think that it is awesome that they get to the meet them. A walk-on or an all-conference player it doesn't matter. So, no, I don't think these guys need to earn the right to make a kids day.

Scott Proch 7 years, 4 months ago

Cleveland to Minneapolis is banishment?

Marius Rowlanski 7 years, 4 months ago

Great point! Which team got the better end of the deal?

Rodney Crain 7 years, 4 months ago

New Rules approved for men's bb next season -

The big ones are - 30-second shot clock, a four-foot restricted-area arc and with four timeouts instead of five (with no more than three carrying over from the first to the second half).

— Players will be given a six-foul limit during 2016 postseason play other than the NCAA tournament. — Officials can consult video monitor feeds for potential shot clock violations throughout the game, not just in the final minutes. — Teams will be awarded one shot when opponents are called for technical fouls for hanging on the rim or delay of game. — The five-second, closely guarded rule while dribbing the ball is eliminated. — Dunking in pregame warmups and halftime warmups is no longer prohibited.

These are all overdue!

Marius Rowlanski 7 years, 4 months ago

30 second clock means more bad shots - just quicker. Scoring has dropped since lowering the shot clock to 35 sec, why will going to 30 sec reverse it?

Going to 6 fouls for only the BIG 12 tournament is ridiculous and will just lead to the refs calling more fouls.

The 5 second rule rewarded good defense, don't see how it makes the game better.

More reviews will slow the game, esp when it takes several minutes even when the review is clear cut.

Dunking in warmups? Didn't even know that there was a rule prohibiting it.

Why does everyone want college ball to be identical to the NBA?

Rodney Crain 7 years, 4 months ago

Interesting take Marius considering that almost anyone associated with the game, including our coach, our conference and everyone in college ball agreed that changes needed to be made.

The 30 second clock works fine in the womans game, thats right they have had a 30 second clock for a while. Btw scoring increases with a shorter clock so not sure what in the world you are talking about???

6 fouls only has a little support. I do not think this is that big of deal, it will be interesting to see if giving the better players another foul will help. Who cares if its not in the NCAA's?

5 second rule, I do not agree with you. With the 30 second clock there just will not be enough time to hold the ball like that anymore. You have to keep it moving. The rule is not always called correctly either. Just does not happen alot anymore. Again no big deal.

More reviews could slow the game, but if it means getting the call right why would you be against that? If anything limit the time to review like other leagues, you get 60 or 90 seconds and thats it. Most people at home see the replay is 20 seconds or less. This is just poor organization in basketball. The content is there they just do not have it set up right at court level. Heck the commentators sitting courtside see it right away.

Dunking, to me it is stupid to dunk in warmups. Typically players do it to pump up the crowd, there is very little reason to practice it in warmups. Why risk the injury? Check with our Roderick Stewart, he might have a comment on this. This means that no offical has to watch warmups to call the violation. Again no big deal.

Why do people like you want to shy away from change when clearly, clearly something needed to be done. The NBA is a different game, with different rosters not sure they would ever look the same.

Alex Resnik 7 years, 4 months ago

I agree that the 30 second shot clock is a move in the correct direction, but I really don't like the removal of the 5 second call. This will just allow a superstar to hold the ball for the last 15 seconds of the clock and drive to get fouled. This is what the NBA has turned into, a superstar league. If the NCAA is not careful, then we are on the same path (if they are trying to highlight the superstars, then God help us all)

Marius Rowlanski 7 years, 3 months ago

Btw scoring increases with a shorter clock so not sure what in the world you are talking about???

"Scoring plunged in college basketball soon after the shot-clock cycle was trimmed from 45 seconds to 35, from a 45-second high of 76.7 in 1991 to 70.2 in 1997. That’s a dozen fewer points per game between the two teams"

"Per team scoring fell from 68.01 points per game in 2011-12 to 67.50 this past season, the lowest average of the shot-clock era—in fact, the lowest since 1952."

So obviously scoring DOESN'T necessarily increase with shorter clocks and the data proves that.

I guess when it comes to college basketball I would be called a traditionalist. Some changes such as the three point shot have undoubtedly made the game better but not every change has improved the game.

If you read the above article Rodney, it shows that not everyone or an overwhelming majority were in favor of reducing the shot clock. If that was so it would have been changed long before now as nearly every year it has been considered.

I've noticed Rodney that you seem to take a difference of opinion as a personal attack which is clearly shown by your response. I was just stating my opinions which is what I thought this forum was about. I had meant to thank you for posting the rule changes. I would have thought that the LJW would have done so.

If you take me having a different position as a personal attack then that's on you. I'm not interested in getting into any other agenda and if that's not good enough for you, I will no longer respond to your posts. There have been several that I have agreed on and stated so. Up to you.

Tony Bandle 7 years, 4 months ago

HEY!!! What happened to my suggestions that all cheerleaders wear bikinis and there be an unlimited nacho bar!!?? :(

Marius Rowlanski 7 years, 4 months ago

That's a rule change that will benefit the the fans...esp those at the game.

Mick Allen 7 years, 4 months ago

Rodney, I agree wholeheartedly with your opinion on the rule changes. Initially I was not sure about doing away with the 5 second call, but as you pointed out with a 30 second shot clock, an offensive player will need to be getting his team into the offense and I agree it was inconsistently called.

Marius Rowlanski 7 years, 3 months ago

If consistency was the measure used to justify rule changing, what should be done about calling offensive charging, blocking, traveling, palming, in bounding, etc. Should we stop the game in order to review the play every time to make sure we get it right?

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