Monday, May 18, 2015
High-scoring Memphis Douglass High senior combo guard LaGerald Vick on Sunday committed to play basketball at Kansas University.
Vick, a 6-foot-5, 175-pounder who recently backed off a commitment to SMU, averaged 26.0 points and 11.0 rebounds a game for Douglass this past season. He averaged 24.0 points, 8.0 rebounds, 5.2 assists and 3.0 steals in 2013-14 and currently is leading scorer for his Team Thad AAU team in the Under Armour Association.
Vick chose KU over Kentucky, which recently offered Vick a scholarship, Kansas State, Auburn and others.
“I love the decision,” Team Thad coach Norton Hurd told the Journal-World on Sunday night. “I think under Bill Self and the Kansas system, by Year Two (at KU) he’ll be a Ben McLemore-type player. He is 6-5, has a silky-smooth jump shot (and) can score from all spots on the court. He can create for himself and others.”
Vick is currently ranked No. 137 in the recruiting Class of 2016 by Rivals.com. However, it is likely he will soon declare his intention to be in the Class of 2015 and be on the Jayhawks’ active 2015-16 roster with fellow incoming freshmen Carlton Bragg (6-9, Cleveland Villa Angela St. Joseph) and Cheick Diallo (6-9, Our Savior New American, Centereach, New York).
“No official decision has been made (on reclassifying from ’16 to ’15). There’s a really good chance he comes this year,” Hurd said. “I don’t care if he comes to school in 2025, he’s Rock Chalk Jayhawk-solid.”
Vick will join a perimeter that includes point guards Frank Mason and Devonté Graham, combo guard Wayne Selden Jr. and shooting guards Svi Mykhailiuk and Brannen Greene. Greene is coming off hip surgery and is expected to be fully healthy in September or October.
“He’s a natural 2-guard, very athletic. Coach Self said he’s going to have him play the 1, 2 and 3,” Hurd said. “He’s tall enough to play the 3. Two is his natural position, and he can handle the ball well enough to play 1. He’s going to have to get there, work hard and learn coach Self’s stuff. Talent-wise, he’s one of the most talented guys on the team as of right now, but he’s got to get there and work his butt off,” Hurd added.
Vick visited KU Wednesday through Friday following his visit to Kansas State. He had scheduled a visit to Kentucky but decided not to make that trip this week.
“He liked the facilities and the people at Kansas. He’s really happy with his decision,” Hurd said. “It was a toss-and-turn (decision). Kentucky and Kansas had the winning tradition. I feel in the last 48 hours he really took favor to coach Self. Everybody was making him a priority but in these past 48 hours he felt like Kansas made him a priority.”
Last October, Vick chose SMU over offers from Georgia Tech, Western Kentucky, Alabama, Memphis, Mississippi, Providence, Tennessee, Auburn, California, Baylor, Indiana, Florida State and others.
“I’m an all-around player. I’m not selfish,” Vick told the Memphis Commercial Appeal in describing his game. “I think I’m a 1 or a 2 (in college). Coach (Douglass’ Ted) Anderson helped me out a lot. At first I was just a person who shot the ball. I didn’t like attacking. He helped me out with my slashing ability.”
Self cannot comment on recruits until receipt of a letter-of-intent or signed scholarship papers. He now has 12 players on scholarship for next year, meaning there is one left to award.
“I can say we are still actively recruiting,” Self told the Journal-World on Sunday. “We hope we can get a big guy. It’s not something that has to be done or must be done, (but) it would help us moving forward having another big guy.”
Several big men who have announced plans to leave their current colleges are still on the market as transfers.
Rivals.com’s Eric Bossi on Vick: “He’s a long and rangy guard. He can create his own shot off the dribble, which is his biggest strength. He’s a good athlete and a streaky shooter from deep. He’s one of those guys that can get hot in a hurry, and our guys that have seen him so far this spring, have told me he’s improved significantly and we’ve got him ranked too low. Based off those people who I’ve received information from, he was going to be moved up to a four-star prospect, so I’m expecting to see a pretty good player this weekend (on AAU circuit).”
ESPN.com on Vick: “Vick is a long, athletic and quick wing that has a great knack to score and he can do it in a variety of ways. He can hit the open three, slash, get his own shot and is an above the rim finisher as well. Vick is productive and loaded with potential.
More recruiting: Recruiting experts now believe Alabama is the leader for Kobie Eubanks, a 6-5 former Baylor signee who had KU on his list prior to the Vick commitment. “Everything happens for reason...I will end up at the college God wants me to attend!!! It’s already written. #Driven#Movement continues,” Eubanks wrote Sunday on Twitter. ... Texas is believed the leader for former VCU commit Tevin Mack, 6-6 from Columbia, South Carolina, who will announce for a school Tuesday. He also had KU on his list.