Thursday, March 31, 2016

KU target Jackson excels in McDonald’s game

West forward Josh Jackson, right, from Justin-Siena high school/Prolific Prep Academy in Napa, Calif., blocks East forward Jayson Tatum from Chaminade College Preparatory school in St. Louis during the McDonald's All-American boys basketball game, Wednesday, March 30, 2016, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Matt Marton)

West forward Josh Jackson, right, from Justin-Siena high school/Prolific Prep Academy in Napa, Calif., blocks East forward Jayson Tatum from Chaminade College Preparatory school in St. Louis during the McDonald's All-American boys basketball game, Wednesday, March 30, 2016, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Matt Marton)


— Kansas University recruiting target Josh Jackson scored 19 points and earned co-MVP honors with future Duke player Frank Jackson as the West all-stars beat the East, 114-107, at Wednesday’s McDonald’s All-America game in United Center.

Duke’s Jackson hit five of seven threes en route to an identical 19 points.

Josh Jackson, who is considering KU, Michigan State and Arizona, hit nine of 11 shots with four rebounds and three assists.

Future KU player Udoka Azubuike scored nine points and grabbed eight rebounds in 15 minutes for the losing East team. Azubuike, a 6-foot-11 senior from Potter’s House in Jacksonville, Fla., hit four of six shots.


East center Udoka Azubuike, from Potter's House Christian Academy in Jacksonville, Fla., dunks against the West team during the McDonald's All-American boys basketball game, Wednesday, March 30, 2016, in Chicago. The West won 114-107. (AP Photo/Matt Marton)

Jayson Tatum had 18 points for the East, and Bam Abebayo added 16 points and 12 rebounds. Tatum also has committed to the Blue Devils. Lonzo Ball, who was named national player of the year, had a game-high 13 assists for the West. He is committed to UCLA.

The West led for most of the game. Markelle Fultz (10 points) showed off his long-range shooting with back-to-back threes to help the East close to 82-70, but the West responded with 11 straight points, highlighted by Frank Jackson’s back-to-back threes

Malik Monk, a 6-foot-3 shooting guard, energized the crowd with a reverse alley-oop for the West.


Adebayo 6-9 4-5 16, Tatum 5-15 8-8 18, Bradley Jr. 3-6 5-6 11, Fox 1-8-0-1 2, Ferguson 4-8 1-1 10, Bridges 4-7 0-0 8, Killeya-Jones 3-7 0-0 6, Jones 0-3 0-0 0, Simmons 5-11 1-2 12, Fultz 4-12 0-1 10, King 2-4 1-2 5, Azubuike 4-6 1-1 9. Totals 41-96 21-27 107


J.Jackson 9-11 0-2 19, Leaf 3-6 0-0 6, Allen 4-7 1-2 9, Ball 0-3 0-0 0, Monk 5-12 1-2 11, Guy 3-7 0-0 7, Bolden 6-8 1-2 13, Huell 1-8 0-2 2, Gilbert 3-7 1-2 7, Langford 5-10 1-2 12, F.Jackson 7-11 0-0 19, Collins 3-5 2-4 9. Totals 49-95 7-18 114.

Halftime-West 52-47. 3-Point goals-East 4-23 (Fultz 2-6, Ferguson 1-5, Simmons 1-5, Bradley Jr. 0-1, Killeya-Jones 0-1, Jones 0-1, Fox 0-2), West 9-25 (F.Jackson 5-7, Langford 1-1, J.Jackson 1-2, Collins 1-2, Guy 1-3, Huell 0-1, Ball 0-3, Monk 0-4). Fouled out-Leaf. Rebounds-East 54 (Adebayo 12), West 64 (Leaf 9). Assists-East 25 (Fox 7), West 35 (Ball 13). A-NA.


Suzi Marshall 6 years, 6 months ago

As I said in another post, Jackson looks like he might be the most complete and impactful player to come into the Kansas program since JoJo White. Like White, Jackson appears to have the BBIQ complemented by shooting, passing, ball handling skills that could put him in a truly special situation.

If we can remain healthy next season, Lucas can develop a 10 foot shot, and Mykailiuk returns, next years team could be 'the one' Kansas fans have been waiting for.

Steve Macy 6 years, 6 months ago

Got a favorite number? We can put it on a jersey. RCJH, come on to Lawrence.

Mick Allen 6 years, 6 months ago

Azubuike is a beast. His addition will certainly mitigate the loss of Diallo if that should occur. Jackson is obviously the real deal, good handles, good passer and a good mid range game. Allen looked good too, but is probably Texas bound.

Marius Rowlanski 6 years, 6 months ago

Right on Mick... I was awed by his physicality. If this kid sticks around a few years, which he has stated as one of his goals, he will be a beast. Diallo is gone. I know he hasn't signed with an agent yet but Self himself stated that he thought Diallo would continue the process of being drafted.

I doubt it, but maybe there is a slight chance of him coming back. If not, I really hope we land Thon unless the NCAA decides to once again put enough red tape that will delay him from playing.

No use in crying over spilt eggs but I really believe Self never gave Diallo the freedom on the court needed to get him to the next level. I feel bad for Diallo as the past year gained him nothing and probably hurt his draft prospects. I know that Coach Self knows what he is doing but I thought Vick possessed the tools to get more playing time. I know there is only but so many minutes but every minute wasted on Greene could have been better used on Vick. Hindsight is 20/20 but I thought it became obvious that Greene would not be returning. I actually thought he might transfer as he isn't ready for the NBA but I wish him good luck.

Jay Scott 6 years, 6 months ago

Best McDAA game in memory. Kids wanted to play D and share the ball. All the players interviewed were articulate and classy. The future of the game is in good hands.

Brian Skelly 6 years, 6 months ago

I concur. Most of these games are layup/dunk drills. There was plenty of that too, but it appears a lot of these kids wanted to prevent the other team from scoring as well. What a concept. Good luck to all of them. Hopefully a few of them will head our way.

Mallory Briggans 6 years, 6 months ago

diallo was a beast as well as did that work point being self wont use you if you cant play self style basketball.... ypu have to mold your game to the way self wants you to play ....not vise versa....The word on Diallo this year was he had a high motor ....likes to run the court......but thats not the offense ku ran most was more half court .....high-low sets and the use of Diallo at the 5.....he was overmatched because he wasnt strong enough inside..... is he a 4.......he wasnt used in that way but maybe it would have been a good thing to try.......Bragg and Diallo werent centers but Self had them play there.....both players were to me playing out of position.......

Jay Scott 6 years, 6 months ago

Diallo was good against high schoolers and in a pickup all star game. Despite playing for one of the best coaches in America, he was ineffective against college players.

There. That's more concise.

Barry Weiss 6 years, 6 months ago

I think with more playing time he could have been very effective.

Jay Scott 6 years, 6 months ago

Perhaps. That could be said of almost all players...Based on which outing that you saw promise? How much more time? At the expense of how many losses? Better than Lucas was?

Barry Weiss 6 years, 6 months ago

He only had a handful of games where he got over 15 minutes. Even then, other than the Okie State game, he probably was not with most of the other starters given his time may have been more in the clean up role after a game was pretty much decided. Coach knows better than anyone who should be out there and in Diallo's case, it appears to just be an unfortunate set of circumstances that led to his very limited minutes. For entertainment value, check out some of the articles on this web-site and the comments from many of the regulars here on articles about how he looked,, granted only against other McDonald's All Americans in the Nike Summit game, etc. My point is, he did not lose all that talent sitting on the bench. It just was not developed via playing time. If we would have "had" to have used him, I think he would have delivered. It appears we may never know.

Jay Scott 6 years, 6 months ago

In other words......... you have no reason that you can give to justify playing Diallo instead of players that had proven more effective.....

Barry Weiss 6 years, 6 months ago

well, if you reread my original post, I never indicated he should be playing instead of any other players. I simply made my own observation that I thought with more playing time he could have been very effective. If you feel differently, which apparently you do, I have no problem with that.

Jay Scott 6 years, 6 months ago

He wasn't/isn't a lost cause, he just wasn't developing and Lucas was. I perhaps mistook your thoughts for more of the all too common hysterics about how Diallo needed to play because he was the greatest player alive and Lucas was chopped liver.

Here's the point that escaped such thinkers. Lucas was not only better in the present, he'll possibly still be better by the end of next season, which is as long as anyone believes Diallo will be at Kansas. Lucas is proving he deserves the playing time.

Barry Weiss 6 years, 6 months ago

agreed, I will be the first to admit I was tweaked when Coach started going with Lucas those first few games. But Coach and Lucas proved that was the right move. Lucas was darn near a double double threat the last handful of games. I would have liked to see Diallo at the 4, but with Ellis, that just was not going to happen and with Jamari bringing so much hustle and experience with our offense. I did like the way Diallo caused opponents to pull back out on their drives. If he could have been in a situation where he consistently got 20-25 minutes per game, he too could have been a double double threat.

Freddie Garza 6 years, 6 months ago

Diallo has a world of talent, but he doesn't completely understand how to be a winner yet. When he played, I was often confused about some of the shots he would take, or his periods of unawareness within the offense.

He is eventually going to be a stud. Be he needs some time to develop his understanding of the game.

Marius Rowlanski 6 years, 5 months ago

Didn't Alexander also win the MVP or did he win one at the Nike classic?

Marius Rowlanski 6 years, 5 months ago

Mallory, I'm not nearly smart enough or have enough inside info to know if Self makes his players play his game or if he allows his players enough flexibility to play to their strengths as long as they fit into his overall philosophy.

I don't remember Bragg playing at the 5 but I'll take your word for it but I've noticed that Self often blurs the lines not having his players fit into cut out molds. I think he tries to capitalize on more on the matchups than anything else.

Harlan Hobbs 6 years, 6 months ago

Am highly impressed by all of the talent, especially at the position that Josh Jackson plays. The good news is that Arizona and Michigan State have already recruited kids who play that position and who were in last night's game. Therefore, I'll keep my fingers crossed, but it looks like Josh is coming our way, given his comments about the KU fans and the surroundings of playing in Allen Field House.

Of course, he will be a one and done, but that's the price you have to pay to get a player of his ability. They listed 4-5 players in last night's game who are supposedly NBA-ready now, and he was one of them.

You are right about Azubuike, Mick. Plus if I remember a previous article correctly, he won't be old enough to enter the NBA draft until after his sophomore season. Hope that is the case.

Like your reference to Jo Jo, Suzi. I was at KU when he played there, and I still consider him the best guard to ever play at KU. He was in control of the team form the moment he became eligible.

Seeing the 1966 championship game on ESPN between Texas Western (now Texas-El Paso) and Kentucky brought back a lot of memories of the "sneaker" controversy and Jo Jo's almost game winning shot against Texas Western that would have sent KU to the Final Four instead of them. What a great KU team that one was.

Jay Scott 6 years, 6 months ago

The end of real game was no where near as dramatic as the one in the movie. TW was in control the last 10 minutes. A great presentation of an important happening.

William Weissbeck 6 years, 6 months ago

True. TW did some unbelievably stupid things at the end that allowed KU back in. I believe there was a technical for hanging on the rim for one. That teams was a distant memory. The following two years were better teams but we lacked a true center. Hurt us when we played Elvin Hayes. One of those years we had an old fashioned home and away with Louisville and Wes Unseld. Lost at Allen, but beat them there. We also lost to TW that year I believe at a Chicago/Loyola Christmas "tournament."

Mick Allen 6 years, 6 months ago

Harlan, I share your thoughts about Azubuike. Coach will feel a lot more comfortable about his high low game as Az is a true back to the basket 5. He needs to be in better shape, as he looks like he can only go hard for 5 to 6 minutes at a time. He is a load and clears a lot of space under the boards. I would guess his scoring range is somewhat limited. Jay. I too recently watched the Texas Western Kentucky 1966 and agree the outcome was never in doubt the last 9 or 10 minutes. One thing that struck me in watching and listening to the broadcast was the play by play man's[ Murray I believe] statement toward the end of the game when it became apparent that Texas Western was going to win, when he said Kentucky was having trouble playing them because they played " such an unorganized style of basketball". I don't know if he was the Kentucky broadcaster or not but nevertheless, in today's social context this would be viewed as a racist statement and unfortunately when it was said it was probably an accurate reflection of the mindset predominantly in the south, but that which existed to a certain extent everywhere. The statement seemed so inappropriate that it shocked me. I also found it interesting that while Haskins was shown frequently, the Baron of the Bluegrass, Rupp, was pictured only a couple of times. I'm sure it was a bitter pill for Adolph who had refused to play teams with African Americans until after this loss.

Jay Scott 6 years, 6 months ago

That comment jumped out at me too. After the question of racism went through my mind, I thought of how TW was more like a modern military, attacking at seams and weaknesses of their opponent while Kentucky was like an old 1700's army, lining up in formation to exchange volleys. Basketball was changing in several ways, right before our eyes.

Marius Rowlanski 6 years, 5 months ago

Again I agree Mick. Azubuike is a true 5 spot player. He will give us a much stronger presence in the middle than we've had in recent years. I'm guessing that Coach Self will probably switch playing time between Azubuike and Lucas. I don't see either player at the 4 spot.

Waylon Cook 6 years, 6 months ago

Udoka is not as raw as we were led to believe imo!

Jay Scott 6 years, 6 months ago

It's hard to evaluate true bigs in the McDAA. There are no plays runs for them, no screen and roll action, no high low, no nothing. Just rebounds and the odd lob.

Mallory Briggans 6 years, 6 months ago are the scouting reports and rankings a true gauge of a players we put to much stock in what the scouts think......a coach knows a players strengths and weaknesses and recruit a player that fits your program......the kobe and lebrons of the world come along every so often......not that diallo was either self may be one of the best coaches in america.....but thats why we keep getting bounced in the tourney.....

Andy Tweedy 6 years, 6 months ago

So I take it from the posts here, Jackson to KU is a real possibility? I don't follow recruiting. I used to, but once I realized they were or weren't coming here despite any amount of angst I had, I decided to just cheer when they signed and move on when they didn't.

Dee Shaw 6 years, 6 months ago

I wonder what drama will come once he signs with KU on his eligibility.

Steve Zimmerman 6 years, 5 months ago

You will know when a great athlete says something when he really means it. JJ is one of those. He will only play for someone that he can really trust. That's an important thing for him. Be prepared, next year is going to be special for KU bball!!!

"For one, the amazing history that's there," Jackson said. "To think I could be a part of something so great that's been around for so many years and had so much success is special. Coach Self, you know, he's a great coach and he's another coach who pushes his players and makes them better, and when I went there on my official visit there a few months ago, I got a real family feel in the atmosphere. Everything was so family-oriented, and I feel I could trust people there."

Harlan Hobbs 6 years, 6 months ago

Thanks much for the history lesson, Mick. Nobody has the depth of knowledge about KU's history as you do. As I have said before, it is clearly in the genes.

Recently, given that KU has been blessed with so many great coaches, someone asked who we thought was the best. I stated my opinion that nobody will ever surpass Phog Allen, as he was the one who started the legacy. It was nice to read Coach Self's comment the other day about such subjects. He said something like "It is impossible to tell anybody you're the best at KU when you realize that Phog Allen coached and Wilt Chamberlain played here."

Mick Allen 6 years, 5 months ago

Thanks Harlan, but again you give me too much credit. I guess if you are around KU basketball for 67 years and you hear basketball discussed frequently including coaching philosophy, it is hard not to "absorb" some feel for the game.

Harlan Hobbs 6 years, 6 months ago

P.S. You're a close second to Mick, Mr. Weissbeck. You both clearly surpass me when it comes to that kind of detail.

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