Friday, December 22, 2017

Power forward Silvio De Sousa officially cleared to join the Jayhawks

Class Of 2018 big man Silvio De Sousa of IMG Academy continues to pursue the possibility of enrolling at Kansas early in time to join the Jayhawks this season. De Sousa, the No. 25 overall player in his class according to, committed to Kansas in August, signed with the Jayhawks in November and was officially cleared to join the Jayhawks on Dec. 22. He will report to campus on Dec. 26 and will be eligible to compete in games after being certified by the NCAA, a process that could be done in time for the Big 12 opener, Dec. 29 at Texas.

Class Of 2018 big man Silvio De Sousa of IMG Academy continues to pursue the possibility of enrolling at Kansas early in time to join the Jayhawks this season. De Sousa, the No. 25 overall player in his class according to, committed to Kansas in August, signed with the Jayhawks in November and was officially cleared to join the Jayhawks on Dec. 22. He will report to campus on Dec. 26 and will be eligible to compete in games after being certified by the NCAA, a process that could be done in time for the Big 12 opener, Dec. 29 at Texas.


The Kansas men's basketball team officially has a new big man.

KU coach Bill Self told the Journal-World Friday night that Class of 2018 power forward Silvio De Sousa, who committed to KU in August and signed a letter of intent during the early signing period in November, had officially been permitted to graduate from IMG Academy, clearing the way for De Sousa to join the Jayhawks in time for the second semester.

“Silvio has completed the required coursework that will enable him to graduate and report to KU,” Self said. “We are now working through the NCAA's amateurism process and hope to have him certified as soon as possible for game competition. He is eligible to practice immediately and will report (to campus) on the 26th.”

Friday's news ends a process that spanned several weeks of waiting for test scores and final exams and brings to life an idea that dates back to De Sousa first dreaming of joining the Jayhawks early when he committed to KU.

Self said De Sousa would not be able to participate in a game until he is certified by the NCAA, making next Friday's Big 12 Conference opener at Texas a possibility and almost guaranteeing that De Sousa will suit up for Kansas in early January at the latest.

In De Sousa, who will wear No. 22 at KU, the Jayhawks are getting a player who, though young and in need of time to adjust to the Division I level, should be able to provide meaningful minutes right away and important depth for KU's front court.

His size and skill set will provide immediate help for KU's thin front line and Self said he thought the Angola native could be plugged into games for spot minutes right away as an additional rebounder and defender alongside 7-foot sophomore Udoka Azubuike and 6-8 sophomore Mitch Lightfoot while he learns KU's systems and figures out how to play with his new teammates.

Self said the entire acclimation process would likely take De Sousa "a couple weeks," but there's no doubt that adding the No. 25-ranked player in the 2018 recruiting class provides Kansas a huge lift as it prepares to make a run at consecutive Big 12 title No. 14.

The Jayhawks are off for the weekend, most of them back home with their families for the holidays, and will report back to campus on Tuesday.

KU is still awaiting some sort of resolution in the Billy Preston situation, as the freshman McDonald's All-American has missed all 12 games while KU officials investigate a compliance issue involving his vehicle, but the addition of De Sousa significantly reduces the pressure associated with getting Preston back.


David Kelley-Wood 4 years, 4 months ago

Awesome. Welcome aboard to Silvio De Sousa (maybe KU's very own "March King").

Marius Rowlanski 4 years, 4 months ago

One down and one to go. I think we still need Preston but having Silvio available is fantastic news. And maybe Mitch Lightfoot can get some more playing time at his actual position.

Tony Bandle 4 years, 4 months ago

Dok, 7'-0" & 280, Billy, 6'-10" & 240, Silvio 6'-8" & 240....maybe the basketball team can loan some players to the football team! :).

These three on the court together will present a real challenge to a lot of teams, assuming Billy makes it which appears to be the case.

Marius Rowlanski 4 years, 4 months ago

You would think so but players this tall rarely play in the NFL. I don't believe there's ever been someone taller than 6'9". On the other side though, there have been several players under 5'9". Darren Sproles (best little player in the NFL?) comes in around 5'6".

Bill Horton 4 years, 4 months ago

Morris Stroud, tight end, played for the Chiefs in the late 60's and early 70's. He was listed at 6'10".

Joe Ross 4 years, 4 months ago

You're right Marius.

There are not a lot of tall players in the NFL. I suspect that the reason for this is that tall people get winded easily. Their hearts have to pump a lot of blood to more body tissue and, importantly, against gravity. I've been hearing reports, for example, that people over 6'2" have much greater risk of blood clots developing and breaking free because of their height. Increased risk is associated with the INCH. The circulatory system in tall individuals struggles to keep up with those of shorter stature. And when you think of the nature of football, where the action is not only constant, but grueling as grown men are basically "wrestling" with other, strong men, you can see quite easily how tall individuals might get winded too easily to play the game.

After all, Ed "Too Tall" Jones was given his nickname for a reason. Players like him have been a rarity in the NFL.

Tony Bandle 4 years, 4 months ago

Harold Carmichael for the Eagles,,...wasn't he about 6'-10"?

Joe Ross 4 years, 4 months ago

The idea is less about whether you can name a tall player in the NFL and more about what percentage of players are tall. The number is surprisingly small. It goes against intuition. One would think the taller the man, the better chance he has of playing in the NFL. It turns out it's not that way beyond a certain height.

RJ King 4 years, 4 months ago

Yes. Tall people generally have long legs and a much higher center of gravity. Once in stride it helps, but it takes longer for their limbs to unwind and get going. Basketball is somewhat conducive to that with fewer strides needed to run the floor (and obviously a 10' basket). Football plays low to the ground and the high center of gravity is mostly a liability.

David Hodges 4 years, 4 months ago

Richard Sligh is tallest NFL player ever. He was over 7'. He played for the Raiders in the late 60's.

Suzi Marshall 4 years, 4 months ago

YES!!! I’ve only checked this site two dozen times today looking for this news. Better late than never. Merry Christmas Jayhawks Nation, we have a team that can go the distance back in San Antonio!!!

Richard Duran 4 years, 4 months ago

Merry Christmas to the Big 12! this is awesome news! BISDS! I hope he can give good minutes right away!

Humpy Helsel 4 years, 4 months ago

Udunka just got better. Mitch just got better. And Billy just got better. The guards even just became better. Nothing like having to fight for minutes. Silvio, I just have one word to say. Rebound! OK. I could come up with more than the one word, but I will settle for just the one word for right now. In the words of Bill Self after last night's game, "the Big 12 is a beast this year." Amen to that.

Lex Valdez 4 years, 4 months ago

We`re back and Christmas has arrived early! RCJH!

Mike Kendall 4 years, 4 months ago

YES! Welcome aboard. The Big 12 Conference grind will test Silvio but the Hawks know what what they need to do to win the League. GREAT NEWS! Bad news for the Longhorns. Hee, hee.

Andy Godwin 4 years, 4 months ago

Will likely help, but Preston is more important NOW. Predicted before season this team was most likely the one to end the streak, and that was before Preston was removed from the equation. Doubting Self is normally futile, but the Big 12 appears to have more fire power than originally thought and KU is still not firing on all cylinders.

As written on ESPN site, Self recruitment miss may help end the streak - “Kansas does not, however, have the best player in the conference this season. He plays for Oklahoma. And the Jayhawks are surrounded by a collection of programs that could make the pursuit of No. 14 the most difficult fight of Self's tenure.”

In September, Young -- who picked Oklahoma over Kansas -- told about his vision to end KU's reign.

"I want to break Kansas' [Big 12 title] streak," Young said then. "It's not going to be easy, by any means, but that's something that I'm going to be hard on all year. If I would have [gone] to Kansas, I would have been a little bit different, but I wanted to break that streak. That's my goal. We're gonna do it. I have all faith in God that that's what his plan is." With a week to go before Big 12 play commences, nothing about his plan sounds crazy”, writes Myron Medcalf.

Time will tell KU faithfuls, but De Sousa will likely not have much impact until well into Big 12 play. Preston will give KU a better shot to impact Big 12 play, De Sousa maybe can help if KU advances in the postseason. As we know, it takes much time for any player, let alone a freshman, to learn Self’s system and more importantly his trust. De Sousa is way behind in both categories.

Bradley Vogel 4 years, 4 months ago

"God's plan is to end KU's streak"? I think He has more important things to consider and act on than the longest conference title streak in NCAA history . . .

Kent Richardson 4 years, 4 months ago

Young has the skills that we struggle against. Comparing him to Curry with the super quick release on the 3 balls is valid so far. I know, but he is showing so far that is the case. He penetrates and can get off floaters and soft off the glass 3 an 4 feet "layup's. He will leave Vick, DeVonte and Newman flailing almost every time.

He is now basking in praise and glory from comments as "best guard in the country" and leader for "player of the year" honors. How he handles this will be his biggest hurdle.

He appears to believe all this hype and is glowing and giddy in his on court reactions to his successes. But if you watch him when things go against him, like a little physicality or a questionable foul call, he gets petulant. Then he gets unfocused, chippy and a little flamboyant with his passes and shots. This leads to turnovers and since he is the engine of their offense it goes stagnant. Can this be tapped into? No so sure with our team but maybe a WVU slap upside the head may be interesting to watch. My thinking that he may get in his own way sounds defeatist but history shows it's not that unlikely. (This is all from HS articles and watching three games this year so I'm am a certifiable expert). LOL.

Pre conference success is not a reliable indicator of season success, as we see year in and year out. So maybe the rest of the Big XII can make it possible for us to stay in touch until we get our front court in the swing of things.

We always get every team's best effort and how will OU stand up to the same treatment?

Tony Bandle 4 years, 4 months ago

Heck, we all know God favors Duke..or at least all refs who give Duke every break possible.

PS just kidding, God. :)

Barry Weiss 4 years, 4 months ago

Trae Young is amazing. I think he will have a legit shot for player of the year, certainly in the b-12, maybe in the nation. We will see how he handles the b-12 grind.

Marius Rowlanski 4 years, 4 months ago

Everybody has a plan until they get punched in the nose. A boxing analogy for basketball but it still holds true. We haven't won 13 times in a row because we were always the best or had the best player. We won as a team.

All streaks end but I usually don't care about one prediction from one player.

Bryce Landon 4 years, 4 months ago

The only thing better than one early Christmas present is two early Christmas presents. First a 21-point win over Stanford, now Silvio De Sousa joins KU!

Allan Olson 4 years, 4 months ago

Merry XMAS to Mitch, and hopefully now with the potential addition of Preston soon, also a very happy New Year. Now you can concentrate more on your outside game for a change. COME ON NCAA!

Chris Shaw 4 years, 4 months ago

In one of the more disinteresting non-conference seasons I’ve watched under Self...the season completely flips and makes for one of more interesting conference seasons Self has ever had at KU.

We all know Self likes his routine, rhythm, and and progression consistency with his rosters. He’s always had his different seasons within the season.

For once, it’s kind of nice to see Self squirm, get frustrated, and have to work harder than normal because of his current roster make up.

Imo it’s been one of the more unusual and quite frankly boring seasons so far but on the flip side, I’m enjoying watching Self squirm and now I’m quite tuned in on how he’s going to juggle Cunliffe, De Sousa, and hopefully Preston soon in the lineup.

We all know Self can’t stand losing conference games and it’s very hard for him to venture away from guys he trusts and what he knows like the 7 guys who have been playing all season.

I mean, look at how slow Self has incorporated Cunliffe...and those were non-conference games. We’ve also witnessed what happened with Diallo and he only missed 5 games of the season a couple years ago.

I’m very very very...let me say that again...Very Interested to see how Self incorporates De Sousa into this lineup after missing 12 games. I’m even more interested to see how Self incorporates Preston if he ever gets eligible.

I’m actually laughing as i write this because i do think it’s going to be comical watching De Sousa and or Preston try to catch up to speed in the middle of the conference season. Self has never had a blueprint for this.

How quickly and frustrated is Self going to get when these two kids just screw up back to back in the middle of an important conference game?

I mean, we all thought (at least i did) that Diallo got a raw deal and wasn’t able to play through mistakes when he was in the roster but it’s going to be really eye opening to see how Self handles De Sousa and Preston with PT, especially with so much on the line during the middle of the conference slate.

Is he going for 14 or is he going to prepare this team for a Natty run? Is it even possible to do both? Can self manage not 1 but 2 very inexperienced frosh big guys after missing 12-13 games and incorporate them into the conference season in probably the most important conference race of any season in college basketball in 4 decades?

I’m buckled in to see how Self’s production plays out. What’s turned into a very boring season thus far has all of a sudden gotten quite entertaining. Get the popcorn.

Tony Bandle 4 years, 4 months ago

I predict a six way tie for the Big 12 Championship....but that still means #14 for KU!!!

Randy Glenn 4 years, 4 months ago

Good news...but since the NCAA still has a say I will wait til its ok with them...then its GREAT news!!!!!!

John Brazelton 4 years, 4 months ago

Self almost never plays over 9 players. If Preston is cleared, who becomes Self's bench sitter? De Sousa, Garrett or Lightfoot?

Tony Bandle 4 years, 4 months ago

John, if De Sousa sits on the bench, KU Nation will riot. I think there will be no "Bench Guy" but rather an equal distribution of BT between Conliffe, Garrett and Lightfoot but all still in the mix for games.

Harlan Hobbs 4 years, 4 months ago

Correct, Randy. Given KU's experience with the certification process and the NCAA, this could continue to drag on. Hopefully, much information has already been presented to the NCAA, so that they aren't starting from scratch. I suspect that the information has been given based upon how thorough KU is under Bill Self.

Having the scholarship available mid-season probably didn't occur totally by accident.

Dirk Medema 4 years, 4 months ago

Didn't Whitman leave before DeSousa even committed? Bagley would have been more of a motive, but still doesn't seem likely to me, though you're welcome to conspire I guess.

Marius Rowlanski 4 years, 4 months ago

Whitman left Kansas in mid-July, long before Silvio came into the picture. We once tried using the final scholarship for that forward from Western Kentucky who decided to go back to Western Kentucky.

That might not happen often but it looks like we just lucked out that Silvio could recertify.

Edward Daub 4 years, 4 months ago

LOL! Billy's Car was really ticked off after the Curb Damage. The Car Sang "Nothin' from Nothin' leaves Nothin' , You Gotta have Somethin' (Repair $'s??) if You Wanna be with me"!

Jeff Kilgore 4 years, 4 months ago

It’s just great news. He’ll be in uniform next year too!

Marius Rowlanski 4 years, 4 months ago

Hope you are right but no guarantee. Silvio will be eligible to test the NBA at the end of the season. He is already 19 years old but if he helps gets us into the Final Four or better, it still would have been worth it.

Charles Millison 4 years, 4 months ago

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe to be eligible for the NBA Draft you have to be 1 year removed from HS graduation in addition to being 19 yo. So Silvio should be here next year as well.

Marius Rowlanski 4 years, 4 months ago

Almost. At least one year removed from the graduation of his high school class. That's not the date he graduates but the class he would have. Silvio will be 20 next fall and 100% eligible.

Bj Cassady 4 years, 4 months ago

We cannot expect too much from our newest Hawk. If he can give us 8 minutes a game, great. He will have to learn to play defense at this high level and score a little. If he can do that great. We really need, really need Preston.

Pius Waldman 4 years, 4 months ago

"KU is still awaiting some sort of resolution in the Billy Preston situation, as the freshman McDonald's All-American has missed all 12 games while KU officials investigate a compliance issue involving his vehicle."

This may be the most unusual investigation I have ever followed. The length is difficult to understand. Also the lack of information expressed publicly is only what Self shares which is only the investigation is ongoing. Very little rumors what is being studied.

Mike Greer 4 years, 4 months ago

I'm confident Coach will figure out how and when to incorporate DeSousa and Preston into the lineup. If you recall, Aldrich played very sparsely during most of the season and then got considerable playing time come March. Preston obviously has a considerable head start and should be ready for prime time when he's cleared to play. DeSousa on the other hand, has some serious catching up to do, but I'm sure he will get his playing time.

Tony Bandle 4 years, 4 months ago

Making a few assumptions, it appears next seasons ['18/'19] will start off in no particular order for now, Garrett, Conliffe, Lawson, Lawson, Moore, Lightfoot. De Suoso, McCormack, Dotson and Grimes.

Possible additions could be any of the following; Williamson, Langford, the return of Vick, the return of Preston, the return of Dok. Needless to say, next season's team will be loaded. Anything can happen.

Just a technical question.....does Silvio now become part of the 2017 recruiting class or will he still be considered part of 2018. Is the student's class designation governed by when he graduates or when he becomes officially part of the team?

DiscGolfer Jason 4 years, 4 months ago

With all due respect TB it's Cunliffe not Conliffe. You read it and yet you keep misspelling his name.

Andy Godwin 4 years, 4 months ago

Part of the 2017 class, since he reclassified. His upside looks bright, but likely in the 2018-2019 season, when he learns Self’s ropes. Would be nice if De Sousa, Udoka, and Dedric Lawson were able played together next year. That would be one dynamite and dominant front line. It would be great for Self to start the season with a fully loaded cupboard without all of the drama of who is leaving early, who eligible from day one, etc.

And Corey Evans of noted: “What does DeSousa bring to the floor? He is a walking double-double that rebounds, finishes and runs the floor. His ball skills have rapidly improved and so has the range and consistency on his 17-foot jumper, a big man that can play alongside Udoka Azubuike but also a small ball 5-man.”

Nice company article about De Sousa as a physical presence and his predicted upside.

Ila Andersen Russell 4 years, 4 months ago

ROCK CHALK! WELCOME TO KANSAS SILVIO! Can't wait to see your first game!

Sam Burns 4 years, 4 months ago

I was looking on here for something saying that he arrived on campus today and practiced with the team, but I found out on KU Hoops that he wouldn't arrive in time to take his physical and practice on Tuesday, so his first practice will be on Wednesday instead of Tuesday (jab, jab at Matt, lol)

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