Saturday, April 14, 2018

KU signee Quentin Grimes rock solid again at Nike Hoop Summit

This year's participants at the Nike Hoop Summit in Portland. KU signees Quentin Grimes (6) and David McCormack (15) played in Friday's showcase scrimmage, while KU target Romeo Langford (11) was held out because of injury.

This year's participants at the Nike Hoop Summit in Portland. KU signees Quentin Grimes (6) and David McCormack (15) played in Friday's showcase scrimmage, while KU target Romeo Langford (11) was held out because of injury.


With KU target Romeo Langford sidelined because of a minor injury he suffered at last week's Jordan Brand Classic, KU signees Quentin Grimes and David McCormack took center stage — from the Kansas perspective, anyway — at Friday's showcase game at the Nike Hoop Summit in Portland.

Playing for the United States team, which was matched up with the top prospects from around the world, the two future Jayhawks combined to play 47 minutes in an 89-76 loss by Team USA.

Grimes, who started and kept up his impressive string of performances on this year's postseason all-star circuit, played 35 minutes and tallied 15 points, six rebounds and four assists while shooting 7-of-17 from the floor, 1-of-6 from 3-point range.

Grimes' numbers were only half of the story. The 6-foot-5 combo guard was one of the more talked about players in the game on Twitter by those in attendance. And it was his swagger, style, skill and stats that impressed them most.

“Quentin Grimes has been the best player for Team USA during their scrimmage tonight,” wrote NBA analyst Dave DuFour on his Twitter page. “Going to be fun at KU next year.”

Tweeted ESPN college basketball analyst and international scout Fran Fraschilla: “KU fans are going love Quentin Grimes & David McCormack. Grimes might be best SG since McLemore. McCormack a banger with a HIGH motor.”

McCormack's day on the floor during the Friday scrimmage was considerably less memorable — two points on 1-of-2 shooting, and one rebound in 12 minutes — but the 6-foot-10, 260-pound, four-star center, who recorded a double-double at the McDonald's All-American game last month in Atlanta, said the experience of playing with and against some of the best talent in the world while competing for his country was far more important than his statistics could ever be.

“The competition level was high,” said McCormack of his week in Portland in an interview with USA Basketball at the Portland Trailblazers' team facility. “Practicing here, first it was a blessing, but at the same time it was a great learning experience.”

With a few unsigned players in the Class of 2018 and athletes from the Classes of 2019 and 2020 on hand, the event attracted the eyes of all kinds of college and NBA evaluators and McCormack, who signed with KU last November, said that aspect of the event merely added to the fun.

“A lot of people kind of freeze up when there's a lot of eyes on you in a kind of evaluating-you type of situation,” he said. “But you just have to stay true to yourself, stay true to your game, play hard, make sure you have great team chemistry and just be all-in, be 100 percent in and invested deeply into the team.”

This weekend's Hoop Summit scrimmage marked the end of the major all-star games that include members of the Class of 2018.

Next up for that crew is summer reporting to their respective campuses. But first, of course, the Jayhawks will remain on high alert awaiting a decision from Langford, who was in Portland this week and is expected to announce his college decision between KU, Indiana and Vanderbilt on April 30.

KU currently has one open scholarship to hand out.


Andy Godwin 4 years, 5 months ago

Hope to heck Udoka returns for his Junior year (McCormack two points on 1-of-2 shooting, and one rebound in 12 minutes) and De Sousa is eligible. Will be hard to replace Svi’s marksmanship (Grimes was 1-of-4 and 1-of-6 from 3-point range, in the Jordan Brand and Nike Hoops, respectively) and Newman’s explosiveness (no recruiting services has KU in the lead for Langford’s services). Don’t put much stock in the stats from the McDonald’s dunk feast, but these latest games are more competitive (although wow “LSU signee Emmitt Williams shattered LeBron James' Jordan Brand record with 44 points on 22-of-23 shooting”). Experience frequently trumps youthful promise and KU will be extraordinarily young from a college and Big 12 game standpoint. With Vick deciding to leave a year early (not sure if Self was truly expecting his early departure), next year’s team might be one of Self’s least experienced from a guard standpoint. The undersized Charlie Moore can shoot from deep and can run the team (however, Self will be hard pressed to replace the leadership of Mason and then Graham in consecutive seasons), but the wings will likely not be as reliable as last season. Hope Garrett is working on his outside shot. The strength next year will undoubtedly be the front court lead by the Dedric/Udoka combo, if Udoka stays put.

Reggie Flenory 4 years, 5 months ago

The difference with these freshman we have coming in is they are very skilled and we still will have dok and the lawsons for leadership.

Marius Rowlanski 4 years, 5 months ago

Maybe a little more input than one stat line before judging McCormick. Just saying...

Brian Leslie 4 years, 5 months ago

Practice reports from McDonalds on McCormack were very good. That's probably as reliable an indicator as anything from this all-star series.

Tom Jones 4 years, 5 months ago

Fear not. We'll be top ten even if Dok bails.

Top three if he stays. The Lawsons already have a year under Bill. Silvio's return unscathed would be fantastic, but we'll be fine upfront unless both he and Dok are gone.

Robert Brock 4 years, 5 months ago

Devon Dotson will start at the PG-spot and he is terrific at driving for point-blank shots. His outside shot is inconsistent but he is an excellent passer and enabler. KU will still run efficient offense; the BIG question: what about defense? That concerns me.

Jack Joiner 4 years, 5 months ago

That 44 point performance was a joke, right along with all these all star games including the NBA all star game.

Edward Daub 4 years, 5 months ago

Does Nike Profit from the Hoop Summit? I Trust "No" , that Profits are Donated to Charity.

Does Nike Pay for Travel Expenses? I Trust "Yes" , These Young Men Deserve That.

A bit Ironic, that Langford will select from 2 Adidas Schools (Kansas or Indiana) or 1 Nike School (Vanderbilt). Unless, Chris Mack crosses the Ohio River!

Joe Ross 4 years, 5 months ago

Grimes is an inch shorter and about 20 pounds lighter than Wayne Selden, but I see similarities in their games. Both can shoot and take you off the bounce. Great athletic finishers that can create their own shot, and lethal in the open floor.

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