Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Jayhawks excited to add grad transfer Isaiah Moss’ veteran presence to roster

KU grad transfer Isaiah Moss, second from left, runs sprints with his teammates during boot camp in the KU practice gym earlier this week.

KU grad transfer Isaiah Moss, second from left, runs sprints with his teammates during boot camp in the KU practice gym earlier this week.


Iowa graduate transfer Isaiah Moss has been on KU’s campus for about a month but already has shown he fits in well.

The reason?

“He’s a veteran,” sophomore point guard Devon Dotson recently told the Journal-World. “He knows what it takes out there and in practice. He knows what it takes to succeed at the highest level.”

Dotson has seen that from Moss for years. Back when the KU point guard was in high school, his older brother, Dalen, played AAU ball with Moss and the Dotson family has been close with Moss ever since.

“It’s been cool catching up with him and just talking about memories my brother and him had together,” Dotson said. “I wasn’t playing with them, so, yeah, I was forced to go, but I wanted to watch. I wanted to be around basketball whenever I could. And it’s fun having him around.”

Few Jayhawks know that better than senior forward Mitch Lightfoot, who is Moss’ roommate and has had opportunities beyond the practice gym and the weight room to get to know him.

“We hang out a lot,” Lightfoot said. “And he’s a super nice, down-to-earth dude and he just seems super locked in. He’s going to help us a lot this year.”

Moss arrived on campus a little later than most of his teammates because of his summer internship with the nonprofit group Rainbow PUSH Coalition in his hometown of Chicago. While there, Moss worked out on his own in gyms around the city and spent a good chunk of his days running youth basketball camps.

Like Dotson, Lightfoot said Moss’ maturity already has shown up during the former Iowa guard’s first few weeks with the team.

“We were talking about it the other day,” Lightfoot said. “And it’s going to be easier for him just because he’s been around college systems before. When you’re a freshman, it’s kind of hard to pick up on those things that fast. He picked up (KU’s offense known as) ‘2 game’ in like 10 minutes. It took me about six months. He’s done a good job of picking things up quickly.”

It’s not just the fact that he’s a quick learner or nice guy that has Lightfoot, Dotson and the rest of the Jayhawks excited to have Moss on the roster. They genuinely believe that the former Iowa standout is going to add to KU’s already dangerous arsenal.

KU coach Bill Self has said that he expects Moss to be one of the better 3-point shooters in the Big 12 Conference. And Moss’ track record as a career 39% shooter from behind the arc (42% last season) lends support to that claim.

“He can definitely play,” Lightfoot said. “That’s why coach recruited him. He knows he can play here, he knows he’ll help make us a better team and he’ll definitely help a lot.”

One of just two returning seniors on the roster, Lightfoot said having another veteran to help keep the Jayhawks accountable in every way would do wonders for KU’s preparation and goals for the 2019-20 season.

“Just having some more senior leadership, that’s always good,” Lightfoot said. “He makes his teammates better and I think he’s really going to surprise some people this year. He’s going to surpass expectations.”


3 years, 2 months ago

6th/7th man? scoring off the bench? well take it. hopefully he contributes meaningfully. get after it boys! rcjh

Dirk Medema 3 years, 2 months ago

“Iowa standout” is a stretch, yes?

Wasn’t he 6th man there? Wasn’t that part of the incentive of coming here? The chance to both step up from a program standpoint as well as a chance to start?

I’m expecting him to start at the 3 (Devon, Ochai, Isaiah, SdS, Dok). Expecting the maturity and experience not to mention an established collegiate 3-ball and urgency of one last go round being enough to push him out front. That being said it’s fun to see the depth and variety of pieces that Coach has available this year.

Eliott Reeder 3 years, 2 months ago

2018-19 Honors – Shared the team’s Most Improved Player Award with classmate Ryan Kriener. 2018-19 – Started all 35 games… ranked fifth on the team in scoring (9.2), second in steals (32), and fourth in assists (62)… netted double figures 15 times, including scoring 15 points or more eight times… led team in steals nine times and assists five times… made four 3-pointers or more five times… ranked fourth in the Big Ten in 3-point field goal percentage (.421, 48-of-114)… his 42.1 percentage from 3-point range ranks sixth best by an Iowa junior in school history… recorded first career double-double (12 points, 10 rebounds) and added five assists in home win over Nebraska… posted second career double-double (12 points, 10 rebounds) against Maryland… scored 18 first-half points en route to 20 points with four 3-pointers made in win over Iowa State… drained 5-of-6 three-pointers, netting a then season-best 21 points, while tying a career-high six assists with zero turnovers versus Illinois… netted a season-best 23 points on a career-best six 3-point field goals made at Minnesota… tallied 16 points against #6 Tennessee in the second round of the NCAA Tournament… letterwinner.

Eliott Reeder 3 years, 2 months ago

Looks pretty dang solid to me, but I guess it depends on how strictly you define ‘standout’.

Dirk Medema 3 years, 2 months ago

Thanks for the info. I'd agree, though solid is a step back from stand-out IMO.

Allan Olson 3 years, 2 months ago

His overall contributions for Iowa last season were far more impressive that our now departed, All-American starter. Moss just needs to repeat those numbers for KU, and he will be a "stand-out". Word says he play good defense as well.

Steve Quatrocky 3 years, 2 months ago

I see Moss as this year's kharmic payback to last year's weird departure of Lagerald Vick, same role, but sounds like a much more mature head game and work ethic which is an upgrade. If he has an average year, he replaces Vick, if he struggles he's last years Q, if he excels he's what we expected Q would be and at least as good as Q would be as a sophomore.

All of our struggles last year, Doke injured, Sylvio ineligible, Vicks departure, all being kharmically paid back in spades for this season with incredible depth and talent. Just think, Devon never really had bigs to pass to or control the lane last year, he's gonna be a lottery pick! Would love to see the 2020 Championship Banner hanging at AFH! ROCK CHALK!

Tony Bandle 3 years, 2 months ago

Am I the only one hearing the faint tick-tock of an NCAA Time Bomb winding down in the background? I totally hope I am wrong and all of you get to ridicule me all season but ....I'm what's his name!!!!!!!

Dirk Medema 3 years, 2 months ago

Tony - I think they would love to penalize us for Alexander and whatshisname that they never got to punish. They tried taking it out on Silvio but fortunately that got at least partly corrected. Fortunately the courts realized the relative credibility and flipped them so I doubt they have anything to run with. I’m not worried but then I tend towards the eternal optimist end of the spectrum.

Steve Quatrocky 3 years, 2 months ago

I dont think so, and now that we have restocked with local kids versus one and dones, we should be OK, no game or championship forfeits, maybe a scholarship loss as a slap on the wrist compared to the programs where coaches have been fired, caught on wiretaps, etc.

The Adidas trial is over, grand jury ruled they wont release evidence to NCAA, so they got what they got and what they have is on a player who never played a game, who was proactively held out as soon as we smelled something improper with the car, and 2500 to Silvio's guardian, not his real parent, that was supposedly to pay "for online academic work" no less. His time has already been done but I could see a scholly loss as the program's token punishment when the dust settles. Have to remember, the government's position that the school's were defrauded, not complicit, really makes a big difference when they havent charged anyone at a particular university, they actually have to protect any testimony referencing those who arent charged.

Now the Nike trial is a different story, but it involves media darlings, so we will see if it gets the same kind of coverage or if it somehow fades away.

Stuart Corder 3 years, 2 months ago

...we are going to be really, REALLY good this year, even by KU standards...

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