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Posts tagged with Perry Ellis

Sporting News moves Jayhawks to No. 1 spot in preseason Top 25

Kansas players Jamari Traylor, left, Devonte Graham, Wayne Selden and Perry Ellis surround Frank Mason before a pair of free throws by Mason during the second half on Friday, Dec. 5, 2014 at Allen Fieldhouse.

Kansas players Jamari Traylor, left, Devonte Graham, Wayne Selden and Perry Ellis surround Frank Mason before a pair of free throws by Mason during the second half on Friday, Dec. 5, 2014 at Allen Fieldhouse. by Nick Krug

The hype for Kansas University’s 2015-16 men’s basketball season received another early boost to accompany the just-announced January showdown versus Kentucky, at Allen Fieldhouse.

With actual games still almost six months away, The Sporting News rolled out an updated preseason Top 25 and placed the Jayhawks at No. 1.

KU, of course, hasn’t advanced past the Round of 32 in the previous two NCAA Tournaments, so the selection might come as a surprise to some.

“When the best answer to the question of ‘Why Kansas?’ is ‘Why not?’, you’ve got yourself a pretty strange college basketball season on the way,” Mike DeCourcy wrote.

Between reliable senior-to-be Perry Ellis, the addition of incoming freshman big man Cheick Diallo and a number of Jayhawks capable of making significant strides in their development, The Sporting News likes KU’s potential rotation.

Still, attempting to predict next season’s elite teams, DeCourcy said on SportingNews.com, wasn’t as easy as it was in 2014-15, with Kentucky, Wisconsin and Duke leading the pack.

“What we have now are a lot of teams that have potential, but flaws,” he said, “and they’re gonna have to overcome those flaws in order to be champions.”

Settling on Bill Self’s Jayhawks, DeCourcy added, came with some trepidation.

“There’s just not any single player that says, ‘I’m your star,’ and usually you need someone to carry you to a title,” he indicated. “Nobody at Kansas at this point has emerged as that sort of player.”

DeCourcy questioned whether Ellis possesses headliner power and pointed to Wayne Selden Jr. as someone who hasn’t proven to look comfortable in that role. Diallo, he added, projects as “a great defensive weapon,” but might not be as reliable on offense.

“One of those guys has to be a star for us to be right,” he offered, “but we like them more than some of the other contenders.”

Kansas forward Perry Ellis (34) defends against a shot from Michigan State guard/forward Branden Dawson (22) during the first half on Sunday, Nov. 30, 2014 at the HP Field House in Kissimmee, Florida. Also pictured are KU guard Frank Mason, left, and forward Cliff Alexander.

Kansas forward Perry Ellis (34) defends against a shot from Michigan State guard/forward Branden Dawson (22) during the first half on Sunday, Nov. 30, 2014 at the HP Field House in Kissimmee, Florida. Also pictured are KU guard Frank Mason, left, and forward Cliff Alexander. by Nick Krug

Ultimately, DeCourcy said The Sporting News staff believes in Self, and thinks the Jayhawks will play great defense in 2015-16.

The two teams immediately following the Jayhawks in the advance rankings have Kansas ties. Former KU guard Mark Turgeon’s Maryland Terrapins snagged the No. 2 spot and Self’s predecessor at Kansas, Roy Williams, leads No. 3 North Carolina.

Wichita State, which knocked the Jayhawks out of The Big Dance this past March and adds former KU guard Conner Frankamp to the roster this coming season, landed at No. 9.

The Big 12 earned four total spots in the rankings, with No. 7 Iowa State, No. 11 Oklahoma and No. 16 West Virginia joining KU.

None by Sporting News NCAAB

Sporting News College Hoops 2015-16 Preseason Top 10

1. Kansas

2. Maryland

3. North Carolina

4. Kentucky

5. Duke

6. Virginia

7. Iowa State

8. Arizona

9. Wichita State

10. Gonzaga

See the complete Top 25 at SportingNews.com.

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10 years of Big 12 supremacy: 2014

KUsports.com graphic by Janella Williams

KUsports.com graphic by Janella Williams

From the time of Big 12 divisions, through realignment and the subtraction/addition of teams and a new 10-team format, one thing has remained constant in the conference for the past decade: Kansas University's men's basketball team has always finished in first place.

All week long, we've been looking back at KU's 10 consecutive Big 12 championships by highlighting the top players and moments of each conference schedule, from 2005 to today.

2014

Big 12 record: 14-4

Top 5 scorers

(Stats through March 7)

Andrew Wiggins, 16.0 points, 5.8 rebounds

Kansas guard Andrew Wiggins gets up for a dunk over Kansas State guard Marcus Foster during the second half on Saturday, Jan. 11, 2013 at Allen Fieldhouse.

Kansas guard Andrew Wiggins gets up for a dunk over Kansas State guard Marcus Foster during the second half on Saturday, Jan. 11, 2013 at Allen Fieldhouse. by Nick Krug

Perry Ellis, 13.2 points, 6.4 rebounds

Kansas forward Perry Ellis elevates to the bucket between Oklahoma defenders D.J. Bennett (31) and Tyler Neal (15) during the first half on Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2013 at Lloyd Noble Center in Norman, Oklahoma.

Kansas forward Perry Ellis elevates to the bucket between Oklahoma defenders D.J. Bennett (31) and Tyler Neal (15) during the first half on Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2013 at Lloyd Noble Center in Norman, Oklahoma. by Nick Krug

Joel Embiid, 11.2 points, 8.1 rebounds, 2.6 blocks

Kansas center Joel Embiid delivers a thunderous dunk before Texas guard Javan Felix during the first half on Saturday, Feb. 22, 2014 at Allen Fieldhouse.

Kansas center Joel Embiid delivers a thunderous dunk before Texas guard Javan Felix during the first half on Saturday, Feb. 22, 2014 at Allen Fieldhouse. by Nick Krug

Wayne Selden, 10.2 points, 2.7 rebounds, 2.6 assists

Kansas guard Wayne Selden raises up the fieldhouse during a timeout after hitting a three against West Virginia during the second half on Saturday, Feb. 8, 2014 at Allen Fieldhouse.

Kansas guard Wayne Selden raises up the fieldhouse during a timeout after hitting a three against West Virginia during the second half on Saturday, Feb. 8, 2014 at Allen Fieldhouse. by Nick Krug

Naadir Tharpe, 9.2 points, 5.1 assists

Kansas guard Naadir Tharpe puts up a shot over Oklahoma guard Jordan Woodard during the second half on Monday, Feb. 24, 2014 at Allen Fieldhouse.

Kansas guard Naadir Tharpe puts up a shot over Oklahoma guard Jordan Woodard during the second half on Monday, Feb. 24, 2014 at Allen Fieldhouse. by Nick Krug

3 memorable moments

No. 1 — Decade of dominance: Kansas earns share of 10th straight Big 12 title

Kansas head coach Bill Self raises up two palms in light of the the Jayhawks' tenth-straight conference title following their 83-75 win over Oklahoma on Monday, Feb. 24, 2014 at Allen Fieldhouse.

Kansas head coach Bill Self raises up two palms in light of the the Jayhawks' tenth-straight conference title following their 83-75 win over Oklahoma on Monday, Feb. 24, 2014 at Allen Fieldhouse. by Nick Krug

  • Naadir Tharpe (19 points) hit 6 of 7 shots and scored 12 of the Jayhawks' final 18 points down the stretch to defeat Oklahoma, 83-75, at Allen Fieldhouse, where KU clinched a share of its 10th straight Big 12 championship.

“Naadir closed the game the way point guards are supposed to close. The last 10 minutes is as good as Naadir has played since he’s been at KU. All teams that have a chance at having a great season have guys that can close, when you don’t run offense and put the ball in his hands. It’s what great teams have.”

— Bill Self

No. 2 — New territory: Andrew Wiggins' first game-winner lifts Jayhawks

  • Andrew Wiggins scored a game-high 19 points, his last two coming when he picked up a loose ball in the paint and put it in the basket with 1.7 seconds remaining in a 64-63 Kansas victory at Texas Tech.

“It was slippery, like it slipped on the way up. I just had to guide it in… It bounced high. I was worried about it, but it went in."

— Andrew Wiggins, on game-winner

No. 3 — Family guy: Tharpe excels with mother, brothers watching KU's home victory

  • Frank Mason foiled a would-be buzzer-beater from Le'Bryan Nash to finish off an 80-78 Kansas home victory over Oklahoma State in which Naadir Tharpe scored 21 points and dished six assists.

“It was accomplishment definitely more than relief. They’ve been talking about Oklahoma State and Kansas for a while. Since the beginning of the year, that’s all we’ve been hearing. It’s all we’ve been hearing even before conference play started, Oklahoma State, Oklahoma State. It’s more an accomplishment we went out there and played our game more than anything.”

— Naadir Tharpe

2014 BIG 12 STANDINGS

Kansas, 14-4

Oklahoma, 12-6

Texas, 11-7

Iowa State, 11-7

Kansas State, 10-8

Baylor, 9-9

West Virginia, 9-9

Oklahoma State, 8-10

Texas Tech, 6-12

TCU, 0-18

10 years of Big 12 supremacy

Monday: 2005 and 2006

Tuesday: 2007 and 2008

Wednesday: 2009 and 2010

Thursday: 2011 and 2012

Friday: 2013 and 2014

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Embiid’s stock rising

Whether Kansas is on the court, playing on national television, or has the day off, it seems the national media always has Bill Self’s Jayhawks on its radar.

Before checking out some big-picture takes on some of the Jayhawks (No. 18, 10-4), here are a few in-game and post-game tweets in regards to KU’s 90-83 road win at Oklahoma Wednesday night:

  • During the game, ESPN analyst Fran Fraschilla, whose son James is a walk-on at Oklahoma, credited KU coach Bill Self for knowing how to use a technical foul to his advantage:

  • Sports Illustrated/CBS college basketball scribe Seth Davis, who watched Kansas in person at the Battle 4 Atlantis, took a moment to give the Jayhawks credit for their road win:

  • ESPN’s favorite yelling former coach, Dick Vitale, might have been speechless for a moment, upon realizing how much offensive success Kansas had at Oklahoma:

  • Meanwhile, ESPN’s Jay Williams doesn’t view Kansas as the best, or even the second-best, team in the Big 12 right now:


Wiggins, Embiid project as top NBA picks

Kansas newcomers Andrew Wiggins, left, and Joel Embiid peek outside to pump up the crowd before the fieldhouse doors opened for Late Night in the Phog, Friday, Oct. 4, 2013.

Kansas newcomers Andrew Wiggins, left, and Joel Embiid peek outside to pump up the crowd before the fieldhouse doors opened for Late Night in the Phog, Friday, Oct. 4, 2013. by Nick Krug

Every person who has paid any attention to Kansas this season knows that Self’s hyped freshman class has multiple potential one-and-done players. And few expect forward Andrew Wiggins and center Joel Embiid to be around when the 2014-15 season starts.

Thanks to espn.com, you can start to toy around with what NBA franchise Wiggins and Embiid will call home following the 2014 Draft, in June. Head over to the 2014 Lottery Mock Draft and give it a whirl.

The exact order of the top 14 slots in the draft, aka the lottery picks, won’t be determined until the season ends and the lottery is held. But this fun little mock draft machine spits out as many options as one could dream up every time the “play lottery” button is pushed. Using a list of 14 NBA prospects, it projects where each player will go, depending on how the teams are sorted out.

Out of curiosity, I played it three times. Each one provided a scenario in which Wiggins and Embiid were off the board by the third pick:

  • No. 1, Milwaukee Bucks: Jabari Parker, Duke; No. 2, Denver Nuggets: Andrew Wiggins, Kansas; No. 3, Orlando Magic: Joel Embiid, Kansas.

  • No. 1, Orlando: Wiggins; No. 2, Cleveland Cavaliers: Embiid; No. 3, Philadelphia 76ers: Parker.

  • No. 1, Milwaukee: Parker; No. 2, Orlando: Wiggins; No. 3, New Orleans Pelicans: Embiid.

You get the idea. The mock draft lottery feature could spit out any number of combinations, and most of them have Wiggins and Embiid in the top three or four.

Interestingly enough, the man behind the draft machine, ESPN’s Chad Ford, expects different outcomes to these scenarios by the time the real draft rolls around this June:


Over at ESPN’s Grantland, NBA aficionados Bill Simmons and Jalen Rose agree. Simmons retweeted Ford and followed with this:


You can watch Simmons and Rose gush about Embiid beginning at the 2:20 mark of the below clip, from Grantland’s YouTube channel.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k7CCRbXwwkc&t=2m19s


Embiid gaining notoriety

Kansas center Joel Embiid comes down from a dunk against Oklahoma during the first half on Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2013 at Lloyd Noble Center in Norman, Oklahoma.

Kansas center Joel Embiid comes down from a dunk against Oklahoma during the first half on Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2013 at Lloyd Noble Center in Norman, Oklahoma. by Nick Krug

In a piece by Ryan Fagan, of The Sporting News, it is pointed out that Wiggins, Duke’s Jabari Parker, Kentucky’s Julius Randle and Arizona’s Aaron Gordon entered this season with the most hype.

But for this piece, Fagan focuses on four other outstanding freshmen: Tyler Ennis, Syracuse; Jordan Mickey, LSU; Eric Mika, BYU; and Embiid.

Again, Embiid’s rising NBA draft stock is noted, and Fagan provides a link to the DraftExpress.com YouTube channel, which has this below video on Embiid. The stats cited are only from the first 10 games of the season, but I’m certain this is as thorough a video as you could hope for (IT’S 16 MINUTES LONG!) in terms of showing off all the skills and intangibles Embiid possesses that has NBA personnel drooling.

(Also, if you’ve ever wanted to watch multiple clips of Embiid boxing out, while listening to instrumental-only Lupe Fiasco, well, I just made your day.)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cn-dtrmh0nM


Wiggins ‘not overwhelming’

Kansas guard Andrew Wiggins heads out-of-bounds past the Sooners' bench after losing control of his dribble late in the game on Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2013 at Lloyd Noble Center in Norman, Oklahoma.

Kansas guard Andrew Wiggins heads out-of-bounds past the Sooners' bench after losing control of his dribble late in the game on Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2013 at Lloyd Noble Center in Norman, Oklahoma. by Nick Krug

In an effort to catch up casual college basketball fans with everything that went on during the non-conference season, which coincides with college football season, CBSSPorts.com’s Gary Parrish offered 10 things those who weren’t paying attention needed to know.

No. 2 on his list: “Andrew Wiggins has been really good but not overwhelming.”

Parrish posted this before Wiggins went 2-for-9 from the floor at Oklahoma on Wednesday. Still, he makes a valid point that it probably isn’t fair to ask “What’s wrong with Wiggins?” or call the freshman standout’s season “disappointing."


Ellis breaking out/KU ‘wishy-washy’

Over at bleacherreport.com, Jason King identified Perry Ellis as one of college basketball’s breakout stars this season. Eliis continued that trend with a double-double at Oklahoma Wednesday night.

Down near the bottom of the King’s Court piece, in the rapidfire section, the national writer also picked Kansas as his current “wishy-washy” team.

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