Will Andrew Wiggins average over/under 18 points next season?


Huntington Prep basketball player Andrew Wiggins smiles along side his mother Marita Payne-Wiggins, right, as he announces his commitment to Kansas University during a ceremony on Tuesday, May 14, 2013, at St. Joseph High School in Huntington W.Va. The Canadian star, a top prospect, averaged 23.4 points and 11.2 rebounds per game this season for West Virginia's Huntington Prep.

Huntington Prep basketball player Andrew Wiggins smiles along side his mother Marita Payne-Wiggins, right, as he announces his commitment to Kansas University during a ceremony on Tuesday, May 14, 2013, at St. Joseph High School in Huntington W.Va. The Canadian star, a top prospect, averaged 23.4 points and 11.2 rebounds per game this season for West Virginia's Huntington Prep.

I guess Andrew Wiggins is kind of a big deal.

Not only has he moved the Kansas men's basketball team from 30-to-1 odds to win the national championship to 7.5-to-1, but the site Bovada also had individual odds on whether Wiggins would score over or under 18 points per game next season. No other college player was given similar attention on the site.

This actually brings up a good question: Will Wiggins average more or less than 18 points per game for KU next season?

Let's examine:

3 reasons Wiggins could average 18 points per game

• Opportunity: KU doesn't return much in the way of proven scorers. It'd even be different if a guy like Jeff Withey (13.7 points per game last year) was coming back.

Really, though, who is a guarantee to score more than 10 points per game next year? I would think most KU fans would say a healthy Perry Ellis should, but other than that, what guarantees are there? Wayne Selden is athletic, but will he be an immediate scorer? Conner Frankamp is a great shooter, but how many minutes will he get right away? Tarik Black is a nice addition, but his stats indicate he's more of a complimentary scorer rather than a go-to one.

If Wiggins is the "alpha dog" that KU coach Bill Self says he is, then it's definitely possible he'll be shooting a high percentage of the Jayhawks' shots on a team that doesn't return any starters from a year ago.

• Pace: With athletic players like Wiggins and Selden — and no lumbering centers to slow down the offense — KU should be looking to push the pace in 2013-14. And obviously, more possessions would give Wiggins extra shots to get to the magic 18 point-per-game number.

McDonald's East All-American's Andrew Wiggins (22) and Julius Randle (30) battle for a rebound during the second half of the McDonald's All-American Boys basketball game in Chicago on April 3, 2013.

McDonald's East All-American's Andrew Wiggins (22) and Julius Randle (30) battle for a rebound during the second half of the McDonald's All-American Boys basketball game in Chicago on April 3, 2013.

Self's green light: When Self has had talented offensive players in the past, he's practically begged them to shoot more ... even if they didn't.

KU guard Sherron Collins said that, in practice, Brandon Rush would have to run on the treadmill if he passed up a jumpshot.

This past season, KU guard Ben McLemore often talked about how Self wanted him to be more aggressive, including this quote from a story in late January:

“Coach Self always stresses to me that he needs me to be more aggressive, and I need to create more opportunities offensively to get myself open one pass away. I need to get myself open. I need to do a better job of that. I didn’t plug myself in the first half. I wasn’t aggressive like coach wants me to be. Coach told me to go out second half and be more aggressive and plug myself in.”

Wiggins likely won't hear any grumblings from Self if he decides to be an ultra-assertive player on the offensive end.

3 reasons Wiggins won't average 18 points per game

Schedule: Let's face it: It's much easier to put up points against patsies.

It'll be much tougher for KU players to rack up the points in the non-conference season this year, as the Jayhawks' slate is loaded with contests against Duke, Florida, New Mexico, Georgetown and San Diego State — and that's not even counting a three-game trip to the Bahamas in the Battle 4 Atlantis. Even some of the "easier" games aren't that easy, as Iona (101) and Towson (168) finished in the top half of KenPom's rankings a year ago.

If Wiggins gets to 18 points per game next season, he'll have earned it against what is sure to be a top-five schedule.

18's a high number: Only 48 players averaged 18 points or more per game last season, and just four of those players were on teams that finished the year in the AP top 25 (Creighton's Doug McDermott, Ohio State's Deshaun Thomas, Louisville's Russ Smith and Michigan's Trey Burke). Notice also that none of those players were freshmen.

If you're wondering about Self's 10-year history at KU ... only two players have topped the 18-point-per-game barrier.

Top PPG players under Self

Top PPG players under Self by Jesse Newell

The top freshman scorer under Self? That would be McLemore, who averaged 15.9 PPG last season.

History of No. 1 prospects: To see how other top-ranked prospects had fared in their first year of college, I looked up the No. 1 recruits over the last eight seasons in the RSCI rankings (which compiles many recruiting rankings to make a comprehensive list). I then looked at how many points per game each player scored in his freshman season.

Only one — USC's O.J. Mayo — averaged more than 18 points per game.

RSCI No. 1s

RSCI No. 1s by Jesse Newell

Interesting, only two players on that list averaged more than 16 points per game, which shows how difficult it has been in the past for a top recruit to step in and produce big point numbers right away at a top program.

Final verdict

Your answer to this question probably depends on your view of Wiggins.

Is he the best high-school basketball player since LeBron James, as a few analysts have claimed? If he's that kind of talent, he should get 18 points per game fairly easily.

If, talent-wise, he's around what the other No. 1 recruits have been, then it's a much tougher question to answer. Most No. 1 guys don't step immediately into blueblood programs and average 18 points per game, but then again, most No. 1 guys aren't entering a team with no returning starters and a coach that has pleaded with his elite players to shoot more in the past.

For me, I'll say Wiggins finishes just under 18 points per game. I think he'll definitely be above McLemore's 15.9 last year, but getting 18-plus against the schedule KU has next year will be a difficult task.

Vegas usually isn't off by much, and I don't think it is here, either. I'll say Wiggins ends somewhere around Marcus Morris' mark of 17.2 PPG in 2010-11.

But I'm definitely not confident enough to put my money where my mouth is.

What do you think: over or under 18 points per game for Wiggins next season? Be sure to vote in our online poll.

More from Jesse Newell

  • Here's what type of player KU is getting in Tarik Black
  • Seen it? The nation's reaction to top recruit Andrew Wiggins choosing Kansas
  • Here's what type of player KU is getting in Hunter Mickelson
  • Ranking the top 10 dunks of 2012-13
  • How a fingertip, a late rotation and a great player contributed to Michigan's frantic comeback over KU
  • Comments

    Bobby Burch 9 years, 6 months ago

    Nice insight, Jesse. 17.2 PPG sounds about right to me. Sort of also depends on how Self modifies the playbook for Wiggins, considering HCBS previously said he'll plug in Wiggins similar to McLemore. I'm thinking this will definitely be more of a fast break team than in years past, which will be great for our 3-point shooters, too. Can't wait for next season! Rock Chalk.

    diegohawk 9 years, 6 months ago


    Wiggins will most likely lead the team in scoring. I'm betting 16.7 ppg. Wayne 13.4 ppg Perry will average 12.8 ppg. Naadir will average 10.1. Greene 9.6.

    Those are my top 5 scorers.

    IMO Greene can flat fill it up. Due to his handle, I could see Bill with the above lineup minus Naa and add in either Jo Jo or Black for a few possessions.

    Another combo: Wayne, Wiggins and Greene can all handle the ball in the open court and so can Perry. Black can run and will give us some extra possessions with his rebounding.

    Wayne the 1, Frankamp the 2, Wiggins the 3 with Greene playing the 4 and Perry the 5 would be awesome to watch on occasion as well. Greene can rebound. Wiggins can rebound. Wayne can rebound. Perry can rebound. What a luxury to have tall and athletic guards who can stroke it, handle the ball and crash the boards.

    There are so many guys who can play multiple spots on this roster. Bill has to be salivating at the possibilities.

    I'm not sleepin' on Frank Mason either. As a matter of fact I like all our guys and am anxious to see who steps it up this year.

    hawk316 9 years, 6 months ago

    Jesse, good stuff. With all the talk about Wiggins and this amazing recruiting class (I love this class!), the key to next year's team may very well be Naadir Tharpe. If Tharpe steps up as a strong leader with a steady, calming influence on and off the court, this team could really be something special. Leadership will be extremely important next season because we'll be so young, and Tharpe is one of the few candidates available to fill this role.

    Did I mention that I love this recruiting class?!?!?

    Jeff Kilgore 9 years, 6 months ago

    Definitely under 18.

    One thing not mentioned is the lack of competition in the Big12, and because of this, we'll be way, way ahead in many of our games, and so AW will likely be subbed out, Self not really a run up the score on them type of coach.

    I'm not buying "raw," or "young," or "inexperienced" at all. These kids are ballplayers, and while they haven't played the college game, they're all big time players in big time games. We will be big, fast, athletic, deep, and young, but who cares? Michigan didn't last year. The best thing about all of these things? Bill Self is coaching them. That puts this crew over the top. I mean, how is anyone going to guard this team, and who can't this team guard? We're not unbeatable, but losses will be rare.

    Jim Erickson 9 years, 6 months ago

    Tharpe: 8 PPG with 4.5 Assists

    Seldon: 10 PPG

    Wiggins: 22 PPG... I'M DRINKING THE PUNCH!

    Ellis: 17 PPG with 8 REB

    Embiid: 9 PPG with 8 REB

    Frankamp, Greene, Black, Traylor, White: 14 PPG

    Greg Lux 9 years, 6 months ago

    ditto on the wait. I like the chart but we are talking about a player much more skilled then most of that group. I see him making a statement, and I see his teammates helping him do so nightly. 25 is my average. But no mater how much he scores its going to be fun fun fun to watch. We better check the db meter because the roof is going to shake next year.

    Rock Chalk

    702Hawk 9 years, 6 months ago

    For as much attention as Wiggins has gotten he seems like we will be double teamed most of the time. I think he has a better chance of getting two Triple Doubles than averaging above 18 ppg.

    FarSideHawk 9 years, 6 months ago

    I concur Jesse. I think he will be around that number. One thing that sticks out most about Wiggins versus other star freshmen that we've had (McLemore, Selby, Xavier), is that all three of them joined a very experienced team with clear team leaders and stars (Xavier with Sherron/Cole; Selby with Morri; McLemore with the 4 seniors). Considering the fact that these kids were, for the most part, team-first and humble players, they deferred a lot to the upper-classmen.

    Wiggins should be able to play with much more freedom which should help his numbers.

    Jim Tebow 9 years, 6 months ago

    Selby was team-first? That's news to me

    SaltLakeHawk 9 years, 6 months ago

    Only a selfish person would get injured and have a bad year! He put the team last!

    Jim Erickson 9 years, 6 months ago

    Selby would have been a phenomenal player had he stayed but were foolish to think he didn't have 900 people in his ear to leave. Just because a player doesn't stay, or produce great numbers, doesn't mean he is a bad guy... I remember when Alex Gordon was "selfish" and that nonsense.

    Ben Kane 9 years, 6 months ago

    If this was a vegas bet and i had some odds, i would pick him to average over 20. first of all he can. secondly, Self understands that he must showcase a man who has been called the best since lebron or he will ruin his ability to compete on oads.

    KGphoto 9 years, 6 months ago

    I think every Blue Blood coach not named Cal has very similar ability to compete on OADs regardless if one bombs. Selby bombed, right after Henry basically bombed, yet here Bill is landing Wiggins.

    The timing of team needs, the type of kid, the type of parents, region he grew up in, etc. have more to do with it than whether a kid thinks the coach can showcase him. (Again that stands for every Blue Blood coach not named Cal.) Bill will never win a battle with Cal over who can showcase the recruit the best. Unless of course he finds himself with no returning leaders, 7 freshman and a gigantic hole to be filled at the "leading scorer" position. And it doesn’t hurt that Cal’s cup was already overflowing, so no room there.

    I think Bill’s rise by unanimous vote, to elite, through achievements alone will keep him competitive with all other fair-playing coaches.

    otaKU 9 years, 6 months ago

    Xavier Henry did not bomb. Can we all just move on with that already.

    texashawk10 9 years, 6 months ago

    Why does everyone keep believing Xavier bombed his only year here? He averaged 13 and 4 and led the team in steals that season while shooting 42% from 3. Can someone please explain how that is a bombed season when it is very comparable to other players that Jesse listed? Xavier catches way too much crap for what happened that season when it was his brother and dad that were the problems during the season and Sherron and Tyshawn missing everything they shot against UNI. Xavier came to KU as a consensus top 10 recruit that was expected to be a OAD and was good enough to be a lottery pick. Xavier performed up to expectations at KU and the issues with the team cannot be placed upon his shoulders even though many people do just that.

    Kevin Huffman 9 years, 6 months ago

    I think his lack of doing ANYTHING in the NBA has stained his past at Kansas.

    KGphoto 9 years, 6 months ago

    He was supposed to be this NBA-ready player. A guy who had an NBA body and could play in the post, drive the lane and still shoot a three. He ended up being a three point shooter. It was just a disappointment. I said he “sort of” bombed. 13/game is nice, but it’s not the kind of OAD number that would deem him a success in my mind. Not bagging on him. Just my opinion.

    Ben Kane 9 years, 6 months ago

    i'm not saying it's the end of the world if it happens. I'm just saying that I bet Self will feel extra pressure (even if just on his own) to ensure that he showcases Wiggins as much as possible. When you have the best recruit in the last decade, regardless of the reasons that you have him, you must take advantage of that. I expect we will see a much larger PR campaign from the university than they did for BMac but on the same lines as that.

    Jesse Johnson 9 years, 6 months ago

    My recollection of Xavier: He came in playing great. Scored over 30 points in only his 1st or 2nd game. Great shooter. Then, sometime around when conference play started, he went into a slump. It got so bad that I cringed every time he shot it. The slump lasted the rest of the season, through and including the UNI game where he missed some really big shots that we needed (like everybody else). His overall season averages were still pretty good because of how well he played non-conf. That is why everyone has a bad taste in our mouths regarding Xavier. He still got drafted in the lottery mainly because of his size, but he has struggled to do anything in the NBA.

    texashawk10 9 years, 6 months ago

    Xavier shot 50% in the UNI game and going back and looking at Xavier's scoring totals at the end of that season, he only had 2 bad shooting nights over the last month of the season and had multiple 20+ point games.

    SaltLakeHawk 9 years, 6 months ago

    Don't you dare bring facts into this argument!

    63Jayhawk 9 years, 6 months ago

    After attending 3 schools in 4 years, what are the odds that Wiggins ends up in the same position as Mclemore and Traylor.......not eligible to play next year?

    d_prowess 9 years, 6 months ago

    I think he will definitely play. There is always a layer of politics involved in these things and there is zero chance that the NCAA denies a player with this much NBA hype and overall national attention from playing. If they did, the NCAA would get killed by all sides.

    Dirk Medema 9 years, 6 months ago

    There was an article about how he initially went to a "prep school" run by some shady AAU coach, or was that another Canadian prep. The article talked about how he learned from the experience and got his stuff in order, which is why he reclassified (back) to this year.

    Rob Keeney 9 years, 6 months ago

    I'm guessing he'll get 8-10 a game from the FT line. That means he'll only need 4-5 FGs to hit 18. That doesn't seem out of the realm of possibility at all.

    Kurt Eskilson 9 years, 6 months ago

    Great post! I really enjoyed the detailed research.

    Andrew Horigan 9 years, 6 months ago

    I think his ppg depends on what Selden does. Before we landed Wiggins we all would have been expecting good number from Selden. Not 18ppg but definitely around 12-14ppg. If both players get hot and feed off each other we could be looking at something similar to 2008, where we have two players averaging around 14-16ppg. Then add Naadir putting up around ten (he'll have to chill out on shooting so many 3's), add Ellis around 12 or so and I'm expecting our bench to be incredible, look at all the talent. This team has the ability to put up serious numbers. Especially if Wiggins is going off on a 30 point burst. Man I am excited! We have SO MANY weapons. I'm not expecting the freshman to just come in making tons of shots, but come conference time...

    KGphoto 9 years, 6 months ago

    Brannen Greene could probably get 10-12+/game too. Embiid... Frankamp... Lucas... who knows how it’s going to shake out, but I can’t wait!!

    SaltLakeHawk 9 years, 6 months ago

    Why's everyone sleepin' on AW3? I think he's a better player than Greene, and with more experience.

    Greene redshirts this year.

    diegohawk 9 years, 6 months ago


    Greene won't shirt. Kid actually can dribble in addition to shoot. He's an inch taller than AW3, has just as pretty a stroke and can actually handle the ball. Kids also super intelligent so coach is gonna love him. He'll work hard and get about 10 - 17 mpg this season. AW3 has a chance to average around the same. I don't see either shirting but I think it would be AW3 before Greene. Neither are tremendous defenders. Both have similar body types. Both have limited athleticism. Both can stroke it. I see Greene's ball handing as the difference.

    Andrew Horigan 9 years, 6 months ago

    I think if anything I think AW3 should redshirt. There is too much talent, and although he has some experience, it's so limited that I think we'll need him later down the line, rather than in the upcoming season.

    CrimsonPhoenix 9 years, 6 months ago

    Kevin Durant averaged 25.8 points per game his freshman year, he's just a hack... don't see why Wiggins can't put up over 18 per game. :)

    Kevin Huffman 9 years, 6 months ago

    "he's just a hack."? I hope that's in jest!!!

    Dirk Medema 9 years, 6 months ago


    Some may see it as semantics, but Jesse's word choice. "the other No. 1 recruits" refers to just one player each year, and not necessarily the highest scoring top (generally speaking, not specifically #1 in some particular recruiting ranking) recruit. In addition to Kevin, Carmelo also scored 22 ppg.

    20 seems very realistic to me.

    JayHawkFanToo 9 years, 6 months ago

    Michael Beasley averaged 26.2 ppg and 12.4 rpg,

    Alec White 9 years, 6 months ago

    Damn, I forgot how dominant he was in college. Him and Durant in back-to-back years was ridiculous.

    JayHawkFanToo 9 years, 6 months ago

    Upper talented player but a real screw up in real life. what a waste of talent he has turned out to be.

    Greg Lux 9 years, 6 months ago

    Beasley just went to the wrong school. He is now a well traveled NBA player who has never reached his Potential. AW will not be that type of player, because he is not the only talent on the team and he has a coach who will help him to continue to mature defensively.

    Rock Chalk

    Tony Bandle 9 years, 6 months ago

    Great job, as always, Jesse. allow me to throw in my two Abes.

    1] I think the schedule will actually help his scoring, because there will be many more close games where he'll play virtually the whole game as opposed to some walkovers that see the coaches sons by the middle of the second half.

    2] He will score over 18 points a game because he CAN!! Outside shot, slashing to the basket, fast break opps..he can do it all whereby BenMac kind of contained his game to the outside and stil averaged almost 16.

    3] As mentioned earlier, no one to defer to..Perry?, Jamari? Naadir?...don't think so and even the most experienced guy on the team, Tarik, is also a first year Jayhawk.

    4] HCBS planning for the future. This season may be one of the most important seasons in the next ten years, because if Andrew does become the OAD Jewel of the KAW, every present and future OAD will know about it and that will add a BIG PLUS for KU.

    5] And finally, Kansas will present nightmare match-ups all over the court [Perry Jo Jo, Wayne] so no team will truly be able to double up on Andrew. In fact, I predict just the opposite, in that teams will start letting Andrew get his points and focus on stopping everyone else.

    It should be really, really fun this next season!!!

    KGphoto 9 years, 6 months ago

    That’s almost exactly what happened with Durant, and it worked. At least it worked for KU. We let him pretty much go. He’d put up 35 and lose.

    I’d rather Wiggins puts up 15 and we win. Don’t care about the OAD culture as much as the rest. I enjoy it when we get them, but we’ve certainly won without them.

    IMHO, Self will always have as good a shot as any coach not named Cal, (as I said above.) at landing a OAD. The guy is in the headlines for winning 30 games and being a #1 or #2 tourney seed every year. That alone gives him an equal shot with Duke, Carolina, UCLA, Arizona, Ohio St. or any other program.

    When you come to think of it, there are usually only a handful of schools these days in the running. Cal has reduced the field by absorbing so many of them. Coach K is 66 and, I believe, is faltering ever so slightly with his Team USA commitments. Roy is getting up there in years (62). Thad Matta has never won it all. Sean “Stumpy” Miller has never been to a FF and only won 30 games once. He had one flash in the pan, but now top recruits are transferring and underperforming. It actually could be Bill Self’s finest decade of recruiting right around the corner.

    --glass half full, as usual--

    clevelandjayhawker 9 years, 6 months ago

    Didn’t know I could get even more excited for Late Night to get here....but it just happen. Thanks Jesse

    Jack Wilson 9 years, 6 months ago

    Yes, great read Jesse. Terrific stuff in mid-May.

    The key is pace and approach.

    First, approach: Will coach Self depart from his feed the post mantra? I just can't see Self becoming more perimeter oriented. It's his game. It's how he plays. But also, will he let non-post players post up their defenders? Will he let Wiggins do that? Even when Releford had a 6'2" guy guarding him, it didn't happen.

    Second, pace: Will he really play fast? On playing fast, the main way we'll know if Self is really playing faster is if there is not a designated player throwing the ball in .. the closest player throws it in. That means we're pushing it on made buckets. Don't bet on it.

    The key to Wiggins scoring 18+ is solely on coach Self's shoulders.

    That all being said, I'm not convinced that Wiggins scoring 18+ per game is clearly a good thing. Don't want the "stand around and watch the star" syndrome to set in. If it is done without guys always looking to him to score, fine. I'll take 22 per game. But if it is constantly deferring to Wiggins, that's a recipe for a quick tourney exit.

    KGphoto 9 years, 6 months ago

    Exactly my thoughts. (see Oakville reply). Durant would put up 35+ and lose to us. I don’t really want a one-man-show.

    Even last year with Mac it was similar. Near the end of the season, in the more competitive games his scoring did not translate into wins. Quite the opposite.

    24 against Baylor = L

    10 against Iowa St. = W

    5 against K=State = W

    11 against W. Kentucky = W

    2 against N. Carolina = W

    20 against Michigan = L

    That’s just raw data, and it can be discussed ad-nauseum but I think there is something to it. Like you said. “Stand around syndrom”. Ben hits a couple shots and everybody is ready to watch him explode for 30, instead of taking on the burden of winning themselves.

    What we need, and what Wiggins needs, is for him to jell with his team and find a way to win. If he’s scoring 15 or 18/game, it won’t matter much if we don’t win.

    Kip_McSmithers 9 years, 6 months ago

    ESPN has Ben for 23 against Baylor. He had 24 in the win against Texas Tech in Big12 tourney. He also had 14 in the win against Texas Tech prior to the Baylor L. And the game before that was his season high (36) against WVU, in which KU also won.

    KGphoto 9 years, 6 months ago

    I clearly wasn’t talking about those games. Tell me, how important or competitive were the Tech games? They were neither. It’s easy to go off scoring against an inferior team. The point is, in the more important, more competitive games, the win-or-go-home, cutthroat games, his scoring did not translate into wins. And when he failed to score in those types of games, the team rose to the occasion and won.

    I’m not making a case against Mac or Wiggins. I’m just saying we aren’t here for Wiggins or Mac. They are here for us. Capice?

    Kevin Huffman 9 years, 6 months ago

    Ummm, regarding the Michigan one....Michigan's late run began when Ben had to go to the bench with foul trouble and noone else was doing jack squat offensively the latter part of the 2nd half.

    otaKU 9 years, 6 months ago

    Way to take a very small pool of games to try and prove your point. What about all the games Ben led the team in scoring and we won? If you're trying to prove a point about being a one man show and losing vs. sharing the basketball and winning please don't try and munipulate the data.

    DanR 9 years, 6 months ago

    KG is talking specifically about the end of the season...his point is just fine.

    otaKU 9 years, 6 months ago

    Its still a small sampling that doesn't factor in the entire season. His point may be fine but skewed.

    KGphoto 9 years, 6 months ago

    Geez, man. I was pretty clear about the sample. Near the end of the season, in the more competitive (clutch) games. The win-or-go-home type of games. I’m not trying to manipulate data, I’m simply discussing it.

    Certainly elite players have won games with elite performances, but please list all the one-man-show teams who’ve won championships. Has Durant won anything? Did Lebron win anything before the Miami trade? Michael Jordon? Anybody?

    You make it out that I’m down on Wiggins or Mac, or something. What’s your beef exactly?

    thmdmph 9 years, 6 months ago

    Last year's team is somewhat a poor comparison. Last year, we desperately needed a go-to guy and a game closer. Coach Self pushed and begged Mac to take that on. Didn't happened to the extend we wanted. When Mac did produce last year, some of those games were because no one else produce. There was no consistency. Wiggins fills in this big gap.

    wrwlumpy 9 years, 6 months ago

    Like Parcell used to say, "When you know this offense well, you'll pray that they blitz you." Same way I feel about any team that wants to double Andrew. He will find the open man, usually for a dunk. Every team in the country will have trouble keeping our 3 guards out of the paint. Dunks, Free Throws and 3's.

    jhawkinsf 9 years, 6 months ago

    Question: Who is the only person who could hold Michael Jordan to under 25 points per game?

    Answer: Dean Smith.

    Who's going to keep Wiggins to under a certain number of points? Self.

    Eliott Reeder 9 years, 6 months ago

    When I get bored out of my mind at work and have already combed through the few worthwhile message board topics of the day several times and then click back to KUSports front page in desperation for something, ANYTHING new to read about the Hawks... and find a Newell Post or Seen it!?! Well, highlight of my day... thanks for all the extra work you guys put in to keep us junkies entertained!

    eric poncharello 9 years, 6 months ago

    Kevin Durant averaged 25.8 points per game and 11.1 rebounds per game during his freshman season with the Texas Longhorns. In Big 12 games he averaged 28.9 points and 12.5 rebounds per game. I wonder if Wiggin's can do the same?

    texashawk10 9 years, 6 months ago

    Can Wiggins duplicate those numbers? No because he won't put up those kind of rebounding numbers. He could duplicate those kind of scoring numbers, but it would be at the expense of team success. Anything over 20 a game for the season and KU probably isn't getting enough scoring from other players to have a successful run in the NCAA tournament.

    thmdmph 9 years, 6 months ago

    I disagree with the thoughts that if Wiggins scores 20+ points/game, it'll be a detriment to the team. Last year, would begged and would love for Mac to score 20+ per. It all depends on needs and the dynamics of the team. Seeing the past KU's teams, I have no reason to think next year's team is going to be very close, esp after hearing how Wiggins & Selden (plus JoJo) got along at some of these elite camps. It will be a closed knit teams that's well rounded WITH a go-to guy that can and will provide well appreciated 20+ points per game.

    Kevin Huffman 9 years, 6 months ago

    Um, no.

    Especially not the rebounds.

    At Texas I think Durant played PF as opposed to SF in the NBA.

    texashawk10 9 years, 6 months ago

    A good year for KU offensively will likely look like Wiggins having similar numbers to McLemore with slightly better rebounding numbers, 17 and 7 would be good numbers for Wiggins. I'm thinking 14 and 8 for Ellis would be good numbers for him. The third leading scorer for KU, whether it ends up being Selden or Tharpe should be in the 11-12 ppg range with the other being at 9-10 a game. 5+ assists per game for Tharpe along with a better than 2.5:1 assist to turnover ratio would be good for him. 15 and 10 combined from the rest of the front court combined would be good numbers. 10 ppg from the back court subs would be good for KU as well. That adds up to 75+ a game which with the athleticism of this team and the shooting capabilities players on this team are bringing in make 75+ppg an attainable number. The biggest question for KU next season will be on defense. This will be a very long team with the exception of Tharpe which should help cover deficiencies this team will have because of its youth. If this team can turn into the kind of defensive team we have become accustomed to seeing from Bill Self, this is a team that can win a national title, but if they don't become the great defensive team we're used to seeing under Bill Self, then we can forget about seeing this team win a national title.

    Bill Skeet 9 years, 6 months ago

    Putting up numbers similar to Durant would make Wiggins an instant legend. But then, so would another national championship, regardless of the numbers..

    JayDocMD 9 years, 6 months ago

    Perhaps now's a good time to reevaluate the Anrio Adams departure. If my math is correct, without AA leaving we would not have had the scholarships to sign both Black and Wiggins. Now maybe the Mickelson transfer wouldn't have been offered if AA had stayed, but it's interesting to consider.

    Jack Wilson 9 years, 6 months ago

    Interesting how that works out, isn't it ... and how when Adams reconsidered, Self thought not so much.

    Kevin Huffman 9 years, 6 months ago

    I think it probably would've negated the Mickelson transfer if we were confident in Wiggins & Black (not sure that we were though - so in the end probably ACTUALLY, would've led to no T. Black).

    Colby Hebert 9 years, 6 months ago

    Jesse, keep it coming, this is a great thought provoking and informative article! Feed us more!! Over/under on Selden, Embiid, Ellis, and Tharpe? Bring it!

    I agree with Jesse as well, I think he will be around 17 points per game. Self's offense is just usually so balanced. I know we have no returning starters but Ellis is about to break out in my opinion. We may even see Ellis as our leading scorer. His face up game inside is unique and intriguing and I just think it took awhile for him to fit it into the collegiate level. Tharpe will chuck it up. Selden is very talented and will get his. We will still feed the post as well.

    Ben could get hot from 3 which really spiked his average higher than it otherwise might have been. Is Wiggins as pure of an outside shooter? It is hard to believe he is, even as talented as he is. It depends on if Wiggins has the ball-handling to drive and slash and draw fouls. If he can get to the line a lot, 20 ppg then could be in the realm of possibilities.

    To showcase Wiggins though, I do not think he has to score at a historic average. If we make a deep run in the tournament, a FF or a championship, that would make him just as wanted as a prospect. GM's know how KU is and what kind of coach Self is.

    We got a load of people drafted off that 2008 championship with no real "go to" guy. It was very balanced. If you are on a bad team you want your individual stats to be impressive. If you are contending for a championship on a balanced team even guys averaging 10ppg will get a look by the league. Sasha and Jackson got drafted without putting up big numbers or being hyped, they benefited from a deep run in the NCAA tournament.

    Win games and everything else will take care of itself. If our freshman adjust well to college, and Ellis has a break out year and we win it all, we could lose Ellis, Embiid, Selden and Wiggins to the draft. I would take that though, we would have another banner to show for it and we still have got talented and intriguing kids in the pipeline.

    Kevin Huffman 9 years, 6 months ago

    I just have a feeling that NO WAY does Ellis leave without a at a minimum I would think he'd stick around for '14/'15. Having said that I'd also be surprised honestly if ANYONE other than Wiggins left at the end of next year.

    Our chances very well could be even better in '14/'15 even with Wiggins leaving. Would have plenty of experience returning.

    Colby Hebert 9 years, 6 months ago

    Wiggins is really the only sure fire OAD we have, but the NBA has a tendency to draft potential as well. Embiid is soaring up the prospect rankings. I do not see all of our freshman playing at a high level right away, but the talent is there to make it a possibility.

    If we just lose Wiggins, I agree we would be an experienced and very talented team the next year, with likely an even better chance at cutting down the nets. This year there are so many question marks. A full season of development on all the ?'s will turn them into !!!'s

    Colby Hebert 9 years, 6 months ago

    You see it in the NFL as well, every time a team wins it all, the other teams in the league pick off a lot of their guys in free agency.

    texashawk10 9 years, 6 months ago

    I looked at a couple of other sites as well and Wayne Selden is showing up as a late lottery prospect in quite a few 2014 mocks. I think there's a decent chance Selden ends up being a OAD. Embiid however isn't showing up on any credible mocks that have been updated in the past few days so I'm going with he's at least a 2 year player. Also interesting to see that Perry Ellis is showing up as a 1st round prospect and I've seen Tarik Black's name in the late second round a couple of times.

    Suzi Marshall 9 years, 6 months ago

    I can not tell you how many points AW will average next year. A better bet might be how many shots will he take? Knowing Self, he will want AW to take his shots in the offensive flow of the game, pushing the ball into the paint. I'd take the bet he will average 16 shots per game and 7 FT per game. IF he's 50% on FG and 85% from the line....he's over 18. Hopefully, he'll have alot of dunks off steals, back door plays, and drives.

    Adam Bengtson 9 years, 6 months ago

    Why is this an article? Were obsessed with numbers to much. I want one other statistic it better involve 35 wins, BIg 12 title, and National Title.

    VaJay 9 years, 6 months ago

    The thing is, it was a good article. The posts that followed showed who was obsessing too much ;)

    Dirk Medema 9 years, 6 months ago

    "No other college player was given similar attention on the site."

    You apparently missed this line in the opening paragraph. Apparently Vegas and a bunch of the nation/world thinks its significant.

    John Gill 9 years, 6 months ago

    IMHO Ellis is they 2nd coming of Wayne Simien, and look where that places him in the season ave scoring chart. After Ellis score the first 3 buckets of the game with a variety of basically un-defendable post moves, opposing 2 guard will start having to hedge off his man to double down on Ellis, which with any the potential options at that position,leave them deadly open for a 3-pt J or first explosive step to the hole. Self's traditional hi-lo might even morph to a triangle set with the shooting and driving ability we'll have at the 2 & 3 spots.

    ottomark 9 years, 6 months ago

    This is called trolling, kudos to you for doing it. Andrew will score 18 because he'll have to next year -- in ways few Hawks have had to score 18 at KU before.

    Dirk Medema 9 years, 6 months ago

    The greatest counter-point to him getting 18 is the fact that he is suppposed to be a very unselfish player that creates for others as much as for himself. In some ways, I can see a line-up with Conner or Greene as the third perimeter player - allowing Andrew and Wayne create and draw attention with kick-outs for auto-3's or dumps to a post that is left alone.

    Pitthawk34 9 years, 6 months ago

    Can't we just let the kid play ball and not have to put expectations on him either over or under on points! POOR BLOG. Just my OP.

    Randy Bombardier 9 years, 6 months ago

    I see him putting up 20 or more points if he is aggressive as some of his highlights have shown. I would like to see him strive to drive, so to speak, as it opens up so many good looks. Being too unselfish, not aggressive enough, trying to hard to rotate the ball can backfire.

    Michael Luby 9 years, 6 months ago

    Fun stuff Jesse, thanks. My gut feeling is that Wiggins tops 18/game.
    either way it will be a very exciting season, cant get here soon enough!

    texashawk10 9 years, 6 months ago

    If number 4 starts happening, that could be trouble for KU. That's what teams started doing to Kevin Durant and Michael Beasley and those teams each lost double digit games for the season and neither made it past the opening weekend of the NCAA tournament. USC actually knocked both of them out. When the scoring gets too unbalanced, it does become very difficult to make a deep tournament run because it takes one slightly off game by a star scorer to send his team home.

    jaybate 9 years, 6 months ago

    Part 1

    First, Andrew Wiggins scoring hinges on his own 3PT shooting and on Wayne Selden's 3PT shooting. Andrew has to shoot it very well, or they will just lay way off of him and clobber him off the bounce. Wayne has to shoot it well enough to keep the defense from sagging back side to clog Andrew's alleys to iron. To get the most out of Andrew, it takes both.

    Numerically speaking, If Andrew can shoot 40% from trey, and Wayne can shoot even 38% from trey (or if someone else among AWIII, Greene and Conner can shoot 45% from trey), then Andrew Wiggins holds such a phenomenal MUA putting it on the deck that he could easily (and probably will have to) average 25 ppg on next year's team, while Perry averages 20 ppg, and the other two starters and two subs chip in 25 to get the team to the magic number of Okie Ball: 70, as in 70 point take what they give us.

    Without Andrew AND Wayne (or someone else) accurate from trey, then it is sag city and in D1, Andrew will be fouled so much that his get to the rim game will be slowed to a grind.

    Next, will board rats please stop with the running?

    Bill Self has been here almost a decade and his teams have never run more than situationally, regardless of personnel. It is now fair to say that his teams are never going to play a buzzer to buzzer running game. Rather they are going to oscillate between shortening the court with transition a third, or a half the time, and lengthening it the rest of the time.

    In 70-point-take-what-they-give-you, with the long and athletics Self's teams tend to have, the opposing teams are just not going to give KU many chances to run. And Self's teams do not dictate tempo. Rather they goose it up and down based on what the opponent is giving and on what the MUAs permit. Self teams take what is given.

    When Self talks about playing up-tempo, he just means getting it up the floor quickly with long passes, or with a point guard pushing it, to probe for a transition basket, before "running the stuff" to make them "slide awhile" before someone gets the ball where he can "make a play."

    Dirk Medema 9 years, 6 months ago

    Naadir from 3 or Coach Self will be REALLY tempted to use Dead-eye Conner at the one like da Bulls did with Jordan/Pippen and whoever they had play the "1". The original version of what Miami does with LeBron/DWade and Rio.

    jaybate 9 years, 6 months ago

    I have been assuming Naa will be just enough of a threat out front to keep the front from sagging. Its the back side sag that I am worried about; i.e., the wing opposite Wiggins. Whenever KU has not had a serious trey gun at both wings, then the backside sagging really clogs things up inside for the front side wing and makes him less of a threat on the drive. We need Selden to be that wing, because we need Selden's defense and perimeter muscle on the floor. Almost certainly one of AWIII, Greene, or Conner have the gun out of the box to stretch the back side wing opposite Wiggin, but these guys all lack the every night MUA combination of length and strength that Selden promises.

    I don't want to jinx Wayne, because in the long term I think he is destined to be one of our best perimeter guys ever. But if he can't drain the trey this season at 40%, he is going to have to give up at least 20-25 minutes per game to one of AWIII, Greene, or Conner. Maybe more. The only way to optimize Wiggins, and Self has to optimize Wiggins, or this team will struggle with scoring, is a 40% trey guy on the opposite wing. Having that gun on the opposite wing is even MORE important for Wiggins than it was for Ben. Why? Because Wiggins is apparently not as good of an outside shooter as Ben was. The weaker outside gun means Wiggins has to get to the rim more often to score. He can't be efficient and do that with both his man sagging and the back side wing defender sagging.

    As the team is currently comprised, and beyond the given that Wiggins has to be able to drain it from trey at 40%, the three most important get betters that need to happen are:

    1) at the backside wing, Selden has to develop a 40% trey, or the other wing shooters that can shoot 40% have to muscle up;

    2) one of our bigs has to learn to shoot 70% from the FT stripe; and

    3) that same big has to become a fierce defensive rebounder that can guard the post.

    Looking at our assortment of bigs, that big man at the 5 is likely going to be this team's Achilles' Heel, unless old dogs named Tarik and Jamari can learn some new tricks, or several caterpillar bigs can wriggle through their metamorphoses waaaaaaaay faster than normal.

    jaybate 9 years, 6 months ago

    Part 2

    Self's teams all become like good pitchers with a number of speeds on a number of different types of pitches. Self's offenses keep changing up on the defenses, so that the defenses are never "comfortable," are never quite sure of the pace of the attack. But they do so based on what is given both in the opponents defensive skeme and the opponents match-ups at any given moment of substitutions.

    It doesn't take a rocket scientist to look at this team and see that there is going to be a two pronged attack with Andrew and Perry, two natural scorers with great physical abilities, too.

    The obvious missing link is a dominant defensive rebounder, like Thomas Robinson, or a tirelessly scrappy tandem of less dominant boarders like Kevin and Jeff.

    With Perry needing to do A LOT of scoring, the other big is going to have to get on the glass along with Selden and Wiggins, when Wiggins is not pulling the trigger.

    Self has to be hoping that among Black, Jamari, Lucas, and Embiid, someone (or some committe) emerges as a kind of Thomas Robinson that doesn't have to score.

    But everyone of these guys has big question marks about his rebounding.

    Black, according to Jesse's research, has never been much of a defensive rebounder.

    Jam Tray is one of those great leaping studs that does not seem to have the "knack" of rebounding.

    Lucas we don't know about, because we haven't seen him. We have to hope he was given a rouge smoking jacket, because he could grab some caroms.

    Embiid's height makes him a hugely appealing candidate, to both rebound and block and alter, but he is reputedly raw and skinny.

    Somethings never change in basketball.

    Great drivers can't be great drivers unless they can pot the triceratop and have a teammate that can keep the defense honest on the back side.

    You've got to have someone that can go get the basketball when the opponents miss.

    And you've got to have someone that can protect and distribute the ball, presumably Naadir.

    And everyone's got to be able to guard their position and help.

    Oh,and someone's got to be able to feed the post.

    Its amazing how hard it is to find all of this each season even at the top programs.

    Self is so successful largely because he keeps finding these pieces.

    If Andrew, or Wayne, can't drain the trey at 40%, then maybe Conner, AWIII, or Greene can.

    And even if they can't, you could play a damned good game of grind it out on the bounce with Wayne's muscle and Andrew's length.

    But defensive rebounding--you just gotta have it. And so there could be a real problem, unless some guys show some serious chops in short order.

    thmdmph 9 years, 6 months ago

    One of Self's first thoughts after learning of Wiggins' signing is that KU's fan base will be very impressed when we first see Wiggins plays in Lawrence. Wiggins is super athletic and versatile with lots of weapons. It's all speculations at this point, but with what we know now, I think the probability that he scores +18 is much higher than -18 probability. I actually think he'll be 20+ player. It also depends largely on the rest of the team and his own development.

    Many past years, before the season begins, we felt KU is talented and deep, but when the season begins, we find out we lack fire power, depth, a go-to guy or enough talent to draw double teams away from our team's top offensive threat. This next year, Wiggins' production depends on how his teammates develops. As of today, I think they will punish doubling down on Wiggins.

    The up coming team is horribly athletic and well rounded. Wiggins and JoJo are very athletic for their positions and definitely plays above the rim. Talking about playing above the rim, Selden definitely fits that mold and helps speed up the game and deflects attention from Wiggins. Talking about speeding up the game and deflecting defensive attentions, seeing his U17 game this past year, Frankamp's driving skills through the lanes can also help with that as well. He definitely has the sharp shooting skills to open up the half court game for Wiggins to drive.

    With Wiggins driving, you can't really leave Ellis, Jojo, or Black undefended. Black is a killer when assisted down low. Ellis is a man on his own rights and can create his own shots. JoJo, with his athleticism and depending on weight training and play time, can also makes the defense think twice about leaving him to double Wiggins. Finally, the captain of the ship, Naadir, another year wiser and more experienced, can also open up the half court and minimize doubling on Wiggins. Being a year wiser, if he becomes more patient and is able to slow down the game in his head and see the court better, this would also help Wiggins with assists, not that Wiggins needs any.

    I don't see how the defense can lay off any of these guys to double down on Wiggins, as previous teams would have allowed. Last year, in tournament plays and in crunch times, teams were able to completely play off Young. No more.

    As for his development, he's good from beyond the 15 & 20' range, but Wiggins can definitely become more consistent (be like Mac). That will make defending him so much more difficult.

    Lastly, I think the higher profile schedule will help Wiggins get the +20 points average. Wiggins does have tendency to tone down his games in some mundane matches. He thrives when the pressure is on. Part of Bill's job this year is to get Wiggins to come ready to play each and every games. KU's 2013-14 schedule make that easier.

    Tony Bandle 9 years, 6 months ago


    The string of posts on both sides of this issue are well-thought and expressed with poise and passion. Not only are the regulars on their game but new guys show up and hit home runs as well [2ndprize who are you and where did YOU come from..welcome aboard!! ].

    JESSE, I think all you have to do is every day just ask one question, " What do you think of Jayhawk basketball?" and all of us posters will take care of the rest!!

    jaybate 9 years, 6 months ago

    I like your take about the scoring, even though it contradicts my expectation. Logic coupled with historical path dependence is persuasive.

    But Simien averaged 20ppg.

    Still, I really don't see very many situations where I would rather have Selden, Naadir, and the committee at the 5 taking a shot instead of Wiggins and the Designer(Mr. Anywhere and Mr. Inside). I think they each get 15 FGAs per game.

    Scott Smetana 9 years, 6 months ago

    Other Las Vegas Over/Unders:

    87 - Average lines of each Jaybate post this year 11 - Times this season Calipari says, "We have freshmen playing like freshmen" 3,500 - KU fans in Allen Field House West in December 7 - Comparisons made each game by commentators between BMac and Wiggins 10:1 - Odds KU goes 40-0 this season

    GabrielMichael 9 years, 6 months ago

    Don't care too much how much he scores as long as we share the ball and attack. I believe our dribble/drive penetration has potential to be the best we've seen at Kansas.

    REHawk 9 years, 6 months ago

    If he stays healthy, I envision Alpha Dog scoring 14-19 points, game in and out, with a half dozen 23+ games sprinkled throughout the season. I can see JoJo averaging 12 pts. after the first of Feb. And I anticipate that our long range scorers pitch in a handful of 20+ performances. On nights when the opposition is stacked unfavorably against Wiggins, or when his touch is missing, I think Self has a bevy of remedies encased in this scholarship lineup. Am tapping my toes in eager anticipation of this season's tipoff.

    ollerfarm 9 years, 6 months ago

    Nadar is another TTaylor. Ball sticks in his hands, if only he was as good as he thinks he is, that would be great. Bill needs a freasman starting point guard with Nadar coming off the bench. I don't think KU can win the NCAA chanp with N.T. at starting point.

    REHawk 9 years, 6 months ago

    That position is Tharpe's to secure or lose. Mason or Frankamp had best arrive with mighty solid defense and ball protection skills if one of them is able to uproot Tharpe with his two years of experience. I think that the biggest adjustment for N.T. will lie in the fact that he will be accompanied by a very different group of starters, players whose skill sets are more gifted offensively while still green defensively. Considering the bold pre-league schedule, we should know by midDecember if N.T. can shoulder the point guard generalship, or if one of the talented newcomers can push him out of the starting lineup.

    yovoy 9 years, 6 months ago

    I've wondered how well Mr. Wiggins will score for the year he's here. I wasn't thinking anywhere near 18; I was thinking 15ish, but many above make the great point that we don't return much scoring. I'm also thinking that his ppg avg, is going to depend on they "type" of scoring he does.

    That said, I'm wondering how "assertive" we want him to be. If he's as an efficient scorer as BMac, then by all means, he should try to fill it up every night. I just wonder how we will feel when he puts it up 18-30 times/game, and goes 6-for-23. I'm guessing it will depend on if we win or if we lose those games.

    I'm guessing that he will facilitate much more than any of us would imagine. I can see this kid having ~6 assists/game, I can also see him making it to the line, and getting lots of points that way. I'm guessing that he'll avg. 4-6 "junk" points (stickbacks, tips, loose-ball layups). I also believe his ppg will depend on our guards and how well they shoot the ball. If teams try to play gimmicky to keep AW out of the paint, our guys will have to knock down some jumpers, and everyone will have to be acconted for: that leave AW space to work. Putting it all together, if he's a volume shooter (10-15 ppg easy), adding junk points (4 ppg), and f/t (6-10 ppg), then he could be closer to 20 by the end. If he's not volume shooting, those numbers might be lower, but the results might make us happier when all is said and done. If he's volume AND efficient like BMac, then the sky is the limit.

    I like to use Sherron as an example: at any point in his career, he could've gotten the team 15-20 ppg, and in a variety of ways: from distance, driving it, and f/t. He kept us in lots of games by force of will, and even if he didn't have much of a cast, he had a good enough cast that he didn't have to do as much as he tried to. He cost others "development" time, and we faded before many felt we should've. The kid came here ready-made, but he had to wait the system. When he WAS the system, we didn't do so well. AW is supposed to be much more ready-made than Sherron, but he joins a team that's much like the team Sherron had his last 2 years: it had some stars, but they weren't quite ready to shine. I hope this crew is ready to. By Feb/March, I'm guessing that AW will be averaging the number of points he needs to for the team to win. I'm not sure we'll see that early-on though.

    Commenting has been disabled for this item.