In all honesty how will this years team be?

  • OK I haven’t had a lot of time to research/follow/read over worded post to really get a grasp on this years team.

    I know about the returnee’s from last year and what they bring individually, I don’t know a lot about the newbies and really not concerned about individuals, but as a team in whole.

    Can anyone tell me what this years team will be about and how they will function as a whole?


  • I can’t help. I have to watch them play a few games.

  • @JRyman I think you’re in for a real treat this year. I think we’ll be better in a bunch of ways, including defense, passing, ball handling, better 3 point shooting, better guard play, etc. Our challenges will be matching up with bigs in the post, as we are smaller down there than in year’s past. Still, we won a national championship with a smaller team, so I think there’s certainly a chance we get back to the winner’s circle this year.

  • Self has pretty much come out and said he wants to play more small ball. Some players might even be a 4 in some lineups even though that’s not their true position. He went back to boot camp being 2 weeks and that has seemed to have a better effect than last years 1 week. He has said last years team was soft, he was soft on them and has gone to good measure to correct that issue in this years team.

    I can’t really tell you for sure that this team will be better than last year because anytime you lose 3 starters and 2 of them are 1 & 3 in the NBA draft you can’t just replace them. But its KU, and we have certainly done this before many times over.

    Most concerned about our PG situation than anything. The freshman Graham from all acounts seems to be pressing for starters minutes. It’s clear he’s going to play and probably going to get 20 minutes a game, maybe more or less. We might start 2 other freshman as well giving us a similar situation as last year just with a few more year older players.

    Our schedule is really not that much easier than last years. We don’t play away from Allen Fieldhouse for a month again so that’s a huge plus. But 2nd game Kentucky, Florida, Georgetown, potentially Michigan St in Florida, Utah, Temple, its not your cup cake schedule many teams will be playing.

  • Before I get my daily dose of @drgnslayr and @HighEliteMajor , I am very confident we will lose ten games, finish second in conference, and finish strong and surprise a few teams in March.

    Apre those two, I am pumped and think Wooden is speaking through them and to Self and we are looking at a 30 win season with a bunch of mighty mights.

    So: I do what any dry-washing, metamorphosed Kafka anti-hero would do and split the difference and say, "Conference tie for first, 29-7, Elite Elite Eight. 🙂

  • I’ll say much tougher defensively on the perimeter. Will remind us more of the 2008 (OK probably the 2007) team. Well balanced. Ellis, Selden, and maybe Oubre the leading scorers. We’ll be hurt more by teams with good big men than we are used to. Tied for first in the conference. Feels like an elite 8 team. Maybe better if everything comes together. I don’t see 10 losses.

  • Here’s Seth Greensburgs take from watching KU practice. Unfortunately you must be an insider to read the whole thing, but he sounds like a fan.

    ESPN article

    Kansas forward Perry Ellis is one of the most complete players in college basketball this season. Despite losing Joel Embiid and Andrew Wiggins, Kansas will once again be in the discussion for a national title. The Jayhawks have a championship pedigree and are led by Bill Self, one of the best coaches in college basketball. They also added another talented recruiting class to a strong, veteran core.

    I spent time this week in Lawrence, Kansas, to check out the Jayhawks in person. After speaking with Self and watching Kansas practice, here are my biggest takeaways.

    1. Perry Ellis is a unique talent

    The junior forward really understands how to play. He has great footwork and seals in the high-low offense as well as any player in the country. Ellis shoots the ball to 17 feet comfortably, and moves and reads the defense on the block to create angles. Though he’s not the vocal leader you expect at this point of his college career, he simply “does his job."

    1. Kansas is a legitimate title contender – in time

    The Jayhawks will be ready come March, but they are a work in progress at the moment. It will take time for freshmen Cliff Alexander and Kelly Oubre to reach their potential; however there is no denying their work ethic and willingness to be coached. Both work hard, and by February they will be tough to handle. Kansas has a great culture and the first-year players will benefit from that culture.

    Wayne Selden

    1. Wayne Selden has his bounce and explosiveness back

    When attacking the basket, he is almost impossible to stop. Selden cannot get caught up in showing everyone he is a jump shooter, but rather think “attack” first. He can shoot the ball, however few players in the country finish like him. The sophomore guard will be a lockdown defender, and has the versatility to play multiple positions this season.

    1. Oubre is an athletic freak

    The former McDonald’s All-American has long arms and fast-twitch, explosive movements. He is learning what a good shot is and where his shots are coming from. Oubre plays consistently hard, runs the floor and is difficult to keep off the glass. He can play and defend both the small forward and power forward positions, which gives Kansas versatility. I expect him to be a lockdown defender early in his college career.

    1. The new backcourt has serious potential

    Frank Mason and freshman Devonte Graham will end up playing together in the backcourt a significant amount, and especially during crunch time. Mason has a little Allen Iverson in him. He is tough, and can create separation for the jumper or the drive downhill. He has a better feel for the game than most realize. Graham plays with excellent pace, creates in the lane and is a solid on-ball defender. Both are tough enough to defend either guard position.

    1. Kansas has a new international sensation

    Sviatoslav Mykhailiuk, a 6-foot-8 freshman shooting guard from Ukraine, is one of the most complete young players I have seen in a long time. The 17-year-old has guard skills, shoots the ball well from 3-point range and possesses a high basketball IQ. Mykhailiuk sees all five defenders off ball screens and penetration, and his international experience gives him a maturity well beyond his years. He has excellent length (which my colleague Jay Bilas will like), and with added strength will be a tough matchup. By February, it will be hard to keep him off the court.

    1. Alexander will be a beast – but not right away

    Alexander must understand how to use his body and seal the defender, but once he does, watch out. He runs the floor, has great hands and although he doesn’t have great lift, he is explosive around the basket. An excellent defensive rebounder, Alexander was a better ball-screen defender than expected. A concern early will be his ability to pass out of double-teams. Coach Norm Roberts, who works with the Kansas big men, does an excellent job with the frontcourt players. There’s no doubt that by the second half of the season, Alexander will improve. His willingness to be coached and how he embraced coaching were impressive.

    1. Jamari Traylor has developed offensively

    The junior forward has improved each year at Kansas, and he reminds me of a combination of former Florida big men Patric Young and Will Yeguete. He plays hard every possession, runs the floor and pursues every rebound and loose ball. Though not known as an offensive force, he’s shown signs of development. Traylor does an excellent job of sealing in the post and can drive the ball from the high post. He understands his role in the Kansas system and sets a tone for the Jayhawks.

    1. Brannen Greene has much to learn

    Greene should be a major contributor for the Jayhawks this season, and every time he takes a shot you think it’s going in. But I’m not sure he makes enough winning plays. He rarely makes anyone else better, and does not look like he competes consistently. If he would buy in and give of himself to his teammates, he could be extremely valuable. After observing him for two days, it seems like he needs to earn the trust and respect of his coaching staff and teammates.

    1. Self is one of the nation’s best

    This is a prior known fact, but I want to emphasize it again. Self runs a great practice and program and really relates well to his players. He demands a lot from them, but does it in such a way that they respond. Self is an excellent teacher and communicator, and he has a veteran staff that understands his system. He has a system, but will tweak it to fit his players’ strengths. Kansas plays fast and smart offensively, and is relentless defensively. Few coaches get their players to play as hard consistently as Self does.

  • A pic of the uniforms


  • I am so pumped because I seriously think KU is going to win every game they play. I don’t ever go into a KU game thinking they’re going to lose. Now some games give me pause, i.e. Kentucky early on, and I wouldn’t be surprised if we lose to them, but i really can’t remember the last time I thought we were going to lose a basketball game. Probably Kentucky 3 seasons ago was the last time I thought we’d lose a game.

    I look forward to Ellis carrying the team as the seasoned veteran, Conor shooting confidently, and Seldon’s game wowing us with his silky smooth polish that he has.

    The first year guys I have no clue. I never do. Kirk and Nick weren’t ‘lottery pick’ signees, but impressed right from the start. In some ways I was disappointed in Wigs last year while being man crush like impressed by Joel.

    Mason will continue his schizophrenic ways, Brannen will continue to leave us scratching our heads.

    I will always be amazed at Jamari who somehow survived homelessness in January in Chicago to become a trusted supersub in Allen Fieldhouse, someone whom the magic of KU basketball is setting him on a positive course for his entire life.

    And goodness that picture from @Crimsonorblue22 of the team. Wow, Alexander is going to make some people run away and hide. Look at the size of that young man!

  • Last year for the sake of giving the one and done more playing time, Coach Self made more concessions than he ever has as a coach, starting with a shorter boot camp; the result was not good, at least not by his or KU standards that we have become accustomed to. This will not happen again.

    I believe will be see a team that will go back to playing Self-ball which starts with tough defense and full ball rotation before a shot is taken. Yes. he might occasionally use an unconventional lineup but by and large we will see true and tried vintage Self-ball, another conference title and a deep run in March.

  • Very Good.

  • @Crimsonorblue22 Cliff makes Jamri look like he needs to hit the weight room with Hudy more.

  • @JRyman

    I respectfully disagree. Jamari has shed most of the fat and is all muscle while Cliff still has HS fat. Once Andrea is done with Cliff he will look a lot leaner with better muscle definition and much improved endurance. Compare the picture below with the picture of Cliff in a similar pose above…just look a the shoulder/bicep definition and and you can see what I am talking about.


  • @JayHawkFanToo got that right!!!

  • @JayHawkFanToo

    I agree. Bam-Bam is defined. The point may be that Cliff’s overall size is bigger. Cliff is one big dude! I can’t wait to see these two on the floor at the same time.

  • @dylans Thanks for the post … The Brannen Greene thing stands out to me. Seems like some of that info might be from more than just observation, and maybe a conversation with a coach.

  • @HighEliteMajor

    Will he end up being the man out again?

  • @JayHawkFanToo I’m beginning to think that’s a real possibility. If he isn’t a fit this year, I’m quite sure that he’s gone. There was never discussion that Andrew White didn’t “buy in.” He seemed to buy in 100%. Must have been something else.

    Really interested to see how this plays out. A few good games, etc., some big hustle plays, all can be forgotten. Sounds like there may be issues with teammates. I just hate to speculate on stuff like that, though. But that can hold a guy back just as much as a poor 3 percentage.

  • @Crimsonorblue22 Think about that line up for a second! Mason, Selden, Oubre, Traylor & Alexander, with Conner as 6th man. Thats just sick. From what I have read and heard so far those guys are going to be hard core this year. They better be with 2 weeks boot camp mixed in with Marine Corps boot camp stuff. Defense and Offense like a freekin Wolf Pack. Like the 07 and 08 teams were. KU’s returners are hungry to prove themselves and our freshmen have caught the bug too. They are hungry and will be hard to stop. I think they will absolutely improve from last years 10 loss season. Win loss count? I dont know. But I think they get to the elite 8 at least.

  • @Lulufulu

    I dig your enthusiasm! I feel the same way.

    Is it just me… I get a feeling that these guys sort of break the mold from what we’ve been experiencing the last few years. I get a feeling they have a super toughness to them and have potential to get extremely fired up for games.

    I’m more excited for this season even over last year!

  • @HighEliteMajor I really hope he figures it out, I think grade-wise, he’s pretty smart.

  • Thanks for all the info and outlook for this years team.

    Love small ball, speed can be a killer.

    Love aggressive teams on both sides of the court. Be it pressing, trapping or just pressure man to man. Offense that runs set plays to get easy looks and penetration from the wings that give you options of a layup, a dish or a kick out plus you can draw fouls and score from the line.

    Again thanks, can’t wait for the season to start.

    Rock Chalk Jayhawk

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