Leaving aside for the moment potential incoming OADs at shooting forward, Self has five options listed in no particular order of probability to consider.

    OPTION 1: KELLY OUBRE–Oubre is a fascinating situation. He apparently came to play for one season, but he, like fellow OAD Cliff Alexander never ruled out a second season that I recall. Oubre had a very strange freshman season for an extraordinary talent anticipated probably to be an OAD. Oubre struggled early partly because of some possible injury issues and possibly because of some struggle with the weight, strength and speed of opposing D1 defenders early. The issues resolved by December, however, and he blossomed for a time going on a three point shooting binge, playing good defense, getting some strips and rebounding well for his position and his slight build as a freshman. But then some kind of injury to his right knee seemed to hamper him down the stretch of the season. His three point shooting percentage dropped precipitously and ended at .358, seriously below past KU shooting forwards like Brannen Rush, Xavier Henry and Brady Morningstar, none of whom achieved stardom, or even long journeymen careers, in the NBA at any position. But on the other hand Kelly’s modest trey percentage was comparable to Andrew Wiggins’ modest trey percentage, and appeared to be achieved on an injured knee. So: if the knee were to restore function at KU, or in the NBA, there is reason to expect that he could be an extraordinary combination of Wiggins like length and agility, if not towering athleticism, plus a better trey. This seems to be the kind of potential that makes NBA scouts both drool and handwring–a high ceiling if the pop returns. Draft boards rank him high enough to think he will go to the NBA now. On the other hand, Kelly Oubre did not even make first, or second, team All Big 12. He did get honorable mention. It might be a little scary for an NBA GM to tell his owner that he was drafting a guy in the lottery that averaged only 21 mpg, shot only .358 from college range three, and was only honorable mention in a conference that flamed out in the NCAA tournament and produced first and second all conference teams of non lottery pick players ahead of Kelly. Kelly to me seems on the bubble of going, or staying. If they collect information and find he will be drafted in the top 15 on potential, then he goes. Otherwise, I suspect he stays. Given the tendency of a number of NBA teams to draft 3 or so foreign players in the top 15, that means that Kelly has to be among the 12 highest ceiling players in USA, despite his knee. I can’t imagine that is the case after watching the NCAA tournament. Kentucky has 5-7 of them without knee problems. Duke has another 3-5 without knee problems. Arizona has another 2. Wisconsin one. North Carolina one. And Gonzaga probably has one. And there have to be another 3-4 out there I don’t even know about. And so what this really comes down to is not whether the NBA drafts on potential, which we know that it does, but whether Kelly decides it is better to get some sure money by accepting being drafted lower than 15, or come back another year, rehab, and be a tested, hot commodity with more muscle mass to protect him from the blue meanies. If there were significant doubt about the restoration of pop, then the thing to do would be to jump at any willingness to draft him however low. If his pop is not a question, and how can it not be, then I could see him waiting–maybe. I can see him staying or going, Because Self listed Selden only among the 1 and 2 guards that might not all be back, my hunch is that means Oubre will be back at the 3, or that Self has an OAD three in the bag. I figure we would have heard rumors about that by now. So I am seeing Oubre staying.

    OPTION 2: WAYNE SELDEN, JR.–Surely the most enigmatic, sharply talented KU player, since Tyshawn Taylor, probably since Kenny Gregory, maybe of all time. This is some confounding company to be in. We all remember the great Tyshawn Taylor of his remarkable senior season, but he was arguably even more flaky and unpredictable in his freshman, sophomore and junior seasons than Wayne was in his unforgettable-for-the-wrong-reasons sophomore season. Wayne ranged from sterling to psychologically disconnected not only from the game of basketball but from his own seemingly gifted body. The issue seemed to be entirely inside his cranium (note: all involved claimed the knee was well and the pop was back even though it showed at most intermittently), as was the case with Tyshawn his first three seasons of Self searching for ways to unlock the athletic greatness within him. If other things were equal, we could expect Wayne to have another up and down season his junior season, and then a killer senior season. But other things are not equal. We live in the age of Self recruiting OADs. Tyshawn Taylor might never have happened, for worse, and then for better, had Self been able to attract OADs in greater numbers then, or at all his senior season. The OAD phenomenon is very hard on many things. It is hard on coaches, because it makes every successful season come down to one recruiting season, and means every team is young. It is hard on OADs, because they must grow up faster than most can, or should, and exposes them to punking plays before most appear ready. But what is often overlooked is how hard on the OAD phenomenon is on the non-OAD. The non-OAD, which now is what one time OAD Wayne Selden, Jr., is now as a soon-to-be junior. In prior years, this is the season that Wayne would be expected to become a consistent player, the way Travis Releford did. Or maybe to go through a repackaging year as Tyshawn did intended to ready him for senior stardom. But in the OAD era, each season one does not jump to the NBA is risk that an OAD will come and banish you to a back up roll, as first Xavier Henry, and then Josh Selby did, to Brady Morningstar, and thus arrest your development. Not one, not two but three players are likely coming to arrest Wayne Selden, Jr.’s development. One IS too-young-last-season Euro phenom Svi. One may be Malik Newman. One may be OAD Kelly Oubre becoming TAD Kelly Oubre. Even just two of those players are apt to retire Wayne Selden, Jr., honorable mention starter, as a starter and turn him instead into a role player that might have been a consistent starter. How can an honorable mention all conference player become a role playing back up before he becomes a likely second team all conference player, if he were just to get to keep starting and become the consistent player he would likely become this next season? The NBA, and its OAD rule, that’s how. It is a knife with two edges. Wayne enjoyed the one edge that made him a premium as a freshman. Now, he may get sliced by the other edge that chases him with another OAD. But this is how it is. Wayne’s sophomore turn overs mark him as expendable. He ended the season with as many as starting point guard Frank Mason, and hardly touched the ball in any high risk situations. And Wayne Selden, Jr.’s 38% FG average and 36% 3pt average, and pitiful 2.8 rebounds and acutely pitiful 22 steals in 29 mpg can be out produced by tiny Frank Mason and not so tiny Devonte Graham, and long Brannen Greene, and almost certainly surpassed by an OAD like Malik Newman. And even Svi of the horrible first season stats, Mykhailiuk, if Self is to be believed, is set to break out and meet or beat those numbers. Thus, Wayne’s future as a starter appear over unless Malik does not come, and someone other than Wayne leaves. His productivity numbers FG%, 3pt%, steals, and rebounds are just too low to invest another season in, even though another season invested in him would probably lead to him being a consistent player. Self apparently owed Wayne a season for Wayne playing hurt as a freshman. With that debt now paid, Self likely feels free to re-invest elsewhere. It can be a cruel game.

    OPTION 3: BRANNEN GREENE—Brannen’s dad reputedly says Brannen is coming back, but even if there had been no parental reports on Brannen, his shooting numbers stick out like a sore wing! Brannen averaged 42% FGs, and 40% 3PT, while playing through a stretch of games in which he appeared paler than Casper the Friendly Ghost, and various nicks (i.e., injuries that might require minor surgery post season). That he has survived Self’s wrath and description as a man lacking a conscience about shooting says how much Self likes and wants his fieryness and trey gun around, despite his repulsion at his awkwardness and tangled feet. And he did attain those shooting averages playing perhaps a style of play—Bad Ball–least suited to his often awkward 6-7 abilities. Whether Brannen Greene sees an increase in PT this season depends on whether Self signs an immediately credible big man—Thon Maker seems the only shot now that Zimmerman has written Self off. If Self has to make do again with last year’s big men, plus at least one-year-away Carlton Bragg, Self cannot indulge in Greene full time. Greene’s future next season distills to an algorithm. If Thon Maker signs, then Greene equals starting corner shooting forward, else spot duty.

    OPTION 4: TO BE ANNOUNCED OAD—Not gonna happen, unless Oubre jumps. Probably not gonna happen even if he does jump. There just is no evidence at this point that an adidas-agent complex truck is scheduled to back up to AFH at the last minute and dump 5 OADs on Self’s doorstep Nike-UK and Nike-Duke style.

    OPTION 5: PERRY ELLIS—This season proved Perry Ellis most certainly could have been a 3 his entire career and been a better 3 than he has been a 4. But…Self is on record saying that stretch 4s are the toughest players to guard in college basketball, when they rarely occur. Thomas Robinson was the brute force version of a stretch 4. Perry with his 40% trey, good driving, high mobility, and ability to guard most 4s, is the finesse version. Perry is now feasible as a stretch 4, or a long 3—a Michael Kidd-Gilchrist kind of 3—a Brandon Rush kind of 3, without the silkiness of either. But unless Self has a line on an OAD stretch 4, Perry stays where he is.

    Conclusion: Oubre if he stays. Selden if recruiting seriously flames out and Self commits to a repackaging a junior season for Wayne as a 3. Greene if Thon Maker signs. And unannounced OAD 3 if hell freezes over. Perry at the 3, if a record snow falls in hell and an OAD stretch 4 were signed.

  • @jaybate-1.0 said:

    We live in the age of Self recruiting OADs.

    I was just reading a book this morning that described Ol Roy’s frustration with the whole recruiting process. I didn’t realize (because I am very naive) that even back then many players were looking at college ball as a one or two year stepping stone path to the pros.

    Then came Raef LaFrentz. That changed it all for Roy. and Kirk Hinrich and Nick Collison. Three sons of coaches. From the midwest. Four year players who re-wrote the record books at KU. And won a whole lot of games for us. Any one (or all three) of those will be greater Jayhawks in my mind than any OAD we will ever have.

    In my humble, but accurate, opinion, Self needs to recruit players with at least as much heart as athletic ability and recruit players who will actually PLAY rather than seemingly hold back so they don’t injure themselves and obstruct their pro career.

    OK - I’ll go back to sleep now.

  • Link to a bracket by University Daily Kansas called FACE OF THE STREAK. Will be curious to see who are FF (Rio, TRob, EJ & Sherron??) and who wins it all:



  • @jaybate-1.0

    What about Svi??

  • @BeddieKU23 Agreed. I think Svi plays into the “shooting forward” spot. He could play the 2 or the 3. Due to his age I think he could improve more than anyone in the offseason. He has the height and the touch. Just needs to bulk up a bit and get some confidence. Svi is a stud.

  • @jaybate-1.0

    I love Wayne. But if he tries to jump to the league now, he’ll be the “Bride of Frankenstein.” You know… those women who just want to marry anyone quickly before the groom realizes what he has done. The league simply doesn’t except players who are a head case unless they play like Jordan. Wayne doesn’t play like Jordan. Here is what the NBA thinks of guys who can’t escape their own minds:


    It’s THEIR WAY or the HIGHWAY… and their low tolerance of head cases not only keeps the herd cleansed but also has done more good than any Sigmund Freud… It’s “SHAPE UP OR SHIP OUT!”

  • Here’s a story Kelly Oubre (and Wayne) should read:

    NBA’s D-League a study in humility, perseverance

    He should be scared of ending up here. Let’s see… play another year in Lawrence and still be on everyone’s radar screen while developing game? Or vanish into obscurity in D-league, holding onto dreams of one day accomplishing a $29,000 pay check for a 10-day contract in the league?

    The highest paid salary in D-league is a whopping $25,000 for a 50-game season. You can make more money flipping burgers at McDonald’s.

    These kids sure don’t seem to mind throwing the dice.

  • @joeloveshawks I think Svi has bulked up quite a bit since he got here.

  • @BeddieKU23

    Svi could play the 3, if Malik and Kelly weren’t going to be here.

    Svi could also play 4, if Perry weren’t around.

    Svi could also play 2, or 1.

    He is like modeling clay waiting to be formed.

    Svi’s only limit is his feet and what Self already has at other positions.

    Svi’s feet could not get over screens even late, but he almost could late. If a year of maturing and agility training enable him to guard a point guard’s first step, he could be a helluva PG. But Self appears to have Frank, Devonte and Malik that could play PG. And I read where Malik wants to play PG at least part of the time. Inference: not PG if Mason heals, devonte stays, and Malik comes.

    Self has Wayne and Malik and Svi at 2. If Malik comes he is the 2, when not the 1. If Malik does not show, then it’s Wayne and Svi with some Devonte against short 2s. But if Svi can guard over a screen, and regain his touch, Wayne is in trouble.

    At 3, if Self has Oubre, as I suspect he will, Svi and Greene could backup 3, but Self will look at the 2 and say can Wayne become consistent now or not? Can Svi learn to do what Wayne does-- defend–plus shoot and drive and pass like Svi, or can Wayne learn to shoot, drive and pass like Svi. I think Svi will learn to play defense before Wayne learns to do what Svi can.

    And if Thon Maker comes, and Oubre jumps, greene might become the corner shooting three needed for a footer and Svi’s shot and entry passing for Maker rule at the 2.

  • @jaybate-1.0

    Svi looks like has that touch that Greene has, fearless shooter with range but if I’m him, I’m putting up shots everyday all day improving. Even as a Soph, he’s the equivalent of a Freshman to the rest of the world. It’s crazy he started games last year basically off the plane from Ukraine. What does suck is that he can’t play in Korea which would benefit him the most. You at least hope he progresses to the point where he can get 15 minutes a game every game. That’s the only way we will know if he’s got the potential everyone says he does.

  • @jaybate-1.0 You seem fairly certain Malik is coming to The University of Kansas. What makes you think this? Is it just a hunch or do you know something we don’t?

    Either way thanks for the entertaining read. I enjoy your positive basketball posts, I find it to be a breath of fresh air following all the hand wringing and Self doubt. I know you really enjoy the Shoe Co. conspiracy thing, but I enjoy your more on the court posts the best.

  • @drgnslayr

    I don’t see Wayne jumping. I see him cutting back to a defensive specialist backing up the 2 and 3, unless he starts very strong, consistent, and efficient from the beginning.

    The guys we have to worry most about are Frank and Devonte. Frank really looked degraded at the end. Significant leg issues on bob legs–Can he get his pop back?

    If Malik comes, he has to play at least 20 mpg.

    Devonte can transfer and start most places. Will he take a cut in PT for a year with the risk of more OADs later, or will he transfer?

  • @jaybate-1.0

    It is hard to really assess Wayne’s ability to make it at the next level. We all got frustrated when he tried to do too much with his drives and lose the ball. But didn’t Wigs do the same thing? Remember how he couldn’t hold onto the ball on his drives? It looked like he was trying to run with a greased pig.

    Wayne doesn’t have the athleticism of Wigs… but he does have the right body. He may end up pulling a minor version of what Wigs has done this year when he does get his shot.

    I still think it would be a major mistake for him to leave. Total gamble. Too much gamble.

    “Devonte can transfer and start most places. Will he take a cut in PT for a year with the risk of more OADs later, or will he transfer?”

    If Devonte wants to leave, I know a coach that will jump through hoops to get him to his school… RAT FACE! Coach K has a high hard one for Devonte!

  • @jaybate-1.0 Tell me if I’m wrong, but to me it seems as Self picks a couple of guys that he sees the highest ceilling or the highest ceiling for the team with them playing well. Then he plays them through thick and thin. Examples would be Selden, Wiggins, EJ, and Tyshawn.

    I feel as though Bill has identified the players that he thinks can cary the team the farthest in march and rides them all season long. What I don’t know is how playing certain players 35 minutes and giving the rest of the team the quick hook works. Why would one guy be allowed to play through mistakes and not the rest of the team. Is the quick hook a good teaching tool or not? If it is it should be used on everyone. If it could be seen as something that could hurt the one players confidence then why wouldn’t it hurt the rest of the teams confidence?

    So if a quick hook isn’t the answer and more minutes are then I hope Bill can quickly cut his rotation down to 8 players next season. I’m not sold either way.

  • @dylans For what it’s worth, 247, which aggregates 42 different signing predictions, gives only a 12% chance to KU of getting Newman - behind UK, Miss. St. and LSU. @jaybate-1.0 If Selden wants to become a defensive specialist, he needs to dramatically improve his defense, esp. footwork and positioning.

  • @drgnslayr


  • @dylans is there anything a player might do or not do that you would pull him?

  • @jaybate-1.0 Why would you think Devonte would transfer? Wouldn’t surprise me if he is our best 2-way player next year - and, if he stays all 4 years, I would attach a high probability to him being 1st team all-B12 his senior year - and one of the best PGs at KU.

  • @jaybate-1.0

    Actually… I kind of think that the biggest negative event that hurt Kansas basketball this year was Devonte’s toe injury.

    Perhaps… if he had stayed healthy all year… he may have led us into March. He would have definitely received a bunch of extra minutes in the year, and maybe that would be enough to earn him the PG spot over Frank. Frank sharing minutes as backup PG and half the minutes of Wayne.

    I look at Devonte and I see another Tyus Jones… but I think Devonte plays at a more-controlled pace. Yes… he is that good! He may end up being the best steal Self has ever pulled off at Kansas! He is that good!

    I’m not sure what Self is thinking with Newman. Newman is a SG, but he wants to play PG. This guy has OAD written all over him. So we disrupt the apple cart, take Newman. Basically put Frank or Devonte in the “Self deep freeze” and hope we can restore Frank and Devonte a year later? Devonte is a guy who can actually bring us a National Championship in two years… he’ll actually give us two solid years of NC contention, maybe even next year, too. Newman is total “fool’s gold.” I’m not biting that bait.

    Or maybe Self knows something none of us know. Maybe Wayne is gone. If Wayne is gone, then we can keep minutes going for Devonte, Frank and Malik. Problem is… the same problem we’ve had since TT left in 2012… whose team is this? Who is the leader of the team? We going to ice down Devonte’s desire to lead the team for another year? Might that backfire? That kid is eager as all heck to take ownership of this team.

  • @dylans

    We saw how ineffective it was for Cliff.


    I believe your optimism on Graham is warranted, we saw enough good things to project what he can do for us in the future. Would Newman hurt that progress maybe, probably. He’d probably be stuck playing the 16-20 minutes again. Newman would score and he would be gone in a year. Self has been on him for a long time but the longer he doesn’t visit KU the more it becomes apparent he won’t leave the south. Howland is after him, Briscoe & Blakeney are recruiting them to UK & LSU. We are probably on the outside

  • @dylans

    You have it close.

    He has cornerstones that get to play through slumps, injuries and the 1/3 bad biorhythms games. He has building blocks, or glue types that have to play well or he tries others. And he has trim pieces that only get to do what 1 thing he asks of them and are quick hooked for any mistake. It is a caste system that doesn’t change much in a season, except by XTReme injury, or very rare misreading of how fast someone like Embiid develops, or Svi implodes.

    I think since it has won 82% of his games, 11 titles and a ring, it is one way that works. Not the only way.

    Self clearly believes teams can accomplish more than individuals, and that team roles need clear definition to be gotten better at, and young players benefit from avoiding bad habits before contributing substantially.

    It means slower individual starts but stronger and longer builds to team goals.

  • @dylans

    I’ve never agreed with Self’s quick hook. It demoralizes players. Total confidence killer. That is one of Self’s biggest coaching areas I have a problem with.

    Self should leave players in, and he should get off his butt and stand up and coach the team while they are playing. He should verbally rip guys when they screw up out there, but leave them in. In some more extreme cases… coaches will waste a timeout just to rip a player. Amazing how that can really get players to suddenly perform well!

    I think some of Self’s coaching habits are the reason why we never play with enough enthusiasm. You will never hear one of Self’s teams described as “enthusiastic.” Pity… because that is THE key factor for winning in March! Enthusiasm helps lift team’s energy level… helps them overcome slumps… helps them maintain hot shooting… helps defend and fight for 50/50 balls… helps close out games in March!

    When players are worried about getting the hook, they play cautious basketball instead of playing with optimism and enthusiasm!

    Ever wonder why we always look stiff in March?

  • @Crimsonorblue22 I woud yank any player who was playing selfish or out of the offense. I would give the most talented players a long leash for the last 25-30 games. I would give sure fire oad players as much pt as possible to season them. I would have had Naadir Tharpe on the bench more than he was. I would also have less patience with Selden. Unfortunately the long hook on Selden hasn’t worked.

    @DCHawker I think Brown is a more realistic recruit. Here’s an ESPN clip about Brown and his recruiting Hope the experts are right.

    @drgnslayr I think the quick hook is a teaching tool that can be used quite effectively early in the season and every few games once conference starts. I think it gets guys attention. I do think it won’t work with certain players, but Greene is a competetor who’s head is not always in the game. The quick hook is definitely a tool to get his attention. He is one who needs the firm hand. On the other hand the quick hook all but ruined EJ early on. That being said I would’ve sat him in the nut punch game.

  • Cool thread … love speculating on lineups. I assume Oubre is gone.

    I think the three spot is Selden’s job to lose. Self has given Selden so much rope, and it became apparent late in the season that it was perhaps unwarranted. He just flat disappeared. His defense was myth many times, vs. reality. And above all, as @jaybate-1.0 notes, his measurables – rebounds, steals – bordered on horrific. His ball handling, sadly, was just as bad as I harped on in the off season when discussing his worthiness to play the one. Really, it was worse. Does he dribble a basketball around campus, in the elevator, everywhere? If not, he should.

    I admit that I am surprised by the news from Brannen Greene’s dad. I thought he’d transfer. The reality is that Greene is likely the 5th perimeter guy again. His skill set is marginalized here. But his dad realizes, I think, that Self is pushing Greene to be complete player. His dad realizes that his skill set … shooting … will not be diminished even if the attempts aren’t there. Greene has an NBA level skill. Can the rest of his game rise to the level to keep him in the NBA for two or three contracts? Interesting arguments either way.

    There is no way in my mind that Svi stays off the court. If I had to bet, perimeter is Mason at PG, Svi at the 2, and Selden at the 3. Graham first off the bench. Then Greene.

    I don’t want any stinking OADs. Go somewhere else. I want Andrew White back.

    The speculation that Graham could transfer is based on logic. Mason seized the job. Graham will be staring at his backside for two more years. Then, as a senior, he knows that Self could land the next Derrick Rose and Graham would be on the bench. Not likely, but worthy of consideration. But Graham’s role is dead secure. He’s the second best ball handler. When that’s the case, you play at every level.

    If you want ball handling, play Mason, Graham, and Svi on the perimeter. That would be my choice. But I think Self will stick with Selden as a starter. I liked moving him to the bench and trying him off the bench during the season, but that never happened. Selden is Self’s “chosen one.”

    The “play two small guard” thing, it appears, was nothing more than talk to appease the then crowded backcourt that included three small dudes … Mason, Graham, and CF. Much like Self admitted that “playing small” wasn’t a reality after CF transferred.

    If Oube does come back, someone will leave. If Self signs and OAD, someone leaves. Mark it down. We will not go into the season with 6 perimeter guys of that quality. Someone might leave just before the season like CF, after things shake out.

    I’ll take these five guys. We can sign some scrub … er, non-ranked player … to be emergency fodder.

  • @HighEliteMajor You know darn well Coach Self is going to shoot for the moon in recruiting. Right? If players are not in the Self Top 7, they could be shown the door or the bench.

  • @drgnslayr Is it just me or was it really that early on in his career he seemed more like a players’ coach rather than an authoritarian figure and one of the reasons his teams before Kansas as well as early Kansas teams played with more enthusiasm. For some reason it seems like he connected better with the players back then.

    @dylans For what it’s worth (which is absolutely nothing), but one of my son’s friend at school is also friends with Brown (works with the same basketball trainer). He has been adamant that Brown has his eyes set on Kentucky and there is no way he is going to Kansas.

    @HighEliteMajor I agree. As I’ve said before, I really don’t want any OAD perimeter player. Period. If Oubre comes back, that will be a dilemma in itself as someone will have to leave or redshirt or waste a year on the bench. But a second year Oubre would be much better and worth the dilemma than anyone else. We do need a 5 though, and watching Zimmerman during the dunk contest last night had me drooling, but I guess that’s not really a possibility…le sigh.

  • @dylans

    I really don’t know what it will take to straighten out Brannen. I can see that guy wearing a “Question Authority” tshirt on his days off. He seems like an intelligent kid. I think I’d try to find what makes him tick and explore other ways to motivate him. I may have him all wrong and perhaps he just has an attention disorder. Lots of kids have that these days. The thing is… kids are unique of each other, so “one size fits all” discipline doesn’t work. If these college kids can’t understand that it takes different strokes for different folks, then they aren’t ready for prime time. They are supposed to be young adults. Therefore, it shouldn’t be an issue to apply different techniques to different kids.

    I never had a coach that gave the quick hook. My experiences usually involved coaches that seemed more about psychology, or coaches that should have been Marine drill instructors, or one coach that was a minister and could get us all high on his words. After those experiences, I don’t think I could have handled a quick hook guy. It would feel like he isn’t really on my side or doesn’t trust me to give it my all or whatever, or he just doesn’t have the time and energy to talk to me so he just pulls me. I know it always worked for a coach to call timeout just because of my dumb azz, and he’d verbally let me know it loudly. But the last thing he’d do is take me out. He wanted me to go back in and prove myself. I never disappointed after that. The only thing on my mind was the fear that he might call timeout again and really let me have it!

    I don’t like Huggy’s foul language… but I appreciate the guy as a coach. It is said that his players would take a bullet for him. Maybe Bill gives off confusing messages. I noticed he doesn’t always talk much during games. I find that very odd. Most coaches barely have a voice by the end of a game.

    I say all of this… but we do have a successful program. The only missing piece is March Madness (and finding 5s)…


    Very interesting take. Could be right. I need to try to remember back. Not easy for me. I have severe memory issues. I don’t think Bill is the same guy that came to Kansas initially… but then, I’m not the same guy either. He seemed hungrier to win a NC back then. Like he was carrying a chip. I think he needs to carry a chip again. If he doesn’t have one, how is his team supposed to have one? Makes me really appreciate our 2012 team. Those guys really got it done!

  • I have a question for everyone…

    Do you guys believe Greene & Svi will improve this summer to the point where we win more games because of them?

    Do you honestly believe getting a Brown, Newman, or Ingram wouldn’t improve the team, all 3 are offensively gifted players. Whether they are OAD’s is irrelevant to the point I’m trying to make. Would we win more games in 2015-2016 with one of those 3 as opposed to Greene and Svi who we are begging to develop at a rate we’re not certain can happen.

    I see the disdain for getting the Top 10 kids, it seems to be growing by the day.

    Assuming we lose Oubre, how do you replace his Athleticism, defense, 3pt shooting with nothing? How do we get better from subtraction.

  • My top two current concerns: Will Greene’s presence become a distraction? Will Mason’s legs hold up to another 35 minutes of season-long pounding? Peripherally: Does Self KNOW if Alexander is likely to return; and, if not, WHAT A RECRUITING DILEMMA!

  • @BeddieKU23 I do think Svi will improve – and the shots will start falling. I’m not so sure about Greene. I think Greene is what he is.

    I can’t say that one or some of those players wouldn’t improve us. But I can’t say they would. It seems easy to conclude that bringing in highly talented players will necessarily translate to better team results. But that has not been proven to be the case.

    We saw Oubre struggle to even get on the floor much of the time his past season. He had 31 total points in the first 9 games. Not much bang for our OAD buck. His season was marked by wildly inconsistent production. Look at his ppg. One game he plays 19 minutes, 0 points. Then a five game stretch in double figures. Then a four game stretch averaging 7.5 points and no games in double figures. He had games where he was a complete non-factor. The reality is that he was nowhere near as good as I had hoped, or expected. In my humble opinion, I would have rather had Andrew White as our starting three all season, with Oubre going elsewhere. Anyone here think White would have given us better, more consistent numbers over the course of the entire season? I sure do.

    But that doesn’t mean Oubre wasn’t good, per se. He wasn’t as “good” in Self’s system. If he had gone to UK, I expect that he would have been another cog in their machine. But this is Bill Self’s Kansas Jayhawks. The reality is we expect more from freshman than we should … but we should expect a lot from the OAD crowd. Oubre didn’t live up to that.

    All that said, I will take talented experience over the flavor of the month.

    You replace Oubre with a more ready player. Svi should be that. Svi is as good an athlete, he plays solid defense, better on post entry passes (something not to be dismissed in Self’s system) and he’s a better ball handler. Oubre a better rebounder. We’ll see who ends up the the better three point shooter. I’ll be very surprised if Svi isn’t a better total package next season.

    We lose Oubre, but Svi didn’t really play. So it’s like having a new player. But a new player with a year in the system. And a new player that is highly talented. And remember, Svi played ahead of Oubre early because Svi “got it” quicker than Oubre.

    However, check this out on Jaylen Brown – says he is going to an Adidas school.

    @REHawk - I think Self knows Cliff is gone and he’s moving on. I wonder, though, what recruits think or know? I bet it’s common knowledge that Cliff is gone.

    @FarSideHawk – Ok, is the “le sigh” kind of like the “le meow”?

  • @dylans I’m with @drgnslayr - the QH demoralizes and makes most players timid. Call a time out if you HAVE to, chew some butt, point out what went wrong and how to correct it and then let them get back in there and play.

  • @nuleafjhawk

    When you chew out a player and leave him in you are sending the message that you trust in him to get the job done and he is so valuable you are willing to put game focus directly on him. Kids always respond to that. I did.

  • @drgnslayr As you can tell, I agree with you, but the more I think about it, the more I guess it depends on the individual. Some people only respond to being chewed on and some people retreat. I would hope Self knows the difference, but at times it seems like a quick hook really disrupts the flow of the team.

  • @HighEliteMajor

    “The reality is we expect more from freshman than we should … but we should expect a lot from the OAD crowd.”

    We have to expect great things from OADs because we pay opportunity costs every time we take one. They are using up valuable PT and coaching for a season that could be given to a guy who will take the accumulation of PT and coaching and bring it back for up to 3 additional years of payback.

  • @HighEliteMajor

    You make some great points, I surely don’t knock anything your saying because in reality we are all trying to be an extension of Self right now. We are all wondering how to best fit the pieces we have with any future new players, as well as speculating who will improve

    I guess analytically we are trying to predict WARP. Wins above replacement with this whole ordeal with Oubre/Svi/Greene. If Oubre returns miraculously then the growth of Svi & Brannen is likely stunted. If Oubre leaves they effectively have the chance to prove themselves. That’s where my opinion strays. I just get this uneasy feeling that not signing another player that can help day 1 could ultimately hurt us. I feel like we would be lacking a playmaker. Now I have no certainty that any of the 3 (Brown, Newman, Ingram) are instant playmakers but they certainly look to have that mentality to do so. Again I’m just speculating as we all are at this point.

    I think Self doesn’t trust any of his players beyond Mason & Ellis. Maybe Selden because he seems to have the longest leash in Self history but the fact that he’s recruiting his position says something.

    Great discussion though and one to monitor in the weeks as the domino’s fall

  • @drgnslayr I’m not a huge fan of the quick hook either, but I’ve got to admit to yelling at the TV to pull Greene (and others mainly freshmen) several times. His head just isn’t in the game all the time.

    I’m not sure what Self’s thinking is other than to get their head straight and to do it while on the bench. That way when their number is called again they are thr0ugh the sulking phase of being called out and ready to play right. Not over aggressive trying to make up for a mistake. Not sulking and hating on coach. Ready to play.

    I don’t know that this is the right way with most players, but it definitely works for some. Would I do it that way; not unless players forced me to, not as liberally as Bill does.

    ++edit++ I do know what Bill is doing winning the game. That is all.

    You can be critical that that doesn’t have an eye on the future by going all out tonight. However, that is the nature of the 6 NCAA tourney games.

    I’m not sure if I want guys like Naadir who were always looking over their shoulder or the Twins who were so confident that they overlooked and lost to VCU. What I truly want is a confident team executing the system (like '08).

    I’m sick of ISO plays and dribbling to create shots. You loose (on average) 10% off your shooting percentage when you dribble first.

  • @HighEliteMajor Interesting re Brown. If you take him at his word, then that would likely mean UCLA or KU. 247’s prediction composite has UCLA at 42%, KU just 6%.

    First time I’ve ever heard a kid so publicly state that it’s primarily a Shoe Co decision. Really sad, but I guess that is the recruiting reality these days.

    Perhaps it warrants a new thread and extended discussion, but is there anyone out there that really wants to play for Kansas or play for Self anymore??? We used to get those kids, and they bled KU. Gym rats. Maybe 4 stars, instead of 5, but with a high BBall IQ. Why can Duke get early commits from 5 stars like Jeter and Kennard, but the guys we’re hard after seem to wait to see how it plays out at UK first?

  • @DCHawker “but is there anyone out there that really wants to play for Kansas or play for Self anymore??? We used to get those kids, and they bled KU.”

    My guess is that they don’t want to hear they’re going to have to ride the pines until they figure out the hi-low system. Or the globetrotter shuffle. They want to run and gun and play deep into March.

  • @DCHawker I almost didn’t post the link … it would just provoke @jaybate-1.0 more. What do these kids get from the shoe companies that inspire such loyalty? Hmmmm.

  • @HighEliteMajor


  • @dylans

    “You loose (on average) 10% off your shooting percentage when you dribble first.”

    Maybe even higher! Brannen can’t shoot a lick off the dribble. Problem there was structure. Our offense was all about feeding the ball into the post or driving it into the post and then not feeding back out. Half way through the season our goal became “get our shots in close.”

    So we didn’t run offense to feed the post, draw in the defenders, then feed for an open 3. It looks so simple, but that all has to be choreographed with timing and proper spacing.

    I wonder what Brannen’s attitude would be like if we actually built and ran real offense to feed his spot up shooting? Might he be more responsive on both sides of the ball? I’m thinking he would treat his PT as more valuable if he was averaging 12 ppg.

    I wonder if he feels a bit disrespected. We didn’t value his shooting ability. We didn’t. We traded it for some marginal interior (and inferior) scoring. Didn’t that play in his head? It would mine.

  • @drgnslayr What is Brannen’s attitude? Good question. We get a glimpse into his father’s attitude:

    “It’s a tough situation,” Jeffrey Greene said. “You got to fight for everything you want, but who wouldn’t want that for their kid? This process has made him stronger, it’s made him into a young man."

    Does his own father disrespect Brannen’s ability?

    His dad recognizes that if Brannen can’t get minutes while competing in college how in the world will he compete later. That is one thing that many young men whose reasoning powers are not yet fully developed seem to forget. All of these kids state that their lifelong dream (and not a very long life yet) is to play in the NBA. Believe me it is not the lifelong dream of any coaches and gms that X will play in the league.

    Competition is the name of the game in the NBA or any other part of life. If a kid demands a certain amount of pt and it is granted it will most likely that this will be his last demand playing hoops. I’m sure that most OADs think that they are the best at their position or any other position. They will learn soon enough that that is not the case. Any coach that guarantees playing time is building a nice bomb for his team. What are the other players going to think if someone demonstrates in practice that they do not deserve the promised pt?

  • @sfbahawk

    Really nice post. I agree.

    I think, ultimately, the strings from Brannen run to his father. It is hard to guess if he and his dad are totally on the same page. Hope so. His dad sounds solid!

    Maybe his dad doesn’t respect his defense yet? Or his overall hustle. Hard for anyone not to respect his spot up shot. But we all know (as does his dad) that it takes more than just being a spot up shooter to earn PT. Especially at the next level.

  • @drgnslayr and @sfbahawk

    Brannen will be back, no doubt about it.


    Because he and his dad understand that the minute that an elite post man surfaces at KU, Brannen will be a 20-30 minute man shooting tons of open look treys at 46% and be propelled into the NBA either after next season, or the following one.

    The only reason for Brannen to leave would be if no elite big man shows and an OAD or two on the perimeter sign.

    Elite post men are complemented by great corner shooters. Brannen is a great corner shooter. Brannen was supposed to have played a ton this past season, because Embiid was supposed to have been here, or Self was supposed to have landed an elite big man. KU is the place to come to develop your defense to go along with whatever NBA level skill you possess. Brannen’s NBA skill is his trey fired from a 6-7 platform. With the proper defensive skills, Brannen is adapted to the NBA, or to the Euro leagues, not if not.

    But Self can’t play him a ton in a drive ball offense with no bigs to collapse the defense.

    So, Mr. Greene said exactly the right thing: hell yeah Brannen is coming back.

    Brannen can always bail out over the summer, if no elite big man shows up.

    And as some recent links suggest, KU is not out of the hunt for Zimmerman.

    With Self and recruiting, it ain’t over till its over.

    And with adidas apparently starting to flex its muscles a bit, the fat lady is doing a few more voice exercises right now before she sings.

    Its apparently going to get rather more interesting than it appeared for awhile.

  • @jaybate-1.0 “Brannen can always bail out over the summer if no elite big man shows up.” Or, with Oubre now gone, if Self recruits a TopTier OAD at the 3.

  • @REHawk if I’m BG, I’m looking in the mirror and figuring out I need to work my butt off and then some!

  • @REHawk

    Ah, yes, but is Oubre really going to jump?

    I am not yet convinced of that, unless he has announced and I have missed it.

  • @drgnslayr I see Devonte taking over the team at some point. I think we saw that against Wichita St. I don’t think Newman comes to KU.

  • @jaybate-1.0 Gone, gone, gone. Today, he announced…and Self responded.

  • If I were Kelly, I would be very concerned about my draft number. Looks as though he could easily slip out of this June’s lottery.

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