Quality Control

  • Every year KU men’s basketball wins the BIG12. The whole 2nd ball handler debate got me thinking? How much does minimizing the roster turnover effect who starts? Svi is projected to be taken with the 15th pick of the 2017 draft. Selden, Ellis and Diallo are the only KU guys projected in the 2016 draft. IF HCBS starts Svi and Svi is successful next season he could be the 4th Jayhawk to put their name in the NBA hat. Mix in the graduates and you have Traylor, Manning, and Mickelson. At a minimum KU looses 6 guys next season. Neither Mason or Graham are on the draft boards and neither were top ranked guys coming out of high school. Its safe to say that HCBS can start Mason, Graham, and Selden and loose only the guys projected to go due to graduation and NBA draft. Greene, Vick, and Svi are projected in the 2017 draft but Svi being the only one in the top of the first round. Even if Svi is a better option at the 2 why would HCBS start him and jeopardize loosing a 7th guy this year? Less turn over equals a better product for the 2016-2017 season and possibly another BIG12 championship. I sure hope HCBS is out there bustin his butt recruiting to fill all scholarship’s.

  • @Statmachine Manning is completely irrelevant to any discussion about future rosters because he’s a walk on. If Selden is only projected a mid 2nd round pick, he’ll stay for his senior year. KU will lose 4 front court players (Diallo, Ellis, Mickelson, and Traylor) and Self knows this and is planning on this in recruiting which is why he was targeting a transfer big with that final scholarship this year. Self needs a ready to play big that’s capable of challenging Lucas for the other starting spot along side Bragg. He needs a ready to contribute big that can play back up minutes if Coleby doesn’t pan out and a guy that’s a year away from being a contributor/starter. The 4th scholarship needs to be a wing player even if KU returns everyone in the back court because if that happens, it’s possible Graham and Vick would be the only guards in 2017. After the 2016-17 season, it’s very likely KU only has 2 maybe up to 4 players currently on the roster at that point (Vick, Coleby, and maybe Svi and Bragg).

    These next 2 classes for Self are going to be huge because they are each likely to have at least 5 players in them as the roster turns over almost completely.

  • Banned

    You know I used fret over recruiting. I don’t even bat an eye these days. It’s not to say I don’t love the discussion or topic of recruiting, because I do. Recruiting is almost like a soap opera. You can go on vacation or go hide in your basement for a month thinking the world is going to end. Yet when you get back from vacation or climb out the basement to get more supplies. You realize nothing has changed. These kids are recruited so hard from such a young age, It’s almost in the bag as to where these kids will go. Hell I’m not even sure these kids really get to pick the school they want to go to. I mean think about it, what kid comes out of High School with a list of 15 schools they would like to attend? Really?

    Future rosters is another great topic and subject that needs to be looked at and discussed. Yet it unlike recruiting has more intrigue and surprise. It seems everybody is an expert on who goes and who stays, especially in this forum. 🙂 I’m surprised that the media outlets and the NBA aren’t just hanging around reading and hiring KU Bucket posters. 😉

    Terms like we will have Bragg back, Selden will stay for another year, Diallo is a OAD, and Vick will never see the court for two years are indeed just opinions. Nobody really knows. All we really know is what the NBA looks for in physical attributes of a player, and the potential of said player. Don’t meet the specs it doesn’t matter how good you are, you’re looking at 4 years in college and if your lucky mid round pick in the draft.

    Now for my opinion. 😘

    Selden becomes the player we all thought he would be. He’s gone

    Diallo has star written all over him, even without great numbers. He’s gone.

    Svi has a break out year. To many people sleeping on this kid yet forgetting he was really just a kid last year and I mean a kid. He could play the NBA or European ball. He’s gone.


    Bragg is not a lock to come back for another year like some would suggest. I’m not saying this kid is gone, but no way would I bet my house that he’s staying either. If KU has a magical run to a title this year and Bragg is a part of it. Look for his stock to rise, and for him to enter the draft.

    Greene is a NBA talent but has big holes in his game. One he doesn’t take the ball to the rack enough, and his defense is suspect. His does rebound, can run, jump, and stroke the jump shot. I think he has enough of the specs the NBA is looking for to get drafted. Again like Bragg if KU has a crazy run to a championship and Greene is major piece to the puzzle. It wouldn’t surprise me if he goes.

    Ok I’m done acting like I know what I’m talking about.

  • @DoubleDD If what you say comes to fruition, then maybe KU gets an “Adidas stack?”

  • I hope Bragg and Svi are around for the 2016-2017 season. I would like a NCAA championship though and IF that happens and the 2 of them were a big part of the equation I would understand and would be approving of their decision to leave early.

  • If Selden continues to play like he has in the WUG, he would not only be drafted, he would be a lottery pick.

  • We will still have a nice nucleus next year even if we lose some early. I seriously doubt Svi will leave after this year but what do I know. If hes a starter he has a chance to show nba potential.

    Mason, Graham, Vick & Greene is still a deep backcourt without Svi. With Svi the top recruits likely look elsewhere. We are after Ferguson, Fox, and Jackson the most. One of those 3 leaves us with an elite guard lineup again. Maybe a transfer point guard or a stash type would be good to get as well. You bring in someone to learn from Mason & Devonte.

    Frontcourt definitely needs an infusion of talent. I just don’t see Bragg as anywhere close to leaving, he just isn’t going to have the role to be drafted that high. He comes back and the PF spot is his. Coleby & Lucas provide depth at the 5. We need one more elite recruit if Diallo does leave. We could also look at a development big like Herard.

    If Svi & Selden go then signing Jackson or Ferguson or both is the priority. If Diallo goes then signing Bolden and at least 1 more elite big who can score will be a must. We may have 5 to 6 spots to give but it’s not necessary to fill them all when we still have great talent left. 2017 is absolutely full of Ku targets maybe the most in a long time so saving some for that class has to be on the coaches mind.

    My one bold prediction so far. KU Will not sign anyone in the fall. All the targets seem set on announcing in the spring. The only kid I could see signing early would be Ferguson.

  • @DoubleDD Where do Bragg’s minutes come from this year? Perry Ellis is playing 30+ mpg this year so where do Bragg’s minutes come from?

    And, what is so much different about Carlton Bragg than Cole Aldrich, the Morris twins, Jeff Withey, Thomas Robinson, and Perry Ellis (all ranked between 20-40 coming out of HS) that Carlton Bragg will be OAD compared to these other 6 players who were all at KU at least 3 years?

  • @Texas-Hawk-10

    Exactly an injury to Ellis is the only way and nobody wants that to happen. Bragg will see enough time to be ready as a sophomore to lead. Carlton and the coaches know that

  • Banned


    Hey by all means bet your house that Bragg will be back for a second year.

  • Banned


    So you’re telling me a talent like Bragg isn’t going to see playing time? OK

  • @DoubleDD talented yes, still inexperienced.

  • @DoubleDD You still have not answered the two questions I’ve asked you multiple times now. You can think my opinion is uninformed and out of the blue all you, but Carlton Bragg is the 7th big man to sign at KU since 2007 that has been ranked between 20-40. Out of those previous 6, only the Morris twins played big minutes as freshmen and that’s because of a lack depth. Cole, Withey, Robinson, and Ellis were all the 4th option at in the rotation as freshmen just like Bragg will be this year in all likelihood. Also, none of those 6 played fewer than 3 years at KU so that’s a pretty good sample size to make reasonably educated predictions about Carlton Bragg and how his career at KU will go.

    So again, where do Carlton Bragg’s minutes come from this year and why is Carlton Bragg so much more special as a freshman than Cole, the Morris twins, Withey, Robinson, and Ellis that Bragg will be OAD when all of the other 6 were at KU for at least 3 years?

  • Banned


    Look dude I have my opinion and you have yours. Neither is right or wrong. In fact if you would actually read my comments you would know that I’ve said, "I think Bragg could be back for a second year but wouldn’t doubt if he was to turn pro after one year. Why you have a problem with this is beyond me ???

    I BELIEVE THIS because I think he has the specs the NBA looks for. He can handle the ball and actually has a nice jump shot. He also doesn’t give up on plays.

    Trying to compare Bragg to Cole, the Morris Twins, TRob is like comparing apples to oranges. I believe, feel, and think that Bragg is more ready to play as a freshman than all those guys. Now I’m not saying Bragg is just better than these guys. I’m just saying he’s ready to play.

    Every year is different as are the new up and coming players. For instance everything I’ve read says the next NBA draft is going be a weak draft for big men. Meaning an average to good big man has a better of chance getting drafted. This alone increases Bragg’s chances of getting drafted.

    It seems you think Bragg won’t even see the court this year, which is mind boggling to me. Yes KU has a lot of bigs but are they great? After Ellis, Diallo, and maybe Hunter who’s better than Bragg? Not to mention the game is changing this next year with the shorter play clock. Also the game has been moving to a big that can take his defender from the paint and shoot the jumper. Bragg has Aces when it comes to this new style of playing the game. He’ll be better than Hunter, Lucas, and Traylor. I believe Before this season is over Bragg will be the first big off the bench. Yes I said it. Do you want me to say it again? Before this season is over I see Bragg as the first big off the bench.

    I’ve explained to you more than once on this topic why I think that Bragg could indeed go OAD. I’m sorry you don’t agree me thoughts, and even consider my thoughts as mere stupidity. However stop saying I haven’t explained to you why I think Bragg can go OAD. I’ve explained more than once. You just don’t agree with me.

    No I don’t think your opinion is uniformed at all. In fact I would say % wise you would have a better chance of being right. However it’s not that I disagree with you it’s just that Bragg seems special to me. The kid has that it factor. I don’t know what it is, but I think if things go the way I think they will. Bragg has a chance of leaving after one year. Sorry if that offends you. 😢

  • If past were prologue, then…

    Diallo and Bragg will definitely be back. Five star and four star bigs with holes in their games tend to take 3-4 seasons. Only athletic freak footers like Embiid go first season.

    Low or unranked < or = 6 foot guards and moderately ranked 6-2 guards that have not started are not jumping early.

    Svi will be back. 17 last season was too green apparently. 18 year olds need two seasons playing tall at the 2, or 3, perimeter positions to get it all together.

    Selden will really have to shoot it well for a season, guard another draft choice well, and avoid injury for a season, or he will be back. Wayne will not be able to play 3 at all in the NBA, so playing well at the 3 in D1 will not be enough to get the GMs juiced. He will have to make a high percentage of treys for a season AND show he can lock down some top talent, else wise he is the back court equivalent of a tweener in front court. If Self gives up on Wayne as a 2, it necessarily makes it much, much tougher for him to make it in the NBA. It appears that he has, though Vick’s arrival makes it so that Self can at last move Wayne around 1, 2, and 3, as he has long wished to do.

    (Note: I believe Self is moving increasingly to thinking that being able to position his two or three best players at several different floor locations and positions is the future of the high low offense. Being able to use his best threats from floor positions, where defenders match up least well is better than any action one can ever design for Mr. Maestro of Impact Play. For the same reason Self DISLIKES zone, he likes being able to have players that can attack either out of several positions, or at least out of several locations depending on the match up. Self hates zones because an opponent always knows where the defenders will be and for the most part who will be there. Zones are too easy to create mismatches against, if you are patient for a few possessions. Similarly, that run with the same guys at the same positions and spots on the floor every time down are easy to adjust your defense to to maximize matchup advantage. Perry got the “show up everywhere on the floor treatment” last season. Wayne seems about to be added to this routine this season. But I digress.)

    Vick is a guy with an NBA blue print, despite the vermicelli legs, if his WUG shooting were to prove not an aberration. But he came out of high school a year early and he will likely need a year of seasoning to handle the strength and speed change to D1. But he is gone the next season, if he avoids injury and develops normally.

    In short, turnover seems less of a crisis to me than to most others above.

  • @DoubleDD

    If your right we better have locked down the elite posts in this recruiting class. Love the optimism towards Bragg but I hope your wrong that he’s gone after 1 year. I don’t believe given the minutes he will receive that its enough to jump.You are right about his NBA potential, he possesses a sweet jump shot that is coveted.

    It is shaping up right now as a weak draft but there are a ton of Freshman bigs that could all be going pro that will impact some kids decisions.

    At the top you got Simmons & Skal. Scouts are sold on them, will take some monumental leap from somebody to pass them. After that you have a scrum of Freshman with potential and some older players. Poeltl from Utah, Hayes from Wisconsin, Jones from Vanderbilt & Bender from Europe are rated pretty high. Freshman like Zimmerman, Stone, Diallo, Ellenson, Rabb, Swanigan, Jeter, Bryant & Devonte Davis were all rated higher or around Bragg and all will basically be in featured roles on their college teams. Bragg is the one situation where he’s stuck behind a possible All-American. A lot will change by the spring when we will know what kind of player Bragg has become to know if leaving is a real option. He seems to be a level headed player with goals of developing within the system.

  • I like the idea of signing at least one more transfer/juco transfer over the next year. We want to try to avoid lumping too many new recruits in any given year. Otherwise, we go back to being “one of the youngest teams in America” and you know what that means?! Early March exit for a couple of years.

  • Banned


    To be honest I hope Bragg comes back for another year. In fact I wish all players had to stay at least two. Even though I prefer 3 years. 😉

    Really it’s all up to Bragg. If he does what HCBS wants. I just don’t see how this kid doesn’t get the minutes. Like I’ve said before with the shorter play clock, I just don’t see how Bragg doesn’t get some minutes. After that it’s all up to him. Like you said in the end will see what the kid has got.

  • Put me in the “Win a National Championship and everyone who’s last name isn’t Self, can go to the NBA!” boat. Although it would be awesome if Tyler went

  • @jaybate-1.0 I agree Jaybate. We had 7 guys leave in 08 and we still won the conference, won more than 30 games, and got to the sweet 16 if Im not mistaken. Turn over comes, turn over goes. The only constant is KU Basketball. Its almost more of a constant that taxes and death.

  • @Lulufulu The 2008-09 team only won 27 games, and they won the Big 12 because they got lucky that Blake Griffin missed that game with a concussion. That was a really young team that returned 1 guy that played big minutes the year before. That season along with the 2011-12 teams are 2 of the 3 best coaching jobs Self has ever done along with the Tulsa Elite 8 team.

  • @Lulufulu

    Almost. 💔

  • @Lulufulu It’s more of a constant than taxes. If we don’t make money we don’t pay taxes. KU will be playing basketball after we are dead. When that happens I hope that KU has a 3 who can take it to the hole.

  • @DoubleDD

    He could be a lottery pick if he grows into his body and defines his game. We saw glimpses of good things in Korea with no idea what he was doing. His hustle stood out, and he rebounded pretty well. His jump-shot wasn’t there but we all saw the good form.

    He’s going to get minutes because if you assume he will take Perry’s spot after this year, then he better play decent minutes so that he’s prepared for the role. The fact is he’s a backup right now, and unless he beats out Diallo to play the 5 (which I’m sure he doesn’t want to do) he’s stuck in a 1st big or 2nd big off the bench role. Nothing wrong with that, it allows him to learn from Vets & not place pressure on himself to be something he’s not right now. If he’s able to carve out more than 10 minutes a game, then he’s doing good things its a crowded front-court.

  • Carlton Bragg could be an OAD. What makes him different from previous guys ranked in the same range, as @Texas-Hawk-10 rightly observes?

    Well lets run down the list.

    1. Skillset

    Carlton Bragg is a 6-9, athletic, face up big man. He could reasonably play either the 3 or the 4 at the next level with his combination of size, strength and athleticism. He is bigger than Marcus Morris was coming out of high school, as well as being more athletic, though I think Morris was slightly more refined as a shooter. Bragg is easily more athletic. He’s probably only surpassed in the athleticism department by TRob (and that’s a close call) but he is more skilled than TRob was at the same point. Cole and Withey were both projects that needed to develop strength as they were not strong enough to play the 5 at the next level when they arrived in college. Bragg can probably handle the 3 or 4 because of his ball handling and shooting ability, so that won’t prevent him from making the leap. His athleticism should allow him to defend guys on the perimeter as well.

    1. Competition.

    When Cole Aldrich arrived on campus as a freshman he was sitting behind 3 guys that would be NBA draft picks in less than 12 months. There was almost no way he was breaking through that group unless he was an absolute superstar on day one.

    When Jeff Withey arrived as a transfer he was sitting behind the previously mentioned lottery pick Aldrich, as well as future lottery picks Marcus and Markieff Morris. As soon as the Morris twins left, Withey became a starter and played his way into the NBA the following year.

    When the Morris twins arrived, they were behind Aldrich, who ultimately became a lottery pick and departed after their sophomore seasons.

    When TRob arrived, he was behind Aldrich and the Morris twins, then just the Morris twins. Once that logjam cleared, he played his way to a top five pick.

    And then Perry Ellis. When he arrived, he was behind Withey and the senior Young.

    Noticing a trend? Each player arrived and was sitting behind at least one player that would be an NBA draft pick within two seasons, usually a guy that would be an NBA pick after that season.

    So, among KU’s returning players, who does anyone see as an NBA pick either next year or the following year? NBAdraft.net has Perry as a late second rounder in the 2016 mock, no KU bigs in the 2017 mock. It is fair to note that Bragg does not currently appear in either mock draft, though Legerald Vick does appear as a second rounder in 2017. Draft Express lists no KU bigs in 2016.

    Suffice it to say that this is the weakest group of returning KU bigs, in terms of NBA potential, since at least 2007. That means Bragg will have lots of chances to play, even if he isn’t particularly productive, because he’s easily more talented than Traylor, Lucas, Mickelson, etc. He’s the fourth option only if he is bad. Otherwise he’s probably third behind Diallo and Ellis, with a chance to play quite a bit.

    1. Potential

    Withey and Aldrich both had ceilings at the next level of shotblocking backups that could give you some limited offense. That’s solid, but nothing that will have an executive falling over themselves for after one year in college.

    Perry is an undersized 4. He may not have any NBA future despite a very productive collegiate career that will probably place him in a very nice place in the KU record books.

    Robinson’s initial ceiling was energy guy off the bench, but he showed that he had more offensive skill than most initially thought.

    The Morris’ were both viewed as tweener players because of their lack of high level athleticism.

    Bragg has the athleticism that the Morris twins did not have. He has the skills that TRob lacked as a freshman. He has the size that Ellis lacks. If he combines that profile with production, he can be an NBA draft pick next season.

    Bottom line is that right now, I would say Bragg is probably 70% stay, 30% go. He would have to come in and produce consistently for most of the year to be a draftee, and that is obviously not guaranteed. However, the possibility is there.

  • @justanotherfan the biggest issue with Bragg is playing time. Unless PE is injured or falls flat on his rear, Bragg may not see much at the 4 & is not strong enough to bang with the 5’s.

  • @justanotherfan

    Bragg needs to add serious strength while he’s here in Lawrence. He was pushed around in Korea, no matter if they were older & stronger those same rules apply in college. He made up for it with hustle and scrappy plays on the floor and his length. I think defensively he’s going to have to prove a lot (can he guard a 4 or 5 straight up). He wasn’t known for his defense in HS and I doubt that changes anytime soon.

    His offensive Skill-Set is advanced, and if he can shoot the ball consistently he’s got a great chance with how the league is shifting to stretch players. Does he have a low post game? He tended to settle for a lot of jumpers in Korea. So far that’s the only data we have to assess what he likes to do at the College Level. The staff will undoubtedly work on post moves with him. His upside is not a question, but how he puts it all together.

    I don’t agree with your competition argument. Diallo could be a OAD top 10 pick after this year. Sounds like stiff competition to me? Ellis will go down in KU History. 3 year starter, possible top 10 scorer, possible All-American, All Big 12 player. He might not be an ideal talent for the NBA but in the College game he’s as effective as they come. He’s a senior, he’s not going to sit no matter the promise Bragg may show from time to time. Sounds to me like competition hasn’t changed a bit here.

    After those 2 you have an emerging Mickelson. Who knows how much stock Self will place on his play. I think it was good enough to earn backup C minutes. If Bragg can play defense, he could earn some of those minutes as well.

    At this point I’d be shocked if Bragg wasn’t the focal point of the 16-17 team.

  • @globaljaybird he does have about 3 months to put on some strength though!! I think it is more up to him and his current mentality. If he sees the opportunity he has to jump to the front of the line, and busts it this offseason, he could slide into some extra minutes for sure. If he is just happy to be here, getting the spot minutes, and taking over the team next season, then that’s what’ll happen. A lot of it is just in his hands.

  • @BeddieKU23 and @globaljaybird

    You both make good points. However, my major point is that Bragg may not even play the 4 in the NBA. He may play the 3. That’s the big difference between Bragg and Ellis. Ellis would be in the NBA right now if he could play on the perimeter. However, because he’s more of an undersized player, he (rightly) returned to college. Ellis is absolutely a 4.

    Bragg has some perimeter skill and appears to be able to defend there if he focuses on it. It would be to his disadvantage at this point to try to tailor his game to the post because his NBA future is likely going to push him more and more to the perimeter. He should not be trying to bang with 4’s and 5’s. He should drag big guys out to the perimeter, face them up and beat them there, while posting smaller guys up.

    When guarding bigger players, he should use his speed and quickness to deny them position and the basketball. If he’s trying to play bully ball, he’s doing it wrong. When guarding smaller guys, then by all means, use his size/ strength advantage.

    Carlton Bragg should be making himself into a 3/4, not a 4/5. This is why I believe he may be able to become an OAD. Like I said, he’s more likely a two year player, but we should not assume he will be back because he has enough skill to make a leap.

  • @justanotherfan

    While Ellis is 4 in college, I personally don’t see him playing that postilion in the NBA. The current 4s in the NBA are what we used to consider Centers and they are considerably taller and bigger than Ellis. If Ellis makes it to the NBA he will have to play the 3 and this is why he is now shooting a lot more 3s than he used to. To make it to the NBA, Ellis will have to overcome the dreaded “tweener” label.

    I understand that Bragg is still growing and there is a chance that by the time he goes to the NBA he is 6’-10 or taller and he would be the perfect “stretch 4,” since he seems to have a good outside shot; I just don’t see him playing the 3 or 5 at the next level.

  • @justanotherfan As always, another very insightful analysis. Your forecast definitely sounds good for his future. But again, I hope he earns enough min to really make a difference in our season with Selden, Greene & Svi likely ahead in the pecking order. & system savvy at the 3. When I see some of his offense moves & skills, I’m reminded immediately of a young Danny. Manning. Some freshmen are clearly ready for the spotlight & some have a tough time at Bill’s Okie ball. My hope is that Bragg excells enough to be a OAD with a National Championship under his belt.

  • @JayHawkFanToo http://www2.ljworld.com/news/2015/jun/27/self-improvement-braggs-priority/

    He said he is 6’10"-6’11" which would be very good! IF he hits 7 feet this year with his handles he could go #1 next year in the draft?

  • @Statmachine I doubt he’d go #1. He has a ways to go.

  • @Statmachine

    Any thing is possible but Bragg going #1 next year is pretty unlikely since he is not even considered a top 30 player in any of the 2016 mock drafts. He would have to make a jump of historic proportions to end up as #1…

    Again, possible? Yes, probable? No.

  • @JayHawkFanToo I used to think that too. However, “stretch 4’s” are in pretty high demand lately in the NBA. Golden State won the title with 2 of them in the starting line up and were outsized by most everyone they played. Perry is a pretty darn good stretch 4. He’ll make a team. I’ll put money on it.

  • @Lulufulu

    Yes, but…can you think of anyone, as far as you can remember, that went from unranked in the pre-season mock drafts to #1? I can’t. I am not saying it is not possible, I am saying it is highly unlikely, considering that he will likely not even start for KU. At this point, I see Bragg as solid 2 year player…but I could be wrong

  • @JayHawkFanToo Oh, dude, I was talking about Perry being a stretch 4 in the NBA. I really dont know enough about Bragg to say with confidence he could be a top pick in 2 years.

  • @Lulufulu

    At this point Perry is really not a “stretch 4” even in college, and if he makes it to the NBA he will play SF and not the stretch 4. Stretch 4s are 6-10 or 6-11 players that can hit consistently from the 3. Perry is just not that kind of player.

Log in to reply