Free Diallo?

  • Here we go again. This article raises questions we’re all used to discussing, but it’s interesting to see it from a national perspective.

  • Can’t help feeling that Coach Self has painted himself into a corner with this one. Can you visualize a scenario where the way he utilizes Diallo becomes a positive this season for KU’s national reputation?

    Maybe if Diallo comes on like gangbusters and KU makes the final four…seems like anything less is going to bite us in the recruiting butt hard.

  • I may take quite a bit of heat for this but is Diallo really that good? Just pretend for a minute that you have no idea that he is a top 10 recruit. Like all of us I love that we have him and I hope the light goes on or the game slows down or he learns to play without fouling…whatever cliche you prefer. But seriously, does he really past the eye test as a stud D1 player? He was just getting abused down low at WVU on D and is a liability for the most part on offense. Personally I’m far more confused about Braggs lack of minutes than Diallo’s. To me he and Skal at UK were way over ranked and need another year if school without a doubt.

  • @joeloveshawks I tend to agree with you.

    I have never seen any of Diallos highschool game tape but guessing his length and quickness let him take over games against smaller and slower players.

    I know he was the MVP at the McDAA game. But no one plays D in that game and it really is who can run the floor the best to get easy baskets.

    If he can play a stretch of mins 3-5 without fouling I’m all for him playing more.

    He also needs to be able to get low so his center of gravity is lower and makes him just a little harder to push around on the block.

    Maybe Self is just holding him back during the first round of conference play and will unleash him for the second times we play teams so we are different from the game tape?

  • @joeloveshawks Great question. I actually was in process of a thread on this topic a bit ago, got distracted, and just saved it to finish later. I’ll scrap it. You were much more efficient with your pointed question.

    I think all the stuff about Diallo being “raw” is a baloney – not that he’s not raw, but the idea that he is “too” raw to function.

    My believe is that it’s very hard to see the full shine of the brass before you polish it a bit. Diallo needs real game minutes (if there is anyone that does, it’s him). I think we have seen glimpses. Look at the video on the link, the second one where he catches it in the post and scores – have you seen anyone else do that for Kansas this season?

    It’s there. I truly believe that if he was just allowed to play for a good stretch of games, good blocks of playing time, it would be a much different discussion.

    How can a kid go from McDonald’s AA and highly sought after by everyone, and not be that good? I said everyone – Duke and UNC did not recruit him, fyi.

    But I posed the question when Diallo’s status was pending as to whether Diallo was really a main target, or if Self closed the deal with Diallo because better choices for our system (back to the basket guys) fell off the board – Simmons, Rabb, Zimmerman, etc. The response seemed pretty solid that most felt that Diallo had been a Self priority. I don’t know.

    My issue for a possible thread was: If Diallo, as a presumed OAD isn’t good enough to play now for coach Self, did Self make a mistake in recruiting him in the first place? I mean why recruit the guy in the first place?

    I keep going back to Tyler Davis. I was mildly upset when he jumped to Texas A&M (Bragg was my #1 dude); but now, sick to my stomach. He was/is a plug in starter. Whatever.

    Jason King had tweeted recently that he believes Diallo is gone after one season. Diallo has said maximum two seasons.

    This could either be a disaster; or, the situation could transform itself quite quickly and be a complete success. But only one man controls that.

  • @joeloveshawks I don’t follow Kentucky at all, but aren’t they saying the same things about Skal?

    If you look at the drafts from the days when you didn’t have to attend college to get drafted, there’s a list of kids who never played college, got drafted, and never played a minute.

  • @joeloveshawks I agree w/you. Another question, if he went elsewhere would he even be eligible? Would other schools and coach gone to the extreme to fight for him. I’m hoping he’s moving in the right direction. I think of TRobs 1st year, I loved watching him play then, I kept wanting him to play more because he was so passionate. Hoping diallo gets there quickly!

  • I’d like to see more Vick.

    He could spell Mason and or Graham here and there.

    I’m guessing here but would think he is a better ball handler than either Greene or Svi.

    Ten again if him and Graham were on the floor at the same time the tv announcers wouldn’t know who was who.

  • @JRyman we haven’t seen enough of him to tell if he could handle pressure. He’s got crazy arms! He’s going to be a good one, I think.

  • @Crimsonorblue22 Hard to think he could ride the bench next year as well behind Mason and Graham.

    Sore Wayne and Svi could be gone but he’s not a 3 as much a 1 or 2 in Selfs system.

    Hopefully this TCU game affords us a big enough lead that the young guys get a chance to play a lot of minutes and show what they got and can do.

  • But will Bolden really choose Lawrence after seeing what happened to Alexander and now Diallo? When the NCAA was forcing Diallo to sit out, #FreeDiallo became a rallying cry for Kansas fans. It was held up on signs at every game and was all over social media. Now it’s not the NCAA keeping Diallo out of games, but his own head coach.

    The above statements from the article sums up the situation pretty well.

  • @AsadZ he lost games due to the ncaa findings! That’s huge! If you were coach would you promise playing time w/out any stipulations?

  • @Crimsonorblue22 That was late in the season, even before the NCAA findings Cliff was riding the bench in most games.

  • @AsadZ I meant diallo this year.

  • Cliff had plenty of chances last year. He was playing 15-20 minutes per game by the time conference play started. He peaked in the two early home games against OU (13/13 in 23 minutes) and Texas (15/9 in 27 minutes).

    Steady decline to worthlessness after that.

  • @AsadZ The perception is he was riding the bench, the reality is Cliff’s minutes dropped some, but not as much as we think it did.

    Since we’re talking about Cliff he did appear to be competent on the court. I think we all agree that we haven’t seen that from Cheick.

    Another thing I noticed on the Sports Reference game log. Our record last year was nearly the same last year at this point in the season. 2 losses, a bunch of wins. The nature of the losses last year were quite a bit different, but last year at this time we were guardedly optimistic. After 1/13/2015 we went 7-5 while Cliff was playing, and then the March flameout which is too depressing to even figure out what happened after that.

  • It took Oubre about 9 games last year to figure it out. He did some major pine time early on. It took Cliff a while too, and he did eventually seem like he was going to blossom until the sh*t hit the fan.

    Diallo is only at game 11, so he’s not that far behind Oubre or Cliff on the timeline.

  • @AsadZ

    I don’t expect Bolden to land at KU especially if Diallo does the smart thing and comes back to school.

    I mean its almost career suicide at this point when your playing 5 minutes a game to leave and expect to be drafted.

    The new rule with the draft that just passed, pushing back the date for declaring and staying in the draft is now into May. We’re likely going to see him test the waters at the very least, I severely doubt he’ll just say he’s coming back without dragging it on.

    And who knows if Bolden is going to wait it out for who has a starting spot open for him. Some say its now UK, some say its always been Duke. Neither has any guaranteed playing time for him at the moment.

  • @BeddieKU23 do you think the new rules will be tougher on recruiting? Coaches have to wait and see what players will decide?

  • @BeddieKU23 said:

    The new rule with the draft that just passed, pushing back the date for declaring and staying in the draft is now into May. We’re likely going to see him test the waters at the very least, I severely doubt he’ll just say he’s coming back without dragging it on.

    Excellent point. Here is an NCAA tweet that sums it up:

    Students can also enter NBA draft multiple times without jeopardizing eligibility & participate in combine & 1 tryout per NBA team per year.

    Every player who is invited to the combine should go every year. It just makes too much sense to work with pros, establish contacts and get experience with tryouts - even if you plan to come back to school.

    Recruits and coaches are just going to live with less certainty.

  • @HighEliteMajor

    Good point about Diallo and the Raw label. Most of it was surrounded around his offense, but I’d take his offense any day over Lucas and Jamari. He’s definitely still raw but its more about him reacting and being where he needs to be, and his pension for hacking everything.

    But he needs a lot of game time and he’s not getting it, and he’s likely not going to get it. Dare we say that the best thing that could happen to our mess in the front-court is an injury that gives him a chance to play. Obviously we can’t afford Perry to be gone but we know who we could afford to be without.

    I thought he played well against West Virginia, I actually think he’s played well the past 4 games but he’s only getting 1-2 minutes to prove anything before he’s sleeping on the bench again. What’s the point in playing him so little minutes? Your not maximizing his talents this way.

    Its really discouraging to see him sit so much knowing what kind of talent he was before he got here. I’ve tried to keep an open mind for the sake of things but I think I’m really starting to lose sight of that especially after Tuesday’s debacle with our post players.

  • @Crimsonorblue22

    Yes its going to hurt a lot of teams. But the rules do give players better decisions to make and more opportunities to get the best information out there.

    It’s going to potentially be a pain in the butt if we have 3-4 guys in Limbo and we get into this trend where we have open spots and guys waiting on who leaves and stays who we are depending on. For example. Bragg & Diallo have mocks at the end of the 1st round. Or Selden which is being mocked in the 2nd, same with Svi. Those 4 could all test the waters and hope they get good info or have good workouts. Meanwhile they don’t have to decide until a much later date now, and potential recruits that might have been waiting on KU’s guys now have gone somewhere else where teams don’t have that issue. Which is why getting your recruiting done early is important.

  • @BeddieKU23 said:

    Tuesday’s debacle with our post players.

    LOL. How bad do the perimeter players have to play to be responsible for a debacle?

  • @BeddieKU23 don’t you think more recruits will sign late due to these new rules? It won’t just be KU!

  • @DanR

    I’ve already spent enough time explaining how poorly Mason played. He was the ring leader of piss poor play Tuesday. Selden doesn’t get a pass for his TO’s either. We are living and dying by our guards.

    But if we are going to get a total of 4 points in 26 minutes as was the case Tuesday from 2 certain individuals we are going to have some long nights like Tuesday.

  • @Crimsonorblue22

    That very well could happen, that the ones who choose to wait until spring will wait even longer. Would make sense if their decision was contingent on certain programs NBA prospects.

    The one major issue is the Spring Signing Period which runs from April until May 18th this yr. The date to withdraw will now be May 25 which is a full week after the signing period ends. So kids potentially miss out on scholarships by not signing early enough

  • @BeddieKU23 headache!

  • @Crimsonorblue22

    That’s what happens when the end of the season and the NBA draft are close enough to make it a headache. Unlike Football which eliminates that doubt by having underclassmen declare in January and then the draft isn’t for another 5 months… I don’t think there will ever be the perfect model other than forcing kids to stay longer or give the direct to league option.

  • From Fran Fraschilla today. Former coach. Has attended Kansas practices. Obviously has done Kansas games.

    “When you watch KU play hi-low O, notice how many teams slough off other “big” to double team Ellis in low post. Major fly in KU ointment.”

    “Haven’t talked with Bill Self about this but I expect to see more of Carlton Bragg soon. Best combo of O & D among bigs next to Perry Ellis.”

    Good info. But he’s not telling us anything we don’t already know.

  • @HighEliteMajor Wish I could upvote your comment like 100 times instead of just once.

  • Kinda like we do and many other teams do the same. That Fran… He’s brilliant.

  • @HighEliteMajor

    Assuming Fraschilla is actually correct, and its an assumption worth reflecting on, the key questions are these:

    Why isn’t Perry passing out of the double on the low block to a wide open Lucas, or Traylor, or Mickelson, or Bragg, or Diallo every goddamned play? What is the problem here? Each one of these C5 guys has proven they have the ability to dunk it rather effortlessly this season, when they have a one step jump, which they should have with Perry passing out of a double? Every one of the C5 players should be doing it every time down the floor, but they are not. Again, each one of the C5 has the athleticism and strength necessary to dunk when open. If Fran is right, then why aren’t they? Coach Self, why not?

    Next, what the hell is a 3 that is shooting 57% from trey and that is playing stretch 4 against guys way bigger than him, doing on the low block being doubled, at all? Why isn’t Perry outside shooting the lights out, or else forcing double teams outside, and so feeding each our C5 5s that can stand uncontested and dunk? Coach Self, why not?

    My hunch is that things are more complicated than most of our C5s not being able to pot the triceratop, but its worth asking.

    Carlton Bragg is now 2-4 from trey.

    Good lord. Does this mean we are going to keep our small big in on the low block and our long big out 19 feet out?

    Is this who we are?

  • @jaybate-1.0 I’ve wondered that as well. Even though Perry has a ton of post moves on the block why isn’t he playing the high inbthebhigj low?

    He can take his man off the dribble, can shoot outside, better passer, one would think he would be at 17 ft looking inward instead of being on the block waiting for the double team to come.

  • @jaybate-1.0 Fully agree on Perry. He has been a stud this year but he could probably be putting up over 20 a game if he shot more 3’s and more jumpers. Perry has to hold the all time KU record for shots blocked. Admirable as he keeps trying but sometimes it is sort of frustrating to see when I know he is a very talented shooter.

  • @joeloveshawks perry has been catching the ball very hi, I think he’s gaining more confidence out there too. His man is laying off out there too, shoot it perry!

  • @KansasComet mentioned fouls in another thread, and intend to agree. At the end of the game they called contact WAAY too readily on KU.

    Still, I agree with Jaybate that our passing was simply too lazy and our D too soft. The usual culprits plus practically the whole team regressed.

    Really needed Bragg and Diallo this game, but they’re just not there yet. My only major criticism is that Self should have played Vick after the 10 minute mark in the second half. If we do not develop him enough by March, we will regret it because we NEED someone to spell Frank and Devonte defensively.

  • Banned


    Ya I don’t see where the drop off is when putting in Diallo over Lucas and Traylor? I just don’t really see what Lucas and Traylor do that Diallo can’t do. Yea Diallo is raw but man his upside is way higher than Traylor and Lucas combined. When Diallo steps on the court the opposing team has take notice.

    The Ironic point in all this? Is the posters that believe Diallo shouldn’t play will be the ones wondering why KU isn’t getting any star studded players next year.

  • @DoubleDD the question then becomes how long can he stay on the floor without fouling out?

    Yes his offensive upside is greater but his liability on D and his inability to stay out of foul trouble will put his butt on the bench.

    That’s my opinion over hat I’ve seen him play.

  • Banned


    Yea that is the danger with Diallo or even Bragg. Yet only playing Diallo spot minutes isn’t the answer either. I’m not really calling for Diallo to start but I would like to see some more playing time for him. Maybe in the 15 mins a game range?

  • @DoubleDD I am hopeful that this Saturday’s game at home will allow KU some freedom to play the younger guys more minutes.

    It’s two fold. Get them game experience. Plus it can give the others some rest that is well needed too.

  • @betterfireE A 6’5" guard with a high motor outdoor would definitely come in hand in March. I think he is going to be an excellent ball player.

  • We need a big that can knock down a 15-18 footer. That would eliminate the double team on Ellis. Bragg seems to be the best fit to fill that role in my opinion.

  • Diallo is getting better each game. It is just a matter of time before he figures it out, and when he does, watch out!

  • @wissoxfan83

    Skal is already off the list on a couple of mock drafts. At this point I would have to think he is coming back for at least one year.

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