BORED: Starting Line-up Projection Time

  • Graham





    However I feel like Vick could easily surplant Svi by conference play. Maybe sooner. Vick is really good and Svi has defensive limitations.

    I do not see starting 4 guards again but I do expect to see 4 guard looks, with time varying depending on the opp.

  • Football team got any guys with a hoops background that could be a post JAG?

  • I think Vick is going to start. When you look at Graham & Newman you see two very good perimeter shooters but they don’t have that elite athletic ability KU is used to having on the floor at the wing. I think Vick can make athletic plays on both sides of the ball that Svi simply cannot. For that I give him the slight edge. Vick should be one of our best defenders this season which is another reason I would start him.

    Having said that we know both of these guys are going to play a ton of minutes. Especially until Sam I am becomes eligible we have just 5 guards. It might not even matter who starts because at this point each of them is going to play 25-30 minutes a game. Unless Preston is ready to give us a ton of minutes as a stretch 4 and Lightfoot can be counted on in a reserve role I think we see more then our fair share of lineups where we have Graham/Newman/Vick/Svi/Doke on the floor.

    Starting Lineup

    1. Graham, 2. Newman, 3. Vick, 4. Preston, 5. Doke

  • @BeddieKU23 I could see Vick starting right off based on what Self has been saying. Exhibition is too far away. 😞

  • I’ve been tossing this around for a bunch of different ideas.

    You have to start Devonte, obviously. He’s your PG, period.

    Malik is the best scorer on the team (maybe the best pure scorer Self has had in a while). He’s going to be your other combo guard.

    The difficult choice is at the wing spot. You really can’t start both Vick and Svi because you end up too small, but both will play plenty, so it likely doesn’t matter. Self will probably reward seniority and start Svi, but Vick is going to get a ton of run either way because he’s probably the best perimeter defender we have.

    Preston and Doke up front is a no doubter. We don’t have a ton of depth up front, so I can’t see those guys not getting the nod. The challenge will be making sure that we don’t end up shorthanded due to foul trouble, meaning those guys have to be smart with how they play inside. No silly over the back or reaching fouls.

  • I think Vick starts. Also, I love the idea someone posed regarding a search through the football team’s roster to try and find someone interested in suiting up for the basketball team and playing the post as an extra body if needed. Even though it was probably said tongue in cheek, I wouldn’t say the chance of this happening is zero by any means, its really an interesting idea.

  • RockkChalkk said:

    I think Vick starts. Also, I love the idea someone posed regarding a search through the football team’s roster to try and find someone interested in suiting up for the basketball team and playing the post as an extra body if needed. Even though it was probably said tongue in cheek, I wouldn’t say the chance of this happening is zero by any means, its really an interesting idea.

    I legitimately meant it. Another body to commit fouls if needed plus the help in practice would be solid too. Self was talking at LN about small guys guarding Doke in practice. That really doesn’t help Doke any.

  • @BShark

    A lot of people look small guarding Doke.

    But I do agree he isn’t being pushed in practice by anyone that can guard him physically.

  • hard to argue with that projected starting line up. - -ROCK CHALK ALL DAY LONG BABY

  • I don’t see him starting Vick over Svi, but I think their minutes will be about the same. What a nice problem to have.

    DG Newman Svi Preston Doke

  • @BShark Not sure of your age but - -I remember - -maybe you remember when Clint normore came and played a part on our team - -love those days think he even hit a big shot maybe two in the game for us.ROCK CHALK ALL DAY LONG BABY

  • KUSTEVE said:

    What a nice problem to have.

    Garrett, our 5th guard, would start for some Big 12 teams this year. #problemsfromthetop

  • It’s a pretty safe bet that all available players are going to see decent minutes!

  • DanR said:

    It’s a pretty safe bet that all available players are going to see decent minutes!

    Not sure about Sam needs basketball skills Cunliffe.

  • BShark said:

    Svi has defensive limitations.

    I don’t really think this is true. Last year, he definitely gave up plenty on defense. But in a few games vid footage was captured directly on him and he was very capable of being a good defender. The question is… why wasn’t he consistent on defense?

    Defense is something where players can bring consistency. They will all improve their stock by playing hard defense ALL the time!

    I feel like Svi was just inconsistent on defense pretty much like he was often inconsistent on offense.

    Let’s hope he matured a bit more and will stay focused on both sides of the ball this year!

    Vick… wow! He makes big gains every year and he isn’t even near the upper end of his window!

  • @drgnslayr Svi will play a key role on the team but he has lateral quickness issues and t-rex arms. These are physical things that he can’t really change. What he can do of course is make sure he is in good position, but that can’t totally make up for the fact that he could be much more disruptive if he had good length. We saw this with Perry, and honestly Perry was insanely smart and was disrupting offensive flow his SR year by just knowing where to be.

  • @BShark I think Garrett goes gonzo this year. Coach has made comments about him that speak volumes. He is a multi talented/ multi position player that plays excellent defense. Garrett has sunk Cunliffe’s battleship, imo.

  • KUSTEVE said:

    @BShark I think Garrett goes gonzo this year. Coach has made comments about him that speak volumes. He is a multi talented/ multi position player that plays excellent defense. Garrett has sunk Cunliffe’s battleship, imo.

    Ready made for Self. Didn’t play high level AAU crap ball. HS coach an old friend of Self and a defense/team ball oriented coach. Moves the ball. Rebounds. Probably one of the most ready to play for Self recruits that we have ever seen. Josh qualifies here as well of course.

    I have no doubt he is the 5th guard over Cunliffe.

  • Surprised there’s no mention of D. Lawson vs. Preston as a starter. What gives? Is Preston that much better? I’m not sold on it yet.

  • @hawkmoon2020

    D. Lawson isn’t eligible this year because he’s a transfer. He can practice like Newman did last year, but can’t play in games.

  • @hawkmoon2020 Are you talking about the 2018 year? I’m not sure Preston will be around next year.

  • The PLAN for Preston is OAD. And if KU is going to reach the FF this year, I believe Preston will have certainly performed well enough to be OAD.

  • Well, duh. I was talking about this year, so my bad re: Lawson. It’s been a long day. Seems like there’s not much argument other than with Svi and Vick. Plus, we all know that just because you start at the beginning of the season, doesn’t mean you will be staring at the end.

  • @hawkmoon2020 No big deal. Fwiw, I think Dedric would start if eligible. It might work out better for Preston though that Self barely has other options.

    And yeah not too much to debate this year with the lack of depth. Seems pretty clear cut.

  • Graham, Newman, and Azubuike definitely start. Preston should start, but if he isn’t as good as we hope, I could see Svi at the 4 and Vick on the wing. Svi vs. Vick for that starting spot at the 3 should be the battle to watch in practice.

    I think I’d rather see Vick start over Svi because Svi can come off the bench and sub for 1-4 without a major drop. Obviously if Svi subs for Graham, Newman slides to point.

  • I’m going to go with seniority and say graham, newman, Vick, Svi and Doke start. Eventually we get to Preston replacing Svi.

  • Only two post players (Lightfoot is more of an unskilled guard). Where do they (Dok, Preston) get breathers? 4 guard lineup looks like it will get more play than I expected sans Josh. Josh really made it work, i don’t think Svi can guard the post (or any position) nearly as well.

    It may get ugly as this team finds itself.

  • @BShark

    True. No way to compare Svi’s athleticism against Vick’s.

    But a lot of this is hustle and having a player’s mind properly focused. Even slower guys can usually play good defense… they just don’t have the ability to make up for slacking off or from making a mistake.

    Recall last year when we caught the vid on Svi actually buckling down on a quick guard. He even hedged a bit… something rare to see with Self players.

  • @dylans

    I am not sure I would call Light foot a guard of any sort. I would say that he is built as a SF but plays PF and this is how KU has him listed in the roster.

    KU has several players that can play SF/Wing but it is very thin at PF (Preston) and Center (Doke) so my guess is he will continue to play one of these two positions, primarily PF.

  • I don’t think we saw particularly good defense out of either Vick or Svi last season. I’m sure tape would show both had their fair-share of lapses defensively.

    Now we have Self praising Vick for his off-season work yet again and saying he should be our best wing defender. I’m not sure I’m buying that Vick has magically become a better defender. He is an exciting athlete though and his 2nd year as a key rotation player should help him improve in all area’s of the game that he needs to keep improving at.

    We also heard reports Svi dropped 20 pounds this summer which would lead us to believe he’s quicker and lighter on his feet then he was last season where he looked bigger then his previous seasons at KU. If that helps with lateral quickness and his ability to keep a man in front of him then by all means why wasn’t this thought of years before. I know someone else has pointed out in the past that Svi has high hip action and almost zero wingspan so his deficiencies are physical. As a Senior we should theoretically be getting the best version of Svi so his understanding of his job should not be in question at this stage in his career.

    Overall this is going to be a very average defensive team that is going to rely on outscoring opponents. I see nothing heading into the season that changes that opinion

  • I do love projected lineup stuff … when we actually had 11 players in the mix, it was a touch more interesting though.

    We are very handicapped by our big man situation. But the jury is out on whether it will harm us in March. Even in 2012, Wesley was our 4th man in the post and KY the third – plus we had two guys that were both better than what we have now. How things have changed.

    I personally think that Vick will become the next big thing here. I think he’s better than Svi. Self seemed to favor Vick down the stretch last season.

    My starting lineup would be Graham, Newman, Vick, Preston, and Udoka. Almost a no brainer. But if we are playing the same scheme as last season, Svi might get the nod over Preston. By December 1, it’s Preston for sure (unless he’s really Carton Bragg, as some doomsayer mentioned here at some point – don’t say things like that).

    I truly think that this is also PF-Light’s time to shine – Mitch Lightfoot. What a great situation for him to be in. He’s needed, which is a good place to be.

  • To start the season, I bet we go with Graham, Newman, Vick, Preston, and Udoka. I could also see Svi beating out Preston for the 4 spot if he struggles by sinking back into the bad habits he’s always had. Nothing grinds Self’s gears like a slow motor, and Billy has pretty much always had one. If reports are to be believed, Svi has grown a little bit and lost some weight, so he should be better on defense. I know Self said he’d like to play big 70% of the time, but that’s entirely dependent on how Preston plays.

  • @HighEliteMajor It would not surprise me to see either Svi or Lightfoot start at the beginning of the season. over Preston…either because their experience shows or because Preston doesn’t “get” the effort / hustle required at this level. No question we need him to “get it”…I think he will…maybe sooner but certainly later in the season.

  • @BShark There is nothing better than Self complaining about the team’s defense, as there’s nothing more directly related to winning than team defense.

    This is going to be a weird team I think … perhaps unlike any other Self has had. I could see us struggle in every phase of the game.

    Defense does concern me. Not even a quasi-stopper in the bunch. Ball handling is a question mark. Graham is not close to Mason’s magic there. And is Newman even of #2 quality with the ball? Who is really a go to guy? We had two last year. Besides Udoka, who hammers the boards? Preston doesn’t seem to have that gene. Is Newman really a guy we can rely on for consistent scoring? And who is the 40+% three point shooter besides Graham – since our lack of inside bodies will necessitate more shooting?

    More question marks here than in past years. But we have coach Self. That seems to outweigh most everything else.

  • HighEliteMajor said:

    And who is the 40+% three point shooter besides Graham – since our lack of inside bodies will necessitate more shooting?


  • @HighEliteMajor

    Last years 3-pt shooting had Devonte at 38.8%, Svi at 39.8% and Vick at 37.0% so all 3 of them are candidates to shot the 3 along with Newman and of course you also have my favorite Mitch Lightfoot that shot 66.7%.

    In Italy:

    • Newman: 9-18 - 50%, including the second game when he sot 0-3 and the last game when he shot 6-8.
    • Devonte: 9-22 - 41%, including the last game when he shot 1-8.
    • Svi: 7-17 - 41%, including the third game when he shot 1-7.
    • Vick: 4-10 - 40%, including the fourth game when he shot 1-3.

    Looks like they all had one off-game out of 4 but the averages look good so far and I would expect all of them to shoot close to or better than 40%.

  • I think Newman and Preston are the guys on this team you ask to create for themselves which is dangerous because it’s the first year playing under Self. Maybe Vick. Svi and Graham are more in the flow of the offense types I think. Garrett I think can create for others, which is big.

  • @HighEliteMajor

    MPG : FG% 3P Ast TO RBS PPG

    33.5 .434 .381 4.6 1.9 4.3 12.9

    35.3 .428 .388 4.1 1.8 3.1 13.4

    Which line is Franks, and which is Devonte? I don’t share the same worries you have about Devonte. I think our team defense is a work in progress, but Vick could really stand out, along with Garrett off the bench. Just having Doke in the middle for a whole season improves our defense inside, imo. And Devonte has the ability to really step up his defense, like he did his sophomore year. Remember him out dueling Buddy Hield? There’s a reason why Newman was ranked in the top 5- no doubt he will not remind anyone of Bob Cousey with the ball, but the kid can flat shoot. I think higher of Preston than you. I think that Preston will be motivated to rebound because that is all he is going to hear from the coaching staff for the next 6 months. I also think people will be surprised how polished Billy is with the ball. He is an excellent passer, and has good handles for being such a large guy. And the guy can shoot.

    Our big weak spot is lack of depth up front. Then the rebounding issues rear their ugly head. If Doke is on the bench w 2 fouls in the first 10 minutes, then we take a big step down on the boards, no matter who we put in.

  • @JayHawkFanToo I want Mitch stationed within 5 feet of the basket on offense.

  • @HighEliteMajor

    My biggest question concerning this team is Graham. This is now HIS team. He’s never lead a KU team before.

    My hopes are that he takes ownership and the responsibilities that go with the job. If he takes it serious, then he will come prepared every game to be “the guy.”

    We know what he can do. We know what he did to Hield down in Norman. That is the game he needs to bring EVERY game this year!

    Frank spent 4 years learning how to be a point guard… one area where he was never “short”… bringing intensity and fight.

  • @drgnslayr Guilty as charged. Or, as I like to say "deferred as charged’. I understand the concept of letting your teammate shine in his senior year. Especially when he’s in the running for POY in college basketball. Devonte was not the same player last year as the year before. He went from being considered the most clutch player on the team to a question mark for this year. I think he deferred to Frank way more than in the two previous years. I think he is every bit as good as Frank at point guard, but simply in a different way as Frank. No doubt, Frank can score. Frank’s quickness combined with toughness allowed him to drive on practically anyone. His drives to the hoop were a work of art. So, I think I am safe in saying that there is no way Devonte comes close to matching Frank’s scoring numbers. However, there were times in his career that Frank tried to win the game by himself. You can’t fault a guy for trying too hard, but I always wanted to see Frank work the other guys in more. I know Frank averaged 5 assists, which is good, but I think Devonte’s asst numbers will be better. His point guard mentality will result in that extra pass to his teammate in the perfect spot. And don’t forget, in his soph campaign, he hit 44% from 3, so he has the ability to light it up.


    I hope Devonte doesn’t score as much as Frank. Instead, I’d like to see him have more assists than Frank. Frank was clutch, and a great scorer. Devonte can be a great scorer, too. But Frank often had to take it to the hole because his guys weren’t fighting hard enough to get open to score.

    We have this concept at Kansas… between players… that “it isn’t my turn.” That’s the concept where you put a bunch of talent on the same team and players have a reason to take plays off. This has bothered me for years.

    Players should be good teammates… but should also keep the peddle to the metal. There should be some natural competitiveness between the teammates themselves.

    I know players like Josh sort of threw a wrench in this attitude just by being pushed to the top. But look at last year, with our POY point guard… and at times, it reminded me of watching one of Sherron’s teams. When players would take plays off because we had Sherron.

    My thoughts and hopes… that Malik is cut from a different cloth. I’m hoping he doesn’t throttle back his game because this is “Devonte’s team.” I’m hoping he sets the example that players need to fight hard on every play.

  • It looks like Devonte will average a good amount of assists this year, I wouldn’t be surprised to see him top the Big-12 this year in that category.

    Who else is a good passer on this team? Legitimate question right there.

    I hope that Newman proves to be more of a team player then he has ever been asked to be. When his shot is falling he’s always had the “kobe-esque” type mentality. Now his primary role will be scoring the ball and I have no doubt he’ll lead the team in that but there will be plenty of situations where Graham is in foul trouble/gets cramps/is getting some rest and we’ll need Malik and company to step up.

  • @BeddieKU23

    Svi is a good passer but that is not his primary role so his number are not high but you can tell he has good basketball IQ.

  • @JayHawkFanToo

    I agree he is a capable passer and your right his role limits how much he gets to show that part of his game. Maybe we see some changes from Svi this season.

    But the question still remains who is going to feed the big boy in the middle if its not Graham. Who’s setting Svi up for the 3, or Newman? Svi & Vick averaged less then 2 assists per 40. Newman at Miss St was 3.1 per 40 so he does offer some hope if his role isn’t strictly scoring. There are definitely some major questions surrounding this team. It will be exciting seeing how it all fits together

  • I believe Garrett is a good passer but we need to see him do it at the D1 level.

  • @BShark

    I keep thinking that Garret might be the one big positive surprise. He played PG in HS and has height and athleticism and basically can play and defend 3 positions, maybe even 4.