Final Grades For Year (+ Last Year's Recruiting Class)

  • Bill Self playing the talent he had = B+

    I would have liked to have seen a little more big Dave. He did come on strong late. What could Self really do differently with the talent he had otherwise? He pulled the red shirt off Agbaji, and the kid started out red hot, but cooled off. He played Vick, Vick just quit the team. He let Q play through his issues, Charlie through his issues, KJ through his issues.

    Had Doke been healthy, SDS was available, and Vick stayed, would I be questioning why he played certain guys in situations where the most talented guy was on the bench? Probably a little more yeah. But that isn’t what happened.

    Bill Self recruiting top talent this year = A-

    I think building around Dedric was a big mistake. Recruiting around SDS was an epic mistake. And KJ, Charlie were not very impactful scholarship players. But Im counting these guys as recruits from last year’s class.

    And I really really like Dotson and Agbaji and Dave, and if Q stayed I think he could grow into a decent player. All four of these guys made a really solid recruiting class.

    As far as last years class, that has got to be = D

    De Souza - horrible for Kansas

    Preston - horrible for Kansas

    Garrett - bad shooter, good defender, pretty good athlete

    Dedric - skilled scorer, competitor, underathletic

    KJ - slow big, not very athletic, decent shooter

    Charlie - shooter who shoots but can’t shoot

  • What happened last year? How was our recruiting so bad? That’s a pretty dysfunctional class.

  • @approxinfinity wasn’t Preston the year before?

  • Crimsonorblue22 said:

    @approxinfinity wasn’t Preston the year before?

    No! These were all last year

  • D for DISASTER. Exactly. The horrible lows - SDS, Preston, Moore outweigh the high (Dedric) by a good bit. KJ and Garett would get a C and B- respectively in my book.

  • KU swung and missed a lot in a few classes.

    The success of future classes is self sticking with an offensive scheme. Going back to hi low 3-2 traditional after years of the 4-1 is disastrous to recruiting. Guys have no idea what style they are going into. This is how KU builds for the future, recruit to the style and stick with it. Guys know what Coach K is running, what Roy is running. The list goes on and on. What is KU running? I honestly dont know as a fan.

  • @BeddieKU23 I actually think that not having a set system helps with recruiting. You sell that “we adapt our style to the players”. It takes the thought out of recruits heads that they don’t see themselves in a certain style.

  • approxinfinity said:

    De Souza - horrible for Kansas

    Without Silvio, we don’t get to the Final 4 last year. So here’s the old question again. Was last year’s Final 4 worth this season’s debacle? Is that a trade you’d take?

    (I’m not interested in any vacating paranoia)

  • @tundrahok no. Never bought into that line of thought, but I never considered the reason for the streak to end would be cheating to reach a final four.

  • @dylans Ooh, that’s pretty harsh.

  • dylans said:

    @tundrahok no. Never bought into that line of thought, but I never considered the reason for the streak to end would be cheating to reach a final four.

    Did something change between all the teams prior and last year’s team with Silvio? Did we suddenly need to pay Preston and Silvio and never had to do that to get high talent players before? Either we have been paying players all along, or we didn’t need to have Silvio to get to the FF, we could have recruited a talented big cleanly, like we did in years past.

    So in my mind, saying we don’t get to FF without Silvio can also be construed as “we can’t ever sniff a championship without paying players all along”. That may be the case. But, I have to consider whether I want to watch CBB any more if it is. And not because I don’t think the kids should get payed, specifically. I’m just tired of the vast hypocrisy of a highly profitable industry creating this bullshit system of pay under the table.

  • That duke win was oh so satisfying! Was so happy for the sr’s.

  • Crimsonorblue22 said:

    That duke win was oh so satisfying! Was so happy for the sr’s.

    It was pretty great. But Duke is a product of the environment as well. The worst, ugliest product of this environment.

  • @tundrahok SDS did make us a FF team. Without him though this mess we’re in may not be an issue. I wish we could wind the clock back give back Preston and SDS, and take our chances given our current predicament.

    And we can’t make the vacating issue go away by just not wanting to talk about it. Be ready. I will be shocked if we’re not made an example of.

  • @HighEliteMajor Oh I think vacating wins is the least of our worries. That will happen. Count on it. I think we will be made an example.

  • @HighEliteMajor All I meant was that I wanted to focus on wins and losses, for this particular question. Not having Silvio last year may have changed our recruitment for this year. Would you give up last year’s final 4 for better success on the court this year? The debacle I meant was not extending the conference championship streak. The vacating issue is a different issue.

  • @tundrahok Ok … No I would not. Much like I’d take a NC then missing the tourney. I like big banners. In fact, I think losing the streak is a good thing. Too much focus on worrying about it. It’s nice we have the record. Time to focus on more important things.

  • @approxinfinity We didn’t pay players. Adidas paid players.

    In my field we wait until we have all the data before drawing conclusions. The information that’s available to the public can be interpreted in opposite ways. I suspect more info may become available, but I don’t know what’s going to happen. I’m going to wait and see.

    In the meantime, I’m not going to get so down and depressed. I’m not going to assume the worst, like others who claim absolute certainty without any more information than I have. That’s just not healthy.

    You in particular aren’t usually such a downer! I have often appreciated your positivity and perspective on the world. I hope your family is ok. I hope your pets are healthy. I hope your job is secure. I hope you continue to watch college basketball. Otherwise this site would end. And that would really suck.

  • @approxinfinity I don’t see how a recruiting class that contains a consensus All-American can be given a D.

  • @tundrahok because that All American was given a car from a booster and didnt play a single minute for KU? That’s -1 scholarship, negative press, and increases the chances of harsh penalties from the NCAA in exchange for zilch.

    Surely there is a character element to recruiting? I feel like we have seen enough of Preston and family to recognize that they were bad news, at least in hindsight.

  • @approxinfinity Dedric Lawson was the consensus All-American. That other guy never played for KU.

  • Oh sorry, I read that as Mcdonalds All American.

    Got you. Dedric was the best piece of the class, but also couldn’t rim protect, couldn’t dunk, dominated ball, and came with a kid brother who was average. He was a piece to the puzzle, he was not a transcendant player. He was a pre-season All-American, he was a third team All American when the dust settled.

  • He sure wasn’t perfect, but 3rd team is still on the team!

  • @tundrahok

    You could argue that less is more:

    0_1554610194903_Screenshot from 2019-04-07 00-09-12.png

    ^ This might be a better class because Bennett returns guys and doesn’t need a big class. In our case we bring in 1 guy that never plays and 3 that leave after playing 1 year. Which will again leave our program in a state of disarray.

    And we havent mentioned that with the exception of Dedric’s .397 3pt%, the other guys in that group are all awful 3 pt shooters! Marcus .245, Charlie .267, KJ .310 SDS N/A? Preston N/A

  • Also here’s the people we replaced:

    • Jamari Traylor F
    • Hunter Mickelson F
    • Evan Manning G
    • Perry Ellis F
    • Wayne Selden, Jr. G Junior
    • Brannen Greene G Junior
    • Cheick Diallo F Freshman Entered Draft[5]

    That’s a huge group to depart at once. And I can see how Self would want to get grad transfers to try to stagger the departures a bit more. So, that probably should be taken into account when grading the heavy investment in transfers in Dedric/KJ/Charlie. However, we end up right back at the same place trying to fill 6 guys if Doke, SDS, and Q leave.

    Of the 6 schollie guys that left above, (Evan wasnt schollie, right?) only Perry and Wayne and Jamari (in being a max effort, good kid, team player whom I’m sure was a good influence) grew to be what we hoped they would be. Had Brannen and Check been high character 3 or 4 year guys, they would have suited Self a lot better and we would not now be talking about a 6 player class that gets a D. Maybe a 4 player class that gets a C?

  • Question. In this article about Charlie…

    Does this mean that the Lawsons were friends with (?) and might have encouraged taking Charlie on?

    He initially committed to Memphis before swapping to California, where he was heavily featured in his freshman season.

    If this was a 3 person package that makes Dedric’s acquisition even more costly.

  • @approxinfinity So the discussion reverts to the question of whether we should recruit one&dones, with the corollary of whether we should recruit transfers. Once you go that route, recruiting classes necessarily get big. Self thinks the best strategy is to recruit the best players, but should he leave empty spots on the roster if he doesn’t fill them all with the players he really wants? Would we be better off with unused scholarships than Charlie and KJ?

    Tait recently discussed the uptick in transfers all over the country.

    It’s not just the big schools, but small schools too that are subject to transfer issues. We can blame society, entitlement, or whatever. But it’s just an issue we’re stuck with. Great players don’t stay in school. Other players transfer, both in and out. Should we not recruit the best players, or not invite a good player from another school to join our roster?

    A good argument can be made that the best strategy is to recruit decent players who aren’t the highest ranked coming out of high school and develop them. Fill the roster with Franks, Devontes, and Svis. But I don’t think that’s very realistic. Especially with bigs. You can’t teach height. Big, skilled players are rare.

    I think we’re stuck with the way things are now. I’m not sure you can blame Self. It’s just the way things are now.

  • Man, you’re too fast for me! I’m a couple of posts behind.

  • @approxinfinity You’re right, once it’s started it’s hard to break the cycle of needing a big recruiting class.

    Basketball transfers could be like recruiting JuCo football players. Pretty strong arguments have been made that JuCo players aren’t the best long-term strategy for football. But few jump to the NFL early, and there aren’t as many professional options for professional American football. We might just be stuck with what we have in basketball.

  • @tundrahok 🙂

    I don’t know who was responsible for connecting with the Lawsons and Charlie, but as for the other guys, I’d give Snacks a B for Marcus and Townsend an F for SDS and Preston (F for Fired).

    I get your point that transfers are a big part of the landscape, and I always check myself about going too hard against transfers considering Malik and Tarik. I mostly think 3 was too many. Those years we invested in 1, and both were smart investments.

  • @approxinfinity I think it’s a bit of a stretch to suggest Charlie was friends with the Lawsons. Then never played together at Memphis or elsewhere. Charlie may have merely been trying to upgrade each time, from Memphis to Cal to KU.

    KU didn’t work out for him. Maybe he wilted under the brightest lights. Maybe parents’ illnesses this year really did take a toll on him. But I don’t think it was a bad move by Self, based on the information available at the time. Charlie did pretty well at Cal. No reason to think he wouldn’t continue to improve, much less regress, under a hall-of-fame coach.

    Unless transfers are just bad news. Maybe they should all suck it up and stick with their initial decision. But players can change their minds, and it can turn out well. See Frank and Devonte.

  • @approxinfinity So you would take lower-ranked recruits straight out of high school rather than taking a chance on a transfer? When the high turnover has already started and roster spots need to be filled?

    Or would you roll the dice, not fill the spots, and hope for more 5-star recruits the following year? With the high turnover on college basketball rosters, that would likely just exacerbate the problem.

  • @tundrahok I think I don’t go after the top 20 guys at all, unless they are deadset on coming to KU. Let Duke and Kentucky fight over them. Go after 21-100. Then I don’t have as much of a problem with a few transfers if they’re fitting into a deep rotation of mostly 3-4 year guys.

  • If my memory is correct, and granted my wife claims that is doubtful, SDS wanted to come to KU which put his pimp in a bind because he had already sold him to Maryland. So much scrambling was done trying to make the Maryland payment go away which resulted in $2500 going to the pimp supposedly for a class which I have heard may not have even been needed or taken.

    Now if that is in fact the way things fell out why the hate for SDS? it sounds like he was the driver to come to KU even though big money was on the line to go elsewhere. That is the one thing that leads me to believe he was not involved in the bartering for his services as he obviously didn’t go for the big bucks. Of course all the facts are not on the table, I for one am giving him (and my memory) the benefit of the doubt until the trash comes to rest. My hate is for Mr Pimp and his cronies, and ANY of the coaching staff that may be outed as taking part of this fine example of greed.

    Now for Preston, I met him at a camp the summer he came to campus. I posted on here then my doubts about him, I was polite about it then, he was obviously a head case that had no respect for his teammates and little desire to interact with them. TBH him not playing was better than watching him protect the goods most the season and then try to play superstar from time to time to jack up his rep.

    Yes I may be a bit grouchy this morning and perhaps had to edit this once or twice

  • I’ve got a question for everyone… how many McD’s AAs will be playing in tomorrows National Championship game? Any?

    I know we all love signing elite recruits. The process tells us that some of the best players out there prefer Kansas. But what do we really get in return? From my perspective… we receive plenty of nice press from the players that go on to big NBA careers. Jojo comes to mind. As far as hanging banners… I’m not convinced they are the answer.

    What would happen if we just scrapped the hunt for elite players? We’ve had this discussion before. We focus on finding great athletes with solid potential. Man… I sure would have liked to see Harper from Auburn in a Jayhawk uniform! I looked back and he was rated as the 90th best. Wow! The guy could blow by a cheetah! How smart do you have to be to see potential in that?

    This year’s Final Four will be remembered for the quality coaches who made it there. All four deserve a very special tip of the hat!

    It’s a good thing, that we’ve been knocked down a few notches within our own conference. We need to do a lot more than just try to out-recruit everyone else in our league. We need to be focused on the basics, and maybe that means a different coaching philosophy and some new life to our assistant coaching staff. Or maybe it just means getting away from the “shiny box” recruits and getting some players in here that are athletically superior and have the heart to work hard and go after a National Championship!

    Duke’s loss turned the light bulb on in my head. Seeing their top recruits fall, along with Zion, should tell us all that talent alone won’t do it most years. There are so many quality recruits out there that never get discovered until after they make it in D1. It does really make me question D1 coaches and their ability to recruit and I’m not just talking about KU…

  • @drgnslayr If it makes you feel any better it took a team that’s in the NC to unseat KU as conference champs.

  • Well, or one that lost in the first round to the Anteaters.

  • HighEliteMajor said:

    Well, or one that lost in the first round to the Anteaters.


  • HighEliteMajor said:

    Well, or one that lost in the first round to the Anteaters.

    You mean the pre-season top 10 team that lost its core late in the season due to the stress of pushing thru trying to overcoming KU? The team that a shell of a KU team ruined based solely upon reputation???

  • You work hard to create a self serving narrative.

  • Smh it’s easy to tear things down. Try building them up.

  • @HighEliteMajor You work awfully hard to undercut Self at every turn. Are you related to Diallo? Did your kid not get a scholarship because of Traylor? Did Lucas piss in your gas tank?

    This year was doomed when Dok and SDS were taken out of the equation. No need to kick the dog. Look for positive signs of growth going forward. I’m pumped about Ochai, Dotson, and McCormack! I hope Grimes sticks around and the light comes on for him soon. I’m excited to see what recruits the staff is able to bring in, there are a number of positions that need help and quality recruits are dwindling. Typical problem when you have so much late roster turnover of underclassmen.

    No need to fixate on the shortcomings of the past. There will be hard times ahead, but the future is always bright, this is Kansas!!!

  • @dylans Oh, are you Self’s little protector? His apologist? @wissox brought up Diallo for what it’s worth, I revisited Self’s foolishness — why? Because I felt like it. And, of course, as time has gone by, it’s more and more obvious that Self’s approach on Diallo was as foolish as I said at the time. The type of player (slug) Self relied on cost is in the exact manner that was discussed before it happened.

    But it is all relevant to our current roster building right now.

    It is so laughable to hear people — you at this time — try to defend the LL/Traylor disaster. How many top players did Self’s misguided love affair with those two cost us?

    And KU didn’t effect KSU at all this year. Makes zero sense.

  • @tundrahok He was 3rd team which does not make him “Consensus”. That rarified air is reserved for the true first team elite like Frank.

  • @dylans

    Good point!

    I just got around to watching Texas Tech vs Michigan State and was amazed at how well Texas Tech executed their game plan and played true hustle defense… the kind of defense many of us talk about and what Kansas doesn’t do, even in our better years. We make up a lot of ground with some of our teams with athleticism.

    But what Beard has done should be focused on and he did it without a bunch of top recruits.

    I have to say that I am extremely impressed with Beard and his abilities. I’m not trying to slam our coaching… though I do think we need to retool our thoughts and consider what Beard is doing.

    If the team is coached well, we shouldn’t be worried if we have a down year recruiting Top 25 talent!

  • @HighEliteMajor

    And KU didn’t effect KSU at all this year. Makes zero sense.

    Quit playing dumb to support your narrative. I seem to remember a very gimpy Wade playing late in the season in an attempt to 1) beat KU 2) dethrone KU as conference champs. IMO this was at the expense of Wade’s health and KSU’s post season chances.

    I didn’t defend anyone, just pointed out your never ending stream of hatred for those players and at Self’s willingness to play them.

    Lucas was never supposed to start. He was 1/2 of an emergency backup plan that included Braeden Anderson. He was recruited over every single year. Did he complain? Did he transfer out? No, he gave KU all he had. Was it enough to win a championship? No. Did he embarrass the University? No. He worked his butt off and gave KU all he had for 5 years. None of those highly ranked recruits that were suppose to replace him were nearly smart enough to learn the system fast enough to not negatively effect the team. i.e. Diallo was rough on a fairly smooth running team. Alexander’s mom is the reason Alexander wasn’t able to finish his freshman year. He was just becoming a nice player. Top 25 recruit and a sophomore, Bragg, was unable to get his head straight and has since transferred…twice. Udoka got injured his freshman year. Lucas was supposed to be a backup and solid practice player.

    Hating on Lucas is like hating on Moody. Neither were supposed to start. Neither were KU caliber talent, but their hard play was rewarded due to roster construction.

    There is no perfect system. Most 4-5 year guys are worse than Lucas. OADs don’t always flourish under complex systems like Self/Wright run. 2-3 year high talent guys are hard to identify - Grimes should be one, but seems dead set on being a OAD. Devon, Ochai, and David are the type of players I love seeing and hope to see more of.

    Doesn’t it seem like certain players were forced upon Kansas by Adidas? The recruits out of left field like Diallo and Preston, or possibly Wright and SDS?

  • @drgnslayr I love what Beard is doing. I wish Hoiberg was still at ISU pushing Self also. Beard is the only coach in America I’m jealous of. First time I’ve felt that since KU played a team coached by a young Billy Self.

  • @Fightsongwriter I’m just repeating what I’ve read:

    Lawson on Tuesday landed on yet another postseason All-American team, this one a third team honor handed out by The Associated Press.

    That news officially made Lawson a consensus third team All-American, which is determined by adding up the various honors handed out by the four major All-American teams — The AP, the USBWA, the NABC and The Sporting News.

    Lawson’s honor marks the fourth consecutive year that the Kansas program has had a consensus All-American, with Perry Ellis earning second team honors in 2016 and Frank Mason III and Devonte’ Graham earning first team honors in 2017 and 2018.

    Lawson becomes the 13th Jayhawk in the Bill Self era to earn consensus All-American honors.

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