I’m hopeful. We had a really great freshman class this year. We bring in another great freshman class (at least so far) next year. High quality guards and energy bigs. Suited for modern ball. That being said, I’d like to do some comparison of Self players vs. Bennett players prior to this years class.
DIAKITE OR SDS
Diakite - 4 star recruit. Went to Virginia over Baylor, NC State, Loyala and Okie State. https://n.rivals.com/content/prospects/2015/mamadi-diakite-3416
SDS - 5 star recruit. Went to KU over Florida, Illinois, Louisville and Maryland. https://n.rivals.com/content/prospects/2018/silvio-de-sousa-2757
Both energy bigs. Which would you rather have baggage and all, knowing what you know now? What if Diakite stays another year and SDS never plays again?
HUFF AND SALT or UDOKA, DEDRIC AND KJ
Jay Huff - 4 star recruit
Jack Salt - 3 star recruit, no other schools
Udoka - 4 star McD All American
I’m going to posit a 2-for-1 here. If you want, we can make this a 2 for 3…throw in KJ a ? star recruit, and Dedric, a 4 star recruit, each of which you get 1 year and then then they leave.
Now I know nobody could foresee Udoka being so injury prone, but even if he were healthy, I ask… do you want a giant McD with broken form and only back to the basket game… Someone who likely expects starter minutes, someone you promise starter minutes… Or do you want a giant back to the basket only big with broken form who doesn’t mind sitting out entire games and is ready to be the match up guy when his number is called (Salt)?
And as for Huff vs Dedric & KJ, do you want a guy that plays within the gameflow and will do whatever is needed of his team to win games (Huff), and shoots 45% from 3 and doesn’t mind sitting out entire games, or 2 guys that expect major minutes and major touches/shots and seldom play defense?
One more comparison.
HUNTER, JEROME OR GUY or MALIK
Malik Newman - 5 star recruit, transfered to Kansas. Great tournament run the one year he was on the floor for us.
We really could have used him this year, but gone. Once a 5 star seeking fortune, always a 5 star seeking fortune?
Deandre Hunter - 4 star
Ty Jerome - 4 star
Kyle Guy - 4 star
Hunter and Jerome are likely gone because they are projected lottery and late 1st round respectively. Guy is likely staying because he is not. All three had moments of dominance in the tournament.
Malik was content leaving undrafted. Why? In my mind, I’d rather have the guy that stays until his stock is as high as it’s going to be. Why even bother with a 1 year (+1 year practice guy) rental?
Malik to Kansas in 2016-2017. Same year that UVA was snatching up these three guys.
As I said I’m hopeful. But as some, @HighEliteMajor, others have said in the past, we can absolutely be critical of the issues with recruiting that Bill Self did prior to this year’s class, and only hope that he recognizes his errors and does not repeat them going forward.
Namely, I never want to make sacrifices for 5 stars again. Either they’re sterling kids or HARD PASS. And I also want to put to rest the fallacy that we have to recruit 5 stars to compete for a national championship. Neither Beard nor Bennett did.