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Three schools recruiting him the hardest.
Recruiting and rankings aren’t important to Emmanuel Mudiay at this moment, but he did name the three schools who are pursuing him the hardest.
Color me surprised. With our point guard needs I thought for sure KU would have been one of those 3 schools.
I don't get the impression Self sees the need as dire.
Selden, Frankamp, Mason, Tharpe and Adams can all handle the ball as combo guards. I am sure they would love to have an elite ball handler but we have plenty of guys who will be pretty good at it. He has never been hung up on getting a traditional point guard. We have issues this year because Tharpe is our only backup and neither Ben or Travis are really strong ball handlers in their own right. If we paired EJ with Selden or Frankamp it would reduce the pressure on him a ton. No single guy next year will face as much pressure as EJ or Tharpe do this year when they are in with the two wings.
I'm pretty sure Self DOES see it as a dire need. He wants an elite PG every year. I know for a fact he desperately wants Tyus Jones and that he loves Mudiay.
I've never got the feeling that Mudiay was a recruit that would be a KU guy though. Has that Baylor\Zona\UK feel to him, and it shows in his Top 3.
My guy says he's a UK player in the end.
I would say that Tyus is the #1 priority for Self in 2014.
Agreed. Self recruits the elite pg's every year for a reason , but for whatever can't land one recently. He may say Elijah is his guy and he is, but if he had his preference Elijah would likely be off the ball. Self wanted Smart big time. Can you imagine this KU team with Smart at point ?
Or hell, even just Trevor Releford. I'm pretty sure he'd admit to making a mistake by not recruiting Trevor harder (but that's 20\20 hindsight, as that year he was laser-focused on Josh Selby).
Even just a true PG of good caliber (not elite) would make a huge difference, hence the comments by Self elsewhere that Frank Mason would start this year if he were on campus.
I know the whole "combo" thing is a buzz word for KU fans, but Self really does have defined "roles" that he looks for in players. He really wants\needs a slashing\attacking PG, of which he just doesn't have on this team.
I don't disagree with you in general that Self wants an elite PG. He wants all sorts of elite players at all positions. But I don't get the impression that he is always after the same type of PG's that someone like Roy would be after. Self wants a guy who can shoot the ball a bit at that spot. I think in his perfect world you are right and he would love to have an elite PG. But I don't think the need is nearly as dire next year as it is this year.
I don't fall into the all guards are equal camp. But I do see that it will be a very different situation next year when you will have 3 or 4 guys who can play and handle the ball with some level of competence as opposed to 2 this year. The problem is just exacerbated by having our two best other smalls be weak with the ball in Releford and McLemore.
The problem is, and I firmly believe Self was would tell you the same, that Naadir and Anrio just are not PGs in the mold he wants. Mason fits the mold to a T - aggressive, attacks off screens, plays very north\south, etc. Selden is an interesting one because I've heard before that a couple of staffs thought they could turn him into an elite PG. Whether that happens or not remains to be seen.
While the public image is that we just need 3-4 guys who can handle the ball with some competence, in reality Self ALWAYS wants a "point guard" in his lineups. Whether it's Tyus, Mudiay, or Dom Collier - he wants a true PG.
Can we put an end to the Adams as PG discussion? He didn't play as a PG in high school, Self has all but said that he's a 2 and he has shown no demonstrable PG skills in the (admittedly few) looks he's got at the position this year. EJ was a much higher ranked player with what looked to be more natural handling abilities coming in and look what having the responsibilities of being the lead ball handler has done to his game.
Frankamp very well may be able to play the position due to his high basketball IQ, but it's also not his natural role and, more importantly, it decreases the opportunities he'll have to drain catch-and-shoot looks that should be his bread and butter at the college level. He's not a long term solution at the position either.
Selden's intriguing because he has the best slashing ability of the aforementioned players and an eye for the (at times overly complicated) pass. But, again, it's not his natural position, and I suspect he would have serious turnover problems if he were to spend significant time at the PG position next year.
Which leaves the two natural PGs we'll have on the team next year...
Some people are more patient than I am, but I'm now ready to throw in the towel on the idea that Tharpe has the mentality to be a successful PG at the elite level. Dude's size, gunner mentality and defensive liabilities all lead me to believe that he would be much better off at the midmajor level where he could be the star of the show. But he just doesn't seem to get that (save garbage time) he should never be the first option when he's been on the floor, and it's absolutely killing us. If he ends up being our starter next year, there is little to no chance we're going anywhere in March (which, quite frankly, is likely the case regardless).
Mason, then, is the obvious wild card. His ranking and previous commitment do not provide much hope that he'll be able to play right away, particularly with what will be an incredibly young team, but he supposedly has the tools that Self wants in his PG and Jerry's bullishness on him is a reason for at least some optimism.
In any event, I think it's absolutely vital we get a top 5 PG next year, and I have no doubt that Self would agree after the disaster that has been our performance at the position this year.
Wow...it's like there's an echo in here somewhere. :-)
I've been saying for months now that I expect Frank Mason to play early and often, and likely to start a lot of games in 2013-2014. Partially, I believe that because I believe him to be better than the rankings indicate (and, FWIW, Jerry has him higher than any expert and still he worries more about Frank being better than he has him ranked than worse). But I also believe that for all the reasons you've laid out - we don't have anyone else on the roster for next year who is a primary ball handler. People seem to think Frankamp, Adams, Selden, Tharpe, etc. are going to evolve into great offense-starting point guards, not much different than people expected from Johnson or Chalmers. Haven't we watched this movie before? Guys don't just become point guards because we thrust them into that role. Chalmers was a trainwreck when he was thrust into that role early in his career, and he never became the lead guard again. Johnson has been horrendous in the role this year; even when we were winning, Johnson was not good at initiating the offense. I expect Selden, Frankamp, Tharpe, etc. to get minutes next to Mason next year and that in short spells we'll see two of the three together, but the people dreaming that our starting lineup will be feature Selden, Frankamp, and Greene together are sorely mistaken by every indication I can find.
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