NCAA Early Departures

The Kansas Jayhawks suffered another embarrassing loss in the NCAA tournament losing to VCU in the Elite Eight. After another dominating year, the Kansas Jayhawks can’t make the Final Four. But even more disappointing, I believe, is that they are losing 6 of their top 7 players going into next season. Obviously three of those were coming because they were seniors and their eligibility is up. But the other three were underclassman that declared for the NBA draft.

The Morris twins are projected at mid first round picks and are juniors so their draft stock won’t get much better unless they had career seasons next year which would be tough to do. The big surprise was the freshman G Josh Selby declared for the draft while be projected as a late 1st round to early 2nd round pick. He was projected as a lottery pick coming out of high school but after a disastrous first season with KU his draft stock has plummeted. The only reason he could still be a first round pick is purely off potential, scouts still think there might be something there even though he couldn’t even produce at the college level.

How, though, can Josh Selby declare for the draft when he is barely projected in the first round when you have a player like Harrison Barnes, who was projected as the #2 pick in the draft, decides to come back for another year of college. Barnes is not the only projected first rounder to return to school, there are several others. So why can’t Bill Self get his players to return to school? Is Roy Williams more convincing to get his players to come back or is it just the players that these coach’s recruit? Coach Roy Williams has always found ways to get super stars in the college level to stay for at least a couple years. Bill Self has had two players the last two years that have left after their freshman seasons when they aren’t projected as very high picks and could drastically improve their stock if they just stayed in school a little longer.

Bill has some work to do before the next season starts with so many top players in the lineup gone. They will get a tough start to the season with the Maui Invitational and the new Championship Classic with Duke, Kentucky and Michigan State. But with the great talent KU had on the bench and a few scholarships still to fill before next season, I believe Bill Self will find a way to make a very competitive year.

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