DeCourcy: Jayhawks Will Make Final Four ~ BitterSweetLife

Saturday, October 13, 2007

DeCourcy: Jayhawks Will Make Final Four

In an article titled, "Eight Indisputable Realities About the Upcoming Season" (nice), Mike DeCourcy has this to say about the 2007-2008 Kansas basketball squad.

Kansas is not going away. The first preseason yearbook I picked up (not ours, trust me) had KU ranked eighth. I had to check the front cover again to make sure this wasn't a football book. Eighth? That's a joke. I'm not guaranteeing Kansas makes the Final Four, but if they don't, they'll have more victories than just about anyone else that misses.

The Jayhawks' loss of Julian Wright to the NBA draft opens a job for Darrell Arthur, who, frankly, is better. This team has issues, such as whether Sherron Collins will get himself into peak condition and whether Arthur will be featured as he should be on offense. But they're the kind of issues that will decide whether the team contends for the national title.

I'm not sure I agree with DeCourcy's assessment that Darrell Arthur is better than Julian Wright, although Arthur may very well be a better scorer and could become a more consistent college player. JuJu was kind of erratic at KU, but he has an incredible skill set, as he'll prove in the NBA.

Update: And here's more on Darrell Arthur from the KC Star. Bill Self describes his play over the summer:
“It was the best I’ve ever seen him look, and he wasn’t shooting the ball,” Self said. “He’s always based his performance on getting the ball in the basket. I do think he has become more whole. He’s still going to clip off shots, but last year, per minute, he was right up there with the national leaders.”
And Brandon Rush counters:
“Don’t listen to [Arthur talking about passing more],” Rush said. “He still likes to shoot every time he touches it. I don’t have a problem with that at all. Half the time it’s going to go in.”
Of course the truth lies somewhere in between. Arthur needs to know when to throw the ball back out to KU's very capable guards, but he also needs to be a consistently strong scoring presence in the paint this year for the Jayhawks to advance.

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R. Sherman said...

Things will be interesting on this side of the state with Majerus returning to SLU. I occasionally have taken in Billiken games when I need a live college hoops fix. He brings instant credibility to the program and can probably draw in some of the prime metro St. Louis recruits who in years past have gravitated to Illinois and other programs. The recruiting wars between him and Anderson will be interesting.


Ariel said...

I agree, Majerus adds cred to SLU, so long as he doesn't have a heart attack on the sideline. Add the Billikens to the list of interesting opponents.

Bill Self has an IL pipeline also, so it's likely that he'll bump heads with both Majerus and Anderson.


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