Big weekend for Tyshawn Taylor. He officially graduated from college. He saw some old teammates. He spent the weekend back in Kansas.
Of course, there have been a lot of big weekends for Taylor during the last month. Ask Taylor what he’s been up to since April 2, the day Kansas lost to Kentucky in the NCAA title game, and the smile begins to form.
“I’ve been up to everything,” Taylor says.
Taylor says he spent a few weeks searching for an agent, before settling on Jeff Schwartz of Excel Sports Management (Excel also represents former Jayhawks Nick Collison, Mario Chalmers and Cole Aldrich). He made a stop in Long Island for some workouts. And now he’s settled in Houston, working with former NBA guard John Lucas II, the father of former Oklahoma State star John Lucas III.
“I went out there last summer and I loved it,” Taylor said. “I got better. My game improved a lot, so I went back out there.”
On Friday night, Taylor was at Bishop Miege in Roeland Park to take part in a local KU Barnstorming tour event. Fellow seniors Conner Teahan and Jordan Juenemann were also present, as were former Jayhawks Stephen Vinson, Christian Moody and Sean Pearson.
For now, Taylor says, he’s preparing for individual workouts with NBA teams. The first goal: Get back into shape after taking 20 days off following the championship game.
“I think when you’re in a workout and you’re just doing one-on-one drills,” Taylor said, “I think you just gotta kind of be sharp. You gotta have your ballhandling right. You gotta make shots, because most of them are going to be open — and you gotta be in good shape.”
Other than that, Taylor is simply waiting. According to DraftExpress.com, he's the 27th best prospect in the draft. He does think his game might translate nicely into the NBA — if he can find the right fit. But he also says he understands the reality of his draft prospects. He’s hopeful he can work himself firmly into the back half of the first round, but…
“I’m hoping to just get drafted, honestly,” Taylor said.
Here’s one thing of which he is certain. No matter how the draft shakes out, he’s pretty sure which rookie will be earning hardware next May.
“I’ll put in my vote for Rookie of the Year right now,” Taylor said. “Thomas Robinson.”
Jason Smith (@BrewsterHoops)
5/14/12 6:52 PM
Brewster Alumni Basketball Game- Sat, May 19th at 7:30pm! @Ntharpe1 @RMoore206 @Mooga_Mark @Thaa_Carter5... fb.me/1Gw1K3sSO
Kansas athletics has donated $10,000 to both the Folds of Honor Foundation Kansas City and Wounded Warriors Project charities from its sales from the Victory T-shirts highlighting the final men's basketball conference meeting between Kansas and Missouri.
Kansas won the last league men's basketball Border Showdown, 87-86 overtime, on Feb. 25 in a jam-packed Allen Fieldhouse. Then-No. 4 KU overcame a second-half 19-point deficit to defeat the then-No. 3 Missouri. The contest ended a 106 year league history between the border rivals which started in 1907 as Missouri will join the Southeastern Conference in 2012-13.
The shirts were made special to raise money for the two charities and highlighted the facts of the KU-MU men's basketball rivalry.
Two Missouri state senators are trying to quash the KU Alumni Association’s attempt to make a Jayhawk license plate available in the state after news of the effort hit last week.
“It’s a fascinating study of hatred,” said Kevin Corbett, president of the KU Alumni Association.
Corbett said the association was trying to provide the tags for its 30,000 or so alums in the state.
“Missouri happens to be a state where we’ve got a lot of graduates that would love a license plate,” he said. “It has nothing to do with the University of Missouri.”
Two state senators — Kurt U. Schaefer, R-Columbia, and Bill Stouffer, R-Napton — issued a press release Monday declaring their intentions to block the measure.
Big 12/College News
Nate Mast won’t remain a head coach in his next job. In fact, the Champaign native won’t be permitted to coach, at least in the traditional sense of the word, when he joins the basketball staff at Southern Illinois next month.
…As Mast contemplated a move to Division I, he consulted with Self, his coach during Mast’s senior season at Illinois. The former Illini guard had similar conversations with ex-UI assistants Tim Jankovich, now the associate head coach at SMU, and Norm Roberts, who joined Self’s Kansas staff in April as an assistant.
“They all say the same thing — if you want to continue pursuing things in this profession, then you’ve got to go,” Mast said. “So this felt like a good step. It felt like a good time in our lives. I kind of wanted to test the waters and be able to look back with no regrets.”
Like Mast, Hinson is another of the multiple branches of the Self coaching tree.
Citing temporary decals and logos that may cause players to slip, the Men’s and Women’s Basketball Rules Committees are recommending a rules change that requires the court be “of a consistent surface” so student-athlete safety is not compromised.
The committees believe most surfaces already are in compliance, but no rule exists requiring a consistent surface. In some cases, temporary decals can create a difference on the floor that may cause players to lose their footing.
All rules proposal must be approved by the Playing Rules Oversight Panel, which is scheduled to meet via conference call June 12.
While this is a non-rules change year, committee members believe this change should be effective for the 2012-13 season for student-athlete safety purposes. The committees have asked NCAA staff to work with appropriate facility managers and court manufacturers to provide resources and best practices to the membership.
Florida State football coach Jimbo Fisher, before he spoke at the Seminole Club of Greater Orlando on Saturday, didn't exactly shoot down rumblings that FSU will explore the possibility of leaving the ACC for the Big 12.
"There have been no official talks, but I think you always have to look out there to see what's best for Florida State," Fisher said. "If that [jumping to the Big 12] is what's best for Florida State, then that's what we need to do."
…Don't kid yourself.
If the Big 12 offers big money, Chief Osceola would jump on Bevo and ride him bareback out of the ACC.
The only thing left behind would be the billowing smoke from his flaming spear.
“I want to assure you that any decision made about FSU athletics will be reasoned and thoughtful and based on athletics, finances and academics,” Barron wrote. “Allow me to provide you with some of the issues we are facing:”
Barron outlined four points made by those who support a move:
• The ACC is more of a basketball conference than a football league.
• The ACC is too North Carolina centric and the conference’s TV contract gives the stronger basketball schools an advantage.
• The Big 12’s powerful football schools are a better match for Florida State.
• The Big 12’s impending new TV contract might make Florida State $2.9 million more per year than the ACC’s new deal and Florida State needs the money.
Barron countered that the ACC shares its football and basketball revenue equally. The only revenue that is not shared equally is certain media rights for women’s basketball and Olympic sports, and that is to Florida State’s benefit.
He also points out that Colorado, Missouri, Nebraska and Texas A&M have left the Big 12 over the past two years because the conference does not share revenue equally.
Barron wrote the Big 12 is at least as Texas centered as the ACC is North Carolina centered and that the Texas schools are expected to play each other. He wrote that the “most likely scenario” leaves Florida State playing Kansas State, Kansas, Iowa State and West Virginia.
Florida State already has problems selling out its home games. Barron wrote that playing those schools would not cure that problem.
He also writes that the possible financial gains the school could make under the Big 12 TV contract might not be enough to make up for the cost of competing in that league.
Other FSU sports teams would have to make longer road trips and that could eat away any of the financial benefits of a better TV contract in the Big 12.
Barron also stated a move to the Big 12 could cost the school its rivalry game against Miami. Plus, “It will cost between $20-$25 million to leave the ACC — we have no idea where that money could come from.”
Lastly, he added: “The faculty are adamantly opposed to joining a league that is academically weaker ... “
“I present these issues to you so that you realize that this is not so simple (not to mention that negotiations aren’t even taking place),” Barron writes. “We can’t afford to have conference affiliation be governed by emotion — it has to be based on a careful assessment of athletics, finances and academics. I assure you that every aspect of conference affiliation will be looked at by this institution, but it must be a reasoned decision.”
Former Tennessee State men’s basketball Coach Nolan Richardson III, who brought a gun into Gentry Center to confront an assistant coach, has died at age 47.
Police in Tulsa, Okla., said Richardson — the son of former Arkansas and Tulsa men’s basketball coach Nolan Richardson — was found dead in his home.
…Officer Jason Willingham said Monday that Richardson III’s wife found her husband dead in a chair in their Tulsa home about 3 p.m. Sunday. A cause of death was not immediately released but Willingham said it appears to be due to natural causes.
Brian McLucas is the new Kenny Frease.
Allegedly, at least.
McLucas told Fox19 in Cincinnati on Sunday that he's a bouncer at PLAY nightclub downtown, and that he spent part of Saturday night getting beat up by undisclosed members from the same Cincinnati basketball program that famously fought with Xavier last season in a brawl that left Frease with a busted eye. McLucas' picture is on the Fox19 web site. His right eye is swollen shut because, he said, "a dude" took "three quick steps" and "punched [him] in the eye" after McLucas asked some Bearcats to leave a woman's VIP section.
A police report was filed Sunday.
We'll see where this goes from here.
But there's no denying the alleged incident could turn into another black eye for the program. Either way, it's already a swollen eye for one bouncer and a headache UC coach Mick Cronin didn't need this offseason.
UC athletic director Whit Babcock released a statement late Monday morning.
ACC/Big 10 Challenge matchups released
SI Luke Winn on Defending the three: A study of percentages and philosophies
2012-13 Early Season Events List
Milton Doyle to Kansas is "basically done," source tells @SNYtv. 6-3 athletic wing & former FIU commit. "Freakish athleticism," source says.
Before Milton Doyle left to visit Kansas on Monday morning, interest in the Marshall guard was waning.
Since he's been in Lawrence, Kan., his mother's cell phone hasn't stopped ringing.
Behold the power of Bill Self.
"Probably eight schools have called today," Lisa Green said. "It's crazy."
Landing at Kansas could make Doyle the biggest recruit in the Class of 2012; he probably already is the best recruiting story.
…Now a bunch of schools are suddenly interested, possibly in vain.
"Kansas is his dream school," Green said. "I told him if he likes it and they knock his socks off, I gave him the OK. He's not going to sign any papers, but he probably would give them a verbal. We'll see."
Cotton said the lanky Doyle, who is known for his slashing ability, “is a great player. If had played a little bit more and been out on the circuit a little bit more, he definitely could have played in the McDonald’s All-American game. He’s got natural talent. There is nothing that he can’t do on the floor. He can defend, he can pass, he can shoot it, he can drive to the basket and he can create for others, he can make people around him better and he can make himself better.”
Doyle, who last month scored 20 points in the Chicago Public League all-star game, is unranked nationally by Rivals.com. He missed his entire junior season after transferring from Chicago Tilden to Chicago Marshall because of a broken wrist. He did not play AAU ball in July last year, instead concentrating on his academic work.
…Noted ILprepbullseye.com: “(He is) a stellar athlete who was among top five players in Chicago Public League based on performance this past season. Excels at slashing and has a tremendous mid-range game.”
His mom figures KU will land a commitment.
“I would say that it’s his choice. Kansas has already offered a scholarship, but he wanted to go see the school and see how things are at Kansas,” she said. “Milton just wants to spend a little time at Kansas and see what it’s all about. Kansas will be his third official visit (besides FIU, Bradley), so he’s got two visits left. My guess is he’s going to be sold on Kansas, so I don’t think he’ll use his final two visits, but I don’t know for sure.”
KU is also awaiting word from University of South Carolina sophomore Damontre Harris, a 6-9 forward who is down to KU and Florida. Anrio Adams, a 6-3 senior combo guard from Seattle’s Rainier Beach High, said again this week he plans to arrive at KU in June for summer school. He’s committed to KU, but has not yet signed a letter-of-intent as he awaits his latest standardized test score.
“I Will Be Wearing #2 For Kansas! This Year,” Adams wrote on Facebook on Monday.
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