Kansas reloaded its future backcourt on Friday as five-star point guard Devon Dotson pledged to the Jayhawks.
The 6-foot-1 native of Charlotte is considered the No. 17 overall prospect in the national Class of 2018, according to Rivals. An aggressive, attacking guard who likes to play downhill, Dotson should step in and contribute immediately for Kansas, especially since the Jayhawks could be losing both Devonte’ Graham and Malik Newman after this season.
Even if Kansas loses this season’s starting backcourt, head coach Bill Self now has reinforcements in Dotson and Cal transfer Charlie Moore, a former four-star lead guard who is sitting out this season due to NCAA transfer regulations.
Not only does Self have the two-point guard lineup that he’s liked using lately, but Dotson and Moore compliment each other pretty well. While Dotson is aggressive getting to the rim and setting up others, Moore is a very talented spot-up shooter who can either wait on the perimeter once Dotson drives or attack off the bounce on his own when he gets the ball.
The combination of Dotson and Moore, the Lawson brothers, five-star forward Silvio de Sousa and four-star center David McCormack already gives the Jayhawks six talented pieces for next season as Kansas already has the makings of a very strong roster — especially when you don’t consider returning pieces.
Dotson’s commitment has another interesting angle for Kansas, since the North Carolina-native is close with five-star forward and YouTube sensation Zion Williamson. Teammates for the final AAU event of the summer in Las Vegas, Dotson will undoubtedly be in Williamson’s ear to join him in Lawrence next season. Williamson has already taken an official visit to Kansas as he continues his tour of programs.
Texas landed its third commitment in the Class of 2018 on Friday as fast-rising forward Jaxson Hayes pledged to the Longhorns.
A native of Cincinnati, the 6-foot-9 Hayes exploded as a high-major recruit this summer as he selected the Longhorns over a visit to Xavier and a recent scholarship offer to Kentucky. A late-blooming forward who had a late growth spurt, Hayes has good speed and mobility for his size as he becomes an intriguing prospect at the college level thanks to his 7-foot-3 wingspan. Hayes is the son of Cincinnati Bengals tight ends coach Jonathan Hayes.
Hayes joins four-star wing Gerald Liddell and three-star Brock Cunningham in the Texas Class of 2018 recruiting haul. The group brings a lot of size and athleticism to the Texas frontcourt.
Kansas head coach Bill Self was enshrined in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame on Friday night.
Leading off the night’s festivities as the first speaker, the 54-year-old Self gave a solid speech detailing his family, friends and rise through the coaching ranks at stops including Oral Roberts, Tulsa, Illinois and Kansas.
Self has helped the Jayhawks to 13 consecutive Big 12 regular season championships a national championship and two Final Four appearances.
Brought to the stage by former boss and Hall of Famer Larry Brown, Self thanked numerous coaches, former players and family during his speech, including moments reflecting on working for Leonard Hamilton and Eddie Sutton. North Carolina head coach Roy Williams also had a brief video praising Self for his career achievements.
Among the personal highlights Self included were his playing days at Oklahoma State, including a shoutout to former colleague and San Antonio Spurs general manager R.C. Buford. Self also reflected on his parents, sister, wife, daughter and son, talking at one point about the past five years with his son Tyler playing for him at Kansas.
One of 11 inductees on the night, Self is the fifth Hall of Fame coach from the University of Kansas, joining James Naismith, Phog Allen, Larry Brown and Roy Williams. Of the eight head coaches in the history of Kansas men’s basketball, five have now been inducted into the Hall of Fame.
West Virginia will be without freshman guard Brandon Knapper for the start of the season after he underwent knee surgery to repair a torn meniscus.
According to a release from the school, the 6-foot-0 guard had surgery on his right knee on Friday.
“Brandon has been looking forward to putting on a WVU uniform for years now,” West Virginia head coach Bob Huggins said in the release. “We have all the confidence in Brandon that he will work diligently to get back on the court as soon as possible.”
Regarded as a three-star prospect coming out of high school, Knapper spent last season at Hargrave Military Academy as he was expected to be a backup to veterans like Jevon Carter and Daxter Miles Jr. this season. Committed to the Mountaineers since September of 2014, Knapper is one of five freshmen joining the West Virginia roster this season.
West Virginia currently sits at No. 11 in the CBT preseason top 25 as they’re expected to be a major competitor in the Big 12 title race this season.
Texas earned its first Class of 2018 commitment on Friday as four-star forward Brock Cunningham pledged to the Longhorns.
Sitting at just outside the top 100 in the Rivals Class of 2018 national rankings at No. 109, the 6-foot-7 Cunningham is a high-motor forward who regularly put up double-doubles during both the high school and grassroots seasons.
As a junior, Cunningham put up 14.7 points and 11.3 rebounds per game for Austin Westlake High School as he is staying local to play in the Big 12. Also productive playing in the adidas Gauntlet, Cunningham has an intriguing skill level that continued to expand as the spring and summer wore on.
This is a quality start to the 2018 class from head coach Shaka Smart, as he continues to recruit the state of Texas hard while also maintaining a focus on national recruiting.
Texas Tech has stayed active on the recruiting trail the last few days as they’ve reeled in two commitments for next season.
The Red Raiders brought in junior college wing Deshawn Corprew and Italian point guard Davide Moretti in recent days as they’ve added more depth to their backcourt for next season.
The 6-foot-5 Corprew is intriguing because he is a former top-100 national prospect who has three years of eligibility remaining. If Corprew can make an impact then Texas Tech might have themselves a rugged and physical guard who can
The 6-foot-3 Moretti made a name for himself at the FIBA U18 European Championships in 2016 as he’ll have a chance to earn minutes at point. Moretti put up 14.9 points, 5.0 assists and shot 45 percent from three-point range during that FIBA event last summer, so if he shoots the ball like that, he could also see time as another floor spacer for the Red Raiders.
Texas Tech has a chance to be an intriguing team next season thanks to their depth and some new additions.