San Diego State coach Steve Fisher was mighty peeved at Kansas coach Bill Self when recruit Kevin Young changed his mind last week about his commitment to the Aztecs and chose the Jayhawks instead.
Fisher might be downright furious now.
Kansas also signed Mervyn Lindsay, an AAU teammate of Young, a player who seemingly isn’t as skilled as Young or many of the other recruits Kansas typically signs. According to a story by Mark Zeigler of the San Diego Union Tribune, Lindsay didn’t have any D-I scholarship offers in November and was a good, not great player in high school. He wasn’t tabbed one of the top players in Riverside and San Bernadino counties and didn’t earn a rating from Scout.com.
So what changed in the last few months? Lindsay and Young’s AAU coach, Elvert “Kool-Aid” Perry played a key role in both players heading to Lawrence as a “package deal.” As Zeigler notes, it’s not against NCAA rules, but helps explain why Young might have had the sudden change of heart.
That’s not the usual package deal that irritates fans or coaches — that usually involves a player and a coach — but they’re fairly common.
And Lindsay? Hey, he’s elated to attend Kansas.
“Everything just happened so fast,” Lindsay told the Kansas City Star. “My freshman year, everybody said they wanted to go to Kansas. But at a certain point, you’ve got to be more realistic with yourself. If you asked me three years ago would I be at Kansas, I’m like, no. But now that it’s happening, I guess it’s meant to be.”
He’s not the only one. Self says Lindsay, who’s only 17, would’ve been viewed as a top 30 player in the class of 2012. Kansas merely got a good shooter ahead of schedule.
Self pulled out all the stops to ensure Kansas – which loses six players from last year’s 35-win team – snagged some prizes in the late-signing period. But it wasn’t until Young and Lindsay committed that he was finally happy with the results.
“To be quite honest, I was disappointed in our class up until about two weeks ago,” he told the Lawrence Journal-World. “Our class is really good. Jamari and Braeden … those are good players, and Naadir is better than anybody knows, and Ben is as good a wing prospect or big guard prospect as there is in the country. I’m really excited about the class and think it will be a fun class to coach.”
No wonder Fisher’s mad. Self salvaged Kansas’ class by any means necessary.
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