Wayne Selden

Wayne Selden practicing despite ankle sprain

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Kansas junior guard Wayne Selden began the first week off practice still nursing an injury.

Selden suffered an ankle sprain several weeks ago, and while he has been seen wearing a boot, he has continued to practice with the Jayhawks according to Gary Bedore of KUSports.com

“He has an ankle sprain,” Kansas head coach Bill Self said. “The only reason he is in a boot is to immobilize it when walking around. He has been practicing, yes. He’s not 100 percent, though. He sprained it three weeks ago. We are hopeful by the end of the week he’ll be much closer to full speed. He should be fine in a week or so.”

The 6-foot-5 Selden is coming off a sophomore slump, averaging 9.4 points and shooting below 40 percent from the field during the 2014-15 season. However, he is coming off a dominating performance this summer at the World University Games in Korea, leading the Team USA in scoring at 19.3 points per game en route to the gold medal.

Kansas begins the 2015-16 against Northern Colorado on Nov. 13. The home opener is followed by a meeting with Michigan State on Nov. 17 at the Champions Classic in Chicago.

Kansas/USA rolls past Switzerland in World University Games group play finale

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One night after wrapping up a spot in the quarterfinal round of the World University Games with a one-point win over Serbia, Kansas/United States took on Switzerland in its final group play match Wednesday night in Gwangju, South Korea. And Bill Self’s team didn’t have much trouble with the Swiss either, scoring 12 of the game’s first 15 points and going on to win by the final score of 96-57.

The leading scorer for the Americans was one of the two players on the roster who will not suit up for the Jayhawks this coming season in guard Julian DeBose, who plays his college basketball at FGCU. The rising senior led the way with 18 points on 8-for-11 shooting to go along with four rebounds.

DeBose was one of four players to score in double figures, with Wayne Selden tallying 16 points and Perry Ellis and LaGerald Vick adding 11 apiece. Vick also grabbed a team-high seven rebounds. Nic Moore, who was the American Athletic Conference Player of the Year at SMU last season, dished out six assists with Kansas’ Frank Mason III racking up five himself.

The Americans shot 59 percent from the field (which includes a 5-for-16 fourth quarter), and one night after struggling mightily from beyond the arc against Serbia they rebounded to shoot 10-for-17 from three. Next up for Self’s team will be Lithuania in Friday’s quarterfinal round.

Kansas downs Canada in final exhibition before 2015 World University Games (VIDEO)

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Kansas defeated Canada, 87-76, on Friday night at the Sprint Center in Kansas City, Missouri, serving as the team’s final exhibition game before the Jayhawks travel to South Korea for the 2015 World University Games.

Wayne Selden finished with a double-double of 22 points and 10 boards. Frank Mason added 15 points and dished 11 assists while committing just two turnovers.

Kansas, representing the USA in the global event, defeated Canada in an exhibition game earlier this week at the Sprint Center. In both games, the Jayhawks fell behind by double-digits.

It was a lot like last game,” Kansas head coach Bill Self said following Friday night’s game. “I think we got down like eight or nine points in the last game (10) and 10 points tonight. Our starters looked great, if you were to look at our point differential from our starters compared to our subs, I bet our starters were plus 25 or 30 and our reserves didn’t play as well tonight until Hunter [Mickelson] sparked us and Carlton [Bragg, Jr.] did some things there late. I thought it was a pretty good game, Wayne [Selden, Jr.] player great. Perry [Ellis] was good. Frank [Mason III] was really good again. Nic [Moore] was good. We need those four to play and we need everyone else to be solid and we will have a chance to maybe win a few games over there.”

The 2015 World University Games begin July 3 in Gwangju, South Korea. The first game for Kansas will be against Turkey on July 4.

The roster includes SMU’s Nic Moore and Florida Gulf Coast’s Julian DeBose.

Kansas guard Wayne Selden to return for junior season

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With freshmen Kelly Oubre Jr. and Cliff Alexander having decided to enter the 2015 NBA Draft, Kansas still needed decisions from sophomore guard Wayne Selden and junior forward Perry Ellis. Friday afternoon Selden made his decision, as the school announced that Selden will return to Lawrence for his junior season.

Selden was an honorable mention All-Big 12 selection this season, averaging 9.4 points and 2.6 assists per game, and he was also selected to the league’s all-tournament team for his play at the Big 12 tournament in Kansas City. A five-star recruit out of high school, Selden has decided that there’s more work to be done in Lawrence before moving on to the professional ranks.

RELATED: Who’s going, staying or undecided in regards to the NBA Draft?

“A lot of good things are coming up for KU and I want to be a part of that,” Selden said in the release. “We’re going to represent the USA at the World (University) Games this summer. We’re moving into new dorms (McCarthy Hall) before school starts and we’re playing in Maui (Hawaii) next year.”

Kansas won 27 games and an 11th consecutive Big 12 regular season title in 2014-15, but for the second consecutive season the Jayhawks didn’t get past the first weekend of the NCAA tournament. Ellis’ decision regarding the NBA Draft is the only one that Kansas is waiting for at this point, and if he returns the Jayhawks will once again be in the mix atop the Big 12 (two-time Big 12 tournament champion Iowa State, and Oklahoma should also be there).

In addition to Selden, guards Frank Mason III, Devonte’ Graham and Brannen Greene and forwards Jamari Traylor, Landen Lucas and Hunter Mickelson will be back next season. The Jayhawks will add five-star forward Carlton Bragg to the front court, and they’re also still in the mix for five-star big man Stephen Zimmerman.

New Year’s Resolutions: Kansas Jayhawks

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Cliff Alexander (AP Photo)

Conference play is right around the corner, so over the course of the next two weeks, College Basketball Talk will be detailing what some of the country’s best, most intriguing, and thoroughly enigmatic teams should resolve to do with the New Year right around the corner. What can we say, we’re in a giving mood. Thank Jessica Simpson.

MORE: The rest of our New Year’s Resolutions | Midseason catchups

KANSAS PROMISES TO: Play their best players the majority of the minutes.

  • It will happen because: Bill Self isn’t stupid. He hasn’t won a decade’s worth of consecutive Big 12 titles by accident. He’s as good of a coach as there is in the country, and he understands what he needs to get out of his guys if the Jayhawks are going to be real Final Four contenders. If that means that he has to limit minutes early on for guys like Cliff Alexander and Kelly Oubre while he drives home the importance of things like offensive execution and attention to detail defensively, than that’s what he’ll do. Remember, Kansas has not yet played their best, and they’ve beaten Utah, Michigan State, Florida and Georgetown in D.C.
  • But it might not because: There’s no guarantee that those guys ever get to a place where they’re as good as they’re expected to be. These are college freshmen, 19-year olds that have a long, long way to go in their basketball careers. Rome wasn’t built in a day, and neither was Wayne Selden’s left-hand, Alexander’s awareness or Oubre’s knowledge of defensive rotations. This is a by-product of recruiting guys that will only be on campus for a year or two.

KANSAS ALSO SWEARS THEY WON’T: Continue to get beaten up in the paint.

  • It will happen because: Maybe you hadn’t noticed, but one of the biggest issues that Kansas has had this season has been the play of their big men around the rim. Some stats: They’re 310th nationally in how often their two-points attempts get blocked (13.5 percent), they’re 287th in the country in two-point field goal percentage and they’re allowing opponents to grab 30.5 percent of the available offensive rebounds. With the number of title contenders with powerful front lines, that’s a concern, one Self will no doubt make a point of emphasis. Alexander’s growth should help in that regard.
  • But it might not because: As good as Perry Ellis and Alexander are, they’re never going to be as bigas opposing front lines. At some point, it is what it is, which is why Self has publicly discussed playing someone like Oubre, Brannen Greene or Svi Mykhailiuk at the four. If you’re going to get beat up inside, you might as well tryto create mismatches at the other end of the floor while you’re at it.

No. 11 Kansas erases an 18-point deficit to beat Florida

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Last season, Florida used its marquee non-conference matchup against Kansas as the starting point of a 30-game winning streak, a run that led the Gators to the 2014 Final Four. More than midway through Friday night’s game against No. 11 Kansas, that result from a season ago looked like it’d be replicated.

The Gators led by 15 at half, with a lead as large as 18 points in the second. However, that 15-point halftime edge turned into a 71-65 win for Kansas, with the Jayhawks outscoring the Gators 47-26 in the second half.

Florida was able to move the ball on offense, assisting on 11 of 15 field goals in the first half and shooting 54 percent from the field. The Gators were also aided by Kansas turnovers, nine total in the first half.

The Jayhawks elected not to walk through the second half as they did the first. They tightened up defensively, holding Florida to only 35 percent shooting over the final 20 minutes, and got a lift offensively from Wayne Selden and Cliff Alexander. The duo scored the first eight points in what turned out to be a 17-0 Kansas run, giving the Jayhawks a 58-52 advantage.

Selden was miserable from the field down in the Orlando Classic, 27 points (7-of-25 shooting) in the three games, albeit three wins. On Friday night, he went for a season-high 21 points, 14 of which came after halftime. He was aggressive getting his 6-foot-5, 230-pound frame into the lane, which helped set up his jumper. He knocked down a step-back shot from the top of the key, while also connecting on a pair 3-pointers. Alexander finished with his first double-double — 12 points and 10 rebounds — of his collegiate career. Bill Self’s other heralded freshman Kelly Oubre had two points in limited action again.

While the collapse hands the Gators their fourth loss — more than all of 2013-14 — some positives can be taken away from the defeat for Florida, which only dressed seven scholarship players with Eli Carter out for Friday’s game. They saw better production from Chris Walker, who finished with 12 points and five boards in 15 minutes.

The Jayhawks will look to avoid a slow start on Wednesday, and they’ll have to be. Kansas travels to the Nation’s Capital to pay Georgetown, a team talented enough to be ranked, and one that is looking for a key out-of-conference win after nearly upsetting No. 2 Wisconsin in the Battle 4 Atlantis and given that its win over Florida in the same event doesn’t hold the same weight at the moment.

Florida, on the other hand, welcomes in Yale on Monday. The Gators don’t want to be  another upset victory for the Ivy League contender.