Kansas senior guard Svi Mykhailiuk scored a team-leading 25 points on Saturday in Team Ukraine’s 92-79 loss to Lithuania in the opening game of the FIBA Under 20 European Championships in Crete.
The 6-foot-8 Mykhailiuk, a native of Cherkasy, Ukraine, hit 8 of 17 shots. He was 5 of 13 on three-pointers and 4 of 5 from the free-throw line. He also had six rebounds, four assists, six turnovers and three steals in 35 minutes.
Ukraine will meet Latvia in Group C pool play on Sunday. Latvia lost to Israel 90-54 on Saturday in its first game of the tourney, which runs until July 23.
KU offers Penn-Johnson
Kansas has offered a scholarship to Bryan Penn-Johnson, a 7-foot, 215-pound senior center from Wasatch Academy in Mount Pleasant, Utah, Zagsblog.com reported on Saturday. Penn-Johnson is the No. 81-rated player in the recruiting Class of 2018 according to Rivals.com. The Las Vegas native is considering KU, California, UCLA, Arizona, Washington and others.
“I feel like my defense is the focus point in my game,” Penn-Johnson told Cal.rivals.com. “I’m a lock down defender and a rim protector. Knowing my role, I pride myself on running and blocking. I can assure you I average the most transition paint touches in big men, so I feel like I fit with a team that runs and defends.”
The ESPN.com scouting report on Penn-Johnson states that “Bryan Penn-Johnson is an elite lefty shot blocker with an astounding standing reach of 9 feet, 9 inches, with a 7-6 1/2 wingspan. Penn-Johnson has the length, timing and touch to play the center position at the highest level.
“When motivated, Penn-Johnson has the ability to run rim to rim, play physical and contest shots at a rapid rate. Penn-Johnson has shown he can face up and knock down the 15 footer with an occasional pick and pop knockdown three. Penn-Johnson also has the ability to drop step dunk through contact and finish with length above the rim. Penn-Johnson has the intangibles, work ethic and touch to be an immediate impact player on the block and high post at the high major level.”
Bagley rumor addressed by dad
The father of Marvin Bagley on Friday night addressed CBSsports.com’s report that Marvin is considering playing college basketball this season instead of remaining in the recruiting Class of 2018 where he is ranked No. 1 nationally.
“Ask the guy who started the rumor,” Bagley’s dad told Eric Bossi of Rivals.com when asked about his son moving to the Class of 2017. “He obviously knows more about it than we do.”
Gary Parrish was the CBS reporter to indicate Bagley was thinking about the immediate move to college.
“We have to take a player and his family’s word for things, so it’s full steam ahead considering Bagley as a 2018 prospect,” Bossi wrote Saturday. “On top of that, we do know that Bagley has a visit to Duke coming up and that he said at the Peach Jam that Arizona and USC visits will be set up.” The 6-foot-10 senior from Sierra Canyon High in Chatsworth, Calif., also is considering KU, Kentucky, UCLA and Arizona State.
More on Black signing, foundation
Former KU power forward Tarik Black agreed to a one-year, $3.29 million contract with the Houston Rockets on Friday, the same day he held his first-ever “Righteous Revolution” rally in his hometown of Memphis.
Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland attended the rally, according to Memphis NBC TV-station WMC. The rally was designed to inspire Memphis residents to make the city a better place to live.
“Well, I’d like to say to the community to get involved, to help out,” Black told the TV station. “We all talk about having a better Memphis. We all talk about the potential this city has, but we all know with potential, it takes hard work to reach and we’ve talked about it long enough. Now it’s time to act on it.”
Black, 25, earlier in the week held his first “Transformation50 Basketball & Life Skills Camp” for underprivileged inner city youth. Spots at the camp were paid for by Black’s new Tarik Black Foundation.
“The mission is to provide life skills to inner city youth so they can come back and better their own communities,” Black told the Memphis Commercial Appeal. “In the bigger picture, we want to run programs where we can take kids out of Memphis so they can see a different city. It opened my eyes that in Memphis I didn’t get to quite learn these things because I wasn’t around these people. We have people here that are very affluent but how often do we see them in the city? How often do they show their faces? How often do they teach us things and give back and reach out? I feel obligated to reach out and give back and take everything I’ve learned to give back and teach that.”
As far as Friday’s basketball transaction, the Houston Chronicle’s Jonathan Feigen said the Rockets “used their bi-annual exception to bring back Black as a third center in the role Montrezl Harrell played last season. Harrell, who went to the Clippers in the deal for Chris Paul, played when Nene was given games off or when Nene or Clint Capela were out with injuries.”
Black played for the Los Angeles Lakers the past 2 1/2 seasons after opening his career with the Rockets for 25 games in his rookie season — the 2014-15 campaign.
It was unclear as of Saturday if former Kansas forward Nick Collison, 36, plans on playing more than one more season. He agreed to a one-year deal on Friday to remain with the Oklahoma City Thunder for a 15th campaign.
“With little tear on his body in the last three seasons — never playing more than 66 games — there’s no reason to think he’d stop,” wrote Erik Horne of the Oklahoman. “Shams Charania (of The Vertical) reported that Collison’s deal will allow him ‘to play 15 seasons with one team before retirement.’ A source close to Collison told The Oklahoman in July he’d like to play at least one more year,” Horne added.
Collison told The Star at the KU-Oklahoma game in Norman last year he’d like to continue playing as long as he’s healthy and feels as if he can still contribute to a team.