Kansas coach Bill Self has tapped into the Kansas City area to find his latest walk-on.
Clay Young, a graduate of Lansing High and former standout at Kansas City, Kan., Community College, will join the KU men’s basketball program for the 2015-16 season, Self announced on Wednesday.
Young, who is listed at 6 feet 5 and 205 pounds, averaged 10.0 points and 5.6 rebounds as a freshman at KCKCC in 2013-14. He suffered a torn ACL at the beginning of the 2014-15 season and was granted a medical redshirt. At KCKCC, Young played for former Oklahoma standout Kelley Newton, who helped facilitate the move to KU.
“We found out about Clay through his junior college coach, Kelly Newton,” Self said. “(Assistant coach) Norm (Roberts) and I recruited Kelley hard when we were at Tulsa and he was at Neosho (County) Community College.
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“We stayed in touch and he told us all along he had a young man that wanted to go to KU and would do anything to be a part of the program. We brought Clay over in the spring and we liked him. He’s a nice young man who does well academically and is fitting in very well.”
Before attending KCKCC, Young was a four-year starter at Lansing, where he was an all-state player and averaged nine points and six rebounds per game as a senior.
“I’ve been a KU fan all my life and I thought (after KCKCC) if I had a chance to walk-on at a big-time program, it would be Kansas,” Young said. “Coach Newton and I started talking to the (KU) coaches in March about being a walk-on. I found out in July it was going to be a real thing.”
The Jayhawks had an opening for a walk-on spot after the graduation of walk-on Christian Garrett. Young will join two other walk-ons currently on the roster — redshirt junior guard Tyler Self and senior guard Evan Manning.
“I know my role as a walk-on,” Young added. “I’m going to push the guys as much as possible and be the best teammate I can be.”