University of Kansas

Former Iowa guard Isaiah Moss picks Arkansas; KU still pursuing Achiuwa, R.J. Hampton

Looking at the Jayhawks 2019-20 recruiting class

These are the players in the 2019-20 class that have signed, or are being recruited, by the University of Kansas Jayhawks.
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These are the players in the 2019-20 class that have signed, or are being recruited, by the University of Kansas Jayhawks.

Former Iowa combo guard Isaiah Moss, who made an official recruiting visit to Kansas on Sunday through Tuesday, has decided to continue his basketball career at Arkansas, he reported Wednesday on Twitter.

Moss, a 6-foot-5 graduate transfer and graduate of Chicago’s Simeon High, visited Arkansas over the weekend, prior to the trip to KU. Moss had not received a scholarship offer from KU on his trip, according to a source.

His dad, Mike, recently told 247sports.com that Moss had a list of KU, Arkansas, Oregon and Arizona State.

CBS Sports’ Jon Rothstein has said Moss also heard from Cincinnati, Iowa State, Louisville and several Big Ten schools. DePaul, Pitt and Rhode Island were on his original list of schools during his senior year at Simeon High.

“I want to thank all the coaches that have taken the time to show interest in me. I feel truly blessed to have experienced this whole process,” Moss wrote on Twitter. “I want to thank my family and friends for being with me during this time and providing me with the best support. With that being said, I have decided to continue my athletic and educational pursuits at the University of Arkansas and I look forward to my future as a Razorback!”

Moss has been a three-year starter at Iowa. He averaged 9.2 points, 2.9 rebounds and 1.8 assists a game last season. He hit 39.9 percent of his shots, including 48 of 114 threes for 42.1 percent. Moss had 62 assists against 49 turnovers. He hit 79.1 percent of his free throws. Moss, who had 32 steals, started all 35 games and logged 24.1 minutes per contest.

Achiuwa announcement coming soon

Precious Achiuwa, a 6-foot-9, 215-pound senior power forward from Montverde Academy in Florida, who is ranked No. 17 in the Class of 2019 by Rivals.com, has said he will announce his college choice this weekend after visiting with family members in the Bronx, New York. He has not yet provided an exact time or date for his impending announcement.

Zagsblog.com reported on Wednesday that Achiuwa has eliminated North Carolina, UConn and Georgia and is down to two schools — KU and Memphis. Some recruiting analysts, however, have said North Carolina is still in the mix.

Achiuwa played at St. Benedict’s Prep in New Jersey his junior year of high school before transferring to Montverde, where he averaged 15 points a game last season. He has a brother, God’sgift Achiuwa, who played basketball at St. John’s. Achiuwa is originally from Nigeria.

Wilson in wait and see mode

Michigan signee Jalen Wilson, a 6-8 senior small forward from Guyer High in Denton, Texas, who is ranked No. 47 in the recruiting Class of 2019 by Rivals.com, sounds as if he may wait until the Wolverines name a new head coach before deciding whether to ask out of his letter-of-intent and reopen his recruiting.

Wilson is a good friend of R.J. Hampton, a 6-5 senior point guard from Little Elm (Texas) High, who is expected to announce soon for either KU, Memphis, Kentucky or Texas Tech.

“I don’t want to make any moves quite yet,” Wilson told the Denton Record-Chronicle. “I just want to stay patient and see what happens. I don’t ever believe in making decisions really fast that are based on emotion, so it’s just about staying patient right now. Whatever happens, happens.

“I’m going to see who (UM) is thinking about getting,” Wilson added to the Record-Chronicle. “When they (new coaches) do come in, I want to see how they feel about me and my game to really just make sure everything is in line.”

Wilson considered Kansas, Marquette, Baylor, UCLA and Oklahoma State before signing with Michigan back in November of 2018. He actually was named after former Michigan standout Jalen Rose. There has been some speculation he might be interested in playing basketball at KU with his buddy, Hampton, if he decides to reopen his recruitment.

“I’m not mad because I know what he did was for him and it’s a great opportunity,” Wilson said of former Michigan coach John Beilein this week taking the Cleveland Cavaliers job. “But I was shocked. JaKobe (Coles, Guyer High junior) called me, and I really didn’t believe him. But then my mom came in with the news and said the same thing and I went to ESPN and saw it was true,” he added to the Denton newspaper.

Wilson averaged 18.1 points, 7.5 rebounds and 3.0 assists a game for Guyer last season. His friend, Hampton, is ranked No. 6 in the recruiting class of 2019 by Rivals.com.

The Jayhawks have several scholarships to award for the upcoming 2019-20 season. Scholarship players who at this time are expected to be on the 2019-20 roster: Udoka Azubuike, Marcus Garrett, Ochai Agbaji, David McCormack and Mitch Lightfoot, as well as signees Christian Braun, Issac McBride and Tristan Enaruna. Also, freshman point guard Devon Dotson is testing the NBA waters, but there is a strong possibility he will return to school.

Freshman Quentin Grimes and junior Dedric Lawson are expected to remain in the NBA Draft. Soph Silvio De Sousa has said he remove his name from the draft pool if he wins an eligibility appeal with the NCAA. KU would have three scholarships left to give if De Sousa and Dotson both return to KU, more if one or both leave.

NBA Draft talk

Former KU forward Lawson will be selected No. 45 overall in the two-round, 60-player 2019 NBA Draft according to ESPN.com’s Jonathan Givony, who released his first post-lottery mock draft on Wednesday.

Lawson, 6-foot-9, 235 pounds from Memphis — he elected to turn pro after his junior campaign — will be the second-round pick of the Detroit Pistons, Givony says. Sports Illustrated, which also released a mock draft Wednesday, has Lawson the 59th overall pick of the draft — to Toronto.

Lawson was the only KU player named in those two mock drafts. Other Jayhawks who have entered the draft: Dotson, Grimes, De Sousa and graduate Lagerald Vick.

CBSsports.com’s Gary Parrish had no Jayhawks taken in his post-lottery mock draft, which included just first-round predictions. Underclassmen have until May 29 to remove their name from the draft if they wish to return to college.

Jackson to be dealt by Suns?

Former KU guard Josh Jackson of the Phoenix Suns could be traded following his weekend arrest at a South Florida music festival, Phoenix radio personality John Gambadoro stated this week.

He indicated the Sacramento Kings and New York Knicks may have interest in acquiring Jackson.

“It’s not a talent thing,” Gambadoro said during his Monday radio show as reported by the Sacramento Bee. “The kid’s got a ton of talent. It’s just the Suns enabled him from the start (since drafting him No. 4 overall in 2017) and it’s more about the type of person he is, the type of player he is. They know he’s super talented, but it might be time for a new start.

“I think the Knicks would have interest in him. I think Sacramento would have interest in him. There may be other teams. Now, you put into play what happened over the weekend ... There is no questioning this kid’s talent. He is talented, but talent is not enough. He’s not a smart person. He’s not a smart player,” Gambadoro added as reported by the Bee.

Jackson, 22, averaged 11.9 points a game on 41.3 percent shooting in 79 games last season. He hit 32.4 percent of his threes and 67.1 percent of his free throws. For his two-year career he’s a 29.4 percent three-point marksman. According to the Bee, he shot 42.1 percent from three in March and 40 percent in April.

“He’s a pain in the neck, but can (new Phoenix coach) Monty Williams fix him?” Gambadoro said as reported by the Bee.

Jackson faces a felony charge of escape and a misdemeanor charge of resisting arrest following the incident Friday at the Rolling Loud music festival in Miami. Police say Jackson attempted to enter a VIP area several times without a VIP pass. Jackson allegedly attempted to run away after being handcuffed by police, but officers were able to catch him. A hearing is scheduled for June 10.

Jackson, by the way, has two years remaining on his rookie contract. He’ll be paid $7.1 million in 2019-20 and $8.9 million in 2020-21.

“That and his future as a high-motor competitor on defense in theory makes him a no-brainer to keep,” writes Kevin Zimmerman of Arizonasports.com. “Yet his wild inefficiencies and inability to learn from successes and failures alike sure parallel his continued missteps off the court.

“How is it that such an amazing athlete shoots 47% around the rim, 10% worse than the league average? He could be forgiven if he truly bought in to becoming the team’s defensive ace. Jackson ranks in the bottom-40 among about 500 NBA players who each qualified for NET rating, true shooting percentage and turnover ratio, yet he was 86th last season in usage percentage,” Zimmerman adds.

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