Friday, November 15th, 2013 at 4:31 pm  |  4 responses

Five-Star Recruit Cliff Alexander Chooses Kansas Over Illinois

Just minutes after fellow Chicagoan and 2014 prospect Jahlil Okafor announced his commitment to Duke live on ESPNU, another top ranked big man, Cliff Alexander, made his college decision at a press conference from his school’s gymnasium. Looking at the camera, the 6-9 big announced, “After careful consideration, I’ve decided to continue my education at the University of Kansas.” As to what head coach Bill Self said that sold him on joining the Jayhawks program: “That he’s going to coach me and get me where I want to be,” he answered. The decision didn’t come without drama. Alexander reached for the Illinois hat in front of him while making his announcement, before pulling a pump fake and grabbing the blue Kansas Jayhawks hat — giving his hometown school a false sense of joy for a quick second.

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  • Enigmatic

    OUCH. And so the trend of top HS basketball recruits from Chicago heading out of state continues (Jabari Parker – Duke, Anthony Davis – Kentucky, Derrick Rose – Memphis, etc.).

    At least with Okafor, he had already long eliminated all in-state choices, but for Illini fans this one’s gotta hurt. And gives them even more of a reason to hate Bill Self.

    On another note, Alexander is still very young so I can’t bash him too much for this, but probably not a smooth move to say he was going to continue his “education” at Kansas, and then say Bill Self is going to get him where he “wants to be.” One quickly assumes he’s basically saying the NBA is where he wants to be, and Self is the best choice under which to continue his basketball education. Again, not a big deal, the kid is young and deserves a break, but nobody really believes he’s going to Kansas for academic purposes, and that’s fine. But the detractors will jump all over those quotes.

  • Enigmatic

    Also, everybody killing this kid over that hat switch thing needs to chill. Cats are out there wishing he tears an ACL and whatnot. Relax. He’s a kid!

  • 3Chainz

    Just to name a few more sellouts…Dewayne Wade, Wayne Blackshear, Ryan Boatright, Keita Bates-Diop, Keita Bates-Diop, AND yes I copied and paste names because they are useless.

  • Enigmatic

    I wouldn’t categorize D. Wade as a “sellout.” Marquette was the only big time program that wanted him before his senior year, and when he semi-blew up during his senior year and other schools jumped on the bandwagon, he wanted to stay loyal to the program that wanted him first.

    Boatright was from Aurora, but I feel you.