Not too long ago, Kansas fans were jubilant at their loaded lineup featuring a pair of 6'9" and 6'10 forwards, the Morris brothers, a veteran at the point guard in Tyshawn Taylor and a bevy of shooters to spot up on the wing to take pressure in the low blocks. And then there was Josh Selby. Perhaps the most hyped recruit in all of last year's class and rightfully so for the 6'3" McDonalds' All-American guard. His relentless attacking nature on the offensive end had every college coach in the country after him and NBA front offices ready to slot him into their backcourts. He averaged 32 points per game as a senior at his Baltimore High School.
To add to the excitement, Kansas steamrolled through its first nine game while Selby sat on the sidelines with an NCAA suspension. The Jayhawks put up more than 87 points of offense without their starting 2-guard and fans were eager to see the juggernaut that would form when Selby joined the lineup on December 18th against USC at home. He didn't start, but he received a raucous applause and a "Free Selby" chant when he entered the game. Selby played off the ball the entire game and scored a game-high 21 points, including the go-ahead 3-pointer with 26 seconds left.
It was nigh-impossible to think that this would be the high point of Selby's season. But it was. He never hit the 20-point plateau again and struggled with shooting and turnovers which plagued his production and draft stock. We wondered if Selby was the offensive machine he once was. Could he still even be a first round pick after lottery-bound hype? An injured foot put Selby back on the sideline and he never appeared the same.
His long, drawn out freshman season resulted in 8 points, 2 assists and 2 turnovers a game, all while shooting 37 percent from the field, clearly the most disappointing player in our eyes all season long. We felt that because of his production and feel for the game or lack thereof, Selby's potential was still high, but his floor is much lower than originally anticipated; he could either blow up as a star in the NBA or flame out in his first few seasons and because of this, he could get selected as soon as New York at No. 17 or as late as early-second round. As many predicted, Selby was a workout wonder and that should help with a team's confidence in drafting the guard- his 42" max vertical leap was matched by only one other player at the combine and at 6'3", 195 pounds, Selby measured as big as expected, making him the most physically gifted PG in the class. You can bet that there will be one team in the first round to take a chance on Selby.