Coach Self was asked about the possibility of any players redshirting next season. While he basically wouldn’t talk about it right now, he didn’t exactly rule out the possibility either. Let's face it folks. Next year's KU basketball roster is loaded. Beyond the obvious starters, there's going to be a heck of a battle for minutes. It would come as no big surprise if someone was to redshirt next year. Supposing someone does redshirt next year, who are the likely candidates?
As a reminder, here's the complete roster of scholarship players for next year.
Frontcourt (4 and 5 positions): Aldrich, Withey, Morris twins, Robinson. I don't see any of these guys redshirting. Note that I'm assuming Little predominantly plays at his natural position (the 3) next season. Withey is not a redshirt candidate since he burned his redshirt while sitting out the transfer year. The Morris twins are joined at the hip so I don't see either of them redshirting. In addition to being a high profile recruit, Robinson's rebounding skills are believed to be superior to the Morris twins. Can't see Self redshirting a player who could potentially be his 2nd best rebounder (behind Aldrich).
Small Forward (the 3 position): Henry, Morningstar, Little, Releford. Obviously Henry won't be redshirting. Morningstar has already redshirted. That leaves Little and Releford. To me, an obvious candidate to redshirt is Releford. Of the 4 players I mentioned for the SF position, Releford would be the 4th option in my opinion. I suppose Little could redshirt, but it's not likely. You don't see many players redshirt their Sr. year unless it’s due to injury.
Backcourt (1 and 2 positions): Collins, Taylor, Johnson, Reed, and possibly Morningstar. With Taylor as the likely starter at the 2, he won’t be redshirting. Johnson is simply too talented to redshirt. That leaves Reed as a potential redshirt candidate. I could see a scenario where Reed could redshirt, Morningstar would be a backup at the 2 position, and Releford would be the 3rd option at the 3. That said, I think it might be tough to redshirt Reed. He has shown on multiple occasions the ability to hit 3’s at crucial points in the game. You would like to have him available on the bench when KU needs 3-point shooting and the starters are cold from beyond the arc.
Note that I haven’t even mentioned CJ Henry. While I’m skeptical that he will, it’s possible he could crack the backcourt rotation. If that were to be the case coming out of the exhibition games, then I could see Reed redshirting. Again, I’m not expecting that to be the case. Momma Henry said she thinks CJ is only about 85% healed from his injury. That, along with the rust he probably needs to shake off, lessens the chances that CJ will be ready to challenge for a spot in the guard rotation by the time the season starts.
So in a longwinded, roundabout way I am suggesting that Releford consider redshirting next season with Reed as another possibility if CJ Henry is good enough to contribute right away.