As far as depth goes, the Jayhawks could have the deepest and most talented bench in the Big 12 and possibly the nation. Today, we take a look at the fan favorites. For the most part, these are guys that will never play more than 5 or 6 minutes in a single game. Kids that are drawn to Lawrence for the opportunity to wear the practice gear, play against the best in practice, and listen to the best coaches in the nation. Not to mention, the best seats in the house at the loudest venue in America and being able to walk up to any girl on campus and letting her know you're on the basketball team.
Just so everyone knows, it's looking more and more like Teahan and Woolridge are both redshirting. If that happens, 3 of these 4 players will not be playing this year. (Update as of Friday morning: Woolridge is likely to actually play.)
Conner Teahan: He's not just a guy that has his own "I heart Conner" Facebook group who also plays the piano and writes his own music, the guy can play a little basketball as well. At Rockhurst High School in Kansas City, he averaged 25 points and 8 rebounds a game, was named "Mr. Show-Me Basketball", and awarded the DiRenna Award as the metro's top player. Teahan was also a very good quarterback in high school and even worked out with the Jayhawks in the spring but ultimately decided to keep his talents on the hardwood. As a Jayhawk, he hasn't been able to crack the rotation due to suspect speed and ball handling. He's a good shooter (and definitely not shy about pulling the trigger when he's in the game) and rebounder. Rumors that he might take a redshirt this year have circulated but I haven't read anything definitive yet.
More after the jump.
Niko Roberts: A walk-on from Saint Anthony's High School in New York and the son of former KU assistant Norm Roberts. Niko is a 5'11'' 175 pound point guard that averaged 16 points and five assists a game in his senior year of high school. Don't know if he'll find a way to crack the rotation as a regular in Lawrence but a coach's kid and one that wanted to go to Kansas since 2005 is a good guy to have pushing the players in practice every day.
Jordan Juenemann: If an artist were to draw a stereotypical walk-on for a big time program, that artist would draw something very close to Juenemann. A 6'3'' guard that grew up in Kansas that graduated high school with a 3.98 grade point average. He'll never get meaningful minutes but you know he's the guy that Bill Self praises during a crappy practice.
Royce Woolridge: A kid that figured out he wanted to play for the Jayhawks after watching RussRob and Super Mario dominate Jerryd Bayless on defense, that's who Royce Woolridge is. Woolridge was only a 3 star recruit coming out of high school, the reasons vary depending on what/who you believe. The one concrete we know is that he is undersized for a #2 guard that doesn't shoot the 3 exceptionally well. Kid can score, though averaging 29 points a game his senior year of high school. He has been described as being able to get to the lane with ease and uses great body control to find his shot. Mix that in with a good shot off the dribble and you might have a Brandon Rush light on the offensive side.
Reports are that he's likely a redshirt this year, which could help him pack some muscle on his 6'3'' and 180 pound frame.
Justin Wesley: A transfer walk-on who is ineligible for the 2010-11 season after transferring from Lamar University in Beaumont, Texas. He averaged a little over a point and a rebound per game last year while appearing in 23 games. Little brother of Jayhawk Keith Langford and is somewhat of a lottery ticket. From reading around about him, I'd say he's a Thomas Robinson light. Athletic and fairly long but a very limited offensive game, minutes might be available for him next year if Marcus Morris has a year like many are predicting.