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Kansas Basketball 50 in 50, No. 20: Jeff Withey Player Profile

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50 in 50 is a feature here at RCT counting down until the Jayhawks kick off the 2011 basketball season on November first. Got an idea for something you'd like to see featured here? tweet @rockchalktalk or @fetch9 or email me at fetch9 at gmail dot com.

Overview: Withey was one of the highest profile recruits out of the San Diego area when he decided to attend Arizona. He made the decision to transfer after Lute Olson retired. His move to Kansas was put on hold because Arizona wouldn't grant him his release, but he suited up for half the 2009-10 campaign where he averaged just 3 minutes per game. Last year he doubled his playing time (woo hoo) and scored 2.3 ppg and had 1.8 rpg.

What he does well: Withey's biggest skill is his shotblocking. It was 12.5% last year, which would have ranked 9th nationally if he had enough minutes to qualify. It won't stay that high obviously, but he has the ability to be an elite shot blocker. Withey got to the line a lot a lot a lot (relatively speaking) and also shot well from two (64.7%). His defensive rebounding is merely OK, but his offensive rebounding (15.1%) was very good last year.

What he doesn't do well: You may be absolutely shocked to know that there isn't much film out there on Jeff WIthey, so any analysis I, or anyone, could give as to his ability to run the floor or have offensive awareness outside of simple post moves, would be purely a guess, and I don't want to engage in something that irresponsible. What we do know about him is that despite getting to the line, his free throw shooting (51.5%) was a defeciency, he turned it over a lot (21%) for a big man who isn't a big part of the offense, and he committed 6.7 fouls per 40 minutes. Though the fouls will come down this year as I am assuming he was told to be more aggressive given he wasn't expected to stay on the floor for much time.

Season outlook: Withey will be counted on to, at the very least, be a suitable defender in the low post and rebounder. Although my "doesn't do well" paragraph is double the length of his "does well" paragraph, I am pretty optimistic as to Withey's fortunes this year. I don't think he'll score much other than on putbacks and dump off dunks and layups, but I think he can develop into a potentially elite shotblocker and above average rebounder and be at least a big contributor off the bench, if not a starter.

On a final, somber note, all of us at RCT and Jayhawk nation would like to offer sympathies to former Valparaiso coach Homer Drew and his wife, who were both diagnosed with cancer. Drew's son Scott is the current coach at Baylor. His other son, Homer, who hit one of the most famous shots in NCAA Tourney history, is the current coach at Valpo.