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#KU50: 40 Darrell Arthur

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40 days until Kansas basketball!

NBA: New Orleans Pelicans at Denver Nuggets Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

For all the talent the 2008 title team had (not to mention experience, size, defense, guard play, etc), few people remember it was Darrell Arthur who led the team in usage rate by a pretty good margin (he led the 2007 team as a freshman as well). Arthur averaged roughly 10 ppg as a freshman and 13 ppg as a sophomore, but they weren’t the creations of taking a lot of shots. Arthur shot 55.5 percent on twos and 70 percent from the line as a sophomore, mixing in one of the best turnaround jumpers KU has ever seen with a knack for getting great position down low to catch passes off the high-low. He was an underrated passer in the high post as well, with a 6.5 percent assist rate as a sophomore.

Maybe the one knock on Arthur’s game is that sweet jumper resulted in a lack of getting to the line, as he had a free throw rate under 30 as a sophomore (and went to the line fewer than 3 times per game).

That’s about as short of a paragraph on a player’s weaknesses you’ll find in this list. Arthur was an efficient scorer, a very good offensive rebounder, and a serviceable if not great defensive rebounder. He is also one of the more underrated defenders in recent KU history. The linchpin of the defense, Arthur got out and defended on the perimeter, was 39th in the country in block percentage as a freshman, led the team in block percentage (among players playing 20+ minutes per game) as a sophomore, and finished top 10 in the Big 12 in defensive win shares both years.

Arthur has continued that prowess in the NBA as a versatile defender who has recently added the three pointer to his arsenal. Health issues caused his NBA draft stock to fall in 2008, but with over $25 million in career earnings, I think he’s doing just fine. Once he makes another $15 million he should retire so he can equal his place on this list.

Previous:

41. Devonte Graham

42. Jerod Haase

43. Kenny Gregory

44. Wayne Selden

45. Otto Schnellbacher

46. Ryan Robertson

47. Xavier Henry

48. Mark Turgeon

49. Paul Mokeski

50. Charlie T. Black