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QUICK HIT: Wiggins Chooses Kansas
By Joe Quinn (@joequinnshow)
The undisputed #1 high school hoops prospect, Andrew Wiggins, has made his college choice...and its one that might not bode well for the Cyclones.
With Wiggins announcement he'll attend Kansas next season, it shifts the balance of power back to the Jayhawks, where it seems to have resided forever.
So what does this mean for the Big 12 next year?
Before today, Oklahoma State looked like they'd be tough to beat, with Marcus Smart, Le"Bryan Nash, Phil Forte, and Markel Brown all returning.
I might be the only one, but there's something just a little bit unsettling about this OSU team that leaves me with just a little bit of doubt heading into next season. They wilted against KSU in Kansas City when they were the better team on paper, and lost to Oregon in their first NCAA game in quiet fashion.
Oklahoma State should have been tougher in the Big 12 tournament then what they were, and certainly should have played more than one game in the Dance. I'm not ready to hand the crown to the Cowboys by any means.
On the other hand, I feel pretty good about the Jayhawks' chances now. The newcomers are superb: they get the #1 recruit in the country in Wiggins, another McDonald's All-American in Wayne Seldon, two sharpshooters in Frankamp and Green, and a couple of other nice pieces.
Plus, the returners for Kansas will be better than most think. By the end of the season, F Perry Ellis was arguably their best player, and PG Naadir Tharpe looks like he's ready to take the next step.
As for the rest of the conference? A lot of question marks. Iowa State will probably be better than most people think right now (a common trait of Fred Hoiberg teams), but still lose a ton of senior talent and leadership. I still see Iowa State as a top-half of the Big 12 type team, even with the losses, but they're clearly not at the level of OSU or KU.
Baylor will also make some noise in the Big 12 next year, fueled by big man Isiah Austin, who decided to return to school for another year. But without PG Pierre Jackson (NBA draft), and with Scott Drew at the helm, its just tough to pick Baylor much higher than third in the league.
The bottom line? A lot of people thought this might finally be the year that Bill Self and Kansas finished off the top line.
With today's news, don't count on it.