At the Amar�
Stoudemire Skills Academy in Phoenix last summer, Kansas senior Sasha Kaun
glanced at the court and did a double take. Was that his 6' 9" sophomore
teammate Darrell Arthur, who was supposed to be training with the U.S. under-19
team in Dallas at the time? No--it was the camp's host. "Darrell and Amar�
both have similar body types," says Kaun. "They can play the post real
well, and Darrell is really aggressive. He tries to dunk everything, just like
Arthur is a long
way from becoming an All-NBA force like Stoudemire; the Jayhawks would be happy
if he just developed into an All-America. His left leg now fully healed from a
stress fracture that was diagnosed in July, Arthur will be the only new starter
for the two-time defending Big 12 champs. Coach Bill Self hopes that with the
increase in playing time comes maturity and consistency: Arthur's three highest
scoring games as a freshman (including 19�points in an upset of No.�1
Florida) all came in November, and that initial success went to his head.
"Every time I got the ball I was just shooting it," he says. "I'm
going to look for my teammates more now."
That would be a
good idea, since Kansas remains one of the most talented teams in the country.
Leading scorer Brandon Rush, who tore his right ACL in a pickup game last May,
is still recovering from surgery, but when the junior is healthy, the Jayhawks
will have the nation's deepest backcourt, with senior Russell Robinson, junior
Mario Chalmers and sophomore Sherron Collins. They also have plenty of size up
front, with Arthur, the 6' 11" Kaun, 6' 8" senior Darnell Jackson and
6' 11" freshman Cole Aldrich, a McDonald's All-American.
do-everything sophomore forward Julian Wright, who was taken 13th by the New
Orleans Hornets. But Arthur is a capable replacement. "Darrell's more of a
natural scorer than Julian was, but he can do a lot of other things too,"
says Self. "I've talked to him about how he can impact the game on every
possession without shooting. Playing defense, rebounding, running, shot
blocking--he does a little of everything. He's been terrific [in practice] and
has a chance to be a serious producer for us."
contains a table. Please see hardcopy of magazine or PDF.]
Louisiana-Monroe (W 107-78)
Missouri- Kansas City (W 85-62)
Nov. 21 Northern