Bill Self likes Ben McLemore. Like he really, really likes Ben McLemore.
To be fair, there is a lot to like about McLemore. He is a long, 6-5 player who was very high regarded coming out of high school. He redshirted last season, but now he is back and ready to make an impact as a freshman. Self is counting on it too, even comparing McLemore, or at least his potential, to another great Kansas swingman.
Well, I do think we are talented and I think our young kids are going to be good. I believe that the most heralded one is Ben (McLemore), without question, because we have not seen Ben play and he is talented, but he just has to learn how to plug himself in the game and be aggressive at all times. But just from an athlete, shooting, length, slide, rebounding - he can do about as many things as we have had here. He reminds me a lot of Brandon (Rush) in that regard, but we struggled with Brandon being aggressive if you guys remember. So that is one thing that Ben is going to have to be good at.
If McLemore can turn out to be as good as the NBA's Rush, the Jayhawks will have something special on their hands. The tools are there, but as Self said, even Rush had trouble making the most of his tools. Will McLemore be able to? Kansas sure hopes so, and the rest of the Big 12 really hopes not.