KU hoops target Snaer to decide Wednesday

Michael Snaer

Michael Snaer

Blue-chip basketball recruit Michael Snaer, who last week said he’d wait until the spring to pick a college, has had a change of heart.

Rivals.com’s No. 11-rated prospect said Sunday he’ll choose between Kansas University, Florida State and Marquette at a yet-to-be-determined time Wednesday at Rancho Verde High in Moreno Valley, Calif.

“I want to get it out of the way. I think it’s that time,” Snaer said of finalizing his college choice.

The 6-foot-4, 185-pound shooting guard said he eliminated two schools Sunday – UCLA and Missouri.

“It was tough cutting Missouri. I know a lot of the players there,” Snaer said.

“It’s pretty close. I might have one school ahead of the others,” he added, not revealing that school.

“It’s going to be a hard decision. I look at the coaching staffs, the players, how hard the teams work.”

Asked specifically about KU, he said: “They have a good chance.”

Meanwhile, Rivals.com’s No. 3-rated player, Xavier Henry, will bypass the Nov. 12-19 signing period and will choose between finalists KU and Memphis sometime this spring.

“He did want to (sign early) at first. Circumstances happen,” Xavier’s dad, former KU player Carl Henry, said Sunday night.

Xavier suffered a fractured cheekbone in an Oct. 22 automobile accident and had surgery last week.

“He’s out four to six weeks. He’s taking medicine every day, resting, taking it easy. He’ll take his time. He’ll make his decision at the end of the season,” Carl Henry said.

Carl Henry, who averaged 17.1 points and 6.4 rebounds in his 61-game KU career (1982-83, 83-84), said Xavier “likes the players and coaches at both schools equally.”

This is reminiscent of the recruitment of Carl’s older son, C.J., who orally committed to KU in the spring of 2005 only to sign a professional baseball contract after being selected by the New York Yankees in the June draft.

“My older son did the same thing,” Carl said of bypassing the early signing period. “We thought Xavier would sign early … except for the accident.”

C.J. Henry is now a freshman guard at Memphis.

“He likes it there,” Carl Henry said, noting C.J. “stays out of it. We all realize it’s Xavier’s decision.”

KU and Memphis would not be waiting on Henry’s decision if the NBA allowed high schoolers to head directly to the pros.

“He would have,” Carl said of his son bypassing college had the rules not changed a few years ago. “I wish they could go directly from high school (to pros). If they are ready – if their bodies are physically ready – they should be able to go. His body is together.”

Xavier and other “one-and-done” players have the option of heading to college or Europe for a year before putting their names in the draft.

“Some don’t want to go to Europe. It’s a long way from home for kids who are in high school,” Carl said. “We’ve had offers to play in Europe. If a kid is not even through his senior year of high school, why would you even consider Europe right now?”

Two top high school seniors will definitely sign with KU on Wednesday.

They are: Thomas Robinson, a 6-8 power forward from Brewster Academy in Wolfeboro, N.H.; and Elijah Johnson, 6-2 from Cheyenne High in Las Vegas.

KU has two scholarships to give in recruiting. Coach Bill Self has said he would like to sign three or four prospects because of the likelihood of players leaving for the NBA.

KU targets Dominic Cheek, 6-5 from St. Anthony High in Jersey City, N.J.; Lance Stephenson, 6-5 from Lincoln High in Brooklyn, N.Y.; and John Wall, 6-4 from Word of God Christian Academy in Raleigh, N.C., will make their decisions in the spring.

¢ Next up for Jayhawks: KU, which pounded Washburn, 98-79, Tuesday, will play host to Emporia State at 7 p.m., Tuesday in Allen Fieldhouse. It’ll be KU’s final exhibition game of the preseason. Emporia State will play Wichita State tonight. The Jayhawks will open for real against UMKC at 7 p.m. Sunday.