Things are looking positive for Kansas University in the crazy, ever-changing Xavier Henry sweepstakes.
Henry’s dad, Carl, said Friday that his son, who asked for a release from his letter-of-intent with the University of Memphis, most definitely wants to be a Jayhawk.
“I believe what it comes down to is Xavier wants to go to KU,” former KU guard Carl Henry said of Xavier, a 6-foot-6 shooting guard from Putnam City (Okla.) High, who is Rivals.com’s No. 3-rated player nationally.
Xavier Henry signed with Memphis in November but will be allowed to transfer without sitting out a year because of an agreement he had with the school that said he would be released from his letter if coach John Calipari took another job. Calipari left Memphis for Kentucky earlier this week.
Carl Henry said Xavier’s brother, Memphis freshman walk-on guard C.J. Henry, also wants to attend KU, but may have to remain at Memphis if he wants to play next season. C.J. would be able to practice, but not play in games next season, if he transferred to KU in accordance with NCAA rules.
There is an appeals process C.J. can go through, however, to try to gain instant eligibility in Lawrence. C.J. didn’t play a minute at Memphis this season because of a broken foot.
“C.J. doesn't want to sit out. He wants to play,” Carl said. “Basically if he transfers, we don’t think C.J. will be able to play. We will not know for sure until we talk to a couple lawyers. I don’t think it’s fair he has to sit out a year. The school is not paying for his scholarship. The Yankees (who signed him out of high school) are paying for it. He didn’t play all year. He should be able to go to Kansas and play right away.
“If C.J. decides to play, he will either play at Memphis or possibly wait for an appeal (after transferring). If the appeal didn’t work out, he’d have to sit out the year at Kansas.”
Carl said C.J. would not be happy at KU if he had to sit out next season. “He really wants to play,” Carl said.
Xavier, meanwhile, is committed to entering the NBA Draft after one year in college. Carl said NBA scouts told him his son actually was physically ready for the league his junior year in high school. Carl Henry said Xavier should have his release from Memphis on Monday. That would free him to contact coach Bill Self about a possible transfer.
“It should all be settled in the next two or three weeks,” Carl said, noting he did not believe Kentucky was a possibility for either son.
He said Xavier could play at KU and C.J. at Memphis; both could play at KU or both could play at Memphis depending on the new coach.
Carl said Friday that Xavier wanted to attend KU all along. He signed with Memphis in November so he could keep the family together, playing with brother, C.J., who was a late arrival at Memphis at the end of minor league baseball season.
“He chose family,” Carl Henry said.
Brooklyn, N.Y., wing Lance Stephenson remains undecided between KU, St. John’s and Maryland. There are rumors Daniel Orton, a 6-10 forward from Oklahoma City, might consider KU if he decides to ask for a release from his Kentucky letter-of-intent.