KU freshman Ben McLemore earns All-America honors

Kansas guard Ben McLemore puts up a three against Texas Tech during the first half of the second round of the Big 12 tournament on Thursday, March 14, 2013 at the Sprint Center in Kansas City, Missouri.

Kansas guard Ben McLemore puts up a three against Texas Tech during the first half of the second round of the Big 12 tournament on Thursday, March 14, 2013 at the Sprint Center in Kansas City, Missouri.

April 1, 2013, 2:15 p.m. Updated April 1, 2013, 11:50 p.m.


Kansas University freshman guard Ben McLemore was named to the 10-player John R. Wooden Award All-America Team announced Monday by the Los Angeles Athletic Club.

The 6-foot-5 freshman from St. Louis also was tapped second-team All-America by the Associated Press. KU senior center Jeff Withey was accorded third-team mention by the AP.

This marks the fourth-straight season and seventh time in the 10-year Bill Self era that a Jayhawk has been selected to the Wooden All-America team. McLemore marks the 13th Kansas player named to the team, which started in 1977.

One of 10 players will be named Wooden Award winner this weekend at the Final Four. Joining McLemore as All-Americans and finalists: Trey Burke, Michigan; Victor Oladipo and Cody Zeller, Indiana; Doug McDermott, Creighton; Shane Larkin, Miami; Kelly Olynyk, Gonzaga; Mason Plumlee, Duke; Otto Porter Jr., Georgetown; Deshaun Thomas, Ohio State.

McLemore was joined on the AP’s second team by Plumlee, Zeller, Larkin and Oklahoma State freshman Marcus Smart.

Withey was joined on the third team by Thomas, Virginia Tech’s Erick Green, South Dakota State’s Nate Wolters and Louisville’s Russ Smith.

The first team consisted of McDermott, Burke, Porter, Oladipo and Olynyk.

Selden shines: KU signee Wayne Selden, a 6-5 senior shooting guard from Tilton (N.H.) School, who is ranked No. 26 nationally by, dazzled at Monday’s McDonald’s All-America Game practice in Chicago.

“Selden looks like he hit the genetic lottery,” wrote Eric Bossi of “The Kansas-bound wing is tough and athletic and he plays with power on the wing. Selden was under control while playing a man’s game and thriving in pick and roll. He says the KU coaches want him to be a defensive stopper and slasher. There’s no doubt he’ll be getting bumped to five-star and move up the rankings (likely in top 15).”

Wiggins dazzles: Andrew Wiggins, the country’s No. 1-ranked high school senior, on Monday, “displayed his jaw-dropping athleticism and a much improved jump shot. He was mobbed by national media after (McDonald’s) practice,” writes Michael O’Brien of Chicago’s Sun Times.

The 6-7 forward from Huntington (W.Va.) Prep has a final list of KU, Kentucky, Florida State and North Carolina. He told the Louisville Courier-Journal he has pondered joining forces with Kentucky’s six other McDonald’s All-Americans.

Asked whether Plano, Texas, forward Julius Randle’s recent commitment made Kentucky more or less appealing, Wiggins told the C-J. “It’s always good to add another player to the roster. Julius is a good player, unselfish. I wouldn’t mind playing with him.”

No. 6-ranked Aaron Gordon, 6-8 from Archbishop Mitty in San Jose, Calif., will announce for either Arizona, Kentucky, Washington or Oregon at today’s McDonald’s Media Day. The McDonald’s game is set for 8:30 p.m., Wednesday at United Center and will be aired on ESPN.


Kent Richardson 5 years, 2 months ago

Really glad to see Jeff make it. Thanks Ben.

bballwizard 5 years, 2 months ago

its going to be a tough year unless we get Wiggins. He sounds like hes going to Kentucky. Calpari is killing Coach. If Kentucky gets wiggins they will win it all next year. The Kentucky facilites must be way better than KUs. Anyone know?

jonas_opines 5 years, 2 months ago

Kentucky was picked as likely to win it all This year, based on their recruiting class. How did that work out?

I doubt there's much difference between the two school's facilities. Certainly less that between our systems of play. Calipari gets these recruits because his entire system is set around getting them, and he is admittedly the best in the business at it. All the best one and done prospects go to him because they'll get exposure and playing time and then get drafted after one year and move on.

Frankly, if a recruit would like to go to Kentucky, I don't actually want them to come here. I like the way Self builds and develops a team, and we've not been a good mesh, overall, with our one-and-dones. One out of three so far have worked with our team, so far, over the past few years.

Bill Manley 5 years, 2 months ago

Having the top recruits is no guarantee of success - look at the Lakers! There are issues like chemistry, egos, and playing together that not even pro dream teams can figure out at times. What happened with UK in 2012 comes along about every 10 or 15 years when a team of freshman dominates, has a once in a lifetime player like Davis, and cuts down the nets. I don't see it happening next year. They'll be good and ranked #1 and all that but it won't mean much come tourney time. All the guys who were supposed to tear it up this year fizzled in large. Top recruits go to UK because Cal will play them immediately since his system is all about "one and done". It's the fastest way to the NBA to a lot of these young guys. If KU got as many top recruits as UK, we'd have a lot more NC since Self is such a superior coach to Cal.

jhawkinsf 5 years, 2 months ago

I read an article a year or so ago that compared the Kentucky living facilities with a 5 star hotel. I have no idea how that compares with K.U., but from the tone of what I read, it seemed to imply they were better than others. As far as workout facilities and such, I don't know.

hesshawk 5 years, 2 months ago

I don't believe for a minute that next year will "be a tough year" just because we don't get Wiggins. HCBS has guys coming in that can play, and if they play the way he demands, they'll be good and potentially great. Still think he'll end up at Florida State...he can be the guy there. Also, don't think we can assume that UK will "win it all next year" just because they have all those guys. Once they roll the ball out for games, all those "king of their own world" players have to learn how to play with each other. Ego's will have to be meshed and if they don't, I could see that team being a train wreck. All this talk now is just talk, or sports bar coaching, or whatever you want to call it.
I still like our coach a heckuva lot more than UK's


BorderRuffianChicago 5 years, 2 months ago

As much as us KU and HCBS fans love to wax poetically that "coach doesn't build teams that way" (i.e actually landing 5 MickeyD's every year) the reality is that he IS going after all of the same guys as Cal, and in most cases losing the recruiting battle when KU makes the "short-list" with UK. The recruiting trail tells the story that Bill Self would LOVE to pad his roster with as many McD guys as UK but he doesn't have AS much (after all he still lands MD'ers and our most talented teams have had multiple) success in landing them for reasons we can all speculate. What Cal is doing seems pretty remarkable, almost too remarkable. This years class can't be compared to any of his other classes. By all accounts it is the most talent every assembled on a college roster the last 30 years. Talent alone will win them a LOT of games when they aren't that "good" in the early months (see 2012 Wildcats) and if they end up having a nucleus of talent and coachable/good kids (see 2012 UK) they will be scary come January. Add to that the fact that they have 3 returning starters that were also 5-star recruits with a year of maturity and a chip on their shoulders.......yeesh.......This was the FIRST year at UK, and the first season since Cal came back to the college game , that his formula didn't pay off. One would think a talented coach could get a team with that much talent to win with a few problems, but who knows. I have a hard time believing a guy who can get top talent to play well every year isn't a good coach.

BorderRuffianChicago 5 years, 2 months ago

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Kent Noble 5 years, 2 months ago

Julius Randle and the McDonalds All Americans on Kentucky's roster are in the process of Recruiting Wiggins. It's over KU fans, Andrew Wiggins is going to Kentucky. Coach Calipari has been talking to him as well. What's Bill Self been trying to do? sounds like nothing. Once Calipari gets 3 or 4 All Americans, he leaves it up to them to bring the the rest in who haven't signed. To me that should be against the rules of recruiting. Also Julius and Wiggins are on the East team. It's pretty much cut and dry Wiggins will be a Wildcat.

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