KU football tight end James Sosinski still with Kansas hoops squad

photo by: Matt Tait

After starring at Lansing High and moving on to Kansas City Kansas Community College, KU walk-on Clay Young's journey with the Jayhawks has taken him places he never would have imagined he'd go. Here Young watches intently from the bench during KU's fourth and final exhibition game in Milan, Italy on Sunday, Aug. 6, 2017.

Kansas football tight end turned potential KU hoops walk-on, James Sosinski, strolled out to the practice floor with the rest of the Jayhawks on Monday and Self updated his status, as well.

“I’m going to watch him practice today and tomorrow,” Self said. “And if he does well, we’re going to let him suit up and be on the bench on Wednesday. I’m sure he will. I’m real impressed with him as a kid. He seems bright, he’s picked up stuff, even though we haven’t thrown anything at him hardly, and I think he’ll know his role.”

The idea of Sosinski joining the basketball team surfaced last week, when Self invited him to practice to give him a look. The idea then was that he would watch him for a few practices and see if he was worth adding to the roster.

Given that KU has just seven scholarship players eligible at the moment — with walk-ons Clay Young and Chris Teahan representing the eighth and ninth players in KU’s current rotation — adding another body to a thin bench seemed like an idea worth exploring.

It’s hard to know how long Sosinski would have to be around for Self to trust him enough to put him in a game. But it’s worth noting that last Saturday, during KU’s 76-60 victory over Syracuse, Young, who stands 6-foot-5, played nine first-half minutes and was asked to guard Syracuse’s 7-foot-2 center and other taller players.

Outside of mop-up duty late in blowouts and offering emergency depth for KU’s big men, the 6-7, 260-pound former junior college basketball player Sosinski also would have value in KU’s practices.

“He’s hard for Udoka to score on,” Self said of 7-foot center Udoka Azubuike. “(James is) the one heavy body that we can put down there that can lean on him and be just as strong and have even a better base than Dok to kind of push him out. So I think this is good for Udoka.”