• Follow Us: Facebook Twitter

Andrew Wiggins picks Kansas



Andrew Wiggins announced that he's headed to Kansas. / Randy Snyder for USA TODAY Sports

It's been a big month for decisions for Andrew Wiggins. Last week, it was what type of tux (white, with a peach vest and matching bow tie) to wear for prom.

On Tuesday, Wiggins, the American Family Insurance All-USA Player of the Year, announced he'll be wearing the crimson and blue of Kansas on the basketball court next season.

Huntington Herald-Dispatch reporter Grant Traylor tweeted the news from the signing ceremony. 


PHOTOS: Wiggins' high school career

Wiggins, a 6-8 forward from Huntington (W.Va.) Prep who averaged 23.4 points and 11.2 rebounds this season, avoided as best he could from the attention his recruitment drew, giving few clues to his choice. However, by waiting until the next-to-last day of the regular signing period to sign his national letter-of-intent, the media spotlight only grew on the 18-year-old from Toronto and son of former NBA player Mitchell Wiggins and former Canadian track Olympian Marita Payne-Wiggins.

MORE: Recruits made their final sales pitches

"Its' almost like the lack of concrete information from him just turned up the rumor mill," said Rivals.com recruiting analyst Eric Bossi. "There are just too many story lines. He's the No. 1 player from the country, he's from Canada, three of his finalists are NCAA blue bloods. It's like a perfect storm because everybody was waiting for his decision."

By going to Kansas, Wiggins joins one of the best recruiting classes in the country. He could step in to take over the role left by leading scorer Ben McLemore, who is a likely NBA lottery pick. He would be playing with two fellow elite recruits in wing Wayne Selden of Tilton (N.H.) School and 7-foot center Joel Embiid of The Rock (Gainesville, Fla.).

"We think he's as good a prospect as we've ever had," Kansas coach Bill Self said. "We're excited about it. He brings some athleticism, length, scoring ability and he's also an assassin, an alpha dog and you definitely need that when you have a whole bunch of young kids. I think he's going to be, not a good player, but has a chance to be a great one."

"The void of McLemore leaving can create a nice presence for Wiggins and he will be surrounded by talent," said ESPN analyst Paul Biancardi. "It strengthens their chance for another Big 12 title."

At the Tilton School, Selden played with the 2012 All-USA Player of the Year in Nerlens Noel. Now, he will be playing alongside Wiggins,  the 2013 All-USA Player of the Year.

"It's great," Selden said. "It's another really good impact player that we will have on the court with us. He does the little things to make a team win."

Though Noel and Wiggins play different positions, Selden sees at least one similarity.

"They're both really good competitors," he said. "I got to know Andrew a little more at the McDonald's All-America Game. He's going to bring some speed to our break at Kansas. We're going to be a young team, but we're getting way more athletic now."

Selden said he had wished Wiggins congratulations on Tuesday. He also talked about the move with Embiid.

"We're all coming together," Selden said.

Embiid said Wiggins will be unstoppable on the break.

"I am excited," Embiid said. "I think he's a great player. He's not the number one prospect for nothing. He's a little bit shy and he's humble. He's not like other players who are stars."

Embiid said Wiggins' biggest weakness is one Embiid shares.

"Like me, he has to get stronger and we have the best strength coach at Kansas in Coach (Andrea) Hudy. We're going to go to the next level when we are stronger."

Wiggins isn't expected to stay in college very long. NBAdraft.net lists him as the top player in their 2014 mock draft.

 

Comments

What's Hot