Georgia Stars teammates Lance Storrs and Gani Lawal had to pack a lot into a short amount of time during their unofficial to Lawrence. The duo, both juniors, arrived in Lawrence Friday afternoon and will head back home on a 3:30 flight out of Kansas City Saturday afternoon. According to their coach Harold Thompson, the quick visit was worth it.
“It was unbelievable really,” Thompson told Phog.Net. “They did a really good job and we all enjoyed it. There was a little kid walking around with a shirt that said “Welcome Gani and Lance” and everything was set up really nice and well organized. It was definitely worth it.”
This was the second time that Storrs, a 6-5 wing who was decked out in a sharp World B. Free throwback jersey, had made the visit to Lawrence. He was able to get a taste during a June visit but according to Thompson they were able to see much more on this visit.
“They got to see a little bit of the social life last night and really get a feel for things,” said Thompson. “Kansas and Bill Self are a first class organization. They don’t try to pressure you like other places do and rush you to make a decision. You can see that all of the players really like him and the fan support is unbelievable. That was just a practice and most of the students weren’t even in town.
“Kansas is in Lance’s top three,” added Thompson. “It’s them with Alabama and Georgia Tech. Florida has been getting in more lately and so have Tennessee and Virginia Tech but Kansas is in the top three.”
For Lawal, the trip was his first opportunity to see Lawrence and the trip wasn’t even originally planned. Jeremy Price was supposed to accompany Storrs and Thompson on the trip, but the junior big man gave an early verbal to Georgia clearing the way for the multi-skilled Lawal to attend.
As much as he enjoyed the visit, Lawal isn’t quite ready to put Kansas up there with his early favorites Georgia Tech, Kentucky, Duke and North Carolina but the trip certainly opened some doors for the Jayhawks.
“Kansas wasn’t in the picture with Gani at all, not even on the radar,” said Thompson. “That’s part of why I like to take these kids to as many places as possible. I want them to experience as many different schools as they can so they know what is out there and the trip definitely opened his eyes to Kansas.”
While the glitz and glamour of Late Night is nice, a battle that Bill Self will have to overcome in selling his program to potential recruits is just how many young players are on the roster. However, it may not be as hard as some might think.
“There’s a lot of good freshman there, but all of those guys like Downs, Chalmers, Julian and Brandon Rush could be leaving early,” said Thompson. “It’s a real nice environment too, it’s all about basketball.”
Thompson was also impressed with the amount of top talent on hand. He and his players thought having guys like Darrell Arthur, Sherron Collins, Cole Aldrich, Travis Releford and others in attendance was a plus and only added to what was a memorable experience.
“It’s good to be acknowledged as one of the top players and you want to go somewhere and be considered one of the greats,” said Thompson. “Sitting with those other kids makes you feel it. The kids really enjoyed being a part of select company. Everybody went out of their way to make all of us feel special and that’s what makes Kansas a class act.”