Perry Ellis not even close to choosing

He's averaging 27 points and 11.2 rebounds per game and shooting 66 percent from the field, yet Wichita sophomore Perry Ellis is not overly happy with his play because his team has already lost two games.

He's averaging 27 points and 11.2 rebounds per game and shooting 66 percent from the field, yet Wichita sophomore Perry Ellis is not overly happy with his play because his team has already lost two games.

"The two losses bother me. I feel like I am a better player this year because of all the competition I played against during the summer when I really stayed busy and did a lot of things. But I don't like it when we lose," said the 6-8 Ellis, who is one of the nation's top sophomores.

His combination of size and skills have made him a recruiting target for most big-time schools the last two years.

Kansas obviously knows plenty about Ellis since he was the state high school player of the year as a freshman. Kentucky coach John Calipari and his staff keep tabs on Ellis. So do Oklahoma State, Kansas State, Memphis, Wichita State and others even though he has 2 1/2 years of high school basketball ahead of him.

"I am enjoying the attention. It is a blessing. Not a lot of people get the chance to have that. It is kind of fun actually," Ellis said. "My freshman year there was more pressure college-wise. Now I am kind of used to it and just play through it. I don't even really pay attention when coaches are around."

When he has a chance, he likes to watch various college games to gauge how he may fit into a particular team's playing style. "I also like to see how players develop on teams and stuff like that," Ellis said.

One player he particularly likes to watch play is Kentucky freshman John Wall.

"He is so much fun to watch," Ellis said. "He brings so much energy and intensity to the game. He brings so much excitement. It's fun to watch him. I never got the chance to play against him in AAU, but you can tell he is an incredible player and I like the style he gets to play at Kentucky. I like to go up and down the court, too."

What other players does he like to watch play?

"All the others are in the NBA, which is where I guess John Wall will be next year, too," Ellis said.

That's where Ellis eventually would like to be, too, and is why he's trying to gradually expand his game despite his impressive freshman season when he helped his team win a state title.

He says he learned from watching top college players play that he can't let a missed shot disrupt his play.

"I see how they shoot a shot and if they miss, they don't worry about it. They just run back on defense," he said. "I am getting good at that. Last year I was really disappointed when I missed a shot. Now I run back and do not think anything about it.

"Last year I played a lot inside. As the years go by, I want to play more and more outside. I like to play inside and outside and feel like I can do both. I can shoot the ball well, something I really worked on over the summer."

He's always been able to handle the ball well going back to his little league days.

"When I was on the third grade team and we got pressured, the coaches always had me bring the ball up. That is how we played. I would just bring the ball all the way down the court and I got used to doing that," he said. "I have always been able to handle the ball. If the game gets tight, I am not afraid to handle the ball."

He says his sister, Savana, who now plays at Memphis, has helped emphasize the academic side of his sport to him. He doesn't get to watch her often other than via the Internet, but he says she has had a big influence on his play.

He's not even close to narrowing down his list of college choices. He did make a quick stop in Lexington last summer after John Calipari took over. His mother didn't let him know they were going to UK during their AAU travel.

"I had no clue where we were going. I really liked what I saw then and I am sure I will look hard at Kentucky. It's a great school with a great coach," Ellis said. "Kansas obviously recruits me hard. I like how they play and what they do, too.

"I am not in any hurry to narrow down my list. I will wait and see all the options out there and not say no to anybody right now."

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