Before Josh Selby played his first home game for the University of Kansas, coach Bill Self said his debut would be the most anticipated in recent memory. Selby’s journey from Baltimore to heartland of America was angst-filled, but the former Lake Clifton High star has been living up to all the expectations.
Selby is the second-leading scorer (13.3 points per game) and assist-person (3.7) for the unbeaten and No. 3 Jayhawks. A year ago, Selby was at Lake Clifton where he was All-Met Player of the Year after averaging 32 points, seven rebounds and five assists. The previous two seasons, Selby played for perennial national powerhouse DeMatha Catholic in Prince George’s County.
Selby broke his hand during a pickup during summer. In November, the NCAA suspended the guard for the Jayhawks’ first nine games for accepting improper benefits.
Selby took the court for the first time Dec. 18 vs. Southern California, and hit a game-winning three-pointer in a 70-68 decision. He finished with 21 points including five from the behind the arc. Selby has started in four of his first six games with Big 10 powerhouse.
Despite having his first rough outing (1 for 10 shooting; five points) in Kansas’ 67-60 win over Michigan Sunday, most college basketball pundits believe Selby, an McDonald’s All-American, will be a major factor in the Jayhawks’ pursuit of a national championship. Selby could be following the path of another Baltimore product, Carmelo Anthony (Towson Catholic), who helped Syracuse to the national title in his freshman season in 2003.
“Josh is athletic, fast, can score, and he’s ornery,” Self said during the summer. “We just have to harness that energy. But he’ll be terrific.”