Silvio De Sousa Could be Kansas Basketball’s Early Christmas Present

Help is coming for the Kansas Jayhawks. After spending a third of the college basketball season with the thinnest of front-courts, Bill Self and company believe depth is on the way.

4-star recruit Silvio De Sousa has been attempting to finish classes at IMG Academy and enroll early to Kansas. He believes he will have all his academics wrapped up by the end of this week. From there, he will wait on the NCAA to declare him eligible. If all goes to plan, the 6’9 forward from Angola could see himself suited up as early as December 29th when Kansas opens up Big 12 play. Crazy, right?

The news could not come at a better time for Kansas, who has had some struggles on the court as of late. After dropping back to back games against Washington and Arizona State, the Jayhawks found themselves getting called soft by their head coach. Self is known to dig at his team during tough times, but he may have a point here.

Kansas was supposed to have solid front court depth. Udoka Azubuike returned from injury and McDonald’s All-American Billy Preston was coming to campus to replace a struggling Carlton Bragg. Many also thought Mitch Lightfoot would take a big step forward in his development, as most KU bigs do. Preston has yet to play however, due to an incident with a car back in November, and Lightfoot has been underwhelming thus far. 

“This is the softest team Kansas has had since I’ve been here.” – Bill Self

It’s hard to imagine De Sousa making an enormous impact for KU, seeing as he is coming in midway through the season and will be asked to pick up the college game relatively quickly. That said, the best ability is availability, and pending clearance from the NCAA, De Sousa will be available. He could very well see minutes if Preston continues to sit and Lightfoot does not play well. 

Outside Azubuike, Preston and Lightfoot, Self’s options are limited to walk-on Clay Young. A relatively thin team all around, the Jayhawks did get some added back-court depth with Sam Cunliffe becoming eligible after sitting out a year for transferring. Adding another player to the front-court will at least give Self numbers to rotate on a given night.

It’s still early, and until you can beat Kansas in February, the Big 12 still runs though Phog Allen, but Kansas is at a critical point heading into Big 12 play. The Big 12 looks as good as ever and a thin roster could spell trouble for the 13 time reigning champs. Luckily, help may be just around the corner.

And by the way, if you don’t know what De Sousa is capable of…

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