Five-star guard Quentin Grimes calls feeling of signing with KU indescribable

Five-star guard Quentin Grimes, from The Woodlands, Texas, signed a National Letter of Intent to play men's basketball at the University of Kansas on Wednesday, Nov. 15, 2017.

On Tuesday in Chicago, the Kansas men's basketball team beat Kentucky in the Champions Classic to give the Jayhawks their third consecutive victory over the Wildcats.

On Wednesday, back in Lawrence, Kansas made it four in a row.

No, Kansas and Kentucky did not do battle in an encore performance of Tuesday's 65-61, KU victory at United Center. Instead, Bill Self and the Jayhawks defeated Kentucky in a recruiting battle for one of the top players in the country, five-star guard Quentin Grimes.

Most recruiting analysts had Grimes' decision down to Kansas and Texas, but Kentucky and Marquette were his other finalists, so the Jayhawks can take credit for the victory over Big Blue Nation, too.

Grimes, who has long been at the top of KU's Class of 2018 wish list, announced his commitment to Kansas at a ceremony at College Park High in The Woodlands, Texas. Shortly thereafter, he sent his national letter of intent to the KU basketball offices to make his commitment official. Needless to say, the news was well received in Lawrence.

“We feel Quentin Grimes is as good as guard as there is in high school basketball,” Self said of the 6-foot-5, 180-pound combo guard. “He's got great size. He's got point guard vision. He can really handle the ball. He reminds me of a guy that I coached at Illinois, Deron Williams, but probably a better scorer than Deron at this stage. We think Quentin will be an impact guy for us and be one of the premier guards in the country early in his career.”

For Grimes, who held up a No. 5 Kansas jersey in front of a huge smile in the moments that followed his big announcement, the moment he made it official was unlike anything he had ever experienced.

“It was just a feeling that you can't even really describe,” Grimes told the Journal-World late Wednesday night. “Just knowing that you're going to the school you want to go to and you're going to be playing for a Hall-of-Fame coach like Bill Self, you can't even put that into words.”

Grimes said making his decision and sending his letter in before the end of the early signing period, which arrived at midnight Wednesday, was a goal of his throughout the process.

“It was important because I knew all of the benefits that would come after if I signed early rather than late,” Grimes said. “Just the unlimited amount of visits, they can come by, I can talk to (Andrea) Hudy, the strength coach, and just get a little head-start before I get on the actual college campus.”

When he does, Grimes, like Self, expects to make an immediate impact. He said he wants to continue to develop his consistency from behind the 3-point line before arriving at Kansas and added that he would continue to build his all-around game in the process.

KU assistant coach Jerrance Howard, along with Self, played a huge role in enticing Grimes to Kansas and the newest Jayhawk said Wednesday that the bonds he felt with those two, along with how comfortable he was around the current team on his visit, made Kansas feel like home.

“I think that's the biggest key when you're picking a college, the relationship you build with the head coach,” Grimes said. “Me and Coach Self have a great relationship. He was at almost every game of mine in the summer and Coach Howard was in every week just to see me, check on me, calling me almost every day. Just to see how committed they were really set the tone right there.”

Grimes becomes the fourth player to commit to and sign with Kansas during the early signing period, giving Self and company a fast start to what is shaping up to be one of their most impressive recruiting classes at Kansas.

Adding Grimes to a class that already included point guard Devon Dotson (6-1, 180, No. 17 per Rivals.com), Silvio De Sousa (6-9, 245, No. 25) and David McCormack (6-10, 280, No. 33), vaulted KU back into the No. 2 spot on Rivals.com's team rankings for the 2018 class.

With more scholarships to give out and Self and his coaching staff still searching to add more talent, there's no telling just how strong the 2018 class could end up. But even if they don't add another player, Self seemed overjoyed with how things have played out thus far.

“We are very excited about this class,” Self said. “The four we've signed are high IQ basketball guys that understand how to play with other good players.”

Comments

Steve Zimmerman

Welcome to Jayhawk family, Mr. Grimes!

I'm very excited. This has got to be the best recruiting class ever at KU! Hopefully Dok stays one more year!

1 month ago

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Brent Held

Love how this class is taking shape, just wish all the fans would be equally supportive to ride out the rough decade of football. All they do is complain. Show continued support and recruits will notice. Eventually it has to turn around. That is all.

1 month ago

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Suzi Marshall

This is a happy and good thing that just happened...and is happening for the BBall team. Why splash all the ice cold water on it by mentioning that particular autumn sport?

1 month ago

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Brian Leslie

Take it to ANY football thread; this is the happy thread of getting our best shooting guard recruit in many, many years. Check out his highlight footage -- Quentin Grimes is going to play many years in the NBA. His body control is unreal.

1 month ago

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Craig Carson

dont blame the KU fans for NOT supporting its FB team..the FB hasnt done ANYTHING since Mangino left to give us reason to be supportive...hard to support a team that struggles to beat FBS schools in the first 2 games to secure its ONLY win of the year then spends the rest of the season getting blown out...It seems Mangino will have the last laugh since he has lowly Iowa State going to a bowl game while being raked this season...Ill support them when they can win more than 3 games in a 3 year span

1 month ago

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Bryce Landon

Uh, Mangino was fired by Paul Rhoads two seasons ago, and Matt Campbell is leading the Cyclones these days...

1 month ago

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Suzi Marshall

The Hawks will be loaded next year with young talent. We will probably be in the same position UK is in this year... except we will have elite PG(s). We will get an early read of the new team because right away we'll be going up against an experienced MSU team at the Champions Classic in Indy.

1 month ago

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Brian Leslie

Don't forget the Lawson brothers and Charlie Moore and Sam Cunliffe. We could literally have every current player as of Nov. 16. 2017 leave and still have a top-10 / top-15 team. 4th-year-in-college Dedric Lawson correlates to a very, very highly ranked player coming in as a college freshman. If we get Vick and Azabuike back, that's a championship contender for sure.

1 month ago

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Craig Carson

KU still wont be in the same boat as UK..sure they will have a lot of Freshmen, but they will also have the Lawsons twins , Charlie Moore and Cunliffe..that right there is some experience..UK literally had 1 player who played any real minutes last season

1 month ago

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Len Shaffer

Fantastic news!!! And I love the way he talks about the process!

Welcome to the Jayhawk family, Quentin!

1 month ago

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Brett McCabe

So, any correlation to Self being inducted and the uptick in recruiting? Grimes even mentioned HOF in his statements. I know, I know, it's not the only reason, but it's got to help, right?

1 month ago

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Tony Bandle

If nothing else, it puts HCBS at the same perceived level of Williams, Brown, Calipari, Coach K, Izzo, Bonhiem, etc.

1 month ago

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Bryce Landon

Bill Self has a long way - and several more Final Four appearances - to go before he can be at the same level of any of those guys.

1 month ago

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Craig Carson

im sure being in the HOF helps A LOT..but I think also Self may have finally figured out how to better appeal to the top recruits..plus he'll have more roster turnover than he usually has

1 month ago

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Jacob Zutterman

Where is the “fire Jay Howard “ guy?

1 month ago

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Marius Rowlanski

He is either fighting for another great recruit OR hunting down some of the best weed found in Lawrence.

In all seriousness, Howard has delivered (with help) David McCormick, Quentin Grimes, Cliff Alexander, Marcus Garrett, Markese Jacobs, and has kept us in the running for Romeo Langford.r

Obviously, he has missed out on several recruits who went elsewhere but he is a proven recruiter backed up by his success at Kansas.

1 month ago

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Bryce Landon

Welcome to Kansas, Quentin!

1 month ago

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Danny Hernandez

Welcome Quentin,
The season's barely started and I'm already looking forward to next year, not fair

1 month ago

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Mallory Briggans

Off topic but worth mentioning.

46 points .....15 rebounds
7 assists ... 7 blocks....

Joel Embiid stat line last night
Great night !!!!

1 month ago

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Fred Davis

As a Jayhawk in Houston, I’m looking forward to making a couple trips to the Woodlands to see this kid in action.... Rock Chalk....

1 month ago

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Andy Godwin

Including this season and last, it is becoming clear that more highly rated high school guards are looking towards Kansas. Abandoning the high-low and playing the four guard line up out of necessity has lead to a new view nationally of the style of Kansas basketball. Although KU has always played through their guards since Self, having Frank win every award last year and Self being named to the Hall of Fame has created the perfect storm for recruiting in a year when KU will need to truly reload.

“I think that's the biggest key when you're picking a college, the relationship you build with the head coach,” Grimes said. “Me and Coach Self have a great relationship. He was at almost every game of mine in the summer and Coach Howard was in every week just to see me, check on me, calling me almost every day. Just to see how committed they were really set the tone right there.”

1 month ago

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Craig Carson

with 3 capable big men next year (Lawson, DeSousa, McCormack) look for Self to go back to the high low offense..that is the style that got him into the HOF and its what got him his 2 FF and NC..the small ball was out of necessity..trust, if Azibuike had been healthy last year you would have seen him and Lucas starting

1 month ago

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RJ King

or if Bragg had panned out. Or if Perry still had eligibility.

1 month ago

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Bryce Landon

Didn't you know? Perry has unlimited eligibility! He said so himself! :D

1 month ago

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Daniel Cummings

I'm thrilled Quentin chose to become the newest member of the Jayhawk Nation. Warm welcome! Does anyone have any insights on where this leaves us in Romeo Langford's eyes? Is he destined to be a Hoosier?

1 month ago

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Trent Rose

I think everyone from this year would have to leave in order to have a chance at Langford or Williamson. Assuming Vick, Newman, Azibuike, Preston all leave early, KU will have nine players looking at playing time for next year (D. Lawson, KJ Lawson, Moore, Cunliffe, Garrett, Grimes, Dotson, De Sousa, McCormack).

1 month ago

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Tony Bandle

Don't forget Lightfoot!

1 month ago

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Tony Bandle

Of all the players currently on the team, all of those players who will be returning next season and all of the new players that will be coming in, I am still most intrigued with Mr. Garrett. Just from what I have seen, I think he is a hidden, four year gem that will make an accumulated impact on KU basketball that will eventually out distance any of the other players we are now discussing.

I think that, in the end, he will "out-Vick", Vick as a dynamically improving impact player and follow Frank and Devonte as a team leader. Just a thought and please feel free to comment.

1 month ago

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Daniel Cummings

I like your thinking here. I didn't get to see the first game but what I saw against UK with Marcus was definitely encouraging. I think HCBS has said he has (like all four in this newest class) a very high basketball IQ. That said, I don't want to take anything away from LaGerald. He is a freakish athlete and I look for great things from him this coming year and possibly beyond.

1 month ago

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Jaston Archie

Wow, this class is unbelievable and not finished yet! National championship next season

1 month ago

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Harlan Hobbs

You're right on the mark as usual, Tony. Marcus could potentially be a 4 year player, and if he is, he will be one of the leaders of the team within another year or two.

He's already displaying more than most people probably thought he would as a freshman, and he appears to be the perfect type of player for a Bill Self program - - he's unselfish, quick, rebounds, and plays great defense. Then, with the three pointer he made against UK, you can see his offensive potential.

1 month ago

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Brad Pottorff

And don't forget, we are still in the mix for Zion Williamson, who could very well end up being the icing on top of this FINE recruiting cake Bill Self and company are baking!

1 month ago

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Suzi Marshall

forget Zion. Yes he likes everything about KU but he's really close to his mom and his mom wants him to stay close to home. Clemson or UNC...UK is the long shot.

1 month ago

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Mallory Briggans

Zion is a longshot at best ......

1 month ago

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Yonatan Negash

Dok, Vick, and Newman will be returning next year.

Looking at the current NBA draft board, none are rated high enough to forego to the NBA.

There is a lot of talent ahead of those players.

Unless they have a breakthrough season, I don't see them leaving.

Also, think more recruits will be join KU next season.

What a great problem to have.

1 month ago

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Barry Weiss

Idk, as Dok keeps coming on, I think he will be gone. You just don't have many 7 foot 280 studs coming out of college each year. I think he'll get into the top 15 of the draft. Sure hope I'm wrong and we get him back.

1 month ago

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Yonatan Negash

Barry, I honestly don't see Dok leaving. Currently, there are eight (8) centers ranked ahead of him.

Besides, given his injury-riddled freshmen year, this is considered his first full season.

Which means two things 1.) he has room to develop 2.) not sure the NBA has seen enough to draft him.

Of course, it's good for us because we'll get him back for another year.

The only risk I see is Vick potentially having a breakthrough year and getting drafted.

However, as of this moment, I don't see Newman or Dok leaving.

1 month ago

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Shannon Gustafson

He didn't have an injury-riddled freshman year. He had one freak injury that cost him the majority of the season.

If anything, I'd say the fact that the modern NBA has trended away from traditional bigs that can't shoot from more than a couple feet from the basket, and his free throw stroke indicates he's got little hope of ever having a good shot from distance, are the biggest detriments to his NBA hopes for next year.

1 month ago

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Joe Baker

Welcome QG

The word is Langford is awaiting Vick's direction. If Vick has the year he is showing right now and maintains consistency, he is likely gone. Either way with or without Vick, we should be fine. Vick stays Langford is a Hoosier. Vick leaves, Langford is Jayhawk.

1 month ago

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Steve Zimmerman

My only concern with Grimes is his Defense. Hopefully, he understands coach Self's priority for starters..

1 month ago

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