Kansas basketball: Where will Jalen Wilson excel this season?

Pulling his name from the 2021 NBA Draft pool, redshirt sophomore guard Jalen Wilson will be returning to an exciting Kansas basketball roster.

Wilson was an integral member of the Jayhawks’ starting five last season and will be looked to for offensive production once again.

He’s become one of Kansas’ more talented guards, however, his numbers on both ends of the floor have been fluctuating through highs and lows.

The All-Big 12 freshman wasn’t particularly productive from the perimeter when the 2020-21 season ended. During the last four games of the schedule, Wilson scored less than 10 points per game and shot 2 of 11 from three-point range.

One could say fans should’ve seen more from Wilson during Kansas’ second-round loss to USC, where he would only see nine minutes due to issues with Covid-19. He wasn’t at full strength and was unable to provide a genuine performance at a pivotal point of the Jayhawks’ March run.

Despite returning for his third year with Kansas, Wilson has only one season’s worth of genuine college experience. This was a glaring factor that lowered his draft stock and kept scouts on the fence this spring.

Improvement offensively will be essential, as building a reputation at the hoop will support his marketability to NBA franchises. Head coach Bill Self should expect Wilson to contribute even more this year on the floor, especially from the three.

The good news is, his additional will give him the chance to make significant strides in his game, particularly from the three-point line. He’s been a proven perimeter threat at times, even knocking down four crucial threes to push past No. 19 Creighton in 2020.

No doubt, Wilson is one of the Big 12’s most athletic ballplayers, and choosing to add another year to his resume was the right move for the 20-year-old in the long run.

It’s only a matter of time before we’ll see the Dallas native return to the floor. This season represents a shot at exponential growth for Wilson in terms of NBA attention and could be the stepping stone he needs to turn pro.