Kansas basketball: Former Jayhawk struggling vastly at new Big 12 school

Ernest Udeh Jr. isn't faring too well at his new school

Dec 9, 2023; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; TCU Horned Frogs center Ernest Udeh Jr. (8) reaches for a ball against the Clemson Tigers
Dec 9, 2023; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; TCU Horned Frogs center Ernest Udeh Jr. (8) reaches for a ball against the Clemson Tigers / John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports
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Perhaps the most disappointing fallout from the 2023 Kansas basketball offseason was the decision by Ernest Udeh Jr. to transfer out of Lawrence. It was a domino effect after Hunter Dickinson committed to the Jayhawks in May. However, he hasn't taken the jump many fans expected at his new school in Forth Worth.

Udeh has appeared in each of TCU's nine games but is averaging just 3.1 points and 5.1 rebounds per night. Although he has seen more time on the floor — 15 minutes per game one year after averaging 8.3 with Kansas — his statistics are not much better. His field goal percentage has also dipped from 75.6% to an even 50%.

Foul trouble still plagues the former 4-star recruit. As of Dec. 20, he has 21 fouls and 28 points scored. He averages 6.2 fouls per 40 minutes and has a lot of work to do in terms of defensive technique. The former McDonald's All-American struggled with the same issue in Lawrence.

Although defense is his forte, one thing that limits Udeh's game is his one-dimensional offensive skill set. Aside from running the floor and catching alley-oops, he offers very little on the other end of the floor. He lacks the ability to score in the post and isn't a capable free throw or jump shooter.

Last year, Udeh showed flashes of what he could be, and fans had high hopes for him in the future. Many people thought he could start at center one day. He likely would have seen a similar role as a second-year player under Bill Self, but Udeh wasn't willing to wait it out and develop into a great player for the Jayhawks. Now, he is in a similar boat at TCU with Jamie Dixon and must step up his game soon to earn the trust of his coach.


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