Jayhawks’ Morris twins declare for NBA draft
Friday, April 8, 2011
Kansas fans hoped the incredible closeness between twin brothers Marcus and Markieff Morris would persuade them to stay together for their senior season.
The fear of the NBA draft splitting them up for the first time in their lives would convince them to enjoy one last year, everybody seemed to hope.
Instead, the “Twin Towers,” as they’ve become affectionately known in Allen Fieldhouse, announced Thursday they’re leaving after their junior season and heading for the NBA.
Born minutes apart, the forwards from Philadelphia led the Jayhawks in scoring, rebounding and blocked shots last season, when the Jayhawks went 35-3, won the Big 12 regular-season and tournament titles, and advanced to the regional finals as a No. 1 seed in the NCAA tournament.
“I have enjoyed my three seasons as a Kansas Jayhawk, and consider it a privilege to have had the opportunity to play for coach (Bill) Self and his staff,” Marcus Morris said in a statement. “It was a difficult decision, but I feel it’s the right time for me to realize my dream.”
Markieff, 7 minutes older and an inch taller than 6-foot-8 Marcus, said he would “always remember my time as a Jayhawk.”
Raw and unpolished when they arrived, the twins matured into two of the best players of the Self Era and were part of three Big 12 regular-season titles and two Big 12 tournament championships. During their time at Kansas, the Jayhawks were 95-17 (84.8 percent).
Marcus, a second-team All-American, averaged 17.2 points and 7.6 rebounds last season, while Markieff was an honorable-mention All-American after averaging 13.6 points and 8.3 rebounds.
Their decision came a day after junior guard Tyshawn Taylor and sophomore forward Thomas Robinson announced they would remain at Kansas next season.