Since missing out on elite guards Demetrius Jackson and Anthony Barber, Kansas has been working tirelessly to land a floor general for its 2013 recruiting class. They finally succeeded Monday, landing 6-foot point guard Frank Mason (Petersburg, Va./Massanutten). He committed to the Jayhawks over offers from Alabama, Virginia Tech, Seton Hall, Rutgers, Providence, South Carolina and Maryland.
This past weekend, Mason took an official visit to Kansas with his parents. Once he returned home, his mind was made up that Kansas was the right program for him.
"When I got off the plane I knew Kansas is where I wanted to be, I just wanted to confirm everything with my parents," Mason said.
The program’s pedigree played a vital role in Mason coming to his decision.
"Look at Coach [Bill] Self's winning percentage, it's unbelievable, and I like the players in the program,” Mason said. “They are the type of guys I enjoy being around."
Self was named the Naismith College Coach of the Year in 2012 and holds a career record of 269-53 at Kansas. He’s also led the team to eight consecutive Big 12 titles. Pretty impressive numbers to turn down.
Another big reason he selected Kansas is his desire to win a championship. " Winning is important to me, and that's a big reason I selected Kansas," he said. “I am excited to be part of their great tradition."
The point guard position is so vital to the success of every program, so it was crucial for Kansas to secure this commitment with the major lead guard market drying up quickly.
"Mason is a strong ball handler who plays at two different speeds. He plays hard at both ends of the floor and is a terrific passer as he controls the game," says Ty White, who coached him for four years at Petersburg.
Mason creates contact with his dribble penetration and strength and takes advantage when his defender is off balance or up in the air to draw the whistle. Despite being only 6-feet, Mason can bench press up to 245 pounds and has a body that can handle the bumps and physical play of the Big 12. One glaring area that he needs to improve in is becoming a more consistent shooter from long range.
Mason helped Petersburg amass a 78-4 record with a pair of state finals appearances but was unable to walk away with any hardware. Competing for championships has become the norm at Kansas, so Mason could soon have an opportunity to capture that elusive title.