It's a heavy weight to place upon any future Kansas player. But a man who knows the skills of J.R. Giddens very well -- coach Albert Johnson -- felt very comfortable in stating a fond thought for today for any Jayhawk fan.
"He reminds me of how Paul Pierce plays," said Johnson, who helps coach Giddens during the winter at Marshall High School and at summer AAU events for Athletes First.
"He can go outside and bury the deep jumper and he can finish with style in transition. He is a great athlete too."
Giddens, 6-5 and 188-pounds, averaged 25 points and 7.4 rebounds last season as a junior. He will play for Athletes First this summer at the Showcase. Giddens will also attend the NIKE event in Indianapolis.
"He shot the ball 43 percent from beyond the three," Johnson said. "He can jump with anyone. And he is getting better each game."
Giddens will likely have one more challenge ahead -- academics. Giddens has taken the test twice. He is awaiting results from the last test. Giddens has also signed up for the next try.
The nice part about this side of the story is Giddens is just a junior. He will have the opportunity to improve on the test and has several more chances to do so in the coming months. But Giddens certainly would like to get it before he starts his summer ball.
"He's a hard worker," Johnson said. "He also a great kid. Kansas fans will love him. He is an exciting player."
Will Kansas fans recall Paul Pierce when they see Giddens? "I think so," Johnson said. "Same type of player. Same style."