Kansas forward Kevin Young will try out for the Puerto Rico Senior National Team later this month. The Puerto Rico national squad will vie for one of three final spots for the 2012 Summer Olympics in London by competing in the FIBA Olympic World Qualifying Tournament July 2-8 in Caracas, Venezuela. A total of 12 teams will be in the competition.
"I'm totally on board for Kevin to get the opportunity to try out for Puerto Rico," Kansas head coach Bill Self said. "We are still a ways away from knowing details to see if he has a legitimate shot."
Young, who will be entering his senior season at Kansas in 2012-13, was a top reserve for the Jayhawks last year appearing in 38 games and averaging 11.4 minutes, 3.4 points and 3.0 rebounds. The 6-8, 195-pound, Perris, Calif., native's mother's (Alicia Morales) parents, Young's grandparents, were born in Puerto Rico, hence qualifying him to try out for the team.
"I got a phone call that workouts were going to be soon and if I wanted to come out and try to earn a spot I could," Young said. "I want to finish up exams, then go home for a little bit and see my mom and my brother and sister, then on to Puerto Rico. It's a good opportunity to get my face shown over there so if I don't make it this time, I can be there on the next try. It's always fun to go back to Puerto Rico."
Young is no stranger to representing Puerto Rico. He was a member its national team which competed in the FIBA U19 World Championships in Auckland, New Zealand, in July 2009. Young averaged 7.7 points and 5.0 rebounds in the U19 games where Puerto Rico went 5-4. Led by former Jayhawk Tyshawn Taylor, Team USA won the gold medal at the 2009 FIBA U19 World Championships.
"I'm really excited," Young said of his tryout. "It's a great opportunity and a chance for me to get better at basketball."