Christian Garrett is a man of two main paths: faith and basketball. He believes that God has placed him on a journey in life and Garrett takes advantage of each step he's given. His journey began in Los Angeles, California where, as a child, he played every sport possible until basketball captured the heart of the young athlete.
"I thought basketball was the most fun and from that point I just got better at it," Garrett said. "I honestly just had a desire that I really wanted to be good at it. That's what drove me back then and still drives me, I just want to be good at it no matter what. It's caused me to push through tons of walls. It's just a sport that I love."
…Fast forward four years and Garrett hasn't lost his footing in either path. He has blossomed into not only a great young man, but a tremendous leader on a team searching for an 11th-straight Big 12 Conference regular-season championship. Garrett's role is primarily on the 'red team.' The red team's responsibility is to learn the opponent's tendencies and plays prior to game day.
The red team isn't glamourous or flashy and conducts its business fairly anonymously, yet the group has every bit to do with KU's success. Though Garrett and his fellow red team members don't receive as much attention as they should, their role is extremely important to this historic program. Fans across Jayhawk nation see the team play each week and follow the wins and losses closely, but one thing fans don't have the chance to see is the hard work that goes on behind the scenes and how many hours these guys put in a week while balancing school and any type of livelihood. Every Jayhawk puts in long days of class, workouts and practice - the red teams' days just don't stop there.
…"The few things I've always said to all the freshmen is you have to really trust the process here," said Garrett. "There will always be some bumps and rough patches, but you have to trust it and see it unfold. Another thing I tell them is to put the extra time in. Extra time in the gym or watching film or meeting with coaches, that stuff goes along way and the guys who are successful are the ones who do that. This freshman class is doing great and everybody is buying in. It hasn't been that hard to get them to buy in, but now we have to produce. "
…"I remember a long time ago someone asked me if I had a dream school and what it would be like," said Garrett. "I was living in Los Angeles at the time so I only knew Pac-12 schools, but I thought my dream school would be one with a ton of tradition, that wins a lot and would provide the chance to win a championship at a big school. I remember saying that but not thinking much about it. After being in Lawrence, I realized that's exactly where I'm at."
A Kansas State student who took part in the court storming following a men’s basketball game against Kansas on Monday at Bramlage Coliseum has been cited for disorderly conduct, university police announced Wednesday.
K-State police identified Nathan Power as the fan who appeared to deliberately collide shoulder-first with Kansas forward Jamari Traylor as he exited the floor.
…“Nathan Power voluntarily met with K-State police and was issued a notice to appear for disorderly conduct,” Kansas State University said in a news release. “Power was cooperative throughout the process, and the K-State Police Department considers this matter closed.”
The Big 12 Conference issued a public reprimand to Kansas State for its handling of the postgame following the Wildcats’ 70-63 upset victory over No. 8 Kansas on Monday night at Bramlage Coliseum.
…Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowslby said the league would look into prohibiting spectators from entering the playing field, which the Southeastern Conference punishes with a $5,000 fine against schools for a first offense.
“I am grateful for the immediate and professional engagement of the leadership at Kansas State University regarding the game management issues experienced after the game,” Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby said in a release. “Having stated that, the interaction of spectators with players, coaches, and staff members was inappropriate and unacceptable.”
Bowlsby also addressed profane chants directed at KU that could be heard during the game broadcast.
“I have asked that discussions on both of these topics be placed on the agendas for the next meetings of the ADs and of the CEOs. … The events following the KU vs. K-State game should be a call to action for all of us.”
Complete release here
Things are different in the Big 12. It's not because the conference is always better, though it is this season. It's not because of profile, or geography, or tradition or money. It's not about any of the other things that ostensibly factor into the perception of a league.
It's about Kansas. It's about 10 straight regular-season conference titles. It's about a run of success in a power conference unmatched in the modern history of the sport -- a decade spent ruling over one of the college game's most competitive associations, with no down seasons, no rebuilding years -- and about the rest of that league's desperate attempt to to intercede before title No. 11.
On Wednesday night, No. 19 Baylor won 79-70 at No. 12 Iowa State. In doing so, the Bears handed ISU its first home loss of the season. They solidified their own status as one of the most surprising, impressive and constantly improving teams in the country. They shot the lights out from 3, which is less a noteworthy statistical aberration than an indicator of their chief offensive strength. And the Bears -- however unwittingly -- made it all the more likely Kansas will end the 2014-15 regular season alone atop the Big 12 standings.
…The conference might not have two national title contenders like the ACC. Relative to Wisconsin, Gonzaga, Villanova, Arizona and Kentucky, Kansas might not even qualify as one. But what the Big 12 does have is genuine, long-term, legacy-level intrigue surrounding its regular-season conference title. That it is also the best league in the country, and one still collectively chasing the Jayhawks, is merely a bonus. In most leagues, in most seasons, the regular-season conference title is just a thing. In the Big 12, it's everything. Nowhere else are the stakes so high.
When Kansas basketball fans think of the introduction video played before the starting lineup announcement, they think of the chills that run down their spine.
The “goose bumps” feeling is what Douglas Shepperd, lead composer of the Kansas men’s basketball introduction videos, is looking for when creating the ultimate introduction video. The feeling needs to provide energy for the fans, he said.
The video needs to encompass the right amount of history with a mixture of what Shepperd likes to call “dope” music. He estimates the music is 80 percent of what makes the video.
“It’s weird saying audio is 80 percent of a video, but in the environment that it’s played and the timing that its played, I feel like the music coupled with the clips that Kansas fans know and love can throw it to the next level,” Shepperd said. “That’s when it gets super exciting.”
In 2005, when the videoboard debuted in the Allen Fieldhouse, the background music to the introduction video was a U2 hit, When the Streets Have No Name.
The song everyone hears in today’s video is Requiem For a Dream by Lux Aeterna.
The Kansas players feed off the crowd’s reaction from the videos. Perry Ellis said he has a great time watching the introduction videos before every home game.
“Just hearing the fans get pumped up about it, for highlights from all the previous people that have been here, it gets us motivated and gets us ready for the game,” Ellis said.
Dylan Klohr, a junior from Overland Park, is a part of the camping leadership team. He said he started camping when he was a freshman.
“I was invited by a couple of my friends to camp,” Klohr said. “Being at KU and having basketball games is a big part of what KU is about.”
Klohr took over camping near the middle of Kansas’ conference schedule of games. He said while there are other organized camping groups around the country, there is something special about Kansas that makes its camping system unique.
“It has a lot of history behind it. Just being at the place where basketball started, having history is everything,” Klohr said. “Our history is what makes it unique. It’s part of what makes KU basketball as fun as it is. Lining up all week, going to lottery, it proves the interest of the students that they’re proud of their program.”
Pacey said he believes basketball camping has become a University tradition.
“I’d say we have about as much participation as homecoming,” Pacey said. “That’s pretty big.”
Klohr echoed these sentiments.
“It is one of the best known traditions in regards to KU basketball,” Klohr said. “I was told all the way in junior high school that camping was going on at KU. My parents used to talk to me about how camping happened back in the ‘80s.”
There is little doubt that camping out for basketball games has helped create one of the best environments for college basketball. It gives the students freedom to participate in one of the top programs in college basketball. Eventually, camping could even be seen as akin to waving the wheat and the “Rock Chalk” chant as one of the top traditions of a University built on tradition.
ESPN VIDEO: Holly Rowe reports on Wilt Chamberlain’s struggle for civil rights in Lawrence
adidas and Kansas men's basketball launched their latest look of the 2014-15 season Thursday morning, this time unveiling the Made in March uniform system for the Jayhawks to wear during the 2015 postseason.
Designed with adidas' most innovative and advanced apparel and footwear technology, the uniform system is designed to help the Jayhawks play at their highest levels during college basketball's biggest moments.
The new uniforms feature enlarged Jayhawk logos on the shorts and an extended waistband that allows players to rep the Crimson and Blue even when wearing home whites. Evoking a throwback feel, the asymmetrical leg trim on the shorts is inspired by the team's retro uniform styles.
Jerseys were designed with the same lightweight, sweat-wicking technology used in the NBA and targeted ventilation zones on the chest, back and side to keep players cool even in the most intense moments of the game. A perforated pattern on the shorts maximizes comfort and breathability as each contest heats up.
For a finishing touch, the Jayhawks will lace up the latest adidas basketball footwear, including the new colorways of the D Lillard 1, J Wall 1 and D Rose Boost 5 signature shoes from NBA All-Stars Damian Lillard, John Wall and Derrick Rose.
The Made in March uniform system could debut on the court as early as the Big 12 Championship (March 11-14) inside Sprint Center in Kansas City, Missouri. Fans can get their gear prior to postseason play as select replica jerseys and shorts will soon be available at KUStore in Allen Fieldhouse, campus bookstores, participating retailers and at KUStore.com. KU's most recent footwear will also be available at adidas.com.
Thomas Robinson went from shocked to happy Tuesday upon hearing the 76ers had claimed him off waivers.
"I was happy because the Sixers made it clear that they wanted me here," Robinson said before Wednesday's game against the Milwaukee Bucks. "At the end of the day, I'm happy."
Robinson had been placed on waivers Sunday by the Denver Nuggets. The 23-year-old was initially shocked because he agreed to play with Brooklyn on Monday. He had to clear waivers Tuesday evening before signing a contract. But the Sixers intervened.
Robinson arrived in Milwaukee from New Orleans around 2 p.m. Wednesday. He shook the hand of Sixers coach Brett Brown and learned he would play against the Bucks.
…"When you are drafted as high as he was drafted with the intelligence you have in the league - people making decisions - somebody saw something there," Brown said of Robinson. "I'm going to have to dig in and sort of pay attention more than I have.
"Right now, it's pretty quick moving and learn how to best use him and give him a chance to be a part of us."
“Pay Heed. The game you love began here. Respect those who came before you. Make their legacy your own. Because destiny favors the dedicated. And rings don’t replace work. In this game you don’t get what you want. You get what you earn. We are Kansas. Together we rise. Rock Chalk Jayhawk!
Big 12 / College News
Baylor was down eight and seemingly destined for its 13th straight loss at Iowa State.
Then the Bears started making shots — seven straight 3s, to be precise — for a stunning late run that sunk the Cyclones.
Taurean Prince scored 20 points and 19th-ranked Baylor upset No. 12 Iowa State on the road 79-70 for its third straight win on Wednesday night.
The Bears (21-7, 9-6 Big 12) shot 14 of 26 from 3-point range and hit their last seven, becoming the first team other than Kansas to win in Ames since 2012.
…Jameel McKay had a career-high 21 points for the Cyclones (20-7, 10-5), whose Big 12 title hopes are suddenly in big trouble.
They're now a game behind the first-place Jayhawks in the Big 12 with just three games to play.
The timeout seemed strange. Baylor just hit a three. A media timeout was coming up.
Yet, Scott Drew called his final timeout anyway, down five with 8 minutes, 8 seconds to go.
Turns out, he knew what he was doing. It took an unorthodox move to pull off the unlikely — have a road team win at Hilton Coliseum.
And with it, the 19th-ranked Baylor men’s basketball team went on a 19-4 run, securing its first win in Ames, snapping Iowa State’s 21-game home winning streak, and denying the 12th-ranked Cyclones a chance at grabbing a share of the Big 12 lead.
No, it couldn’t have gone much worse for ISU after Drew used his timeout.
“I think the last 11 years, I always save one or two and I never needed them so I wasn’t going to save them this year,” Drew said.
They came fast and without mercy. They were efficient and they were ruthless.
Baylor, simply and literally, couldn’t miss.
The 19th-ranked Bears made six consecutive 3-pointers to turn an eight-point deficit into a 79-70 win over No. 12 Iowa State men’s basketball to stop the Cyclones’ 21-game home winning streak and their bid to go into the weekend atop the Big 12.
Baylor (21-7, 9-6 Big 12) trailed 62-54 after a Jameel McKay alley-oop dunk from Georges Niang with 8 minutes, 28 seconds to play before it released a relentless barrage of 3-pointers that saw them score 18 points in under 4 minutes while the Cyclones (20-7, 10-5) sputtered down the stretch and the Bears claimed their first win at Hilton Coliseum.
Former Jayhawker and Wichita State transfer Conner Frankamp's has applied for a diversion in his DUI case.
Frankamp filled out the application Thursday morning in Wichita muncipal court.
Frankamp was arrested in January on a DUI and other traffic-related charges.
Wichita police said the 19-year-old's breath test showed a blood-alcohol content of .186 - more than twice the legal limit.
Police said this was Frankamp's first DUI arrest which mean he faces only misdemeanor charges.
If granted a diversion, Frankamp would have to pay nearly $1,500 in fees.
He's due back in court on April 6.
How to use this database
Using NCAA tournament data since 1985, find out the history for specific seeds, teams, coaches or conferences. See everything from your favorite school's tournament results to how No. 7 seeds have fared against No. 10 seeds in the first round.
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The issue, put simply, is that there aren't many exclusive windows for college basketball prior to February, due to heavy overlap with both college football and the NFL — overlap that has increased in recent years.
College basketball practices now begin as early as September, with scrimmages coming in October and myriad exempt events in November.
Meanwhile, the behemoth that is college football has grown considerably. Its late-November rivalry games and early December championship games have become must-see matchups, and they've taken on an increased importance in the College Football Playoff era. The Playoff itself has extended football season by a week with its championship game.
"It's very hard for basketball to emerge out of that," Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany said. "The fact of it is, it's hard to say there hasn't been dilution (in college basketball's regular season) — the energy is when the conference season starts. There are some nice trips, nice games. But for the most part, it's after the college football (bowl games) are over. Those have just become huge attractions."
…Some coaches like the status quo. They like spacing out 31 regular-season games, and the way there's a few months in the fall for their players to ease into academics before meaningful matchups are played. They like early-season tournaments often held in exotic locales, a chance to both take players on a fun trip and also boost their team's non-conference résumés. They like watching their team grow as the season unfolds. Plus, as Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim put it, "Kids like to play games. I think they'd rather play than practice."
But even those who like the way things are will admit it's a long season. Coaches have to be strategic in the way they both rest their players and run practices. They also have to manage the challenges that come along with two semesters' or quarters' worth of classes.
Most of those interviewed for this story felt college basketball could benefit from fewer early-season games and pushing the season start date back a couple of weeks. There could be negative monetary side effects to that if teams cut home games, but perhaps a financial benefit if teams cut early-season tournaments or neutral-site games (and the subsequent travel costs).
…There's no attractive way to push back the end of the college basketball season, either.
Right after March Madness, there's Major League Baseball's opening day and The Masters — to which longtime NCAA tournament partner CBS also owns the rights.
"There's no way you can play from December 20th (if it were a one-semester sport) and still end a week before The Masters," Kansas coach Bill Self said. "I can't believe they would ever do that. They're not going to move The Masters for college basketball and we need to play longer than that."
The Masters isn't the only scheduling conflict. A couple of weeks after the NCAA tournament ends, the NBA and NHL playoffs begin. With the NCAA tournament's reliance on NBA and NHL arenas as host sites, pushing back the big dance seems impossible.
…There's no easy fix. But if it's worth exploring one piece of this, it's the literal start of the season. Nearly everyone interviewed for this story lamented the lack of a uniform opening day.
"Ideally? I'd ask college football to take a weekend off," Gavitt said. "We start college basketball and have the whole weekend to play games on TV and do creative things. But that's not going to happen. There's too much money involved in that."
Krzyzewski suggested starting the season on Veteran's Day, and having everybody play a game while honoring locally based military. Former Connecticut coach Jim Calhoun liked the idea of starting after Thanksgiving and setting up regional tournaments at venues like Madison Square Garden and the Palestra for East coast teams.
Hoop-math said as of Tuesday, 218 Division I teams were shooting at least 33.3 percent from 3-point range.
Those teams would need to shoot at least 50 percent on 2-pointers to earn the same amount of points — but none of them are.
Gonzaga leads the nation at 47.1 percent on 2-point shots.
"To me, tough 2s lose you basketball games," Mack said. "I think the complete player can get to the basket, can hit an open jump shot from 3, and can put it on the floor and pull up. But I think too much is made of that being a lost art.
"Guys have to learn how to shoot and be able to finish in traffic in today's game. And that (pull-up jumper) to me is the last thing making a guy a complete basketball player."
It's taken some getting used to even for Cyclones like Morris, who is in the camp that the mid-range jumper is "a lost art."
But it's certainly working for Iowa State.
The Cyclones — who installed an NBA 3-point line at their practice facility in part to help avoid stepping on the shorter college one during games — are hitting 56 percent of their 2-point shots, the majority of them from close range, and they've made 205 3-pointers.
"It's repetition. It's getting your guys on the right spots on the floor," Hoiberg said. "You want to try to avoid those shots."
The former North Carolina learning specialist who questioned the literacy level of Tar Heels athletes has reached a settlement to end her lawsuit against the school.
Mary Willingham and school spokesman Rick White confirmed the settlement Tuesday. It comes nearly eight months after she sued, saying she was demoted and the school retaliated against her after she raised concerns -- including low reading levels for athletes and the use of "paper classes" requiring no class attendance to keep athletes eligible -- before ultimately resigning.
Terms of the settlement weren't immediately available, though Willingham said in an email she wouldn't get her job back -- one of the remedies she sought in the lawsuit in addition to financial damages. White said in a statement that the agreement must be approved by a judge before becoming final.
"I wanted to show other potential whistleblowers out there that it's possible to survive a fight with a big-money machine," Willingham said in a statement. "I thought it was time to get focused back on the issue of athletes and their educations -- to correct the injustice in the NCAA system. I'm satisfied with the result."
White said in a statement the settlement "resolves all of the outstanding legal issues in the case."
Three decades later, students at college games are still chanting “Air ball,” like they’ve hit upon something novel. They also yell “You got swatted!” after a blocked shot, and “Left, right, left” to accompany a disqualified player to the bench after his fifth foul.
Come on, guys. While this week’s burning issue is again court-storming, another question: Where’s the ingenuity? Where’s the innovation? Where are the wiles of the Duke student section, which, in the game after it was publicly admonished once for stepping over the line, greeted a wayward official’s call with chants of “We beg to differ!”
OK, Davidson’s swim team has taken to wearing Speedos to incite torment of basketball visitors. But overall, where’s the imagination of the Cal student rooters a few years ago? After considerable cellphone research, they ferreted out the identity of the ex-girlfriend who had just dumped a USC player and befouled his free throws by chanting her first name when he stepped to the line. (He missed both.)
…So give the students at Arizona State props for coming up with something new. Loopy, yes, but different. At a school whose basketball success has been highly sporadic, they’re in the second season of regaling – in some cases, repulsing – fans with the Curtain of Distraction.
At the end of Wells Fargo Arena where opponents shoot free throws in the second half, they’ve fashioned a curtain with a framework of PVC pipe. As the opposing foul shooter steps to the line, the curtain is flung open, revealing a whole range of bizarre acts.
Viewers might see the Richard Simmons twins, two rotund guys in short shorts doing lunges and squats. Sometimes there’s a dude paddling a kayak, being attacked by a shark. Or it could be a takeoff on Miley Cyrus’ “Wrecking Ball.”
“We were definitely nervous,” Anji Kumar, a junior statistics major, told me by phone from ASU last week as she recalled the Curtain’s beginning, “that people weren’t going to like it, thinking it was too obnoxious in general.”
Truth be told, there’s some of that, says Patrick Carlson, a sophomore political science major and another of the 942 Crew’s organizers (named for the seating capacity of the lower student section).
“Kids will tweet us, ‘That’s the stupidest thing I’ve ever seen,’ ” Carlson says.
The perpetrators agree, though, that the reaction has been more positive than negative.
“Their creativity has fast become legend,” says Herb Sendek, the ASU coach. “A lot of people are really getting a kick out of it. It seems like I’ve done more interviews about the Curtain of Distraction than any other topic.”
No wonder Sendek likes it. Numbers from associate AD Bill Kennedy, who oversees the group, reveal that in the two seasons of the Curtain opponents are hitting just 61.4 percent of their free throws facing it, compared to 75.3 at that end the year before. This year, they’ve hit 66.7 at the orderly end, 62.7 when encountering two horseheads making out.
Xavier Rathan-Mayes has been a steady presence for Florida State as a freshman, but his offensive game was lagging Wednesday night. The Ontario native, a former high school teammate of Andrew Wiggins, had only five points through the first 35 minutes of the Seminoles' game at Miami.
But you could say he finished strong.
Rathan-Mayes scored 30 points in the final 4:38, mixing 3-pointers and free throws in a scoring spree that left observers in disbelief.
…It started with a 3-pointer at the 4:38 mark, and he would make five more from long range before the end of the game — including one on which he was fouled, leading to a four-point play.
He scored 26 consecutive points for the Seminoles in a 3:35 span before teammate Robbie Berwick interjected with a 3-pointer of his own (off an assist from Rathan-Mayes). Four more free throws from Rathan-Mayes closed out the scoring for the visitors, but it wasn't enough.
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