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KUAD: Dynamic duo leads Kansas past SD State
Kansas men's basketball players signed autographs for approximately 1,000 fans for more than an hour at the Hy-Vee Hawk Zone prior to KU's football victory against South Dakota State Saturday.
"We enjoy coming out, seeing these fans and showing support for the football team," senior center Jeff Withey said. "We go to all the home (football) games. It's a great atmosphere and with Coach (Charlie) Weis, there is a lot of excitement for this year's team."
"Right now we are doing individuals (workouts), lifting and getting ready for boot camp," Withey, the 2012 Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year who set the KU single-season blocked shot record last year, said.
New Orleans Hornets guard Xavier Henry — who had been working out in the Big Easy after undergoing arthroscopic knee surgery on July 27 — hopped in his car and headed north last Monday, just a few hours ahead of Hurricane Isaac.
“I was down there with some of my teammates getting ready for the season early because we’re so young,” said Henry, a 21-year-old, third-year pro out of Kansas University.
“We’re trying to get acclimated with each other. They told us Hurricane Isaac was coming and didn’t know how bad it would be, so they let us evacuate. I went home (to Oklahoma City) and got some treatment then came here,” Henry added before the KU-South Dakota State football game Saturday outside Memorial Stadium.
…“It’s great to be out here because the atmosphere at Kansas is something I’ve never been around ever in my life. It was the best time I’ve ever had in my life,” Henry said of his year as a Jayhawk, in which he averaged 13.4 points and 4.4 rebounds per game.
…Henry on Saturday provided an update on his brother, former KU guard C.J. Henry, who transferred to Southern Nazarene University in Oklahoma City after also playing one season at KU.
“He’s getting back into baseball again. He’s having fun with that, working out a lot back home (OKC),” Xavier said of C.J., a former first-round draft pick of the New York Yankees. “He’s waiting for this offseason to get back in (and sign with an MLB team). He’s doing his best right now to get in baseball shape, get everything in focus. I don’t know how much hard work it takes for baseball, but he’s definitely putting it in.”
C.J. is 26 years old, five years older than Xavier.
“I’d be a senior this year. Me, Elijah and T-Rob (Thomas Robinson, Sacramento Kings) came in together,” said Henry, who enjoyed visiting with former teammates Elijah Johnson and Travis Releford on Saturday at a basketball team autograph signing session for fans on KU’s football practice field. “It’s nice to come back. Everybody still enjoys me and appreciates what I’ve done, and I appreciate everything they’ve done for me as well. I love this place.”
On Monday night I had a couple beers with two guys with the UNHCR. They were basketball fans and told me that during the NBA playoffs they would get up at 3:00 every morning to watch NBA games on the TV in the dining hall. They wanted to talk about basketball and I wanted to ask them about their experiences living in Kakuma and working with refugees every day. One of the guys is actually from Mason City, Iowa, which is 45 minutes away from where I grew up. I’m pretty sure we played against each other in 8th grade. The world is a small place. I really admire them for the work they do day in and day out. Each day they wake up, eat in the same dining hall and spend their time doing what they can to try to provide basic needs for people. They see some pretty heartbreaking stuff and they don’t get discouraged. One of the guys had been living and working there for 7 years. I also admire them for introducing me to the African beer Tusker, which is delicious, but I digress.
One thing I have taken away from this trip is the realization that there is a huge network of people like these guys at UNHCR, and the staff at UNICEF, all around the world who want to make the world better and are actually doing something about it. We all feel terrible about children dying because of preventable diseases and malnutrition, but these people are committing their lives to help children survive and go on to live better and more productive lives. They are true heroes.
If the city’s proposed $24 million recreation center in northwest Lawrence becomes a huge draw for regional and national youth sporting tournaments, it won’t be because Bill Self or Kansas University officials put their marketing power behind it.
Officials at KU confirmed that NCAA rules will not allow the athletics department to become involved in promoting the proposed center.
“We can’t be involved with that at all,” Jim Marchiony, an associate athletic director for KU, said of promoting the city facility.
That is different from what city officials once thought.
“I know when we were first thinking about this project, I thought Bill Self could make a call and land us ‘X’ number of tournaments,” said City Commissioner Hugh Carter. “We know now that is not how it works, but we’ll still have a lot of synergy with KU basketball.”
Carter said the recent announcement that the original rules of basketball will be housed in Lawrence will be a major drawing card for regional and national tournaments.
Mayor Bob Schumm said he still thinks KU will be a major asset to the success of the city’s fieldhouse, even if the university can’t be directly involved in marketing the facility.
As proposed, the 50-acre recreation complex at the northwest corner of Sixth Street and the South Lawrence Trafficway will include the city-operated recreation center and a university-operated track and field stadium and soccer field.
“They’ll be mutually exclusive, but I think the fact we will have the notoriety of having our facility adjacent to KU’s facility will help elevate our stature with people who are thinking about bringing tournaments here,” Schumm said.
“Quiet on set!”
The camera rolls outside Allen Fieldhouse in Lawrence as Wilt Chamberlain and Phog Allen stroll down the sidewalk, the young man a Sequoia next to the legendary coach.
Allen is trying to convince the 18-year-old phenom to leave his Philadelphia home to come play basketball for the University of Kansas.
“It’s predestined,” the coach pitches. “You’re one of a kind, son.”
Chamberlain looks up at the fieldhouse, hulking and formidable in the shadows of the night.
“I wanna learn from you,” he declares, tapping his finger on the coach’s chest. “I wanna be the best that I can be.”
“So,” Allen says cautiously, “I could arrange for a flight from Philadelphia for your return?”
Chamberlain grins. “I like to drive.”
They laugh as they shake hands and walk off the set.
“Let’s do it again, guys,” yells out director Kevin Willmott.
On this warm August night, cast and crew are set up outside the home of Kansas basketball to film a pivotal scene for “Jayhawkers,” Willmott’s sixth full-length film.
The KU film professor’s independent movies get noticed. “C.S.A: Confederate States of America” and “The Only Good Indian” premiered at the prestigious Sundance Film Festival, and they and others have been shown in theaters around the world and on TV.
Now he’s telling a story about the men who transformed more than basketball in late-1950s Lawrence.
“This is really a great moment in KU history,” Willmott says. “Chancellor (Franklin) Murphy used Wilt to integrate Lawrence and to integrate KU.”
The movie won’t come out until early next year. But passing the hat online whipped up loud word-of-mouth in recent weeks. Willmott and his partners raised almost $55,000 in one month on Kickstarter, the crowd-funding website.
Kansas 2012-13 Schedule
Big 12/College News
Fox Sports Kansas City will not air K-State basketball games this season, a network spokesman said Friday.
Fox Sports, which has carried K-State games the last nine season, could not reach a deal with K-State Sports Properties to continue as its third-tier media-rights provider. In past years, Fox Sports has televised 10 men’s basketball games a year — normally home games against lesser opponents — as well as some women’s basketball games and volleyball matches.
Cox Cable and Time Warner Cable could air some of those games this season.
On the eve of Texas Tech's football season kicking off concern and controversy clouds the Red Raiders men's basketball team.
A Texas Tech Athletic Department spokesman confirms Texas Tech Head Basketball Coach Billy Gillispie has been admitted to University Medical Center. FOX 34 is told Gillispie was taken to the emergency room. At last report he was in satisfactory condition, and there is no word on why Gillispie was admitted to the hospital.
However, some players on the men's basketball team went to Athletics Director Kirby Hocutt with a series of complaints, or objections, to some of the ways Gillispie was running the program specifically team practices.
Former players Kevin Wagner and Jaron Nash told CBSSports.com that Gillispie often practiced more than four hours a day and once, last November,went nearly eight hours.
The NCAA permits coaches to practice for no more than four hours per day and 20 per week.
Athletics department spokesman Blayne Beal would only confirm the basics.
"We've been made aware of concerns of the leadership of our men's basketball program, student athletes obviously being our top priority here at Texas Tech," he said. Right now we are devoting our full resources to looking into that matter."
Gillespie said in an interview for a story published in the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal on Saturday that he called 911 early Friday morning after experiencing severe pain.
"It was the worst I've ever felt," Gillispie, 52, told the newspaper. He also said that he was told his blood pressure was dangerously high and that he has been dealing with stress.
University Medical Center spokesman Eric Finley told the Associated Press that Gillispie would stay at the hospital Saturday night and is still in satisfactory condition.
The NCAA’s position that the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill has done nothing wrong by offering bogus classes that helped athletes maintain their eligibility has spurred a wave of skepticism from national sportswriters and others who follow college sports.
“The NCAA concludes no violations in UNC academic scandal,” tweeted Stewart Mandel, a college football writer for Sports Illustrated’s website. “This actually happened.”
Several said the announcement last Friday has given universities looking to gain the advantage in the big-money sports of football and basketball a license to bend the rules. .
If the intent of the no-show classes and independent studies were to keep athletes eligible, the university could face major sanctions that could potentially bring down championship banners for its men’s basketball team. The team won the NCAA tournament in 2005 and 2009.
Basketball is where the NCAA makes the lion share of its revenues. A nonprofit association, its most recently available tax return on Guidestar.org shows nearly all of its $740 million in revenues came from the nationally-televised basketball tournament.
Hence, there is concern that what happened Friday was the NCAA protecting a celebrated, lucrative basketball program.
“I don’t know how the NCAA can justify this,” wrote Michael Rosenberg, another Sports Illustrated columnist. “I don’t understand why Penn State has to spend four years in the NCAA’s intensive-care-unit for the abhorrent actions of a few former employees, while North Carolina gets a pass for its rampant academic fraud.”
But to those sitting, waiting, wishing for UNC to get hit with something over this, it's critical to remember: there are/were four investigations of academic wrongdoing. This was the first of the four. And UNC, not the NCAA, was the one bringing out the megaphone for Friday's news.
…Despite this essentially being Phase One of the internal investigation (and why isn't the NCAA bringing more of its own to Chapel Hill? Fine question.), the news is already drawing rolling eyeballs. Beacuse we have actual evidence of transcription forgeries and a rogue professor who went from an esteemed position to poofing into the air within weeks of this story initially breaking. The overwhelming sample of football players (a few hoops players as well) taking classes leads plenty to believe rules were bent or broken to improve grades, ergo, improve eligibility.
As of now, though, UNC isn't facing so much as a smack from Indianapolis. It'll be interesting to see if anything changes going forward. It very well could. The media backlash is already in dilation as I write this. North Carolina still has three more internal investigations related to possible academic fraud ongoing. And don't forget, there is a third-party review by former governor Jim Martin to be fleshed out.
The story is still far from over.
CBSSports.com has confirmed that the NCAA has been investigating three of UCLA basketball's highly touted freshmen.
Shabazz Muhammad, Kyle Anderson and Tony Parker, a trio of Ben Howland recruits who the Bruins are hopeful will take them back to national relevance, have all been the target of the NCAA over the last few months.
The news was first reported by the UCLA site of Scout.com.
CBSSports.com wrote about Muhammad and his connections to a pair of financial advisors back in February. However, the NCAA is also concerned about the recruitments of both Anderson, a 6-foot-7 1/2 point forward from New Jersey, and Parker, a big man out of Georgia.
Muhammad wasn't allowed to play on the team's recent trip to China while both Anderson and Parker were cleared to play.
Sources told CBSSports.com that one of the issues that the NCAA is looking into the relationship between Anderson and agent Thad Foucher -- who works for Arn Tellem and the Wasserman Group. The NCAA is also investigating whether Parker's family received improper benefits throughout the recruiting process.
UCLA is on the quarter system don’t start classes until Sept. 27. Practice, for all teams, begins on Oct. 12 and that means the Bruins do have time to get their house in order with the NCAA eligibility center, more days than the majority of semester schools had which started in August. The Bruins don’t yet have to hurry to get Shabazz Muhammad's and Kyle Anderson's (those are the two players ESPNLA.com reported as still waiting to be cleared) eligibility resolved. This also means that the NCAA eligibility center and enforcement arm must take advantage of having time to settle this case. The pressure of getting a player eligible to start classes isn’t a factor with these two players but the NCAA has no excuse if this were to drag into October. They should wrap this up within the next two weeks or else they deserve criticism. The only holdup should be if someone or some people aren’t cooperating.
UCLA said two of its freshmen basketball recruits have not yet received final amateurism certification from the NCAA and is disputing what it calls "misleading and inaccurate public reports" regarding its incoming class.
…"Recently, there have been misleading and inaccurate public reports regarding the initial-eligibility certification of our men's basketball team's incoming class," school spokesman Nick Ammazzalorso said in a statement Monday.
"Currently, there are two men's basketball student-athletes who have not yet received final amateurism certification from the NCAA. UCLA will not, and cannot, endanger the privacy of our student-athletes or the confidentiality of the process by providing a more specific response at this time to these reports," he said.
A key figure in the ongoing corruption scandal at the Los Angeles County assessor's office said he gave cash and perks worth thousands of dollars to two USC athletes while they were still in school, actions that could violate college sports rules.
The allegations are contained among hundreds of Scott Schenter's county work emails that suggest the former appraiser provided football star Joe McKnight with a car and an airline ticket, and basketball player Davon Jefferson with about $3,700 in cash. The Times obtained the emails from the assessor's office under the California Public Records Act.
After The Times asked about the alleged payments, officials at USC said they immediately informed the NCAA about the claims.
"We are dedicated to playing and competing the right way," USC Athletic Director Pat Haden wrote in an email to the newspaper.
…Administrators investigated McKnight and Schenter's relationships in 2009, after the running back was seen driving a $27,000 Land Rover registered to Schenter. School officials said they "fully investigated the matter" at the time and turned their findings over to the NCAA. The disciplinary body "accepted the report, and no violation was processed," according to Haden's statement.
Among Schenter's emails is a 2009 message from an agent for Mercury Insurance saying the company believed a Chevrolet Monte Carlo listed on Schenter's policy was in McKnight's possession.
A May 2008 email from Delta Air Lines to Schenter includes a receipt for his purchase of a $625 flight from Los Angeles to New Orleans. The listed passenger: "Joe McKnight." The football player is from Louisiana.
Schenter, in a brief interview at a recent court hearing, told The Times that he gave money to Jefferson and the Monte Carlo to McKnight, who he said then wrecked the vehicle. Schenter did not return messages seeking additional information, including whether he gave McKnight the airline ticket or additional money.
Southern California guard Maurice Jones will miss the upcoming basketball season because of academic reasons but will return for his senior season in 2013-14.
Coach Kevin O'Neill said Saturday night that Jones "has been nothing short of magnificent for us for two years'' and that he wants him to graduate from USC.
Jones started 57 of 66 games during his first two seasons with the Trojans, averaging 11.4 points. Last season, he led the team with 13.0 points, and was tops in assists, steals and 3-pointers made. He scored in double figures in 23 of 32 games.
FBI agents were paying close attention to San Diego State University’s basketball team during the 2010-11 season, as most of the city was, but not because the Aztecs were in the midst of a 34-3 record and a trip to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament.
FBI agents thought SDSU games might be fixed.
An examination of hundreds of pages of federal court documents in the University of San Diego sports bribery case reveals that the Toreros weren’t the only men’s college basketball team in town agents were monitoring.
Physical and electronic surveillance, GPS tracking devices on cars, phone logs, infiltration of the team by an undercover agent, even recruitment of a player to be a confidential informant — all were discussed or enacted by the FBI during SDSU’s historic 2010-11 season.
And in the hours after the 10 defendants in the USD case were arrested in April 2011, federal agents interviewed several SDSU players. But none was indicted because federal authorities don’t think they did anything wrong.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office and FBI declined in recent weeks to comment on the record because the USD case is ongoing.
The three main defendants in that case pleaded guilty last month to bribing Brandon Johnson, the school’s all-time leading scorer, to fix games during the 2009-2010 season and then profiting from them at Las Vegas casinos. Court documents indicate the defendants wanted to expand the gambling operation the following year to include the Aztecs.
But two defense attorneys who worked the case in its early months said no SDSU games were ever illicitly altered — either because the players were never actually solicited or because they were and refused.
“I had the opportunity to review all the discovery in the case,” said Michael Berg, who represented Steve Goria, the leader of the conspiracy, before Goria switched attorneys. “There is absolutely nothing to tie any current or former player from SDSU to any point shaving or game fixing. To say otherwise is not only wrong, it’s slanderous.”
Fixing SDSU games was a “pipe dream,” said attorney Vikas Bajaj, who initially represented T.J. Brown, a former USD assistant coach. “Otherwise, there would have been arrests.”
In a surprising move that, if successful, could lead to much greater financial rewards for many college athletes, lawyers representing former college football and men's basketball players told a federal court that they now seek to change the way current athletes are compensated for the use of their images.
In filing to have their lawsuit against the NCAA certified as a class action, the attorneys argued that monies derived from television, video games and other products that use athletes' names, images and likeness should be shared with players -- and can be "temporarily held in trust for those individuals until cessation of their collegiate careers" if the NCAA feels it needs to abide its notions of amateur sports.
No monetary figures are disclosed in the public copy of the motion, filed Friday night in U.S. District Court in California. Heavy redactions of information were made by the plaintiffs. But a source close to the lawsuit -- filed in 2009 with Ed O'Bannon and other former athletes -- told ESPN that the new angle could deliver "hundreds of thousands" of dollars each year to Division I basketball players.
It’s amazing a basketball player with such an awkward-looking jump shot could have the nickname “Silk.”
Or is it? Considering how often Jamaal Wilkes put the ball in the basket and how smooth a player he was on the college and professional levels, maybe it’s accurate.
“Hall of Famer” certainly is.
The California native who played high school, college and professional ball for teams in his home state will now have a home on the East Coast when he is enshrined in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame with the Class of 2012.
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2012-13 Early Season Events List
Anthony “Cat” Barber told Rivals.com he had a great time on his weekend recruiting trip to Kansas University.
In fact, Barber, a 6-foot-2 senior guard from Hampton (Va.) High, rated his visit as a 10 on a scale of 1-10.
Barber, who is ranked No. 9 nationally by Rivals.com, did not orally commit to KU after his visit. He will visit Louisville next weekend and Alabama on Sept. 15. A visit to North Carolina State is also possible.
Aaron Gordon, an athletic 6-foot-7 wing who was California’s player of the year as a junior, has set an in-home visit with Arizona for Sept. 10.
Gordon likely won’t decide until spring, after the college basketball season.
“He kind of wants to get a better feel for most of the coaches and see how they do this season,” Gordon’s high school coach Ted Kennedy said. “As he gets to know them, he wants to see how they play on the court.”
Gordon is also considering Kansas, Kentucky, Washington, Oregon and Cal.
Karviar Shepherd, a 6-foot-10, 225-pound senior basketball center from Prime Prep Academy in Dallas, has cut his list of prospective colleges to five, Rivals.com reports.
The finalists: Kansas University, Texas, Texas A&M, Texas Christian and Oklahoma.
Shepherd, who is ranked No. 43 nationally by Rivals.com, said he would be visiting all five schools in coming weeks.
Point guard Chris Jones, who is a recruiting target of the University of Louisville and perhaps the nation’s best junior-college basketball prospect, will begin making official campus visits this weekend, starting with a trip to Baylor.
Visits to Oklahoma State (Sept. 7), Louisville (Sept. 14), Florida State (Sept. 21) and Kansas (Oct. 12) will follow with a fall decision most likely.
Jones, a 5-foot-10 native of Memphis who signed with Tennessee out of high school, now attends Northwest Florida State College, where he averaged 18 points, 4.6 rebounds and 4.2 assists per game and helped the team to a National Junior College Athletic Association runner-up finish last season as a freshman.
…Forbes said in an Aug. 25 interview that Louisville and Kansas coaches were expected to visit Jones in Florida on Sept. 9, the first day of the fall contact period, but Forbes said he wouldn’t be surprised if more of the schools recruiting him came as well.
Forbes, a former Tennessee assistant under Bruce Pearl who helped recruit Jones to the Volunteers, spoke with The Courier-Journal last week about Jones’ recruitment and his interest in the Cardinals.
…The Courier-Journal: If someone has never seen Chris, is there anybody he reminds you of or stands out when you watch him?
Steve Forbes: He’s a smaller point guard who can really score – like a Jonny Flynn, maybe. Somebody like that. But he can really distribute the ball, and the most shots he ever took for me last year was 15, but he averaged 18 points a game. We had five guys average double figures (in points), and we were 32-2. I just think he’s a really, really good player. He’s by far one of the most competitive kids I’ve coached in 24 years of coaching. He’s one of the most competitive kids I’ve coached and one of the best point guards I’ve probably ever coached.
Randle has so far finalized one official visit, to Florida on the weekend of Oct. 5, Kyles said, but it’s in the works that he’ll officially visit Lexington on Sept. 14. A trip that weekend would likely include seeing a Sept. 15 charity game featuring many of UK’s alumni who now play in the NBA.
Randle played under Florida coach Billy Donovan on the United States’ gold-medal-winning team in the Under-18 FIBA Americas tournament in Brazil.
The destinations and dates of Randle’s other three official visits are still to be determined and could include some trips to basketball games during the season, Kyles said. Randle won’t commit to a college until the spring, his mom said.
Kyles said her son has no favorite school and is giving a fair shot to all 10 on his final list.
“When he brought out the list (of 10 this month) that’s really the first time we’ve talked seriously about the list,” she said. “He had always just said, ‘Mom, let’s enjoy the summer, and when it’s time to break it down and get serious, that’s when we’ll do it.’ He’s never said a favorite. … Over the summer, he was coached by Coach Donovan with the USA team, so Coach Donovan kind of got a whole month where the other nine didn’t get anything. But he’s never said anything about a favorite. So it’s going to be interesting to me who the final five are.”
As for Kentucky, Kyles said she communicates “all the time” with UK assistant Orlando Antigua, through text messaging or email and that Calipari calls her occasionally.
“They’re great,” she said. “I communicate with (Calipari) well. It’s just been basically the same thing, how badly they want Julius and their plans for him if he decides to commit to Kentucky. It’s a good school. Coach Cal is a great coach.”
Asked specifically what UK’s coaches have expressed to their family about why they think it’s the best spot for him, Kyles said, “They play the type of game Julius likes, the running game. And pretty much, if you have the talent, letting them play.”
Hearing UNLV picking up a lot of steam in the Jermaine Lawrence sweepstakes. Rebels have made Sin City a destination for top tier talent.
Several media outlets are reporting that one of the country's top basketball recruits, Jabari Parker, was in Provo leading up to BYU's season-opening football game against Washington State.
Sources confirmed to the Daily Herald that the visit was an unofficial one, meaning Parker — who is Mormon — paid his own way from his Chicago-area home.
It remains to be seen what five schools the highly sought-after 6-foot-8 forward will allow to show him around in person. Parker visited the area in the spring, too.
Right now he still lists 10 schools: BYU, Duke, DePaul, Kansas, Florida, Georgetown, Michigan State, Kentucky, North Carolina and Stanford. He has insisted that his list revealed on Twitter was in no particular order. He is still a senior this winter.
He spent time with BYU coach Dave Rose, who also attended the Thursday night football game and participated in a brief ceremony on the field honoring a prominent athletic-department supporter.
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