WRITER: Chad Lawhorn

A month after KU coach caught on wiretapped phone call discussing recruit and money, chancellor has not talked to coach

On Oct. 16 federal court proceedings revealed a University of Kansas basketball coach discussed on a wiretapped phone conversation a high-profile recruit and potential cash payments that could get him to come to KU. A month later, KU Chancellor Douglas Girod still hasn’t talked to assistant basketball coach Kurtis Townsend about the matter or received an explanation from him. “We are waiting for direction ...

New figures show Douglas County residents earned more in 2017, but may still be jealous of our neighbors

If you are a Douglas County resident, chances are you had more money in your pocket last year, even more so than most other Kansas residents. That’s the good news. The bad news is you are still in Kansas, which continues to lag behind other states when it comes to personal income growth. Federal officials on Thursday released numbers for every county in the country showing personal income levels, which is ...

KDOT to permanently close K-10 intersection at Kasold

Story updated at 4:29 p.m. Thursday After 28 accidents in about two years, state transportation officials are eliminating a west Lawrence intersection on the South Lawrence Trafficway. The Kansas Department of Transportation will close the intersection of Kansas Highway 10 and Kasold Drive, also known as East 1200 Road, beginning Monday, Dec. 3. After that date, motorists no longer will be allowed to use ...

Dreams of a Lawrence boardwalk on the Kansas River re-emerge in new development plans

There are new plans for multistory buildings with nearly 400 apartments and condos to overlook the Kansas River, and the iconic North Lawrence bar Johnny’s Tavern would get a bit of a facelift too. Indeed, dreams of Lawrence’s own riverfront development are back in vogue. A group that owns the property including and around Johnny’s Tavern at North Second and Locust streets has filed new plans at City ...

Change may be coming for local veterans health care; Topeka medical practice expands in Lawrence

I have heard from some of you veterans recently, and it hasn’t been to just mock my winless streak in bingo at the American Legion. Instead, several of you have had questions about whether the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs is planning a pullback in medical services in Lawrence. The short answer is no, but changes are coming for the primary care outpatient clinic that the VA operates at 2200 Harvard ...

An old-school record store finds a new home in North Lawrence

When I recently told my kids I had an old J.C. Penney turntable in the storm shelter, I thought I would have to explain what a turntable was. Actually, no need. (They are still confused, though, about a J.C. Penney.) Instead, they made me drag out the turntable. That tells you a bit about why a pair of entrepreneurs have opened a vinyl record store in North Lawrence. Orange Cat Records has opened in the last ...

Report finds Lawrence ranks last in America in having enough jobs for college graduates

I have a friend who once was in a blue-collar management job. Just to keep his employees on their toes, he used to remind them that “you don’t need to have a college degree to do this job, but there are plenty of people with one that will.” It appears that nowhere in America is that statement more true than in Lawrence. A new report shows Lawrence ranks last among all metro areas when it comes to having ...

Board of Regents member wants KU explanation on issues related to college basketball corruption case

A top official with the Kansas Board of Regents said he expects to receive an explanation about what a KU basketball coach meant when he was recorded on a phone call discussing a recruit and money. Shane Bangerter, vice chair of the Board of Regents, said he’s been in communication with University of Kansas Chancellor Douglas Girod about KU issues related to the recent federal trial involving corruption in ...

News and notes, including a fast food remodel and what is being built next to Zaxby's

Some news and notes from around town: • Election season is done, but somehow we didn’t get this national controversy resolved: round or square hamburgers? If you are a square hamburger fan — hold onto your hammer and sickle — the west Lawrence Wendy’s has closed for major remodeling. Work began in recent days on the small Wendy’s in the shopping center that is at the southwest corner of Sixth and ...

KU's basic housing and dining rates will stay flat for next school year, but will still be highest among Regents universities

Emporia — The University of Kansas will continue to have the highest housing and dining costs of any Regents university in the state, but KU leaders said they will forgo raising the standard rates for the next school year. University leaders on Wednesday told the Kansas Board of Regents that the housing and dining rate for KU’s basic on-campus living package would remain unchanged for the 2019-2020 school ...

Lawrence manufacturer seeks tax break as part of $5M expansion; city set to approve other economic incentives

Needing more space for beer glasses and T-shirts is usually considered a problem at my house, but it is a sign of booming business for one Lawrence manufacturer. Grandstand Glassware & Apparel has plans for an approximately $5 million expansion at its East Hills Business Park location. As part of the deal, the company is seeking a property tax break from the city, and commissioners will begin the process ...

Another longtime downtown retailer to close; Compton buys Mass. Street building

Sure, Amazon and the host of other online retailers are fierce competitors, but when Cinda Garrison decided to close her longtime downtown business, Prairie Patches, there were a pair of adversaries that were even tougher to defeat — her knees. Garrison recently confirmed the speculation that I had heard: Prairie Patches at 821 Massachusetts St. will close early next year, ending about 45 years in business ...

From bingo to kiddos: Longtime Eagles Lodge building to become pediatric center

I always assumed that if a medical office were ever to locate in the old Eagles Lodge building, it would be a heart specialist. That building’s bingo games were notorious for breaking hearts. (If you are scoring at home, I still have yet to ever win a bingo game in my life.) But instead, I have news about the building being converted into a major pediatric center. Panda Pediatrics has signed a deal to take ...

Wiretapped phone call of KU coach may become part of NCAA inquiry; AD confirms NCAA hasn't started on De Sousa review

University of Kansas Athletic Director Jeff Long said Thursday that a wiretapped phone conversation where a KU coach and an Adidas representative discussed the possibility of paying a recruit may be part of a future “inquiry” with the NCAA. But Long left unclear whether he has done anything to already ascertain what the intentions were of KU assistant basketball coach Kurtis Townsend when he was caught on ...

KU now refuses to share info with public on $1.5M in Adidas payments; last week it said lack of personnel was reason for delay

KU accepted $1.5 million in extra payments from the shoe company at the center of a college basketball corruption case, but now KU is refusing to release documents detailing the conditions attached to the money. An attorney for Kansas Athletics Inc. on Monday evening denied the Journal-World’s open records request seeking documents related to $1.5 million in extra royalty payments the department received ...

Regional chain plans to open 2 breakfast restaurants in Lawrence, one of them downtown

It has been hard to be an egghead in Lawrence lately. In the age-old question of what came first, the chicken or the egg, the answer in Lawrence seemed to be the fried chicken. But now, fans of the egg can take heart. The regional chain Jimmy’s Egg has confirmed it is opening not one but two Lawrence breakfast restaurants. I reported in July about speculation that Jimmy’s Egg had reached a deal to locate ...

How deeply will NCAA dig into KU's recruiting? That question and others still loom after trial

The trial is over but the questions aren’t for the University of Kansas and its involvement in a college basketball recruiting scandal that may well send some former KU partners to prison. Former Adidas employee James Gatto, former Adidas consultant Merl Code and aspiring NBA agent Christian Dawkins all were convicted of various fraud charges by a federal jury in New York on Wednesday. Various media outlets ...

New ownership for one of Lawrence's longtime Italian restaurants

Justin Wilk has eaten more pasta in the last month than at any other time in his life. For some of us that would be saying a lot since my motto once was “I put the uh-oh in Spaghetti O's.” But don’t worry, Wilk is not eating that low-brow fare. Instead, he’s become the owner of one of Lawrence’s longtime Italian restaurants. Wilk last month took over ownership of the The Basil Leaf Cafe at 616 W. ...

KU cites lack of personnel for delay in providing records related to unexplained $1.5M in Adidas payments

Update - In statement following verdicts, KU says it is evaluating options on Adidas contract As former Adidas executives face a federal jury, KU continues to delay the release of documents that could shed light on the university’s financial relationship with the now controversial apparel company. The Journal-World reported on Oct. 12 that the board of directors of Kansas Athletics Inc. had been told ...

KU says it's evaluating options on Adidas contract, doesn't answer whether it will conduct independent investigation of recruiting practices

Story updated 6:02 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 24, 2018: The University of Kansas is continuing to evaluate whether it wants to be in partnership with Adidas after two of the company’s former employees were convicted Wednesday on fraud charges related to a pay-for-play college basketball recruiting scheme. In a statement from Chancellor Douglas Girod and Athletic Director Jeff Long, KU said it did not have a ...