Archive for Friday, February 6, 2004

Ervin’s future with Jayhawks up in air

February 6, 2004


A day after missing Kansas University's women's basketball trip Wednesday to Lubbock, Texas, because of a "personal issue," freshman forward Lauren Ervin did not practice with the Jayhawks Thursday evening.

KU interim head coach Lynette Woodard said that Ervin -- who only told the Kansas coaching staff shortly before the team departed for Lubbock that she would not be making the trip -- had not yet spoken with any coaches by the conclusion of Thursday's practice.

"Lauren is out for personal reasons," Woodard said, "and I'll be talking to her (tonight) and really find out."

Without Ervin, who was not available for comment, the Jayhawks (9-10 overall, 2-6 Big 12 Conference) were pasted, 67-44, by Texas Tech.

The 6-foot-3 Ervin, who hails from Inglewood, Calif., came to KU as one of the most decorated newcomers in the program's history. She was a McDonald's All-American, AAU All-American, WBCA All-American, Nike All-American and second-team Parade All-American.

"Lauren can be as good as she decides to be," KU coach Marian Washington said during the team's media day in October.

But for Ervin -- who was listed as the No. 2 prospect by one recruiting service during her senior season at Inglewood High, where she averaged 24 points and 18 rebounds a game -- her freshman campaign at KU hasn't exactly been as prosperous as her phenomenal prep career.

Ervin, who only has started one game this season, is averaging 7.7 points and a team-best 6.9 rebounds per contest. However, she is sixth on the squad in minutes played with 21 a contest.

Despite Ervin's awesome accolades, her playing career has had a few bumps.

Ervin was at the heart of a postgame fight that broke out Jan. 10 in Columbia, Mo., after KU's 55-52 win over the Tigers. While Ervin did not get suspended as did three of her teammates, she was reprimanded by the Big 12 for taunting the Tigers.

Ervin also was kicked off last year's U.S. Olympics development team for punching an opponent.

Whether Ervin will make this weekend's trip to Lincoln, Neb., wasn't known, Woodard said.

But Ervin, who chose Kansas over other prominent schools such as Tennessee, Arizona and Texas, said earlier this season that Washington made picking KU an easy decision.

"I felt this special bond with coach Washington," Ervin said at the time. "I knew she'd take care of me."

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