Kansas University's first few basketball practices of the 2004-05 season have been basic and will remain basic for a while.
"We're working on fundamentals, breakdown drills. We've got to spend a ton of time on defense and rebounding," second-year coach Bill Self said.
His squad, which returns four well-schooled starters and adds five scholarship freshmen, benefited from 10 pre-Canada-tour practices in August.
"With those 10 days, we were able to put in a lot of the meat and potatoes -- not detailed, not intricate situations," Self said. "They gave us a head start so we're ready to start practice now. ... The Canadian trip will not help us be a better team in January, but it can help us be a lot better team by Thanksgiving. We feel we have tough games early."
The Jayhawks, who open with an exhibition game against Emporia State on Nov. 7, play the likes of St. Joe's, Nevada, Pacific, TCU, South Carolina, UW-Milwaukee and Georgia Tech leading up to the New Year. The Tech game, in fact, is on New Year's Day.
Tryouts coming: The Jayhawks will hold walk-on tryouts at 7 p.m. Monday at Allen Fieldhouse. Any KU student interested in participating should show up at 6:30 p.m. with proof of health insurance and proof of a physical exam taken within the past year. Students can take physical exams at Watkins on campus.
Any questions should be directed to the men's basketball office at 864-3056.
Miles' decision looming: C.J. Miles, a 6-foot-5 senior guard from Dallas Skyline High, will hold a 3 p.m. news conference today to announce his college choice.
Miles eliminated Georgia Tech on Monday and will choose between Texas and KU. Various recruiting analysts believe Texas is the heavy favorite.
Miles' dad, Calvin, told the Austin American Statesman last week UT has immediate playing time available at shooting guard.
"C.J. would like to start as a freshman," Calvin Miles said.
Pocius to visit Duke: Martynas Pocius, a 6-5 senior guard from The Holderness School in Plymouth, N.H., who attended Late Night in the Phog, still is planning on visiting Duke this weekend then making a decision next week.
Aldrich's visit successful: Cole Aldrich, a 6-10, 235 sophomore from Bloomington, Minn., said he'll "never forget" his experience at Late Night.
"The fans were awesome, and some of the skits were pretty cool. It was just a wonderful experience, and something I will never forget," he told Shay Wildeboor of rivals.com.
Schools to be a factor in his recruiting include Arizona, Duke, Kentucky, Marquette, Minnesota, North Carolina, Wisconsin and Michigan State.
Women recruits at Late Night: KU's women's program had three recruits in town for Late Night, including a player who already has committed -- Jen Orgas, a 6-2 post player from Skutt High in Omaha, Neb. Also on hand were Ivana Catic, a point guard from Serbia and Montenegro, and Tanae Cain-Davis, a shooting guard from Dawson, Ga.