Archive for Tuesday, April 25, 2006

KU Athletics linked to party where fight began

April 25, 2006


An official from the Kansas University Athletics Department helped organize a late-night party where a brawl sent six people to jail and another four to the hospital with injuries.

The brawl at Abe & Jake's Landing, a downtown nightclub, took place during an event billed as a Kansas Relays afterparty, where KU Athletics event coordinator Tony Daniels and local promoter Rick Jones had invited prominent athletes and local musician DJ Scottie Mac.

According to the contract for the event, Daniels and Jones agreed to pay the nightclub $3,900 for use of the venue for the evening and for security. The contract was signed under the name "KU Relays."

The KU Athletics Department organizes, sponsors and hosts the Kansas Relays.

Daniels denied he coordinated the event, saying only that he helped with the communication between Abe & Jake's Landing and Jones.

"I know that the event was called the Kansas Relays Afterparty," Daniels said. "But I was simply helping Mr. Jones."

Daniels said he had helped organize the event in past years but that Jones took the lead this year, including paying for the event and security.

The club's records did not show a name with the receipt, only a check number.

KU track and field director Tim Weaver would not comment when contacted Monday, except to say he didn't know much about the situation.

Weaver told the Journal-World on Sunday that the event was not affiliated with KU.

He also said he had not previously heard about the fight. However, several witnesses said Weaver was at the party.

Several KU athletes were there, too, including Kansas football defensive back Rodney Fowler, who suffered lacerations during the fight, according to a police report.

Anthony Collins, also a football player at KU, was listed as a witness on the report.

Monday afternoon, Abe & Jake's owner Mike Elwell sat in his office upstairs at the club, watching footage of the fight that the bar's cameras captured.

The scene was chaotic, with the video showing a massive brawl breaking out just before 1 a.m. on the club's dance floor.

Lawrence Police spokeswoman Kim Murphree said that at least 10 fights broke out at once, eventually spilling more than 200 people into the parking lot at Sixth and New Hampshire streets.

Six people were arrested and charged with various crimes, including disorderly conduct, aggravated battery and obstructing the legal process.

Three of the men arrested, including Kansas City Kansas Community College sprinter Travis Bowman, were from Kansas City, Kan. Two others were from Lawrence and another from Olathe.

The cause of the fights was still under investigation, Murphree said.

Elwell spent part of the day Sunday hearing accounts of the fight from his employees - he had 14 people working security, plus other bar staff and employees.

But still, Elwell said, the security couldn't stop all of the brawls.

Elwell said several of his employees who witnessed the brawl told him KU football players instigated it.

"All I've heard is KU football," Elwell said. "When you get this many people involved and they're that big, it makes it hard to solve the problem."

No football players were arrested. Police said they were still investigating the incident.

KU athletics spokesman Jim Marchiony did not return calls seeking comment.

Elwell, who didn't witness the fight, said Kansas Relays had booked the night for three years running and that there had never been a problem before.

KU's Daniels said it was important to have a social aspect to events such as the relays. Other big events held at universities include afterparties, and without one the relays may not be such a draw for athletes.

The trick, Daniels said, is to balance security with entertainment, so parties don't get out of hand.

"We can look at other big programs to figure out how they do it," he said.


geekin_topekan 11 years, 5 months ago

Hey,when does the public get to see the tapes? Just out of morbid curiosity. Or is that bad Kharma?

pundit 11 years, 5 months ago

So was Mr. Jones charging for entry to his event? or was he being reimbursed by KU Athletics for holding this party? If being reimbursed, isn't it then a KU party?

So if it was a party paid for by KU Athletics, isn't this the same dept with some NCAA issues? Do NCAA rules allow for such parties?

The pundit is curious.

quigley 11 years, 5 months ago

Well this article says it all. Men and women alike will be perfectly safe at Abe and Jakes, as long as people that are causing trouble and fighting are small enough to handle. In all of this crap, couldnt Elwell just say the truth? Security is a problem every weekend there. "Big" people are there all the time, get Bigger people working for you. I dont want to rant, but I used to like Abe and Jakes, its a fun place, and very unique. Its just not a good place to be recently.

neopolss 11 years, 5 months ago

Topeka is awaiting its apology from Abe & Jakes...

Sigmund 11 years, 5 months ago

"Monday afternoon, Abe & Jake's owner Mike Elwell sat in his office upstairs at the club, watching footage of the fight that the bar's cameras captured."

Are we to believe that a potentially critical piece of evidence, video tapes of the incident, are still in the hands of a private party and have not been taken as evidence by the LPD? ROFLMAO! I guess it's good to be a former judge or have close ties to KU. The only charges are against someone from KC? If this were a basketball game I'd have to say the ref's were biased and there was a home court advantage.

local_support 11 years, 5 months ago

No big surprise here folks. The only KU students that go to Abe & Jake's are the ones that are looking for some sort of drama. The KU Athletic Dept. was obviously involved in the planning of this event (no matter what they say) and the fact that they were so short-sighted as to not see this one coming is not surprising.

AlexFenton 11 years, 5 months ago

Liquor and steroids is a volatile mix. Anything can set off violence. All it would have taken is for one of the attendees to even think about Topeka. One decrepit spark, and BOOM!

OldEnuf2BYurDad 11 years, 5 months ago

Daniels said "I was simply helping". WHY were you 'helping' Mr. Daniels?! If it "wasn't" connected to the department, then why was Daniels involved at all? And, why was the "KU Relays" name used? Mr. Daniels is lying. He was involved, and so was the department. Was he "authorized" to do so by the department? It will be interesting to see if Lew Perkins answers that question.

Good news John Randle: it looks like you will soon be back on the team! It seems that KU athletics has decided to lower their standards in order to meet your lifestyle choices (instead of the other way around).

This season ticket holder will be upset if someone doesn't lose a job over this!! I bet Mangino is having a cow over this, as he should be.

mefirst 11 years, 5 months ago

In compete agreement with FrankZappa!

geekin_topekan 11 years, 5 months ago

Topekans not linked to bar fight

Lawrence owner once said capital city visitors root of troubles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T By Ric Anderson The Capital-Journal Six people -- none of them Topekans -- were arrested Sunday after a melee at a Lawrence nightspot whose owner recently blamed Topekans for causing most of the violence in Lawrence's bar scene.

++++++++ In todays CapitalJournal in case anyone's interested.

OldEnuf2BYurDad 11 years, 5 months ago

The more I think about this, the more angry I get. How could ANYONE working in KU athletics NOT understand how badly our school is effected when we have alcohol-related controversies? Do you think Duke understands this? KU athletics cannot have it both ways. You cannot punish student athletes for bad behavior while presenting those same athletes with opportunity to get into trouble with those bad behaviors.

KU athletics can only live ONE culture. You can't have the booze parties while expecting your students to stay clean and sober. A monkey has the capacity to comprehend such a simple concept.

OldEnuf2BYurDad 11 years, 5 months ago


Even the Royals can get an occasional hit from a Yankees pitcher. Even a blind squirrel finds a nut from time to time. Just because THIS bar brawl wasn't caused by Topekans doesn't mean we shouldn't go forward with our vigilante county line border patrol project. My anti-Topeka campaign has not been deterred by this incident.

Just because Franz Blix hasn't found any Topekans with guns at Abe & Jakes doesn't mean they aren't there. Use common sense, man.

Fatty_McButterpants 11 years, 5 months ago

Where was John Randle during all of this. He seems to be involved in every fight that includes members - or in his case, former members - of the KU Football team.

mom_of_three 11 years, 5 months ago

The party was an after party for the KU relays, but is not an official Relays sponsored event. Mr. Daniels may have helped coordinate the event in the past, but did not do so this year. Mr. Jones is a promoter.
I don't believe the article was very well written, (the title vs what Mr. Daniels and Mr. Weaver said), but I don't think KU athletics was involved, except for some of it's athletes.

geekin_topekan 11 years, 5 months ago

As I said..."if anyone is interested." I,personally,am not. As a displaced Lawrenite living in Topeka I am amused by Topeka's reaction to these accusations.Mostly because....Topeka sucks...SSSHHHHH!!!!!I didn't say that. But fear not...I will be home soon.

drd343 11 years, 5 months ago

I am tired of KU pumping up its athletes' egos and then letting them cause chaos around town without consequence. Weather it is KU basketball players fighting and getting stabbed, or KU football players starting brawls and injuring others they should all be publicly kicked the F' out of town. Anyone who has worked at a bar in Lawrence will tell you that KU athletes are always jackasses in public. They are arrogant and do whatever they want because they know KU will defend them or cover everything up. The players that are involved in these incidents and the sporting program officials that cover up the player's involvement should all be used as examples that residents of this city are tired of it. These fights are tarnishing the reputation of our town and diminishing respect for the University. However, this is just a waste of space because we all know that a win will always be more important than raising respectful young adults within the KU athletic program. "Go Jackoffs," I mean Jayhawks.

jafs 11 years, 5 months ago

Of the six people who were arrested, three were from Kansas City, two from Lawrence, and one from Olathe.

jafs 11 years, 5 months ago

If KU is indeed in the habit of covering up its' athletes bad behavior, that should change. But we should realize that this sort of activity is rampant in pro sports as well, and that it is the massive amounts of money involved that cause and perpetuate it. Perhaps if people were less willing to spend so much money on sports events, we could curb this sort of thing.

mom_of_three 11 years, 5 months ago

drd - um, the ku basketball player involved in the knife fight last year did move out of town.

you would have to look at all the bar fights in town and compare the ratio of athletes vs non-athletes involved before jumping to conclusions. There may be a John Doe involved in lots of fights, but you aren't going to necessarily hear about it because he isn't an athlete.

Now, there will be a Jon Randall in a crowd who seems to love the social scene and finds trouble everywhere he goes. There are guys like that no matter where you live. He just happens to play football.
It would be nice if the athletes could stay out of trouble, but they like the social life the same as any other college student.

OldEnuf2BYurDad 11 years, 5 months ago


I'm having difficulty resolving your statements against the quote:

"According to the contract for the event, Daniels and Jones agreed to pay the nightclub $3,900 for use of the venue for the evening and for security. The contract was signed under the name "KU Relays.""

How do you explain that paragraph? "Daniels... agreed to pay the nightclub" says that it was Daniels who was involved. How could a contract be countersigned with "KU Relays" unless it invovled the relays and KU athletics? Do you have inside information, or is your real name Polly Anna?

OldEnuf2BYurDad 11 years, 5 months ago


What you need to understand about that culture is that for many athletes "ego" is a big reason why they stay in athletics. If KU didn't appeal that that part of their character(s), many of them wouldn't consider the commitment required by Div. I athletics. Think about it. Only a few of these boys are ever going to play pro ball, and many of them will not graduate with a degree. So why are they here? Egos. If KU failed to appeal to that part of their mindset, they wouldn't be here at all, and KU doesn't go to any bowl games, etc.

[Keep in mind, I'm not saying that all student athletes are this way.]

Kontum1972 11 years, 5 months ago

hmm.....want to FIGHT?

go to the military recruiting office's Army or Marine...& sign up...they will guarantee you bar brawlers all the fighting you can handle.....

Instead of beating up AMERICANS....go take out some real bad guys...who HATE AMERICANS!

wonderhorse 11 years, 5 months ago

I used to be a bouncer in a bar here in Lawrence. I was called the "World's Smallest Bouncer", but I succeeded because I was backed up by KU athletes, who enjoyed being where they were, and didn't want trouble.

bangaranggerg 11 years, 5 months ago

People have some funny ideas about KU student athletes, they aren't dirtbags who don't deserve a second chance, they are kids who work incredibly hard to entertain our community and sometimes slip up. What's the hoopla about KU covering everything up, it's so high profile, the most that happens is a spin dusting not a sweep under the rug.

Linda Endicott 11 years, 5 months ago

Oh, please, pull yourself into reality, bang...

I like watching KU basketball as much as the next person, but few college athletes anymore go into any sport simply for the love of the game, or to "entertain our community".

They're in it because they think they have potential to get into the big leagues and play pro. A lot of kids think they'll go pro, even though there aren't enough spots in pro sports for all of the college athletes that dream big.

If this wasn't the case, we wouldn't be hearing so many news stories every year about "will he go pro, or return to school next year?"

A spin dusting? A sweep under the rug? A slip up? What do you think would happen to you if you went into a bar, got tanked up, and started a brawl where people were injured?

Do you think the cops would just forget about it?

wonderhorse 11 years, 5 months ago


Nope. More years ago than that. Think Harry Sidney and Franklin King.

Linda Endicott 11 years, 5 months ago

Hey! Maybe they can all get a "get out of jail free" card if they show their official Jayhawk logo now...

midwestmusicman 11 years, 5 months ago

Tim W. you need to quit lying, you were at the party.....

Mr Daniels you hired DJ Scottie Mac to do the party, you might have not been the heading up the party but you knew what was going on.....You need to tell the truth also....

mom_of_three For your info - The DJ and his friends were passing out fliers at the KU Realays with passes given to then by Mr Daniels...... It said the official KU RELAYS AFTER PARTY!!!! You got your facts wrong......

All Topeka's laughing at you A&J's

ronin 11 years, 5 months ago

let me guess wonderhorse, how about bullwinkles, or maybe the sanctuary?

topekan7 11 years, 5 months ago

Like I said before, it was a pleasant, quiet evening in Topeka.

cork 11 years, 5 months ago

Guess what. None of the people arrested were even in any of the fights. Way to go Lawrence cops.

OldEnuf2BYurDad 11 years, 5 months ago

Since when do collegiate sporting events need after parties? Is that commonplace these days?

Jen Catloth 11 years, 5 months ago


abe and jakes also handed out flyers saying OFFICIAL MARDI GRAS PARTY of LAWRENCE a few months back. Does that mean they got permission from New Orleans to have that title. NO i don't think so.

Oh this week i am having the OFFICIAL STANLEY CUP PLAYOFFS party at my house, do you think i got permission from the NHL for that or am i just saying it so people will come?

wonderhorse 11 years, 5 months ago


Close, but no cigar, although my little baby sister worked at the sanctuary as a bartender. I spent some time there with Ace. I did do some door work at bullwinkle's after it became the billy spears country playhouse. We had the same owner, and it wasn't billy.

midwestmusicman 11 years, 5 months ago


Yes they did have permission from KU Athletics..... Ask Mr. Daniels.... Did you see the flyer because I did..... And good luck on your Stanley Cup Party....... Do you want me to call John Randell & JR Giddins to go kick it with

Alison Roberts 11 years, 5 months ago

the only ku students who go to abe and jakes are hoochies, players and underagers... sorry to say. I went one this past year for a bachelorette party and saw a lot of nasty, skanky, shady lookin' individuals. It was bound to happen, the mix of people there is volatile.

dizzy_from_your_spin 11 years, 5 months ago

The cover-up always proves more interesting than the crime.

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