Posts tagged with Ku
A Joyous Occasion: Video of the KU volleyball team’s celebration after learning NCAA Tournament fate
The Kansas University volleyball team learned Sunday night that it would be hosting first- and second-round NCAA Tournament games games at Allen Fieldhouse for the second year in a row next weekend.
Here's a quick video of the reaction when the Jayhawks found out.
Bill Self live from Allen Fieldhouse previewing the Battle 4 Atlantis tournament:
• Self on the small setting of the court in the Bahamas: I got a picture of the court today and it looked pretty cool. Says it's in a large ball room and seats 3-4 thousand.
• Self on Frank Mason: He's a PG size and you can list him as a PG but he's never played point. He's a sponge, though, and he's so unselfish. He cares nothing about scoring, but we do want him in attack mode. He's done a nice job so far and was really good vs. Duke.
• Self on the Atlantis field: The field's good. Wake Forest is 5-0, USC & Villanova have talent and could be tournament teams. Tennessee's definitely a tourney team, Iowa's definitely a tourney team and Xavier should be as well. Said he saw where it was ranked as first or second in terms of collection of talent of all the preseason tourneys.
• Self said the Wake team under Jeff Bzdelik does not resemble the Colorado teams he coached. At least not through first five games. Wake Forest more conventional than those CU teams. Wake can score inside and out.
• Self: We haven't taken that many guarded looks, which has been a good thing. Mason, Tharpe Embiid and Selden are four best passers on team right now.
• Three-point shooting needs to improve. Self says team hasn't been very aggressive shooting them. Self: I can understand why they haven't. We've been good attacking the lane and good in transition, but I know there are going to be games where teams zone us and we're gonna have to step up and make shots.
• The way KU plays, they'll have, at most, three three-point shooters in the game. Self: Andrew White, Brannen Greene and Conner Frankamp are best three shooters, but if you play all three of those guys, you're taking minutes from someone else. Those guys could be good, especially shooting it, in spurts.
• Self said statistically the Jayhawks have been good rebounding but he doesn't see it as much in practice. Not a naturally gifted box out team. One reason could be the fact that teams are so scared of KU's transition that they don't attack the glass as hard and that makes KU look better in defensive rebounding numbers.
• Self on individual defensive grades: If you don't look strictly at stats and what the guy who they're guarding does, you look at these: Does he play to scouting report, can he use length to contest shots, can he make plays away from his own man, off the ball (Mario Chalmers), does he lock down his man and frustrate him (Travis Releford)...
• Self says he thinks Wiggins can become a guy that KU puts on other team's best scorer down the stretch when it counts.
• Self says depth can be a little bit overrated but it can help a ton this week in the Bahamas.
• Self on KU's defensive strengths: Not great at team defense yet and no lockdown guys on perimeter or in the post. Jack of all trades, master of none is the phrase he used.
• Self on the KU volleyball success and their game at Allen Fieldhouse: They've had a great year and they deserve support. Hope people turn out Tuesday night to watch them play Denver.
• Self again was asked about "Home of the Chiefs" during national anthem. Reiterates that he's not a fan because it's disrespectful to men and women of military and "We're not the Chiefs."
• Self on player free time in Bahamas: We'll give 'em some time on Wednesday and Sunday and Tuesday night when they get there, they can hang out. it's a business trip, though, and they're not concerned about anything other than winning games.
• Self on if going somewhere tropical is different: Oh yeah. Warm weather's always good when you live somewhere you don't have it. I think there's something nice about going somewhere warm, where you can hang out outside, walk around wearing shorts and all that. Doesn't think the climate has much to do with becoming a team or outcome of the games.
• Self on what he hopes defensive philosophy will become: One shot or less per possession; low FG percentage and toughness. Because teams that do well at the end when it counts usually hang their hats on those things.
Here's a quick video of a few of the Jayhawks answering some random questions at today's media day at Allen Fieldhouse:
Here's our media day photo gallery:
Complete Bill Self audio from today's media day news conference:
KU coach Bill Self, dressed in a suit and tie, is addressing the media at Allen Fieldhouse right now.
Players will speak to the media on the Fieldhouse floor at 3:55 and we'll have photos, video and stories from that later on.
For those following along below, I just tried to go as fast as I could with these notes, so everything you're reading is being said by Self. I'm not adding any of my thoughts into this, so when it says "I" that's Self talking. Hopefully that's not too confusing.
Self on the hype for this season:
From what I can tell, this is the most anticipated start of the season we've had since I've been here. Based on what people have told me, there seems to be no shortage of anticipation and ticket sales were hot. In large part, Self believes the hype is because of the unknown with the quality recruiting class.
What he knows about this team:
This team is different than all the teams we've had. We're as deep as we've ever been, we're got as many good players in the gym as we've ever had and we're very long. Can play with five or six bigs if need be. Haven't had that in the past. Self says the team could play with more intensity because of depth, especially defensively. We are talented but by no means do we know how to play or are we ready to play.
Self on Joel Embiid:
He's got the best feet. When you watch him play, you'll think you're watching a 6-footer, almost like a young Hakeem Olajuwon. Long ways to go from strength and toughness standpoint to be able to play a ton of minutes, but he can move.
Self on Andrew Wiggins
Adding Wiggins brought instant attention to the program, especially nationally and for the people who wondered if KU could land the top-tier guys. Wiggins is still a freshman, though. He has a chance to become a great player, but he's not a great player yet. He's a great prospect and hopefully he can develop and becoming a great player very quickly.
Self says Wiggins has shown flashes of dominance in high school but not consistently and as reliably. He needs to learn how to bring that vibe all the time instead of turning it on and off throughout a game. He could be our best defender, our best shot blocker, our best lane runner, he could be a lot of things. But if he doesn't do it every possession, he won't be any of those things.
He's a 10. All of our young kids have been 10s. If there is stubbornness, it's strictly from a competitive standpoint.
Self on Conner Frankamp:
He's a shooter even more than a scorer and he'll certainly have the green light for us, but he could labor more in college to get his shots off as often, which could make the adjustment a little tougher.
Self on early start to this season:
I'm a fan of it this year. If we have a bunch of guys returning, I won't be as big a fan of it. But he likes it because it allows the coaches to ease the new guys into the flow -- a couple days on a couple days off. There's no reason to have 3.5 hour practices in September. The early start allows KU to teach more early and then the guys will be in a better position to be ready for practice 1 in November.
On Frank Mason pushing Naadir Tharpe
There's no question he can push Naadir and Naadir knows that. He's tough, he's a pit bull, but does he know how to lead a team and all that stuff? He's in a battle for playing time with Naadir but he has to prove he can lead a team.
Self on Perry Ellis:
He could easily be our leading scorer this season, but he could also be our fourth leading scorer. He's been great this offseason and I think he'll be ready to take the next step. He was great last year from February on, after being a really, really good high school guy and struggling early on.
Self on this team's vocal leaders:
I'd said Naadir and Tarik Black are probably our best vocal leaders. Everybody can do it in some way on this team, but I don't think guys can be great leaders unless they're vocal and can talk.
Self on Wayne Selden:
He's probably as versatile as any guy we have. Can play 2 maybe 3 spots and even could be an emergency point guard if need be. Wayne's a guy that physically can use his strength to offset other peoples'. He's probably as strong a freshman guard as we've had here.
Self on living up to the hype and expectations:
That's not something we've really labored with in the past because we haven't had as many people saying as many good things about a bunch of guys they've never seen play. If we can focus on us begin good, it'll work. And that has to be a priority over individuals being good. That's not how it works here.
Self on pressure:
Since I've been here, I've never felt any pressure (he laughs).... I think there's always pressure at a place like this, both to win and to develop guys, but I don't think there's any extra pressure this year by any means. Is there pressure for us to be good? There is every year. But the ultimate responsibility for these guys to be good falls on the individuals. They have to want to work. And if this group wants to work I think they have a chance to be very happy at the end of the season.
Self on Tarik Black's role:
He'll have a chance to start and play a lot. Not very often you recruit a senior who comes in and is already respected enough to be the leader of the big guys. I'm expecting a big year from him.
Self on this team's ceiling:
We've had some pretty good teams. The last 7 years we've averaged 33 wins and if this team gets to 33 wins that would be unbelievable given how tough the schedule is. Right now, I don't think we're even close to being in the same conversation with some of the best teams to come through here, but if they work and develop, they could get into that conversation.
Self on the tough early season schedule:
I do like the fact that we're playing a hard schedule. Hard schedules expose some things so you can't get by with hiding things. I don't think any team in America has a schedule like we have, especially early.
Self on Perry Ellis and Andrew Wiggins' quiet nature
Perry takes quiet to a whole different level. You could be a room with Perry and it's possible that nobody would talk in 24 hours. Andrew is definitely more laid back, but he's not quite on the same quietness level as Perry. Everybody on the team needs to work on becoming better communicators.
Self joked that Perry feels comfortable around him now and says, "He'll come into my office and we'll have a 30 or 45 second conversation, which is way longer than most we had last year."
Self on red-shirt possibilities:
I wouldn't be surprised if one guy does. It won't be because we tell anyone he has to, but if it's best for them and their family, that could happen. Did not say who that might be but said after seeing how it worked out for Jeff Withey and Travis Releford, he thinks more should want to do that.
Self on Landen Lucas:
He got much more athletic during his red-shirt year and he's going to be a solid player here at KU. I could not be more pleased with where he is at this point in his career compared to where I thought he'd be.
Self on freshmen:
Wayne Selden's ready to be a player because he's physically there. Greene and Frankamp also are ready because one is athletic as all get-out and the other is probably as good a pure shooter as their is anywhere in America. This would've been a great class even without Andrew Wiggins, but that certainly was icing on the cake.
Self on Frank Mason:
Here's a guy that signed with Towson out of high school but he didn't qualify and had to go to prep school and then we're begging him to come here. He's got a lot of fire in his belly and he's excited to be here. He's without question one of the two or three most athletic guys on our team and you guys will see that.
Self on team's depth and how many he'll play:
It could be a year where we play a solid nine in every big game, which we haven't done is season's past. And it could be a different nine from time to time depending on how things play out.
Good afternoon KU fans and welcome to our coverage of this year's KU basketball media day.
Tom Keegan, Gary Bedore and I are at Allen Fieldhouse today to find out as much as we can about this year's very new and very young team.
Follow along throughout the afternoon for updates from media day, including notable quotes and audio from head coach Bill Self, notes from the players and photo galleries of all the fun.
Self is scheduled to speak to the media at 3:25 p.m. so check back any time after that for all of the day's news and notes...
Here we go with Week 2 of our Keegan vs. Tait college football picks showdown.
The younger generation jumped out to an early lead with an 8-2 record last week and there are a couple of differences in this week's picks as well, so the lead could grow or change hands.
Enough with the chit-chat, though. Here's a look at this week's games and picks.
Week 1 Results
Week 2 Games
Kansas at Rice
Tulsa at Oklahoma
Georgia State at West Virginia
Iowa at Iowa State
UMass at Kansas State
Lamar at Oklahoma State
Ole Miss at Texas
Alabama at Texas A&M
UCLA at Nebraska
Purdue at Notre Dame
Question: You're starting a pro football franchise and can draft any player in his prime in NFL history. Who do you take and why?
Kansas 35, Rice 27
Oklahoma 41, Tulsa 21
West Virginia 42, Georgia State 13
Iowa 20, Iowa State 14
Kansas State 47, UMass 10
Oklahoma State 56, Lamar 7
Texas 23, Ole Miss 19
Alabama 30, Texas A&M 20
Nebraska 33, UCLA 31
Notre Dame 35, Purdue 9
Answer: You know the whole quarterback run thing that has swept over the NFL in recent years thanks to guys like Colin Kaepernick, Robert Griffin III and Cam Newton? Yeah, John Elway did that. OK, so maybe Elway was not the smoothest man on the move and maybe he did not run the zone read, but he did run. And he did win. A lot.
The two-time Super Bowl champion, who capped his sensational Denver Broncos career by winning MVP honors at Super Bowl XXXIII before riding off into the sunset, is second all-time in career rushes by a quarterback, one tote behind former Phily QB Randall Cunningham. He also threw a ball so hard that his receivers had a name for the little indention the tip of the football made on their bodies when it hit them — The Elway Cross — and was as competitive a player as the NFL has ever seen. Remember his helicopter run and dive that set up a crucial touchdown in Super Bowl XXXII?
For a while, before Brett Favre wound up passing him, Elway owned the top spot in the one category that should be listed first on the list of most important statistics for any player — career victories. And if I'm starting a team, I'm picking a guy who knew how to win and did anything and everything within his power to make it happen.
The ultra-athletic Elway, who twice was drafted in the Major League Baseball draft — first by Kansas City in the 18th round out of high school in 1979 and then again by the New York Yankees in the second round in 1981 — led the Broncos to five Super Bowl berths, two Super Bowl victories (back-to-back, no less) and belongs in every conversation ever had about the greatest quarterback to play the game.
As for my opponent and boss, this is probably the right time to point out that he went 4-1 in the office's NFL picks contest last week and doesn't follow the NFL a lick. He could be tough to catch in the pro picks, but since he does follow college football closely, I'm not too worried about keeping my early lead here.
Rice 31, Kansas 24
Oklahoma 35, Tulsa 10
West Virginia 49, Georgia State 7
Iowa 28, Iowa State 21
Kansas State 42, UMass 7
Oklahoma State 55, Lamar 10
Texas 35, Ole Miss 21
Texas A&M 35, Alabama 31
Nebraska 35, UCLA 31
Notre Dame 35, Purdue 17
Answer: Jim Brown. Normally, I would say a quarterback, but there was nothing normal about Jim Brown, No. 32 for the Cleveland Browns. Retired Lawrence Journal-World editor and columnist Bill Mayer likes Jackie Robinson for his pick as the greatest athlete of all-time and there is a lot to like about that selection, but my vote goes to Brown.
The greatest football player of all-time, Brown also was inducted into the College Lacrosse Hall of Fame, located on the campus of Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore. He was a first-team All-American as a senior and ranked second in the nation in scoring. Many are aware of that, but the amazing thing about Brown's athletic career is how few know of his basketball prowess. Brown led the Syracuse University basketball team in scoring one season.
Brown led the NFL in rushing eight times in nine seasons, averaged more than 100 rushing yards per game and more than five yards per carry. Brown never missed a game because of injury. He was bigger, stronger, faster and had better vision than any other running back in the league. He demoralized opponents in a way no football player had before him or has after him.
I'd like to take this opportunity to congratulate you, Matt, on your strong Week 1 performance. For a guy who has to shave three times a day — your 5 o'clock shadow, I'm guessing, arrives at about 11 a.m. — you do a terrific job of keeping up on college football.
Day 2 of the Kansas University football program's fall camp has come and gone and I left practice with a couple more early observations.
In keeping with the spirit of yesterday's season-opening blog, let's take a quick look at a few more newcomers today as well as a couple of other interesting tidbits that jumped out at me during the 20 minutes we were out there.
• By far the player who jumped out at me the most today that I did catch yesterday was wide receiver Mark Thomas. Listed at 6-foot, 210 pounds, Thomas is every bit of that. The Nassau Community College graduate has thick, powerful legs and looks like he could do some damage both after the catch and in blocking. They were just doing basic drills against no defense so it's hard to tell how physical Thomas really is. But if he's even half as physical as he appears, he'll be a load for opposing defenses.
• Sticking at wide receiver, I got my first look at Nick Harwell today. He's smaller — at least shorter — than I expected but the roster says 6-1, 193 and we know KU coach Charlie Weis does not fudge on those measurements. Forget physical appearance for a minute, though. Harwell carries himself like the polished and experienced receiver he is. He ran mostly with the second group today — opposite Josh Ford — and he had great bounce, which led me to believe that he's not going to let the fact that he can't play this year keep him from getting better and helping the Jayhawks.
• Coach Weis told me on Wednesday not to make a big deal out of the fact that offensive tackle Zach Fondal (again, pronounced Fawn-Doll) would spend some time at left tackle and some time at right tackle throughout camp while the team attempts to build some depth at both positions and waits for the arrival of juco tackle Pearce Slater, who should be in camp tomorrow. So I won't. But it was worth noting that Fondal ran drills as a right tackl with the No. 1 unit today. Riley Spencer started there yesterday. Not worth making too much out of it. Maybe they're just alternating every other day. But this much is certain; if Fondal wasn't at least someone they thought could compete for that spot you can bet they'd have somebody else in there.
• It'll be interesting to see how long it lasts, but I caught another “Start from the bottom” reference in one of the songs that roared over the speakers at camp today. That's two days of practice and two musical references to KU's position as the predicted cellar-dweller in the Big 12.
• Another musical note: There must have been something wrong with the first song on today's practice playlist because it was all treble and sounded awful. The guy in charge of the music quickly caught in and skipped ahead to the next track, but not before hearing a chorus of boos from the players during stretching.
• I'm always a big fan of checking out who the team leaders are and since captains have not been announced yet the best place to check this out is warm-ups. Which guys go first in sprints or stand in the first line during stretching? The answer? A ton. Ben Heeney, Jake Heaps, Jake Love, Keon Stowers, Ben Goodman, Pat Lewandowski, Cassius Sendish, Justin McCay, Dexter Linton, Taylor Cox, Christian Matthews, Trevor Pardula and Riley Spencer held down the first line. Remember, football fields are pretty wide.
• Finally, I think it's noteworthy that guys are going all out out there so far in camp, even during the simulated offensive snaps the team runs at the beginning of the positional drills period. It would be real easy to jog out to your position or up to the line of scrimmage, but, for the most part, these guys are sprinting to their spots to get lined up. There's been a lot of talk about the defense playing faster, but it looks like that may be a focal point for the offense, too.
In case you missed my video from Day 1, check it out:
Seeing how today marked the official beginning of the 2013, I figured I better make my first “What Caught My Eye” blog of the season one that's dedicated to beginners.
We'll have plenty of time to get into some more position-specific stuff and talk about the Jayhawks you already know about, but here's a quick first-look at a few of the newcomers, guys we got to see in a KU uniform for the first time today.
Remember, media members are not allowed to attend the entire practice, just the first 20-30 minutes, so what we see is somewhat limited. But instead of just mailing it in and pretending like it's all the same, I'll spend the month looking for the little things that stand out — at least to me — and I'll try to interpret them and analyze them as best I can.
• First, it's worth pointing out that there was a ton of energy all over the field today. That's to be expected from a first practice — I don't care if it's the first day of middle school football or the first day of NFL training camp — but it's still nice to see, considering that the last time we were invited to practice during the season, we saw a team that always worked hard but lost its bounce week after week, loss after loss. The energy did not just come from the players today, though. Tons of juice from everyone including coaches, managers and anybody else associated with the program.
• As you might have guessed, my first glances went toward defensive tackle Marquel Combs. I wanted to see how he worked, how he moved and how he carried himself. I'd give him high marks in all three areas and the best part was, he looked like he was having fun the entire time. Combs has a chance to impact this team in a bigger way than just about anybody this season and it was good to see him out there in his element.
• On the offensive line, Zach Fondal (pronounced Fawn-doll, I've been told) looks like he could jump out there right now. Great size, good feet, fluid movement. There's no doubt that he has some work to do, both in getting in better shape and in learning how to play D-I football, but the framework appears to be there. Fondal opens camp as the second-string left tackle and he'll work at both left and right tackle throughout camp to give the Jayhawks better depth at both spots.
I know I said this was about beginners today, but this would be a good time to toss in my impressions of left tackle Aslam Sterling. In a word, I'd say, 'Wow.' Not only does he look to be in much, much, much better shape than the guy who started for the Jayhawks last season, he moves like a running back. The coaches have been singing the praises of his transformation for weeks now and after seeing it with my own two eyes I can plainly say that they're not making too much of it. He's a new man. And he looks like he has a chance to be a force.
• Another guy who jumped out at me was linebacker Samson Faifili, who opens camp as a back-up to Jake Love at the Will linebacker spot. Know this about Faifili: If Love holds him off, he'll have earned it and it'll make me think even more of Love than I already do. Faifili is non-stop energy who likes to bounce around the field, talk constantly and elevate the energy level whenever possible. He's easy to spot because he's got that Troy Palamalu hair sticking out of the back of his helmet. Before too long, I'm guessing you'll notice the guy (No. 51) for something other than his hair.
• Just because we can, let's throw Jake Heaps into the “new” grouping. After all, he is new as a starter on this squad. I've seen him plenty of times now, both in practice and in game-type settings, but I still walk away impressed every time. The ball just zips off his hand. We talked with him a little earlier today and he said he wasn't going to change anything about how he does things now that camp has started. The only change you might see is a louder, more energized, more excited guy in the No. 9 jersey. He's been waiting a long time for a chance to get back out there.
• Here's another one that's in that quasi-new category. Remember former defensive lineman Max Onyegbule? He's back with the program in a coaching role and, from the looks of things today, he'll help a lot. He's young enough to relate to these guys and spent most of the stretching portion of the practice bouncing in the faces of his D-Linemen. Any guesses on the guy who got the most attention from Max? Yep. Combs.
• Finally, one quirky thing I thought was funny came when the Coach Weis song of the day came on. Yes, they're still doing it with the second song of each practice and, yes, it sounds like it's still going to be Bruce Springsteen or Bon Jovi every day. Today's song was Springsteen's “Born to Run” but when it came on, even the players went nuts. I never saw that last year. Like I said, there was a lot of energy out there today and nothing showed that more than a bunch of 18-20 year-olds getting fired up about a song by the Boss. One other musical mention came four or five songs in, when a track by Drake filled the air. It's name? “Started from the Bottom.” It's hook? “Started form the bottom, now we here.” Sounds like a decent way for the KU football program to kick off the 2013 season.
More to come tomorrow. See you then.
Check back with KUsports.com throughout the afternoon for more from practice, as both Jesse Newell and I got some video from the first day.
As the beginning of fall camp draws near and preseason predictions pop up just about everywhere you look, the Kansas University football program continues to see the odds of a decent season stacked against it.
Earlier today, I received an email from the folks at www.bovada.lv with the updated odds on each school's chances of winning its respective conference this season.
Not surprisingly, KU was the biggest of the long shots in the Big 12, at 100-1. If you scroll through the rest of the conferences you'll see that they capped the longest odds at 100-1, which I suppose makes sense for the oddsmakers but seems a little off from where I sit.
Don't get me wrong here; I think KU will be a much improved team in 2013 and I'm fully expecting the Jayhawks to win a Big 12 game or two. But if I'm putting down any money on the Jayhawks to win the entire conference, I'd sure like to see my payout be greater than 100-1 if they actually pulled it off.
For the record, I'm not betting on KU or anyone else to win the Big 12 this season, but I did pick Texas on my preseason ballot.
Inside the program, KU coach Charlie Weis and his staff and players will continue to use things like this as motivation. They know that nobody outside of the walls of their football complex believes KU will be much more competitive this season in the conference than they have been in the past few.
But they also believe — even if they aren't saying it — that those people will be wrong.
As you know, KU was picked to finish 10th in the 10-team Big 12 by the media. And most of the preseason college football magazines I've scanned have the Jayhawks slotted in the cellar, as well.
But I have heard, oh-so-quietly, from a few people out there who are willing to say that KU will be the surprise team in the Big 12 this season. What that means is not exactly clear. By calling them the "surprise team" they could be saying that most people expect them to win zero games and they see them winning 3 or 4. They could also be calling them a surprise team because they believe they can finish in the top half of the league. Who knows?
The good news here is that, a week from tomorrow, we'll begin the quest to finding out, as KU's fall camp opens and the season officially gets under way.
In the meantime, here's a look at the rest of those odds in the other major conferences.
Odds to win the 2013-2014 Big 12 Conference
Oklahoma State 5/2
Kansas State 12/1
Texas Tech 25/1
West Virginia 25/1
Iowa State 40/1
Odds to win the 2013-2014 American Athletic Conference
South Florida 33/1
Odds to win the 2013-2014 Atlantic Coast Conference
Florida State 5/2
Virginia Tech 15/2
North Carolina 8/1
Georgia Tech 12/1
North Carolina State 50/1
Boston College 75/1
Wake Forest 100/1
Odds to win the 2013-2014 Big Ten Conference
Ohio State 5/6
Michigan State 15/2
Odds to win the 2013-2014 Mountain West Conference
Boise State 7/5
Fresno State 2/1
Utah State 11/2
San Diego State 13/2
San Jose State 10/1
Colorado State 33/1
Air Force 40/1
New Mexico 100/1
Odds to win the 2013-2014 Pac-12 Conference
Arizona State 9/1
Oregon State 10/1
Washington State 50/1
Odds to win the 2013-2014 Southeastern Conference
South Carolina 9/2
Texas A&M 15/2
Ole Miss 33/1
Mississippi State 75/1
Odds to win the 2013-2014 Mid American Conference
Northern Illinois 13/10
Bowling Green 7/2
Ball State 5/1
Kent State 15/2
Western Michigan 33/1
Central Michigan 40/1
Eastern Michigan 75/1
Odds to win the 2013-2014 Conference USA
East Carolina 15/4
Middle Tennessee 12/1
Louisiana Tech 15/1
North Texas 20/1
Southern Miss 20/1
Florida Atlantic 28/1
Florida International 33/1
Here's video of that Andrew Wiggins dunk that Jesse Newell was in perfect position to capture just seconds into today's game.
And Nick Krug's photo gallery of the fun.
Final Score: Red 66, Blue 61
Tyrel Reed led the Red team in its revenge victory over the young guys.
Andrew Wiggins played about 14 minutes, wowed the crowd with a couple of monster dunks and hit one of two three-pointers for a total of 7 points.
The stats weren't all that impressive, but the game's there. This guy is on a different level.
We'll have scoring totals, video, a photo gallery and much more throughout the afternoon.
4:20 p.m. Update:
Red goes back up 12 after a sweet lull-em-to-sleep and no-look pass from Collins to Aldrich for the easy dunk.
4:19 p.m. Update:
Old guys putting on a clinic right now. Reed with another three and Blue trails 62-50 with 2:00 left.
4:17 p.m. Update:
Wiggins checks back in with Red leading 57-50. 3:35 to play.
4:16 p.m. Update:
Tyrel Reed with a couple of buckets in a row and Red leads by 6. Reed now has 14 points.
4:13 p.m. Update:
Frank Mason for three pulls Blue to within one.
4:11 p.m. Update:
Wiggins to the bench. He's played 10 minutes and has 7 points. Hard to say if he'll come back in today, but I'd guess so.
Greene with another three pulls Blue to within one, but Reed answers and Red leads 46-42.
4:09 p.m. Update:
Aldrich with a couple of uncontested dunks pushes the Red lead to seven, 43-36.
4:06 p.m. Update:
Wiggins shows the range early in the second half, stroking a three-pointer from the wing with Brady Morningstar right in his face. Wiggins has 7 points now, but Blue has fallen behind Red, 36-32 with 13 minutes to play.
4:01 p.m. Update: HALFTIME, Blue 29, Red 27
A tip-in by Justin Wesley at the buzzer pulls the Red squad to within two at the break. The tip came after a sweet one-on-one battle between Sherron "Showtime" Collins and, of all people, Perry Ellis.
Ellis did a good job of staying with all of Collins' dancing, but the former KU guard still got the shot off and led to the tip-in.
Three-minute halftime and then it's back to the action.
Leading scorers for both sides:
3:59 p.m. Update:
Two-point game with a minute to play in the first half. Selden hit a deep, fade-away jumper to help the Blue squad keep its lead. Every time I see him I can't help but think how much Coach Weis would love to get him on the football team. Dude is built like a monster.
3:56 p.m. Update:
Brannen Greene, who didn't make it into the updates last week until the very end (despite leading everybody in scoring) just stroked a three to give the Blue a five-point lead again.
3:55 p.m. Update:
The shooting display is not even close to what it was last week, but Tarik Black did just step out and hit a three-pointer from the top of the key.
Blue leads Red, 19-17 with 4:40 to play first half.
Wiggins played the first five minutes and has four points.
3:51 p.m. Update:
Tyrel Reed with a three-pointer to cut the Blue lead to 15-9. 8:30 to play 1st half.
A lot of the Blue buckets have come right at the rim, with Jamari Traylor, Landen Lucas, Wayne Selden and Joel Embiid all scoring inside early. Selden and Embiid's buckets came off of alley-oop passes. One from Frank Mason and the other from Selden.
Embiid warmed up with the Red team but is not playing with them.
3:45 p.m. Update:
After a Sherron Collins turnover on the game's first possession, Perry Ellis pushed it ahead to Wiggins, who went right at Cole Aldrich and threw down a monster jam that electrified the crowd. It was as if everyone here was sleeping and then had water thrown on them at the same time.
For the record, Cole did not challenge the dunk.
Two possessions later, Wiggins got another breakaway dunk and threw it down with two hands this time.
8-2, Blue early on.
3:44 p.m. Update:
Ball's up, Red wins the tip. Here we go.
3:36 p.m. Update:
Scot Pollard is here today but is not playing. Brady Morningstar is also back this week for the Red squad.
Aaron Miles is here this week, too.
Pretty wild to see that it took the introduction of Sherron Collins to match the one that Andrew Wiggins got.
As you probably guessed, the Red squad has a few current Jayhawks playing for it today. Tarik Black, Justin Wesley, Joel Embiid, Tyler Self and Evan Manning are playing with the alums.
7 minutes to tip-off.
3:31 p.m. Update:
The first signs of Wiggins-Mania showed up in a big way in the gym today. Before the guy even came onto the floor, the campers who filled the south bleachers broke out chants of "We Want Wiggins," and "An-Drew, An-Drew, An-Drew."
It's going to be a wild year.
One quick note about today's scrimmage... Andrew White III will not play again this week. He's dealing with a minor knee injury. As was the case last week, it doesn't sound like the injury is a big deal at all.
3:27 p.m. Update:
Almost wrapped up with the game between the campers and the counselors and then we'll be on to the main event. I'm guessing it'll start somewhere around 3:40-3:45. Coach Self will introduce his current team and the players will warm up and then it'll be game time.
In the meantime, Sherron Collins is here again today, as are Jeff Hawkins and Tyrel Reed.
More alums and updates to come...
3:00 p.m. Update:
Last week, a handful of former KU players returned to Bill Self basketball camp to take on the current batch of Jayhawks, which topped the old guys, 91-76, in a game that featured an incredible display of three-point shooting from just about everybody in the gym.
Today, it's time for Round 2 and this time top overall recruit in the Class of 2013, Andrew Wiggins, is expected to make his unofficial KU debut.
It remains to be seen who else will show up for the alums today, but I have already seen Cole Aldrich in the building.
Gary Bedore's here to do his thing, Nick Krug has like 12 camera lenses with him today and Jesse Newell is here to capture some video of Wiggins, which he's hoping to get up on our site before anybody else. Cross your fingers for technology to work on that and stay tuned for updates throughout the scrimmage, which should start sometime around 3:30 or 3:45.
I'll get you a list of alums as soon as they start filtering in.
Here's a video of highlights from the scrimmage, taken by Jesse Newell:
And here are Nick Krug's photos of the action:
FINAL: Blue 91, Red 76
Thanks to a big second half, freshman forward Brannen Greene led all scorers with 21 points in the Blue's come-from-behind victory over the alums.
Tyshawn Taylor added 19 points and Sherron Collins 16 for the Red, while Perry Ellis chipped in 14, Landen Lucas and Conner Frankamp added 12 apiece and Jamari Traylor added 11 for the Blue squad.
Gary Bedore will have much more on the camp and the scrimmage in Thursday's Journal-World.
4:27 p.m. Update:
The shooting clinic continues as players in both colors of jerseys are knocking in three-pointers on both ends and Blue leads Red 71-69 with 3:20 remaining.
Perry Ellis also drilled a three and darn near everybody but some of the walk-ons have nailed three-pointers in this game today. Incredible to see the shooting display they're putting on. It's like San Antonio studs Danny Green and Gary Neal are in the building.
4:24 p.m. Update:
Brady Morningstar shows he can still play a little D, staying with Frank Mason on a drive to the hole and then swatting a lay-up attempt. Evan Manning and Tyler Self got the Free State connection going on a couple of three-pointers and the Blue squad has taken the lead, 64-62, after a three-point play by Frank Mason.
6:45 to play.
4:21 p.m. Update:
Just as one of our commenters asked whether Perry Ellis was playing, the sophomore forward connected on the finishing end of an alley-oop to pull the Blue within seven points. Tarik Black followed with a steal and dunk in transition and the current squad pulls to within five at 60-55, with 9:04 left.
4:19 p.m. Update:
Blue had pulled to within six on a Wayne Selden three but Taylor answered it on the other end and then got to the free throw line to put Red up double digits.
Red 60, Blue 49, 10:43 to play...
4:17 p.m. Update:
Tharpe three-pointer (his first) pulls Blue to within seven at 51-44 early 2nd half.
4:14 p.m. Update:
Second half under way. Blue ball.
HALFTIME at the CAMP SCRIMMAGE:
Red alums lead Blue current players 43-39 at the break.
Here's a quick look at the first-half scoring leaders:
Conner Frankamp 12
Tarik Black 8
Jamari Traylor 7
Sherron Collins 8
Landen Lucas 8
Tyshawn Taylor 8
4:10 p.m. Update:
Even big man Joel Embiid got in on the fun, knocking down a three-pointer from the top of the key and then knocking on his head all the way back to the other end. (No idea why!)
Red leads Blue 43-39 late in the 1st half.
4:06 p.m. Update:
It's become a three-point contest here in the gym as Tyrel Reed just got in on the act and Conner Frankamp hit his third triple in limited minutes.
Red leads Blue, 34-27 with 5 minutes to play in the 1st half.
4:04 p.m. Update:
Mario Little with a couple of threes for the Red squad and Landen Lucas has added a couple of easy dunks.
Red leads 31-24 with 6:00 left in the 1st.
Conner Frankamp hit his first two three-pointers — one from deep with Jeff Hawkins up on him — and Jamari Traylor also threw in a three-pointer and looked surprisingly good doing it.
4:01 p.m. Update:
Red has stormed back behind a three-pointer and a couple of sweet dishes from Taylor and now leads Blue 14-10 with 9:29 left in the first half.
First substitutions of the game have been made.
Frankamp, Garrett and Mason in for Blue and Little, Reed, Lucas and Hawkins in for Red.
3:58 p.m. Update:
Blue leads Red early, 8-5, and there have been a few noteworthy things early.
Naadir Tharpe looks bigger and is wearing No. 10 now (instead of No. 1). Wayne Selden wears No. 1 and he's got an incredible frame and some crazy athleticism.
Sherron looks to be in the best shape he's been in in a while and it shows in his game.
And, as advertised, Tarik Black takes up a lot of space and is tough for smaller bodies to handle.
It's also been pretty fun to watch Tharpe and Taylor guard each other... Former teammates who participated in an unofficial passing of the torch at the PG spot.
3:54 p.m. Update:
Warm-ups are finished and it's time to go. A few nice dunks from Traylor, Selden and Mason in the warm-up but the highlight was Tyshawn Taylor tossing the ball to the other end from beyond halfcourt and watching it bounce in off the floor from just inside the free throw line. The campers went nuts.
Here we go.
3:48 p.m. Update:
A copule of the current players went to join the Red squad to help out down low. Joel Embiid, Landon Lucas and Justin Wesley are playing for the Red. So, too, are Christian Garrett and Niko Roberts.
3:45 p.m. Update:
Self saved the newcomers for last and they all got pretty good ovations after Self called them "one of the best recruiting classes we've had here."
As for the returning guys, Jamari Traylor got by far the biggest cheer from the campers when Self introduced him.
About game time. Brady Morningstar has also joined the Red squad.
Tyshawn probably got the biggest cheer of all, which makes sense seeing how he's a current NBA guy. One more interesting note: Tyrel Reed is wearing the blue adidas camo game shorts that created such a stir last March.
9 minutes to tip.
3:41 p.m. Update:
Bill Self introducing his current players. Sherron Collins and Mario Little have since filed in. Current guys will wear Blue and the alums will wear Red. More to come...
3:37 p.m. Update:
Camp game is over and the current squad is now warming up. Haven't seen too many alums yet. Jeff Hawkins, Tyshawn Taylor and Tyrel Reed so far. We'll keep adding to the list as the players file in.
3:30 p.m. Update:
The camp counselors are currently putting it to the campers. Of course, they do have former KU women's player Carolyn Davis on the squad, so that helps.
3:23 p.m. Update:
Camp game still going on, but we just heard some more news of interest. Andrew White III will not play in today's scrimmage because of a sprained knee. Gary Bedore, the writer not the doctor, says he was told it's nothing serious but White will not play today.
3:09 p.m. Update
Just got word from KU that Andrew Wiggins will not be in attendance today. The wait continues, but he is working his way to town and is still expected to arrive sometime this week.
Coaches talking to the campers right now. Then there's a quick manager vs. campers game and then the main event.
Keep it right here.
It's that time of year again, time for the annual Bill Self basketball camps to dominate Lawrence's hoops scene for a few weeks.
Every summer, Self, with the help of current and former Jayhawks, welcomes hundreds of young hoopers to town for several days of instruction, entertainment and, of course, autographs.
In addition to featuring the fundamentals of basketball and some of the ins and outs of the KU program, the camps often include some of the more entertaining alumni games in college basketball.
Today, sometime after 3 p.m., will be the first such game and its lineup figures to be as impressive as any we've seen in a while thanks to its proximity to the Rock Chalk Roundball Classic, which is set for 7 p.m. Thursday night at Free State High.
Each year that game, which, in the past, has included a ton of big names from KU history, treats fans to a fun night of good memories and laughable moments. With a lot of those guys being in town for that game tomorrow night, it ought to be interesting to see how many of them make it to today's camp game, which usually pits the current crew against the alums.
We'll be up there throughout the afternoon to keep you updated on who made it to camp and I'll also be doing a live blog of the camp scrimmage, while Gary Bedore tracks down past greats for interviews, Tom Keegan scours the room for column ideas and Jesse Newell shoots video highlights which he'll post on the site as soon as possible.
The latest reports from Twitter say that Andrew Wiggins, the top recruit in the class who recently chose KU over both Kentucky and North Carolina, is expected to be on campus sometime today. That word supposedly is coming from his father. But whether that means he'll be in town in time to be at camp or if he'll be able to play even if he is there in time, remains to be seen.
Be sure to check back around 3 p.m. for all the fun.
Annual KU football coaching clinic mixes good entertainment with wealth of knowledge and coaching advice
The Kansas University football program wrapped up its annual coaching clinic on Saturday with the back end of a two-day clinic that drew dozens of college and high school coaches from around the area and focused on everything from X's and O's to the way KU coach Charlie Weis and his staff run the program.
The clinic was structured in a way that allowed every coach that attended a chance to interact with KU's coaching staff in small groups and also allowed time for the coaches to give presentations on a variety of topics that focused on their areas of expertise.
Defensive coordinator Dave Campo talked coverage concepts. Recruiting coordinator Rob Ianello shared with the coaches ways for them to help their athletes get recruited. And so on and so on.
All of the coaches who spoke at the event showed genuine enthusiasm and did not mail it in in any way. In fact, several of them seemed legitimately bummed when the time ran out on their Saturday sessions. Here are but a few of the more interesting and/or entertaining points:
• Weis kicked things off bright and early Saturday morning with a brief overview of who he was, where he came from and where he was headed. His message was simple and he repeated it often: “You have to change with the times and be able to adapt you to your personnel not your personnel to you. It's a big difference, fellas.”
Weis, who emphasized a football coach's role as a teacher, said he first learned that extremely important lesson from the first coach who ever hired him in Morristown, N.J.
“When I understood that football is nothing other than the subject you teach, that's when I really became a football coach,” Weis said.
• Linebackers coach Clint Bowen, who diagramed run fits and discussed them in terms of concepts the way Campo described Read, Mix and Cloud coverage concepts, shared with the coaches in attendance some words of wisdom he first heard from former KU defensive coordinator Bill Young.
“The more times you can say always and never the better chance you have,” Bowen said.
Most of the material covered by both Campo and Bowen focused on generalizing your defense and the buzz words within it to make it as easy as possible to adjust quickly from one look to another.
• Offensive line coach Tim Grunhard, in wrapping up his session, made a genuine plea to the coaches in attendance to come up and hang out in the summer from time to time. Grunhard, who coached for six years at Bishop Miege High, said he never got the feeling during that stretch that KU's coaching staff reached out to the prep community, and he's proud to be part of a staff that values that and sees its importance.
• Strength and conditioning coach Scott Holsopple may have stolen the show by talking with great enthusiasm about the ins and outs of his job and laying out not only his personal philosophies about strength training but also outlining a year in the life of the KU football program. He talked fast and covered everything, from what the Jayhawks do and how often they do it during spring, the offseason and in season to what they do on a daily basis and why it's important.
At the end of Holsopple's talk, which went 10-15 minutes longer than scheduled, several coaches in attendance were so fired up that they turned to one another and simply said, “Let's go get a workout in.”
Perhaps the best part of Holsopple's session was not the behind-the-scenes look at how KU football operates, but the way he tailored his talking points to what could best help the coaches in attendance. Throughout the hour-long Q&A, Holsopple kept going back to the fact that he wanted this to be worth these guys' time and wanted to help them get as much out of it as they could, stuff that they could learn and take back to their programs and utilize.
• Friday night's portion of the clinic included two guest speakers, legendary Florida high school coach George Smith and Smith Center, Kan., high school coach Roger Barta. Before the room broke up into buzz sessions by positions, the two coaching giants held court on everything from their humble beginnings in the business to detailed
More than a couple of coaches, including Campo, told me Saturday that the hour-long session run by those two guys was as cool a moment as they had enjoyed in coaching in a long time.
• In addition to the individual time with KU's coaching staff, the coaches at the clinic were invited to watch Friday's regular practice and a 90-play scrimmage on Saturday.