Latest ankle update
KU coach Bill Self said sophomore Cole Aldrich (stress reaction left ankle) practiced full speed Monday and Tuesday and will practice again today in preparation for the N.D. State game.
“I gave him off Saturday and Sunday,” Self said, indicating Aldrich otherwise has practiced “every day.”
Aldrich said the ankle does not bother him when he’s on the court.
“It’s very minor,” he said. “The boot (he wears off the court) is there to keep stress off my ankle. I’m feeling good.”
The Jayhawks are scheduled to leave Allen Fieldhouse for Topeka’s Forbes Field at 2 p.m. today. KU will hold a shootaround from 1:30 to 2:10 p.m., Thursday at the Metrodome. It is open to the public. The Bison will practice from noon to 12:40 p.m. Thursday at the dome.
Academic tourney report
KU’s basketball team won four games and advanced to the Final Four of the 2009 Inside Higher Ed Academic Performance Tournament, sponsored by Inside Higher Ed Magazine.
Teams were matched against each other based on the NCAA’s Academic Progress rate.
KU defeated North Dakota State in the classroom in a first-round APR matchup, then stopped Dayton in the second round.
The Jayhawks toppled Michigan State in the Sweet 16 classroom battle, then upended Wake Forest in the Elite Eight. KU fell in a Final Four semifinal to Brigham Young.
North Carolina tripped Villanova in the other Final Four semifinal and stopped BYU to win the mythical national title.
To view the bracket, check out insidehighered.com.
Self said a handful of teams enter the NCAA Tournament as favorites.
“I think the one seeds (Louisville, North Carolina, Pitt, UConn), plus Memphis over the course of the season, have proven to be a little bit better than the rest of the field,” Self said. “When I say ‘little bit’ it’s just a little bit.
“West Virginia beats Pitt by 12. Syracuse knocks off UConn. Florida State just beat North Carolina. Louisville to me is the most impressive team the last two to three weeks. They won the (Big East) outright and the league tournament.”
Lance Stephenson, a 6-5 senior guard from Brooklyn, N.Y.’s Lincoln High, will announce his college choice April 1 at the McDonald’s All-America game in Miami, Zagsblog.net reports.
Zagsblog indicated he would likely choose between KU and St. John’s. Zagsblog believes Maryland is “out of the picture.” The Web site reported that KU assistant Danny Manning and St. John’s coach Norm Roberts “have been tracking Stephenson in recent weeks.”