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Late Night defeats Late Night, None-None

  • 7:30 p.m., Oct. 15, 2010
  • Allen Fieldhouse, Lawrence, KS

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Party in the Phog: Self’s Vanilla Ice imitation highlights memorable Late Night

The Kansas basketball team comes together in costume for a final dance before their introductions during Late Night in the Phog, Friday, Oct. 15, 2010.

The Kansas basketball team comes together in costume for a final dance before their introductions during Late Night in the Phog, Friday, Oct. 15, 2010.

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2010 Late Night in the Phog

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The Kansas men's basketball team performed skits and scrimmaged at the 2010 Late Night in the Phog Friday, Oct. 15, 2010 at Allen Fieldhouse.

Dressed in gold from head to toe, Bill “Vanilla Ice” Self addressed 16,300 frenzied fans on Friday night.

“Yo, Allen Fieldhouse, what’s up tonight?” Self, Kansas University’s eighth-year basketball coach, bellowed into the microphone.

The answer?

A lot of sensational stuff — of which lasting memories were made — at the 26th-annual Late Night in the Phog.

Self’s outfit, in his words “a takeoff on cheap silk,” arguably drew the most laughs of a three-hour show that concluded with a scrimmage highlighted by Marcus Morris’ 14 points and eight rebounds and Tyshawn Taylor’s nine points and two assists.

“I’m glad coach did that,” Taylor said of modeling sunglasses, a shiny chain and blue KU cap, worn backwards, of course. “I can talk about that at practice sometime.”

On a day Self is in a good mood, most assuredly.

“I think he’s an actor. He was funny. He likes to impress the crowd,” Marcus Morris said of his coach. “He did what he needed to do.”

“He’s too funny,” noted Markieff Morris, who had eight points and four rebounds in the scrimmage: “He said he was coming as Vanilla Ice. I didn’t think he’d come out like that.”

Self’s job as Vanilla Ice was to introduce KU’s mimickers of “New Edition” — that is Thomas Robinson, Elijah Johnson, the Morris twins and Travis Releford.

“Yesterday they asked me if I would do it,” Self said. “I said, ‘How dumb will I look?’ They said it probably would be a good laugh. They (marketing officials) came in and told me what I was doing today.

“The hardest thing I had to do was remember the one group’s name,” he added of Right Said Fred.

“It took me 30 minutes to memorize that.”

The Jayhawk players all took part in dance numbers, one player standing out above all the rest.

“Mario is the best dancer on the team, hands down,” Marcus Morris said of senior Mario Little, who had six points in the short scrimmage. “If you challenge him, you are a fool.”

The night wasn’t only about current Jayhawks, but former Jayhawks.

A rousing video was shown of KU’s players in the NBA. Former KU players Nick Collison, Julian Wright, Mario Chalmers and Cole Aldrich had taped segments, which brought down the house.

And surprise emcee of the evening was former KU and NBA power forward Scot Pollard, who showed up wearing a tuxedo, white shirt and bow tie. Too stuffy for the man with a beard that women’s coach Bonnie Henrickson said reminded her of Abe Lincoln, Pollard ripped off his coat and ripped apart his shirt, revealing a black fake-tuxedo shirt.

“Somebody picked K-State to win it (league title) ... that’s fine. That really is fine,” Pollard told the fans as he opened the proceedings. “You know why (it’s fine)? Apparently they forgot last year we won the Big 12 by four games.”

He reminded everybody in colorful fashion that KU has won six Big 12 titles in a row.

As far as the guys who will try to win No. 7 ... Self thought his Jayhawks played OK in the scrimmage.

“I thought Tyshawn was terrific,” Self said. “I thought Elijah (Johnson, seven points, 3-of-3 shooting) was very good. I think Marcus can score and do some different things.

“It was just what you’d think it’d be. It was bad ball. We’ll get some things corrected. We haven’t talked about defense yet. It doesn’t bother me at all or that we don’t know how to guard. We’ll work on that starting tomorrow,” he added of the sub-par defense to be corrected at a 10 a.m. practice, which, unlike Late Night, is closed to the public.

As far as the ballyhooed freshmen, Josh Selby had six points off 3-of-7 shooting, and Royce Woolridge had five points off 2-of-3 shooting with two assists and a steal.

“I thought Royce played well,” Self said. “I think Josh played fine. Josh was so nervous. You’ve got all this hype on a kid and much uncertainty with him (regarding eligibility) with everything going on. He told me beforehand, ‘I can’t eat. I can’t do anything.’ That’s a big deal to these kids. He was really nervous.”

Marcus Morris said he was nervous, but only while dancing — “I just kept looking down at my feet,” he said.

But he wasn’t nervous during the game and almost won it by heaving a 93-foot one-handed cannon at the goal, which looked at one point like it was on target before sailing just wide of the backboard.

“I thought it was good,” he said. “I just don’t like me missing layups. I’m still missing layups. I’ve got to work on that,” he added after his 5-of-13 shooting effort.

Popular speech: KU coach Bill Self spoke to the crowd twice, the first time in a role as KU coach, not Vanilla Ice. He thrilled the fans by saying: “Winning a national championship changed all of our lives (in 2008), and of course last year we thought we had a chance. We didn’t play well at the end, obviously, and went home sad. 2008 was only two and a half years ago, but it’s been too long. We need to cut down the nets again in 2011.”

Recruits in attendance: Several recruits were in the house, including three hotly-pursued high school seniors.

The seniors: No. 4-rated LeBryan Nash, 6-7, Dallas Lincoln High; No. 17 Ben McLemore, 6-5, Oak Hill Academy, Mouth of Wilson, Va.; No. 76 Angelo Chol, 6-8, San Diego Hoover High.

Juniors on hand: No. 27 Shaquille Cleare, 6-9, The Village School, Houston; No. 37 Marcus Paige, 6-0, Linn Mar Community School, Marion, Iowa; No. 38 Nino Jackson, 6-2, Ardmore (Okla.) High; No. 97 Zach Peters, 6-9, Prestonwood Christian Academy, Plano, Texas (orally committed to KU).

Sophomores on hand: No. 1 Andrew Harrison, 6-5, Travis High, Fort Bend, Texas; No. 3 Julius Randle, 6-8, Prestonwood Christian Academy, Plano, Texas; No. 10 Aaron Harrison, 6-5, Travis High, Fort Bend, Texas (brother of Andrew); unranked Ishmael Wainright, 6-5, Raytown (Mo.) South High; unranked Travis Jorgenson, 5-10, Rock Bridge High, Columbia, Mo.

This, that: Some fans lined up as early as 9 a.m. on Friday. “That was a great crowd,” Self said. “When I got to work this morning, I didn’t think there were that many people camping out. I thought, ‘This will be the one year we don’t have (full house). Sure enough everybody shows up. It was great.”

Comments

murph 3 years, 9 months ago

It's wonderful to have a coach who can not only produce results, but also can poke fun at himself - not take himself too seriously. There is no "poor me, Ol' Bill" stuff (no doves crushed, either), no berating parking attendants for doing their job, and no silly college-guys-can't-see-girls-after-10" rules. What we have is a man who knows how to act like an adult, how to be a great "face" for the University, and who still manages to have fun while he's doing it.

The icing on the cake was including Scot Pollard in the festivities. He is a great resource, and my guess is he's more than willing to lend a hand boosting basketball and KU. The combination Danny Manning AND Scot is a grand testament to the tradition and history of Kansas basketball - and more importantly, to the inclusiveness Bill Self brings to the program. We are lucky to have them all.

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Robert Brock 3 years, 9 months ago

I wish that Self could get Paul Pierce to help out at a Late Night event in the future. Meanwhile, it is great that Scot Pollard contributes to the program.

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lee3022 3 years, 9 months ago

I also hope that happens but last I looked Paul was out looking for his second ring. Good chance Doc hid it somewhere in the ceiling if the Staples Center! Maybe in two or three years. . . .

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100 3 years, 9 months ago

How about when the Heat win the title this season, we bring to the Fieldhouse a few Jayhawks for 2011 Late Night:

Mario Chalmers (would be one ring)

Paul Pierce (one NBA ring, one Finals MVP)

Jacque Vaughn (two NBA rings)

Scot Pollard (one NBA ring)

Wayne Simien (one NBA ring)

Jo Jo White (3 NBA rings, 2 Finals MVPs)

Wilt Chamberlain's Sister (she can just show up, we already know Wilt's accomplishments are unthinkable)

Clyde Lovellete (one NBA ring & Olympic gold)

.... There are one or two Jayhawks I'm surely missing with NBA championship rings, but at any rate, the only one who wouldn't be there is Wilt, but his sister gave him the knickname of "the Dipper", so she would be a solid substitute.

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Gary Bedore 3 years, 9 months ago

That is a wonderful post, murph. I'll leave it at that. Well written, sir.

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mgonzo182 3 years, 9 months ago

Did anyone in attendance notice the reactions of any of the recruits? Hopefully with the crowd and solid play, a good impression was made.

Rock Chalk Jayhawk from Oregon!!

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TrueJayAlltheWay 3 years, 9 months ago

I was also wondering If there were any obvious signs from any of the recruits indicating they were having a good time? Or was it the usual bunch of stoic faces, acting like they've seen it all?

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jhwk215 3 years, 9 months ago

zac peters sang the rock chalk chant, though he is already commited, but the two guys sitting next to him were taking a liking to zac and had a good time together...one was in a kansas hoodie

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Gary Bedore 3 years, 9 months ago

No obvious signs. You really can't tell. I mean that's kind of a thing we talk about every year, but it's just people watching the action. They were respectfully clapping n watching. Not much they can do, ya know? McLemore had a good time? Will he commit? Youneverknow. It's recruiting baby. Expect the unexpected.

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REHawk 3 years, 9 months ago

murph, a very nice tribute to Bill Self. "A great 'face' for the university." I have just perused all of today's articles. Marcus Morris' one-liners jump off the page. He's gotta be a sports reporter's dream for succinct observations.

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Dan Harris 3 years, 9 months ago

All I want for Christmas is Self staying around for the next 20 years and winning another 5 championships!

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Andy Hess 3 years, 9 months ago

"Self’s job as Vanilla Ice was to introduce KU’s mimickers of “New Edition” — that is Thomas Robinson, Elijah Johnson, the Morris twins and Travis Releford."

Wrong!

New Edition was portrayed by the 4 "New Editions" to the program (Justin Wesley, Niko Roberts, Royce Woolridge and Josh Selby) along with Tyshawn Taylor.

Thomas Robinson, Morris Twins, and Elijah Johnson portrayed Boyz II Men.

Reed, Releford, Morningstar, Teahan and Juenemann were *NSYNC.

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Andy Hess 3 years, 9 months ago

EDIT Releford was in the B2M sketch.

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Andy Hess 3 years, 9 months ago

...it was Mario Little in the *NSYNC sketch

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yovoy 3 years, 9 months ago

Addition = "new guys added to the program" Edition = "new 'look' of the entire team"

I don't know if they were going for clever word play with musical acts or what. The boy-band (wasn't called that then) was 'New Edition'. I DO know that we don't have 'editions' TO the team, but we do have 'additions' to it. So then, we have additions that contribute to this year's edition of KUBB.

Just in case anyone wonders how Keegan must feel.

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Chris Bruning 3 years, 9 months ago

mgonzo and truejay......i pay attention to detail to that sort of thing and ill tell ya what i thought.....first of all let me start by saying i was disappointed by their intros.....last year was incredible when danny led them to their first row seats and they got a very loud very instant standing O. this year the t'shirt tossers stood around too long throwin shirts and danny was leading them out and nobody noticed them they were all standing, but only saying "over here" over here for a shirt....i will tell ya now the guy who seemed to have the most fun and showed it the most was definitely angelo chol and already committed zach peters...by the look of chol i would feel pretty safe in saying he is a kansas lean.....the sophomore twins were very very blank faced the whole time. nothing, they hardly talked to each other...ben mclemore i couldn't make out from where i was but wasn't lookin for him cuz in my opinion he is and always has been a KU guy.....winston shepard had fun.......and i don't know who the kid was sitting by LeBryan Nash (not a recruit) small white kid with ku polo i believe?????talked to him alot and did the alma mater deal with him also.....i got the impression this kid is wasn't too interested until the dunking and scrimmage. im not a spy freak and the lights were out for the videos, but those are my scoutting reports, haha only thing i can tell ya for sure is angelo chol enjoyed it greatly......

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jhwk215 3 years, 9 months ago

we were at the front of the line at the doors we were standing at and the recruits came through the doors we were at, Ben came through about 5 different time, each time he had a big grin on his face and one time the whole crowd sang the rock chalk chant to him...i can see him on his way here

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jhwk215 3 years, 9 months ago

I was sort of dissappointed in the crowd this year, it just didn't seem as loud as past years and there were many 'silent' (well as quiet as it could possibly get) moments throughout the event. also, how cool would it be if we could get like 6 or 10 former players to come and have like a 5 minute or 10 minute game of 3 on 3 or 5 on 5? just an idea...

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Gary Bedore 3 years, 9 months ago

215 I disagree. Didn't you think during the videos the place was as loud as it could be? You couldn't even hear Cole's comments on the video cause people were cheering so loud. I thought it was like a revival rally in there. People with high decibel cheering most of the night.

Remember that year the 88 team was supposed to scrimmage? They politely declined at the last minute. It's about this year's team IMO.

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Chris Bruning 3 years, 9 months ago

i agree with gary...the crowd was awesome and i thought it was a much better late night than last year....much better

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