Tuesday, November 1, 2011

KU men’s basketball to field wacky lineup against Pittsburg State on Tuesday night

Kansas guard Travis Releford scoops a pass up the court after stealing the ball from Conner Teahan during the Late Night in the Phog scrimmage on Friday, Oct. 14, 2011 at Allen Fieldhouse.

Kansas guard Travis Releford scoops a pass up the court after stealing the ball from Conner Teahan during the Late Night in the Phog scrimmage on Friday, Oct. 14, 2011 at Allen Fieldhouse.


Bill Self says playing Conner Teahan at the 4 isn't 'wild' idea, also talks point-guard depth

KU coach Bill Self talks about Conner Teahan playing inside and KU's point-guard depth for its first exhibition game on Tuesday. Self talked to reporters on Oct. 31, 2011.

KU senior Conner Teahan talks about potentially playing power forward

KU senior Conner Teahan talks about potentially playing power forward for KU on Oct. 31, 2011 — one day before KU's exhibition game against Pittsburg State.

Kansas University’s basketball team — which has won 37 consecutive exhibition games overall and 35 in a row in Allen Fieldhouse — will be taking nothing for granted in its game against Pittsburg State tonight.

“I think especially with the absences that we will have, we will be taking them very seriously,” 6-foot-6 senior Conner Teahan said.

The 212-pound former walk-on is ticketed to start the 7 p.m. contest at either small forward or power forward following the two-game suspensions of Tyshawn Taylor and Elijah Johnson, seasonlong ineligibilities of Ben McLemore and Jamari Traylor and injury to Thomas Robinson.

“I have a couple of post moves. We’ll see how they work,” Teahan added with a smile.

The Jayhawks do not figure to be joking around during warmups prior to this exhibition against a Div. II school. Several players who did not figure to be counted on heavily this year figure to play meaningful minutes tonight, which should get the adrenaline pumping. KU has just eight recruited scholarship players.

“Our numbers are so small, everybody’s got to play anyway. If you take two or three guys off the starting lineup, we’re going to be playing with walk-ons tomorrow,” KU coach Bill Self said Monday.

“I’m not talking about the ones we put on scholarship (Teahan, Justin Wesley this year). I’m talking about Jordan (Juenemann) and Niko (Roberts). Those guys are going to get in the game. That won’t be the same team that will be playing in the Garden (against Kentucky on Nov. 15) unless we have a lot of injuries. It will give those guys an opportunity.”

Self said Naadir Tharpe, Teahan and Travis Releford would start on the perimeter and Jeff Withey at center. The other starting slot would be manned by either Thomas Robinson (hyperextended knee) or Wesley.

Believe it or not, Roberts, a sophomore walk-on, and Juenemann, a senior walk-on, are Tharpe’s backups at the point.

“Those guys play against Tyshawn and Elijah every day,” Withey said of the point-guard trio. “They are getting good reps. They are going against the best every day so they are going to be fine.”

Juenemann concedes that getting in the game in the first half, “would be a first, for sure. I was talking to my father last night. He said, ‘I heard Tyshawn and Elijah can’t play.’ He was acting real calm. Then he said, ‘Are you ready for this?’ I said, ‘Yeah, dad, I think so.’ I have faith in my teammates, and they have faith in me.”

Releford might need to produce big-time on both ends if KU is to avoid its first exhibition loss since a since a 101-93 setback to Lisbonne Benfica on Dec. 28, 1995, in France. KU’s last exhibition loss at home was 93-82 to Australia in 1993.

Self’s teams are 23-0 in exhibitions in the last nine years.

“It’s going to be a different pressure for me being able to have this role and be the guy to look to score,” Releford said. “I’m not going to go into the game saying, ‘Oh, I have to score for us to win,’ but I’m going to be very aggressive. I’m very excited. I’ve waited going on four years now. Now that I finally get my chance, I’m going to try to make the most of it.”

Self and the fans likely won’t know what to expect against a Pitt State team that returns four starters off a 13-13 squad.

“My expectations will change with this,” Self said. “If you don’t have a healthy Thomas and if you don’t have your starting backcourt, that’s 60 percent of your team. Tyshawn and Elijah need to play at least 32, 35 minutes a game each. It’ll be a totally different look. My expectations are we play with some energy, enthusiasm and see how newcomers react when they have to play a lot.”

• Robinson hurt his knee at practice last Thursday.

“I’m not going to put him out there unless the training staff tells us that we should put him out there. He’s not close to 100 percent. He’s probably a week away from that,” Self said.

• Self on the suspensions of Johnson and Taylor, which will not involve any regular-season games:

“In coaching, you have certain rules and guidelines you follow regardless of the time of year it is,” Self said. “I told those guys back during the offseason I was going to sit them during the exhibition games (for violating team rules). I am not doing it to embarrass them, nothing like that. This is what needs to be done. I warned them, they did it, that’s the penalty. I’m not going to go back on that. We’re here to win the battle over time, not to appease the situation to make it seem like something didn’t occur. These guys have been great. It’s unbelievable how they’ve been from an effort standpoint, discipline standpoint, responsibility standpoint, so maybe the discipline is actually helping them. So I’m not going to apologize for that at all.”


hihawk 2 years, 5 months ago

There is no nothing jaybate again. At least he keep it to a few lines this time and still didn't say anything.


jaybate 2 years, 5 months ago

"Regarding Players Being Paid and How It Might One Day All Implode"

Way back in the late 1980s Bob Knight reputedly said a good D1 basketball player often cost schools $150,000; that some players were making more than professors. According to Murray Sperber, in "College Sports, Inc.", it often came in cash.

Normal inflation would suggest that today's prices would be double to quadruple that figure depending on the player and school.

My question has always been: how do they get away with not being audited?

The bubble could burst if/when they are audited?

Why weren't players audited in the 80s, or now, or in between?

My guess is these large sums have to be laundered before being given to players.

Money laundering means using the same conduits that drug cartels and intel use.

That is a pretty hairy world to expose.

Maybe they will never be audited and things will never


kushaw 2 years, 5 months ago

Okay Texas Hawk, Here is a link that shows the current scholarship situation. I actually forgot about Braden Anderson having to leave school so that actually opens up another schollie.

1)Kansas-11 Scholarship Players, which means they have 2 open available scholarships right now. (2)

2) Teahan and Taylor are seniors-that frees up 2 more scholarships (4)

3) T-Rob potentiall leaving could actually free up a 5th scholarship for next year. (Maybe 5)

1)Open Scholarship-Ellis 2)Open Scholarship-Peters

3)Teahan-? 4)Taylor-? 5)T-Rob-? (Maybe 4 or 5 depending on T-Rob)


Kye Clark 2 years, 5 months ago

(cont.) - Did all the conference realignment talk hurt KU? Probably not with Tarczewski. It's possible it has had some negative effects on some recruits, but when Kaleb made his decision the Big 12 had stabilized and basketball-wise is probably just as strong as it was before the defections. Similarly, I don't know that having a poor football team has much if any relevance on basketball recruits.

  • For those of you who think we're in a good position, and want to make the point that most schools would love to trade places and have our "problems", let me remind you - this is Kansas. We shouldn't be scrambling to sign players last minute who have played for 5 high schools or hope that we catch the eye of someone who has de-committed from a different school due to a coaching change. We should have elite-level prospects wanting to come here, not begging for guys outside the top 100. As fans are we spoiled? Absolutely. But it's not unreasonable to have a certain level of expectations given (again) that this is Kansas.

  • So what is the reason for not being able to attract better recruits? And especially big men? I honestly don't know. Available playing time? Nope, got plenty of that. Anyone that thinks that Jeff Withey is scaring off recruits hasn't been paying attention the past couple of years. Has Self mismanaged bigs? Probably not. Every quality big that has came through here has had success. Big Dub, Darnell, Sasha, Julian Wright, Shady, Cole, the Twins, TRob. The only exceptions are CJ Giles and Withey, with Withey still having some opportunities. That's a pretty impressive track record with the bigs. I can see some reasons with the guards (playing out of position, having to sit/red-shirt behind Brady & Tyrel), but still don't think we should be having the struggles to the extent we're seeing. So again, I don't know what the underlying issue is, if there is just one or if it is many different things, and what needs to be fixed. I'm sure someone will come along and dismiss this post because I'm not a head coach running my own D-1 program. To them I will just say - please go over to the football threads and chastise the critics of Turner Gill, since there's probably no one on these boards running a D-1 football program either.


Kye Clark 2 years, 5 months ago

HEM might have hit several of these points. But losing out on Tarczewski is bad any way you slice it, and fans are right to express concerns. A few random thoughts on the matter:

  • Let's not just assume that Bill Self is running the only clean program in the country, and the only way we lost out on many recruits is because they were paid by other schools, or they were promised playing time, or that we were the only program who would make him go to class, etc. It's possible this happens on occasion, but with this many recruits lost it's not simply a case of "Bill told him he'd have to work hard & play defense to earn his minutes...". That's a cop-out. When you eliminate that excuse (and that's all it is, an excuse), you can start to make room for the possibility that some of the responsibility falls on Coach Self.

  • For those of you counting the 7 consecutive conference championships as recruiting currency, ask yourself: how many kids grow up dreaming of winning the conference? None. Does any kid say they chose a school to help hang a conference championship banner up? Nope. It's a nice feather in the cap, but let's not make it out to be something bigger than what it is. The losses to Bucknell, Bradley, UNI, & VCU carry far greater weight than our conference championships.

  • Yes we have Peters coming in next year as well as Jamari Traylor becoming eligible, but these are not the blue chip recruits many of you think they are. I'm not saying I'm not happy to have them, but these are 2-3 star recruits. Think of guys like Darnell Jackson & Sasha Kaun, who were not immediate impact players until their junior and senior years. Now consider they were both 4 star recruits, rated in the top 60. So while Peters & Traylor will certainly add depth to the frontcourt, we need another polished post player to compliment Ellis next year and down the line.


rockchalkjayhawk4ku11 2 years, 5 months ago

anyone know where to find the game online?


kushaw 2 years, 5 months ago

NCAA, recruiting, and whatever goes on behind the scenes is going to come out sooner rather than later. The more people keep hinting and talking about this the higher chance somebody is going to break a huge story.


Justin Daniel 2 years, 5 months ago

We need a scorer, I don't know which one would fit that description better, Jackson or White, but that has to be a priority. If we land a pure scorer this year, we can recruit a couple more bigs for the following year.


Tony Bandle 2 years, 5 months ago

Nino Jackson is but a phone call away. He has been a Jayhawk lean for a long, long time. He has Kansas rated high on his yahoo school list and says what an honor it would be to be a Jayhawk.

HCBS, though hesitant about some off-court issues with Nino, may still feel a Jayhawk in hand is better than two in the bush.

And I agree: McLemore. Traylor Peters Ellis and Jackson would be a nice recruiting class.

Coupled with Seniors Johnson, Releford, Withey and Young add Tharpe and Wesley and this team in 2012 2013 looks just great!!!


texashawk10 2 years, 5 months ago

I'm going to say that Jeff Withey is the reason KU didn't land Tarc. Not anything negative against Withey, but he is only a junior and will be back next season for Tarc's freshmen season which means Withey would likely start over Tarc and Tarc would come off the bench and not get very many minutes. UA on the other hand, has a bunch of 4's who will likely play both the 4 and 5 spots this year and Tarc will have every opportunity to be a starter at UA next season at the 5 spot and since immediate PT always seems to be a factor with recruits this highly ranked, UA had more of it than KU does.

If you ask me what's happened with KU recruiting the last two seasons, it boils down to the class sizes unexpectedly switching on Bill Self with the 2011 class ending up being about the size the 2012 class was expected to be and the 2012 class being about the size the 2011 class was expected to be. I don't think Self has lost it as a recruiter, he had a situation occur that was unexpected and KU didn't have many options because of the players left when the class sizes flip-flopped on Self and I think Self did a good job of filling the roster with a bunch of players who will be core players that will be at KU for 4 years. Anderson, Traylor, and McLemore being deemed ineligible definitely hurts KU this year, but with Traylor and McLemore being able to play next season, it's like adding two new recruits for the season which makes next years recruiting class look like Perry Ellis, Ben McLemore, Zach Peters, and Jamari Traylor which is a pretty solid class with the potential to add one more in the spring after T-Rob declares for the draft. I don't see KU signing anyone until the spring until after T-Rob declares for the draft so that Self knows that schollie is available instead of pulling Wesley's scholly and making Keith Langford pay his way again (although Langford can more than afford it). Nino Jackson seems to be the most likely candidate to get that last scholarship, but I wouldn't expect to see him sign until the spring signing period if he's still available at that time.


RockChalkGuy 2 years, 5 months ago

I've have been waiting for this day for a very long time. Let's get it started, Jayhawks!


Robert Brock 2 years, 5 months ago

Due to the trend in KU recruiting, we need to get used to seeing wacky lineups.


cool_beans 2 years, 5 months ago

no matter who starts, it's still better than watching the football team


Redlandsjhawk 2 years, 5 months ago

Well we knew this season was going to be "interesting." Might as well start the fun right out of the gate. Also haven't you ever commented during a game that "our subs could beat most teams?" Well tonight we get to test that theory once and for all! Seriously though I can see a lot of positives from this situation in regards to player confidence and development. I believe it will be a fun game to watch. Also regarding why did we lose Tarc? Just take him at his word. He just fell in love with the place and felt a connection with the team. No more than that. It happens, nothing sinister going on, Don't read too much into it and as Coach Self says "enjoy the ride"


AsadZ 2 years, 5 months ago

Gary, I wanted to post this comment on Kaleb's decison article but I cant get on it, perhaps its jammed so I writing it here. I really feel that you and/or other KUSports writers need to talk to Bill Self on his views on why KU is losing so many top recruits and what is he and coaching staff planning to do differntly to have greater success going forward.

There a lot of HCBS supporters, including myself, who are uneasy on recent recruitment losses and would like to get clarity on this subject. Thank You.


BigTimeJayhawk 2 years, 5 months ago

What channel with this game be on tonight?


FreddyinLA 2 years, 5 months ago

Rele will be going for Wilt's AFH record tonight.


zkwku 2 years, 5 months ago

This is my first season away from beautiful Lawrence, KS. Does anyone know how I can watch these Jayhawk Network games on TV??


Konkis Dongington III 2 years, 5 months ago

Playing Teahan in the post isn't a wacky idea at all. Division II power forwards are seldom over 6'6", and Pitt doesn't break that trend at all. Just take a look at their roster:

No one over 6'6". Forget about the Teahan post match up. With no one on the roster within half a foot of him, this game should be Withey's time to shine.I'd be positively shocked if this game is even close too. Nothing against Pitt, but they struggled to be at .500 in D2. I'm fairly certain our walk-ons could take them.

Tonight will be a great game to get a better picture of what our untested and less veteran players can do.


Jack Wilson 2 years, 5 months ago

Observations -- from recent threads on recruiting, suspensions, etc: 1. Funny how some think that everything that goes wrong was planned by coach Self. 2. How can a recruit can be crucial, then when we don't get him, it doesn't matter? 3. Odd how some can think our depth is not an issue. 4. Defenders of TT are dwindling; some still think he's a team leader. How? Why? Was he ever a leader? He doesn't need to be a leader. Just play well, and don't be a negative influence -- those are his biggest challenges. Leadership isn't on the radar. 5. Most puzzling to me are the blind defenders of coach Self. Self gets all the credit for everything; he's God; when things don't go well, he gets none of the blame and is beyond reproach. I say "blind" because the facts don't matter. Self isn't human. He doesn't make mistakes, or bad judgments. And above all, he shouldn't be questioned by anyone who is not a D-1 basketball coach of an elite program. 6. It is embarrassing that KU basketball is in this position regarding its roster. There's no dressing it up. We might win, we might do fine, but because of poor decisions/results, KU basketball .. a top 5 program .. has Justin Wesley, a walk-on, as the first back-up to TRob and Withey; and Teahan as the potential the first 2 guard off the bench. It doesn't matter if Wesley or Teahan are studs. This shouldn't happen.

  1. Most importantly, why are we having the recruiting difficulties? I cannot understand for one minute why Kaleb T. would choose AZ over what KU has to offer. But it's not just him. That's one high school kid. Who knows .. warm temps in Tucson means women with more showing. It could be that simple. But it's the repeated major misses and inability to recruit big men over the past recruiting periods (counting this one so far). And it is the Selby fiasco. And the fact that 3 freshmen we recruited can't even play.
  2. On the flip side, I love the "sky is falling" posts. Not just criticism, or skepticism, or frustration .. the ones that basically say it's over.

But the season starts tonight. Glass half full.


Cody Stumma 2 years, 5 months ago

We could play the walk-ons and still win by 20.


Adam James 2 years, 5 months ago

Is this game being streamed anywhere on a replay or live.... I checked ESPN360 and they are not picking it up.


hawk4evr2 2 years, 5 months ago

Blackhawk you are spot on. Kackley this isn't pessimism, it's realism. So called fans like you need to pull your head out of the sand and admit to what is really happening at our great university. It's time that our leadership, BGL and SZ step up and start making some of the difficult decisions that need to be made. Without them, it's only going to get worse.


HawkKlaw 2 years, 5 months ago

I'm just glad KU basketball is back. No TT, EJ or TRob? Oh well. It's just an exhibition game people! Plus, we get to see some bench players in action. TT, EJ and Trob will be beasts this year. They're veterans, and while getting these exhibition games under their belts would be nice, they don't necessarily need it. The guys playing in this game need the experience more than anything. It's all a part of HCBS's master plan. Let the season begin!


Bill Kackley 2 years, 5 months ago

Oh my God, I can't believe the pessimists on this sight.


REHawk 2 years, 5 months ago

Best post yet, on this thread: Bonnie could loan some of her players. Seriously, if TRob's recovery might be set back, then chain him to the bench, even if we suffer an exhibition loss. Bill Self exhibits a smooth manner of painting over flaws in the veneer of his players. Gotta hope that EJ and TT are truly on the path to higher ground throughout this season. Coach's paint can must be running near empty.


Ben Kane 2 years, 5 months ago

we will be fine. who cares if we lose the exhibition game. didn't syracuse do that and then win the championship two years ago?


Martin Rosenblum 2 years, 5 months ago

It is an "Exhibition Game", right? Why not gst the Legends of the Phog players back together and put on a Real exhibition?

Or, maybe Bonnie could loan us some of her players, just to keep the bench looking full.


William Blake 2 years, 5 months ago

Leave Thomas out of this game. He's too valuable to risk in a game like this.


jhwkfan162515 2 years, 5 months ago

Can we still get some bodies from the football team onto the basketball roster?


Matt Bowers 2 years, 5 months ago

Blackhawk, I agree with what you are saying. Something has got to give. The responsibility lies with the student athlete, coach, AD, and Chancellor. Do they offer a class at KU for incoming athletes about the temptations, jersey chasers, and the spot light? Its like a three year episode of "KU gone wild."

Any chance at a link for this game? I would love to see this match up.

Rock Chalk


blackhawkjayhawk 2 years, 5 months ago

This really is as low as I've seen our great university in 30 years.

Fights between teams, an ugly firing of the football coach, a huge scandal and prison sentences in the athletic department, one of the worst football teams we've ever fielded, last place in the all-sports rankings, enrollment dropping while K-State's is on the rise and now a precipitous drop in basketball recruiting off the court combined with 3 academic ineligbiles and two suspensions.

Being a KU fan right now is like living a week of Mondays. We have a mess on our hands. It's time to get it fixed. It's While it's important not to panic, some smart and decisive action needs to start rolling out of the AD and Chancellor's offices.


Jeff Schartz 2 years, 5 months ago

Did somebody say "redshirt"? That is absolutely ridiculous! This team is thin as it is! We can't afford to lose anybody accidentally, much less, intently.


mojayhawk 2 years, 5 months ago

Hoops are Hoops! Bring it on.


jhawkrulz 2 years, 5 months ago

We still win by 30! Been saying it all along.

You can still redshirt and play in exhibition games, so this will let Self evaluate how well some of these guys will play in a simulated game. Personally, I think Self wants to give some of these guys that play so hard during practice some actual game time and he knows they can win (and win big).


Bert White 2 years, 5 months ago

I use to joke around at games and play a game I liked to call "Finding Niko" (spoof of "Finding Nemo"), where I'd know we'd have the game sealed as soon as Niko was tossed in. It'll be fun to see him possibly play more than a minute and see how well he has progressed. That and people knock Teahan as being slow and a liability on D, so it'll be nice for him to set the record straight as to if that is true or not and hopefully earn his "senior playing time" these first 2 games so we can know what to expect out of him during the season.

I gotta admit I'm actually kinda happy the injury and suspensions happened and weren't serious on both counts. The one big knock on this team is the suspect bench, so we'll get to see what the bench has and should help show the type of caliber this team will likely be (minus 3 starters = most likely only going to get better, so my theroy is look good today and the 8th, possibly look great with Tyshawn, EJ, & T-Rob).


Funhawk 2 years, 5 months ago

This will be one wonderfully wacky and hilariously hip game! Can't wait to see our team and go, Who are these guys? And, if we lose, we may get another ESPN Award for biggest upset of the year. Ya-hoo! "Fire the coach!"


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