Originally published July 19, 2012 at 06:24p.m., updated July 19, 2012 at 11:46p.m.
Former Kansas University guard Greg Gurley has been named radio analyst next to veteran play-by-play announcer Bob Davis for KU men’s basketball games this season, IMG sports network general manager Jason Booker announced Thursday.
Gurley, who played for KU from 1992-95, switches jobs with former KU forward Chris Piper, who becomes analyst next to Dave Armstrong on IMG TV network games.
Piper, who played at KU from 1984-88, worked on the radio crew the past six seasons. He replaced Max Falkenstien, who retired after 60 years broadcasting KU sports, following the 2005-06 season. Gurley worked TV the past five campaigns.
“I’d like to thank the Jayhawk IMG Radio Network and the University of Kansas for giving me the unbelievable opportunity to work on the radio broadcasts of the men’s basketball games,” Piper said Thursday. “It has been a tremendous honor to work with Bob Davis and the best coach in the country, Bill Self.
“My family has always been my first priority, and as my children get older, I find it harder and harder to be gone so much during the season. In addition, my business (Grandstand Sportswear and Glassware) continues to enjoy tremendous success, which requires even more of my time. Because of these factors, I’ve had to make the extremely hard decision to pull back from the radio broadcast team at this time.”
Gurley joined KU’s athletic department in the summer of 2011 as director of development for the Williams Education Fund.
“I’m looking forward to this opportunity,” Gurley said. “Not many have sat in that chair when you talk 60 years of Max (Falkenstien) and the (six) seasons Chris was there. Working with a legendary broadcaster like Bob Davis will be an honor. He is the best in the business.”
The IMG TV network annually carries approximately six KU games not aired by a national network.
“This is a natural switch,” KU coach Self said. “Greg has great experience and knows our program just like Chris does, and ‘Pipe’ will be able to stay active with the television broadcasts and have more time for his family and work.”
Gurley, a Leawood native who is a graduate of Shawnee Mission South, also worked 10 years as analyst for the 6 News Lawrence rebroadcasts of KU games. Gurley also spent more than 10 years as a college basketball studio analyst for Metro Sports in Kansas City, Mo.
Davis, a 13-time Kansas Sportscaster of the Year and KAB Hall of Fame member, will be starting his 29th season calling KU football and basketball. Engineer Bob Newton begins his 27th season on the radio broadcasts. The Jayhawk IMG Radio Network is part of IMG College Audio, which produces nearly 30,000 hours of college sports programming each year.
Elijah Johnson scrimmaging: KU senior guard Elijah Johnson, who had arthroscopic left knee surgery in mid-April, has taken part in scrimmage situations in KU’s first three (of 10) practices for the Jayhawks’ upcoming European tour.
“He’s probably 90 percent, just out of shape,” Self said, indicating Johnson would play in the four games in Switzerland and Paris.
Recruiting: KU coaches have been scouting Peach Jam AAU games of Chris McCullough, a 6-10, 220-pound junior power forward from Brewster Academy in Wolfboro, N.H. McCullough, who is ranked No. 12 nationally in the Class of 2014 by Rivals.com, has received scholarship offers from KU, Indiana, Florida, Villanova, Louisville, St. John’s, Pittsburgh, Arizona and others. The Peach Jam is being contested in North Augusta, S.C. ... Xavier Rathan-Mayes, a 6-4, 205-pound senior shooting guard from Huntington Prep in West Virginia, tells Rivals.com he has an offer from KU. The No. 48-rated Rathan-Mayes, who is originally from Toronto, lists KU, West Virginia, UConn, UCLA, USC, Kentucky, Louisville, Marquette and others.
Summer league: Former KU forward Thomas Robinson scored 15 points and grabbed 16 rebounds in Sacramento’s 91-82 win over Boston on Thursday in NBA summer league action in Las Vegas. Former KU forward Darnell Jackson had two points and two rebounds in nine minutes.