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Saturday, March 7, 2015

Bill Self: A negative ruling on Cliff Alexander would keep him out of NCAAs

Kansas forward Cliff Alexander watches warmups on Saturday, Feb. 28, 2015 at Allen Fieldhouse. Kansas University officials announced that Alexander will not play against Texas after they were alerted to a potential eligibility issue involving Alexander by the NCAA.

Kansas forward Cliff Alexander watches warmups on Saturday, Feb. 28, 2015 at Allen Fieldhouse. Kansas University officials announced that Alexander will not play against Texas after they were alerted to a potential eligibility issue involving Alexander by the NCAA.

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Kansas University freshman Cliff Alexander did not make the trip to Oklahoma Saturday for the Jayhawks’ 75-73 setback, because of his issue with the NCAA that has been described as a possible extra benefit situation involving an agent and Alexander’s family.

Before Saturday’s game, Yahoo!Sports reported that Cliff’s “family” met with agents last August and his mom, Latillia, made a public filing in August tying her to a financial firm that provides loans to players who have declared for the NBA Draft and to agents.

If Alexander’s mom accepted money from the firm, it would be an NCAA violation that would likely render Alexander ineligible. He arrived at KU as an all-but-certain one-and-done player.

Podcast episode

Press Conferences & Post-Game Interviews

KU coach Bill Self: Proud of effort, disappointed in execution

KU coach Bill Self said he was proud of his team's effort but disappointed in its execution following Saturday's 75-73 loss at Oklahoma.

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Podcast episode

Press Conferences & Post-Game Interviews

Landen Lucas and Frank Mason dissect the final few seconds of loss to OU

Landen Lucas and Frank Mason dissect the final few seconds of 75-73 loss at Oklahoma.

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OKLAHOMA 75, KANSAS 73

Box score

“The only thing I’d say is I think we all hope all the parties would get on the same page and cooperate and do what needs to be done to give him a chance to get back on the court,” Self said. “That’s not putting anybody down. They’ve kept me in the dark somewhat because of the way the NCAA requires them to handle the investigation,” he added, not mentioning anybody specifically. “I wish everybody would talk it out. If there’s a problem, deal with the problem, don’t run from it.

“I do think there is a way to expedite it,” he added. “For everybody to be on the same page. To have everybody willingly, all the parties, whether it be Kansas, the family, the NCAA, all the parties say, ‘Let’s work together to find out the details so a ruling can be made.’

“If the ruling is negative, the kid will have no chance to play in the NCAA Tournament. He’ll have no chance to do what he came to college for, he’ll have no chance to help his teammates and all that stuff if all the parties can’t get in the same room and work it out.”

Self acknowledged time was running out.

“Here’s the deal, if it doesn’t happen this season, it’s done,” Self said. “If you are not going to do it (make ruling) to give you a chance to play in the NCAA Tournament, what makes you think you’ll do it in the offseason to give you a chance to play an exhibition game (next preseason)? That’s the reality of it. I’m hopeful everybody says, ‘Let’s just do it.’ Whatever happens we’ll deal with it is how I see it. I’m not putting blame on anybody. It’s frustrating every day to say, ‘Where’s this at?’ Basically status quo.”


More news and notes from Kansas at Oklahoma


By the Numbers: Oklahoma beats Kansas, 75-73

By the Numbers: Oklahoma beats Kansas, 75-73

Comments

Reggie Flenory 6 years, 8 months ago

It's a shame his parents are pimping his talent the fact that they have hired legal Representation let's you know they got caught with their hands in the cookie jar this is a prime example of counting your chickens before they hatch it also let you know that regardless of how well cliff played this year his parents we're definitely going to have him declare for the draft but now that they have ruined his freshman season it's going to set him even further back I mean it's not like he was a lottery pick so now either be drafted late first round early second round or have to go back to college or maybe overseas but this year has been a wasted year for him and Kansas

Suzi Marshall 6 years, 8 months ago

If you read over the web site for Ludus Capital (www.luduscapital.com) and have a chance to talk to some people how these kind of loans work, it's hard to come to any conclusion that does not support your statement that the parents got caught with their hands in the cookie jar. Apparently the Alexander family couldn't wait 8 months go capitalize on their son.

No financial lending organization, except the US Government, will make a loan without guarantees. The most likely source of guarantees probably came from an agent. No agent will make that kind of guarantee without some kind of contract, written or verbal.

If the Alexander family made a verbal commitment to an agent to secure the loan, Kansas could be in serious trouble. That would mean we have been playing with an ineligible player. The NCAA has a track record of vacating all games played by an ineligible player. If that happens, our #11 would be vacated. Sadly, if the Alexander family made a verbal commitment to an Agent, the best was for KU to hold on to 11 is for the Alexander family, Ludus Capital and agent, to not talk to the NCAA.

Self stated in so many words that Alexander's college playing days are over.

Aaron Paisley 6 years, 8 months ago

Your entire post supports my point that I've been making that the NCAA needs to get with the NBA and NFL and get those two leagues to start punishing the agents that run afoul of NCAA rules. Revocation of licenses, permanent ban from ever obtaining a license for prospective agents are the ways to significantly reduce these actions. The fact that Cliff's mom is in Chicago and Ludus only has offices in New York and South Florida mean someone told her where to go to get the money. An agent, or an agent's runner are the only people who would do that. So, like I've been saying, the innocent parties in this (Cliff and KU) are the ones who will be punished because the guilty parties (Cliff's mom, the agent, and Ludus) cannot be punished by the NCAA because the system is ridiculously broken in regards to issues like this.

Suzi Marshall 6 years, 8 months ago

The fact that Cliff has not spoken to the NCAA raises some doubt about the degree of innocence he may have.

If kids like Alexander don't want to go to college or overseas, the NBA should let these guys go pro out of HS. Of course the NBA won't do that because it cost them a fortune when that was allowed.

Michael Lorraine 6 years, 8 months ago

Yes. The NBA could stop this in a heartbeat. Refuse to do business with agents who break NCAA rules.

Walter Bridges 6 years, 8 months ago

I agree Aaron but it wont happen. They are content with the NCAA being the bad guy.

Mike Riches 6 years, 8 months ago

Suzi-do you know of a precedent for a team having to vacate wins, when the coaching/university staff had no involvement?

Suzi Marshall 6 years, 8 months ago

Mike - I don't want to spend the time to research specifics but I think the Rose/Memphis case could be an example of a school playing with a player retroactively ruled ineligible. Cal would be a better source for a specific answer.

Curtis Stutz 6 years, 8 months ago

Suzi, Memphis and Cal knew during the season that the test scores had been rescinded, but either they thought Rose would be exonerated or they just felt it was worth it either way and chose to continue playing him. Self isn't willing to take risks like that at KU, Cal probably would never do that at UK either.

Suzi Marshall 6 years, 8 months ago

I knew there were some different particulars but never took the time to thoroughly understand their situation, especially since we won the game,,,,which I attended!

Joe Ross 6 years, 8 months ago

Mike, precedent or no...that is exactly what would happen. Had Darrell Arthur, for example, been found to have been academically ineligible after the '08 NC we would have vacated it.

Curtis Stutz 6 years, 8 months ago

If there was no knowledge of academic ineligibility during the season KU would not have been penalized for Arthur. The academic fraud occurred at the HS level in I think his junior year. Not sure when they actually finished that investigation, but unless they finished it and deemed him to not have a HS diploma while he was at KU, his time at KU would have been untouched. In the long run they didn't take his HS diploma, so it had no effect on NCAA academic eligibility.

Joe Ross 6 years, 8 months ago

The following is an excerpt from a meeting of the NCAA Committee on Infractions in response to Derrick Rose's eligibility following the 2007-'08 season:

Memphis sent their lawyers to appear before the Committee on Infractions on June 6 of this year (2008). The lawyers were there to say their school could never have known in advance that in May of 2008 Derrick Rose would, in effect, be rendered retroactively ineligible for the 2007-08 season when his SAT was invalidated by Educational Testing Service (ETS). Here is what ensued:

COMMITTEE MEMBER: We have situations that come up from time to time before this committee where something is learned after the fact, such as a person actually played sports at another institution. Nobody knew, but that person didn’t have eligibility remaining, so they were ineligible. If you have a test score that is invalidated, you didn’t have the scores to be admitted to begin with. Where am I wrong?

[snip]

UNIVERSITY LEGAL COUNSEL: That’s correct. We haven’t contested that.

COMMITTEE MEMBER: Okay. So he was ineligible?

UNIVERSITY LEGAL COUNSEL: Yes; yes, sir. The university was not aware at the time he was ineligible.

COMMITTEE MEMBER: I didn’t suggest that they were.

UNIVERSITY LEGAL COUNSEL: Okay.

COMMITTEE MEMBER: I am not saying they cheated. I am saying this young man was not eligible to participate.

[emphases added]


Now as you know, Memphis had it's Final Four appearance vacated on this issue.

Joe Ross 6 years, 8 months ago

And then there's this dealing with the Arthur situation specifically:

"The NCAA must review college athletes' transcripts to determine if they are eligible for college play. If the NCAA finds out that Arthur would not have been able to play, Kansas may have to forfeit all of the games Arthur played in, including this year's national championship."

Source: http://bleacherreport.com/articles/24163-darrell-arthur-it-may-not-be-money-but-grade-change-is-a-big-deal

Curtis Stutz 6 years, 8 months ago

I may be mistaken but I was under the impression the NCAA investigation ultimately led it to believe Memphis was aware something may have been wrong with Rose's test score. There may also be some differences in who and how SAT/ACT scores are examined vs. high school transcripts (though I guess you'd think colleges are used to examining both to some extent since most students aren't going through the clearinghouse). Or it could simply be that Memphis and Rose ticked the NCAA off with inappropriate travel for his brother and Derrick not responding to their inquiries? I just remember reading a quote from someone, I thought an NCAA official, stating that KU would not be held accountable as the transcripts for Arthur were vetted by the NCAA and not KU. Certainly if Memphis didn't know about the test scores and you take out anything else they may have done illegally in regards to Rose, I don't think that punishment is fair at all. I'm under the impression there was more to it than declaring him ineligible after the fact and taking all the school accomplishments away.

Joe Ross 6 years, 8 months ago

Memphis did not know about Rose's scores. Not only that, but the NCAA clearinghouse even certified him to play. He was declared ineligible retroactively. Arthur's issue, on the other hand, could not be proven. Officials at the school said two different things and there was no way to prove that he was the beneficiary of grade changes. Here's the take-home message, though. Had there been proof, Arthur could and would have been declared retroactively ineligible and the '08 Championship could have been vacated because only eligible players are allowed to play for your team.

Aaron Paisley 6 years, 8 months ago

I'm surprised Memphis never sued the NCAA to get that season back. All of the mistakes in the Rose case were made by the NCAA and they respond by punishing an innocent party in the case. Why did the Clearinghouse pass Rose in the first place if there were issues with Rose's SAT score? That was an NCAA issue where they screwed up, not Memphis, yet Memphis is the one who received the penalty.

If you're going down a road and the posted speed limit is 45, but a cop pulls you over and says that the sign is wrong and the speed limit is really 35. That's a mistake on the county, not the driver but the driver is still getting punished for something beyond his control. That's grounds for a pretty winnable lawsuit just like Memphis should have a strong case against the NCAA fro getting their 2007-08 season restored.

Arthur Ankeney 6 years, 8 months ago

To me, the difference with this and all these situations is a player's direct involvement. The player's grades are his own grades, they are fully capable of knowing their grades and knowing when they're altered. If, in fact, it was Alexander's MOTHER who took this action (possibly to the point where Alexander did not even know about it), how can he retroactively be held responsible. As soon as he himself, AND the university found out there may be issues happening with this regard, Alexander was held out of games. To me, that's what saves KU and Alexander in this situation. Now, if it is shown that Alexander did know about his mother doing this, that would put him in the same situation as the above grade issues with Arthur and Rose.

Ashwin Rao 6 years, 8 months ago

I agree, Mike! I don't believe it is right for 3rd party to suffer the consequences of illegal activities... But NCAA is known to be unreashional... so the ball is in their court. If they do anything bad, it will be one more black mark against them. (I am sure KU will sue NCAA to reverse the decision as so much is riding on this).

Dan Pawlowski 6 years, 8 months ago

I hope KU would sue. Jerry Tarkanian crafted the NCAA Playbook. You keep the NCAA in court while you continue to defend your title. I wish KU would have done that in 1989.

Walter Bridges 6 years, 8 months ago

From cases that I remember including at KU, a lot depends on what the player or institution knew beforehand This is a particularly a sad case if Cliff didn't know.

Cliff NEEDS another year..he is nowhere near as ready as the Morri, Cole, TRob, Darrell Arthur etc, and they have had few successes. Cliff MAY go in the 1st round but near the bottom and the odds will not be in his favor of sticking around past his initial contract.

Joe Ross 6 years, 8 months ago

There should be something reflexive with parents nowadays where they should reject money in the form of handouts or loans, gifts, favors, or perks of any kind in relation to their son's participation in college sports. I mean who in the world doesn't know this by now? JUST DON'T TAKE ANYTHING! YOU'RE GOING TO HURT YOUR KID! Geez.

Aaron Paisley 6 years, 8 months ago

Some parents don't care. It sucks for the player, but that's reality. This is also why the NCAA needs to get the NBA and NFL involved in issues like this because I'm sure one of those agents she met with is who pointed Cliff's mom to where to get that loan. Stripping agents of theirlicenses is the only way to significantly reduce situations like this.

Walter Bridges 6 years, 8 months ago

I agree also. Their greed might be their own downfall. Cliff is far from NBA ready and could get to know Europe and other areas around the globe.

Jonathan Allison 6 years, 8 months ago

many of these athletes' parents don't understand the amateurism rules nearly as well as most of the fans on this board. We've been watching and paying attention to the sport for years, whereas so many of the parents of athletes don't get involved in college athletics until their child starts being recruited. Even then, they likely pay far less attention to the NCAA rules than they should while they are considering which institution is best for their child.

Kristen Downing 6 years, 8 months ago

Momma is deciding whether to pay the iliiegal loan back or not. I'm guessing not....good bye Cliff and good luck, in so many ways.

Sarah Carr 6 years, 8 months ago

When these kids sign their LOI's, KU's Compliance Office should immediately hand the parents/guardians a handbook that addresses what is and is NOT acceptable. Make said parents sign a notice of receipt of permissible and impermissible benefits. These signings should be simultaneous.

We can't expect the NBA agents to have any kind of a conscience...

KJ Quartermaine 6 years, 8 months ago

And you'e really naive enough to think the parents of most of those kids would read and study the entirety of the NCAA guidelines-bylaws "handbook?" I'm assuming you've never actually seen it. Its quite long

Walter Bridges 6 years, 8 months ago

Good point, its like reading all the pages of BS before checking the 'I Agree' box right before downloading from your computer. Plus his mom obviously didn't care, all she was seeing was a handful of dollars.

He should cut Latillia AND the agent off cold...

Joe Ross 6 years, 8 months ago

@Sarah....I TOTALLY agree. In addition, tell them of true horror stories where accepting the benefits blew up in their face. (Maurice Clarett?) Have a parent orientation or something where you talk to the parents face to face or via satellite. ANYTHING to inform these parents on what they can do and what they cant. They SHOULD KNOW already not to take ANYTHING. But stories like these make me want to pull my hair out. Youve survived this long...WAIT ONE MORE YEAR. Damn!

KJ Quartermaine 6 years, 8 months ago

This is getting real old Joe.

Sarah, just for full disclosure, Joe is "totally agreeing" with you, only because he wants to "totally disagree" with me. I apparently ruffled his feathers once on this board, and he now seeks out my posts, and "agrees" with the other person, even if they don't make any valid points.

In 2010, I took a Master's level course on NCAA by-laws, so I know what the handbook entails. I'm wondering if Joe does? Doubtful. I just don't see parents getting involved to that extent. They have very little incentive. Sure you could make them sign a form related to the NCAA by-laws, but what good would that really do? How does that ensure they actually reviewed it and retained any of the info. My points are valid. On the other hand, Joe has zero credibility when it comes to posting in response to one of my comments, because his so-called points are always based off of "disagreeing" with me. It's his MO, which is sad but true

Joe Ross 6 years, 8 months ago

In all honesty, I didnt even read your comment before my reply. Youll also notice that I left a comment prior to Sarah's above which does not reflect the position in her comment, but would go hand-in-hand with what she posted. At the time those two comments were made you had not mentioned anything.

The days of seeking out arguments are over for yours truly. It gets old really quick, and dealing with those who seek to argue never yields anything fruitful. With much respect, Ive got better things to do with my time. Take Aaron Paisley for example. We disagree on a lot of things. Most things, perhaps. But occasionally we find agreement. There is no vendetta between us. Nor do I have anything out for anyone here. There is a public record of my comments that you are free to browse. If you do you will convince yourself of it.

Walter Bridges 6 years, 8 months ago

Come on KJ..me and Joe RARELY agree yet it doesn't get personal.

Aaron Paisley 6 years, 8 months ago

You assume all parents care about following all the rules. Most do, some don't give a damn and will exploit whoever they can, including their own kids, to make a quick buck. You also assume agents and runners for agents are going to follow the rules and we know that ain't the truth either.

Joe Ross 6 years, 8 months ago

There is a different psychology that affects your behavior when someone looks you in the eye and informs you of exactly what the negative consequences will be both to your child and people who rely on him versus not being told anything and being able to behave as if people consider you ignorant. You are right that some parents will do whatever they wish; and yet upon the chance that such information to them would be useful in preempting violations, it makes zero sense not to do just as Sarah describes (including informing parents about agents and the harm they can bring to the athlete, the team, and to the program). Speaking of assumptions, it may be fairly assumed that parents given information to avoid violations will behave at least no worse than parents not given it. They may, in fact, behave better.

James Kim 6 years, 8 months ago

I really hope Cliff at least gets taken in the first (lottery is probably not realistic)- 1st round contracts are guaranteed for 2 years. Would hate for him and his family to be mired in debt (yes, it was his parents' doing, but I have no idea how desperate their situation is).

That being said, it is no sure thing that he will get taken in the first. He really needed a year (probably two) to develop a face-up offensive game and reliable handle. He simply doesn't possess the length or athleticism to consistently score against taller and longer pros with his back to the basket. Look at how badly former #1 pick Anthony Bennett has struggled so far in the NBA- he and Cliff have similar tweener builds, but Bennett demonstrated much more skill in college.

Just don't know if NBA teams will want to spend a pick on a project who has shown very little against college players. Could not blame a GM for wanting to go for a Euro player with higher upside instead,

David Kemp 6 years, 8 months ago

I agree. As far as I'm concerned I believe HCBS a sincerely is out there to build character and make these players better. If that's what you want and you want to be a winner come to KU. If you want the NBA Bill will make you ready, but you have to know it is on his timeline. This family has ruined this kids life. He had a chance but had to buy into Bills program. Being that this happened in August they were never on board. They have pretty well spent any money he is ever going to make.

Walter Bridges 6 years, 8 months ago

Wow.. Now that's cynical. I care because he chose to wear a Jayhawk uniform.

Lance Cheney 6 years, 8 months ago

And in wearing said KU uniform, he (and his family) may cost us our 11th straight Big 12 title.

Dale Rogers 6 years, 8 months ago

So a kid's family, or even the kid, gets some help from someone willing to bet on his future in the pros. So what? Why is this such a big deal to the NCAA? Those kids are good enough to attract that kind of attention, so let it go. It's no skin off the NCAA if these people want to try to influence the families. Why penalize the kid for something like this? I'm not talking just Alexander, but all the other kids in college sports, as well. Just my opinion.

Kristen Downing 6 years, 8 months ago

I think Self is trying to say, start talking to make amends, or your kid is gone. I think this is his last shot at trying to help Cliff, but he knows it is out of his hands. Let's just hope at this point it does not touch the university.

David Kemp 6 years, 8 months ago

Exactly, what is the point of legal counsel. Either you did it or not and what are they trying to gain in pursuing a legal avenue

Jonathan Allison 6 years, 8 months ago

with a loan that he took out against Alexander's future earning potential.

Brandon Dey 6 years, 8 months ago

Great posts all, but looking ahead to next year there are some concerning questions about who will be playing for us next year. Just recapping what it looks like at this moment:

  1. Selden, Lucas, Traylor, Graham, Mason, Hunter, Tyler, Evan, and Josh will be back for sure.

  2. Ellis will likely be back

  3. KO is leaving for sure

  4. Svi, Greene, Cliff have a legitimate chance to leave for other reasons

  5. Bragg, our only commit right now will be here

My opinion only -

Perry - he comes back to finish his career and positions himself for a 14-21st first round pick for next year

Svi - He might not have be ready to play this year, but sitting on our bench is not helping him either. I see him looking for a place where he can play every game. Best case for him would be to play overseas professionally. I don't think he wants to risk another year of sitting. He is the one I have hope for returning of the three though.

Cliff - with this additional information, and his parent/advisers dragging their feet to clear it up, is likely done at KU. Either the NCAA or Self will make that decision. Hope it does not hurt the program whatever the outcome.

Greene - He does not look happy on the bench, he believes he should be playing more, he seems to struggle with the requirements of Self, or the program too. He might have talked himself into the wonderful new trend in the NCAA, to just transfer. He is an excellent candidate for this. In his mind.

If 4 players do leave, to me we need a minimum of 2 more more players added to our recruiting class for next year. It would be great to add 3 more out of the remaining players yet to decide, but 2 would be enough.

Today's game was a refreshing look forward of some players that have not played that much this year but can and will next year. We are still a few players short though of putting an elite team on the floor next year. 2 more would be a wonderful way to reload for next year.

IMO.

Titus Canby 6 years, 8 months ago

Brandon, I've been thinking about the same thing. Next year IMO: Alexander - playing in Europe Oubre - playing in D-League Greene - sitting out a year at another school Svi - tossup between Europe and KU Ellis - If he has a huge post-season he may go to the NBA, if not, I expect him back.

The good news: Lucas, Selden and Mason are just sophomores. Graham is just a freshman. Traylor, Mickelson and Ellis will probably both be back for senior years.

Be bad news for next year: No bench.

Curtis Stutz 6 years, 8 months ago

It would be crazy to think that Kelly, Svi and Brennan would all leave at the same time. Obviously if 2 of the other 3 have left and you're the one remaining you realize how much opportunity you have next year. Only reason I think 2 of those 3 would leave is if a big time recruit was coming in next year.

The Alexander situation is really upsetting because he looked like he had the chance to be a TRob type contributor over several years and because if he does leave the minutes could have been used to develop Lucas. I hope it gets cleared up, really like the guy.

Aaron Paisley 6 years, 8 months ago

KU is going to lose Kelly and Cliff to the draft, and could lose Greene to dismissal if he doesn't get his act together. Both of Svi's parents are educators and highly value getting an education. Svi isn't leaving KU to go play pro ball in Europe for a year before coming back to the NBA.

Arthur Ankeney 6 years, 8 months ago

I do not see Svi leaving. He could have played professionally last year. He came to the states because he wanted the college experience and he wanted to learn. With Oubre leaving next year, and improved maturation, I definitely see him getting much more playing time and being a significant contributer.

Walter Bridges 6 years, 8 months ago

Great post Mr. Dey.

Greene will have plenty of suitors.. Anyone with his 3 pt potential and instant offence will find a spot on a power conference roster. I bet AW3 makes a lot of noise in Nebraska next year.

KO is a lottery pick w/major upside. He will never see the D League unless its for some rehab.

Hunter already knows that it will be unlikely for him to crack the starting line-up or even to be in the rotation. If he graduates this spring I would be surprised if he returns. Self humiliated him after yanking him after making a bad play in 14 seconds of game time. The guy sat an entire year to play at KU. I'm sure he has at least though of transferring to another school.

Without Cliff next year we need a couple of capable front court players who like physical contact..something this team doesn't have.

Svi could very well be gone. I'm sure he expected at least 5-7 mpg. Better to get paid than to sit.

Ellis will be back..he just isn't a NBA type player. Next year he will have his name near the top 10 in several career stats.

A month ago, I was thinking that next years team could be special. Not nearly as sure now.

Steve Corder 6 years, 8 months ago

As they limped into last years tourney with an injured Embiid, so do they enter this year's tournament with a key injury, a disciplined player and Alexander's butt on the bench.

Walter Bridges 6 years, 8 months ago

Yup.. but 11 straight BIG 12 championships.

William Weissbeck 6 years, 8 months ago

I'm going to be both sympathetic and unsympathetic to Cliff's family. There is an attitude among some that see "rules" as meant to keep them down and to take advantage of them. It's not a disrespect or ignorance of the rules/laws, but a heartfelt belief that they don't apply equally to all. Therefore, their first instinct is to look for a loophole - I don't owe this because you yelled at me. Plus, and I don't know Cliff's family background, there have been can't miss Chicago HS players that never even made it to college, because they were gunned down before they had the chance. There was a kid, Ben Wilson, at Derrick Rose's HS who was considered the greatest Chicago HS player of all time. Greater than Parker or Okafor or Rose, who was killed his senior year when he mouthed off to a gang member who he thought was dissing his girlfriend. In some big cities, life is short, or there is a fear that it is, and few chances out. Agents know this.

Herb Warren 6 years, 8 months ago

Concerning Cliff, there seems to be a great amount of Lawyering going behind closed doors. Would be interesting to hear speculation of what might be taking place with that. I'm glad I don't have to pay that bill. Also, I don't understand KU's reluctance to end this debacle. Has to be tremendously distracting to the team.

Shannon Gustafson 6 years, 8 months ago

How exactly do you think KU is being reluctant to end this debacle? Did you not read the article? KU has NO control over this, it's being delayed by Cliff's parents/lawyer not talking to the NCAA.

Aaron Paisley 6 years, 8 months ago

There is absolutely no reluctance on KU's end. It's 100% the lawyer not cooperating with the NCAA. Bill Self wants to know Cliff's status more than anyone other than Cliff so he can move forward in preparing for the Big 12 and NCAA tournaments. This lawyer is causing the delays because he knows the NCAA has no subpoena power and just not talking to the NCAA will likely keep any violations from ever coming KU's way. It's a two edged sword, but KU not taking any punishment is a positive for KU.

Shannon Gustafson 6 years, 8 months ago

That's a good point Aaron and something I hadn't considered. If that's the case, I'm completely OK with them zipping their mouths, Cliff being forced to go to the draft, and him not being included in any alumni activities in the future.

John Strayer 6 years, 8 months ago

I say...start planning now for no Cliff...if by miracle it gets cleared up in a week, then its gravy to have him back. But his play of late make me think we're not missing much in the short term...he needs lots of time to develop.

Kent Kossoy 6 years, 8 months ago

Not likely that Kansas will suffer for this except loss and investment into a player that did not produce. If you recall, Cam Newton's father tried to barter his son. Neither Auburn nor Ole Miss suffered. Action was by family. In this case, unless HCBS knew earlier, then not likely to be a factor to KU. As for Cliff, I say cut him now regardless. Good optics for KU. His family doesn't respect the honor of a KU scholarship. To hold him out as a possible return only plays for more unneeded press. The season has been challenging enough. Move on for both Cliff and the school. Is unfortunate because he will not ever be the NBA player that he might have been. Pig will still make his millions.

Walter Bridges 6 years, 8 months ago

You're not seriously comparing Cam Newton to Cliff Alexander are you?

Humpy Helsel 6 years, 8 months ago

Cliff needs at least another year in college, and maybe two, to really develop his game. Or, he is going to be in the D-League for a couple of years which is a very hard way to reach his dreams and the big money. Depending on the balance of the talent pool in the draft, I don't think an early 2nd round is unrealistic. I think Bill Self knows this and is playing his last card to try to salvage something this year and next, or it is so long Cliff. This is such a sad story for Cliff and other kids and families who fall prey to the hustlers and agents. Honestly, Cliff is not near as big of a loss as Joel was last year, but it is a distraction which needs to go away one way or the other asap.

William Weissbeck 6 years, 8 months ago

That's a bit hard. Cliff was "told" by Chicago press, and I'm sure a bunch of AAU guys, that he was just as good or better than Okafor (his team beat Okafor's) and a can't miss. Too bad they didn't take out the measuring tape and also test the vertical leap. Maybe they did, but if he's someone like Eldon Brand (not going to beat you with his height), I haven't seen it yet.

Titus Canby 6 years, 8 months ago

Does anyone here have experience in the world of superstar high school athletes and recruiting?

Agents and AAU coaches (and "handlers," "mentors," etc.) seem like the slimiest individuals in the world, taking advantage of disadvantaged families and potentially ruining Cliff's shot at a great NBA career.

But I'd like to know from someone who's been there. Can anyone shine some light on what it's really like?

William Weissbeck 6 years, 8 months ago

There was the movie Hoop Dreams, but it's a little dated by now. One of the HSs profiled was the one that produced Isaiah Thomas - a Chicago public housing kid that played in a near west suburban Catholic basketball power. There have been ESPN shows cover the AAU circuit. It's a meat market not unlike the NFL combine. There was a show about Trajan Langdon at Duke a few years back. He was a real exception - a kid that grew up on an Air Force base in Alaska. You wonder whether the one and done rule promotes this. If an agent had to invest 4 years in a kid with all the risk of injury and/or flame out, would the pressure be as great. Maybe the NCAA should adopt a split tournament, like the old NIT. Schools who choose not to recruit one and dones compete in one, the other schools compete in the other. Schools that have players declare for the NBA, lose that scholarship for a year.,

Aaron Paisley 6 years, 8 months ago

Blue Chips is pretty good about showing it from the college coaches side of the picture.

Michael Lorraine 6 years, 8 months ago

This sort of thing has always existed but the NBA’s one year rule has created a scenario where it is much more likely to occur. The NBA uses college as their free farm system, dictates the rules and then turns a blind eye to the problems it creates. It is mind boggling that the NBA and NCAA are unable to resolve a problem with such a simple solution.

Dan Pawlowski 6 years, 8 months ago

This is the prime reason why recruiting 'one and done's' is a dangerous proposition.

William Weissbeck 6 years, 8 months ago

The fiasco that was conference realignment should be indication enough that the NCAA has it's hands in someone's pockets, too. Or more correctly, someone is stuffing their pockets. It's an entertainment business you know. And as I keep asking, can someone, anyone explain again why we didn't take Louisville into the Big 12? If it weren't for Hoiberg's dancing and Huggins's rants, no one would know who we are except being that conference with the teams that storm the court after they beat the only good team in the conference.

Erich Hartmann 6 years, 8 months ago

I honestly would love to ask Self this question: "Obviously over the span of 10+yrs of Self recruiting to KU, it appears that 2, 3, 4 yr players "run our stuff" better than freshman players. Same applies to defense, with Wiggins being a notable exception. Not that it would be 'binding' legally, but why cant we focus on top50 talent that is NOT "likely" to be OAD??" (Meaning, maybe we eschew 'top10' guys?)

Michael Lorraine 6 years, 8 months ago

I'm totally with you on this but to ask coach not to go after the best players is kind of like asking him not to beat a team too badly. IMO the OAD experiment has been a total bust and we have now had three OAD players who have garnered the attention of the NCAA. We are only 9 years removed from a three year probation that occurred under the watch of a different, AD, head football coach and head basketball coach. I think Bill is running a clean program but this looks like we are skating on thin ice.

Joe Ross 6 years, 8 months ago

Ive heard Coach answer this question recently. I believe it was at a weekly radio show with Bob Davis. His answer is to do BOTH. Go after some guys who are 3-4 year guys (I think he mentioned Robinson, Tyshawn Taylor, and maybe Releford) and complement those guys with some big name talent. He thinks that if you ignore either then you're not doing the best job you can do in recruiting.

Erich Hartmann 6 years, 8 months ago

The standard-answer to recruiting always seems to 'default' to the logic of: "you always go for the top talent". It seems to cast a blind eye to the complexities of our own playstyle, and our own program's needs/requirements.

Face facts: Bill Self's entire HOF-nearing coaching resume was built upon the backs of multi-year players that were still decent athletes who stayed long enough to learn to execute efficiently and reliably. Of course there are exceptions, but my point is about the overall big picture. Look at all the MickeyDs that were not good enough to be OAD: Chalmers, Sherron, Arthur, Rush, Wright, Aldrich, Selden, Ellis, and CLIFF ALEXANDER.

Bill Self teaches a complete game on both ends of the floor, but you cant learn all that in 5 months of NCAA-allowed coaching in your frosh year.

David Kemp 6 years, 8 months ago

Erich you are right. My favorite player in the most recent decade was Travis Releford. Guy was patient, sat his time, made himself better under Bill, and became a very good if not great player by KU standards.

Curtis Stutz 6 years, 8 months ago

I don't think you are considering the number of "one and dones" at UK that have played 2-3 years there. If anything Self's problem has been that every time he gets a "one and done" they are done after 1 year because he actually teaches them. You'd think that would catch up with UK and other schools, maybe Texas or BU or UF trying to recruit against us, but somehow it doesn't dawn on the Cameron Ridley and Myles Turners of the world that maybe they'd be much more successful going to KU. McLemore wasn't supposed to be a 1 year cbb player, Embiid wasn't ranked all that high leading into KU, but out the door they go. Tarc is still at UofA, Walker is still at UF, guys that might have been one and dones at KU. You can't just not recruit them though, if we had a sophomore Chris Walker right now we'd be friggin' amazing. Instead he's wasting away at UF getting 15mins/gm. Coaches like Donovan can downplay the talent all they want, he's not developing it. Tarc's offensive game at UofA is pretty much garbage.

On top of all that, had Embiid not been injured last year the tune would be completely different. KU had a very legit shot at winning the title last year if he's healthy. Then all of a sudden we're one of the big success stories of one and done winning a NC and sending 2 freshmen to go 1-2 in the NBA draft. Selby is the worst of our experiences so far, and even he played a big hand in winning a conference title that year. Others have been very successful players in the time they played.

William Weissbeck 6 years, 8 months ago

Patterson stayed at UK with Anthony Davis, because Patterson was a head case, anger management issues. Cauley-Stein stayed because of his knee (just like Rush). The Harrisons are a mystery. Maybe not good enough shooters even though they can't be stopped in the lane. I'll be more curious with Duke this year. Okafor in gone. Winslow should be too - he's a bigger Oubre. Tyus Jones is the exception. He's a slightly smaller Irving, but even more guts than Mason, with a consistent outside shot.

Curtis Stutz 6 years, 8 months ago

WCS may still have not left, Dakari Johnson would be a big time NBA prospect right now if he were at KU. But it isn't even that they've been able to keep some of those guys around, they're able to recruit guys like Towns and Lyles in spite of having WCS and Dakari there. Calipari has had a long list of guys that could have sat around for a year and played XBox that would have gone lotto, he's got just as long of a list of guys that people thought would be one and done that weren't. Probably the only guy at UK that I was impressed by his improvement was Bledsoe. Maybe guys like Harrelson/Liggins/Miller for getting drafter at all (2nd Rd). Then you've got guys like Daniel Orton that got nothing out of going to UK. Alex Poythress is a Junior, he was ranked the #2 PF in his class. Does anybody even remember that the #6 player overall Trey Lyles is playing at UK this year? Yeah, he'll probably go pro 'cause he's too talented to not but yeesh, some team will draft him and people won't even know who the heck he is. He's 6'10" 235 with 10 blocks all season. ESPN ranked Johnson the #1 Center in his class. They'll have the #1 Center in the class of 2013 coming back as a Junior next year. Can you imagine if KU could get a #1 prospect at any position to return for a 3rd year? UK is the only school that can get guys with those rankings to keep coming in spite of how many of them have spent most of their time riding pine at UK and not improving their draft prospects.

John Williams 6 years, 8 months ago

While Cliffs current situation doesn't necessarily have the smell of daisies and roses, it still needs to assume its course; and obviously sooner than later. Everything that is being reported at this point is speculation due to the Alexander's hush hush posturing. The longer this draws out, the more I personally get the feeling that Cliff himself might have been in the dark about the behind the scene doings of Mom, Dad, and the "unnamed Villain . But maybe not. If it was something that could have been cleared up,,it already would have been. Thus, its apparent that Cliffs future is being decided right now, and what he is going to say will determine more than his fate but possibly ,......well I'm just not gonna go there yet. We really do not need this distraction as a team but its occurrin . Get healthy PE and W . And grow up BG and let's go win a couple post season Tournaments.

Curtis Stutz 6 years, 8 months ago

Yeah I feel the headline should be "no ruling" will keep Alexander out for the season.

Joseph Leon 6 years, 8 months ago

People say Oubre will leave early for the money. But that doesn't really make sense. If he goes no. 11 as projected, he will get $6 million over three years. If he works his way up to no. 5 after a dominant sophomore year, he gets $12 million over 3 years. Not every player could do that, but Oubre certainly could. He doesn't have to worry about having holes in his game exposed. He's the complete package. Kelly, stay and go for the big bucks.

Curtis Stutz 6 years, 8 months ago

$6M is a lot of money to turn down and take any risks with

Yonatan Negash 6 years, 8 months ago

Brannen Green is not going anywhere. Mark that one down, it won't happen.

BG has is the best shooter on the team and the team needs his shots. .

Not happening, I don't see it and does not make sense for either Green of Kansas to part ways.

Let's face it, we need Brannen Green and BG needs Kansas.

I predict, BG will have a great junior year.

Brandon Dey 6 years, 8 months ago

Great article on rule changes needed for college basketball in SI 3.9.15 edition.

I was not aware that 11 of the 12 positions on the rules committee are held by Div. 2 or 3 schools. Only one Div. 1 school is represented currently on the rules committee.

I like a 30 or 24 second clock, Coach K and others have seen college players adapt to it very easily as they play FIBA events.

A wider lane (international size), a larger "Charge" arc in the lane, and the international 3 point line. Add to that the reduction of at least 1 time out to help speed up the end of games and the game college basketball will bounce right back with better scoring, and less physical play due to more spacing on the floor with the changes.

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