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Thursday, November 26, 2015

Jayhawks excited about Diallo’s debut

Kansas forward Cheick Diallo gives a playful shove to teammate Wayne Selden Jr. before tipoff on Monday, Nov. 23, 2015 at Lahaina Civic Center in Lahaina, Hawaii.

Kansas forward Cheick Diallo gives a playful shove to teammate Wayne Selden Jr. before tipoff on Monday, Nov. 23, 2015 at Lahaina Civic Center in Lahaina, Hawaii.

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— Reflections from Hawaii and the just-completed Maui Invitational ...

Perhaps the only thing that might have made the Maui Invitational title sweeter for Kansas University coach Bill Self would have been Cheick Diallo actually playing and contributing during victories over Chaminade (123-72), UCLA (92-73) and Vanderbilt (70-63).

“Going into the weekend, we thought we would have him all three games based on information presented. We leave here at least moving forward knowing we’ve got him and will be in good shape in that regard,” Self said.

Self went out of his way to thank KU administrators for working on the initial-eligibility case and spending in the neighborhood of $100,000 in trying to gain Diallo’s eligibility. KU’s hiring of two independent groups to study Diallo’s core courses and provide that information to the NCAA proved pivotal. The NCAA had originally deemed Diallo several courses short.

“I’m appreciative of everybody who fought for him,” Self said. “If our administration had not fought it would have been a tragedy, not for us but the kid. He would not have been able to participate in college athletics.

“I think there are a lot of places that would not have fought, not because they wouldn’t want to. They may not have the financial means to,” Self added. “You are talking $100,000 on representation of something that obviously could have been handled in one week without representation if everybody was in partnership (NCAA with KU) and worked together.

“It (cost) would definitely have caused some schools to probably accept the ruling. Fortunately for us, we never thought it (keeping Diallo sidelined) was right. I’m thankful to Sheahon (Zenger, KU athletic director) for fighting and believing and fighting for the kid when we knew positively this was not being read accurately.”

— Self informed the Jayhawks that Diallo was eligible for participation in games (starting Dec. 1) at the pregame meal.

“At 12:30 (p.m., Wednesday), I told ’em we won’t have to watch him mope around any more for not playing,” Self joked. “Everybody clapped and cheered for Cheick. They were happy for him.”

— Self said it was nice to win in Maui after the Jayhawks’ previous two trips to paradise in the Self era.

“It’s a great win,” he said. “We finished second last time (2011) and also seventh the time before that (2005). It’s the best preseason tournament. To be able to beat UCLA and play as well as we did in the semifinals and beat what I think will be one of the best teams in the SEC and top-15 team year round ... it was a great team win, especially when we didn’t play very well (hitting 45.5 percent vs. Vandy and making 12 of 22 free throws).”

— The Jayhawks have bounced back nicely from their 79-73 loss to Michigan State.

“The Michigan State game, we didn’t close the game,” he said. “We didn’t play tough down the stretch. We’ve been better since that game. Hopefully we used the game as a teaching tool to make us a better team.”

— KU’s basketball fans traveled in droves to Maui, accounting for quite a home-court advantage in three tourney games in 2,400-seat Lahaina Civic Center.

“We had to have close to 2,000 people, I’d think,” Self said. “We had the whole building Monday (for Chaminade game). How in the world our fans got tickets ... they are pretty creative. I know the respective schools don’t get that many. It’s 5-to-1 or 4-to-1 from a crowd standpoint. There are few schools out there that travel really well, and we are certainly one of them.”

Comments

Adam Collins 4 years, 7 months ago

You would think that since we are all required to have Facebook connected profiles and it's against the user agreement (I'm assuming) that LJW would discontinue their accounts.

Freddie Garza 4 years, 7 months ago

I hate being required to answer marketing research questions just to read an article.

Kent Richardson 4 years, 7 months ago

I have gotten used to it. You can even lie and skew the results. Lol. I would think there are valid business reasons behind it.

Joe Ross 4 years, 7 months ago

If Im Kansas, I sue the NCAA.

Someone at the eligibility center clearly told Zenger and HCBS that the issue was academic:

"This was an academic issue, regardless of what’s been said. It was an academic issue." --Coach Self

According to the Capital-Journal, "Self told reporters that the NCAA had specified that this was strictly a coursework concern with Diallo."

Nevertheless, when the decision on Diallo was rendered, improper benefits were the scapegoat.

Let's be clear. This was never about academics. Never. The NCAA and Oliver Luck were stalling to look for more, and the truth is they were never going to find it. Good for Kansas that they decided to make the case a very public one, because short of a visible campaign Oliver Luck in his power-tripping would have been satisfied to see Diallo riding the pines.

The basis of the lawsuit would be that there was never anything having to do with coursework, that the fact the NCAA reported to Kansas that Diallo had only completed 3 cores in 3 years shows (non-racial) prejudice against his case, that the NCAA communicated that the hold up was strictly academic and then later cited improper benefits, that the three preceding facts cast doubt on the NCAAs trustworthiness especially insofar as stated concerns about improper benefits totaled 165 dollars, that serving an arbitrary 7-game suspension (counting exhibitions) has no formula based on "infractions", that the NCAA acted in an untimely matter which caused unnecessary delay of a resolution, and that Diallo's progress has been substantially interrupted by all of the foregoing.

Who's going to investigate Oliver Luck?

Joe Ross 4 years, 7 months ago

Don Jackson, attorney for Tidiane Drame, said Diallo received $165 from Drame during a 20-day span before Drame became Diallo's legal guardian. This came during Diallo's freshman year when he was making the move from Mali to the United States.

At the time, Diallo had already started the process of making Drame his guardian, though the paperwork had not been completed. Examples of the benefits, according to Jackson, included paying a cell-phone bill and providing travel, which included giving Diallo a ride to Walmart.

“The reality of the matter is, agents don’t give players $165,” Jackson said.

Drame self-reported the $165 to the NCAA Eligibility Center — “He had nothing to hide,” Jackson said — but was never interviewed by the NCAA.

“This is essentially what I expected,” Jackson said. “(Diallo) served, essentially, a de facto suspension. At the end of that process, they came up with an improper benefit of $165 to justify a six-month-long investigation.

Source: http://cjonline.com/sports/hawkzone/2015-11-25/cheick-diallo-cleared-play-gets-5-game-suspension-165-worth-impermissible

Sue these people! PLEASE! Sue these people.

Kent Richardson 4 years, 7 months ago

It would be like a NLRB filing by the Union against Management. We could post a letter stating they were bad boys but not much else.

Don't think we could get a monetary judgement. I guess it would be a civil suit before we/Diallo could claim damages but not worth the expense/trouble and the gamble.

Heads would have to roll and leadership in the organization would have to admit wrongdoing.

I mean we are pissed but really nothing there.

Joe Ross 4 years, 7 months ago

Im not so sure, Kent. I mean if a private college student--a single individual with no job--can sue the NCAA, then I dont know why a University with all the resources it has at its disposal, could not.

Even if the monetary award is not substantial, I would go forward to recover the expense invested in clearing Diallo. Facts on their side:

  1. The length of time it took the NCAA to investigate (six months).
  2. That it only took Kansas a handful of days (less than a week) to discover the information the NCAA lacked.
  3. The NCAAs misleading of Kansas, making them believe this was an academic issue; and more generally that lack of disclosure as to the nature of the inquiry until recently.
  4. The lack of communication
  5. Many other points listed in the 19-point letter addressed to Oliver Luck that Ill not remention now
  6. The points I listed above.

Before I believe that there is nothing here, Id have to see some reason to believe that a case would not be viable going forward other than your word (and I say that with all respect to you personally).

Dirk Medema 4 years, 7 months ago

Anybody could sue anybody.

It seems the point Kent was making is that it's unlikely there will be any financial compensation to be gained from the suit. The $100k is an investment in future recruiting. That's exactly what Coach Self was politicking for as well.

“I think there are a lot of places that would not have fought, not because they wouldn’t want to. They may not have the financial means to,” Self added. “You are talking $100,000 on representation of something that obviously could have been handled in one week without representation if everybody was in partnership (NCAA with KU) and worked together. It (cost) would definitely have caused some schools to probably accept the ruling. Fortunately for us, we never thought it (keeping Diallo sidelined) was right. I’m thankful to Sheahon (Zenger, KU athletic director) for fighting and believing and fighting for the kid when we knew positively this was not being read accurately.”

Joe Ross 4 years, 7 months ago

I understand his point. But it's not just about the money. There are larger things at stake here. Much larger that 100k.

Mike Riches 4 years, 7 months ago

I totally agree that a lawsuit against the NCAA would be more than justified. But I think the court of public opinion is as far as KU will take it. There is a reason why, historically, schools have rarely taken legal action against the NCAA. They are afraid of the backlash that a lawsuit would cause. An extra large microscope on everything that is said and done for years to come. Violations occur all the time in college sports, and the NCAA doesn't have the manpower to catch most of them. But it would come as no surprise that multiple violations would be discovered at any school that ever decided to stand up to the NCAA. Attempts to legally protect universities from this kind of retaliatory scrutiny have been foiled in the past (see NCAA v. Miller - 1993). Personally I think it's ridiculous that the NCAA has this much power, but it seems to be the case.

Doesn't this sound like a great "partnership"?

Joe Ross 4 years, 7 months ago

I understand your concern. Believe me. I TOTALLY DO.

But here is the rationale for going forward in spite of what our shared concern is:

  1. Hanging a loss on the NCAA gives a University legal standing in future cases. The University could suggest that the NCAA is a rogue institution who has been found legally in the wrong in a precedent case, and that helps Kansas to avoid this kind of thing in the future.

  2. Public outcry does not give a University the same kind of defense in future cases, and yet it is something the NCAA wants to avoid. If something similar happened in the future, the public sentiment would likely be that the NCAA is seeking retribution against Kansas. The NCAA knows that, and should want to avoid it. If the Diallo case had the backing of a legal decision, then in future cases I argue that the public outcry would be magnified...in Kansas' favor!

  3. The NCAAs actions still leave Kansas thirsty for justice. The decision on Diallos eligibility has not been rendered in such a way as to leave Kansas and Diallo unharmed. I think the NCAA should pay for this. Youll notice that there is some sort of inelasticity built into the current system, where the NCAA can act with impunity and live with no fear of doing this again. If they are afraid that schools may sue them citing a Kansas precedent, then some of that elasticity is restored and you have the NCAA acting more judiciously in cases such as this.

Tony Bandle 4 years, 7 months ago

My Christmasw Wish List:

1] Chieck stays out of foul trouble and stays on the court.

2] Brannen has learned the difference between shooting off a three pointer and shooting off his mouth.

3] Landon goes hard to the basket but soft to the hoop.

4] Wayne, don't change a thing.

5] Frank starts to stop and pop at the foul line rather than throw up a Hail Mary in traffic.

6] Perry gets mad once in awhile.

7] Carlton eats everything in sight and grows into the monster he is destined to become.

8] Our sophomore guard makes such an impact I remember his name. [Devonte, I know]:).

9] Hunter bangs the boards and the opposing big guys with the same abandon.

10] Jamari stays the second biggest hustler on the squad.

11] Svi presses for title of best shooter on KU.

12] Mr.Vck developes into a words that rhyme with his last name.[slick,quick,sick].

13] The walk-ons set a record for total playing time in a season.

14] Coach Self gets #12 and #2!!

Mark Lindrud 4 years, 7 months ago

My changes I would make: 3) Landon can make a bucket under the basket instead of the ball going somewhere that we don't know where it will end up.

1) Chieck ends up starting soon.

15) Decide on a rotation of 9 guys and stick with it. This isn't Oprah coaching, "You get to play, you get to play, everyone gets to play!" This is a push for the final four, and we need our most consistent guys night in and night out to play that can get us there.

Kent Richardson 4 years, 7 months ago

We should really roll in our next game against Loyola (MD). Especially if their leading scorer's Grandmother plays.

I was looking for Perry to score close to 20 this year but with as many options as we are showing he will have to be really aggressive in almost every game.

Looking at Cheick's highlights he is a better rim defender, albeit against other HS all stars, than I thought. Runs the court really well and is as high motor as advertised. Really high motor. It could be contagious on a push the ball team like we are (sometimes). I wish we would push it a little more but it seems obvious Bill does have them hitting the defensive glass as much as possible, even our guards.

Joe Ross 4 years, 7 months ago

Parting shot. I wish someone would tell me when Drame spent the measly 165.00. The NCAA only has jurisdiction over prospective student athletes, which begins in their freshmen year. If the money was spent before that time, it is outside of the purview of the NCAAs authority.

Don Radina 4 years, 7 months ago

If history repeats itself Bill Self will keep Cheick on the bench until he learns to humble himself . That may never happen until Cheick drafts out. Nobody is allowed to be a Star Player on Self's team.

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