Thursday, January 4, 2018

Self: De Sousa’s amateur status more difficult to verify than most

Newcomer Silvio DeSousa, left, sits next to teammate Billy Preston, who remains inactive, Friday, Dec. 29, 2017 at Frank Erwin Center in Austin, Texas.

Newcomer Silvio DeSousa, left, sits next to teammate Billy Preston, who remains inactive, Friday, Dec. 29, 2017 at Frank Erwin Center in Austin, Texas.


Had Silvio De Sousa’s path to college basketball mirrored the ones of so many American-born players who grow up playing in AAU tournaments, the Kansas freshman’s waiting game with the NCAA likely would be over by now.

However, as KU head coach Bill Self explained Thursday, because De Sousa’s introduction to the game came in his home country of Angola, gathering all the paperwork necessary to clear his amateur status gets a bit more complicated.

Every college athlete’s amateurism is examined before he or she can participate. In De Sousa’s case that involves looking at the club teams he played for in Africa prior to moving to the U.S. and playing high school basketball at IMG Academy, in Florida.

“Did he ever play in this tournament? Pros played in that tournament. Were there pros on your team?” Self outlined of possible questions that pop up in such a process. “You have to have written things to prove that he's an amateur, he wasn't a professional playing, all that stuff.”

The actual distance between here and Angola, Self added, has provided more hurdles, with the seven-hour time difference.

“Getting everybody over there to see what you want to do as their priority sometimes isn't the easiest thing to get done. It's not that easy doing that if you're calling somebody from the same town here in the States sometimes,” Self said. “We're kind of at the mercy of some other people getting the information to us, so that we can be sure and give complete information to the NCAA on that. But if he wasn't an African kid, yeah, it would be done. It's a little bit more hoop-jumping.”

De Sousa didn’t arrive in Lawrence until Dec. 26, and the NCAA offices were closed for the holidays until Jan. 2.

“There's been a lot of different things going on, because they have to give us the questions they need answered,” Self said.

Once KU receives the go-ahead to play the 6-foot-9 De Sousa, Self thinks it could take the backup big “three or four weeks” to get comfortable.

“Let's call it like it is. Can he help us in short spurts in the next week? Maybe,” Self offered. “I think he might can in the next week. But in the next four weeks when we get to February, I would think that would be as close to a full team as we will have this year one way or another. When we get to February 1, our team will be probably as close as what it's going to be. If Billy (Preston, also awaiting clearance from the NCAA) is or if he isn't, when Silvio is or whatnot, at least we'll be a team that can play together. Right now there would be no way Silvio could fit in, be comfortable and help us right now.”


Larry Knzas 1 year ago

As fans we may not like to hear it, but Coach Self explains things to a level that are honest and as insightful as he can. In the interim, our Jayhawks will have great nights and then some struggles. The struggling part stinks.

Andy Godwin 1 year ago

Looks like the rest of the January games will look much like the Texas and Texas Tech games. One night KU outscores their opponent when hitting 3's and then the next night are cold and get hammer inside because they have no size, and are marginally defensively. Self's communication regarding Preston has been extraordinarily frustrating - clear as mud for the past month. Now he states "If Billy (Preston, also awaiting clearance from the NCAA) is or if he isn't, when Silvio is or whatnot, at least we'll be a team that can play together. Right now there would be no way Silvio could fit in, be comfortable and help us right now.” Self would make a fine politician (never says anything definitively and leave one wondering what the heck he just said), if not such a great basketball coach.

Dirk Medema 1 year ago

The situation is undefined. Only an ignorant or unaccountable person would make a definitive statement about something that is unknown.

Fortunately, Coach Self is both intelligent and accountable.

Chris Bailey 1 year ago

Live and die by the 3 and we're gonna die a lot more in that situation. Drive the damn ball to the hoop!

Craig Carson 1 year ago

they try too, but no one outside Graham has that ability...Vick doesn't have strong enough handles to attack the rim effectively, Svi is a little better but has never been able to avoid charges..and Newman is still playing like he is forcing everything....this is a team of shooters..its who they are..they can improve but this isn't a team that's gonna shoot a ton of foul shots or score a lot at the rim...They need the Newman that tore it up in Italy and they need Cunliffe to provide bench scoring

Ben Berglund 1 year ago

The NCAA is out of control. Why have we allowed this cartel to impose that players' amateur status must be proven before they can see the court? We're supposed to abide by "innocent until proven guilty."

Jeff Coffman 1 year ago

Criminal law is innocent until proven guilty.

Shaun Battles 1 year ago

How do they manage this for 1000 players a year?

Joe Ross 1 year ago

Kansas knows what the rules on amateurism are, and they know it's not a surprise that recruiting De Sousa would have involved extra background info. I dont understand why they didn't get the ball rolling on De Sousa once he committed to Kansas. Gathering that kind of information in December rather than NOW would have helped tremendously. What could Kansas have done? Asked De Sousa and his parents about his athletic involvement, and then go gathering the information themselves. Now they're behind the 8-ball seems like. If Kansas doesnt get Preston and De Sousa soon, it's going to be too late for them to help us this season. Takes a while to both learn the system, establish a comfort level, and then figure out how the rotation works that best works together.

Jeff Coffman 1 year ago

I don't think they had planned on him arriving in December versus next summer. Although it has been known for a month or two, I think there are some things you have to wait on.

greg robinson 1 year ago

I’m resigning myself for this to be a frustrating year. The Tech game makes it obvious how vulnerable we are to a cold shooting night. I kept telling myself that if we can just hold on until De Sousa arrives or Billy is cleared we’ll be OK. Now it seems like fools gold. I’m worried about how far we can slide but one good game (ie: an away win at a dangerous TCU) will restore some hope. It’s amazing how important something as tenuous as young men’s athletic performance can become. It’s amazing how emotionaly invested we become. Perspective?

Joe Ross 1 year ago

...feels a little bit like we're sitting ducks this season. Gracious sakes.

Layne Pierce 1 year ago

At some point you have to wonder about the heart, the will to win. Fact is at best we win 2 out of 3 games with 3 point shooting, that is not good enough to win league crown, let alone do much else. We cannot play defense well enough to turn the other team over, and that's what we need. We are also a piss poor rebounding team. Also, why are we not shooting more medium range jump shots off the drive. Even that would up our percentages. Newman especially is good at this kind of shot, and so are Svi and Vonte. How many times did you see us on the floor in the Texas Tech game? We're too good for that.

At some times we need to work the ball for an open shot. We shoot a lot of forced shots.

Until and if these things are addressed, even if we get preston and deSouza on the floor in February, it's not gonna matter.

Sorry, but that's reality. Everything I said can be done, but don't count on it.

Rock Chalk Jayhawk

Marius Rowlanski 1 year ago

As you know, you go to play with the team you have, not the team you might want or wish to have at a later time...

Dee Shaw 1 year ago

It’s January the 5th and we are still talking about this. DRAMA. No decision. No idea on when. Ridiculous. This is no attack on the players, coach, program etc... I just can’t believe it takes educated and supposedly smart people in Indianapolis this long. At this point who cares if they come back. The only thing that annoys me is that it seems this happens more frequently with the KU program than other programs. I’m sure they have issues as well but we have a handful of players that seem to have issues getting clearance through the years. Not sure why. I’m just going off by memory but Josh Shelby, Ben McLemore, Chieck Diaollo, Billy Preston & De Sousa. Anymore when we recruit and sign players my first three questions are , where did they play, where are they from and are they eligible.

Steve Johnson 1 year ago

If everyone wants to play at kansas at one of the greatest basketball schools of all time, how can the recruiting class be in shambles every season? Texas Tech is in the middle of nowhere, no basketball tradition and not even a desirable school to attend and they destroy kansas with a team that was far more talented at every position. Something is wrong. Self is one of the greatest coaches in basketball but it seems that since Manning left, the recruiting has stumbled at every turn. Something is wrong in The Peoples Republic of Lawrence

Mike Hart 1 year ago

Steve Johnson: Recruiting in in shambles? We have never recruited more talent than we have since Self took over and the influx of top players has been better than ever in the last 5 years. This year is an anomaly, as we have Malik Newman (transfer) on the team... Sam Cunliffe (transfer) on the team. DeSousa starting his college career early.. .Charlie Moore (Cal transfer) sitting out this year and brothers Dedric and KJ Lawson (Memphis transfers) sitting out. In other words, 2018-2019 roster is projected to have FIVE transfers on the active roster. When 3 of these 5 are not eligible now due to transfer rules... and your #1 freshman recruit (Preston) can't play due to offcourt issues... of COURSE your team is going to be limited. An absolute unfair comparison to scratch your head and wonder why a 4 guard lineup has problems with a senior-laden T-Tech group who has been playing together for years. Recruiting has not stumbled, but for the first time in history we are a transfer-laden team. We'll see the true benefits NEXT season, but if DeSousa and Preston can find the court this month, we'll be solid come March. Self gets lauded for his ability to recruit, but if the basketball coach coincidentally had the last name of Beaty, then people would be calling for his head for recruiting problem kids and relying on so many transfers.

James Mathews 1 year ago

Mr Johnson Texas tech has 5 seniors, no one-and-done’rs ... you remind of the late 70’s early 80’s before Larry brown arrived could get in Allen for a can of food and place was half full of people who supported KU no matter what. Now we have a bunch of arm chair coaches who seem to solve the worlds problems every time you touch a keyboard. It’s tough to watch KU struggle, I am saddened by it. It happens sometimes hopefully to KSTATE.

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