Elijah Johnson's "Self Made" squad seeking to take home The Tournament's $2 million prize this summer


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You’ve seen it before at alumni scrimmages, the Rock Chalk Roundball Classic or various other charity events over the years.

But now there will be something on the line. Something huge.

Former Kansas guard Elijah Johnson and a team of yet-to-be-named former Jayhawks will be throwing their name in the ring at this summer’s event known as The Basketball Tournament.

The 64-team, single-elimination TBT battle comes with a winner-take-all prize of $2 million and Johnson, who appeared on Rock Chalk Sports Talk with Nick Schwerdt on Monday to talk about the upcoming challenge, believes his team of former Jayhawks will have the right recipe to bring home the top prize.

“I think that we’ve got the chance to win it all,” Johnson told Schwerdt on Monday. “There’s no way that I’m going to look at these names on the roster and say we don’t have a chance. Of course we have a chance.”

As for who those names are, Johnson promised to unveil the roster, one by one, throughout the day Tuesday. But he teased the lineup just a little bit and said there were some big names from KU’s past on the squad, which will play under the team name “Self Made” this July and August when the tournament gets rolling.

“The roster has changed numerous times,” said Johnson, who has been on social media interacting with KU fans over who they’d want to see on the squad for several weeks. “Overall, I’ve had 18 or 19 different names on the roster and we’ve had to narrow it down to the nine names or 10 names that we’ve got now.”

One thing Johnson likes about the team he has constructed is the fact that they all come from the same place and were taught basketball in the same manner.

“That’s what made me want to build my team around KU because we all know each other, even if we didn’t play at KU together,” Johnson said. “With us mixing our same background together and just knowing how to win, I think that gives us a better chance than most people from the beginning. I think it gives us that edge that most teams don’t have.”

Stay in touch with and this blog right here throughout the day for updated news about the Self Made roster.

For more information about the tournament itself — including dates of KU’s likely games in Wichita and how to get tickets — log on to for more on this year’s event and the history of the summer showcase that is now in its sixth year and has gained attention and traction year after year.

ROSTER UPDATES, starting at Noon on Tuesday, April 16:

(It looks like players will be announced one at a time throughout the week so stay in touch with for updates or follow @SelfMadeTBT on Twitter)

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Armen Kurdian 1 week, 2 days ago

Sorry, I think of "Punch to the groin" EJ and his play that probably cost us the game against Michigan a few years ago.

Drew Doerfler 1 week, 2 days ago

i remember that game all too well.....i liked EJ though...he was just playing out of position all year because Self didn't recruit a point guard........i remember screaming at self through the tv for about 3 minutes to take the ball out of EJs hands at the end of the game and he never did....just had to watch mistake after poor decision and stupid turnover....that one was rough...Self should have taken the ball out of EJ's hands though and let someone else take over......

Armen Kurdian 1 week, 2 days ago

Yeah I remember that, and then the drive to the basket and then the unwise kick out to Tharpe who was totally not ready or expecting him to do that. That was depressing blowing a 14 point lead like that.

Layne Pierce 1 week, 2 days ago

Do you guys also remember the Iowa State game that EJ basically won by himself. A game that made it possible for us to win the conference title?


Mike Hart 1 week, 2 days ago

Yes, I DO remember that.. but then I remember the NCAA title game where he blatantly punched the guy in the junk early in the game. He should have been ejected for that play. Then with a 3 point lead... and 13 seconds left, he missed the front end of a 1-1 that would have iced the game. Truly, he choked in that game. This article tells you everything you need to know/remember:

What is especially disappointing, is that even Self admitted it was a cheap shot.. yet he did nothing and allowed EJ to continue to play. Self's quote after the game: "The film doesn't lie," Kansas coach Bill Self said. "That's not how we play. And that was not smart at all."

Layne Pierce 1 week, 1 day ago

I think Mike that we could agree that overall he had a good KU career. He was injured his last year, and he was clearly out of position as a point guard. His foul in the Michigan game was totally unacceptable, but one game does not a career make.


Armen Kurdian 1 week, 1 day ago

I'll agree with that statement. I can even get past someone having a bad game, it happens. I just can't get past that punch which I think Coach Self called a 'thug move.'

Rick Schuster 1 week ago

The team wouldn't be complete without Joel Embiid. And don't forget Ben McLemore.

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