Thursday, September 11, 2008

Self, KU against changing tradition


Don't expect Kansas University to copy Kentucky and move its season-opening Late Night basketball practice up a week.

"There's no reason for us to do that. It's part of the history and tradition we have," sixth-year KU coach Bill Self said.

He'll continue to hold Late Night in the Phog on the Friday closest to Oct. 15 - this year that's Oct. 17 - the first day practices are allowed in accordance with NCAA rules.

"I can understand why schools would do it, though, if they can't get recruits in (Oct. 17). Late Night is a big recruiting weekend. That's what schools use it for."

Kentucky this year is taking advantage of a loophole in the rules and will hold a two-hour hoops extravaganza on Oct. 10, a week before the Jayhawks and most everybody else.

What loophole?

NCAA rules allow two hours of practice per week (with the entire team) after Sept. 15. UK's two hours of practice time that week will be held the night of Oct. 10. The move avoids a conflict with a football homecoming game the weekend of the 17th and allows UK to bring in recruits that might want to attend another school's Midnight Madness.

Meanwhile, Illinois will hold a similar event after a home football game on Oct. 11.

Self dismissed the notion that it might be better to get Late Night out of the way on Oct. 10 or 11, considering his players might be tired for the first "real" practice of the season on Saturday, Oct. 18.

"If it was Late Night as in midnight, I'd say yes they'd be tired," Self said of Late Nights that used to begin at midnight and run until about 2 a.m. "Our guys won't be tired. They'll be out (of Allen Fieldhouse) by 9:30."

Late Night details have yet to be announced. Last year the official program started at 6:45 p.m., with the proceedings concluding just after 9.

As far as Kentucky and Illinois, ... NABC board member Phil Martelli told ESPN's Andy Katz the coaches' organization might examine the issue of practices being held prior to Oct. 17.

"I don't have a strong opinion one way or another," said Self, also on the NABC board of directors. "If you can't get recruits in and that's a better day to get guys in, I can see why you might do it. Never say never, but we are not interested in doing that, certainly not this year."

KU associate AD Jim Marchiony said Wednesday that ESPNU plans on showing parts of various Late Nights around the country on the 17th. KU's Late Night will be included in the program.

¢ More on Case: KU's Jeremy Case, 23, says he's had no problems making the adjustment from basketball player to Bill Self staff member. KU's new graduate student manager was a teammate of eight returning Jayhawks a year ago.

"I feel they (Jayhawks) have respect for me. When I was a player they respected my opinion," Case said. "They know me as a player. Now they understand I am on the staff. I have to separate myself.

"I definitely feel like I'm in the real world. I'm enrolled in six hours (of work toward Masters in sports management), but right now my first priority is work. I make copies of videos, break down games like our games in Canada and practice, do a lot of video work. I will do a lot of the opposing teams' game tapes and break them down on offense and defense."

¢ Recruiting: Dominic Cheek, a 6-foot-5 senior guard from St. Anthony High in Jersey City, N.J., will hold an in-home visit with KU coach Bill Self on Monday, reports. Cheek met with Seton Hall coach Bobby Gonzalez on Tuesday. Cheek will visit KU, Villanova and Wake Forest and two yet-to-be determined schools ... Zagsblog reports that John Wall, 6-4 from Word of God Christian Academy in Raleigh, N.C., will not visit Memphis this weekend because his mother is ill. He will visit KU on Sept. 20, Oregon Oct. 4 and Kentucky Oct. 11. He's already visited Baylor.


zissou 14 years, 2 months ago

Kentucky's version of late night is occurring Oct. 10, and Dominic Cheek is visiting Oct. 11. Does this mean he will or won't be there for the event?

jayhawkinATL 14 years, 2 months ago

I should hope so, ESPN...the reigning national champs, come on!!!

justanotherfan 14 years, 2 months ago

I thought that was Wall that was going to UK on Oct. 11?

Dirk Medema 14 years, 2 months ago

Visits are usaully for a weekend, so the more accurate statement is probably - He will visit ... Kentucky the weekend of Oct. 11

Drew Bender 14 years, 2 months ago

I think Thomas Robinson is going to be a beast... I would love to get that kid

Lin Rahardja 14 years, 2 months ago

Hope we get all three Dominic Cheek, John Wall and Xavier Henry. Together with current recruits, these super frehmen can help us make a run at another championship. Why not?

jaybate 14 years, 2 months ago

Dear Coach Self,Keep Late Night's date the same.But go back to starting it at midnight.Let the Late Night Special/Shine its ever lovin' light on you.

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