Stories for August 2009


Monday, August 31

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KU brings Sayers back to his alma mater

Former Kansas University football player Gale Sayers will join the KU athletic department in October, serving as Director of Fundraising for Special Projects.

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Crimson and blue Bud Light cans make appearance on Lawrence liquor store shelves

Crimson and blue Bud Light cans on the shelves of Lawrence liquor stores have Kansas University officials seeing red.

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Youthful praise

Mangino impressed with freshmen Opurum, McDougald

Kansas football coach Mark Mangino continued his praise for true freshmen Toben Opurum and Bradley McDougald during the Big 12 teleconference Monday morning.

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Second chance

Defensive coordinator learned from Year 1

Clint Bowen says he learned plenty in his first season as Kansas' defensive coordinator.

KU soccer claims tourney title

Kansas University freshman Shelby Williamson scored early in the second half in the Jayhawks’ 1-0 soccer victory over Arizona State on Sunday at the Lady Vol Classic.

KU volleyball players on all-tourney team

Kansas University junior Karina Garlington and sophomore Allison Mayfield were named to the Middle Tennessee State University Invitational All-Tournament Team.

Sunday, August 30

Kansas volleyball wins two

Jayhawks defeat Xavier, Murray St.

Kansas University’s volleyball team defeated Xavier, 3-1, and Murray State, 3-0, on Saturday at the Middle Tennessee State University Invitational.

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Twin transformation

Morris brothers add weight, confidence for soph seasons

Beaten down physically and drained emotionally after a marathon freshman basketball season, Kansas University’s Morris twins staggered into strength coach Andrea Hudy’s office last March.

Saturday, August 29

KU football releases updated depth chart

Thorson’s boost highlights changes

The Kansas football team released an updated depth chart Saturday, one week before the season-opener against Northern Colorado.

KU soccer wins, 2-1

Emily Cressy scored the game-winning goal and added an assist, while goalkeeper Kat Liebetrau made five saves in Kansas University’s 2-1 soccer victory over Pepperdine on Friday in the first match of the Lady Vol Invitational at Regal Soccer Stadium.

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Now and then

Can Jayhawk defense invoke nastiness of teams past?

Kansas coach Mark Mangino used the word “hostile” to describe the atmosphere he would like fans to create for visiting teams at Memorial Stadium. Mangino no doubt has used that word or similar ones when talking to his defense about what he would like visiting offenses to feel coming from across the line.

Kansas volleyball falls in opener

Karina Garlington had 12 kills but the Kansas University volleyball team fell, 3-1 (25-16, 18-25, 25-19, 25-18) to Middle Tennessee State in both teams’ season opener in the MTSU Invitational on Friday.

Friday, August 28

Reesing makes guest appearance on TV show

While “Sparky” seems to have served him well over a four-year Kansas University football career, quarterback Todd Reesing won’t be taking the nickname with him when he begins his post-collegiate work as a disc jockey.

Woolridge’s coach doesn’t buy recruit’s ranking

Royce Woolridge isn’t the only person shaking his head over his drop in the national high school basketball recruiting rankings.

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Youth movement

KU offensive line relying on plethora of fresh faces

The Kansas University football team returns only 25 career starts on the offensive line — the least in the Big 12 and tied for fifth-lowest in Division I, according to a Wall Street Journal study. Tanner Hawkinson still doesn’t believe there’s reason to be concerned.

List needs history lesson

To kick off the college football season, USA Today has compiled a list of what it considers “golden years” for all 120 programs in the NCAA’s Bowl Subdivision. Kansas, of course, is nowhere near the Valhalla level of Oklahoma, Texas and Nebraska but it gets short-changed by the USA-T choice of the KU high point.

Thursday, August 27

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KU students can join new Junior Williams Fund to begin earning priority points for athletic events

Kansas University students can start earning priority points for better seating at KU athletic events once they graduate — and at a much cheaper rate.

KU football loses two players

Kansas University football players Jose Rodriguez and Chris Heinz are no longer with the program, a university spokesman said Thursday.

Practice provides glimpses

Threatening weather forecasts kept many away, so those who attended Fan Appreciation Day at Memorial Stadium generally were folks who spend a lot of time thinking about the upcoming Kansas University football season filled with promise.

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Basketball players relishing new space

Kansas University’s new basketball practice facility is quite a sight.

Hoops recruit Barnes to visit North Carolina

Harrison Barnes, a 6-foot-6 small forward from Ames (Iowa) High, will visit the University of North Carolina over Labor Day weekend on an official recruiting trip, the Des Moines Register reports.

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Up close and personal

Jayhawks mingle during Fan Appreciation Day

The lasting image to come from the Kansas University football team’s Fan Appreciation Day wasn’t coach Mark Mangino’s urging of fans to make Memorial Stadium a “hostile” place this fall. It wasn’t the shenanigans of an unusually feisty Baby Jay or one fan’s Todd Reesing action figure (complete with yellow Livestrong bracelet).

KU volleyball team hoping to get back on track

Progress is often measured in picas in women’s volleyball. No one knows that more than Kansas University coach Ray Bechard.

Wednesday, August 26

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Stuckey, by the book

KU safety always stood out on, off field

Darrell Stuckey's mom and those who saw him grow up recall an athlete who stood out as a person, too.

KU softball adds assistant coach

Alycia Bachkora has joined Kansas University’s softball staff as an assistant coach to head coach Megan Smith.

Kansas must start 6-0

A 6-0 start would generate some national noise.

Virginia prep Lamb to visit for Late Night

Doron Lamb, a 6-foot-4 senior shooting guard from Oak Hill Academy in Mouth of Wilson, Va., will make an official recruiting visit to Kansas University for the Oct. 16 Late Night in the Phog, reports.

Tuesday, August 25

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Thrill of the chase

Junior DE Laptad key for Jayhawks’ pass rush

When Kansas University defensive end Jake Laptad plays video games in his spare time, his team of choice is the Kansas City Chiefs.

Self lauds new KU basketball practice facility

Kansas University’s new basketball practice facility is open for business.

KU fans abuzz over seats

Lately I’ve been running into people who ask good-naturedly if I’m going to cough up $15,000 for a press-row seat in Allen Fieldhouse. Yuk, yuk.

Monday, August 24

Former Nebraska running back convicted of murder

Former Nebraska running back Thunder Collins was convicted Monday of first-degree murder and other charges stemming from a September 2008 shooting in Omaha that left one man dead and another seriously wounded. The Douglas County jury also found the former Cornhuskers player guilty of attempted second-degree murder and two weapons counts. He faces a mandatory sentence of life in prison for the first-degree murder conviction.

Report: Heat's Beasley checks into rehab facility

Michael Beasley told his personal manager several days ago that he was working out in Houston because it brought "a change of scenery" from Miami and Washington. What happened next is a mystery, even to those who know Beasley best. The Miami Heat forward checked into a Houston rehabilitation facility last week and is being treated for various issues, including depression, a person briefed on the situation told The Associated Press on Monday. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because of privacy concerns, and could not say whether the other issues included drug or alcohol treatment.

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The more things change …

The Jayhawks’ football program has been turned around, but players say coach Mark Mangino has remained the same

Kansas University football players say coach Mark Mangino hasn't changed much, though the program sure has.

Walk-on deserves credit

Walk-on Chris Heinz deserves credit for helping to make Kansas University's football team better.

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KU recruit tumbles in rankings

Why the hate? Phoenix prep Woolridge shrugs off lack of respect

Kansas University basketball recruit Royce Woolridge has fallen from No. 93 to No. 117 in's national rankings.

Kansas soccer wins opener

Kansas opened its soccer season with a 2-0 victory over Drake.

Sunday, August 23

KU volleyball tops alumni

The Kansas University volleyball team defeated the KU alumni in its first action of the 2009 season, 3-0 (25-13, 25-17, 25-13), on Saturday night at Horejsi Center.

Czyz’s decision pays off

He was without doubt the greatest closer in Kansas University baseball history.

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Depth perception

Pick’s goal: play second fiddle to Reesing

There generally isn’t a lot of middle ground for the backup quarterback: Usually, he’s either the first or the last person fans want to see. Toiling to play his way into that football purgatory for Kansas University is Kale Pick, a 6-foot-2, 200-pound red-shirt freshman from Dodge City.

Thompson tied for 31st

Former Kansas University golfer Chris Thompson is in a tie for 31st place entering the final round of the Christmas In October Nationwide golf tournament at Nicklaus Golf Club at LionGate.

Saturday, August 22

KU football ranked 25th in preseason AP poll

The Kansas football team is ranked No. 25 in the preseason Associated Press Top 25 poll released Saturday.

No. 1 doubles team solid

Despite a 3-0 start last year, Kansas University’s women’s tennis team struggled throughout the 2008-2009 season against ranked opponents and fierce Big 12 competition. The Jayhawks ended their season with a 10-13 overall record and a 4-8 record in the Big 12.

Return of whole roster has O’Neil optimistic

Seniors Powers, Gockel expected to lead way, but should be pushed by juniors Bal, Thiry, Clark, Wilson, Rainbolt

Expectations are high for the Kansas University women’s golf team this season, as head coach Erin O’Neil returns nine golfers from last year’s roster and hopes that her team’s savvy will lead the Jayhawks to new heights during 2009-10.

Barbee back to lead young squad

If there’s one thing Kansas University men’s golf coach Kit Grove has learned during his time at KU, it has been how to lean on his team’s young talent.

Swimming expects ‘interesting’ year

Hammered by the graduation of nine seniors, coach Campbell reloads with whopping 13 newcomers

In 18 seasons of college coaching, Kansas University women’s swimming and diving coach Clark Campbell never has seen anything quite like this.

Runners benefit from experience

Redwine: Track, cross country teams have high expectations

In 2008, the University of Kansas men’s and women’s cross country team earned a pair of eighth-place finishes in the Big 12 Championships and eighth- and seventh-place finishes, respectively, in the NCAA Midwest Regionals.

Rowing eyes Big 12 crown

Jayhawks say new boathouse to make ‘big difference in the program’

With a new boathouse and dreams of winning a Big 12 Conference championship, the Kansas University rowing team is more excited than ever. Last spring marked the first-ever Big 12 tournament for women’s rowing.

Collison defends tweets

Former Kansas University basketball standout Nick Collison is embroiled in a silly, head-scratching controversy in Oklahoma City — home of Collison’s Oklahoma City Thunder NBA team.

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KU’s Self not fazed by Memphis ruling

A day after the NCAA ruled to vacate each of the Memphis men’s basketball team’s 38 victories during the 2007-08 season due to the use of an ineligible player, Kansas University coach Bill Self offered his take on the ordeal during Friday’s KU Football Kickoff at Corinth Square.

KU partners with Career Athletes

Kansas Athletics and Career Athletes have recently agreed to a partnership providing KU’s athletes a truly unique resource for career development.

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Focused and ready

Jake Sharp is finally the undisputed No. 1 RB for the Jayhawks

Jake Sharp is locked in. There’s no doubting that, as the running back sits in a padded chair, surrounded by reporters at Kansas University’s media day. He looks straight ahead, as if zeroing in on a target, and rarely blinks.

Friday, August 21

Softball returns ‘good talent’

Megan Smith didn’t find an empty cupboard when she took over Kansas University’s softball program in July.

Stories to follow in 2009

Odds and ends while daydreaming about the Kansas football team meeting Oklahoma here after a 6-0 start, including Big 12 victories over Iowa State and Colorado:

Volleyball shoots for top-half finish

Head coach Ray Bechard’s favorite memory of the 2008 Kansas volleyball season was senior night. Facing a tough Baylor team with a better record and some hard hitters, Kansas rallied to take the match in four sets.

Soccer squad experienced

Francis expects eight freshmen to push returning veterans

As the winningest soccer coach in Kansas University history, Mark Francis enters his 11th season of coaching with a squad full of potential.

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KU sells courtside basketball seats for $15,000 each

For decades, it was said the media had the best seats in Allen Fieldhouse. No more.

McCray on Wooden list

Kansas senior All-American Danielle McCray was named a preseason candidate for the 2009-10 women’s basketball John R. Wooden Award on Thursday.

Baseball seeks consistency

Third baseman Thompson coming off big year

Last season, the Kansas University baseball team’s objective was to put a bit of swagger back into the program. Having done that — and then some — during a surprisingly successful 2009 campaign, the team’s challenge now will be to maintain it.

Title would have been vacated

Let’s pretend for a moment Mario Chalmers missed a late three-pointer and KU lost the 2008 national championship game to Memphis. Would KU have been deemed national champion Thursday, following the NCAAs ruling that Memphis must forfeit all its games in 2007-08 for using an ineligible player?

Stadium renovations in exploratory phase

Possible plans to carry out considerable renovations to the east side of Kansas University’s Memorial Stadium are still in the “exploratory phase,” KU associate athletic director Jim Marchiony said Thursday.

Football Kickoff on tap

Kansas chancellor Bernadette Gray-Little, football coach Mark Mangino and women’s basketball coach Bonnie Henrickson will speak at the fourth annual KU Football Kickoff from 6:30 to 10 tonight at Corinth Square.

Royals release Metcalf

Former Kansas University baseball standout Travis Metcalf has been unconditionally released by the Kansas City Royals organization.

Thursday, August 20

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Bucs’ CB Talib arrested for allegedly hitting cabbie

Tampa Bay cornerback Aqib Talib was held out of practice Thursday after police say he punched a taxi driver and was jailed on charges of simple battery and resisting arrest without violence.

NCAA announces Memphis will be required to forfeit 2007-08 victories

Final Four season to be lost

The NCAA has forced Memphis to give up its 38 victories from the Final Four season of 2007-08 under former coach John Calipari because of an ineligible player.

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Back on track?

Sophomore stats still tops for Thornton

Kansas University defensive back Justin Thornton, whose five interceptions tied future first-round NFL draft pick Aqib Talib for the team lead two seasons ago, stole just one pass his junior season.

Former city leadership settles in with KU athletics

Two longtime public servants are pleased to be continuing their careers in a different kind of arena. Debbie Van Saun and Frank Reeb, former co-workers at Lawrence City Hall, are back on the same team — this time with Kansas Athletics Inc.

Tharp mature freshman

Listening to Kansas University football coach Mark Mangino talk about the sort of training camp explosive true freshman wide receiver Bradley McDougald flashed makes it even easier to picture the Jayhawks featuring one of the nation’s most prolific offenses. Scoring points won’t be the problem. Preventing them is more of an iffy proposition.

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K-State guard Clemente drains remarkable H-O-R-S-E shot

The first few shots, over the backboard, the kneeling three-pointer, seemed plausible. Doubt crept in as the fullcourt jumpers swished in a little too easy. By the time Larry Bird and Michael Jordan started calling bank off the scoreboard and through windows, well, there wasn’t much question the shots were made in the editing room, not on the court.

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KU's Aldrich ready for junior season

Cole Aldrich, who is expected to vie for college basketball player of the year honors his junior season at Kansas University, hasn’t let any summertime hype go to his head.

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Dugan Arnett’s KU football notebook

After a short hiatus, Kansas University senior Justin Thornton will return to the position in which he thrived during the Jayhawks’ 2007 Orange Bowl season.

Wednesday, August 19

Mangino raves about true freshman McDougald

Less than two weeks after the start of summer training camp, Kansas coach Mark Mangino indicated that Bradley McDougald would not only contribute as a true freshman this season, but that the Dublin, Ohio, native has performed better than any true freshman he's had in the program

Collins, Aldrich named as candidates for Wooden Award

Jayhawk duo included on list of 50 college players

Cole Aldrich and Sherron Collins are two of 50 candidates for the Wooden Player of the Year trophy.

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Warrior mentalities

Henry brothers, molded by family, eager to start at KU

Wherever Xavier Henry goes, so does one of his most prized possessions — his wooden necklace. “It’s a warrior necklace. I got one for me and my brother. It just represents us. Me and my brother are warriors,” Henry, Kansas University’s 6-foot-6, 220-pound freshman basketball guard from Oklahoma City said Tuesday.

Hoops expectations at upper limits

Return of Collins, Aldrich, addition of Henry has KU Final Four favorite

Blessed with talent and depth at every position — and valuable experience at the ever-important point guard slot — Kansas University’s basketball team enters the 2009-10 preseason with the highest hopes. And the greatest expectations.

Self giddy over ‘premier’ newcomer class

Henrys, Johnson, Robinson, Withey project as a fabulous five

Bill Self won’t complain if anybody wants to nickname his incoming class of recruits the “Fab Five.” He’s awfully fond of the handful of guys he and assistants Joe Dooley, Danny Manning and Kurtis Townsend were able to corral.

McCray’s emergence sparks optimism

Around mid-October of last year when basketball practice was about to begin, Kansas women’s coach Bonnie Henrickson was asked about Danielle McCray. Said Henrickson of the 5-foot-11 junior: “Danielle has to step up and be a leader.” Did she ever.

C.J.’s impact a mystery

We know what Carl Henry thinks of his son C.J.’s game. Carl said he thinks Sherron Collins and Tyshawn Taylor are good basketball players, but not any better than C.J. “You said my dad said that?” C.J. asked Tuesday afternoon.

Kansas baseball loses signee

Ritch Price figured pitcher Shawn Blackwell was signed, sealed and all but delivered to Kansas University.

Kansas golf hires assistant

John Handrigan was named Kansas men’s golf assistant coach on Tuesday.

Jayhawk volleyball scrimmage on tap

The Kansas volleyball team will play an exhibition scrimmage against KU alumni on Saturday at Horejsi Family Athletics Center. Admission to the 6:30 p.m. event is free.

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Woods looks to give KU pass rush some pop

Juco transfer a welcome addition on defensive line that struggled to get to QB last season

During the Kansas University football team’s annual Media Day, Quintin Woods was asked how the first few days of practice were going, and in response, the defensive end from Flint, Mich., said, “It’s been tough. Coach’s working us, but it’s for the (good) of our team. We’re just taking it one day at a time, going out there and giving everybody our all, working hard in drills, working hard in practice, soaking everything up, and it’s been good.”

Tuesday, August 18

Stuckey named to Nagurski watch list

Kansas University safety Darrell Stuckey was named to the preseason watch list for the Bronko Nagurski Award on Tuesday, the fourth time this preseason the senior from Kansas City, Kan., has been tapped as a candidate for a national award.

KU basketball will be a part of ESPN's College GameDay ... in Manhattan

The Kansas men's basketball team will be a part of ESPN's College GameDay when the team travels to face Kansas State on Jan. 30 in Manhattan, ESPN announced Tuesday.

UTEP to provide challenge on road

———— Jayhawks hope to avoid repeat of last year’s loss to South Florida

A year ago, the Kansas University football team’s lone nonconference road game ended in a last-second loss to South Florida on a balmy Friday night in Tampa. Entering the 2009 season, the Jayhawks are hoping this year’s early-season road trip — to El Paso, Texas, for a Sept. 12 matchup with UTEP — goes a little better.

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Brutal slate awaits: Big Three in South on KU’s schedule

If the Kansas University football team is to win its first outright Big 12 North title this season, the Jayhawks will have to make history with a brutal conference schedule ahead of them.

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Self ‘fired up,’ furry for Traditions Night

Bill Self insists he wasn’t trying to start a new tradition during Kansas University Traditions Night festivities Monday night at Memorial Stadium. Self, Kansas University’s seventh-year basketball coach, showed up for his guest-speaker stint sporting a brand-new beard.

For Kansas, the sky’s the limit

A year from now, sports talk revolving around Kansas University’s most high-profile teams will center on all the stars that coaches will need to try to replace. Lucky for you, it’s not a year from now, it’s now and this has the potential to become a perfect-storm of a year that could result in big winning seasons for KU’s football, basketball, women’s basketball and baseball teams.

Kansas bowl history

Filling linebacker void could be key

Graduation of LB trio of Holt, Rivera, Mortensen leaves Jayhawks’ defense with gaping hole

Goodbye 105 tackles, 10 sacks and six forced fumbles. So long 93 tackles — eight for loss — and four forced fumbles. And sayonara, too, to 90 tackles, two sacks and nine quarterback hurries.

Dugan Arnett’s KU football notebook

Kansas University quarterback Todd Reesing, already a member of four national award watch lists, was named to another Monday when he joined 37 other college signal-callers up for the Manning Award.

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KU end is all business

Senior Onyegbule hopes to crack starting lineup

Maxwell Onyegbule hopes this is the year he breaks into Kansas University's starting football lineup.

High-flying offense should continue

The Kansas University football team’s offense left little to be desired during a 2008 season in which it finished among the most potent in the nation.

How well do you know KU sports?

This is the fourth in a series of quizzes about Kansas University. Today’s focus is sports. See the answers at the end of the quiz.

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To meet fan, alumni expectations, KU Athletics commits to fieldhouse matters

Sure, brothers C.J. and Xavier Henry will play for their parents’ alma mater this fall, more than two decades after mom and dad each suited up for the Jayhawks. The incoming basketball brothers also will be among the thousands of crimson-and-blue players, staffers, fans and others who will be stepping into the next generation of Allen Fieldhouse: a basketball building long revered for its history but one quickly becoming home to the latest in technology, comfort and competition.

Monday, August 17

Reesing earns Manning Award watch list nod

Kansas University quarterback Todd Reesing, already a member of three national quarterback award watch lists, was named to another Monday when the Manning Award made him one of the 38 college signal-callers vying for the honor.

Band Day to skip parade this year

Bands from 25 Kansas high schools will converge on Memorial Stadium Sept. 26 for Kansas University’s football game against Southern Mississippi.

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Two-way threat?

Daymond Patterson might get a shot at receiver again, but first he has to prove he can be a lock-down cornerback.

Rookies impress Briscoe

Dezmon Briscoe likes what he has seen from Kansas University's new wide receiver candidates.

Blue tops Crimson in KU soccer exhibition

Shannon McCabe and Whitney Berry scored goals, and Emily Cressy added an assist in the Kansas University Blue Team’s 2-0 soccer victory over the Crimson squad in an intrasquad game.

Sunday, August 16

KU men’s basketball roster updated

Kansas University has updated its 2009-10 men’s basketball roster on the official Web site.

Pitino won’t be punished

Questions begging to be answered ...

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KU linebacker spots still up for grabs

When last year’s starting linebackers — Mike Rivera, Joe Mortensen and James Holt — all exhausted their Kansas University football eligibility, they left behind a legacy, but no definite replacements. And as the Jayhawks prepare for the 2009 season, competition for the position is still open.

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KU unveils renovated Jayhawker Towers

As cars, pickup trucks and U-Hauls pulled up to Jayhawker Towers on Friday crammed with furniture and other belongings, Stephanie Chase took a break from moving to look at her newly renovated apartment.

Saturday, August 15

KU basketball lands in-home with Payne

Kansas University has set up a Sept. 14 in-home recruiting visit with Adreian Payne, a 6-foot-10 senior center from Jefferson High in Dayton, Ohio, according to

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Ready to rumble

Rookie Opurum getting up to speed

Freshman running back Toben Opurum is getting a handle on things as Kansas University's football team rolls toward its season opener.

Friday, August 14

Reesing, Briscoe named to Maxwell Award watch list

Senior quarterback Todd Reesing and junior receiver Dezmon Briscoe were both named Friday to the 55-member watch list for the Maxwell Award, given annually to college football's most outstanding player.

KU plans Band Day for Sept. 26

Bands from 25 Kansas high schools will converge on Memorial Stadium Sept. 26 for Kansas University’s football game against Southern Mississippi.

Woodling's Word to the Wise: Manhattan

Just 90 minutes from Lawrence, Kansas State’s home has always been an in-and-out destination, although I remember eating at the Hibachi Hut in Aggieville many years ago.

Woodling's Word to the Wise: Columbia, Mo.

Always the most dreaded trip of the year. Why? Because you have to drive to the home of Missouri University on I-70.

Woodling's Word to the Wise: Norman, Okla.

Honestly, I’ve never done anything in Norman but cover football and men’s basketball games. I’m sure Norman is full of wonderful places to visit and terrific eateries, but Oklahoma City is about 20 minutes north and Oklahoma City has Bricktown.

Woodling's Word to the Wise: Stillwater, Okla.

During the summer in Oklahoma, rare is a day when you don’t see someone wearing an Eskimo Joe’s T-shirt.

Woodling's Word to the Wise: Lincoln, Neb.

Year after year when headed for games at Nebraska University, we would stay at the Lamplighter Motel because it was the only motel in the south part of town. We called it the State Pen Inn because it was located across the street from a Nebraska correctional facility.

Woodling's Word to the Wise: Ames, Iowa

There’s little doubt Hickory Park Restaurant is the iconic eatery in the home of Iowa State University. But I’ve been there only once or twice, mainly because I prefer to stay 30 miles or so miles south in Des Moines.

Woodling's Word to the Wise: Boulder, Colo.

Rare were the times I stayed in a motel in Boulder. Why stay at the home of Colorado University when Denver has so much to offer? And with the new — but expensive — turnpike from the Denver airport to Boulder, the trip now takes only about 40 minutes.

Woodling's Word to the Wise: Austin, Texas

As far as I know, the state capital of Texas is still booming. It seems like every time I was there, I drove through road construction. And, even if all that road work is over, I’m sure Austin still has a traffic problem, particularly on the inadequate stretch of I-35 that runs near the UT campus.

Woodling's Word to the Wise: Lubbock, Texas

You do not go to the home of Texas Tech University without having your picture taken next to the Buddy Holly statue. You just don’t.

Woodling's Word to the Wise: College Station, Texas

High air fares preclude flying into the Bryan-College Station aerodrome so we usually flew to Houston Bush Airport and made the drive — a little more than an hour and a half — to the home of Texas A&M.

Woodling's Word to the Wise: Waco, Texas

How do you get to Waco? Let me count the ways.

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Towering titan

Hawkinson beefs up in vital move to left tackle

The plump kid with the curly hair was sitting in the back of the room, talking about food. This was Tuesday, and Tanner Hawkinson, the newly minted left tackle for the Kansas University football team, was explaining how, exactly, a recently lean college freshman had managed to transform himself into a nearly 290-pound titan.

Jayhawk pioneers deserving

Next time the sports masterminds at Kansas University turn out a football media guide, they should correct an error on page 184 of the current brochure. It does an injustice to two Jayhawks who deserve big-time credit for their roles in integrating the modern KU program.

Thursday, August 13

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Henrickson signs three-year extension

Kansas women's basketball coach has signed a three-year extension, meaning her agreement with KU now extends through the 2013-14 season. Bonnie Henrickson has signed on for three more years as women’s basketball coach at Kansas University.

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Surprise attack

Wilson has quietly earned confidence of his teammates

In his sophomore season, wide receiver Johnathan Wilson was voted “Biggest Surprise” by his Kansas University teammates. He went on to start in 12 of the Jayhawks’ 13 games, racking up 43 receptions for 573 yards and three touchdowns.

Wednesday, August 12

FOX Sports to air KU football preview

FOX Sports Midwest and Fox Sports Kansas City will air a preview of the Kansas University football team's 2009 season throughout August, the school announced Wednesday.

Briscoe, Meier named to Biletnikoff list

Kansas University receivers Dezmon Briscoe and Kerry Meier were among the 37 players named this week to the watch list for the Biletnikoff Award, given annually to the nation's top receiver.

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Lesson learned

Exile over, Briscoe appreciates ‘privilege'

Dezmon Briscoe says he appreciates his role more now that he spent some time away from it.

Reesing positive leader

Todd Reesing has proven himself a true leader.

Wichita prep Perry Ellis to visit Memphis

Wichita Heights High School sophomore forward Perry Ellis has decided to attend Midnight Madness at Memphis.

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Dugan Arnett’s KU football notebook

Freshman Huldon Tharp might start at linebacker, KU coach Mark Mangino confirmed.

Tuesday, August 11

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Prince seeking more than $6M

Accusing Kansas State of “wanton and malicious misconduct,” lawyers for former football coach Ron Prince asked for more than $6 million Monday and said it was the school, not Prince, who wanted a controversial contract to be confidential.

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KU’s Self eager to begin 2009-2010 campaign

Bill Self, who spent most of the month of July on the recruiting trail, is refreshed and ready for the 2009-10 school year to begin.

Monday, August 10

City considers bus shuttle for KU football game days

KU football fans would be able to pay $1 for a round-trip bus ticket connecting downtown and Memorial Stadium this season, under a plan up for approval Tuesday night by Lawrence city commissioners.

Tuesday's open KU football practice canceled

The Kansas University football team's Tuesday morning open practice at Memorial Stadium has been canceled due to the unavailability of Kivisto Field, the school announced Monday.

Calif. prep Turner to visit Late Night

Josiah Turner plans to visit Kansas for Late Night in the Phog.

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Holding out hope

Wide receiver Henry optimistic he’ll stick with Jets

Former Jayhawk Marcus Henry hopes to make the New York Jets' roster.

Sunday, August 9

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Making a difference

Jackson mingles with fans, athletes to benefit charity

A handful of spectators and competitors presented Darnell Jackson with donations to his favorite charity early Saturday morning near the Kansas River levee.

Saturday, August 8

Three preps tap Kansas women

Three Texas high schoolers have committed to Kansas University's women's basketball team.

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Kansas football gains 1, loses 1

Briscoe takes part in first practice; Lueken bolts program

Dezmon Briscoe is back, but Ben Lueken is gone from Kansas University's football team.

KU basketball makes offer to Portland native

KU has offered a men's basketball scholarship to Terrence Jones.

Kansas rowing taps assistant

George Jenkins has been hired as an assistant rowing coach at Kansas University.

Friday, August 7

KU's Briscoe practicing

Despite some previous uncertainty about his eligibility, Kansas University junior receiver Dezmon Briscoe took part in the team's first practice of the fall season Friday, according to the team's media relations department.

KU football's Lueken leaving program

Kansas University football player Ben Lueken, a red-shirt freshman who played in nine games for the Jayhawks last season, has left the program.

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Stuckey named to Thorpe watch list

Award given annually to nation's top defensive back

Kansas senior safety Darrell Stuckey was selected as one of 31 players on the Jim Thorpe Award Watch List that was announced earlier this week.

KU football not ranked in USA Today preseason coaches poll

The Kansas football team was not ranked in the preseason USA Today Coaches' Poll released Friday.

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Mending mistakes

Despite receptions record, Meier says he still can improve

After careful examination, Kerry Meier says 97 receptions in 2008 wasn’t enough.

KU could dominate in area

Talk about being blessed with a genie in a jug and the stopper in your hand: That’s the enviable status of the Kansas University athletic program as 2009-10 approaches.

6News Video: Local athlete cleared to play for KU women's team

Local athlete Tania Jackson was cleared to play basketball for Kansas University's women's basketball team. Jackson missed her senior season at Lawrence High School because of a knee injury.

Thursday, August 6

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Chalmers, Wright to return to K.C. for exhibition

Former Kansas University basketball players Mario Chalmers and Julian Wright will be playing an NBA exhibition game in Kansas City, Mo., this fall.

Recruit Mays commits to KU women's basketball program

Guard ranked 93rd-best player in ESPN HoopGurlz Hundred

Keena Mays, a 5-foot-7 guard from Arlington, Texas, verbally committed to the Kansas women's basketball team earlier this week, according to

6News Video: Chalmers reflects on rookie season in NBA

Mario Chalmers talks with Kevin Romary about his rookie season in the NBA. Chalmers was in Lawrence to host his first annual National Championship Classic golf tournament.

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Jackson returns to Lawrence to benefit youths

As an eighth grader, Darnell Jackson wasted a lot of time loitering in a park adjacent to the Boys and Girls Club of Oklahoma City. One day, the self-proclaimed troublemaker decided to swing open the doors of the club’s gymnasium.

Kansas University basketball notebook

ESPN’s Dick Vitale has tapped Kansas University’s basketball team preseason No. 1 in the country.

Wednesday, August 5

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Reesing for Heisman?

Would KU consider a campaign for its quarterback?

So here’s the thing about Kansas University quarterback Todd Reesing: The Jayhawks never really have had anyone like him.

Future Jayhawk wins triple jump gold

Kansas track and field signee Andrea Geubelle added another gold medal to her collection after a first-place finish at the 2009 USATF Junior Olympic Track and Field Championships in Greensboro, N.C.

Gary Bedore’s KU basketball notebook

Five members of Kansas University’s athletic department witnessed Monday night’s induction of former KU basketball coach Ted Owens into the Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame.

Tuesday, August 4

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KU's Sharp selected as candidate for Doak Walker Award

Kansas University running back Jake Sharp was selected as one of 45 preseason candidates for the 2009 Doak Walker Award, given each year to the nation's top running back.

Releford’s list at nine

Trevor Releford has narrowed his list of colleges to nine.

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Reed leads KU hoops weight exploits

Tyrel Reed has stood out among his Kansas basketball teammates at their summer weight-room sessions.

Track recruits shine

Two Kansas track recruits had good showings at the Pan American Junior Championships.

Monday, August 3

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KU's Reesing named to O'Brien watch list

Kansas University senior quarterback Todd Reesing has been named to the Davey O'Brien National Quarterback Watch List, the O'Brien selection committee announced Monday.

Prep receiver Terry picks KU

Following a confusing past few days, Blue Springs (Mo.) High receiver Keeston Terry told Monday that he has committed to play for the Kansas University football team.

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Former KU coach Owens prepares Hall speech

Ted Owens, who will be inducted into the Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame tonight in Oklahoma City, and then the Kansas Hall of Fame on Oct. 4 in Wichita — plans on thanking several individuals in sure-to-be-emotional acceptance speeches at both events.

More to Reesing, Mangino than football

It was in the middle of a Kansas University football practice last season when coach Mark Mangino wanted a word with Todd Reesing. As the coach pulled his quarterback aside, Reesing was prepared to discuss what plays he would call on the next practice drive.

KU golf's Rainbolt selected

Kansas University golfer Alyssa Rainbolt, a redshirt junior from Wichita, was selected as one of five 2009 Murray Scholars by a nationwide panel of sports journalists.

Sunday, August 2

Schmidt: Autograph craze out of control

It was 1970, at the College World Series, where I signed my first autograph. I’ll never forget it: Our Ohio University team had just beaten No. 1-ranked USC in game one, and I was asked to sign a ball on the way to our bus.

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KU men's basketball schedule finalized

Kansas University’s 2009-10 men’s basketball schedule has been finalized following Saturday’s release of the Basketball Hall of Fame Showcase matchups.

Saturday, August 1

Ex-UNC coach joining KU runners

Michael Whittlesey is joining the Kansas staff as assistant coach for cross country and middle distance/distance running, KU coach Stanley Redwine announced Friday.

Tom Keegan’s golf notebook

Many who have seen the 1980 film Caddyshack must wonder what it would be like to play a round of golf with comedian Bill Murray, who played Carl Spackler in the golf spoof.

KU football season tickets a hot item

Apparently, a dismal economic climate isn’t enough to dampen anticipation for the upcoming Kansas University football season.

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Off to a good start

Chalmers holds golf fundraiser at Alvamar

The first tee-shot of the inaugural National Championship Classic sailed far right and toward the trees, a slice if ever there was one, but in the eyes of the man responsible, things could have been much worse.

Current, former Jayhawks advance at Kansas Amateur

Kansas golfer Nate Barbee and former Jayhawk Andrew Storm both won two matches Friday at the Kansas Amateur at Kansas City Country Club to advance to the quarterfinal round.