Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Jeff Withey finds goaltending rule ‘weird’


— Kansas University senior center Jeff Withey wasn’t a fan of the international basketball rules regarding goaltending when he played in Europe last summer during an exhibition tour with Athletes in Action.

“For a big, I think that’s a little weird. If it’s hanging on the rim, you can knock it off or dunk it,” Withey said. “(I’m) just trying to make that a conscious effort to remember, if it is hanging on the rim, to go up and get it.”

Try as he might, 7-footer Withey said he never interfered with a ball above the basket last year during eight games overseas.

“When you’re playing, you’re so used to these rules,” Withey said. “But I’ve definitely seen a lot of Europeans do it. It definitely makes you mad, because you’re like, ‘Come on.’”

Sophomore point guard Naadir Tharpe agreed that the goaltending rule would be the most significant change KU would face during the Jayhawks’ four exhibition games. KU opens with a noon (U.S. Central time) game against the Swiss National Team today in Fribourg.

“Everybody’s going to be looking like, ‘What the heck is going on?’” Tharpe said. “But that’s the way it’s played.

“It’s regular basketball. It’s still the same game. You’ve still got to put the ball in the hoop. We all know what to do.”

The Jayhawks also scrimmaged with an international basketball Saturday to try to get used to it prior to its tour.

“If it’s brand new, it’s very slippery and it’s really hard to play with. The one we were playing with (Saturday) was broken in. Those feel like normal,” Withey said. “If they’re broken in, they’re fine.”

KU freshman guard Andrew White said he’d been shooting with the new ball over the last week.

“No excuses,” White said. “We’re going to get out there, and we’re going to play with whatever they give us. It’s a little different, but we’ll adjust to it.”

A few of the trip’s other rules changes include: 10-minute quarters; 24-second shot clocks; eight-second half-court violations; five-second allowance for free throws; and extended trapezoid lanes.

Travel talk: Before his team left for Europe, Withey said he was looking forward to experiencing different cultures.

“I’ve been over to Europe a couple of times, but every time I’ve been, I’ve been stuck in a hotel and just playing basketball,” Withey said. “Coach (Self) has told us we’re going to be able to go out and sightsee, experience everything. I’m definitely looking forward to that. I’m going with all my best friends, so that’s going to be a good time.”

Withey mentioned the Eiffel Tower in Paris as one of the sites he most wanted to visit. The Jayhawks will head from Zurich to Paris on Thursday courtesy of high-speed rail.

“I heard the food is a little weird,” Withey said of France, “but I might try a snail or something like that.”

Today’s game: Today’s KU-Swiss National team game will not be televised. It is not available on radio. The Journal-World will have a live blog of the game available at The game is supposed to tip off at noon Central time. That’s 7 p.m. in Switzerland.


Priest Fontaine 10 years, 1 month ago

kusports should run a mobile app on the Mobile Roadie platform. It's super easy to Lifestream for all the app users. No one else is broadcasting these games, it's a huge opportunity for kusports.

Plus, the guy that started the company is a KU alumni (Brock Batten)...

cmottinger 10 years, 1 month ago

I took your post here as a good initiative. I just tweeted at Brock Batten. Maybe he will consider approaching KU. I know Thomas Robinson was wanting to watch the game too

nuleafjhawk 10 years, 1 month ago

Can Withey GET up high enough to knock it off the rim, or dunk it ???

Oh, lighten up - - seriously though, I hope he's more aggressive around the rim this year - at his size, some thunder dunks are much preferred to Chenowithian layups and finger-rolls.

jgkojak 10 years, 1 month ago

They are probably not streaming it live because 1) the KU team would prefer to not have their less-than-best training games shown 2) the European teams may have contracts/rules which need to be honored regarding broadcasting, etc. 3) how much are you REALLY going to see from his i-phone on the sideline in an arena not lit for broadcast?

Now, I'd be all for some video of highlights, just to get a feel - but again, there are probably restrictions.

Rob Wempe 10 years, 1 month ago

I could be wrong, but isn't against NCAA rules to televise these games? I heard they believe that would give a team an advantage in recruiting since recruits would be able to watch one team and not another.

Ian Emerson 10 years, 1 month ago

Considering that the season officially hasn't started yet I would say that it would be against NCAA rules to broadcast this nationally

Martin Rosenblum 10 years, 1 month ago

So, photos of Mars seem to be easier to get than anything from Switzerland! Maybe the next foriegn exhibition game should be on Mars.

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