Blog Entry

Kansas ready for big game -- in September

Posted on: August 24, 2011 10:30 am
Edited on: August 24, 2011 11:04 am

By Matt Norlander

The lockout at basketball's professional level is providing an ironic twist that usually goes the other way. Right now, the NBA's loss is college basketball's gain. Kansas hoops is about to take advantage of the work stoppage and give its fans a rare treat, similar to what Kentucky did recently.

Being that Kansas football has a bye the weekend of Sept. 24, Bill Self and the basketball program are taking advantage of an available fall Saturday in Lawrence.

Former Kansas players and coaches will participate in an exhibition game at Allen Fieldhouse. It's being billed as the Legends of the Phog game. I like it. I like it a lot.
Former KU coaches Larry Brown and Ted Owens will coach a collection of former KU players who have been part of three NCAA titles, 54 conference championships, 13 Final Fours and 2,038 all-time victories. The rosters will include many current NBA Jayhawks, including NBA All-Star Paul Pierce, as well as many other recent KU standouts.

“It’s going to be a spectacular event,” Self said in a statement. ”Not very often can you spin a negative into a positive but we get an opportunity to do so with the NBA lockout. There have been numerous times we’d like to get all these guys back at the same time, but it’s always been hard for the current NBA players to come back because their schedules run similar to ours."

Paul Pierce is the big name, of course, but who else could we see? Well, Cole Aldrich, Mario Chalmers, Darrell Arthur, Nick Collison, Kirk Hinrich, Drew Gooden and Julian Wright are all former 'Hawks who make a wage in the Association. None of those were named in the press release, but it does state a good number of NBAers will play, so I think it's fair to expect a decent portion of the names above to make their way to Lawrence that weekend.

I want Scott Pollard more than anyone, though. Make that happen, Kansas. His appearance at last year's Midnight Madness was epic and went tragically underreported. For all I care Pollard can be the ebullient official making Larry Brown's life hell for an afternoon.

The game is being held for a good cause with a tragic twist, though. A majority of the proceeds will go to the family and a fund-to-be-determined in honor of former Kansas basketball assistant Neil Dougherty. Dougherty died this summer of a heart attack. Other monies will go to the local Boys & Girls Club.

Tickets go on sale soon for $20, which isn't so bad. I wouldn't be surprised if the event nearly sold out.

Photo: AP
Category: NCAAB

Since: Oct 30, 2006
Posted on: August 26, 2011 12:11 pm

Kansas ready for big game -- in September

I agree, Matt is late again with this story..He knows just like every other sports writer out there knows that Kentucky as pulled this off two nights in a row. The first night in Lexington Ky, selling out Rupp Arena, and then doing the un-heard of thing in college sports. Going to one of your biggest rivals home town and using their new Arena, and once again damn near selling that place out too in your biggest Rivals city....Well over 40,000 fans in two nights, in the middle of August came out to see and watch kentucky basketball play...Its my guess that Matt knew all about this, but He, and like so many others in his profession denies Kentucky Sports the respect, and the pat on the back they deserve....not only here at CBSS, but ESPN, and the rest..jmho

Since: Sep 25, 2010
Posted on: August 25, 2011 3:57 pm

Kansas ready for big game -- in September

Sorry Matt, you should  have jumped on this when it was Kentucky. Now you are a day late and a dollar short. It is nice to see the proceeds going to the family of Mr. Dougherty.

Since: Mar 3, 2008
Posted on: August 25, 2011 12:42 pm

Kansas ready for big game -- in September

Way to go Kansas!  Only a month behind Kentucky!

Since: Jan 17, 2008
Posted on: August 25, 2011 12:36 pm

Kansas ready for big game -- in September

Compare the 2 rosters. UK NBA guys Vs Kansas NBA guys. Who do you give the edge to? My vote would be of course UK, Rondo, and Wall is all I really need to name. Beats Cole Aldrich and Mario Chalmers.

Any thoughts???

Since: Feb 8, 2007
Posted on: August 25, 2011 2:51 am

Kansas ready for big game -- in September

You know what's funny,

Kentucky did this, twice actually! once in rupp arena which sold out 24000, and another the very next day at rival Louisville's Yum center and sold about 18000.

But i never saw it talked about in national media.

Now Kansas comes along and pop, here's an article, as there should be.

This is great, i'm happy for Kansas, and interested to see how many fans show up, but it just goes to show more media hate on Kentucky because there was never an article when Kentucky did it, and they did it first.

Then This guy Matt Norlander, links an article by Jerry Tipton, who is much hated by the Kentucky fan base, and tries every bit he can to put down UK, Even in that article you see he says attendence was 15000, which is was much closer to 18000.

anyway, end rant.        

Since: Dec 5, 2006
Posted on: August 25, 2011 1:02 am

Kansas ready for big game -- in September

I feel I need to give Kansas its due. Bringing back Paul Pierce is huge considering his absence since 2003 from the campus. Of course the schedule has conspired against NBA players getting back but I read that a number of them have been living in Lawrence this summer and working out on campus whole they wait for the NBPA to get their heads . . . well, you know.

The return to play again in historic Allen Field House (is this the most venerable arena in the country?) is a huge lure for Pollard and Simien (both retired) and Chalmers, Collison, Hinrich, Gooden, Xavier Henry, Wright and Aldridge to again run the floor and hear the cheers. Kansas is saying they intend to sell out the arena. They probably will. To get twenty or so current and former pro players together for a game is great fun. A few other schools can probably pull this off as well so they will be watching. Get your popcorn ready - are they televising this game? It will be a shame if ESPN doesn't get busy and show up.

Since: Aug 17, 2011
Posted on: August 24, 2011 4:10 pm

Kansas ready for big game -- in September

I hope Kansas can make it happen and not be bogged down in NCAA issues like UK had to do.  It was a damn shame that the NCAA stepped in to block an event that celebrated former NCAA players.  Kansas is one of the 3 NCAA teams that has the NBA prowess to pull this off.  

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