Jayhawks to Host Eagles in Men's Basketball Tuesday

Nov. 17, 2008

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Defending NCAA Champion Kansas opened its 2008-09 season with a 71-56 win against UMKC in the first round of the O’Reilly Auto Parts CBE Classic on Sunday. After a day off, KU will now host Florida Gulf Coast on Tuesday, Nov. 18 at 8 p.m. in the second round of the event. The games will be televised on ESPNU. Kansas is 1-0 for the seventh straight year and won its 36th consecutive home opener in Allen Fieldhouse. Florida Gulf Coast will be opening its season at Allen Fieldhouse. FGCU was 10-21 last season.

2008 National Championship Banner Unveiling on Nov. 18

A fifth national championship banner honoring the 2008 Kansas NCAA title will be unveiled prior to the Florida Gulf Coast contest at approximately 7:45 p.m. (Central), Tuesday (Nov. 18). The banner will be hung at the north end of Allen Fieldhouse. Fans are encouraged to show up early for this ceremony. General admission tickets are still available for the contest via the KU ticket office at 785.864.3141, 800.34.HAWKS or kuathletics.com. Earlier this year, a 2008 Final Four banner was raised at the south end of Allen Fieldhouse during Late Night in the Phog.

About Kansas

Kansas is coming off a 71-56 win against UMKC in its season opener Sunday. Junior guard Sherron Collins paced the Jayhawks with 16 points, while freshman Markieff Morris added 15 rebounds, the most for a Jayhawk since Nick Collison had 21 in the 2003 NCAA championship game against Syracuse. Markieff had seven points for the game. Sophomore center Cole Aldrich scored 13 points with five rebounds and sophomore guard Tyrel Reed had 12 points and four rebounds for KU.

KU enters its 111th year of college basketball. Last season, KU won its 51st league title, most in NCAA Division I. The Jayhawks return eight letterwinners from last season’s 37-3 team, yet less than 20 percent of almost every statistical category.

About Florida Gulf Coast

Like KU and UMKC, Florida Gulf Coast is rebuilding. The Eagles lost 11 and return two letterwinners from last season’s 10-21 team, which tied for eighth in the Atlantic Sun Conference race with a 6-10 record. FGCU is led by lone senior guard Delvin Franklin who started 19 games with a 9.2 scoring average last year. He averaged 12.3 ppg in conference games. Sophomore forward Chad Lutkenhaus (1.3 ppg) is the other returning letterwinner for FGCU. Head coach Dave Balza has 12 newcomers on the team, including four junior college transfers. In its lone exhibition game, Florida Gulf Coast defeated NAIA Ave Maria 89-58 on Nov. 4. Four Eagles scored in double figures led by Franklin with 16 points. Junior guard Ben Vega had 14, while freshman guard Reggie Chambers had 11 and junior forward Kyle Marks added 12. Freshman forward Ed Rolax led the Eagles with nine rebounds for the game.

The Series

Kansas and Florida Gulf Coast are meeting for the first time in men’s basketball. KU has only faced one current member of the Atlantic Sun Conference. The Jayhawks are 3-0 against East Tennessee State with the last meeting in 1996, a KU 108-73 win in Allen Fieldhouse.

CBE Classic Notes & Schedule

The 2008 O’Reilly Auto Parts CBE Classic will feature four regional sites (Lawrence, Syracuse, N.Y., Gainesville, Fla., and Seattle, Wash.) and culminate with the championship rounds Nov. 24 and 25 at the Sprint Center in Kansas City, Mo. KU will face Washington on Nov. 24 and either Florida or Syracuse on Nov. 25 in Kansas City. The event is formally known as the Guardians Classic and started in 2001. last year, #2 UCLA defeated #10 Michigan State 68-63 in the CBE Classic at the Sprint Center. This is Kansas’ first appearance in the event.

Kansas Men’s Basketball 2008 Fall Signees

Elijah Johnson (G, 6-2, 183, Las Vegas, Nev. – Cheyenne HS)

Thomas Robinson (F, 6-8, 224, Washington, D.C. – Brewster [N.H.] Academy)

In the Polls

Kansas enters the week No. 24 in both the Associated Press and ESPN/USA Today Coaches’ polls released Nov. 17. KU has been ranked in each of the last 48 coaches’ polls dating back to the 2005-06 season and the last 45 AP polls.

Manning to Be Inducted into College Basketball Hall of Fame

The voices of college basketball, the Iron Man of coaching and a pair of players who led their teams to NCAA championships, including Kansas great Danny Manning, are among seven people to be enshrined in the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame on Sunday, November 23, 2008. The announcement came last April 6 by the National Association of Basketball Coaches Foundation. The ceremony will be held at the College Basketball Experience (CBE) and Sprint Center in Kansas City, Mo. The 2008 inductees include former Arkansas coach Nolan Richardson, Jim Phelan, who guided Mt. St. Mary College in 1,341 games and won 830 of those contests; Arnie Ferrin, the only four-time men’s basketball All-America at Utah, and consensus player of the year Manning, who guided the Jayhawks to the 1988 NCAA Championship in Kansas City. Two outspoken and passionate individuals who are the voices of college basketball will be inducted as contributors – Billy Packer and Dick Vitale.

Noting Kansas Basketball

–KU has held opponents to under 100 points in 223 consecutive games. The last team to score 100 on Kansas was Texas on Feb. 11, 2002 – a KU 110-103 overtime victory.

–Kansas has held 111 of its last 114 opponents to under 50 percent shooting.

–Kansas has sold out its last 112 games in Allen Fieldhouse dating back to the second game of the 2001-02 season.

–KU ranks third all-time in NCAA Division I victories with 1,944.

–Each KU senior class since 1986-87 has won at least 100 games. The 2008 seniors went 118-23.

–Under Bill Self, Kansas is 18-6 in Big 12 road games in the last three seasons. He is 27-12 in league road games during his five-year stint – 4-4 in 2004, 5-3 in 2005, 6-2 in 2006, 7-1 in 2007 and 5-3 in 2008.

–Kansas has won 23 or more games in each of the last 19 seasons dating back to 1988-89 and has 22 victories 21 times in the last 22 years.

–KU has won 10 or more league games for the last 14 seasons and 46 times overall.

–Bill Self has won 23 or more games each of his last 10 seasons as a head coach.

–Kansas has won eight of the 12 regular-season Big 12 titles and six Big 12 Championship postseason crowns.

–KU’s 51 conference titles are the most in NCAA Division I basketball.

–Kansas has led its league in home attendance each of the last 22 seasons dating back to 1986-87 and 27 times in the last 31 years.

Up Next

Kansas will play Washington in the CBE Classic semifinals Nov. 24 at 9 p.m. at the Sprint Center in Kansas City. The following day KU will face either Florida or Syracuse in the championship or consolation game. Should Kansas defeat Washington, it would play the Florida/Syracuse winner at 9:15 p.m. A Kansas loss to Washington and KU would play the Florida/Syracuse loser at 6:45 p.m.