Mac Stevenson
In the last few years, Kansas has had more than its fair share of issues while dealing with the NCAA concerning the eligibility of their men’s basketball players. The two most-recently affected players have been Cheick Diallo and Billy Preston.
In all of the cases involving KU, the main problem has been the NCAA’s slowness in making a decision on whether or not a player is eligible. Now another problem has taken center stage: Silvio De Sousa’s guardian has been accused of receiving a payment from an Adidas official during De Sousa’s recruitment by KU. The accusation has been denied by all concerned.
But here we go again. The NCAA has had since the end of last season in early April to pursue a decision as to whether or not De Sousa is eligible for the upcoming season. The bet here is that they will still be dragging their feet when the games begin this coming November and there’s no excuse for that happening again. Seven months is way more than enough time to come to a resolution for any problem. The NCAA’s ineptness and slowness are inexcusable and unfair to all concerned.
And the issue became even more frustrating with the intrusion of the FBI; it would seem that the feds have enough internal problems of their own without trying to take over the enforcement branch of the NCAA. How in the world did the FBI become involved with college basketball?
Self has been asked time after time if he is worried about De Sousa’s eligibility for the upcoming season. He recently said, “I’m not at this stage. Nobody, at this stage has given us any information that would lead us to believe that he could be in jeopardy in that way. That’s also with us not knowing all the information. Or do we know all the information? If we know it, then I feel very comfortable. But the bottom line is that’s something that’s got to play out. And as much as I would like to say he’s positively this or that, I can’t do that. But I will tell you, there has been no indication at this time that we will have a serious problem with that.”
The real issue is getting the NCAA and FBI to agree on a resolution of the De Sousa episode before the 2018 basketball season begins—both institutions’ recent conduct would cast doubt on their ability to do so
After KU’s new AD Jeff Long’s introductory press conference, basketball coach Bill Self said, “I think this is a great place and I think our place got better today. I think Jeff will make our place better, and I think people should be very excited about that.”
It’s notable that AD Long doesn’t take himself too seriously; he told football coach David Beaty and his assistant coaches not to cancel their summer vacations to attend his press conference. He said, “They don’t need to be here for this little piece of Kansas history.”
From here, it looks like Chancellor Girod and Drue Jennings picked the right man for the job. In 2003 Jennings hired Bill Self and Girod included Jennings in the search for a new AD—that speaks well for both men.
What’s most noteworthy about KU’s awful football situation is that the Jayhawk fans finally have a hands-on chancellor who is showing an active interest—in addition to his many other duties—in reviving the football program.
It’s happened again. Kansas State’s football team has been ranked sixth in the preseason Big 12 media poll. Last season the Wildcats finished tied for fourth with a 5-4 Big 12 record and won the Cactus Bowl against UCLA (35-17). And K-State has most of the key players back.
Bill Snyder will be coaching his 27th team at Kansas State and he must be accustomed to being underrated by the league’s media members.
Kansas was ranked dead last—a unanimous choice by all 52 media voters. That’s as low as you can sink so far as preseason polls are concerned. Fortunately, even though these polls create interest, they are meaningless.
The Kansas City Chiefs open training camp at St. Joseph next week on Thursday, July 26. Football season is coming fast. Bill Barnwell—pro football pundit at ESPN—recently rated the Chiefs’ offense as the best in the NFL.
This high ranking is remarkable for one reason: KC is going with inexperienced QB Patrick Mahomes as their starter. He has a stellar group of receivers in Travis Kelce, Tyreek Hill, Sammy Watkins, Chris Conley, De’Anthony Thomas, and Demarcus Robinson. But Mahomes still has to prove himself in NFL games.
The Chiefs open their exhibition season on August 9 against the Houston Texans.