A month after KU coach caught on wiretapped phone call discussing recruit and money, chancellor has not talked to coach

University of Kansas Chancellor Douglas Girod speaks during a KU forum about budget cuts at Eaton Hall in this Monday, Aug. 27, 2018, file photo.

On Oct. 16 federal court proceedings revealed a University of Kansas basketball coach discussed on a wiretapped phone conversation a high-profile recruit and potential cash payments that could get him to come to KU.

A month later, KU Chancellor Douglas Girod still hasn’t talked to assistant basketball coach Kurtis Townsend about the matter or received an explanation from him.

“We are waiting for direction from the NCAA, and we are officially in stand-down mode until they engage, and they have indicated they are going to engage. So, no, I have not,” Girod told the Journal-World Thursday evening when asked whether he had talked to Townsend or gotten an explanation about what he meant when talking about a recruit and cash payments.

Furthermore, Girod said he is uncertain whether the public ever will receive an explanation about what Townsend meant when he said “if that’s what it takes to get him here for 10 months, we are going to have to do it some way.” Townsend made the comment after being told the recruit allegedly expressed interest in cash payments and other inducements that would be prohibited under NCAA rules.

On Thursday, when the Journal-World asked Girod whether the public should expect an explanation about those comments at some point in the future, Girod said: “It is a fair question, and I don’t know the answer to it. Again, we are following everybody else’s directions at this point. I don’t know if the NCAA plans on putting out a report. I don’t know what they plan on doing.”

When pressed further on whether a lack of an explanation would be troubling, given that one interpretation of Townsend’s comments are that Townsend was open to violating a fundamental NCAA rule, Girod said: “My assumption is the NCAA will want to look into it.”

Meanwhile, Townsend remains on staff and has not been placed on any leave or other such status while the matter is being reviewed. KU head coach Bill Self previously has said that none of Townsend’s recruiting duties have been curtailed as a result of the allegations. Athletic Director Jeff Long has declined to comment on whether he has talked with Townsend about the matter.

The Journal-World briefly interviewed Girod on Thursday evening as the chancellor was leaving an event at the Lied Center on the KU campus. The Journal-World last month submitted a more detailed list of questions to the chancellor’s spokesman, but his office for more than two weeks has not returned an email or phone calls seeking a meeting to answer those questions.

The wiretapped phone conversation was brought up as part of a federal trial that ultimately led to fraud convictions of three college basketball insiders who were found to have orchestrated a pay-for-play college basketball recruiting scheme. Two of the three convicted men had direct links to the KU basketball program through their employment with Adidas, which has a multimillion-dollar apparel partnership with KU. A third Adidas employee who has pleaded guilty to fraud in a related case also had a direct connection to the KU basketball program.

On the phone conversation, Townsend was discussing with Adidas consultant Merl Code — one of the three men found guilty in the trial — prized recruit Zion Williamson. Code told Townsend that Williamson had expressed interest in inducements to come to KU. According to a transcript of the call read in court, the inducements included “cash in the pocket” and housing for him and his family.

At that point, according to the transcript, Townsend responded: “I’ve got to just try to work and figure out a way because if that’s what it takes to get him here for 10 months, we’re going to have to do it some way.”

More details about the phone conversation are not known. The recording was not played in court, and the full transcript of the call has not been released.

Williamson, the recruit, ultimately did not come to Kansas. He currently is playing for Duke University.

In Thursday’s brief interview, Girod did not make any statements about what he believes the NCAA will find when it begins looking into the matter. In April, when an unsealed federal indictment alleged that the family or guardian of two players — now identified as current player Silvio De Sousa and former player Billy Preston — had been paid to attend KU, Girod expressed “complete confidence that our staff understand and follow the rules.”

In a joint written statement with new athletic director Jeff Long that was issued after the conclusion of the federal trial, Girod did not repeat that assertion of complete confidence. Instead, the duo acknowledged the trial had revealed some information that KU leaders were not previously aware of. Instead of issuing a statement of complete confidence that its staff had followed the rules, Girod and Long offered a more qualified statement.

“By limiting our comments, we are able to protect the integrity of the federal matters and the work of the NCAA,” the pair said in the joint statement. “While that work continues, we remain fully supportive of our student athletes, our coaches and our men’s basketball program.”

Comments

Phil Leister

Go away Chad

10 months ago

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Sae Thirtysix

Totally agree!! Hit the road Brad . . . I mean Chad.

Now is mostly plagiarism – acknowledged and confessed. But Elliott Reeder stated this so well they last time Chad opened his pie hole on this topic . . . here goes:

"Hi Chancellor, thank you for your call. Obviously what I was saying is that, I’ve just got to work and try to figure out a way because if that is what it takes to get him here for 10 months, we’re going to have to do it some way, because as you know and gee whiz, we don’t do anything like that here at Kansas so just went on to explain that I will just have to find some way to put in some extra effort to convince him to come here despite his desire for big bags of money and stuff because we simply don't condone that type of thing around here (cause as you know – we are not Duke for goodness sakes), but we definitely want him for ten months so we'll just have to do it some way, and by DO IT of course I mean the previously mentioned extra effort in talking him into coming here... I mean really – I’m not sure he has ever seen our recent upgrades to McCarthy Hall!! Thank you again for calling, hope to see you in Allen for the next game."

10 months ago

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Jeff Coffman

Again the LJW is forgetting a key aspect. According to a partial transcript of a call. The whole transcript has not been seen.

Has LJW reviewed to see if Townsend reported the call to compliance?

Did KU sit Preston when they found out about the payment?

10 months ago

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Bill Pitcher

I don't think Arizona's chancellor was expected to "talk" to Sean Miller after that debacle. Miller seems to be doing just fine.

10 months ago

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Marius Rowlanski

Looks as though Miller doesn't need to worry about his job even after having communicated with one of the convicted agents.

10 months ago

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Dyrk Dugan

This is nonsense. There is no context of the call; it’s a TRANSCRIPT; we don’t even know if that part of the call was accurate, let alone the entire call. Remember, it wasn’t even allowed as evidence in the trial. Please LJW, let the process play out; you guys are getting scooped left and right on this whole story; when you have some original information to report, then report it; otherwise, these “gotcha” moments really sound whiny on your end.

10 months ago

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Yes, settle the F down, you Chad. Go ask Duke and Zion some questions. RCJH

10 months ago

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Robert Fast

IF the partial transcript is in question.....then what did Duke offer to get him there? It would appear either KU didn't offer anything or that Duke offered more.

10 months ago

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Joe Ross

I've actually thought a lot about that. Full transcripts were released between Gatto and Dawkins, for example. Why not here?

"Maybe" because there is information in there that is actionable for future prosecutions. That's all on the federal side. But such hidden information may trigger NCAA violations on the part of Williamson, Williamson's family, or the Duke coaching staff.

10 months ago

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Mike Maddox

The defense was trying to get the transcript entered into evidence to show that KU was not being defrauded. That they were complicit. But they were only trying to enter part of the conversation.

So if the rest of the transcript shows guilt on KU's part, the defense would have been smart to try and get it all entered in. That's not what they did. They only took a snippet of it. To me, that leaves open the possibility that the rest of that conversation didn't show what the defense wanted it to show (guilt on the part of KU).

10 months ago

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Joe Ross

My understanding was just the opposite: that the defense wanting ALL of it entered in to show that KU knew about the payments, but the judge didn't allow it because he felt it was beyond the scope.

10 months ago

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Mike Maddox

I don't know if the judge stopped the lawyer from playing the tape, or if the lawyer stopped the playback on his own. I only know for sure that the judge didn't allow it because the call took place after the crime they were charging Code with, so...beyond the scope.

But to answer your original question about why the full transcript wasn't released is simply because it was "released" by the media that were in the courtroom. So they only could report the portion that was played.

10 months ago

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Joe Ross

The question is, what did Townsend mean by "that"? As in, "...*that's* what it's going to take to get him here for 10 months...".

Context:

Code tells Townsend that Williamson wants impermissible benefits.

Townsend answers, "“I’ve got to just try to work and figure out a way because if THAT'S what it takes to get him here for 10 months, we’re going to have to do it some way.”

Ergo: if "that" refers to impermissible benefits (and it appears that it does, given no other antecedent), then Townsend is clearly connecting Williamson's desire for inducements and his presence at Kansas, using capitulation to his demands as a bridge.

It's troubling.

10 months ago

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Mike Hart

Spot on, Joe... spot on.

10 months ago

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Mike Maddox

It's obvious that the word "that" refers to what he was just told it would take. That's not even a question. The question is what he means by "do it some way". The next sentence out of his mouth could have been Townsend telling him that KU could possibly offer him a coaching position on staff, which is legal, but they can't do the other things. We don't know.

People read into it whatever they want, but without context, there's no way any of us know 100%.

10 months ago

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Barry Weiss

I agree. "we are going to have to do it some way" clearly could mean "some" way, not the "same" way. and "it" could mean "bringing him here" not the impermissible benefits listed.

10 months ago

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Joe Ross

Well I never thought that diagramming sentences in high school would have much use in life, but here we are trying to extract meaning from a sentence.

"In some way" is a prepositional phrase that modifies the verb phrase "do it".

Well what is "IT"? "IT" and "THAT" are the *same thing!* The connection is absolutely crystal clear:

"...if THAT'S what it takes to bring him here...then we have to DO IT...".

One and the same. Again, "in some way" is merely descriptive of how "IT" is to be done.

It remains that, as above, the question centers about what he means by "that".

10 months ago

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Mike Hart

Joe Ross: Thank you for your sanity... and your fair-minded, common sensical view.

10 months ago

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Mike Maddox

I don't understand how you don't line up "if that's what it takes" with cash, housing, and job. That's the crystal clear part. He's told what he's asking for...what it will take.

My argument is that "we're going to have to do it some way" is open ended. The phrase "some way" is ambiguous without context. It could mean the way is to funnel cash under the table illegally. Or it could mean trying to find a legal way to do it, like a coaching position. We don't know.

10 months ago

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Joe Ross

Again, Mike.

While "some way" is ambiguous, "it" is NOT. Even your own reasoning establishes this. The "it", from a fair read, is clear within the context of the exchange. "It" and "that" refer to what it takes to get him here: provide inducements! HOW you provide the inducements (that is to say "in some way") is tangential and not germane to the point, so long as they are provided.

Obviously they weren't, because Williamson went elsewhere. But it seems clear to me that the willingness to cheat is patently demonstrated, and that's what can be learned from the exchange. This is why everyone is concerned. It's why the NCAA is going to take a look at it further.

10 months ago

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Mike Maddox

You miss the point where these things can be provided (in a roundabout way) within the rules. Give the dad a coaching spot on the bench.

Larry Brown did it with Danny Manning. Bill Self did it with Mario Chalmers. Other programs have done it too. So you don't give the guy a bag of cash, and a house...you just give him a job he's likely not qualified for and pay him enough money to keep him happy.

Some way...

Is it shady? Yeah. But it happens. And it's legal. I'm not entirely sure why though.

10 months ago

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Joe Ross

No. A coaching job given in a roundabout way can NOT be an avenue to satisfy Williamson's demands.

1. Kansas already has its maximum number of assistant coaches allowed under current NCAA rules. So they could not give Williamson's father a job even if they wanted to, unless they kicked someone off. They're not going to remove an assistant coach for a kid who's going to be here 10 months.

2. *"According to a transcript of the call read in court, the inducements included “cash in the pocket” and housing for him and his family."* These specific requests are not roundabout and, if provided by the University are well outside of the rules and qualify as impermissible benefits.

I haven't missed anything...

10 months ago

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Marius Rowlanski

You have it correct Joe. Trying to twist words to have ambiguous possible meanings isn't going to work.

10 months ago

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Shannon Gustafson

What if "it" means "get him here" and not "give him everything he's asking for"?

10 months ago

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Jeff Polaski

The only thing I find troubling is KU and the NCAA's stance that athletes shouldn't get anything but books and tuition for their efforts. They should be able to market themselves as well.

10 months ago

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Marius Rowlanski

KU doesn't have a stance. As long as the NCAA is the governing body, Kansas needs to follow the NCAA guidelines. Kansas may very well think it's a good idea to pay players but that doesn't matter.

10 months ago

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Steven Haag

I’m more “right wing” than most, so I’m in agreement that this doesn’t “look good” and perceptions can run wild when you are left to fill in the blanks yourself. With that said, Zion DIDN’T come here. If he didn’t come here and wasn’t paid anything by KU, then there is no crime. Let the process pay out. I’m quite sure that while the chancellor hasn’t talked to Townsend, coach Self has

10 months ago

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Joe Ross

Keen eye, Steven!

But here's the problem. The Zion Williamson situation didn't occur in a vacuum. NCAA investigators might consider the De Sousa situation in light of this one, and it may influence consequences they doll out. Investigators don't have to divulge publicly or even amongst themselves to what extent they take the Williamson situation into account--if they do, or if they don't at all--although human nature might suggest that when a conversation that stinks like this is factored in, the De Sousa matter might be influenced by some bleeding over. They would ostensibly be immune to criticism from considering Townsend's comments...if in fact they do consider them and levy consequences to KU relative to the De Sousa situation, because any influence the Williamson "scandal" has in the minds of investigators could be deflected with plausible deniability. (You can tell from this perspective that I do not trust the NCAA.)

Then the question becomes, "Can the NCAA take action against KU on De Sousa"? Well it's clear that the possibility exists, which is why he's being held out...

10 months ago

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Mike Barnhart

Townsend, “...we’re going to have to do it some way.”

(10 minutes later in Bill Selfs office)

Townsend: “Zion wants jobs and cash!”

Coach Self: “Well, Kurtis, I guess he’s going to Duke ‘cause we ain’t doing that.”

10 months ago

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Mike Hart

Good comedy, Barnhart.. I'm sure that's exactly how it played out. Because if that js what happened.. Self said "Well in that case, Duke can him!"... I can SURE understand why Self, Townsend and the Chancellor would want to refuse to comment on it.. and clear the dark clouds shrouding KU in this whole mess???!!. There is clearly more to come on this... and yet, the chancellor has already said that we may never get an explanation on this... even after NCAA investigations and legal issues play out. It's a farce to believe that our Chancellor hasn't asked Townsend or anyone... about this Townsend-Code phone conversation. Amazing to me how so many fans can even look at this objectively and on one hand... say wait to see how this plays out... while on the other hand.. they have simultaneously already decided that Self/Townsend didn't know anything about this.. and that Townsend didn't mean: We'll have to do "that"... if "that" is what it takes. Correcct, we don't have the whole transcripts.. but we DO know that Townsend's reply was DIRECTLY in response to Merl Code saying that Williamson wants cash in pocket, employment opportunities, and housing for family. KU... the Chancellor... Bill Self... .doesn't need nor require the NCAA's approval to ask Kurtis Townsend what he meant by all that. So lame to say that this has never been discussed between Townsend and the University hierarchy.

10 months ago

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Mike Barnhart

Yeah, I was trying brevity! Point is, defense attorney did not offer context to his “transcripts” and judge tossed it out. That’s all the proof I need that defense was trying to pull a fast one!

10 months ago

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Mike Maddox

There's no way KU hasn't discussed this internally. But my beliefs aren't facts.

What Townsend says next could change the whole context of that conversation. We know, for a fact, that KU has hired player's fathers as coaches before. It's a way to "pay" players within the rules. Maybe he offered that as a counter, we don't know.

We also are told that they were saying Nassir Little was asking for money, and then these guys testified that he wasn't really asking for money. Some of them were just lining their own pockets, lying about players. So it's hard to even say that Zion's dad was actually doing anything wrong, we only have what Merl Code said.

Look, I get it. It doesn't look good. But I tend to try and not judge people without all the relevant information at hand. I'm not going to say Townsend is innocent. But I cannot say he's guilty either. We just don't know at this point.

10 months ago

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Shannon Gustafson

double post

10 months ago

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David Klamm

To be clear, the only person that directly mentioned money was the Adidas guy on the other end of this brief transcription of the call about Zion. Everything else is speculation and at this point without context. We have yet another intentionally inflammatory title by Chad Lawhorn who seems to go out of his way to write inflammatory headlines. Asking Girod to speak on this issue is just an excuse to write an article knowing that Girod has no reason nor will likely ever speak on the issue until or unless the NCAA finds that KU did something wrong.

10 months ago

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Mike Hart

David, the point is: Why NOT speak about it if KU has nothing to hide? Why not ask Townsend? Who not return a phone call in over 2 weeks ...if even to say no comment? Radio silence and playing stupid... only breeds further distrust and storm clouds.

10 months ago

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Mike Maddox

If Girod comes out and says nothing happened without full context, he'd get blasted if he ended up being wrong. My bet is he's talked with Townsend and self directly about it, probably many times. But there's taped conversations he hasn't seen, so for him to stick his neck out without the facts would be stupid.

I'd ignore the media too. Even if he called and said, "no comment", how is that any different than not calling back? Same thing to me.

10 months ago

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Mike Hart

Well you just said yourself that your "bet" is that Girod has talked to Townsend and Self directly ... "probably many times". If so, then when Girod DOES speak... he's lying when he says he hasn't talked to Townsend and Self.. and is waiting for direction/guidance from the NCAA. That's simply ridiculous... and in reality: Irresponsible. If Townsend has nothing to hide, then Townsend, Girod are doing an incredible disservice to KU and its image/brand, by not speaking out. Innocent people don't plead the 5th... innocent people don't stall on releasing documents for 2 weeks... only to finally make a statement that they don't feel documents are REQUIRED to be released under Freedom of Information Act. Ripping Chad Lawhorn for pointing out the lack of transparency by the KU governing body and the basketball program leadership... is ill-founded at best. In fact, I applaud him for pushing / demanding for some sort of response / explanation. Call NCAA rules archaic, etc all you want.. but I don't want KU to break rules and cheat to get better players. If that's what it takes to win, then I'll take an honest program that wins 70% of the time and consider it a real treat when we actually win the Big 12 without the associated speculation / mistrust on our recruiting practices. The University is bending over backwards to circle the wagons.. and not reveal a damn thing.. .and I for one.. think that stinks.

10 months ago

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Mike Maddox

Yeah, I think Girod is lying about talking to Townsend/Self. I also don't really care. It's just a way to avoid having to talk to the press, which I see no issue with.

Look, you're going to believe what you want. It doesn't matter to you what Girod/Townsend say. Because Bill Self said both he and his staff have never used improper benefits to sway a recruit's decision. Do you believe that? If not, than why would Townsend saying the same thing make any difference to you?

Your logic makes no sense. You've been told by one of the most influential people at KU they did nothing wrong. You obviously don't believe that. You want to hear it from other people? For what purpose?

10 months ago

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David Klamm

@Mike Hart - You aren't here for a conversation because you have already made your mind up. I'm just really glad you aren't any part of the legal team for KU. Why would anybody at KU, especially Girod, offer anything up when it hasn't even been determined that the NCAA will find any fault with anything that happened at KU? The NCAA is horribly unpredictable as it is. KU has already opened all their books up to the FBI and they didn't find any need to bring a single indictment against the program. KU did their own internal investigation and history says that if they found something they would have gotten ahead of it by offering up self-imposed sanctions. I'm more than willing to wait for full context, if necessary, before judging and this Chad Lawhorn character wants to write inflammatory headlines to get clicks. I guess it's working, but from now on anything with his name will get an ignore from me.

10 months ago

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Joe Ross

My read of this comment is that you're either a very naive person, the Homerest of Homers, or both.

Townsend's conversation stinks. People are talking about it. Get over it.

10 months ago

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David Klamm

@Joe Ross - There is no conversation with Townsend. There is a one sentence response to a suggestion that Zion's father wanted money. There is zero evidence, to date, that KU or Townsend ever agreed to those demands and the fact is that Townsend wasn't indicted while assistants at Arizona, OSU, and Auburn were for being willing to exchange money. Being willing to wait for full context, if it ever even happens, doesn't make me a homer it makes me someone that doesn't jump to conclusions based on partial conversations. I'll say it again, I'm really glad individuals like you and Mike Hart aren't the legal representation for KU or for that matter, anybody. I'm not naive, but I'm a KU fan and I also understand that the entire goal of the defense in the most recent case was to pick and choose text messages and partial transcripts to try and make themselves look innocent and schools like KU guilty and the Judge and jury didn't buy it. I guess that makes them a bunch of naive KU homers as well.

10 months ago

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Mike Hart

My mind is as wide open as possible. I'm an engineer by training, so logic and analyzing data / group of facts is my default mode. My mind is blown away by people who keep saying: "We don't know the facts... reserve judgement"... only later to say: "KU didn't do anything wrong. Self said we don't know about KU or 3rd party offering impermissible benefits"...and people making EXCUSES for Townsend's comments. If people are going to chastise me for jumping to conclusions for truly questioning something that reflects poorly on KU and their recruiting practices... then I merely ask that those same people don't jump to conclusions and declare innocence. You offer up information to the media and others.. because there is rampant speculation that Townsend was condoning/supportive of the idea of paying players. To come out and say: "We haven't spoken to Townsend"... is frankly ridiculous and an insult to any fair-minded person's intelligence. Circling the wagons and ignoring all calls... and lying about not talking to Townsend only fans the flames... and further promotes the perception... that KU is hiding something. The #1 thing I am combatting here.. is that OTHER people's minds are made up that KU did nothing wrong.. and many are already stating their judgement that nothing improper has happened... absolving the University or coaching staff of any impropriety... all the while in the same breath..telling other people like me and Joe Ross to RESERVE judgement

10 months ago

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Shannon Gustafson

You don't comment on ANYTHING when you're being investigated. It doesn't matter if you are innocent, guilty, know nothing about it, etc. This is grade school stuff. Not spilling their guts to the fans isn't an admission of guilt, it's being smart. The worst damn thing they could do, regardless of guilt/lack thereof, is to go around spouting off about whatever they are asked by the media, fans, etc. They would have to be morons to do that. It's the same reason they don't discuss details of the investigation into Preston or DeSousa or anything else.

This dillweed of an author acts like he used to work for the Star or is a MU or KSU grad or something as well. I don't understand why he's got such an axe to grind with this stuff. He acts like the administration owes him answers and they don't owe him anything.

10 months ago

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Mike Hart

Really? So I guess when Self commented that neither he nor his staff had provided improper benefits to a recruit... nor were they aware of any 3rd party providing improper benefits... then that should not have been said? Self did say that... at a press conference... and if that is the case, then Kurtis Townsend has nothing to hide. Girod lying that he hasn't talked to Townsend about it is laughable. So if you're not going to say anything... when you DO open your mouth (Girod).. don't lie and say something so ridiculous, as if you never thought to ask or saw a reason... to ask Townsend about the transcript.

10 months ago

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Cary Ronan

So, what you're saying is that absolutely nothing has happened since the last time you guys beat this story to death? Awesome. I'll go back to looking forward to watching the game tonight.

10 months ago

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Brian Wilson

Well my guess is Townsend will say something to the effect that he was going to see if there was someway within the rules that he could make Williamson happy. But, he later decided there was not way to do within the rules so no offer was ever made and so the player went someplace else.<br><br>
IMO, 99% of all speech and thoughts come in emotional situations, and without actions it is hard to prove if there is any real intent, so they should not be a crime. The exception of course
would be yelling things like "Fire" which could cause public panic.<br><br>
Townsend saying he will have to find a way to make it happen doesn't mean he ever tried. <br> I would like to take all the gold in Fort Knox, but that doesn't mean I am going to actually do it.

10 months ago

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Mike Hart

You all sure have all the excuses in the world for this coaching staff. Yet, if it was a losing program... you'd probably all want Townsend's head.. and Self's on a platter. Talk about your double standards...

10 months ago

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Shannon Gustafson

Mike, you've clearly made up your mind because you're SUCH an intellect compared to everyone else here, you KNOW FACTS about this stuff, unlike the rest of us who can only speculate (or simply let it all play out and move on) and you REFUSE to believe anything anyone else says to the contrary, even when it's Bill Self himself. So if you're SO sure that KU is dirty and you said above you'd rather cheer for a clean program then GTFO and don't let the door hit you on the way out. You're just wasting your time beating a dead horse here. Maybe you could send a message to Chad and you guys could schedule a weekly dinner to discuss all of your FACTS about this situation since Chad is in the game of speculation and/or no new info = GUILTY just like you.

10 months ago

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Joe Ross

I like you Shannon. Always have.

But Townsend's conversation stinks and it's natural for people to talk about it.

Period.

10 months ago

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Mike Hart

Shannon, I'm not "so sure" about anything. You sarcastically referring to me as an intellect compared to everyone else here, etc. Don't do that... leave the personal cracks out of this. I am merely railing against those who are blindly defending the University and the basketball program at all costs. I find it unfortunate that too many people just want all this to go away... and truly don't CARE if KU was breaking rules. Well, I do care and I won't apologize for that. I also will not accept Girod feeding me a line of bull about not talking to Townsend. People are ripping Chad for this article, and that's unfounded. KU's handling of this situation has only raised more speculation and questions... and they have done themselves no favors. The rest of your angry, abrasive commentary toward me is unwarranted. Chad, the author of the article... is being criticized for asking rather standard questions. He hasn't speculated anything... and he is writing about the University providing no facts / info. He hasn't called anyone guilty of anything, nor have I. These are callouts for clarity... a call for clarification of Townsend... which has been wholly ignored. The lack of facts and "no new info" is because everyone representing the University is radio silent. They have the right to be radio silent... but if you choose to go that route, expect questions.. and you are opening yourself up to criticism. Sad commentary, that my allegiance / loyalty to the University is questioned because I ask for clarity and want confidence that KU runs a clean program... and if somehow that makes me a Pariah, then so be it...I can live with that.

10 months ago

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Joe Black

Wow! Once again Chad Law(less)horn writes a ho-hum article but adds a sensationalized title to it that really misrepresents what the actual facts are. This is almost enough for me to want Keegan back.

10 months ago

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Mike Hart

Joe, fill me in: What's "misrepresented" exactly in Chad's article? What is not true? I'm struggling here to find it...

10 months ago

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Mike Auer

Well for one Townsend did not once mention money during the conversation.

10 months ago

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Mike Hart

Right .. he only DIRECTLY responded to Merl Code's comments that it would take cash in pocket, employment opportunities, and housing for family... to bring him to KU. And instead of repeating those item verbatim (who would do that by the way??)... he said "Well, if that's what it takes to get him here for 10 months, then we are going to have to find a way to do it". "That"... is not in response to anything else other than Merl Code's statement as to what would have to be done FINANCIALLY for Williamson and his family to get him to KU.

Using your logic. If you went to a store and wanted to buy a baseball glove for your son.. and the salesman says: "It will cost you $50 for that glove". And if you responded "Well, if that is what it takes to get the glove, I will have to find a way to make it happen". I guess that means you aren't REALLY talking about money.. since you didn't specifically state money in your response... and instead you were REALLY going to try to find a way to obtain the glove through other means, other than $$$. I mean GET SERIOUS.

10 months ago

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Joe Ross

You GET IT, Mike!

10 months ago

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Shannon Gustafson

If that conversation takes place in the store then you DON'T know what is meant. It could mean he plans to steal the glove later, or convince someone else to steal it for him, or convince the guy to give him a better deal, or give it to him for free, or he'll try to barter a trade, or he may decide he'll have to ask Santa for it. The point is, while you may THINK you know what it means, you don't actually know. Acting like you know only makes you look like a fool. If you say you think it's a certain thing, or it seems like he's saying this or that then fine. But the force with which you assert your absolute certainty that it means "x" is laughable. It's your OPINION and your opinion doesn't mean sh## no matter how much time you waste spewing it all over these articles.

10 months ago

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Mike Hart

Shannon, I have never stated anything here as a fact. The strength or force of my assertions... is only in response to those who are blindly defending Townsend or offering up speculative excuses. So if I am to be criticized for interpreting Townsend's comments and believing that if push came to shove... he was willing to accommodate the recruits demands... then that same criticism should be applied to those who are interpreting Townsend's comments to be of a more innocent nature... i.e. downplaying the significance of his comments. We don't know all the details. Which is why Chad is writing the article to begin with. Everyone wants (or should want) this cleared up but in fact: Girod has come out and said he hasn't talked to Townsend.. and that there may never be a response to a question about Townsend's intent. I have a problem with that... if you don't, then fine, but there is something to be said for accountability.. and owning your comments... whichever way that falls.

10 months ago

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Brad Avery

I am not necessarily the biggest fan of our Chancellor. However, his last name is not Mueller, and I don't believe he was hired to be an investigating attorney, especially regarding partial conversations that were allegedly taken from a wire-tapped conversation, allegedly involving a KU assistant coach who allegedly talked about getting Zion Williamson to KU. Simply because allegations have been printed or made public as the result of a trial does not make them true, We do know for a fact that Zion Williamson does not play for KU, and if I were the Chancellor, I would refer all questions regarding his recruitment to the Duke athletic office.

10 months ago

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Mike Riches

Every Zion dunk I see on SportsCenter, I wonder why there isn't an NCAA investigation happening with Duke right now. Maybe that will happen with future trials, but I wonder if the NCAA isn't just scared of a big lawsuit themselves.

10 months ago

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Joe Ross

I have to admit the same feeling. What do the feds know about Zion? Why doesn't Townsend's conversation with Code spur on more investigation into Duke's recruitment of the player, and by extension a greater number of Nike schools? It's not like Adidas is the only one guilty of this. No way.

Misery loves company.

10 months ago

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Kevin Whelan

NCAA has a penchant for following the money. Bad news here won’t fill the coffers.

10 months ago

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Mike Auer

I have got a question for you Chad. Where did Townsend mention money? Your article is inaccurate, misleading, and unprofessional.

10 months ago

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Mike Hart

Still blind are we, Mr Magoo?

10 months ago

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Larry McGlinn

This is pretty much what I would expect from a bunch of rabid KU fans: "What about Zion, huh?" You're deflecting, spinning and justifying. To see the transcripts and think that money was not involved is mental gymnastics. I think it is fair to ask why the boss has not talked to Self and his assistants yet. In addition to KU I also am a Penn State grad, and while no one is suggesting the kind of ugly stuff that went on there it does suggest that Self has his kingdom just like Paterno did and that he is not accountable to anyone. There are shenanigans going on, but let's not slow down the gravy train. 15 Big 12 titles! Yee-ha! Clean program or winning. I guess we know where most of you stand. And that is fine. I'm a KU fan just reminding you of where you stand.

10 months ago

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Mike Maddox

We don't even know for sure that Zion's dad asked for anything. All we know is that Code says he did. And those shoe execs already lied about other players asking for money (Nassir Little).

It doesn't take mental gymnastics to see a different scenario than what you put forth. It takes one sentence. Townsend could have countered by offering up a coaching position, a salary that would more than take care of all three of the requests, and is within the rules. Something that KU has done in the past multiple times.

Is that mental gymnastics? I think you just have your mind made up, which is why it's so hard for you to think about other possibilities. You state yourself, "there are shenanigans going on". You state it as a fact. So why are you reading these articles? You've already got it all figured out.

10 months ago

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Mike Hart

Thanks, Larry. At least Paterno REPORTED the Sandusky incident to his superiors... and it was his superiors who did NOTHING about it. And then Paterno takes the fall for it. You are also being kind when you say "To see the transcripts and think money was not involved is "mental gymnastics"". It's more like blatant ignorance to think money was not the subject of Townsend's response. I hate it when we criticize other programs... and the Pitino's and Caliparis... and then choose to turn a blind eye to our own program.. or look at the situation with scarlet begonia-stained glasses.

10 months ago

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Shannon Gustafson

Right, and clearly KU's staff hasn't reported ANYTHING over the years. That's why we've sat players out multiple times over the years while stuff is figured out right? Selby, Bragg, Preston, DeSousa, any of those ring a bell?

Give me a break. You can't have it both ways. Acting like Paterno is a saint compared to Self simply because he reported it, all the while while Paterno continued to let a child molester hang around the facility and use it to fondle kids after he'd already been caught in the shower with one. Paterno knew about Sandusky's ways for 25 YEARS and did nothing and yet you're saying he took the fall for it? Do you know what facts are or has the current administration convinced you that alternative facts are a real thing?

https://www.nytimes.com/2016/07/13/sp...

10 months ago

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Kenny George

Until this entire FBI investigation is finished I would not expect Girod to directly speak to anyone, including Townsend, about this incident . End of story.

10 months ago

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Barry Weiss

Girod has to do what KU's attorneys and to a lessor extent, the NCAA, say. So I got no beef with him not making comments to anyone.

10 months ago

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Doug Merrill

The LJW should give this a rest until something real occurs. But why would they stop this needless "reporting" given the ton of replies you guys have posted? That is all this reporter and the paper care about it: hits on the website and papers on porches.

We should all give it a rest - me included.

10 months ago

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Joe Ross

If the LJW were silent on the issue, people would also complain...saying they aren't do their jobs as reporters. If true, Girod's lack of a conversation with Townsend is a pretty staggering realization, given how recruiting violations could impact the program, the school and, ultimately, its perception.

10 months ago

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Mike Hart

Bingo...

10 months ago

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Pius Waldman

If you pour gasoline on a fire zoom explosions. Chad appears to be a gasoline thrower. Seems like the KU top dogs are holding on the gasoline. Many of us are waiting to see what the future holds. DeSousa is being punished without a trial. In addition it appears others doing things are not being punished. Hey big game tonight

10 months ago

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