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August 23, 2003 Conference Notes No Comments

The Morning Dish – Saturday, August 23rd

Swan Death Ruled Suicide: William Swan, former St. Bonaventure board of regents chairman, took his own life Thursday, at the age of 55. According to emergency dispatchers, Swan had hanged himself. New York State Police released a statement that Swan had been “despondent over issues that had occurred as a result of his positions at the university.” According to sources, Swan wrote in a suicide note that he felt he had let his beloved university down. If he had acted more forcefully when questions were raised about Jamil Terrell’s eligibility, the scandal and subsequent national embarrassment might have been averted.

Razorback Ineligible: Arkansas recruit Julius Lamptey will not play ball for Stan Heath’s team this season after it was revealed that he has not met eligibility requirements. Lamptey, a 7-0, 280-pound center, graduated from Oklahoma City Northeast High School, and played last season at New Hampton prep school in New Hampshire while he tried to get his grades up. Lamptey was to be part of Stan Heath’s first full recruiting class at Arkansas.

Drew Introduced: Scott Drew was formally introduced the new Baylor head coach yesterday, about the same time that his father, Homer Drew, was being announced as the new head coach at Valparaiso. The elder Drew, who came out of retirement to fill the position left at the helm of the Crusaders by his son’s move to Baylor, will retain his position at Valparaiso as special assistant to the president for university advancement. Prior to retirement, Homer Drew stated that Valparaiso was one of only three jobs that interested him, the others were Notre Dame and Saint Louis, Drew’s hometown. Homer also was a head coach for over a decade at Bethel College (Mishawaka, Indiana), Indiana University-South Bend, and served as an assistant at Louisiana State and Washington State. He has a career record of 505-307.

Problem Ruling: Because of the stay granted by an Ohio circuit court, several basketball tournaments have lost some marquee teams as part of the newly-reinstated 2-in-4 rule. Duke, Missouri, Stanford, Michigan State, Memphis and Kentucky all do not have the necessary exemptions to compete in the events. The Coaches vs. Cancer Classic, which is slated for November 13-14th in New York, is looking for teams after Stanford, St. John’s, and Missouri had to pull out. The eight-team BCA Invitational is looking for a new host, as Kentucky had to pull out, and the Great Alaska Shootout lost Houston. Kansas also had to pull out of the Guardians Classic.

Wilborn Pleads Guilty: Former Tennessee forward Elgrace Wilborn pleaded guilty yesterday to a reduced charge of misdemeanor assault, stemming from his June 1st fight with roommate and teammate Brandon Crump, in which Champ’s jaw was broken. Wilborn, who was dismissed from the team the following week, had originally been facing a felony count, but in a plea deal the charges were reduced. Wilborn was given 11 months, 29 days suspended sentence. As a first-time offender, the matter could be kept off Wilborn’s record if he completes a diversion program. Wilborn has transferred to Nebraska, where he will sit out one year under NCAA transfer rules.

No, Wisconsin: The University of Wisconsin announced a new policy that student-athletes that are arrested for any incident that involved drugs, violence, or gambling will be suspended from all competition and practices. Prior to the policy, each coach determined their player’s punishment. Suspended players can rejoin their team once the matter is cleared by the courts, or heard by an appellate council made up of the athletics director and board members. Several incidents in the past fueled the new policy, as wide receiver Lee Evans pleaded no contest to marijuana possession, running back Anthony Davis pleaded guilty to battery, and hockey captain Brad Winchester pleaded no contest to battery in a barroom brawl where he punched a police officer.

Kansas News: New Kansas head coach Bill Self said that forward Wayne Simien, who missed most of last season with shoulder injuries, was cleared to being workouts in anticipation of him rejoining the Jayhawks in time for the season. Meanwhile, in an update from last month, the large Jayhawk logo that will adorn the James Naismith court has been approved at 25 feet in height – half of the width of the floor. The Jayhawk replaces the state of Kansas outline that had been featured since 1998. Lastly, it appears as though former Jayhawk great Danny Manning is set to join Bill Self’s staff, although his capacity had not been worked out. Manning, the school’s all-time leading scorer and rebounder, led the Jayhawks under Larry Brown to the national championship in 1988, and spent 15 seasons in the NBA. Self was an assistant at KU in 1985-86 during Manning’s sophomore season.

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