UC Davis looking to break world record for largest ‘knockout’ game for good cause

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Less than a week ago Jim Les’ UC Davis Aggies had one of the best shooting nights in school history, tying a school record with 16 made three-pointers and Corey Hawkins scoring a school-record 40 points in their win at Hawaii.

Members of the basketball team will collaborate with members of the UC Davis community on Friday evening in an attempt to break a world record while also raising money for a good cause.

The school is holding an event called “Knockout Slavery,” as they’ll play a massive game of “knockout” (video linked in case for some reason you don’t know how to play this game) with shooters paying $10 apiece to raise money to help in the fight against human trafficking.

The current record for largest game of knockout according to the Guinness Book of World Records is 571, and UC Davis is hoping to eclipse that mark by having some 600 participants.

But in order to do so they’ll need another 200 or so people to sign up for the game, and getting 600 shooters would raise $6,000 for the cause.

Kyle Thomsen, youth pastor at University Covenant Church and director of the event, says this occasion “creates an easy way to fight the injustice of human trafficking and be part of something bigger than oneself. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to participate in something that will make a huge difference while breaking a world record!”

In addition to members of the basketball team, participants will include many of the ministries on campus, UC Davis students and members of the Davis community. Is there someone in town capable of outshooting Hawkins and the other Aggies? Only one way to find out, especially if you’re in the Davis area on Friday.

Photo credit: UC Davis Athletics

Raphielle also writes for the NBE Basketball Report and can be followed on Twitter at @raphiellej.

Former Wichita State assistant returns as a consultant

Chris Jans, Gregg Marshall
Associated Press
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Prior to a one-year stint as the head coach coach at Bowling Green that came to an end in early April as a result of an incident at a Bowling Green restaurant, Chris Jans was a member of Gregg Marshall’s coaching staff at Wichita State from 2007-14. During those seven seasons Jans was a key figure as the Shockers made the progression to a respected national power.

Jans is back in Wichita, with Paul Suellentrop of the Wichita Eagle reporting Thursday that he’s serving as a consultant to the program. Jans’ consulting agreement runs for 45 days, which the school can renew, and he’ll be paid $10,000 for the work. While Jans isn’t allowed to do any coaching, he can watch practices and provide Marshall and the coaching staff with his observations.

“He will be able to consult with the coaching staff, only on what he observes in practice,” said Darron Boatright, WSU deputy athletics director. “By NCAA rule, a consultant is not allowed to have communication with student-athletes … not about basketball-related activities or performance.”

While Jans (who according to the story has served in a similar role for another school) can’t do any coaching in this role, his return does give Marshall another trusted voice to call upon when needed. Wichita State bid farewell to an assistant coach this spring with Steve Forbes being hired as the head coach at East Tennessee State, with his position being filled by former Sunrise Christian Academy coach Kyle Lindsted.


AUDIO: Rick Pitino discusses allegations, future at Louisville

Rick Pitino
Associated Press
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Thursday afternoon marked the first time since Friday that Louisville head coach Rick Pitino commented on the controversy that has taken his program by storm. Speaking with Terry Meiners of 840 WHAS in Louisville, Pitino discussed the escort scandal, what could have possibly led former staffer Andre McGee down the path he’s alleged to have taken in Katina Powell’s book and his future at Louisville.

The interview began with Meiners asking Pitino if it changed his thinking as to whether or not he needed to resign, which (as one would expect) Pitino shot down. Also discussed was the statement released by school president Dr. James Ramsey, which expressed support for athletic director Tom Jurich but did not mention Pitino at all.

“Well I can’t answer that, Terry,” Pitino said when asked why he wasn’t mentioned in the statement. “Twenty-six years ago Kentucky brought me in to make the program compliant to NCAA rules. (Then-Kentucky president) Dr. (David) Roselle and (then Kentucky athletic director) C.M. Newton thought I was the guy to come in and change around the images, change around the culture and add a lot of discipline to the program. And I did that.

“And then I came here to the University of Louisville, and if someone was five seconds late or not early consequences would be paid from a disciplinary standpoint,” Pitino continued. “This is obviously not a person being late, this is not about a person (not) working hard. This is about things that are very disgusting, things that turn my stomach, things that keep me up without sleeping.

“But unfortunately, I had no knowledge of any of this and don’t believe in it. It’s sickening to me, the whole thing. But I’m thinking of my 13 players, I’m thinking of our program, and I’m sorry that Dr. Ramsey did not think enough to mention me but that’s something I cannot control.”

Below is audio of the full interview, which ran just over 17 minutes in length.