Louisville guard Kevin Ware visits injured 14-year old

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Just over a week ago, Louisville guard Kevin Ware made an appearance at a stop on the athletic department’s “Cardinal Caravan” tour.

What came as a surprise to many was the fact that Ware was walking without the aid of crutches just two months after suffering a terrible leg injury in Louisville’s Midwest regional final game against Duke.

In what was a chilling moment for all involved, Ware provided the motivational spark his teammates needed as he implored them to go win the game. It was a selfless act to say the least, and Louisville would go on to heed Ware’s words (85-63 win over the Blue Devils) on their way to the program’s third national title.

During his appearance at Captain’s Quarters, Ware said the following to the Louisville Courier-Journal about using his position to help others in need:

“A guy wrote me from in jail and wanted me to reach out to his brother,” Ware said. “People like that I don’t have a problem at all, just trying to do something for them when they’re trying to do something for me. So many people just really show so much support, that has to humble you.”

The latest example of Ware reaching out to those in need occurred Thursday, when he visited 14-year old Brianna Boel at Kosair’s Childrens Hospital Thursday afternoon. Boel was one of two teenagers hit by a car in Louisville, suffering a fractured skull, wrist and right leg as a result. According to reports, the second victim’s injuries were not as severe.

Boel’s father, News 3 anchor John Boel, wrote on his Facebook page that he used Ware’s example to calm his daughter.

“I played the Kevin Ware card in trying to relax Bree,” John wrote, “reminding her what he was able to accomplish right away, and I was surprised at how well it worked. Thank you Kevin, one more time, for your inspiration in the real world.”

And after hearing Boel’s story there was Ware, cheering her up and even signing the following message on her cast: “Pinky promise. You will be fine.”

h/t Matt Norlander

Raphielle 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.