Kansas was forced to eat crow and apologize on Saturday after their Late Night in the Phog event got a little bit too rowdy.
If you missed it, the Jayhawks brought Snoop Dogg to the party and he showed up decked out in Adidas gear with stripper poles, pole dancers and a gun that shoots money:
On the one hand, yes.
This is amazing.
I cannot stand the NCAA, and it’s very difficult to interpret the things that happened on Friday night – and the promo for it, which featured Bill Self with a t-shirt that had a massive Adidas logo and a huge gold chain – as anything other than a giant double-bird shoved directly in the face of Mark Emmert and his cronies. If you’ve forgotten (how could you forget?), Kansas is currently facing a litany of Level I violations that were handed down as a result of the things that former Adidas bag-man T.J. Gassnola testified to at the trial for former Adidas executives Jim Gatto and Merl Code and one-time aspiring NBA agent Christian Dawkins last October.
The details aren’t important in the context of this conversation.
What is important is that what Kansas is doing is roughly equivalent to getting a speeding ticket and then sending a video of yourself using that ticket as toilet paper to the judge before you go in for sentencing.
And I love it.
I’m here for the drama and the messiness, and I cant imagine anything that will be more dramatic or messy that watching this Kansas program thumb their nose at the NCAA as they try and play their way to a national title this year.
But there’s so much more to this story than that, and frankly, it makes Kansas look terrible.
That trial that Gassnola testified at?
It sent Gatto, Code and Dawkins to prison, and part of the reason that those men are in prison is because Kansas leaned in to the idea that they were a “victim.” They wrote a ridiculous victim impact statement to the judge presiding over the trial that was taken into account when those men were sentenced to federal prison.
“The damage done by Mr. Gatto’s and his co-conspirators’ greed cannot be overstated,” William Sullivan Jr., an attorney for KU, wrote. “Their actions impaired the University of Kansas’ ability to continue to fully use those resources for both the benefit and welfare for its student-athletes, as well as for its ongoing mission of educational and community development and enrichment.”
Kansas asked for more than $1 million in restitution from Gatto, “so that actions can be taken to repair the damage that they have done to the collegiate basketball community, in general, and to the University of Kansas, in particular.”
That’s not a joke.
After helping to ruin the lives of people that were trying to help the basketball program, Kansas tried to bankrupt them, too. They settled for roughly $200,000, because a glorified middle-manager at Adidas will have that lying around after spending the money to defend himself against a bunch of trumped up charges. (I hope you can sense the sarcasm.)
Look, everyone knows how the system works.
Adidas signs a nine figure endorsement deal with Kansas. Adidas does what they can to help get players to the school to protect their investment. Kansas doesn’t complain because they get good players as a result; it’s part of the deal even if it isn’t written in to the contract, and everyone knows it.
It’s ludicrous that there are human beings doing federal time because of it.
And it’s shameful that Kansas would lean into the trolling the way that they have after they helped put those men behind bars by pretending they were too naïve to know the truth.