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Kansas vs. Florida Gulf Coast Preview

Kansas vs. FGCU

Defending NCAA Champion Kansas opened its 2008-09 season with a 71-56 win against UMKC in the first round of the O’Reilly Auto Parts CBE Classic on Sunday. After a day off, KU will now host Florida Gulf Coast on Tuesday, Nov. 18 at 8 p.m. in the second round of the event. The games will be televised on ESPNU. Kansas is 1-0 for the seventh straight year and won its 36th consecutive home opener in Allen Fieldhouse. Florida Gulf Coast will be opening its season at Allen Fieldhouse. FGCU was 10-21 last season.

2008 National Championship Banner Unveiling on Nov. 18

A fifth national championship banner honoring the 2008 Kansas NCAA title will be unveiled prior to the Florida Gulf Coast contest at approximately 7:45 p.m. (Central), Tuesday (Nov. 18). The banner will be hung at the north end of Allen Fieldhouse. Earlier this year, a 2008 Final Four banner was raised at the south end of Allen Fieldhouse during Late Night in the Phog.

About Kansas

Kansas is coming off a 71-56 win against UMKC in its season opener Sunday. Junior guard SherronC ollins paced the Jayhawks with 16 points, while freshman Markieff Morris added 15 rebounds, the most for a Jayhawk since Nick Collison had 21 in the 2003 NCAA championship game against Syracuse. Markieff had seven points for the game. Sophomore center Cole Aldrich scored 13 points with five rebounds and sophomore guard Tyrel Reed had 12 points and four rebounds for KU. KU enters its 111th year of college basketball. Last season, KU won its 51st league title, most in NCAA Division I. The Jayhawks return eight letterwinners from last season’s 37-3 team, yet less than 20 percent of almost every statistical category.

About Florida Gulf Coast

Like KU and UMKC, Florida Gulf Coast is rebuilding. The Eagles lost 11 and return two letterwinners from last season’s 10-21 team, which tied for eighth in the Atlantic Sun Conference race with a 6-10 record. FGCU is led by lone senior guard Delvin Franklin who started 19 games with a 9.2 scoring average last year. He averaged 12.3 ppg in conference games. Sophomore forward Chad Lutkenhaus (1.3 ppg) is the other returning letterwinner for FGCU. Head coach Dave Balza has 12 newcomers on the team, including four junior college transfers. In its lone exhibition game, Florida Gulf Coast defeated NAIA Ave Maria 89-58 on Nov. 4. Four Eagles scored in double figures led by Franklin with 16 points. Junior guard Ben Vega had 14, while freshman guard Reggie Chambers had 11 and junior forward Kyle Marks added 12. Freshman forward Ed Rolax led the Eagles with nine rebounds for the game.

More basketball notes, roster information, jump into the post...

Elijah Johnson Inks NLI

On Nov. 17, Bill Self announced standout guard Elijah Johnson from Las Vegas has signed a national letter of intent to play at Kansas. A first team all-state selection in 2007-08, Johnson (6-2, 183) averaged 15.7 points, 7.4 rebounds and 8.9 assists in guiding Cheyenne High to the Nevada state championship game where it fell to Reno. Johnson is rated at the 27th best player in the 2009 class by Rivals.com and the fifth best point guard. Johnson currently plays for Teral Fair at Cheyenne High and played AAU basketball for Pump ‘N Run in Los Angeles this past summer and Houston Hoops previously.

In the Polls

Kansas enters the week No. 24 in both the Associated Press and ESPN/USA Today Coaches' polls released Nov. 17. KU has been ranked in each of the last 48 coaches’ polls dating back to the 2005-06 season and the last 45 AP polls.

CBE Classic Schedule

SEMIFINAL

(Sprint Center, Kansas City)

November 24th- 7:30 ET

Syracuse vs. Florida

Kansas vs. Washington

CHAMPIONSHIP

(Sprint Center, Kansas City)

November 25th- 7:45 ET

Consolation Game

Championship Game

2008-09 Kansas Roster (*last game starters)

No. Pos. Name Cl.-Exp. Ht. Wt. Hometown (Previous School)

2 G Conner Teahan So.-1L 6-5 215 Leawood, Kan. (Rockhurst HS)

4 G Sherron Collins Jr.-2L 5-11 200 Chicago, Ill. (Crane HS)

10 G Brennan Bechard Sr-2L (TR) 6-0 185 Lawrence, Kan. (Lawrence HS/)

11 F Quintrell Thomas Fr.-HS 6-7 240 Newark, N.J. (Saint Patrick HS)

12 G Brady Morningstar So.-1L(RS) 6-3 180 Lawrence, Kan. (Free State HS/)

14 G Tyrel Reed So.-1L 6-3 185 Burlington, Kan. (Burlington HS)

15 G Tyshawn Taylor Fr.-HS 6-3 180 Jersey City, N.J. (St. Anthony HS)

21 C Markieff Morris Fr.-HS 6-9 232 Philadelphia, Pa. (Prep Charter HS/)

22 F Marcus Morris Fr.-HS 6-8 225 Philadelphia, Pa. (Prep Charter HS/)

23 G Mario Little Jr.-TR 6-5 210 Chicago, Ill. (Washington HS)

24 G Travis Releford Fr.-HS 6-5 200 Kansas City, Mo. (Bishop Miege HS)

32 G Tyrone Appleton Jr.-TR 6-2 203 Gary, Ind. (Harmony Prep/Midland)

40 G Jordan Juenemann Fr.-HS 6-4 195 Hays, Kan. (Hays HS)

41 G Chase Buford So.-1L 6-3 210 San Antonio, Texas (Alamo Heights HS)

45 C Cole Aldrich So.-1L 6-11 245 Bloomington, Minn. (Jefferson HS)

54 C Matt Kleinmann Sr-3L (RS) 6-10 250 Overland Park, Kan. (Blue Valley West HS)

Head Coach: Bill Self (Oklahoma State, 1985)

Assistant Coaches:

Joe Dooley (George Washington, 1988);

Kurtis Townsend (Western Kentucky, 1982); Danny

Manning (Kansas, 1991)

UPCOMING GAMES

NOVEMBER

18 &FLORIDA GULF COAST (ESPNU) . 8 p.m.

24 &Washington (ESPN2) ........... 9 p.m.

25 &Florida/Syracuse .............................

(ESPNU/ESPN2) .......6:45/9:15 p.m.

28 COPPIN STATE (JTV) .......... 7 p.m.