OTC: Bill Self & Kietzman Continue To Differ On Embiid’s Injury / Elijah Johnson Is Shaka Real

“(Joel Embiid) is not going to play this weekend. (It’s the) same as we’ve said all along. He’s not going to play. I’m not saying there couldn’t be some miraculous act occur, but we’re certainly not planning on that, nor expecting it. Nothing’s changed.”
Bill Self, speaking to the media after arriving in St. Louis for KU’s NCAA tourney opener against Eastern Kentucky this Friday, KUSports.com
GH: Self seems adamant to refute any notion that he was quoted saying he was 100% confident Embiid would be back for postseason play. I don’t understand why he thinks he needs to reassure us that “nothing’s changed.” Did Self listen to Kevin Kietzman’s show on the drive over to St. Louis?

“We don’t really need to hear from the medical team. (Embiid) CAN play. We just need a decision. We know he CAN play. That’s been established. You can play with a fracture. … If Bill Self is making the decision, that kid’s playing. If Joel Embiid’s dad is making the decision, I don’t think he’s playing. … It’s not medical clearance. It’s a decision. The medical people have already said you can play with it. That’s all done.”
Kevin Kietzman, 810 AM
GH: Kietzman went KK again Wednesday when he spent the Jack Harry hour beating this topic into an ear-numbing drone. Kietzman, despite having no facts on the medical status of Embiid, spoke as if he was privy to all of Embiid’s doctor’s findings.

“Here’s what I know about Kansas basketball. It’s ALWAYS Bill Self’s decision! I rest easy knowing that. This is weird. You’re not even remotely curious as to who is calling this shot (on whether or not Embiid plays)? Who’s in charge of this? I would LOVE to know who’s in charge of this. I just want to know who. You would think there’s a lead person. We’re going to find out. It’ll all come out. We’ll find out who this was and what this was and I think it’ll be very, very interesting.  … I want to know who’s making the decision. That’s all I want to know! Who? Who? Who? Who’s making this decision? … I want to know who. I just want to know who! This is the biggest story of the tournament!”
Kevin Kietzman, in a conversation with a very unimpressed Jack Harry, 810 AM

“That’s speculation on your part. Bill Self’s going to have the official word from the medical people, Kevin, so what difference does it make? … I understand, Kevin. You’ve got a job to do. I think we make a bigger deal out of this just wondering what you said.”
Jack Harry, after Kietzman declared that if the decision was left to Bill Self, Embiid might be playing Friday or Sunday, 810 AM

“He’s already been told last week that he’s clear to play.”
Kevin Kietzman, 810 AM
GH: Kietzman kept repeating this like it was true. What I read last week from Embiid’s doctors was that they all agreed he had a stress fracture in his lower back. KK interprets that report as “cleared to play?” This from a guy who turned a hug from Tim Grunhard into a story about being held upside down over a balcony railing. 

“How do you know that? How do you know that? What (Self) told the media? He doesn’t always tell the media exactly how it’s going to be. No coach does!”
Jack Harry, to Kevin Kietzman, 810 AM
GH: Harry has stepped up his game with Kietzman the past few weeks. He appears fed up with playing the role of KK’s doddering stooge.

“(Embiid’s) doing really well, but we’ve told him we were not going to put him on the practice floor until he does really well with the rehab. That’s what the doctors have told us, and that’s been the game plan all along. So he’s not far away from being out there in some form or fashion, but probably not contact (drills), at least for a while.”
Bill Self, KUSports.com
GH: I don’t see where Embiid is going to be able to play even next weekend. He might, but if he does it will be a very, very controversial decision on somebody’s part. 

“I think everything is in place for (Embiid) to come back (to Kansas) next year but what if the family says, ‘You know what? You’ve got three or four million dollars here hanging over his head. If he comes back and isn’t very good or reinjures it, he could turn into Jerrod Sullinger and end up falling (in the draft).”
Jeff Goodman, in an interview on The Program, 810 AM

“(My freshman year) we were all thinking about the national championship. Everybody was thinking about Indianapolis and what we were going to do and how many tickets we would need for the game. People weren’t really focused. Looking at those three teams, Lehigh, Northern Illinois and Northern Iowa – being Kansas, being who we were, we overlooked them. We were the number-one team all year and rarely (had been) upset. So we overlooked (Northern Iowa). We never, ever thought that would be the last game that we would play.”
Elijah Johnson, former KU guard, on The Border Patrol, 810 AM
GH: The Border Patrol has invited the former Jayhawk to be an NCAA analyst throughout the tourney. Elijah speaks very freely about his days at KU and some of his comments Thursday morning were very interesting. Read on. 

“My sophomore year (against VCU) I feel we were focused. I don’t feel we were serious. I feel we knew what the goal was and I thought that we played toward the goal and I thought that it was team basketball. But at some point I feel that we broke down. And when we broke down there was really no recovering from it.”
Elijah Johnson, on KU being upset by Shaka Smart’s VCU team, 810 AM
GH: Neither Nate nor Steven pushed EJ to explain the difference between being focused and being serious – which I believe needed explaining. It was not EJ’s only comment that was left unchallenged. Read on. 

“I won’t discredit the man (Shaka Smart). He had a good run. I think it’s so amazing that people can make their name off of us, though. Because of our slip up, his name is still relevant. But I don’t take any credit away from him. He does something to get them playing like Louisville every single game. He’s got them running everywhere.”
Elijah Johnson, 810 AM
GH: EJ thinks VCU and Smart are relevant merely because of a Kansas “slip up” in 2011? I think that is taking a lot of credit away from Smart. The guy is a good coach who has remained loyal to his kids, his program and his school. If beating Kansas is his greatest sin, he will be canonized in a number of states very soon.   

“I would think this will probably be as hot a ticket (demand) as we’ve had for any first-round site, with maybe the exception last year since we were playing in our home city (Kansas City’s Sprint Center) for the most part.”
Bill Self, KUSports.com
GH: No, he didn’t – did he? Bill Self just christened Kansas City, Missouri, “our home city?” Did Mayor Sly offer Kansas one helluva tax break to move their campus to Swope Park?

“It’s the people. I think that is the best thing about K-State. They are just good people that care. They want us to win, but also they just want us to compete and play hard and do it the right way. I think that is very refreshing.”
Bruce Weber, Kansas City Star
GH: I met Eric Stonestreet last November when we were lucky enough to hobnob with the cast of the sitcom, Modern Family, on their set in LA. I asked him about Kansas State and his love affair with his alma mater. “Man, there’s just something in the water out there in Manhattan that just makes you love that place,” he said. He then told me a great story about shooting a TV commercial last football season where the set had logos of a number of college teams but no K-State gear. It seems K-State had not approved the use of their logo for the shoot. Stonestreet immediately got out his cell phone and first called John Currie, KSU’s AD, but was not happy with Currie’s passive response. He then phoned Kirk Schulz, KSU’s president. Schulz got the paperwork signed, the K-State logo was added to the shoot and Stonestreet starred in the commercial. EMAW!

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About Greg Hall

Software guy who has been writing my Off The Couch column in KC newspapers, publications and websites since 1994. Has been bounced from some of the finest media establishments this side of State Line Road. Dad first and everything else second...and there are a lot of everything elses.
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62 Responses to OTC: Bill Self & Kietzman Continue To Differ On Embiid’s Injury / Elijah Johnson Is Shaka Real

  1. Arte says:

    Sudeikis didn’t actually go to KU. He’s just big fan.

  2. glorious uproar says:

    Robert Loggia, Mort Walker, David Koechner, Chris Cooper, Tom Berenger, fuckin Patton

    KU sucks

  3. matt-66 says:

    but… Misery got….BRANSON!!

    throngs of 85 yr old goobers roaming the streets at all hours.. 6:30pm..7:00 ..

    50’s country music in the air..

    there have even been reports of occasional late nite Branson revelers still going strong a 8:00 PM!!!

  4. Kansas Marine says:

    KK: “Here’s what I know about Kansas basketball. It’s ALWAYS Bill Self’s decision! I rest easy knowing that. ”

    “We don’t really need to hear from the medical team. (Embiid) CAN play. We just need a decision. We know he CAN play. That’s been established. You can play with a fracture. … If Bill Self is making the decision, that kid’s playing. ”

    According to KK – Bill Self makes every decision, and Bill wants Embiid to play. Yet Embiid is NOT playing this weekend. Kevin managed to contradict himself in the span of a minute.

  5. Smith says:

    Has Chuck always been this stupid?


  6. Harold says:

    WTF Greg! You usually have your blog out by now. Do you mind telling us if it isn’t going to happen or be so late.

Comments are closed.