Kansas basketball players are going to get some great experience and a once-in-a-lifetime trip next year.
The school has announced the men's basketball team will represent the United States at 2015 World University Games in South Korea. The event runs from July 3-14 of next year. Many schools sought to be chosen, but Bill Self's bunch gets the nod.
"We are thrilled to have this opportunity," Self said via statement. “It is a unique opportunity where a school will represent our country in the World University Games as opposed to a select team. I can't see anything but positives. We as an amateur basketball team could not get better competition. Our players are really excited about getting the opportunity to represent our country in games basically against professionals from around the world.”
It is an interesting approach. Instead of choosing a team of college-age all-stars, one team gets picked. Fair? It's happened before. Northern Iowa got the nod in 2007. The WUG, which is played every two years, will have 24 teams split up into pool play of four groups of six. It's similar to how the World Cup is assembled.
Per WUG rules, only players born between Jan. 1, 1990, and Dec. 31, 1997, are eligible for next year's competition. Twelve players from the team can be picked to play.
"It's also auspicious that the 2015 games will be held in South Korea, which is home to a strong group of KU alumni and to several of our university partners," KU Chancellor Dr. Bernadette Gray-Little said via statement.
South Korea a hub for Jayhawk alumni? Who knew.