Kansas coach Bill Self said there was no intent to mock the NCAA with the program's controversial use of Snoop Dogg as entertainment at its Late Night show last Friday night.
The rapper's 35-minute performance included profane language, scantily clad pole dancers and fake $100 bills shot from a money gun. Self was featured in a promotional video earlier in the week wearing a chain with a dollar bill sign while wearing Adidas apparel to help promote the event, which is Kansas' annual season-opening unveiling of the basketball team.
Adidas representatives in the college basketball corruption case have been convicted in federal court of providing financial inducements to family members of recruits to help sway players decide to attend Kansas. The NCAA recently handed down a notice of allegations against the university and possible severe punishment could occur.
"I do not like the narrative that has been said concerning that with me, but I also understand I can't control what the media writes or their opinions," Self said during a press conference on Wednesday. "I do know and people that know me know that's not factually true in any way shape or form."
Self said he was miffed that the entertainer selected could be viewed as part of a plan to taunt the NCAA.
"I don't know how an entertainer would in any way, shape or form, be thought to be sticking it to anybody, including the NCAA, by having an entertainer perform," Self said. "That has actually been a narrative that some people have used since this.
"... If you've followed us, I do stuff for Late Night every year. This year was no different. I just happened to be wearing an Adidas shirt (in the video), who just happens to be our sponsor for our next 14 years that helped sponsor the event. It was innocently given to me and I just put it on."
Athletic director Jeff Long apologized shortly after Friday night's show for the content.
Meanwhile, sophomore point guard Devon Dotson doesn't understand why there has been such a fuss over the Snoop Dogg show.
"I didn't really get into that," Dotson said. "As a whole, Late Night was a great night for all of us, so we try not to focus on all that. We've moved on from that. We're not trying to focus on what happened in the past. I'm looking to play basketball here and try to get wins."
Self also had an opportunity to address the growing scandal in which the school's relationship with Adidas came under scrutiny during the federal investigation and ensuing trials.
Former Adidas consultant T.J. Gassnola testified that he made payments of $90,000 to the mother of former Kansas player Billy Preston.
Gassnola also admitted two payments totaling $22,500 were made from Adidas to Silvio De Sousa, a current Kansas player who was initially suspended for two seasons. Kansas appealed the second-season penalty and the NCAA recently ruled De Sousa is eligible to play this season.
During trial last October, an FBI wiretap was introduced in which Kansas assistant Kurtis Townsend and Adidas consultant Merl Code were heard discussing what was needed for highly sought recruit Zion
Williamson to sign with the Jayhawks. Williamson later chose Duke.
"We are aligned as a university, athletic department and certainly our basketball program," Self said of the situation. "There is still a story that hasn't been told and that would be our story. And that will be told in a way that is consistent with the NCAA process and when it's the right timing to do that. I very much look forward to that day. But right now we're locked up as we wait for that opportunity."
Dotson said the team won't be distracted as it moves toward the start of the 2019-20 campaign.
"Our main focus is how to improve every day as a team on the basketball court," Dotson said. "We don't get into any outside noise. You've just got to have that self discipline."
Self agreed, insisting there is no correlation between the allegations and the on-court product.
"My concern with this team is preparing them to have the best season we can possibly have and play as deep into March as we possibly can," Self said. "That's my focus. That's our players' focus. There's been nothing that has been stated to me by anybody that would temper that motivation or excitement to do that."
--Field Level Media