The Kansas basketball program will soon be representing the United States in an international competition. The first question: What jerseys will Kansas wear?
Kansas announced Monday that it will participate as the United States representative in the 2015 World University Games next July in Gwangju, South Korea. The competition will run July 3-15.
KU is believed to be the first college program to represent the United States at the event. In the past, the United States team has drawn from all over college basketball.
KU athletic director Sheahon Zenger and head coach Bill Self will join Craig Jonas, the deputy head of the USA Delegation, in an official announcement on Tuesday on the KU campus.
“We were excited to do it, no question,” KU associate athletic director Jim Marchiony said.
The relationship between Kansas and the USA delegation, Marchiony said, came together in the last few weeks. USA basketball officials expressed an interest in having one college team represent the United States at the event, and Kansas was pleased to have the opportunity.
For now, Kansas officials aren’t certain if the KU team will wear its regular Kansas uniforms or specific Team USA jerseys. The Jayhawks could also have international players — such as incoming freshman Sviatoslav Mykhailiuk — who would be ineligible to play for the United States in the competition.
In 2013, Davidson coach Bob McKillop coached the United States at the World University Games, guiding a roster that featured Creighton star Doug McDermott and Louisville sharpshooter Luke Hancock. and Former K-State coach Frank Martin was an assistant coach.
The United States team failed to medal after losing to Australia and Canada during the group stage.
This is not the first time the Kansas basketball program has been involved in an international competition. At the 1952 Olympics in Helsinki, Finland, members of Kansas’ 1952 NCAA title team — including All-American Clyde Lovellette — helped the United States take home the gold medal.