A wild brawl erupted at the end of the rivalry game between Kansas and Kansas State on Tuesday.
With time ticking down in the No. 3 Jayhawks’ big 81-60 victory at Allen Fieldhouse, Kansas big man Silvio De Sousa made an emphatic block on K-State’s DaJuan Gordon, who had stripped the Jayhawks’ player near midcourt. De Sousa then stood over the fallen Gordon after the block, which the Wildcats seemingly did not appreciate.
Both teams rushed toward the scene, setting off a wild pushing and shoving match that spilled into the courtside area behind the basket. There were some punches thrown, and at one point De Sousa picked up a stool, though he didn’t appear to really do anything with it thanks to the intervention of KU assistant coach Jerrance Howard.
“The conduct of a few of our student-athletes at the conclusion of tonight’s game vs. Kansas State was simply unacceptable and not reflective of who we are,” Kansas athletics director Jeff Long said in a statement.
“Coach (Bill) Self and I will review the incident, along with the Big 12 Conference and Kansas State to determine appropriate consequences. There is no place for this conduct in college athletics or here at KU. I would like to apologize to the Big 12 Conference, Kansas State University, (K-State AD) Gene Taylor, (K-State coach) Bruce Weber and all fans for the lack of sportsmanship from members of our team this evening.”
It took a while for refs to sort out the situation after the players were eventually separated by coaching staffs and security. Both teams were summoned from the locker rooms as one-tenth of a second was added to the clock. Kansas State made one of its technical free throws to provide the final margin.
“Well, obviously it’s an embarrassment,” Kansas coach Bill Self said of the brawl. “It’s not something to be proud of. What happened showed zero signs of toughness. It’s a sign of immaturity and selfishness more so than toughness.”
De Sousa’s name was one that had surfaced in the FBI’s probe into college basketball. The NCAA had found that his guardian, Fenny Falmagne, had received a $2,500 payment from a “university booster and agent” and agreed to an additional $20,000 payment from the same individual and an Adidas employee for securing his commitment to Kansas.
De Sousa was initially ruled ineligible for two seasons, though he missed only the 2018-19 campaign as he was cleared to play this season after appeal.
Contributing: Associated Press