Missouri and Kansas have announced officially that the two long-time rivals will meet again on the basketball court Sunday, October 22nd at the Sprint Center in Kansas City. The game will tip off at 3:00 and all proceeds will go to hurricane relief efforts.
The news, first reported by Carrington Harrison of 610 Sports and Soren Petro of 810WHB in Kansas City, came out on Thursday that the two teams were in discussions to stage the exhibition game. PowerMizzou.com reported yesterday evening that the last hurdle was getting NCAA clearance because Division I teams are not allowed to play exhibition games against each other.
"The opportunity to use the platform of college basketball to help so many people in need is the most important aspect of this event," Mizzou head coach Cuonzo Martin said in a release. "Buy tickets to this game, but also please donate if you are able to, as there are people in Texas, Florida, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands who need our support. This scrimmage will not only be fun for fans of Mizzou and Kansas, but also for people all over the world."
"The opportunity to make an impact on those suffering as result of the hurricanes, through the game of basketball, is a great opportunity for our program," Kansas coach Bill Self said in the same release. "When I brought the idea to our administration we immediately decided that, if we were going to do this, it needed to be selfless, impactful, and there could be no recognized revenue as a result of the competition. With that in mind, I contacted Coach Martin and discussed the possibility of us playing an exhibition game for the benefit of so many affected by the catastrophic storms. We both felt that this would be a great opportunity to impact others."
The schools will split the 18,000 tickets available and each school's athletic department will handle sales. Tiger Scholarship Fund members will have the first opportunity to buy tickets from Mizzou's allotment. Those opportunities will be based upon donor rank. A limited number of tickets will also be made available to Mizzou students.
Any tickets remaining from Mizzou's allotment will go on sale at 10 a.m. Wednesday, October 18th at sprintcenter.com. The game will not be televised or streamed online.
The Tigers and Jayhawks played at least twice every year from 1907 to 2012. The all-time series has featured 268 total games with Kansas leading 172-96. They have not met since February 25, 2012, when Kansas overcame a double-digit deficit to win 87-86 in overtime in Lawrence. That came three weeks after Marcus Denmon led Missouri back from a late deficit in the second-half with a barrage of three-pointers to beat the Jayhawks 74-71.
Following that season, the Tigers left the Big 12 for the Southeastern Conference and Kansas dug in, refusing to play the Tigers in either football or men's basketball.
"Everybody deserves the right to do what is best for them. Everybody deserves that," Self said back in 2012, days before that final game. "So if Missouri makes a decision that's best for them, hey, I don't have one problem with them making that decision that's best for the University of Missouri. Zero.
"But it does change the way it was. Bottom line, it changes the way it was."
The issue flared up again over the summer--as it has every few months since the conference move--when former Missouri Chancellor R. Bowen Loftin made headlines by calling for a rivalry renewal, perhaps even at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City: “The problem was a man named Bill Self who made it very clear this wasn’t going to happen.”
Self fired back a few days later in the Topeka Capitol-Journal: “Tell the ex-Missouri chancellor that I coach basketball, not football. That we would never play a game in Arrowhead or even discuss it. It’s too cold. We play our games indoors. But (I) look forward to meeting him someday if he’s ever in Lawrence.”