Kansas forward Perry Ellis played his final home game Saturday. No, it's legitimate. He won't be eligible, finally, when opponents visit Allen Fieldhouse next season.
Ellis has been a huge success and a big contributor in each of his four years in the Kansas lineup, which has led fans of other teams, opposing players and coaches and even his own teammates and coaches to joke about how it seems like he's been in a Kansas uniform forever.
When it came time for Ellis to address the crowd Saturday in the traditional senior night speech after an 85-79 win over Iowa State, he decided it was his turn to make a few jokes about the subject and they went over well.
“You know, many people say I’ve been here forever, and you know they’re right,” Ellis said. “I got the chance to play with Wilt Chamberlain, Danny Manning. You can ask him. (Manning) is up there. You can ask him.”
Later he added: “You know, I’ve been thinking. Since I supposedly have unlimited eligibility. Why don’t I just come back again next year?”
Kansas coach Bill Self credited Ellis with making the play of the game late in the contest by getting on the floor to keep possession of the ball. His effort led to a Kansas basket and helped Kansas pull away.
"But, there at the end he really locked it in and guarded and made some great plays," Self said. "We take him for granted because he's so consistent, but what a career he's had. We've had some unbelievable regular seasons but we haven't closed them all. There's still something to say about his legacy and the other guys' legacy, by us finishing strong and really performing our best from this point on."
The Jayhawks are the No. 1 team in the polls, the top seed in the Big 12 tournament and are expected to be the top overall seed in the NCAA Tournament barring an early exit next week in the conference tournament in Kansas City.
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