Kansas and Illinois schedule charity exhibition basketball game to raise money for Maui wildfire relief

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News: After the fire​​​​ Maui Hawaii

Illinois will host Kansas in a charity exhibition basketball game on October 29 at the State Farm Center in Champaign, Illinois, which will raise money for the ongoing relief efforts following the tragic wildfires in Maui, Hawaii. The preseason game was to be a closed scrimmage between the two programs but will now be open to the public for fans to attend.

The confirmed death toll from the wildfires has surpassed 100, according to CBS News, with more than 1,000 people unaccounted for as of earlier this week. The disaster has destroyed more than 2,200 structures.

“For decades, the Maui Invitational and the city of Lahaina have been very important to college basketball and our thoughts and prayers go out to that entire community as they recover from such an event so sad,” Kansas coach Bill Self said in a release announcing the event. . “Brad (Underwood) and I talked about how our private scrimmage could be an exhibition game to raise money to benefit to so many affected by the recent catastrophic fires in Maui. help this cause.”

Self returns to the sidelines for the first time since the end of the 2022-23 regular season after missing the Big 12 and NCAA Tournaments due to health issues. Kansas assistant coach Norm Roberts was the acting head coach and the Jayhawks fell to Arkansas in the second round to end their season.

Self has coached at Kansas since 2003 but previously spent three seasons as the coach at Illinois before being hired by the Jayhawks.

“It’s heartbreaking to see the loss of life and devastation from the Lahaina fires,” Underwood said in another release. “The Maui Invitational is an integral part of college basketball, and thinking of everyone on the island of Maui who has seen the impact of this tragedy. Scrimmage into a charity show is a way we can use our sport to make an impact. Attention should be paid this game, enhanced by Bill’s return to Champaign, will raise meaningful dollars that will go directly to helping the Lahaina community.”

Kansas enters the season as one of the top preseason teams in the country. The Jayhawks added former Michigan star Hunter Dickinson via the transfer window and return Dajuan Harris, Kevin McCullar and KJ Adams Jr. a team that finished 20-13 and reached the NCAA Tournament.

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