Thursday, March 5, 2009

Aldrich, Taylor cleared to practice after sustaining minor injuries at Texas Tech


Kansas University’s Cole Aldrich and Tyshawn Taylor, who sustained minor injuries in Wednesday night’s loss at Texas Tech, have been cleared to practice on Friday, coach Bill Self said Thursday night.

Taylor suffered a bruised left big toe and Aldrich a sprained right ankle. They both were evaluated by KU’s medical staff Thursday and deemed fit to practice and play.

The team watched film and participated in shooting drills during a light workout day Thursday.

Meanwhile, Self said walk-ons Brennan Bechard and Matt Kleinmann will definitely be in the starting lineup for Saturday’s Senior Day contest against Texas.

“I’ve always planned on doing that. That’s what we do here (at Kansas),” Self said of starting the seniors. “Both Matt and Brennan will start the game.”


exiledhawkfan 10 years, 11 months ago

Just my opinion...

In a game that will decide whether we share the Big XII title or whether it belongs to us alone, and in which a single possession could be the difference in the final score, is it really important to start two walk-ons? No disrespect to Matt and Brennan at all, but I have to believe their priority would be to win the conference outright over starting the game, or even playing for that matter. It seems to me we could honor them just as much in another way that wouldn't have the potential influence on the game that their starting the game could.

kujayhawkster 10 years, 11 months ago

Games aren't won at the tip-off. Games are won in the final ten minutes. They will do great and no matter what people think, this is a tradition here at KU.

jayhawk47 10 years, 11 months ago

considering how the regular starters played last night doubt they could do any worse.

pmohr13 10 years, 11 months ago

you don't lose a game in the first two minutes. And you're saying that someone that has given five years to this university and team doesn't deserve to start and play the first two minutes on SENIOR NIGHT, AKA their night?

Jim Pendleton 10 years, 11 months ago

It has been somewhat of a tradition to start the seniors for many years now, regardless of their playing status on the team. While there have been many years where it hasn't mattered who we start on Senior Day, I can think of several times similar to this year, where one might wonder why we are starting walk-ons in such an important game. Most have worked out ok.

The one that stands out the most was 1995 where we were tied with OSU and whoever won the last game would win the league. We not only had walk-ons start, but at least one of them scored early in the game (someone smarter than me will have to refresh our memories on who that was). By the way, we won the game and another league title. I also remember that Big Country had zero points that day.

Look at it this way. Kleinmann has been with the program five years, and a win Saturday will make him a part of five league titles. I guarantee he will be fired up to help the team be a part of that. He just might stuff ol' Dexter Pittman a time or two. I can see this also - Bechard to Kleinmann alley oop on the first play (whoops, hope I didn't just divulge our strategy early on).

Ok I am getting ahead of myself, but don't be surprised if you see one or both make a contribution. Heaven forbid the first minute or so doesn't start the way we want, I think we count on Coach Bill to make the appropriate subs. Rock Chalk and best of luck to our Seniors.

exiledhawkfan 10 years, 11 months ago

a few replies...

  1. I'm not saying I don't understand where you guys are coming from and why Matt and Brennan are starting...I get it.

  2. I'm not saying I think it absolutely WILL make a difference, I'm saying that yes, it could.

  3. I agree--Matt and Brennan could actually contribute, whether it be due to fate, being jacked up for the game, luck, or whatever. Unfortunately, there is a reason why they are walk-ons though (don't get me wrong, they'd both ball me), and them not hurting us while they're in the game WOULD be helping us.

  4. No, games aren't won in the final 10 minutes, they are won over the course of 40 minutes...otherwise they'd only play 10 minute games.

  5. I know what tradition is, and I know that is one thing that makes Kansas basketball so special. I also know that sometimes a "tradition" can get in the way of the greater good (in this case, an outright conference championship). Again, notice I said CAN rather than WILL.

Again, no disrespect to Matt and Brennan, but I think we could honor them in a way that not only MIGHT not influence the outcome of the game, but would be GUARANTEED to not influence the outcome of the game.

Rock chalk.

trader 10 years, 11 months ago

Coach Self says they are going to start and that is great stuff. After 4-5 years of running Coach Self's game strategy and executing it practice after practice I am sure Matt and Brennan know well what to do.

I can hear their names being announced now and it is gonna be GREAT !

"That is what we do here at Kansas." Enough said !

DSommersby 10 years, 11 months ago

Glad to hear Cole and Tyshawn should be okay. Hope the guys get their rest and refocus their eyes on playing KANSAS basketball this Saturday.

Brennan and Matt will do fine. They have earned the start for senior day. I remember when Scott Novosel got the senior start and he was the only Jayhawk to not let Randy Rutherford score that day in his opening minutes. Rutherford finished with 48, but the Jayhawks still prevailed!

Ed Fox 10 years, 11 months ago

My response - I don't care if it makes a difference. I just don't. This is KU. We start seniors on Senior Night. It's how we show respect to those who have helped build this program. Both Matt and Brennan were key players in developing last year's team into National Champions. They have earned the right to do what they certainly always expected to do - start on senior night. I'm sorry, some things are bigger than one win and KU is bigger than any game. These kids are part of KU, this tradition is part of KU, and Coach rightfully decided that honoring them and their contributions was worth any risk that we get blown out in the first 3-4 minutes so badly that we can't make it up.

littlehawk 10 years, 11 months ago

I totally agree with starting with the seniors on their night. They practice hard everyday, They deserve to play starters or not!

exiledhawkfan 10 years, 11 months ago

Okay, here's all I'm saying...from an emotional/sentimental standpoint I agree with you guys--from a basketball standpoint, I completely disagree because it does not absolutely maximize our chance to win the game. That is simply not arguable. Furthermore, you earn a starting role by giving your team the best chance to win a basketball game, not by just being on the team several years. Nonetheless, I wish Matt and Brennan all the best, and I'm betting that at the end of the day it won't affect the game (...I hope...).

Again, Rock Chalk.

exiledhawkfan 10 years, 11 months ago

Hey Banner, I posted that last one before yours was up. Just wanted to say that what you said actually made me feel a whole lot better about the thought of M and B starting. Your post makes a lot of sense and does readjust the perspective a bit. Well said my friend...

Ed Fox 10 years, 11 months ago

On Senior Night, as a senior, you earn your starting spot by giving all you have for 4 (or 5 in Matt's case) years. That's it, that's the way it's been and obviously Coach Self thinks that's the way it's supposed to be. I think he's right. Again, KU is bigger than having "the best chance to win" this one game. It's also Coach's starting spot to give and he made his decision. I'm also not totally sure that respecting the tradition and using the emotion of Senior Night isn't a good thing.

Ed Fox 10 years, 11 months ago

We're all fans exiled, so no negative feelings here. Glad we could find some agreement and hope you at least feel cool with it, even though you think it might not be the most competitively strategic thing to do.

exiledhawkfan 10 years, 11 months ago

...that said, I'd still rather the best 5 players start, and the best rotation play until the game is no longer in doubt. :-) Don't hate me, just my take. WINNING is 99% of building "tradition" imho.

Dillon Davis 10 years, 11 months ago

This is SENIOR night. The seniors deserve to play. Do you know how all the starters from last year and this year got so good? Those guys on the bench. They scrimmage them everyday and those scrubs work their butts off to make this team better, to make the starters better. They deserve as much credit as the starters do for the success of this season and seasons past.

Dale Kroening 10 years, 11 months ago

This is Kansas, thats what we do. Nuff said. They've surely earned the right to start 1 game and in no way will it win or lose the game for us, PERIOD. Great decision coach!

exiledhawkfan 10 years, 11 months ago

...and again, as soon as I repost, I say to you "well said" for your next post. :-) As you can probably sense, I'm torn (as I suspect we all might be deep down to some degree if we're honest) about the issue. I suppose it really doesn't matter what I think, so I should cross my fingers and simply trust that Kansas basketball will once again take care of itself on Saturday, and as you say, show that it is bigger than any one player, team, game, or even season. Again, as you put it, I can absolutely be "cool with it". :-)

Rock Chalk, and thanks for the discussion 'hawk fans.

Lance Hobson 10 years, 11 months ago

Of course it's the right choice to start the seniors, that is a tradition and should never change. They are Kansas basketball players and wouldn't be on the team if they couldn't get it done.

These are the traditions that make college basketball what it is. Even if this game really mattered, the seniors would take their rightful spot on the floor at the start of this game.

kw11b2p 10 years, 11 months ago

Matt and Brennan, without a doubt, have earned the right to start in this game. The significance of this game should not and does not diminish their contributions to KU basketball over the past years. I would lose respect for both Bill and the program as a whole if the decision were anything else. Tradition and personal sacrifice should be honored and respected........that's what makes KU basketball GREAT.

Rock Chalk

Alex Wishart 10 years, 11 months ago

are we really debating this? it's coach's decision and he makes a crap load of money to make those decisions. if you even think of questioning this tradition or HCBS's decision to continue it then you need to check your loyalty to Kansas. as was proved the other night, it's hard to beat a home team on senior night. maybe Brechard will go 14 of 17 from three.

exiledhawkfan 10 years, 11 months ago

Alex, It's called a message board--for discussion...welcome to the concept. And "check your loyalty to Kansas"? Dude, are you serious? With all due respect get a clue...and no, I don't think Bechard will go 14 of 17 from three.

exiledhawkfan 10 years, 11 months ago


"It takes some real character to ride the pine all the time but still remain focused and positive."

Well said, and I couldn't agree more.

Don Everett 10 years, 11 months ago

Regardless if KU wins or loses Saturday, they are still 2009 Big 12 Champions, tied or outright.

Regardless of the outcome Saturday, they will be the # 1 seed in next weeks tournament.

Stay with traditioin, let Matt and Brian start.

Dirk Medema 10 years, 11 months ago

This game is irrelevant if the non-seniors play up to par in the next to last game. M&B know how to run the O and will be jacked to give the effort necessary to play D and rebound. Their as good as players on other teams that have won games in this conference, especially on Sr Night, so there is no reason to believe they will be a liability Saturday, even beyond it being the right thing to do.

Hawktacular 10 years, 11 months ago


Perhaps, just perhaps, both are reasons that Jayhawk has been exiled.

Hawktacular 10 years, 11 months ago

An old college friend told me today that if we win on Saturday they are going streaking through the quad to the gymnasium.

She's a TEN and her friends aren't bad either, so make it happen fellas.


live4h2o 10 years, 11 months ago

Exiledhawkfan, Allow me to "honor" you and your idiotic comment: You sir, are a moron. KU has ALWAYS started all of their seniors on senior night. This is far from the first time it was done with a share of the title on the line. Example, in 1995, KU played OSU on senior night and the winner was the Big 8 Champion - all the seniors started, including walk-on Scott Novosel. And in this case, we already have a share of the title.

not_important 10 years, 11 months ago

jayhawkjim80- you picked the Senior Day game I was rememebering as well.

1995 was a critical game against OSU who had beaten us pretty handily down in Stillwater earlier that year on a January Big Monday game where Reeves went for 33 and 20. Now on the last game of the season we were starting Greg Ostertag, Greg Gurley, and walk-on Scott Novosel along with freshman Raef LaFrentz and sophomore Jacque Vaughn in a game that would determine the outright champion of the Big 8.

I don't believe Novosel scored in the first 2+ minutes of play, but he was guarding Randy Rutherford. Rutherford didn't score a point in those first few minutes, but once regular starter Jerod Haase was inserted into the game, Rutherford exploded for 45 points. We got our revenge against Reeves by holding him scoreless. What a great game. Big 8 champ KU 78-OSU 62. That was in the middle of 7 conference championship seasons in 8 years.

kcphantom 10 years, 11 months ago

Here's a great video of Scott Novosel from Senior Night against OSU:

Ed Fox 10 years, 11 months ago

Seriously people, exiled is expressing a simple opinion. Clearly, it's not an opinion I agree with, but it is by no means a flaming opinion or bashing one of the players or coaches. It's not like he's an MU or KSU fan over here, he's a KU fan that just wants the team to win and to get that full championship. He's just philosophically approaching this from a different place - competitive positioning vs. the tradition that we're tall talking about. There's no reason to call him an idiot or say the stupid other things that have been said about him.

Jared Grillot 10 years, 11 months ago

I understand the opinion, and if we were talking about the NBA, where its all about $$$ and winning and business, then I would say, yes, we want to play our best players, regardless of any sentimentality. But we're not talking NBA, we're talking about college kids. And in this case, unlike a lot of other Senior Days, we are talking about seniors who have ALWAYS ridden the bench, never gotten to hear their name announced in the starting lineup, ever. We aren't just playing a game, we're honoring our student athletes who have paid their dues and are graduating, including an Academic All Big XII in Matt Kleinmann in arguably one of KU's most gruelling majors, architecture.

This is about honoring loyalty and sacrifice, and we are not, I repeat, not going to somehow lose the game if they start... that's not even reasonable.

And frankly, **I would rather lose, than not start the Seniors on Senior Night**

That honor and loyalty and the pride of being a Jayhawk are worth so much more than one win. Congratulations Seniors!

Rock Chalk Jayhawk!

Jared Grillot 10 years, 11 months ago

And no, you're right, there should be no name calling here. However, the question that was asked was whether it was really that important to start these two seniors, and the answer is, unquestionably, yes.

Lin Rahardja 10 years, 11 months ago

Senior night will be meaningless without seniors starting, Mr. Bechard and Mr. Kleinmann will do just fine, these guys can ball too. If you have any doubt, you should consider challenging them one on one. KU has many great traditions, this is one that we must preserve. We can still beat Texas with them in the line up. Go Hawks!!!

jaybate 10 years, 11 months ago

The short-term, bottom-line mentality is what delivered the USA and the world to the economic and political messes of today. Please do not apply it to KU basketball.

The seniors should start their last games. I would even take it a step further. They ought to be substituted for only based on the score. Let'em play as long as the score stays even or KU ahead. If that were a half, or a whole game, let it be.

Things like Latenight, last-game starts for seniors, walk-ons, post-game hand-shake lines, press conferences, and John Brown signs are what spell the difference between a living myth and just another entertainment business.

Societies need living myths to be healthy, happy places in the arduous routine of daily life in good times.

Societies need living myths to help them survive economic warfare and the suffering and oppression it afflicts in bad time.

Societies need living myths to help them survive foreign occupations.

Don't tread on KU basketball with short-term, bottom-line hand-wringing about winning margins the last game of regular season.

Of course basketball games are sensitively dependent on initial conditions. Of course we could lose the game, even a league title, by doing it. Perhaps this is why we don't start them the last game of the NCAA tournament. But the possibility is slim, and because of the emergent complexity of a basketball game, almost impossible to quantify the risk, or benefit, of in the final score. Who knows? Maybe starting the seniors is such a good and loving gesture that it actually motivates the entire team to play harder and better, because they are part of an organization that cares about people, and not only about final scores.

The point is: doing this feeds the living myth, and probably poses little risk to the bottom line.

Wisdom advises to enjoy something good that poses a risk worth taking.

goshenjhawk 10 years, 11 months ago

To those above who responded to Exiled's post with name calling and other negative posts -- why? These message boards are for expressing opinions and one of the reasons I enjoy this particular site is the civility of discussion. It gives me faith in my fellow jayhawks.... that indeed they don't sink to the depths of say -- a Mizzou fan. So Alexhawk when you question Exiled's loyalty and the others call names... You are the ones who sound stupid. Get a life! I didn't agree with Exiled either because I believe that the Kansas tradition is greater than one game, but he debated like a gentleman and a true Jayhawk. You should give it a try.

exiledhawkfan 10 years, 11 months ago

My goodness people...I go to bed and get up and in the meantime, people have crawled out of the woodwork to crucify me. Jeez. It amazes me how incapable some people (Jayhawk fans or not) are of having a simple conversation in which you can be respectful, engaging and respectful of everyone involved, even if you disagree. Thank God for BannerforKirk and jgfrompk...thanks for the sane responses to someone you disagree with my fellow 'Hawk fans.

jwliddell "I really don't like you exiledhawkfan. Aside from your posts not making much sense, you're quite a douche when you manage to put together a coherent thought. just my take." That's a little bit sad my friend. You don't like me based on a few comments (quite benign comments I might add)? Thankfully, this neither makes my world rise or fall. It's quite pitiful calling someone a douche simply because they express an opinion (that even they aren't completely convinced of by the way--but this is a MESSAGE BOARD dude...) that you don't agree with. And as for being coherent, well...I just don't know quite where you're getting that. Even if I'm wrong (and I am my share of the time) my posts are far from much of the stuff I see on here filled with spelling and grammar issues that are filled with logical fallacies.

Hawktacular "Perhaps, just perhaps, both are reasons that Jayhawk has been exiled." Dude are you Robin to jwliddell's Batman? If you must know, I'm exiled in the Southeast among a bunch of SEC and ACC morons...for a job and family. That's why I've now been posting on this site for three days...not exactly the 'Hawk fan comaraderie I was looking for...

live4h2o Exiledhawkfan "Allow me to "honor" you and your idiotic comment: You sir, are a moron." Since you seem to have me figured for an idiot and a moron based on my posts, let me return the favor. You sir, are a frustrated and unfulfilled human being...nailed it, didn't I? Sorry I irritated you so bad with comments--I assure you they weren't meant to get you so riled.

So anyway, everyone have a great day, and if need be...take a deep breath and settle down when you read message boards.

Rock Chalk.

Alan Braun 10 years, 11 months ago

I agree with starting the seniors. In the grand scheme of things, this game doesn't matter that much. We'll get a 1st round bye in the B-12 tournament regardless, and we'll still get a higher seed in the NCAA than anyone expected at the beginning of the season. We've done better this year than anyone thought we would - in fact I can remember some discussions at the beginning of the season wondering if we'd even make the NCAA! There's no doubt about that now.

Sometimes you do things in life because they're the right thing to do, and to h*** with the consequences. If you don't live your life that way, your priorities are seriously messed up. Brennan & Matt have given their time, sweat & bodies to this program for 4-5 years now and they've earned the recognition. Both of them could've gone elsewhere and been starters, but instead they came here and mainly just played in practice, helping out the scholarship players. Bravo to them! Anyway if things start to go bad, and I'm sure they won't, HCBS can take a timeout & pull them in favor of the regular starters.

zissou 10 years, 11 months ago

"And frankly, I would rather lose, than not start the Seniors on Senior Night."

Couldn't have said it better, my friend. There's only one thing at Kansas that's more important than winning games, winning titles and hanging banners: tradition. If starting Bechard and Kleinmann will cost us this game (it won't), then I'm more than OK with taking that loss. By the time seniors hit this point in their careers, they've given more to the program than any of us will ever understand.

Congrats, Brennan and Matt. Enjoy this night. It's YOUR night.

And as a side note to Exiled, I understand your perspective. My apologies for the lunatics in our fanbase who don't.

youowethehawks 10 years, 11 months ago

Who's to say that starting the seniors doesn't give the team an emotional lift? Having these two, who have as much heart as anyone else on the team, get their day in the sun could prove to be a HUGE positive. Lord knows they put in more hours than anyone else on this team by a long shot, especially Kleinman.

I'm going to miss our red-headed human victory flag. I guess we'll by flying him a bit early on Saturday.

Thank you Brennan and Matt for working so hard at practice to make Kansas the powerhouse it has been over the last 4 and 5 years, respectively, Your passions for the game are unmatched and your energy from and off the bench has been great.

tis4tim 10 years, 11 months ago


Thanks for the link. Seeing Novosel's excitement as he leaves the floor is what Senior Day is all about. Good stuff, man.

goodriddanceroyboy 10 years, 11 months ago

I have been a KU fan since 1969 and i have only missed a few games in 40 years. There isnt a more loving or loyal fan than i am. With that said and understood i would like to say i agree with exiled and so would the rest of you if starting seniors on senior night actually did cost KU the title. If KU lost the title every year because of starting seniors we would all complain and never want the seniors to play. Winning is the KU tradition. Winning with class, style, great attitude and character. College sports are not little league and just because you are on the team doesnt mean you get to play. Every player that goes to KU knows when they sign up if they will be a starter, role player or just someone that sits on the bench. They could go to another school if playing time is what they want. The fact is they want the glory of going to KU. Personnaly i would choose playing time over sitting on the bench of a championship team. I think any senior that doesnt play very much would rather play 5 or 10 minutes at some point during the game and then go back in at the end of the game, if the score allows it. And yes i am so happy roy is gone!!!!!!!!!! KU made roy, he didnt make KU. He actually costs us several championships.

r1ck_jayhawk 10 years, 11 months ago

Maybe I am missing something here, but we are already Big 12 Champions (5th time in a row, thank you). We are not in danger of losing that title (unless I am terribly misinformed). There is no way that MU or OU can jump over us with only one game left and take that from us. Even if we lose and Misery and OU both win, we are still Big 12 Champions. Sure, we may have to share, but we can't not be Big 12 Champions. I don't want to share it with MU either, but they can't pry it from our cold, dead fingers either! AND...we are still going to be the #1 seed in the Big 12 tournament. I really have not seen the problem here. If Matt and Brennen didn't start it would be as if someone said that seeding in the NCAA tournament is more important than all of their YEARS of blood, sweat and tears that they have contributed to this wonderful game and this wonderful institution. Even if we lose to Texas (which, if we resemble the body snatchers that played in KU uniforms on Wednesday night, we very well might) we still win in the end. They start, I will cheer for them and Coach (if not the 2 Seniors we are talking about) will know when to make the substitution. Because, I would be willing to lay a very large wager, that although the excitement of starting the game at the college that they love may be a bit overwhelming, if they are outmanned and know that they aren't helping the team, they are going to be the first ones to ask to be replaced. That is the way their hearts work. Team first, personal glory second.

Rock Chalk! sssssssssssssssssssskawks!

Mark Bowers 10 years, 11 months ago

exiledhawkfan... Fans like you are pathetic. I mean, this team means so much to you, that you end up forgetting the fact that you're just a fan and that is it. You're not a player or part of the team and never will be. The walk on's might not be the best on the team, but they've put in a ton of work just to sit on the bench and all you care about is making sure you're not let down by a lose. Expand your life, there's more out there than KU basketball. This applies to all that have blurred the line between fan and fanatic.

Pam McCormick 10 years, 11 months ago

Just because Self starts Matt and Brennan doesn't mean they will play the entire game. They will be announced as starters and then play a few minutes. It is their night for glory and they certainly deserve it!!!!!!!

Robert Murphy 10 years, 11 months ago

Let's face it they can't play any worse than Collins and Aldrich did in their last game.

exiledhawkfan 10 years, 11 months ago

Bowers79, I'm pathetic? That's really what you got from this message board, that KU basketball is all there is to my life? Didn't do real well with the whole comprehensive reading thing in school, did ya? I'm discussing Kansas basketball...that's what fans do--and is what you choose to do when you post on this site as well by the way.

Do I love Kansas basketball? Yes. Is it (even near) all my life consists of? Not even close. Only a pompous prick or someone who simply isn't real bright (could be a little of both gathering from your post) would assert otherwise based on the content of this message board. Get a clue my friend.

To Zissou, thank you for the civil words. It's good to know there are people who understand decency and kindness within the fanbase they belong to.

To goodriddanceroyboy, it's nice not being completely alone. :-) Thanks for having the courage to voice agreement after what had already been spewed on the board by a few knuckleheads!

Rock Chalk, beat Texas.

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