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Friday, April 9, 2010

Mayer

Tables, railings, KU in ’11

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Two technical aspects of college basketball keep bugging me as speculation broadens about next season and how Kansas fits into the 2011 Big 12 picture.

One item goes clear back to the Kansas-Missouri game at Columbia on March 6. KU’s Marcus Morris had a violent cranial collision with an “officials” table that looked as if it would gong him into the next century. Was the table too close to the combat court, and if so, was it as fully padded as it must be? If the answer is affirmative, no problem. If not, MU and every other school with tables in similar positions should get out the foam or something even friendlier to human body parts and provide the right protection. That one blow could have left Marcus addled for life. He and every player in any gym needs to be fully protected.

The second issue is whether KU can somehow provide handrailings in the aisles of Allen Fieldhouse. You don’t have to be a Mikhail Baryshnikov to get up and down those steps with ease or security, but it would sure help. I notice most all the first-class arenas featured during the NCAA Tournament had the railings, particularly the final setting in Indianapolis. Thing is, KU might lose a few revenue-producing seats to install solid railings, but the fear and misery eliminated could do wonders for the more feeble and unstable among us. Doubt the need? Ask some acquaintances if they have stopped coming to games because of the aisle perils, or that they dread another sortie into the Phog because of them. And a lot of such sources are not really old.

As for the KU team that will be sashaying around in no-railing AFH next season, I think it’s being blindly downrated in favor of the likes of nouveau riche Kansas State, Baylor and even rebuilding Missouri. Even with Cole Aldrich, Sherron Collins and Xavier Henry gone, I’m asking, “Who dat team gonna beat our Hawks?” Even if KU doesn’t add one other prospect to the roster. Indications are, coach Bill Self is about to sign some savior to take over the point guard slot, a la Derrick Rose, Tyreke Evans or John Wall. Note: Don’t shortchange viable candidates already in the stable. If there are no additions whatever, Kansas should be a contender not only for Big 12 but national honors.

Self put too much on Sherron Collins’ plate, and he wasn’t able to digest it suitably at crunch time. He’s a senior and done. I’m thinking whoever takes over the quarterbacking duties could do the team more good than Collins in his stretch-run slump. Sherron may struggle to stick in the NBA.

KU has the Morris twins, Jeff Withey, Thomas Robinson, Elijah Johnson, Tyrel Reed, Brady Morningstar, Tyshawn Taylor, Mario Little, Travis Releford and C.J. Henry due back, and if Self can’t fashion a major winner from that package, he should take a pay cut. Two star recruits could put more icing on that tasty holdover cake.

Sure, the league will be tough, but KU has the potential for another Top-10 status, and maybe a better chance to survive and advance in the NCAA Tourney without the Collins-Aldrich-Henry stay-or-go distractions.

This year’s erratic, lag-lag-lag-tie-then-lose team never got as steady and cohesive as next year’s might well do. Low-key KU tried to mail in the Northern Iowa victory, but UNI hijacked the postal truck.

Comments

Kye Clark 11 years ago

Pretty horrible. First of all, if Mayer has "acquintances" that have stopped coming to games because of railing issues, it makes me question their fanhood to KU in the first place (funny how he felt the need to qualify these people as not really that old). I live in Wichita and have got to go to only a handful of games in AFH over the years (maybe 4 games). Tickets are hard for me to find, atleast at a reasonable cost, combined with the cost of driving up there and back, maybe staying the night in a hotel, eating, etc. And here this guy knows people who apparently have the means & opportunity but are turning it down because of the lack of a railing? Have these people contact me Mr. Mayer, I'll gladly take any unwanted tickets off of their hands.

Then he offers some half-way decent analysis of this year & next year's squads, only to end with comments of "win or pay cut" and "This year’s erratic, lag-lag-lag-tie-then-lose team"...in our three losses was this every the pattern? Did we ever pull even late with Tennessee, OSU, or UNI?

JamesA 11 years ago

 They won't make any additions like hand railings inside the gym because if  KU made additions to the stands the entire inside of gym would have to be updated to comply with  today's handicap seating regulations.  A huge cost that the University can't address any time soon.  Learned of this during a tour of the Field House this fall.

 The Hawks don't need a hyped up PG/SG, not this year at least.  The team has the perfect amount of depth at the guard spot to keep a steady and competitive back court.  With Tyshawn, who has shown moments where he is the most talented player on the floor(just lacking some poise and confidence) to go with Elijah, who many people are excited about and add CJ(assuming he hangs around), we are fine at point guard.  The same goes for the SG where we have two veteran leaders, whose ceiling hasn't appeared yet. Then finally, Releford will jump in the mix, and perhaps on occasion see Mario at the 2, when Marcus is testing out the SF spot.

If KU gets another 1 and done guard, the team's guard spot will be clogged up by a "guaranteed playing time" freshman. The Hawks need this group of guys (especially the guards) to develop, since their entire careers thus far have been reliant on Sherron.  I think HCBS should hold off this season on that big name guy, and keep the spot open next year when this year's roster can utilize the available playing time and cement their roles on the team.

Kye Clark 11 years ago

Disagree about our guards. First of all, when you say our "two veteran leaders", I'm assuming you mean Brady & Tyrel. Brady has almost certainly reached the apex of his abilities. He's a 5th year senior. We likely saw him at his best during his junior season; last year he regressed on both ends of the court. Tyrel has been told since day 1 that his defense was what was keeping him off the court, and finally after 3 years he improved enough to be an above average defender last season. He'll also be a senior and we likely saw him at his best at the end of last year. If he carries that kind of performance into next season he will be a nice player off the bench, but that's it. Tyshawn's "moments"...I recall only one - when CS re-inserted him into the starting line-up, and that was @ home against Colorado. Other than that every time he tried to assert himself beyond that of a role player he crapped the bed. I don't want to let the success of next year's team ride on any of those guys' shoulders. We have EJ, who everyone's excited about, but does anybody KNOW how good he will be? He couldn't overtake TT, Tyrel, or Brady for any playing time last year despite the struggles of TT & Brady. Maybe he improves enough on whatever aspects of his game kept him out of the rotation, but again we don't know. Same goes for Travis. We didn't see him enough his freshman year, a re-loading year where he should have been able to grab playing time but didn't. So maybe the red-shirt year has improved him enough to where he can be counted on to contribute. Maybe. I don't anticipate ever seeing Mario at the 2.

As for bringing in 5 star recruits, something to consider is that with the NBA lockout pending, it's possible that any recruit that in another year would be considered a OAD might stay for 2 years. My feeling is you never pass up blue chip level talent, and if we were to do that this year you risk letting those guys go to another program and being there for two years, so KU would fall even further behind other programs competing for championships. Another thing is that right now we have 2 open scholarships. Don't sign anyone this year and then after next year we have 3 more scholarships opening up with Tyrel, Brady, & Mario being seniors. That's 5 open scholarships to try and fill next year, and that's assuming no one leaves early (like possibly Marcus) and no one transfers. That's a lot to try and replenesh with one recruiting class. We saw in '09 how difficult that was, as only the Morris twins have truly panned out. Tyshawn fell in our laps, and I almost wish he hadn't. Tyrone Appleton, Quintrell Thomas, & Releford couldn't crack the rotation in a rebuilding year when we lost all 5 starters, and Appleton & Thomas transferred.

Benjamin Piehler 11 years ago

good point on filling the scholarships

Kye Clark 11 years ago

I'm excited for next year, and I think some of the young talent will develop. However, there are just too many questions and too many guys with only "supporting cast" level talent to say "nah, we're good. We don't need any 5 star recruits."

P.S. Interesting note about the situation with the railings at AFH.

yates33333 11 years ago

I hope Mayer is right about next year's team. My big question is who will provide the scoring lost by the departure of Aldrich, X, and Collins? Self is enamored with defense, but offense is also the name of the game. Of course, when you get to the brass knuckles game of NCAA playoffs then strength, will, and defense prevail. Butler proved that hand checking and outright, openly pushing, nudging, and hipping opponents can carry a team a long ways in the bare knuckle brawl called March Madness.

rkatzfey 11 years ago

Bill Mayer is right and we all know it! He saw the slip coming. And he told you!

"Low-key KU tried to mail in the Northern Iowa victory, but UNI hijacked the postal truck." Too Funny Bill!

JHawk74 11 years ago

C'mon Yates33333

We have all kinds of offense next year. Marcus Morris will be the leading scorer for KU next year with 17-18 pts/game. Little will probably start at Sm Forward and average 12-13 pts/game. Taylor will start and average 10-11 pts/game. If Robinson starts he will average 10-12 pts/game. Markieff Morris will have a solid 8 pts/game off the bench. Reed and Morningstar off the bench combined will provide 12 pts/game. Releford will have 6-8 pts/game. CJ Henry and Johnson could add another 12-14 pts/game combined. I don't see a problem with the offense. If we get Selby or Lamb they could average 10-12 pts/game also. Where are the offense problems?

Benjamin Piehler 11 years ago

i dont think we necessarily need to sign anyone else, but i think it would help. i am sort of intrigued by a selby/lamb/knight (especially selby), I understand they arent the usual sort of player ku would go for. i like watching a little bit of explosive play.... im not saying we should be UK and rollover a freshman class every year. but signing a highly sought after recruit is good for the program; it says that this is where the talented players want to be. if we dont sign anyone, i fear nationally people might think that after our letdown season last year we are on a decline.

RockChalkGuy 11 years ago

No handrails. Quit trying to tinker with AFH. There's no shortage of demand on seats.

The addition of one top-level recruit is all we should get, but I wouldn't be concerned if we had to 'make do' with what we've got. None of the FF teams had a OAD.

Benjamin Clay Jones 11 years ago

As far as the handrail issue, leave the interior alone--it's perfect. Those who live in trepidation of mounting the steps at Allen could ask a kindly Samaritan for a hand, and the younger set should be attentive to their fellow human beings and proffer assistance if they see someone frail and tottering trying to climb the steps. Let's solve problems with human kindness, not metal railings.

63Jayhawk 11 years ago

Bill, I think you are spot on about the needs in the arena and the team.

Those steps in Allen Fieldhouse are steep, and handrails would help immensely for many of those who attend the games.

It is too bad that wisdom only comes with time. Many of our younger fans could certainly use the wisdom of age, and all of our older fans could use the vitality of youth.

William Weissbeck 11 years ago

I love all these comments about the quality/ability of our players. At some point it really is up to the coach. Apparently watching NIU and Butler taught some of you nothing. And then look at Duke - a thug at center, a pretty boy on the wing, and a scoring point guard that the NBA apparently doesn't care about. It's chemistry, style, take care of the ball and play the best defense you're capable of. This isn't the NBA.

Kye Clark 11 years ago

I didn't watch any Northern Illinois games this year (NIU)

Kye Clark 11 years ago

As for Butler & Duke, yeah that's what won this year, in one of the weakest fields in recent memory. Either of those teams get blown out last year by North Carolina, or two years ago by any of the Final Four teams, or Florida in '07 & '06. Those teams had all kinds of NBA talent on the floor. I'm not real comfortable just recruiting and playing guys who simply have "chemistry, style, take care of the ball and play the best defense you're capable of" and wait around for another weak field to try and take advantage of. Also got to remember Duke absolutely had the way cleared for them to make the Final Four. Those things you mentioned are important, but almost every year you're going to need some talent & athleticism.

Jeremy Wilhelm 11 years ago

Not to mention getting the luckiest draw to reach a championship game I've seen in the 20 years I've been watching the tournament. I really can't think of an easier road. Toughest games: a depleted Purdue, a decent Baylor team, and a depleted WVU and a bunch of cream puffs mixed in. Winning an NC is equal parts skill, talent, coaching and luck. Missing any of those components means your chances of winning are slim.

Alan Mills 11 years ago

I couldn't agree more. In fact, perhaps NOT being touted as the best team in the land will take a little pressure off the players and let them just play. The Jayhawks have plenty of talent coming back, and plenty of offensive weapons. Without the need to defer to Collins and Henry (X), the other players should feel more comfortable at the offensive end. And, without Collins getting beat to the basket every time, the team might be better on defense.

I heard someone comment during the season that the two players with the most NBA potential on the squad were Robinson and Johnson. Last I checked, they are both back next year. Like Aldrich did his freshman year, the Morris twins have spent time learning from an excellent defensive post player. And, I think we've all seen that they both possess far more offensive skill than Aldrich. Releford is a scorer and slasher. Little was the best player in the JUCO ranks when he arrived, then suffered injury. Reed can shoot it. Taylor's offensive skills aren't as strong, but Robinson wasn't the best offensive player on the floor either. Yet, he improved to the point where he could make big shots when needed. I am very optimistic about next year's team, without any big time recruits!

Kenneth Johnson 11 years ago

Bill,

I hadn't really thought about the need for handrails, but now that you mention it, I was reminded of my last visit to AFH. An extremely irritating woman who sat right behind me (constantly berating the other team and their players), almost took a header when she left to go to the bathroom. I'm sure there were folks in our area that were secretly hoping she would fall, but that's another story. I also saw some others who struggled getting up or down the stairs. So, perhaps you are right about the need.

Ken Johnson (KU MS '70) www.hoopszone.net

WilburNether 11 years ago

Good points by Mr. Mayer.

icehawkfan316 wrote: "...if Mayer has "acquintances" that have stopped coming to games because of railing issues, it makes me question their fanhood to KU in the first place..."

That is nonsense. There are too many fools who question one's loyalty, "fanhood," or whatever, if one makes negative but accurate observations about KU sports or athletes. The comment quoted above is a prime example.

The football stadium lacks railings also, and at one game I saw a woman slip and fall, and hurt herself badly. And she wasn't "elderly," either. The absence of railings in AFH is not only a potentially serious injury, but also a lawsuit, waiting to happen. Do you want to question her "fanhood," too? On more than one occasion, I've helped catch someone on an AFH staircase with no railings who was teetering and about to fall. Gee, I guess they must be bad fans too, huh?

The fact of the matter is that yes, AFH has tradition, history, and blah, blah, blah, but among the dozens of arenas around the country where I've watched college basketball, the two worst for fan safety and comfort are AFH and the gym at Maui.

And he's also right about the tables at courtside, which seem to be primarily about adding more advertising, and which do increase the risk of serious injury for athletes hurtling off the court, as happened with Morris. So there's another criticism that will open me up to fools who will question one's "fanhood."

Kye Clark 11 years ago

I'm sorry, but steep steps is not a reason to stop attending games. Period. Especially if his "acquintances" are not really all that old. Are the steps steep? Absolutely. Do I mind him pointing that out? No, so it is not on that "negative but accurate observation" that I'm calling them out. But what is "nonsense" is to stop coming to games all together. What's next? Fans not coming to games because of long lines? Ridiculous.

WilburNether 11 years ago

Wrong -- again..

You obviously have no clue what it's like to be handicapped in some way, whether it's age, disease, a disability, or for whatever reason, and to have to attempt to cope with an inherently unsafe means of getting to one's seat. You also obviously have zero empathy with people who face such difficulties.

That is your problem, and is certainly NOT a negative reflection on people who face such life challenges.

Thank goodness for the Americans With Disabilities Act, so that callous attitudes such as yours can no longer prevail.

Such attitudes about what "fanhood to KU" means are preposterous.

Kye Clark 11 years ago

Um...sorry but I failed to see anything in Mayer's article about these acquintances being handicapped, nor did I say anything calling into question handicapped individuals' fanhood. Point out where the article mentions the rails being necessary for handicapped individuals. What? You can't? Oh, guess it is your presumption about that is wrong. Stop trying to distort the conversation to fit whatever you think, whether it is about the issue or about me. Nice try. Feel free to come back when you have a real arguement and not a manufactured one.

jaygirl193 11 years ago

You're right, Mayer is wrong. The Fieldhouse is in compliance per the State Inspector -- though it's obvious several of its features are 'grandfathered' and would not be allowed in new construction today.

Still, elevators have been added, concourses widened, and patrons who cannot find their way to regular seats even with the new circulation upgrades can request accessible seating at the court level.

No major additions or changes can be made to the seating bowl at AFH without closing the facility to public events and building a new one. If that's what Mayer is calling for, then he should just come out and say it, instead of complaining that it doesn't have the features of the newer facilities used for the NCAA Tournament. (None of which are mentioned in the perennial SI and ESPN lists of "favorite college arenas" like Allen Fieldhouse is.)

As for the officials tables at the MU game -- yes, they were padded. Though I'm sure Marcus hurt his head, it wasn't a concussion. What sent him to the team trainers were the cuts he suffered from the broken acrylic advertising panel. If Mayer is going to call it out, at least he should get it right. That's the way to get results.

Oh, and "this year’s erratic, lag-lag-lag-tie-then-lose team" won THIRTY-THREE games with only 3 losses (that's a 91% winning percentage), its sixth consecutive league title, and another Big 12 Tournament. It was ranked #1 in all but 4 weeks of polls. That doesn't sound like an "erratic" losing team to me at all. It sounds like a rather consistent winner. Too bad it suffered its last loss in late March instead of late February.

Nick Cole 11 years ago

maybe your friend should learn how to walk down stairs. just kidding.

Ryan Mullen 11 years ago

Yes, but if we had handrails then you would have not been able to have that funny experiance to talk about.

Nick Cole 11 years ago

On a serious note: its really annoying how you have to preview your comment, then post your comment, then view your comment just to get back to the page you were on. Why cant we just have a post option from the start and have it automatically post it while keeping you on the current page? Is that too much to ask?

swjhawk 11 years ago

As to the railings issue, my observation is that the fans reflect the demographics of an aging country as the Boomers (the pig through the python) dominate all sorts of aspects in our daily lives. The peak year for boomer births was 1957 so this issue won't go away.

As to the team, I worried all year about it's up and down performance with all that terrific talent. If anyone could unlock young men's minds, they would be gazillionaires (and very successful coaches). The '08 championship team reminded me of "Blues Brothers" ("We're on a mission from God").

I love all the discussion about what we will do next year. Of course, nobody knows--as the late, great Roy Williams said when he was here (paraphrasing), "That's why we call them kids."

Larry Smith 11 years ago

What an original idea. Cough, cough....not.

Tony Bandle 11 years ago

As a Jayhawk diehard from1966 till forever, Allen Fieldhouse is a magical place with such incredible history that there is almost a paltible aura as you approach the building. It is a place I treasure.

As a 35 year registered architect whose primary professional goal is the Health, Safety and Welfare of the General Public it is a nightmare of Accessibilty violations including step height/width ratios, aisle widths, turning radii, improper handrail support.

The fallacy of perceived Accessibilty "intrusions' on the general public, does not take into account that these accommodations benefit everyone..not just the handicapped but the young, parents with kids, a fan with his armfull of refreshments, etc., etc.

Someone mentioned it's funny to watch someone fall [A quite disturbing comment in itself]. I am sure it isn't funny when it happens to you.

The previous poster was exactly right regarding the scope of a remodel, although all decisions are ultimately up to the local code officials to enforce the code or make an accomodation.

To modify the configuration of the seating at Allen to make it safer or not may be a statement of what today's public prioriites are. Does it have to be done? If not , should it be done anyway.

I say yes.

BCRavenJHawkfan 11 years ago

Just heard Calipari on ESPN basically admit that his style of play is taylored to OAD's. At least he feels like many, that these kids should be allowed to go NBA out of high school. Amazingly he thinks if they do go college they should stay 3 years.

jaybate 11 years ago

"...why not add to the environment by raising the noise level considerably by giving the first 10 perimeter rows to the students?"--slayr

Doing the above is absolutely essential to perpetuate The Legacy--the real goose that underpins the laying of the real golden egg.

No one can conceive of it right now, but KU will one day have another stretch of less than stellar teams. And when it comes the rich and the corporate will stop coming and those that do come will not stay to the end.

And the kids?

Unless the students have a chance to be up-close and personal with the game, i.e., unless they can be court-side, it will depend on what is the next best place to party?

What tided KU basketball through the down years was that each year the students, especially the frat houses, kept competing for the courtside seats and the incredible experience that they provided, win or lose.

The whole business of camping out over night for court-side seats to big games, started back in the early 1970s, as best I can recall, when I attended KU. The adults called us stupid then, but it was great fun and the court side seat it bought was worth ever shiver and kink in the spine that 3.2 beer could not medicate. It went on whether KU was so-so and when KU was good. I have heard things became much more fanatical later, but it was fanatical enough then. As I recall it, we did it, because it was a trick we had learned to get good seats for rock concerts. Nothing worth doing is very intellectual in the beginning. It springs from the excitement centers of the brain, and the loins. Yes, the tents and sleeping bags were not always celibate digs.

The students had a ball at the games, too, regardless of how good the teams were. And part of the fun was the "intense" interaction with the visiting team and its coaches. It was so intense Bob Knight refused to come back, and after discovering what a truly bad actor Knight was at IU in subsequent years, I keep Knight's decision not to return to AFH during those years as a feather in my cap. I learned he was a louse sitting two rows behind him. And I learned Digger and Adrian Dantley were jerks, too. I learned Jack Hartman was a class guy. I learned some of the refs really did have it in for Owens and KU. I learned there really were refs who gave KU breaks. I learned the refs with powerful personalities and flamboyant styles could shape a game even more than the coaches. I realized coaches and refs and players are humans and each has good games and bad games. I learned these are not pixel patterns on a screen. And they are not ants in the distance, as seen from the cheap seats. These are amazing, but also utterly human and usually flawed beings.

jaybate 11 years ago

There is no better basketball education, no better way to build an intelligent fan base among alumni, than to let KU students sit courtside behind the opposing team's bench for 4 years. No matter how much the students will take it for granted, no matter how often they will cause problems, these court-side seats, and the kitchen table, are the real training grounds of those who comprise The Legacy. Lew hasn't figured out how to monetize the kitchen table chairs yet, but he is doing a very good job of making it rain at court-side. Bully for him. We need cash. But we also need an experienced and knowledgeable alumni and media.

Even today I can tell some difference in level of appreciation and understanding of the game between the board rats that were treated right years ago and those that have been shafted by the system in recent years.

Some of the younger persons today are way smarter than the old folks in terms of the statistics and rosters and digitized information about the game. And some few get lucky and find ways to get up close and personal with the game. But many, many, many of them have been cheated by the system and never spent four years behind the opposing teams bench the way I got to do, simply because of the years I happened to attend KU. They haven't felt the game up close and personal for an extended period of time.

To see the opposing teams come in up close and personal for four years, to see the game up close, to feel the intensity of the exertion of effort, to hear the agony of injury, the grunts from shoves and thrown elbows, to see the fear in the players eyes when they face their coaches after bad plays, to see the humanity of these players and coaches up close for four years, to actually see plays diagrammed as the players see them and then see the players try to go out under the greatest of pressure and execute them, is to forever hold them close to one's heart, to forever respect them for how hard they work, and for how often they succeed, and to forever disrespect those few that throw away the opportunitity of a life time by going through the motions. It is to literally hate coaches that do not maintain the highest standards of dignity toward players and fellow coaches, because up close and personal, there at courtside, where the sweat glistens and flies in beads from the slightest contact, is to know how precious the game really is.

jaybate 11 years ago

Further, though it took me awhile to realize it this season, it is also terribly wrong to kick the media to the end zone, and soon to evict them entirely, but for a few hair-less brained talking heads like Dick "Vigorish" Vitale.

The media is either friend, or foe, to the game. Either it leads to more informed fans enriched by more informed media, or more disinformed fans impoverished by reporters having insight into basketball about equivalent to insight into Super Mario.

An uninformed, inexperienced media is as dangerous for the game as is an uninformed, inexperienced alumni.

Banishing the pixel burned wretches to the cheap seats, and eventually out entirely for anyone by the hair-less brains, means in time that there will be no more Gary Bedore's that really understand what we the fans understand about the game. They won't have seen it up close and personal for years on end. They will have seen it entirely from the cheap seats, where one can only feel a fraction of the games full grandeur and intensity.

Journalists, like students, have to be groomed to be intelligent stewards of the game. They can't get a true feel for the game from the monitor, or the cheap seats. No one can.

Once you've set for years courtside, then you are so much more knowledgeable, whether you share it or not.

We must find ways to get the students and the media back to courtside, or we are sewing the seeds of the game's inevitable decent into being essentially a digital event viewed by (and wasted on) persons raised on the game through TVs and PCs and iPhones.

jaybate 11 years ago

Who will even know how much violence is enough, or too much, if they have never seen bones break on hard wood? Who will even vaguely grasp the importance of a floor game, of glue men, if there are no fans, or journalists, that have been upclose and personal with the game for several years? And who will truly understand the super human performances of some of the games greatest players, even some of its lesser players, when they have not felt up close the reality of athletic brilliance unfiltered by a lens and reduced to 1s and 0s and redistributed in packets and reassembled with bytes missing and no sweat? Who will understand just how bad of an actor Bob Knight truly was, of how bad of an actor Mike Krzyzewski truly is, if they have not sat up close and personal for several years, and seen how the bad actors do what they do and mask it?

Who will be able to judge intelligently in the chorus of the alumni and media, who is a good coach for KU and who is not, if they have never gotten to sit up close and personal for several years and seen how good and bad coaching is really done during a game?

From the moment we banished the students and the media to the cheap seats, the KU legacy began a burn down on its supply of truly knowledgeable, truly experienced, alumni and media? From that moment, we began a decent into a legacy of experts and naives. Every facet of society that has allowed itself to be transformed from a diverse, knowledgeable community of experts and amateurs tempered and seasoned with the stabilizing wisdom of a large, democratic body of knowlegable and experienced persons and media has ended in ignominy.

jaybate 11 years ago

Our political system is now largely a thing to be ashamed of, because experts came to lead naives around by the nose with PR and psy-ops techniques, that were enabled because the oligarchy-media complex has been able to marginalize the broadest and most up close and personal participation in government by republic. We now have many generations of Americans who have never worked in a campaign, who have never run for office, who have merely submitted to being governed by what the oligarchy serves them on TV. The oligarchy picks the candidates. The oligarchy picks the issues that will and will not be discussed and then sets the boundaries of discourse. The oligarchy contrives the election. The oligarchy owns the media. The oligarch owns the politicians. The oligarchy incentivizes the media so that it willingly reports the contrived election without even mentioning that it is contrived. The oligarchy incentivizes the politicians so that they do not even mention that they are owned by the oligarchy. And over time, we begin not even to know that we are not participating in a meaningful sense of self-government, because most of us have never experienced self-government in action up close and personal.

For there to be any wisdom, first hand experience and knowledge, even in the age of information, remain a must in all human activities.

Yes, we need the energy and excitement of the students now to continue to give our teams an edge at home and to keep revitalizing the joy of the living myth of KU basketball.

But we also need their knowledge and first hand experience of the game, and the wisdom it brings, down the road to replenish the legacy as the old die off.

It is not that the old were always right with this wisdom. They were often wrong.

It is that possessing this wisdom based on first hand experience and primary knowledge is the only chance the legacy has to escape the tyranny of the experts and the naive that will ensue inevitably without it.

And the experts and the naives, unfettered by the stabilizing and sobering wisdom of an experienced and knowledgeable based of amateurs/citizens, will eventually destroy any admirable human legacy built up over time.

It is as certain as taxes as inevitable as death.

Rock Chalk!

jaybate 11 years ago

KSA_21_3503,

You are certainly entitled to your opinion, but for your information, these are the glory days. KU is at an absolute zenith. There is a case to be made for a new arena. There is a case to be made for staying with AFH. But neither case hinges on hanging onto the glory days of the 1950s. KU is IMHO more dominant now than in 1950s.

Rock Chalk!

hardwick15 11 years ago

The pasture is waiting. Mr. Meyer, it is time.

rges 11 years ago

this has nothing to do with Collins having too much on his plate, or the distractions of Aldrich and X are u stay or are you going to go.

The problem this years team had and the reason that they lost to UNI is they did not have the killer instinct that the 08 team had. This years team thought they could show up to that UNI game and win. The 08 team wanted to come in and blow you out for 35 minutes and let their scout team play the last 5 while they take a break and get ready for the next game. I thought this years team had that after the Temple game in Philly!

With all of that said i am still proud of this years team. They sent Sherron out with yet another Big 12 regular season title, Big 12 Tourny Title, winningest player in KU history, and the team that got KU its 2,000 win.

I am realy excited about next years team as well. I really want to see the progress that Releford and Little have made. I love the depth that we have at guard right now. If we get 1 or 2 more big time players so be it although i do not think that we need another guard. I would much rather get a big time inside presence to go along with Marcus, Markeiff, T-Tob, Withey.

Jim Pendleton 11 years ago

The lack of railings brings up an interesting point, which is the points system itself. As we all know, points are everything when it comes to seating.

An older couple, whom I have known for many years and are great and loyal KU fans, now have to put up with having seats in higher up locales at both AFH and the Stadium. I am sure it is hard enough to climb those steps before the game. They sit close to me, and I have had to watch them leave games early (even those still in doubt), because it takes him a lot of time to get down the steps and then out to their vehicle, in whichever lot that might be in. I am sure they do this to avoid the throngs of people leaving once the game is over, and to keep people from getting stuck behind them as it takes time for them to get down the aisle.

Yes, rails might be of some help. However, I would think some adjustment to our points system might be of benefit to our older fans, particularly those who have come to games for many years and still want to come. I am not saying to put them on the floor, but something should be done to help these people who have been loyal supporters of our teams for many years, and now obviously need some assistance with how and where they are seated. Put them in seats closer to the bottom of the aisles so it is easier to get in and out, maybe on a corner for example.

I am a middle of the road donor, and unless I win the lottery, my chances of ever seeing floor seats or even chair seats are pretty slim. I would hope that when I am that age and still want to attend games, that maybe a plan can be put in place to allow our older fans some decent seats without having to sit clear at the top of the arena, and avoid having to take forever to get up and down the aisles.

Hoping to be able to come to games for as long as possible! Rock Chalk!!

Jack Wilson 11 years ago

You know, AFH just needs to be shut down. Not enough restrooms with those things that go on the toilet before you sit down; the floor is too slick in many spots, particularly the tunnel; not enough turnstiles to get in; it is sooo loud in there, bad on the ears; it is difficult to see in day games with those windows; from the outside, that limestone is unsightly; I could hear rain on the roof; no video monitors when I get popcorn; the corners of the arena are too dark; the bench seating is uncomfortable; and I saw a bird in the rafters. The hand-railings are just a part of a much bigger problem.

And, geez, you'd think this place was a shrine or something.

BCRavenJHawkfan 11 years ago

I don't care what I have to sit on (because really everyone should be on their feet), I want it to be loud, no one should be getting popcorn during the game - you should be cheering, I like limestone structures (look around it's part of Northeast Kansas), and who's to say the bird in the rafters was not a Jayhawk.

What I really care about is that for the guys on the court it is conducive to wins for the home team but not for the visitors. In fact if I had my way the horn/buzzer would be the old unique squelch.

nobody1793 11 years ago

Instead of adding padding to the scorers table, we should put up hockey boards all the way around the court. I mean if the NCAA tournament is turning into a "physical" game, let's take them up one notch and get a "goon line" out there.

Like my Grandmother always said, "You can't pick-and-roll when you're in an ambulance!"

rockchalkchampionship 11 years ago

That may have been the worst article on this site I've ever (attempted to) read.

jaybate 11 years ago

dynamitehawk,

You are among those using this new medium wisely and to its fullest. I value your compliment.

Rock Chalk!

Tony Bandle 11 years ago

nobody1793

I like your grandmother already...I'll bet if you didn't like her cookies, she'd let you have it with a frying pan!! :}

All things must end someday....even Fenway and Wrigley will eventually be replaced and, someday, a new Allen Fieldhouse will be built. You can count on it.

But preserving this grand old lady as a Kansas Sports Hall of Fame needs to be put into the works now so that down the line when that sad day finally comes, there is a plan for her to stick around.

Jeff Coffman 11 years ago

I went to the Oklahoma city Ford Center in the first/second rounds. They have rails. I watched someone fall and hit their head on the rail. We had to keep her from being moved until the EMTs came and helped her.

I say remove all of the handrails, because it just gives something else for someone to hit their head on, so maybe inadvertently KU is ahead of the game.

Kevin Studer 11 years ago

Jaybate -

Oligarchy-media complex? Disinformed fans impoverished by reporters? Trying to prove yourself an expert with intentionally unclear semantics doesn't work if you do not know how to properly structure a sentence or use a comma:

"For there to be any wisdom, first hand experience and knowledge, even in the age of information, remain a must in all human activities."

"Once you've set for years courtside,"

Ouch.

hailtoku 11 years ago

DON'T MESS WITH ALLEN FIELDHOUSE.

Cleaning up the concourses is one thing... but don't reconstruct the inside of an arena widely known as one of the greatest basketball arenas in the world.

Mike Skiles 11 years ago

OMG, yes lets tear down AFH! Its old, poorly designed for the young fans, and we need to have more spots for trendy restuarant offerings!

While we are at it, lets also tear down the White House, our president deserves to live in a nice new bungalow versus some old piece of crap 200+ year old building.

People suggesting that KU is at the apex of success, and now is the time to turn Allen Field House into rubble for a nice new dig, go find your hole and crawl back into it.

AFH is truly one of the unique and best places to see a BBall game in the USA. Wow, this message board is beginning to lose touch with how good we have it, when people are wanting to tear down AFH....Ouch!

jaybate 11 years ago

Dear joancusack118 (ouch),

Are you trying to be a fop? Ouch.

Oligarchy-media complex. Ouch. What kind of fop can't look those two words up and grasp the hypenation? Ouch.

"Disinformed fans impoverished by reporters?" Ouch. What kind of fop forgets to use quotes, and place elipses before and after the fragment quoted, so as not to mislead a reader, and then capitalizes "disinformed" in the quote, when it shouldn't be? Ouch.

"Trying to prove yourself an expert..." Ouch. What kind of fop thinks I'm trying to prove myself an expert? Ouch.

"Ouch." What kind of fop uses "ouch" after he/she has been such a fop? Ouch. Double ouch. Triple ouch with cow pies on top. Quadruple ouch with a fop on top. Quintuple ouch with joancusack118 on top.

:-)

jaybate 11 years ago

Along with hand rails, I would like to see oxygen bottles, absorbent underwear, pace maker batteries and suppositories under each seat, also.

(rimshot!)

Seriously, though, what's so bad about making the old girl a little more user friendly to old Jayhawks.

This kind of female dogging and complaining precedes every improvement that benefits some aspect of society.

No one turns to toast and threatens to go Osama when the power's-that-be shake the alums down for millions to put up a new game boy on steroids over center court every so often.

What's the big flippin' deal about some hand rails?

Rock Chalk!

dynamitehawk 11 years ago

Fine. Handrails work, but we need to compromise. If we have to get handrails, then I want a full scholarship midget drill team with miniature flags and a hot rod mini fire truck to bring them out.

jaybate 11 years ago

dynamitehawk,

Gotcha.

Let's use a stretch Mini Cooper for the fire truck!

yates33333 11 years ago

JHawk74 I hope you are correct.

jaybate. You need an index for your postings. You move too rapidly for my old brain.

Martin Shupert 11 years ago

I have to say this. Taylor is not cut out to be a point guard. He has no concept of running an offense. He has no understanding of when to pass it, where to pass it, when to drive, when to pull up. How many times did Bill Self ask him, "Where are you going?" this year? Pell mail into the coffin corner, one on four, was his usual fast break move. We can't win with him there. It just won't work. He's a fine off guard, in spite of the fact that he isn't as good of a shooter as he should be by now. I sure hope he shoots between 500 and 1000 shots a day between now and the season, because he isn't going to be the answer to our point guard problem. His assists to turnover ratio has been horrible, but the real problem is, the rest of the team will not be able to trust him with the ball or know what he's going to do, and they will not respond to his sporadic play. On top of all that, once a head case, always a head case. I hope he can improve between now and next year. If he does, I will gladly take it all back.

Jack Wilson 11 years ago

martyks: Agreed, except the part about him being a "fine off guard." I think the rest of your on point post disputes that suggestion.

tical523 11 years ago

. . . . . ugh, the last four paragraphs had great points though.

Steve Brown 11 years ago

Bring back the cinder track and the two old guys, with the halftime red blue floor wooden handled dust mops race.

Long before digital dot scoreboard racing we had blue v. red old guys (45 I'm guessing- 35 years ago) real racing while they dusted the court at halftime. They would start side by side in the middle under bucket at visitors end, then walk together 8 minutes later, (okay 4-6 but seemed forever) they would be on each side coming down the home stretch. Each guy walked just shy of briskly and the red guy usually carried a 2.5 foot lead into the final lap where blue guy often got him by a nose.

They both had smoke breaks right before and after the race. The students knew it was a race but the old guys didn't seem to hear us or know when we yelled Go Blue.

Often after half time we would assure coach the game was in the bag as blue guy won mop race, as he was 3-4 feet in front of us guys on Row 1. Behind the team. On occasion we were obligated to warn him, red guy won, we have to fight for rebounds and great shots, the winds were against us. Ownes seemed to smile when we told him, yet he never verbally replied, just smiled and nodded. We went 8-8 at home in AFH that year, and some think the last game of the season we upset a highly ranked MU Tiger squad because Bud Stallworth hit 50 points, and others think it was the magic of the '52 National Champs & Olympic Gold Kansas team present for the 20 year reunion, and a few of us realize that those things helped but we are grateful blue mop guy dug a little deep that night, kept a quick pace and waxed red mop guy to appease the AFH spirits that control the bounce of the ball.

Go Blue!

Jacobpaul81 11 years ago

Well, I've been saying all year long that our best lineup was: Taylor, Reed, Henry. Morris and Morris. The 5 could play very aggressive and fast paced on both ends of the court. With Cole or Collins, the game slowed way down due to how they controlled game pace. When they were on the court, they were the scorers. When these 5 were on the court, they all were scorers. I think guys like Vitale and Katz are way underestimating the returning talent at KU and they will be eating their own words come December 2010 when the Jayhawks are ranked in the top 5 again. The loss of Henry will hurt, but we add back in Little and Releford, both who play the 2-3 position well. Withey and Robinson will have made that Freshman to Sophmore transition (it's hard to do when there's already 3 guys ahead of you who get the majority of the playing time... now they are competing to be the 3rd guy. Just like the Morris twins this season and Cole did in late 2008, Robinson and Withey will improve dramatically.)

They are calling next season a down-year for the Big XII but I think the press just wants to make the East look that way. They play that game every season and every season the Big XII advances more teams to the Sweet 16 than any other conference. Baylor, K-state, A&M, Texas, Kansas, Missouri and Oklahoma State should all be good and Colorado was coming on last year and giving everyone fits in Boulder. It sounds like they are going to promote the assistant to head coach with Bzdelik leaving, so expect continued improvement out west. I'd say 6 teams into the tourney with a possibility of up to 8.

Spencer Goff 11 years ago

Martyks, I'm glad you brought this up because I couldn't agree with you more.

To other readers... Taylor is absolutely not cut out to be a point guard, and through two years has shown no signs of developing. People like his speed. Fine. Do you like his mentality? Do you like his consistent shooting and perfect shot selection? Do you like his A+ passing that finds a cutter right on time to hit a layup? And, from the point position in particular, do you like his leadership and take control mentality? And do we think he has the maturity to work on any of those things to improve them to the point they need to be by a junior campaign?

Go ahead, answer "Yes I do!" to any of those questions, delude yourself into thinking the last two years didn't happen.

I'll say it again; Super T. has shown to be good at two things and two things only, Fight Night at the Burge, and the Twitter Hour of Power. If he comes out next year and is a different animal, I'll stand up and say, "I'm wrong." So book it and wait on it, but if he remains to be fail sauce, other posters need to stop preaching about this guy as a stud starting point guard.

The Morris twins are going to destroy people, as long as somebody can get them the ball at the right spot. I'm waiting to see who that is.

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