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Friday, March 19, 2010

Jitter bugged: ‘Tight early,’ Jayhawks advance over Lehigh

Kansas forward Marcus Morris delivers a dunk on Lehigh defenders Gabe Knutson, left, and Zahir Carrington during the second half Thursday, March 18, 2010 at the Ford Center in Oklahoma City.

Kansas forward Marcus Morris delivers a dunk on Lehigh defenders Gabe Knutson, left, and Zahir Carrington during the second half Thursday, March 18, 2010 at the Ford Center in Oklahoma City.

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2010 KU-Lehigh

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KU tops Lehigh after slow start

Kansas forward Marcus Morris had a career-high 24 points in the Jayhawks' victory over Lehigh.

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— It’s a well-known fact that no top seed ever has lost to a No. 16 seed in the first-round of the NCAA Tournament.

How many No. 1 seeds have trailed, 12-4, in a tourney lid-lifter is anybody’s guess.

“We were down 12-4 to Lehigh. No offense, but if that’s West Virginia or some No. 1 or 2 seed, it could get ugly for us,” KU sophomore guard Tyshawn Taylor said after the No. 1-seeded Jayhawks survived a slow start — OK, a dreadful 20 minutes (KU led by six at the break) — to overcome No 16-seed Lehigh, 90-74, on Thursday night at Ford Center.

The Jayhawks did play well enough to improve the all-time record of No. 1 seeds to 102-0 — and did play well enough to advance into Saturday’s second-round game against Northern Iowa (4:40 p.m., Ford Center).

But as KU coach Bill Self pointed out, “We definitely didn’t ever put them away. We had numerous opportunities to make it difficult for them to get back in the game, but we never got that three, four stops in a row to really stretch it.”

The problem, according to Self and his players, was first-game NCAA jitters.

Yes, top seeds apparently get a case of the jitters, too.

“I thought we played really tight early,” said Self, who was forced to call a 30-second timeout with his team down eight early. “I don’t know why … except first-round NCAA Tournament. There is some pressure early. The lid didn’t come off until the second half.”

The Jayhawk players, who struggled to a 35-29 halftime lead, agreed they were tight.

“We had the first-game jitters, similar to last year against North Dakota State,” said KU sophomore forward Marcus Morris, who shrugged off an early benching to respond with a career-high 26 points off 12-of-15 shooting with 10 rebounds.

KU needed such an outing to match Lehigh freshman C.J. McCollum, who hit for an identical 26.

“Coach said it best: That three-pointer I made finally took the lid off the basket,” Morris said.

He had a three kick high off the rim, then fall through the hoop, opening a 21-2 run that erased that 12-4 hole and gave the Jayhawks a 25-14 lead at 6:21.

“They were up 12-4, and we got tight a little bit. Marcus’ shot bounced on the rim and went in, and we said, ‘Time to go,’’’ Taylor said.

Yet KU still led just 50-44 with 13:10 left. Tyrel Reed hit three threes and Brady Morningstar one in a 25-11 surge that gave KU a 75-55 cushion at 6:34.

Reed hit four of six threes the second half after going scoreless the first half.

“Tyrel was probably the most efficient player we had in the game offensively because his shots came at big times, which really kind of kept the game, the distance great enough where we never really felt threatened,” Self said.

The Jayhawks, who were led by Morris’ strong production inside (Cole Aldrich contributed 11 points off 5-of-10 shooting), did outscore Lehigh 52-18 in the paint. That’s on a night Zahir Carrington played bigger than 6-foot-7, scoring 17 points off 7-for-15 shooting with six boards.

“He was getting whatever he wanted down low,” said Aldrich.

“I can’t feel too great tonight, because my man scored 17 points,” Morris noted. “We really didn’t play well defensively tonight. We gave up 45 points the second half (to KU’s 55). That’s a lot.”

The Jayhawks’ team leader, Sherron Collins, who had 18 points and six assists, said the Jayhawks left the arena with a positive taste in their mouths.

“A win is a win, especially this time of year,” Collins said. “I just think the shots weren’t falling early. It was a typical first-round game. We’ll get some rest, practice tomorrow and come back strong against Northern Iowa. We know they’ve got a good team, and we’ll have to play well to win.”

Comments

Dyrk Dugan 10 years, 3 months ago

no argument here with Sherron's last comments. UNI is pretty good. but it's good that KU has to play well....there's no more "gimmes."

I personally think we're a very tough matchup for them. they want to plod along...and we want to go pretty fast....problem is, we have just as many physical players as they do.

we'll see how it goes....whew, the first day this year was real madness for sure! Go Jayhawks!

Ben Kane 10 years, 3 months ago

yes we were tight early. sort of expected that though. when your goal is this tournament (sherron and cole) before the season ever starts then it's reasonable to expect them to feel a little added pressure.

I'd like to see us take care of the ball a little better but other than that, time to move on and get ready ready for the next game.

RCJH down with UNI!!!!

bradynsdad 10 years, 3 months ago

this has been our story for quite a few games now. we come out awful but close strong. if we could start putting together a solid first ten minutes to match our last thirty we would look great. thanks to the hoyas and marquette for really screwing up my bracket, but what else do you expect from the small east.

ParisHawk 10 years, 3 months ago

Dwelling on the good:

We have true, effective depth of 8 players. If Tyrel Reed is still our 8th man, what team in the tournament has an 8th man who contributes as much as Tyrel? I remember Roy Williams saying "when the bench players are in, they don't have to help us, they just have to not hurt us." This year's team has 8 guys who really help.

From now on, I refuse to talk about "our two best players": that is not fair to Marcus.
I'm not saying he's as good as Sherrole, but he is closer in value to them than to X or Tyshawn. I think it is now fair to talk about "our THREE best players".

ellsworthhawk 10 years, 3 months ago

What a luxury to have so many scoring threats. Mc for 26.... great game big fella. Any one of our 8 or 9 can explode on any given night.

I agree with Paris on Mc. He stepped it up last night. Period.

downriverdan 10 years, 3 months ago

bradynsdad From yesterdays showing the big east does look a bit overrated three of them go down to higher numered seeds and nova barely survived. Three of four Big 12 teams advanced and one, Texas, fails.

FreddyinLA 10 years, 3 months ago

Can't figure out why:
HCBS is blowing a gasket 4 possessions into the game against a 16. Didn't double down on their "big" guy until 8 minutes left in the game. Two times we doubled down he lost the ball and dribbled clear out to the 3 line to get away. Hard to defend the post when he has unlimited time to back someone in. Why we don't slide X to the 4 spot instead of playing Robinson. Start the game by insisting on feeding the post and ignoring the outside game. Balance wins games. NCAA tourney games come down to coaching and two key possessions at the end of the game. With Sherron I'm not concerned about the 2 key possissions at the end.

justinryman 10 years, 3 months ago

KU started the Big12 tournament this same way, got stronger as it moved along. We are ok. Let the first round be the game where a team works out all those jitters and kinks. They are young kids and younger men who are very coachable, so coach, coach em up!!!

I do believe that UNI is a better match up for KU than UNLV(UNLV causes a lot of turnovers, something we seem to have a lot of any way), but UNI isn't that deep on the bench, so running them off the court might be in our favor.

Unfortunately living up here in Nebraska and without a dish, local tv market decided that when KU went up 14 it was time to watch the Tenn. game. So I tried to get it online, which wasn't much better, slow feed. I guess it's time to either get a dish or move to Kansas where I truely belong but have never resided.

Rock Chalk Jayhawk

Can't wait til Saturday at 4:15

Tim Bingaman 10 years, 3 months ago

Loved seeing TRob in there in a game like this. He is going to be HUGE next year and help us in 3/11 if we get him some minutes this year!

Keep up the good work Jayhawks!!!!

FairgroveJayhawk 10 years, 3 months ago

Texas, man. Lost their wheels and dropped the motor. They gave that game away last night. It would have looked good for the Big 12 if they would have done better. What a disappointing season. KU has a really really good thing going right now with Self and his staff.

bbeckum 10 years, 3 months ago

This is exactly what I would expect from a team picked to win by a socialist president. Jeeze: distribute the points. Pass the basketball. Play team defense (in the second half). Next thing you know, they'll be playing a zone--the ultimate expression of collectivism.

Kye Clark 10 years, 3 months ago

justinryman - you must not watch too many UNI games. Living in Wichita I was in a position to see a few Northern Iowa games (as they play in the Missouri Valley with Wichita State). They have 9 guys averaging double digit minutes, and yesterday was no exception. 9 guys got at least 16 minutes of playing time. Once yesterday and a couple of times during the Missouri Valley Championship game against Wichita State they subbed 5 guys at a time.

That being said, I think we win the game without too much worry. This Jayhawk team excels in grind it out games, similar to the pace UNI likes to play. I suspect the pace of the game will be slow, as it is harder to speed a team up than it is to slow one down. So while we will methodically build our lead in the half-court game, the rare occasions we are able to get out on the break should allow us to pull away. UNI is a slow, plodding team and when we are able to run they won't be able to stop us.

Kye Clark 10 years, 3 months ago

bbeckum - keep your politics to yourself. this is a basketball board. he picked carolina last year...was that exactly what you expected from them last year? get real bub

bbeckum 10 years, 3 months ago

That was sarcasm. Sorry, I've gotten so sick of the politics on this board that I had to vent.

justinryman 10 years, 3 months ago

316, living in Omaha I get force fed the MVC with Creighton and how great that Cong is, and I hate it!!!! So I try not to pay much attention to them or anyone involved with them that much if I can. I do know what you are saying about thier whole sale subs though, as they did do it to Creighton this year,(my neighbor is a huge fan and was blown away by it, like it was something new when a team could do that). But with that being said, are their second 5 worth trotting out on the floor against a Kansas? Do you want to risk that? They might be well oiled and gell well, but I'm guessing Collins will run circles around them.

I have watched UNLV play 2 times before yesterday, and they averaged something like 14 turnovers in a game with their press and full court man to man, something KU really didn't need to run into with it's lack of ball handling of late.

Here's to all the fans cheering for KU this weekend and the following two as well.

Rock Chalk Jayhawk!!!!!!!!!!!

Kye Clark 10 years, 3 months ago

It did make me happy watching the Big Least struggle so mightily yesterday. I was pulling hard for Robert Morris to knock off Nova. Maybe the most overrated team in the tournament. Couldn't believe it when Redding passed up a lay-up to dribble out a few more seconds of clock. Undisciplined, poor basketball IQ, and inconsistent. Not sure what the reasons were for the benching of Reynolds & Fisher, but whatever the reasons it points to lack of character & leadership. Even Jay Wright's comments "we live by the sword & die by the sword", refering to his team's reliance on the jump shot, illustrates a philosophy that will never win Nova a championship. Had they been playing a deeper team (the Colonials were really hurt by 3 players fouling out) they would be watching the rest of the tournament at home. Georgetown was inconsistent all year, capable of playing great, but not capable of fighting through their struggles. Marquette & Notre Dame were middling teams that I had bowing out in the first round anyway.

The lone blemish for the Big 12 on the first day of the tournament is not surprising, and probably should have been expected. I had picked Texas to win in hopes that they might recapture some of the early season play that once upon a time had them ranked #1 (how long ago does that seem?) and possibly give Kensucky a scare. However, they flamed out as they have for the last 2 months and it gave me great satisfaction knowing that thug Damion James' collegiate career ended with his team never winning the Big 12 tournament, sharing the regular season title only once and never claiming it outright, and only once advancing so far as the sweet 16. Good riddance chump.

Kye Clark 10 years, 3 months ago

justinryman - yeah I'm not saying that UNLV wouldn't have been a tougher matchup. I'm also not saying that their subs are worthy of being on the floor with Kansas. My buddy is a huge Wichita State fan. Had season tickets. Went to Arch Madness. He too was overwhelmed by the mass subbing, blaming UNI's depth on the Shocker's loss in the Valley Championship game. I agree it's not a novel idea, and you're right once you get to that 9th & 10th guy the talent level is bound to drop off. However, are their starting 5 worthy of being on the floor with Kansas? Talent-wise its not even close. I'm not an expert on UNI or anything, but my guess is Ben Jacobsen knows his team and thinks the sum of the parts is greater than that of the individuals talent. Maybe he has to do that because otherwise his starters don't perform as well without significant rest. I don't know. I'm with you that KU should pull away. I guess it depends on how you define "depth".

Regarding Collins, I was expecting him to right the ship early on in last night's game. To drive to the basket or free himself for an open jumper, to tell the rest of the team "let's go", but it didn't happen. Maybe he was letting the team find it's own way. He still had a very good game, but against tougher competition he might need to grab the reigns to get this team going should we struggle early on again.

Linda Daxon 10 years, 3 months ago

Fairview Jayhawk,

Texas let me down. I was counting on them taking out Kensucky. Wanted a Big 12 team to do it. At least the only Big 12 loss yesterday was in overtime. My brackets are a mess thanks to the record number of first day upsets.

slowplay 10 years, 3 months ago

Let's not discredit Lehigh. They were athletic, ran well, played fairly tough D and have a very impressive scorer in McCollum. They could easily have been a 10 or 12 seed. The key was KU's bench, outscoring Lehigh 18-4. By the middle of the second half, Lehighs starters were gassed. Someone mentioned why was KU was trying so hard to get the ball inside? I'm sure that getting the ball to Aldrich early was the game plan. The problem was, most passes were forced rather than getting to the post in the flow of the offense. NI is going to be a similar matchup. They have a good inside presence with Eglseder, and Farokhmanesh can hit the 3's. Marcus should have another monster game as NI really has no one who can stay with him. NI's bench will see alot of minutes, but they are in for mostly defense, although Sonnen can shoot from outside. If KU struggles early, it could be a fight. But NI can not stay with them the entire game.

jaybate 10 years, 3 months ago

“A win is a win, especially this time of year,” Collins said. “I just think the shots weren’t falling early. It was a typical first-round game. We’ll get some rest, practice tomorrow and come back strong against Northern Iowa. We know they’ve got a good team, and we’ll have to play well to win.”--Chief Warrant Officer Sherron Collins

Oh, thank you Gunny for bringing the platoon and the brass and the division behind it back to reality.

God, we're going to miss this guy, when he goes.

Remember, Sarge, even if we take a hit, I've still got your back.

I believe we are going up Hill 2010, Gunny, one way or another, and I believe you are going to keep the guys in line and climbing, when the bullets start flying.

Rock Chalk!

Ron Franklin 10 years, 3 months ago

Maybe the reason the committee did such a poor job seeding this tournament (across the board, and not just the midwest) is to create parity that otherwise would not be there. It's human nature for us to support the "little guy". But how many fans truly know who the little guy is. I know about most of the major programs, but not much about these mid-major level teams. By assigning them a high seed (or low) 10-16, we automatically assume they are the underdog. And we like that. We enjoy seeing that, and the media LOVES the David vs Goliath headlines. It's good for business.

Just a theory, not that I necessarily believe it to be true.

PS-fire Rick Barnes. He cannot coach, or his players will not play for him for some reason. All they had to do was hit a free throw. They looked terrified at the line, and just unprepared for battle overall.

chaggs 10 years, 3 months ago

Something crossed my mind last night while watching the game. Every team (with few exceptions) expressed an chip-on-the-shoulder / dis-respected approach to give them an edge prior to the opening round.

Now, if KU had tried to employ that, people would have laughed at us.

I am wondering if maybe - just maybe - this team needs to subconsciously manufacture a feeling of being dis-respected. Sherron has done it in the past with words said by other teams and their players. Maybe more subtly they do it by getting down early. Think about it...after the first 10 minutes...our turnovers dropped dramatically.

Not saying it's good or bad...just saying.

Your thoughts?

RCJH!!!

leenyong 10 years, 3 months ago

Big 12's record so far : 3-1

Today's Big 12 teams in action : A&M, Mizzou, OSU

dbenton6 10 years, 3 months ago

Just another day in our world with the Hawks. I was never nervous when we were down early. We have a poor game and they have a fantastic game and we still won by a good margin. This happens every time our guys play someone they are supposed to easily beat....no matter what time of the year it is. They have always played to the level of the compitition. No worries. Northern Iown is not a bad team, but they still play in the Mo Valley against Mo Valley compitition. Wichita state beat them this year and Wichita State bowed out in the first round of the NIT. KU gets everyones "best shot" and that will never change. They all have nothing to loose at all....KU knows this and that is just the way it has always been and always will be. I watched NI yesterday and they are big but very slow inside...Good luck with going against Cole and our twins. Good luck KU and lets show the MVC what playing against the best conference feels like.

justinryman 10 years, 3 months ago

I think Sherron knows when to grab this team and let them know it's time to take it to the next level and when to let things play out. Last night was one of those moments you let them play out. You start getting in guys faces in the first round, what does that give you for the rest of the tourny?

Right place, right time. I do believe that's what makes him such a valuable leader.

justinryman 10 years, 3 months ago

Oh and as for Rick Barnes, I've said it once and I will say it again.

He couldn't coach his way out of a wet paper bag.

FairgroveJayhawk 10 years, 3 months ago

Idaxon - I feel your pain. Texas loosing looked bad for the Big 12 but may help with KU recruiting the big ole state of Tejas.

okiedave 10 years, 3 months ago

I know that the Jayhawk nation is an intelligent group who shuns mentally ignorant superstitiousness. However, I think we need to be prepared because I think the team may need all the help they can get during the tournament.

Jaybate: Call your brother and tell him to keep the #@*% T.V. off. As for you, make sure that your mirror is clean and in the right position.

I have made sure the pillows in all my various chairs are in in the right position in case I need to make changes during the game.

The rest of you know what you need to do.

I hope none of this is necessary, but just in case.

newyorkjayhawk 10 years, 3 months ago

I don't know if you want to call it playing "tight" or if they were just pressing, needlessly... but that timeout when the score climbed to 12-4 marked the end of an aweful stretch. I actually was upset that Morris shot that 3 that "took the lid off the basket". I'm usually all for the Morris twins chucking trey's because as long as they hit one or two a game, it spreads the defense that much more, and it's easier to ultimately pull the opponent apart. But 4 straight posessions ended with Kansas missing a three point shot, which helped create that 8 point deficit. Considering that Morris was then shooting a FIFTH straight 3 for our team was ridiculous. Meanwhile, on another posession, Henry caught the ball on the wing, didn't even bother getting into the tripple threat position, and instead went right into Morris on the block. Morris ended up missing a turnaround baseline jumper on that posession, but I was so much happier with that time down the floor than Morris hitting a 3 pointer, down 8 at the time, 6 minutes into the game, that clanked off the back of the rim before luckily falling in. versus UNI, Kansas needs to remind themselves that Morris CAN score 20+ and that Cole is the best center in the nation... FEED THE BIG MEN! THEY'RE HUNGRY! 3 pointers are good for 3 different scenarios... if we're playign a tight D that needs to be expanded so we can more easily pull it apart, if we're in rhythme and building on a lead, or if we're desparate and need to catch up from a late game deficit... 6 minutes in and 8 points down doesn't qualify either of these situations... the Hawks simply failed to find their big guys down low. Those 5 threes in a row weren't in rhythme, weren't wide open, and made no sense. higher percentage shots earlier in the game would've given KU a 30 point win, instead of a 16 point survival course.

RrrCeeJayAych 10 years, 3 months ago

Mmmm.... fish tacos!

Anthony, what do have against surfing, brah? Give it a shot sometime, you might like it.

Yeah, believe it or not, there are Jayhawk faithful on the west coast and they have opinions and questions just like the rest of us. (And woah, Freddy's comments were actually about the game itself!) If you think the team played great all 40 minutes and Self is beyond question, then great--that's your opinion. The rest of us will be questioning the inability to start quick, play consistently, our strategy, execution, etc. All in the name of supporting our team.

That said, I don't blame Self for "blowing a gasket" when his team plays that poorly. Seems to have worked as we responded right away. Also, down the stretch he responded and our team responded just fine. Although we were tight we didn't panic--we played with confidence and poise--and the defensive stops and big baskets followed. I think that's what our team is all about this year--responding with poise.

Maybe Sherron should get someone to punch him in the nose BEFORE the game starts.

FoCoCoHawk 10 years, 3 months ago

First time posting here tho I've been following these boards since the recruitment of X. Crazy, die hard Jayhwak fan here, who was on the Hill in 1988 going nuts. The best vision I can conjure is HCBS being like a jockey, holding a powerful racehorse back until it's time to go the the whip.

Oh, and the whip wears #4.

FoCoCoHawk 10 years, 3 months ago

As a matter of deeply entrenched animosity, I would root for either Mizzou OR KSU to beat either Duke or Kentucky. (I might have to soak my fingers from merely typing that but it's true.)

Other than that...RCJH!

FoCoCoHawk 10 years, 3 months ago

And having said that I must relate a story from last weekend. I had stopped in the supermarket here in Colorado to allow a woman to pass; as her shirt was adorned with a Jayhawk, naturally I cheerfully said "Rock Chalk Jayhawk" and she responded with a resounding "Go KU!" Since this seemed perfectly normal to me, I focused on the reactions of the people nearby: Jealous smirks. compensatory sneers. I was left with the feeling that they wish they could somehow be part of the Jayhawk Nation but could never truly understand what it means...that they somehow suspected that every March, behind closed doors, people are having unimaginable fun, all centered around a bird in golden shoes.

Which reminds me of a t-shirt we had made after 1988, one that I wore until it was in absolute tatters: "This bird don't flip!"

RCJH!

55jayhawk 10 years, 3 months ago

Did anyone in Texas have trouble getting the game on CBS? All we could get on cable in E TX was the TX BB game. I didn't like the slow start but we should be OK tomorrow and there on.

justinryman 10 years, 3 months ago

55jay, in Nebraska, we didn't get the first few minutes of the KU game and once they had a 14 point lead they took us to the Tenn. game, and then the end of the Texas game. Never did see the end of the KU game, thank goodness for the internet, but CBS's website to watch games on is terrible, perhaps becasue everyone is trying to watch their team play on it or something.

I need a dish. That or to move to Kansas. Anyone hiring down there?

RCJHKU!!!

FoCoCoHawk 10 years, 3 months ago

I heard KSU is looking for Anger Management consultants.

jaybate 10 years, 3 months ago

I would root for Aliens against UCon and Dook. :-)

jaybate 10 years, 3 months ago

I feel no love lost for UCon or Dook because I have had any love for them in the first place.

dynamitehawk 10 years, 3 months ago

I certainly had a, "Junior! When we get home, remind me to slap yo mamma." moment last night. I am glad we finally showed up.

FoCoco - welcome.

jaybate 10 years, 3 months ago

Oh, I take that back. I once had a fondness for Contucky, because they were offspring; i.e., Rupp was from Kansas. But that was before I knew they had a 3-year-long point shaving scandal and drug their feet for ever on integration. So: I had a fondness for them until I was seven. :-)

FoCoCoHawk 10 years, 3 months ago

I was able to think of one good thing about Calipari: He's not Bob Huggins.

justinryman 10 years, 3 months ago

I had respect for Kentucky until Sutton was there. As for Duke, UConn, TX and Mizzu, nope never, just can't find a reason to. Syracuse is in that same boat, along with Cincy and any and all Big Ten/Eleven teams.

jaybate 10 years, 3 months ago

Did anyone read that story about KU in yesterday's best McPaper--USA Processed, er, USA Today?

First, every quote by Self and Colins and Cole was honest and wonderful; this authenticity I believe deeply unnerves the national sports media and makes it yearn for failure for KU's square shooters. Media whores like covering sports whores. Birds of a feather, you know? They feel a certain shame at having to whore for their daily bread, while these polished guys from Kansas (they're too polished to call them hicks any more) get to become 33-2, while shooting straight.

Second, Bill Self is easily among the best dressed coaches in D1 and so, naturally, USA Processed pictures him in some ghastly sport coat, or some fine looking sport coat that a photog found a way to expose horribly.

Third, c'mon, guys, we know spin and image bias when we read and see it. It can't hurt you guys to just play it straight with KU on the years KU is likely to win it all. Its only every other year. In our reloading year between rings, you can schlep and presstitute yourselves all you want for the overhyped UCons, UConns, Dooks, and so on. We are not asking for the same super favored treatment you give to the over hyped conferences within the golden crescent media market. Just shoot straight with us and we'll go quietly back to the cradle of college basketball coaching and the Father of All Programs with our ring and hang a another banner that you don't have to cover.

jaybate 10 years, 3 months ago

Fourth, to the national media, we feel your pain and understand your fear of readership and viewership declines when KU, from outside the golden crescent of media dominate the game every other year. But here's the thing: put KU's sparkling legacy, terrific contemporary image, steadiness, reliability, freedom from scandal, and authenticity to work in your branding strategies, which you guys are so good at doing. Help KU create the first 36 team Super Conference and help brand KU as America's Team. Our uniforms are already red and blue. White trim would be a compromise we would be glad to make to help you market us as America's team. The Dallas Cowboys are so 20th Century, even with the new stadium. KU basketball is utterly contemporary and part of the only real legacy that matters in college basketball. A super conference spanning all the time zones allows you to book KU into the eastern time zone once a week, which makes them a perfect draw against east coast teams and conditions east coasters to watch KU dominate the tourney every other year with no lapse in your ratings. KU gets vastly greater TV revenues in the 36 team super conference and so can afford to keep Bill Self, the best college basketball coach, from jumping to the NBA, which does not deserve him even a little. The guy needs fresh challenges to keep getting better. He needs the goal of maybe taking KU to the finals every year for 12 years to go after Wooden's record. We're game, if you are. And we're pursuing this dominance thing even if you aren't. Which'll it be? A win/win for KU and the media, or just a win for KU?

Rock Chalk!!!

BCRavenJHawkfan 10 years, 3 months ago

Cornell proving they are as real as when they played KU, as they take out Temple.

FairgroveJayhawk 10 years, 3 months ago

FoCoCoHawk - great 12:01 post.

Regarding Puke, check out on You Tube: "This is Why Duke Sucks", by Peter "PMD" Rosenberg.

I'm sure many have seen it but I just got my first smile from it yesterday.

FoCoCoHawk 10 years, 3 months ago

In a myopic world practically devoid of forward thinkers, Jaybate is wearing visionary bifocals.

jchief40 10 years, 3 months ago

jaybate is freaking crazy. "FoCo" that assessment.

FreddyinLA 10 years, 3 months ago

Tony, surfed for a couple years off the Huntington Beach cliffs. Pretty cools stuff, but MUCH harder than riding a horse.
Fish tacos are overrated. Memo to KU grads in Cali. Stop taking the family to Venice Beach when they make their once a decade trip outside of Kansas. Guys like Tony hear this and think everyone out here spends their weekends staring at actors eating lunch or oiling each other up in speedos.

FoCoCoHawk 10 years, 3 months ago

phog help me, i'm rooting for for mizzou

Tony Bandle 10 years, 3 months ago

Has there ever been a greater fall from grace than Texas University, 2009-2010??!!

From the Number One team in America to a one and done eighth seed blowing a big lead at the end of its only playoff game. UNBELIEVABLE!!

Based on caliber of talent[high], facilities [spectacular] and funds [stratospheric] the University of Texas coach Rick Barnes may be, on a comparable level, the worst coach in America today!!

That's why I want UT to give him a lifetime contract, similar to the one I wanted Misery to give to Quinny. :}

MrPilot 10 years, 3 months ago

I could never, ever, ever root for Mizzou. Not even if they were playing against North Carolina. I wouldn't shed a tear if their whole campus burned to the ground. It would be fitting, really.

Steve Brown 10 years, 3 months ago

I'm rooting for Mizzery also, can't believe, He$$ just froze over, so I guess I would not do so against a mid major, but any ACC or BEast team I just have to support the B12.

Here's hoping B12 +Cornell (my adopted man child) wins games as long as Mizzery keeps up streak to never get to Final 4444.

RCJH-KU

go New Mexico State- go Arkansas Pine Bluffs- go whoever is playing Contucky.

FoCoCoHawk 10 years, 3 months ago

I wouldn't be too quick to call someone crazy based on board postings (unless it's Dook or KY boards). Sure Jaybate is a little verbose (I think he fancies himself somewhat of a cunning linguist) but I find most of his basketball views coherent and to the point. Ok, not always EXACTLY to the point. And if someone wants to cite Camus in support of the Jayhawk Nation, well it's still easier than reading The Plague. Jeez, you have to expect a little eccentricity from KU alum. I eagerly await his interview with James Joyce.

FreddyinLA 10 years, 3 months ago

Tony, thanks for keeping me honest. Playing golf tomorrow so will enjoy the weather. Main reason I'm out here.

Haven't got oiled up with my tighty whities on and jumped into the cage at Venice to knocked out a set of curls with the other juicers, but still have some time out here before heading back home.

FoCoCoHawk 10 years, 3 months ago

I view the other Big 12 Schools like annoying siblings or cousins (bastard offspring to be sure in the case of Mizzou and K-Sate)...someone you have to see once or twice a year to slap them back into their places and re-establish the familial pecking order. (And I really like referring to them as "sister schools" :) But the real enemies are the corruption-fested snakes' nest in Lexington and the wannabe Ivy Leaguers like Puke. RCJH!

KURocksChalk 10 years, 3 months ago

I just watched some of the game at NCAA.com. Looked like they needed a beer before the game to take the jitters away. I think we need to start slower, patient, waiting for opportunities to break it open. We looked frenetic. I think a good drill would be to come down the first possession and pass it all around til the shot clock runs out and no shots unless it is a wide open three or under the basket. Start off with tight D, but disciplined O. We looked like we were in a hurry to win.

Steve Gantz 10 years, 3 months ago

I said it last night, We got screwed as the #1 overall seed having to play the toughest seeds. I'd guess we even had to play the toughest #16 seed as well!

Tomorrow my main worry is the 3 point line, as has been documented, we don't guard it that well and NI can shoot it pretty good from what I hear.

KURocksChalk 10 years, 3 months ago

Wissox, since we play down to our competition I think the strength of the bracket will make us the best prepped team in the Final Four. It works for us. We just need to be more patient at the beginning of the game and gradually turn up the heat and no one will stop us. I agree with the observation on the 3. It was our undoing many a game with Roy it seemed. Yet, oddly, I have seen us go into zones which sometimes unnerves the shooters. I think it is because they know if they miss they are NOT getting the rebound so it causes them to go tight. Psychology of Basketball major.

Dan Harris 10 years, 3 months ago

55jayhawk- I don't know about East Texas but in Dallas they will be showing the DAMN Baylor game tomorrow so I'll be stuck watching the herky jerky CBS computer feed!

Jayhawk_fan_25 10 years, 3 months ago

KU has got to play WAY better defense. You just can't leave guys wide open or not contest shots against guys like Curry, Wall, or even that McCullum guy. But, I think HCBS will have them ready and fired up tommorrow. Go Hawks!

KURocksChalk 10 years, 3 months ago

jhawkdan, have you tried the ncaa.com feed? I think it is better.

Helen Gross 10 years, 3 months ago

okie dave I hear that! I have worn the same shirt for every game for 3 yrs. And have to sit in a certain chair. It does make a difference

RJJH<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<

jayhawkintexas 10 years, 3 months ago

I actually think Rick Barnes is a good coach, even though Texas tanked this year. He runs a clean program and he is a really good recruiter. The problem this year--like other years--is that Texas loses confidence. I think K-State shook their confidence by beating them and the loss to UConn destroyed their confidence. The games they won after the UConn game was on talent alone. When they got to the Big Dance, they didn't have the confidence they needed--they tried not to lose instead of playing to win---and lost. Still, it's fun walking around the UT campus in my Kansas sweatshirt!!! I get a lot of looks but nobody says anything. Also, at the KU-UT game, the Texas crowd was very respectful towards KU and those of us wearing KU gear--they cheered like mad for Texas but they were still very respectful of KU; unlike some people who live in Manhattan, Kansas. Same way walking around the campus at Texas A&M--lotta looks but no comments!!

Dan Harris 10 years, 3 months ago

Speaking of superstitions, I broke out the same sweatshirt/t-shirt combo that I wore in 08 at the start of the season, didn't wash it until after the Tenn loss then OSU loss. Didn't think we needed last night(plus it was 75 in Dallas) so I didn't wear it for the game last night. Needless to say I put it back on at halftime and will wear it for the remainder of the Tourney. I know I know I need a life!

Dan Harris 10 years, 3 months ago

KUROCKS- No but thanks for the tip I'll give it try!

Tony Bandle 10 years, 3 months ago

Kansas has one of the most unique players in America.

His name is Marcuskieff Morris, #21/22. He has a double personality although he always looks the same on the outside.[Sometimes when the light is just right, he looks about an inch taller....or smaller depending on your view.]

Marcuskieff is a difficult man to guard because he excells at different things on the court depending on the circumstances, however, his game production is almost always significant.

For example, in the Lehigh game his line was as follows:

28 points/13 rebounds/3 assists/4 blocks.

This was one of the best performances of the day but got nary a mention because outside of KU Nation, no one truly appreciates this unique fellow. He can be a match-up nightmare because he has the endurance of two players and because of his special qualities, is allowed an NCAA high 10 fouls [and many times he uses most of them!]

With Senior Sherron Collins returning along with the Condor, Cole Aldrich plus the addition of our five star OAD Xavier Henry, Marcuskieff was kind of overlooked but has established himself as maybe the key to a National Championship.

There's an old saying that two heads are better than one. In the case of Marcuskieff that also includes heart, desire and dedication. Twins in body but joined in spirit, Kansas has the best not-so-secret weapon in the tournament.

Jack Wilson 10 years, 3 months ago

Oakville: Regarding your post way up the line about there never being a bigger fall than Texas. I don't know. Wasn't Mizzou rated #3 in 2003 (Arthur Johnson senior season) and then didn't make the tournament?

And just for fun:

I feel a bit dirty, I actually rooted for them today. A Big 12-ACC thing I guess.

dynamitehawk 10 years, 3 months ago

Johnny The Squid put a hit out on Ricky Table Tops shot clock. There is someone trying to fix Louisville's shot clock now. Don't cross the Squid, I guess.

Dan Harris 10 years, 3 months ago

Who would you rather play? MSU or NMState? Any thoughts Jaybate?

Firebirdguy31 10 years, 3 months ago

KU fans rooting for misery... makes me sick to my stomach. I could never do that.

jaybate 10 years, 3 months ago

ralster,

You got me on this point. I would love for someone with some inside skinny to explain Lew Perkins relationship with Jim Calhoun. They don't seem like they are cut from the same granite outcropping. Are they pals? Or did Lew jump to get away from Calhoun. Calhoun has never seemed the most savory of operators to me, but then again, I have never googled his history, or tried to understand him much, so my antipathy to him probably descends from what I have always found to be a chip on his shoulder combined with arrogance, my least favorite combination of personality traits, plus I think he's squandered a lot of talent, plus he robbed Khalid El Amein and Charley what's his name (the guy Self thought he would bring with him from his Illinois recruiting) from us. :-)

I confess to having been uneasy about Lew Perkins in the beginning and for awhile. I was also a little uneasy about Bill Self. I felt KU was kind of rushing into its hires and hiring persons with little feel for the legacy, or in Self's case, to play a brand of ball I doubted fit with the KU legacy. I now believe I was wrong to the extent that Lew and Self did understand the legacy and they have done right by it in many, many ways.

But I do think it is important for KU fans to remember that these two men, good as they have been for KU, are not IMHO KUers to the bone and for their lives, as many persons associated with the program have been over the years. It is always important to remember that Bill Self is man who leaves his options open unapologetically and does not really allow himself to become a Jayhawk on a permanent level. Bill Self always makes it clear that he is the Kansas basketball coach and that it is a job. He is probably strategically smart to do that. The most he concedes is that the place is special and right for he and Cindy right now. That is quite different than saying he is a Jayhawk. Everyone hopes someday that Coach Self will let himself be an unqualified Jayhawk, just as Wilt finally chose to be, and as certain other coaches have chosen to be, when allowed.

jaybate 10 years, 3 months ago

But its a tough, competitive, what have you done for me lately business and he is right to approach it that way. But I really would love one day for Bill Self to come home to Lawrence to retire just the way so many players and coaches have. I know Bill Self is an Okie. I know he is an Okie Stater. I know he cannot trust KU to embrace him for the rest of his life so long as he has to win or else. But some day, I hope Bill Self and KU will one day shake hands permanently and stay together always. I do not expect him to keep coaching KU forever. I expect him to jump to an NBA franchise, even though I think it would not be best for him. I expect him to do it, for the money and the challenge once he believes he has done what he can do for KU as coach. But I could be wrong about that, too.

So: whether he goes one day, or stays, I hope he comes home to Lawrence in the end. It would mean a lot to the legacy to have probably its greatest coach of modern times make that symbolic bond to the end the way Wooden did to UCLA, and the way Naismith and Allen did to KU before Wooden did. KU has lost too many coaches to other places.

We need a coach emeritus for the good of the legacy again. I would like it to be Bill Self, because I have heard stories about how Bill Self gets out and about on Mass Street and thoroughly lives his life in Lawrence gregariously and to the fullest, when he is not recruiting, coaching, or vacationing. He is comfortable in Lawrence, I believe. I want him to have all the adventure and wealth he wants in life. I am not asking him to stay put forever. But I do hope that underneath the hardened head and heart of a D1 coach in a tough business is a man who knows how special he could be for the legacy as a coach emeritus. When Self was a young man, he got to meet and talk with Henry Iba, who was a coach emeritus in Stillwater. Self could do that for some great young KU guy himself and bring his career full circle one day. I hope he does.

Regarding, Hudy, I did not know the Hudy connection to UConn, or I would have been uneasy about that. But she's just stellar. And Perkins has been amazing, too, so there must be something really good going on at UConn that I don't know about. I will try to educate myself to it and be more receptive to the well spring of so much excellence, despite disliking Calhoun on a biochemical level.

Frankly, I am a little uneasy about everything in the beginning. I recall doing a little dry washing on the way down the birth canal about what life was going to be like. And I am especially uneasy about who runs the KU program. But we live in an age of persons at high levels of management almost never living where they are from and Naismith and Allen were immigrants so immigration of greatness is part of the legacy. It is normalized. I have lived away myself. But I can "get better" about this, if Cole can improve as much as he has on rebounding and blocking, even playing 3mpg less.

Rock Chalk!

jaybate 10 years, 3 months ago

jhawkdan42,

Sorry I'm responding so late (game's already played), but I would have preferred to play NMSU any day. Ratso Izzo is one tough Michigander. He's one of the few coaches in D1 that if both went into Thunderdome where two go in and one comes out, I would not swear which one would prevail. Tom Izzo and Bill Self have the same kind of desire to win and prickly unwillingness to be controlled. The difference is that Ratso Izzo will do whatever it takes to win, where as Bill Self will do whatever you make it take to win. Ratso Izzo will stomp on you and humiliate you whether he has to or not. Self will only do it if that is what it takes to win. Ratso really doesn't believe the most skilled team wins. He really does believe the toughest team wins. Ratso is tough for Self to beat, because Ratso has the one philosophy that is really tough for 70-point-take-what-they-give-us and I believe Self knows it.

If you take what Ratso gives you it means you are taking a punch in the mouth. And when you get down in the muck with Ratso's teams, he won't just let you match him punch for punch. He and his team truly are willing to fight to the death. You gotta separate big time on him and then pay the violent price of separating, or he will just slowly drag you from a fist fight, to a knife fight, to a gun fight. There is no bottom to down with Ratso. Self is not sure he is willing to play no bottom to down. Ratso knows this. Self knows this. As a result, Ratso always has a slight advantage in his hip pocket against Self. I don't like Ratso. I don't like playing his teams. I don't like risking a lousy injury to beat his inferior team. I wish NMSU had won. But they didn't and so KU has to risk injury and two things are certain:

1) Our team is going to have to beat MSU in a freefall into a down with no bottom; and

2) Xavier really has no idea what he is getting into and this is one of our vulnerabilities.

FoCoCoHawk 10 years, 3 months ago

I too wanted NMSU to win, as it was my alma mater before KU was (trading Aggies for Jayhawks was the smartest thing I ever did). Besides stating the obvious--that we need to beat UNI before even contemplating a Spartan bloodbath--I agree with Jaybate that Bill Self would make an extraordinary coach emeritus. But looking too far ahead can be what gets you beat. If HCBS eventually builds a body of work that bcomes a major branch on the vast KU coaching tree, it will be from taking it one game at a time, one possession at a time. You're not going to play very good defense if you're thinking about the post-game party. So carpe diem, Bill! And we want young people to come and play at KU not just because of an un-paralleled legacy of winning, but also because it's a great place to get an education and maybe even have a little fun along the Kaw. KUdos to HCBS and his entire staff for winning the Higher Ed brackets!

And speaking of the KU coaching tree, here where I live, the University of Northern Colorado set a record with the most wins in school history--coached by none other than Tad Boyle.

RCJH!

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