Sunday, March 21, 2010

March sadness for Jayhawks: OKC end of the road for KU fans

Kansas fans watch the final seconds of KU's 67-69 loss in the second round to University of Northern Iowa, Saturday, March 20, 2010, in Oklahoma City.

Kansas fans watch the final seconds of KU's 67-69 loss in the second round to University of Northern Iowa, Saturday, March 20, 2010, in Oklahoma City.



Kansas falls to Northern Iowa

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The Jayhawks lost to the Panthers Saturday in the second round of the NCAA tournament. Kansas ended its season 33-3.

Reader poll

Which NCAA Tournament loss in the last 20 years stung the most?

  • 1997 Arizona 23% 1698 votes
  • 1998 Rhode Island 4% 323 votes
  • 2005 Bucknell 14% 1041 votes
  • 2006 Bradley 2% 184 votes
  • 2010 Northern Iowa 54% 3978 votes
  • Other 1% 124 votes

7348 total votes.

Audio clips

2010 KU-Northern Iowa

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— Down one with 42.8 seconds left, his Jayhawks breathing with new life after staggering all game to catch up with Northern Iowa, Tyshawn Taylor went for the steal.

And missed.

An open Ali Farokhmanesh hit another game-securing three-pointer, Tyrel Reed committed an offensive foul, and the Jayhawks would be sent home early from the NCAA Tournament they were supposed to win, 69-67.

And that means Lawrence resident Laura Dahnert’s father, seated next to her in Section 321, will just need to go to St. Louis and beyond on his own.

“I’m not going to the Final Four,” she said, leaving her dad — a Georgia Tech alum whose Yellow Jackets remain alive in the Midwest Regional — to fend for himself. “You’ll be going. I’ll be at home.”

As improbable was KU’s comeback two years ago against Memphis that won a national championship, the Jayhawks couldn’t finish a late charge that had enlivened the crowd for what would be the season’s final few minutes at Ford Center.

The sluggish start that had become a familiar nuisance all season long simply had stretched too far, lasted too long and, ultimately, tightened its grip on the top-seeded Jayhawks, the NCAA Tournament’s overall top seed and favorite to win it all.

Next year can’t come soon enough.

“It’s sad, but life goes on,” said Mary Rodriguez, a retired schools administrator from Lawrence, joined by her family in Section 306. “They’ll be just as good, if not better, depending on who sticks around. Everybody’s got to do what’s best for them, but we’ve got a good coach and he’ll be able to work with what he has.”

Tara Crotchett, who followed her ’Hawks to Oklahoma City from the Kansas City area, is counting on Xavier Henry and Cole Aldrich returning for next season for another run at a national championship.

That’s the hope, anyway.

“We hope their fathers will help them realize that one more year of college is worth more than that big (NBA) paycheck,” she said. “You never know.”


barrybonsoir 10 years, 11 months ago

I hope they take the paycheck and finish their degrees later down the road. Thanks to those guys for contributing to the legacy of Kansas basketball.

skragglydoo 10 years, 11 months ago

“We hope their fathers will help them realize that one more year of college is worth more than that big (NBA) paycheck,” she said. “You never know.”

You have GOT to be kidding.

Lance Hobson 10 years, 11 months ago

Sluggish start is right. How could they not be more motivated for such a big game? Did they not care? Didn't they know UNI was good, that they had won 29 games? I guess the answers are the same as the answer of the question of why Brady Morningstar was out driving drunk after curfew in the middle of Boot Camp. This team just didn't know or didn't care about the sacred opportunity they had. They had talent, a great record, and some great moments. But they didn't have it. They weren't special like a true championship team. Next year's team needs a leader, and I don't know who it's going to be.

tstanlick1909 10 years, 11 months ago

Next year's team leaders are Marcus Morris, Tyshawn Taylor and Mario Little. Most likely including Selby/Knight

leenyong 10 years, 11 months ago

Yes, we had a great regular season. A great regular season should have already well prepared us for the final test. Getting a knock-out in the second round is like getting a grade of "F" for the whole season - rightfully so. I am not here to put blame on anyone. Looking at the photos posted here, I know the players and coaches were feeling much hurt than I do. We need to learn from the mistakes to make us stronger in the future. Coaches and players have much shorter time to prepare during the NCAA tournament. Players will play the way they have been playing all year long; regardless if they are playing KSU for the 4th time or UNI for the 1st time. I believe, come tournament time, coaches play a much critical role to be able to quickly detect the opponent's weaknesses and apply the necessary adjustment. Getting an "F" is not acceptable from any perspective. The players and coaches worked so hard throughout the whole regular season was to achieve the ultimate goal - to win the NC. We failed, and we should find out why we slipped. Higher expectation yields higher achievement.

Kye Clark 10 years, 11 months ago

This team accomplished numerous great things. Reaching the 2000 win plateau. Winning a tough Big 12 conference by 4 full games. Sweeping "rivals" K-State & Missouri. Winning the Big 12 Tournament. Playing a tough schedule and only having a couple of hiccups. However, when you enter the season number 1 and are there all but 3 weeks of the regular season and enter the tournament as the #1 overall seed and prohibitive favorite to win it all, this season has to be viewed as a disappointment. When Sherron & Cole openly say they came back to win another National Championship and the team doesn't even make the trip to St. Louis (much less Indianapolis), you can't sugarcoat it. Massive disappointment.

A couple of musings. I think this team was flawed from a personnel standpoint (as was previously mentioned). I love Sherron. One of my top 5 favorite Jayhawks. However, he never quite got rid of the mindset he acquired last year when he needed to put this team on his back all the time. He consistently was putting up the most shots/game by 5 shots or more, and its not as if he was burning up the nets. I had hoped after strong performances following his shaky senior night that this wouldn't hurt us, but 4-15 and 0-6 from 3 really killed us tonight. Even if he'd had a below average shooting performance today we'd have survived, but we couldn't survive a poor one. Heck, that sloth Jordan Eglseder was 2-3 from beyond the arc! We are also severly flawed at the other guard spot. Tyshawn, Tyrel, & Brady simply do not give us what we need to field a truly elite squad. They all have their good qualities. Tyshawn is fast & athletic, things you can't coach. He has the potential to be the best perimeter defender on the team with his length & quick hands. However, he is prone to defensive lapses and is a sub-par shooter. Tyrel is a lights out shooter, but that's about it. He should never attempt to drive to the hoop, as was evidenced today by his two charging violations. And the guy can't guard a ham sandwich. He is a severe defensive liability. Speaking of defense, its time to stop lauding Brady as a "lock-down defender". It's simply not true. He may be an above average defender, leaps & bounds better than Tyrel and more consistent than Tyshawn, but not great. Offensively he is a good passer, but not a threat to score.

Kye Clark 10 years, 11 months ago

Looking ahead to next year I'm hopeful yet skeptical. At the guard spot, I'm really hoping 3 things happen. One, we land Knight, Selby, or Lamb. Two, that Elijah progresses enough to push for a starting role. And three, Tyshawn matures and works on his game to become more of an impact player. This means improving his jump shot. Landing one of those recruits is essential. Credit to Tyrel & Brady, and the staff for that matter, they were more or less throw in players rounding out different recruiting classes. Probably 3 star recruits, maybe expected to push the guys in practice but never expected to be impactful players. They have maximized their abilities, but have probably hit their ceilings, and like I said are not elite level players capable of helping this team field an elite squad. This is also why the progression of Tyshawn & Elijah is needed. If these things happen we may be better at the guard position next year than we were this year. Again, much love for Sherron, but it seems like he lost his defensive edge once he became a starter. He did a great job on Derrick Rose in the Championship game, but I don't know that we ever saw that kind of performance from him again. Watching K-State tonight I was reminded of what complete and premiere guard play looked like. Pullin & Clemente are forces at both ends of the floor, and you have to have that kind of play in the tournament. I think we are in a better position with our post players, although Cole's defensive presence will definitely be missed. The Twins were great this year, I just worry about how they will be affected without the big fella there to provide defensive support. They are both already susceptible to foul trouble, so I'm hoping they can make the kind of strides defensively this year that they made offensively this past year. If TRob progresses he may be a beast, and we still have yet to glimpse what Withey could possibly bring to the party. Not sure what to expect from the 3. X is gone. He's projected to be a 1st round pick on every mock draft board, and that was always his plan. College one year, then the NBA. I was very pleased with what he brought to this team, including today. He became an above average rebounder and defender, his jump shot helped spread the floor, and he learned to drive the ball and not simply settle for that jumper. Mario Little & Travis Releford are coming off redshirts and have very different games. We will have plenty of question marks heading into next season. Who will be the leader(s) of this team and what will be the identity of the team? All major players from our national championship team will be gone. Can they pull themselves off the mat following today's disappointment and mesh into a team capable of advancing to a Final 4? Who will get the minutes at the guard spots and can anyone other than Tyrel be counted on to hit a jump shot?

Kye Clark 10 years, 11 months ago

I'm always excited at the start of each season to see how the new year's squad will look. To Sherron, Cole, & X, thanks for all you have meant to Jayhawk nation. You will be missed. Rock Chalk Jayhawk.

wupass 10 years, 11 months ago

Yes, drgnslayr, it feels like you've been to a funeral with the flu. If I feel like that, imagine what the team, Coach Self and Coach Manning are feeling... Thanks for everything you guys- for a wonderful season. Hate to see Sherron, Cole, and X go. You will be missed. Sherron and Cole had a piece of the 2008 National Championship and Big 12 champs every year they were at KU. X had a piece of the Big 12 championship this year. Not too bad, hugh? Cole and X are off to the NBA, but all of them will one day look back on their KU days --- those were the days, my friend. Rock chalk, baby. KU!

Steve Brown 10 years, 11 months ago

ict I didn't have to guts to write what you correctly said about SC.

slyr: you were sick at the funeral-felt like I was in the suit with closed eyes.

Jack Wilson 10 years, 11 months ago

Unfortunately, I drove to and from OKC from the KC area yesterday for that fiasco. My mood is not one of humility. I have said this all year, only to be called "disloyal", etc. by those that drink the Kool-Aid and have "blind-faith".

Where are kvskuball, blownjay, babyjay1, jayhawkinmullen, ginger 2015, etc? The "it is right because coach Self says so", the "you're not a division I coach like coach Self", the "enjoy the ride" crowd?

Enjoying the ride now? How smart is coach Self now? And how dumb are all of us that sounded the alarms this season?

Jack Wilson 10 years, 11 months ago

Again, I'm not in the mood for humility today. Many of saw this coming recently, and all year. And we continued to be forced to listen to the cheerleaders who ignored the obvious.

March 18: babyjay1: Relax. It's just frustration with playing down to our opponent. Fortunately, we tend to push the gas vs. the top teams we've played. But if we take UNI lightly ... March 14: Melrank: I hope you don't think UNI is a gimme. They'll smoke UNLV. March 13: anthonyzal: First, just reading Soobawls' comments in context with everything else he has said on this website. Next, don't question my loyalty to this university, or the team simply because I dare suggest a concern over their complacent play. That alone displays your complete ignorance (but that ignorance is prevalent among the cheerleaders around us). It is really silly to go into this tournament as a cheerleader. Been there too many times over the last 20+ years only to be disappointed. Faith has nothing to do with .. blind faith might. 30-2 isn't luck. I agree. But when you tread the line multiple times, walk on the edge over and over, the odds are against you. This team has continued to demonstrate a propensity for getting itself into bad spots against inferior teams (as well as the ability to get themselves out late .. and with just plain luck, see at Colorado, at KSU). However, it is one and done. One slip up and the whole season down the drain. This team has developed significant tendencies, and those were on full display over the past two games. It would be stupid, though to ignore the character of this team .. which is to fight back and do what needs to be done to win. I felt much more comfortable with the 08 team heading into the tournament. Maybe stats don't bear that out. But this team seems to make everything difficult and that tendency concerns me (and with that, I guess I am disloyal as a Jayhawk, "can't be counted on", and "un-Sherron" -- whatever that means. Ask anthonyzal for more brilliant commentary). March 13: I would say that this team is lazy, lacks focus, and is complacent .. at times. Then (another obvious point) they turn it on. This is a very dangerous characteristic heading into the tournament. You an count me among the surprised if they reach the Final Four. This type of team is ripe for the tournament upset beginning with the 1 vs. 8/9 game. It will be interesting to see if the team has a different focus come the NCAA tournament.

Jack Wilson 10 years, 11 months ago

(cont) March 11: Today's game was a microcosm of the season. This IS the 2009-2010 Kansas Jayhawks. I guess I really don't fear the games against Syracuse, or Kentucky, or any top 10. team. It is the next level, the Oklahoma St, Marquette, Louisville, Georgia Tech, BYU, Northern Iowa, Clemson, Wake Forest, etc. This team has demonstrated that they can ratchet it up when needed. It just seems that they continue to play a few notches below where they should. But they win and continue to win. 1 down, 8 to go. March 6: icthawkfan316: Not sure the point of the question. Talent-wise, I think we're the best team in the country along with Kentucky (talent-wise). On your other comments, I completely disagree, and completely agree. Agree - chance for letdown, Missouri having more to play for, etc. Disagree - This season has been marked by wild inconsistency and games where, frankly, we got lucky and won (see 1st KSU game, Colorado, and perhaps even Cornell, Texas A&M). More importantly, poor effort/execution. A loss doesn't expose a huge flaw .. that's already exposed. We do not exhibit the consistent offensive effort and execution to take care of teams that are inferior to us. What I'm looking at more is our approach .. the effort part. I saw that vs. KSU Wednesday. If we don't carry that over, my concern is that the inconsistency we have seen all season is simply etched in stone for this team. And it is that inconsistency that will spell doom in the NCAA tournament.

cobweb 10 years, 11 months ago

Northern Iowa schooled the Jayhawks, showing that a bunch of white guys who look like they hang out at the Wheel too much, can beat a bunch of stud athletes by making few fundamental mistakes. No dunks, no future NBA contracts, no publicity, no millionaire coach, just good, solid basketball. Pretty humbling, huh?

RockCaCO3 10 years, 11 months ago

High, you sound like a fair weather fan if I've ever heard one. Self's a good coach, we had a good team, sh!t happens. Geesh.

Jack Wilson 10 years, 11 months ago

RockCaC03: No, a realistic fan. I don't wear a skirt, I don't do cheers. I don't think my team is the best just because they are my team. I don't have "blind faith." You, like many on this webpage, judge someone's loyalty to the university by whether they call into question obvious team flaws. This was so freaking easy to see coming this year. Self's a good coach, yes ... but if the three at the buzzer goes in vs. Davidson in 08, what would be your opinion?

Yes, we had a good team. But team wasn't supposed to be good, it was to be great. This was a final four year. Sh!t doesn't happen if you're prepared.

Michael Bratisax 10 years, 11 months ago

Completely unprepared. No excuse will ever be acceptable. Worst loss in NCAA tourny history for KU. Why wasn't this team ready? We were awful in both games. Looking forward to seeing NEW faces i.e. Johnson on the court next year.

Jack Wilson 10 years, 11 months ago

And to all of you Tyshawn Taylor lovers out there, where was our wonderful 2 guard for much of the last 12 minutes? On the bench. He pulled his same old stupidity, he can't hit the three, same as the first month of the season. Nothing changed.

Again, being humble about this ain't in the cards here. I saw this all year and was told by KULA, etc., how great Tyshawn was. And coach Self didn't have the confidence to play him when it counted?

That is why, my friends, we should have invested minutes and experience in the better player, EJ, from the start. We couldn't have ended the season any worse.

Lance Hobson 10 years, 11 months ago

This team is like the "Un-Locke" on Lost. They may look the same as past champions at first glance, but when you look them in the eye, you knew something was missing. They didn't have the heart and soul of a champion.

A cure for future complacency may be showing the photos of this team's disappointment. Maybe that would wake the guys up and make them realize they actually need to come out and play like champions from the opening tip.

There was a good article about the Hawks in ESPN where the writer kept listing the Hawks' credentials and Self kept saying "But..." He knew something wasn't right with these guys.

champs528808 10 years, 11 months ago

Trying to figure out how this happened? Just realize this year's squad was not the TEAM of 2008. Just think about it:

Robinson vs. Collins - Robinson was the glue guy while Collins spent too much time thinking he needed to take over (thanks to last year) Chalmers vs. Taylor - really no need to comment, but Taylor's been a disappointment (go back to fight night with the football team) Rush vs. Henry - another no-brainer, Henry has no business going to the NBA, but his dad does, and that will be the decision (btw, I hope he goes) Jackson vs. Marcus - Jackson was a leader and Marcus was the team MVP, so edge goes to Marcus Arthur vs. Aldrich - could be viewed evenly when looking at Arthur's athleticism and Aldrich's defense. Bench - Kaun, Collins and Aldrich played their roles to a tee. Reed was our outside threat, but moving Brady back to the bench was the chemistry killer. Taylor was bad for chemistry and if you think about yesterday, how many games did he fire up 5 three pointers in a game? Jamie Dixon coached him over the summer and said he wouldn't want him - because of chemistry problems! Was it a good season? Yes. Great season? No, but what will the returning players do?Find a TEAM leader would be a good start.

tical523 10 years, 11 months ago

Mario Little, Elijah Johnson, Tyrel Reed and the Morris Twins will all be great leaders, no problem in that category. We just have to come out of the gate every game with more fire next year, it finally caught up to us.

Kye Clark 10 years, 11 months ago

HighEliteMajor - congrats on sounding the alarms. Does that make you feel less miserable today? Being able to say I told you so? If not, the only difference between you and the "enjoy the ride" crowd is that they took more pleasure in beating KSU 3 times, Missouri twice, in winning the tough Big 12 by 4 games and winning the conference tournament. I don't doubt that you are a loyal fan, so I'd guess that you are pretty miserable & disgusted today, so sorry I guess that you didn't enjoy the good times as much as others did.

Look, I'm not a blind "cheerleader", I pointed out on numerous occasions where we could improve. As far as you citing a comment I made, I'm a little hazy as it seems that parts of my post that you were responding to are missing, because if not the part where you respond (I'm assuming it's your response, since you don't indicate where my post ends and yours begins) with "a loss doesn't expose..." doesn't seem to fit in the context of what I had posted. I do remember you saying that talent-wise we were better than missouri and you were worried about the game, and I said we were better than pretty much everybody talent-wise. I'll stand behind that, as well as not being as concerned as you were in so much as the '08 team demonstrated similar inconsistencies. The '08 team didn't dominate anyone in the conference tournament, also lost at Stillwater against a team that didn't shoot the lights out of the building as was the case this year, lost in Manhattan against a team not as talented as this year's squad, etc. Again, you may have been right, but coming on here to say "I told you so" as if yesterday's loss somehow vindicates you...well it brings me right back to congrats.

b1afide 10 years, 11 months ago

lighthawk, thanks for making me laugh this morning.

KEITHMILES05 10 years, 11 months ago

The last numerous games this team came out sluggish and appeared non-interested in playing. Why? What happened? Were there issues amongst themselves? Sadly, they have only themselves to be upset with.

With all the high emotion displayed at the end of the game if they could have used that and channeled it at the beginning and not dug a hole for themselves the result would likely have been different. Just because they felt they were the better team didn't mean squat. This team was never sufficiently challenged when they needed to be.

Hopefully, this will be a lesson learned by them. Just because the front of the jersey says Kansas doesn't win games. Playing like you want to win does.

Sherron? You are such a big time gamer. You are da man. I love you like a son. You did KU proud.

Kye Clark 10 years, 11 months ago

As for your statement "Self's a good coach, yes ... but if the three at the buzzer goes in vs. Davidson in 08, what would be your opinion?" and "Sh!t doesn't happen if you're prepared", well first of all you could do a lot of things with the "if..." scenarios. If Wayne's jumper goes in against Bucknell, does that make Self a better coach? If that three by Farokmanesh doesn't go in yesterday and we end up winning, does that make Self a better coach? You can do that "what if" game from now til the end of time, but at the end of the day Coach Self has the credentials he has, which includes winning a National Championship, so don't try and "what if" that away from him or the '08 team. Every coach, analyst, expert will tell you that success in the tournament requires a little bit of luck, getting a favorable draw, getting hot at the right time, and not running into another team getting hot. By your own admission luck plays a part at times, stating that "we were 'lucky' to win at KState & Colorado, and perhaps at home against Cornell & A&M." In '08 Davidson caught fire, beating higher seeds Gonzaga, Georgetown, & Wisconsin. Does that mean that they were a better team than those they beat, or that the teams they beat were unprepared? I'm not saying that UNI was lucky yesterday, but basketball is a fluid, inconsistent game. If it wasn't, the best team every year would go undefeated. Carolina was clearly the best team last year and mowed through the tournament. Yet they lost 4 games last year, including 2 against unranked teams (one of whom didn't make the tournament), a home game, and in the 2nd round of their conference tournament. Speaking of North Carolina, did Roy Williams suddenly become a better coach after leaving Kansas? How many times did he enter the tournament with the best team while at Kansas yet failed to win it all? Yet it has happened twice for him at North Carolina. Again, little bit of luck, getting hot at the right time, favorable draws.

Jack Wilson 10 years, 11 months ago

icthawkfan316: I hear you. I am frustrated, and thus the "I told you so" tone. Part of dealing with a team, a program, that I am so invested in emotionally.

You pointed out the Missouri game. Great point. This team would get motivated every so often. I was the games against lesser names, the "we are entitled to win" games that ultimately spelled doom for the season. You are right, we are "better than pretty much everybody talent-wise."

I know your "congrats" is tongue in cheek. I it should be. I wish I had been wrong.

Jack Wilson 10 years, 11 months ago

icthawkfan316: We lost to Northern Iowa. On the biggest stage. Digest that. Think about that. The "it's the NCAA tournament" thing rings hollow.

Your analysis absolutely ignores everything we have seen from this team, this season. They were rarely dominating, rarely put teams away, started slowly over and over, played down to their opponents, lacked a killer instinct, and did not play to their talent level. It has been their all season.

Doug Merrill 10 years, 11 months ago

High Elite Major Your perspective is so warped it is not possible to tune into reality. You are angry becuase you chose to drive all day and the team didn't win for you? This team accomplished everything it was supposed to, including the number one number one seed. They had a bad game. When bad games happen in the NCAA single elimination Men's basketball tournament it is a real disappointment and you lose. It happens to 64/65 teams. No matter what you thought should have happened, there was a better than 70% chance that THIS would happen. Get a grip and frankly, yes, ludicrous recriminations of coach and players everytime they lose the final game of the season is senseless and boring. Where are we now? Still aware that we have a great team and a great coach. Where you are sounds like mad-hattersville. I am sure you are providing much amusement to the KY fans who troll here, tho, so I guess congratulations really are in order for you being such a "savant".

Kye Clark 10 years, 11 months ago

HighEliteMajor - yeah it's no consolation, but it is what it is. Sure it sucks for us, but upsets happen. It's not the NBA or MLB, where over a 5 or 7 game series there is little doubt who is the best team. If this was college football and some computer generated one game it would likely be us vs. Kentucky for the National Championship, and we probably get up for that game a little more. In a one and done, you bring your A-game or you likely go home. We didn't yesterday, and you're right we didn't several times this season.

I might have said it in the post that you had referenced early, but the saying "winning covers a multitude of sins" is what rings most true today. We were winning, and against good teams. I think a lot of fans, myself included, were encouraged by the fact that we only lost 2 games, both on the road, and both under unusual circumstances. I can't speak for everybody else, but I was probably guilty of looking at the stats, seeing wins over quality opponents, seeing a tough strength of schedule and a number 1 RPI rating, and thinking about what that would mean in a tournament setting. I figured (like they commented yesterday during the game) that we get everybody's best shot every time out anyway, so the tournament really wouldn't be any different from the regular season. I figured we were so deep, that we withstood slumps from Cole, Tyshawn, X, Sherron, and Brady that we if one or two of these players was having an off night in a tournament game we'd experienced enough of it during the season that we would survive. I don't know that I'd characterize it as "drinking the Kool-Aide", I think it's easy to believe the best rather than the worst, especially when everybody on ESPN and other sports outlets had the Jayhawks at least reaching title game.

Kye Clark 10 years, 11 months ago

Trust me I have thought about little else than losing to Northern Iowa...NORTHERN FREAKIN' IOWA! I live in Wichita and have heard it non-stop from Wichita State fans, who have an inferiority complex regarding KU (I tell them it's not a complex, you're inferior), and who for some reason are now lauding the victory by UNI as a win for themselves since they play in the Missouri Valley. I will say this, and you can call it a rationalization if you want to, but here it is. It took almost a perfect storm for us to lose that game yesterday. Sherron having one of the worst games of his career (if not the worst. 4-15. 0-6 from 3. 5 turnovers). Cole twisting an ankle. Marcus getting into foul trouble again, at least one on a pretty questionable call. Brady disappearing again. I know you're not a fan of Tyshawn, but even by your standards 0-6 has got to be his worst shooting performance. Poor rebounding performances by BOTH of the Twins. That slug Elgseder making two 3s! UNI playing an almost flawless game for the first 34 minutes or so. You take away any one of those circumstances and we survive. I'm not trying to make excuses. Almost all of that is of our own doing. I just think that as a coach you can only do so much, but its hard to prepare for things completely falling apart. Certainly there is only so much of a contingency plan for two of your guards having the worst shooting performances of their careers.

Benjamin Piehler 10 years, 11 months ago

i kinda have to wonder why the press wasn't applied until it was too late

Jack Wilson 10 years, 11 months ago

Read what icthawkfan316 posted above, I have quoted it below. Friends, this IS drinking the Kool-Aid. This is believing the hype. It demonstrates the mindset that permeated many, if not most, on this message board. This is saying "hey, they're 32-2, what are you complaining about." The quote from icthawkfan316 below if for those of you that said "Quit complaining and enjoy the ride". This is all of you that refused to see the major flaws. Read the post of icthawkfan316 below. And perhaps, you might be a more educated basketball fan the next time around.

icthawkfan316: "I might have said it in the post that you had referenced early, but the saying "winning covers a multitude of sins" is what rings most true today. We were winning, and against good teams. I think a lot of fans, myself included, were encouraged by the fact that we only lost 2 games, both on the road, and both under unusual circumstances. I can't speak for everybody else, but I was probably guilty of looking at the stats, seeing wins over quality opponents, seeing a tough strength of schedule and a number 1 RPI rating, and thinking about what that would mean in a tournament setting. I figured (like they commented yesterday during the game) that we get everybody's best shot every time out anyway, so the tournament really wouldn't be any different from the regular season. I figured we were so deep, that we withstood slumps from Cole, Tyshawn, X, Sherron, and Brady that we if one or two of these players was having an off night in a tournament game we'd experienced enough of it during the season that we would survive. I don't know that I'd characterize it as "drinking the Kool-Aide", I think it's easy to believe the best rather than the worst, especially when everybody on ESPN and other sports outlets had the Jayhawks at least reaching title game."

Jack Wilson 10 years, 11 months ago

hawkinator: Because Self said we're a "pressure" team, not a press team. He only goes to the press as an absolute last resort. That's how he coaches. But we should have never been in that position.

Kye Clark 10 years, 11 months ago

HighEliteMajor - The outcome may have proved you right, but that doesn't mean everyone else was wrong. The more I think about it I don't believe it was drinking the Kool-aide at all. Bill Parcells once said, you are what your record says your are. What is a better indication of predicting success than past experiences and the data obtained from past experiences? We had the 5th toughest schedule and finished the year tied with Kentucky for the best winning percentage in the nation over the course of 34 games. Which is the outlier, the anomoly? The 34 previous games, or the game yesterday? What is more likely, that we lucked our way into 32 wins, or that we were unlucky yesterday? Sure we had flaws, but who doesn't? I still believe that we entered the tournament with as good a shot (or better) as anyone to win it all. I'm not the only one. People who are not fans of KU, who's job is to analyze college basketball, who most KU fans think have an east coast bias...picked KU to win it all. And if that isn't good enough, Vegas had us as the favorites. That's people who's jobs it is to set odds, who if they do a poor job end up costing the house millions of dollars. So it didn't happen, but does that mean that it couldn't have happened? That we were all uneducated idiots looking through rose-colored glasses all year? Of course not. Someone pointed out the Patriots losing to the Giants in the Superbowl. I'm sure on some message board all year long there was some guy wailing against windmills that the team had flaws, and when the Patriots lost was on the message boards saying "see, I told you so!" Even a broken clock is right twice/day.

BCRavenJHawkfan 10 years, 11 months ago

HEM & icthawkfan: No doubt everyone is frustrated about this and there are many perspectives and mine is probably a hybrid of what is posted thus far.

First, ask yourself if this team was better than last year. If the answer is yes, then how is it last year's team went farther, although they did go out early in the Big XII tournement.

Looking back I think it is fair to say the high water mark on the way this team played during the year was Temple. After that what really happened is this team did only what was needed to squeak out a win. The ultimate truth is KU was seeded into this tournament based primarily on it's record and top 25 ranking at that time.

Did this team improve after Temple? Hard to say. Looking back I don't think they did. Our conference schedule was favorable on the front end and tougher on the back end. As the conference progressed it should have been apparent that KU's shooting from outside was becoming not so reliable and defending the 3 was becoming equally not so reliable. Early in the year Marcus started getting control of his perpetual foul problems, that to, started to return down the stretch of conference play.

No doubt "you are what your record says". But that's where the job of the coach is to step in and make it known otherwise. I also think this team was confused with the musical chair play of Tyshawn - starter, not a starter, what's my role, etc. What I also saw were guys that did not respond to Self's call for 10% improvement.

Now don't get me wrong. I'm not saying this team was crap, far from it. I do think they over achieved on some levels. Now, should they have been challenged the way they were against NI? Well some say no, KU should have wiped the floor with those guys. I suggest look again. NI played FUNDEMENTAL basketball. They played a style that KU struggled with when playing other teams during the year.

In short, they were not improving throughout the year as needed and after coming out of the Big XII with more than anyone would have predicted, there was simply a let down.

rockychalkwalkin 10 years, 11 months ago

Love the Hawks, but I feared there was too much recent 'lack of energy' from the opening tip off...and it would catch up to them. Oh how painful to go down in defeat and I can only imagine how the players feel today. To be #1 for much of the season with high expectations going into the tremendous pressure that wears at your mental. Perhaps in coping, they became too complacent. We can second guess all of it endlessly. At the end of the day though, they are young men that came together through scholarships and recruitments to play for an awesome legacy of basketball at the University of Kansas. I thank them for their efforts that 'so much' more often than not...made me proud and excited to be a KU fan. And to the credit of Self and the players, they have represented us Kansans with just as much class in defeat as they have with all their wins. To those moving on, I wish you well. To those returning, we look forward to 2010 - 2011 with our beloved Jayhawks!! Thanks for a great season!

Vincent Patterson 10 years, 11 months ago

The scary part about all of this is that Bill Self is not going to change. Too stubborn to change and fully utilize what opportunities he has being the head coach at such a program. You get blue-chippers in every year but what do you do with them, redshirt em, make em ride the bench? What good is it to have all of the chippers come in here if you don't play em and use them to your advantage? If I were Selby/Knight, I would have to think twice about coming here because there is a good chance that they will wind up just like EJ and T-Rob, watching the season from the pine, while other inferior athletes get the tick to keep the boosters happy. Bill, all you have to do is press, press, and press some more. You recruit great athletes, just the type of athletes that would take Mike Anderson's philosophy and make it the most feared, dominating basketball program in the nation. You have the opportunity to put 5 out on the floor, make them give you 110% effort on both ends of the floor, and when they get tired, replace them with 5 fresh legs, without missing a beat. Yet, you are sold on running this Hi-Lo, turnover prone, half court bullsh*t, with a few fastbreaks from time to time. Look, I love me some KU, I really do, but until Bill gives up his SELFish/Stubborn ways, expect this same type of outcome for years to come. PRESS BILL!!! PLEASE, JUST PRESS!!!!!! ALL GAME, NOT JUST WHEN YOU ARE BEHIND! PRESS!!!!!!!

Darsves 10 years, 11 months ago

I think some people are being too hard on HCBS. Sure the press worked late, but I'm not entirely sold that we were out-coached. A coach can only do so much and once the game starts, it's up to the players to execute. We had good shots, they just weren't falling and sometimes the players just made stupid individual decisions. It just feels like our players, no matter what Bill could've said and I'm sure he fired them up beforehand, that the players really thought that this was going to be an easy day against a bunch of old white kids who were inferior to them athletically. I mean, Coach Self has nothing to do with Collins not being able to hit a three the entire game or most of the three point misses by Northern Iowa bouncing straight off the rim into the hands of one of their players. I just think it was very poor execution by the players, both mentally and physically, than it was Bill Self's preparation.

Darsves 10 years, 11 months ago

To elaborate more on what I just said, when you have a team with so much individual talent as Kansas, sometimes their ego is going to rear it's ugly head, particularly when it's against a lesser opponent. When you're a Northern Iowa, what ego do you really have? You know your team isn't the most talented in the country and you aren't picked by anybody to win. Your only motivation is to go out and play your best and prove to the country why they are wrong for discrediting them. This game was just one I think many of the KU players saw as an entitled win for them and that personal mindset got the best of them this day.

DCCuse 10 years, 11 months ago

Kansas Fan:

My condolences on a tough loss over the weekend. This kind of thing happens in the tournament - they ran into a team that played above their level and obviously KU played far from their best. Overall the team had a great year and I'm sure Self will have them back at the top again next year.

P.S. Please don't let Kentucky win the damn thing.....


cmb9698 10 years, 11 months ago

I don't know how many people--especially KU fans--want to admit it but NO. Iowa was the better team Saturday. Ten minutes into the first half I called my friends and family and told them to watch this game because they were about to witness the mother of all upsets.

I'm a Kentucky fan all the way and the match up with Kentucky and Kansas, assuming both teams met up, would be a difficult game for Kentucky. Now I'm thinking that no one wants to play NO. Iowa.

Kevin Huffman 10 years, 11 months ago

skragglydoo (anonymous) says… “We hope their fathers will help them realize that one more year of college is worth more than that big (NBA) paycheck,” she said. “You never know.”

You have GOT to be kidding.

***To me you could almost aruge "You've GOT to be kidding," either way. It all depends on where they're projected. Cole might as well leave. Good defensive big men (see Hasheem Thabeet) are almost always drafted in the top 3 - 8.

Xavier on the other hand. I'd be surprised if he's any higher than the tail end of the lottery right now....probably lower.

While I think Cole could only hurt his stock coming back, I think Xavier could do himself a world of good to come back. Again it all depends on what NBA Scouts say, not so much what Xavier, his father, or the KU fans or coach thinks. If he's pretty solidly out of the lottery I think he has no choice but to come back. Something tells me with only having an offensive game in like half of his games that he's not going to be rated that highly but could propel himself there by proving that he has "that game" next season.

Tony Bandle 10 years, 11 months ago

What confuses me the most was that there is no "B" in Northern Iowa and there wasn't a hint of orange anywhere!!

Good luck DCuse..hope your big man recovers and you blast UK.

Antidote for next year: Collins graduates, CJ leaves with X, Tyshawn transfers, thus opening up the 1 and 2 spots for EJ, Royce, Reed, Morningstar, Selby and Lamb.

Mario, Markieff and Marcus take over as our take "no prisoners" team leaders.

Withey gains about 20 lbs of muscle and T-Rob gains HCBS's confidence.

Releford comes back ready to rock.

No one will expect Kansas to do anything next year.....that's when we are the most dangerous.

Take heart, all...if I'm not mistaken the sun has risen the last two mornings;}

jhokfan 10 years, 11 months ago

Ultimately the blame is going to fall on the coach and given Self’s experience with early round failure one would think he would have this team prepared. Still, I can’t help feel there is a certain amount of arrogance on the players part. We have seen them in this situation all season long. Not playing up to their potential against lesser opponents but ultimately finding a way to pull it out at the end. They’ve been told all season long how great they are, perhaps they bought into the hype a bit too much.

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