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Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Enjoy the ride: Bill Self wants Jayhawks to stay loose, have fun in NCAA Tournament

Kansas players Tyshawn Taylor, left, Josh Selby and Thomas Robinson celebrate a bucket and a foul created by teammate Mario Little against Oklahoma State with time dwindling in the second half on Thursday, March 10, 2011 at the Sprint Center in Kansas City.

Kansas players Tyshawn Taylor, left, Josh Selby and Thomas Robinson celebrate a bucket and a foul created by teammate Mario Little against Oklahoma State with time dwindling in the second half on Thursday, March 10, 2011 at the Sprint Center in Kansas City.

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Kansas University basketball coach Bill Self will have a game plan — stock full of Xs and Os — for Friday’s NCAA Tournament opener against Boston University.

You can bet the Jayhawks, by 5:50 p.m., Friday in Tulsa, will certainly know all of the Terriers’ tendencies.

Yet the technical aspect of this game, and any other games the Jayhawks may play in the 2011 NCAAs, may actually not be as important as one huge intangible — KU’s own state of mind.

“Being loose and having fun this time of year is imperative for success,” said Self, who added, “I think we’re more relaxed this year (compared to last year’s 33-3 team), I do.

“That was a loose group playing Texas (in Sunday’s 85-73 Big 12 tourney title victory). It may have been a loose group playing K-State in the finals last year (preceding KU’s 1-1 showing in the NCAAs). For whatever reason, I think we have a couple of guys on this team that I think will keep things loose for us.”

Those guys?

“There’s three — Brady and the twins,” Self said of senior Brady Morningstar and juniors Marcus and Markieff Morris. “Brady is a fun guy. I think he does a good job keeping everything loose.”

Looking back, Self believes the Jayhawks, who entered last year’s NCAA Tournament as the No. 1 overall seed, were wound tight in their 69-67 second-round loss to Northern Iowa in Oklahoma City.

“I’d say probably after the game started,” Self said Monday on the Doug Gottlieb ESPN radio show, asked when he first noticed the players’ tight collars.

“You get behind, start pressing a little bit. It’s a long game and certainly things happen early, but even going into the game before against Lehigh (90-74 first-round win), we were down eight to 10 against them. I thought our guys were feeling it a little more.

“They’d been ranked No. 1 all year with the exception of two or three weeks. Maybe they felt they were carrying the extra burden a bit. I’m glad Ohio State is No. 1 overall. That’s fine. Let everybody talk about them. We just need to play,” Self added.

KU’s eighth-year coach said it all starts at the top.

“From a preparation standpoint, we will not change much,” he said, “but I will definitely try to create a looser atmosphere because I know they care. If this team didn’t care, we wouldn’t be 32-2. I just want to create an atmosphere where they are loose.

“I think there’s ways to do it. One thing about a coach,” he told Gottlieb, who like Self is a former Oklahoma State player, “is he can affect the mood of a room. You played for coach (Eddie) Sutton. When he was in one of his moods, didn’t the whole room come down? When he was in one of those moods where he was feeling good and uplifted, didn’t the whole room come up? Coaches can do that.”

Senior Tyrel Reed is ready to play carefree basketball in the NCAAs.

“I think the key is to be loose, have fun and enjoy the experience,” Reed said. “If you are too uptight, you don’t make shots. You don’t do things you need to do. Enjoy it. Have fun.”

He agreed with Self that last year’s Jayhawks, who were overall No. 1 seed, may have been felt a little more pressure than this year’s squad, which was ranked No. 1 for just a week.

“This year, Ohio State kind of carried that burden,” Reed said. “We’ve just got to go play loose. Maybe last year we were too uptight. That could have been going on. We just need to have fun.”

Senior Brady Morningstar said the key to Friday’s game, besides following Self’s game plan will be to ... “go out and play like you know how to play, be excited, have energy like you are happy to be there. If you have fun and play ball like you can, the rest takes care of itself.”

• Morris honored: KU junior Marcus Morris on Monday was named second-team All-America by the U.S. Basketball Writers Association.

The first team consisted of Jimmer Fredette, BYU; JaJuan Johnson, Purdue; Nolan Smith, Duke; Jared Sullinger, Ohio State and Kemba Walker, UConn.

Morris was joined on the second team by Kenneth Faried, Morehead State; Jordan Hamilton, Texas; Ben Hansbrough, Notre Dame and Derrick Williams, Arizona.

KU’s Morris on Monday also was chosen as one of 20 players to appear on the final ballot for the Wooden Award.

• Thursday’s practice: The Jayhawks will hold an open practice for fans from 4:25 p.m. to 5:05 p.m., Thursday at BOK Center in Tulsa. Boston’s practice will also be open from 5:55 p.m. to 6:35 p.m.

• Recruiting: KU has offered a scholarship to Jamari Traylor, a 6-7, 210-pound senior power forward from IMG Academies in Bradenton, Fla., according to Rivals.com. Traylor has received offers from St. John’s, Indiana, Minnesota and Virginia Tech. KU is after Traylor’s teammate, DeAndre Daniels, a 6-8, 180-pound senior, who is ranked No. 9 by Rivals.com. Traylor is not ranked at this time.

• Possible Illini matchup: Self was asked by Gottlieb about a potential second-round game against Illinois, where he coached three years before heading to KU.

“It wouldn’t be emotional, but I think certainly there would be some incentive,” Self said. “I’m sure they would love nothing more than to beat whoever if they are fortunate enough to play (after first-round game against UNLV) and we are fortunate enough to play. If they are playing Kansas, there may be a little extra because I used to coach there. Maybe playing Illinois would be a little (extra) for us because I used to coach there. I think we are far enough removed. Eight years is a long time. There won’t be any of those feelings as you would get I think if you were freshly removed from a job.”

• More on Buffs’ snub: KU coach Bill Self again expressed shock at Colorado’s being snubbed by the NCAA Tournament Committee.

“I think every coach in our league is very disappointed for Colorado,” Self said Monday. “Those guys in my opinion without any hesitation deserve to be in the tournament. I don’t have the other tournament resumes in front of me, which you probably need before you can be an expert. You need to be able to study it, and I’m not (an expert), but I didn’t see a team that finishes 8-8, really 10-9 (after postseason tourney) in the third best league in the country with four wins over top five seeds, to me, that is unbelievable. Six wins against top 50. There were teams on the bubble that had two against the top 50 or three. I am hurting for Tad (Boyle, CU coach and KU grad) and his players because I think they really deserve to be in the field.

“Texas getting a four seed blows my mind. I thought they had a two locked up,” Self added. “I like their draw to advance and I think matchups are much more important (than seed).”

Comments

100 8 years, 8 months ago

Staying loose is fine...

I'm here to remind our Jayhawks that...

Ohio State in the final poll released yesterday received almost all of the votes. Kansas received 14.

So to the Morris twins, I have to say...

"April 4th.... That's the day you show the AP who the real #1 is."

One game at a time boys... Fight 40 minutes of every game. Own the stat sheet!!!!!!!!!!!

baldwinjhawk 8 years, 8 months ago

DOES ANYONE KNOW WHY TRAVIS RELEFORD IS NOT PLAYING ANYMORE??????

JHawk74 8 years, 8 months ago

Baldwinjhawk, He is the 10th guy in the rotation right now. Bill Self only plays 8 to 9 guys during the tournament games (unless there is a blow out win). Who does Releford replace in the lineup for playing time? Releford is not going to play much the rest of the year unless we have significant injury problems.

Lex Valdez 8 years, 8 months ago

let us prove the doubters like dickie v wrong! i agree that the morris twins must lead us to victory... as long as mr taylor gives us 6 games like he had against texas the other night in the big 12 championship game we shall rejoice come april 4th! rock chalk championship is on the way!!!....

KU 8 years, 8 months ago

I would settle for "Mr Taylor" giving us ONE game like he had against Texas......this Friday. Then repeat as needed. It's not a 6 game tournament; it's one-and-done if we don't come to play. Take nothing for granted. Be shocked by nothing.

It's all match-ups. I like our potential match-ups all the way to the Elite Eight game. But of course, who really worried about the match-up with Northern Iowa last year?

hawkitup 8 years, 8 months ago

Honestly, I worried about Northern Iowa when the brackets were released last year. I told my wife, "If we get past Northern Iowa we will be in the final four." They were the one team I thought that had a chance at tripping us up to get to the final four.

eway12 8 years, 8 months ago

I was worried about Northern Iowa. Like Self said, it's about match-ups not a particular seed. Northern Iowa last year was a tough match-up for most teams, but especially for us because we didn't play nearly as fast as we do this year so we had trouble making the game more athletic. This year our match-up trouble would be an off-shooting night against a team that plays 5 in the lane on D and can muscle with the twins and TRob. We are not as consistent as last year but we do have the athleticism to dictate the flow of the game if the boys are focused.

KU 8 years, 8 months ago

Yeah, we all said "Northern Iowa is a tough match-up" on paper, but how many people REALLY gave them the credit they proved they were due BEFORE the game? I think not many, as evidenced by the VITRIOLIC reaction to the loss afterwards! "We just lost to NORTHERN IOWA?!?" was the mantra of MOST KU fans.

We play EXACTLY 1 possession more per GAME ("faster") than we did last year according to kenpom.com, so I'm not buying the "we're better at speeding up the game because we are more athletic than last year" argument. Creating TURNOVERS speeds up the game and creates more possessons, whether you're more or less athletic. Thsi team does a VERY poor job of disrupting the opponent's offense with turnovers. It's not too bad at team defense, but it's hardly the 2008 version.

The match-up problem I see this year is if we run up against a real big, athletic wing player that Brady can't slow down. He did a great job against the kid from UT and he still scored 21 points against us. Fortunately, Tyshawn had the game of his life.

actorman 8 years, 8 months ago

It's funny that Dickie V had supposedly come around and apologized for doubting KU this year, then he picks us to lose to Louisville in the Sweet 16!

Bob Thompson 8 years, 8 months ago

Did Dickie V do any KU games this season. I don't remember turning off the sound on the TV to listen to the radio and watch the game....

ccarp 8 years, 8 months ago

Think he called the KSU game, or at least one where he apologized for picking us fifth and acknowledged all future league titles come through Lawrence. Looks like he's slighted us again, I think that is a good thing. We usually do the opposite of what he predicts. Let's make him eats those words again!

ku_tailg8 8 years, 8 months ago

If you rely on Dick Vitale for your info then you are a moron. There are plenty of other espn guys that have better knowledge than Dickie V. The guy only watches ACC games. Who cares what he thinks!

rh39437 8 years, 8 months ago

i agree.im ready for him to go away!!

funkitect 8 years, 8 months ago

i pay attention to him, because i pick the exact opposite of whatever he picks. he's like lou holtz doing the pre-game pep talk for football teams. if lou is on your side, i'm sorry to say your chances of losing increase.

don't take this as a slight for lou, have tons of respect for this legend of a man, he just seems to jinx teams. dickie v on the other hand, is a complete and utter moron in every sense of the word - not to mention, the worst ACC homer i've ever witnessed.

KU, please use his moronic picks as motivation, just like you did during the regular season.

kureader 8 years, 8 months ago

I'll look forward to the next time ESPN sends Dickie V to Allen Fieldhouse to cover a game. "We'll be waitin' for you baby-y-y"

Alohahawk 8 years, 8 months ago

Drop the words "Baby", "ACC","Duke", "North Carolina", "I'm tellin' ya" and "PTP time" from Dukie V's vocabulary and what do you have? Yeah. I couldn't think of any other words either.

NotWiller 8 years, 8 months ago

Aloha- I believe you are left with "diaper dandy." And not much else.

Kirk 8 years, 8 months ago

Who cares? What, is it an insult that Dickie V picked somebody else in the region? How many final fours has Self been to, anyway? One?

Self is a great regular season coach, but he's prone to an early exit in the tournament. It's happened a LOT.

I think KU will win out this year, but this whole disrespect game is boring.

NJHAWK 8 years, 8 months ago

How many final fours has Ducky V. been to?

John Randall 8 years, 8 months ago

Probably every one since he quit coaching – and hasn't had to buy a ticket yet . . .

wyansas 8 years, 8 months ago

Yes. Staying loose is imperative, as is keeping the edge when we inevitably get punched in the mouth.

TRUEBLUEKU 8 years, 8 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

Chris Shaw 8 years, 8 months ago

Good Stuff, Resor! It's almost here buddy. Greatest weekend in sports.

HawkBBall 8 years, 8 months ago

Best 3 1/2 weeks! MLB and golf force me to do yard work.

Viggo3003 8 years, 8 months ago

Whose going to to Tulsa? I decided I'll break up open the piggy bank for Houston. Rock Chalk Championship baby.

jchawkfan 8 years, 8 months ago

Perfect way to start out the morning.

tulsahawkfan 8 years, 8 months ago

Tulsa is about to be crimson and blue. Sure beats that crimson and cream I'm used to seeing around here.

Teri Jester 8 years, 8 months ago

i agree. stay loose boys! you see how well it worked when you were having fun in the big 12 championship.

jaybate 8 years, 8 months ago

I don't believe in happy and loose.

I don't believe in grim and tight.

I believe in coming to play. Do your job. Away all boats.

Triple Towers of Power--Cus, Kieff, TRob, come to play.

Brady and Tyrel--come to play.

Tyshawn and EJ--come to play.

Josh Selby, you're moment is coming--come to play.

Mario Little, you will make your mark sometime over the next six games--come to play.

Travis Releford, your number will be called and you will respond--come to play.

Jeff Withey, you will play ten minutes that will win a game--come to play.

Guys who never get in, listen: one of you, though you cannot believe it now, will be the difference between a ring and an exit--come to play--every one of you.

Away all boats.

waywardJay 8 years, 8 months ago

One of you who never play will become Roderick Stewart ? Or Archie Marshall ?

Jonathan Allison 8 years, 8 months ago

1.) Utah State is ranked ahead of K-State in both polls. Yet K-State is a 5, and Utah State is a 12.

2.) Colorado is the ONLY team to receive votes in either the AP or the Coaches poll and not make the tournament.

http://msn.foxsports.com/collegebasketball/polls

I just thought that was very interesting.

KGphoto 8 years, 8 months ago

Colorado received the same number of votes as UCLA (7 seed).

But don't forget, this is about tournament expansion. CU just happened to be the most egregious omission. There was quite a list of schools that got jilted for UAB and VCU. Lots of expansion fodder.

I imagine before long we will have every team in the tourney. Then we will be arguing over who has to play-in (more games), and who gets the byes. Which won't matter too much in the end result, and will probably add an extra week to the overall dance, making it an round month and pushing it until mid April. Just a guess there, on the structure, but one thing for sure, expansion will be the end result, and CU will probably be remembered for that more than anything else.

John Randall 8 years, 8 months ago

The Division I post season already includes every team (except Ivy non-champs). It is called "automatic bid". No one is out of consideration until they lose in their conf tourney. In that sense, the tourney already lasts four weeks and includes everybody.

This system guarantees that only one team finishes the season with a win – the other 320 or so all lose their final game. Also insures that all but one start the next season with a winning streak of zero.

Alohahawk 8 years, 8 months ago

Don't forget the NIT winner also wins their last games, although in an inferior tourney. Nothing to hang a banner on.

Jonathan Allison 8 years, 8 months ago

Do all 16 Big East teams get invited to the Big East conference tournament? I think that was something new this year.

Also, the independents don't have a conference tournament.

Tim Bingaman 8 years, 8 months ago

I know that this isn't an original thought, but I see CU as a member of the PAC 10 and am about as sorry for them as I would be if the Oregon State Beavers got snubbed.

Nebraska and Colorado are no longer deserving of my loyalty, when it comes to supporting my conference. Mizzou over Cincinnati, absolutely! K-State over Utah State and Wisconsin, of course!

I'm not mad at CU or NU because they left. KU will eventually be in another conference, but I will stop spending time on those 2 programs.

Rock Chalk!!!!

tulsahawkfan 8 years, 8 months ago

Wouldn't say they're the same as Ore St or others... they do have a Jayhawk as their head coach.

Alohahawk 8 years, 8 months ago

The snubbing of Colorado exhibits the non-respect the committee has shown for the Big 12 conference's performance this season. That's also apparent in the seeds given to the other Big 12 teams. That in itself belittles KU's accomplishment as the Big 12's champion. If KU had lost to Texas in the championship game, they would, by the standards shown to the rest of the Big 12 teams, have been given a #3, or perhaps, even a #4 seed replacing Texas. And they wouldn't have rewarded Texas with anything more than a #3 seed.

The Big 12 conference also loses the money (Something like $235,000.00) which each Big Dance participant brings in for being chosen to compete. That is another advantage BCS conferences have over the Mid Majors. Look how much the Big East benefits from having eleven teams chosen this year. Be a member of a huge conference and, win or lose, you gain. Depaul had a terrible season this year, but as a member of the Big East, what's their cut of the NCAA cooperative pie?

Martin Rosenblum 8 years, 8 months ago

So, Eddie Sutton could bring the mood in a room down or pump it up based on his moods. Moods, huh? Maybe there were reasons for the moods. Anybody have any ideas what could have affected his moods?

RockCaCO3 8 years, 8 months ago

I'm not gonna answer that question (but it's pretty funny).

RockCaCO3 8 years, 8 months ago

Uh, I was referring to his KU's dominance over his teams but thanks for your input Francis.

KGphoto 8 years, 8 months ago

It's 7am and you're thinking about Jim Beam?

Kent Wells 8 years, 8 months ago

I know. Pick me! What is alcohol and prescription meds?

RockCaCO3 8 years, 8 months ago

Marcus Morris "Second" team? Whatever.

Clarence Haynes 8 years, 8 months ago

I like JuJuan (sp?) Johnson, but I've got to say that Johnson and Purdue sputtered toward the end of the season. Marcus really came on strong, but is this a case where the Big Ten PR machine won out?

Linda Daxon 8 years, 8 months ago

Maybe that will be incentive for him to come back next year and then both Keif and Cus can be first team All Americans!

omng392 8 years, 8 months ago

That would be Irish Wiskey and its almost St. Pats Day...

Karen Mansfield-Stewart 8 years, 8 months ago

We seem to play great when we are intense and focused, not loose and having fun. We were loose against OSU in the Big 12 tournament. We were focused and intense against Texas.

Jonathan Allison 8 years, 8 months ago

I think that I, and Bill Self, would disagree. But don't worry, it's not the concept that we disagree on, it's really just the semantics.

Against OSU, maybe they had the appearance of loose in the pregame warm-ups or in the locker room, but they came out tight (nervous).

And against UT, yes, they were focused and intense, but they only looked tight in the first 10 minutes. After they saw some shots go in, they really exhaled and just let the game come to them.

jchawkfan 8 years, 8 months ago

Looking into recruiting news. Looks like Self might be thinking Twins are leaving. Since he is going after another 6-7 player along with Anderson who I think is a PF, along with DD. Which I guess is good/bad. Good because that means they are both playing well enough to get drafted high, which is leading to our success. And selfishly bad because they have both become a favorite of mine to watch, and I would miss them. But Coach Self and Staff have showed time and time again that no matter who they lose they are able to shift other players in and have success. So that being said lets win this (Insert own word) thing. RCJH!!!!!

Jonathan Allison 8 years, 8 months ago

My guess is that you're likely right about the twins. How many scholarships do we have available? Don't we have the three seniors, plus one that we didn't use last year, plus any early defections?

And we've got one commitment? And are hoping for Ben McLemore, D. Daniels, and maybe a couple big guys?

Niether Anderson, nor Traylor likely will be guys Self wants to start or rely to heavily on next year (hoping that TRob, J Withey, and J Wesley can hold down the fort), but if the twins are gone, we might be forced to play some freshman just like we were when the twins were freshman.

KU 8 years, 8 months ago

Speaking of recruiting, you can bet that opposing coaches will be getting in the ears of our recruits (especially guards like McLemore) with "See what happened to Josh Selby? See how Bill Self took a certain one-and-done player and tore down his confidence? See how he gets 7 minutes per game and has an assist-to-turnover ratio of less than 1 in the last 5 games? Do you really want to go there?"

jchawkfan 8 years, 8 months ago

I think your right plasticJH, three plus the one Conner is using. Four for sure plus whoever leaves early. I just have to think the Twins will leave. And I really don't blame them. I think they are just as ready as anyone else going into draft. Momma Morris would be our only hope for them to stay. So there is 6, and I will not go as far as Selby. For this conversation I say he stays. Recruits signed or offered, and feel free to add I'm just throwing the names I know out there. Tharpe (Signed), DD (Offered), Anderson (Offered), Traylor (Offered), McLemore (Offered). Just a feeling I think Self is looking for a monster class in 2012 headlined by P. Ellis.

montanahawk 8 years, 8 months ago

will coach Self pull the scholie from Conner? I thought I understood that conner stays on scholie, not sure if that came from someone here or from coach Self.

Jonathan Allison 8 years, 8 months ago

I had forgotten that Conner got the "extra" scholarship last year. I remembered that after the summer we still had one available. Thanks for catching that for me. I highly doubt Coach Self will pull Conner's schollie. Even if he legally can do that (I don't know if he can or can't), I still would give it a <1% chance.

Dale Kroening 8 years, 8 months ago

We have 2 schollies left after giving one to Naadir, but walkon Conner Teahan is on schollie this season, so if HCBS needs it, he can pull it from him I would think with no problems. Correct if Im wrong or if Im misinformed anyone ? Also if the twins leave, problem solved, but really hope that doesnt happen.

John Randall 8 years, 8 months ago

What is the over-under on games started by Conner Teahan next year?

If you say any less than 15, I want the over.

The scholarship award and the redshirt season were not independent events, friends.

John Randall 8 years, 8 months ago

What is the over-under on games started by Conner Teahan next year?

If you say any less than 15, I want the over.

The scholarship award and the redshirt season were not independent events, friends.

TxJyHwk 8 years, 8 months ago

Conner was only given the scholly for one year (because he had an extra one).

Technically, all scholarships are one year and can be "non-renewed" at the coaches/schools descretion. However, most coaches/schools don't back out of a scholarship because it would cause PR nightmares!

Dale Kroening 8 years, 8 months ago

Wesley is a walkon and barely 200 pounds, Im willing to bet TReleford will be in the big rotation before Wesley. Dont get me wrong, I like Wesley, but hes a walkon/ transfer and wasnt highly recruited and to be honest other than being a great dunker, hes really not that good. I hope Im wrong and Manning turns him into a player, but Id be shocked if he gets more than mop up minutes next season.

clevelandjayhawker 8 years, 8 months ago

The only team that can beat KU is KU

Have fun and enjoy the ride....one game at a time

BCRavenJHawkfan 8 years, 8 months ago

Here's what tells me this squad is a bit more relaxed than last year:

They are willing to engage in some trash talk!

Not too much, but enough to suggest they have an aggressive mentality as oppossed to a withdrawn defensive mentality,

waywardJay 8 years, 8 months ago

Excellent point.

Last year we had False swagger. This year, We got Tyrel reed shouting down tht eantler's and Kieff busting Baja Oklahoma's Chops, And then literally busting their chops.

Interesting thought, Do you think "kieff motivated them more for their win over AM than the game they would face against Kansas ?

Tim Bingaman 8 years, 8 months ago

It's easy to be loose until you are ice cold and your opponent is raining 3's. This philosophy is fine, but won't keep us from losing.

Self needs to realize that his bench can beat most teams in the county. I know we have excuses for the Texas game, but Self should not have left our starters in to "shoot through" a drought like that. Get some guys in there that are not cold!

Hopefully, HCBS scours these message boards for coaching tips and I have just helped us win the National Championship!!!!

You are welcome "Jayhawk Nation"

Jonathan Allison 8 years, 8 months ago

helping the players to be loose may not keep us from losing, but it will help us to win.

Also, I sure hope that coach is not reading message boards this time of year.

Chris Shaw 8 years, 8 months ago

I agree with you, Timmy! In crucial parts of "Big Games" in the past, Self tends to forget about his bench and becomes monotonous with the guys he feels will pull it out (Usually only going 7 deep). If Self ends up shortening his bench in the NCAA tourny, I don't know if that's a good idea. Although, Self shortened his bench against Texas in the Big 12 Championship and that seemed to workout okay.

zsn 8 years, 8 months ago

I wouldn't exactly call playing nine (although Selby only got 4 min or so, I think) "shortening the bench" - starting five + EJ, TRob, Mario and Josh. Of them, most got good minutes and had an impact, even Selby. Having 9 solid players and may be bring in Withey or Travis to spell some guys and may be play the middle of the zone for a bit is a great luxury in mind. We probably have the deepest bench in recent memory.

Chris Shaw 8 years, 8 months ago

zsn: Considering only 6 guys got extensive minutes in the Texas game I would call "Shortening the Bench". Plus, 3 guys playing over 35 minutes hasn't happened this season. I agree KU has the deepest bench, but if you don't utilize it.....it's not really considered deep.

Selby played 7 minutes EJ played 4 minutes Little played 7 minutes

T-Rob played 18 minutes Keff played 22 minutes Marcus played 32 minutes Brady played 38 minutes Reed played 35 minutes Taylor played 37 minutes

tis4tim 8 years, 8 months ago

If we ranked present and past KU teams by their smiles, this one would have to be right near the top.

Take a look at that photo above, then look at a few of the great shots taken by Nick Krug from after the Big 12 Championship game. I hope to see a lot of the same during this tournament run.

I know it sounds trite, but seriously, go have some fun, boys, and let the chips fall where they may.

Is it Friday yet?

Chris Shaw 8 years, 8 months ago

It sure does seem that Coach Self has thought a lot about that UNI loss last year. IMO it seems as though Self is really trying to understand the psychology, mindset, and dynamics of his players.

I don't know, I always get this nervous feeling in the pit of my stomach right before the NCAA tournament about the Jayhawks, but I also have a good feeling about this squad.

I just hope that if things aren't going exactly to plan that Coach Self changes his game plan and utilizes his depth. This is an area where Self has chosen to disregard his assets in crucial and critical points of big games in the NCAA tourny. With that said, I feel that all the characters and diverse styles of play with Selby, EJ, Little, and T-Rob coming off the bench (Totally different than the starting 5) will create opportunities for KU that we've never really seen before. Go Jayhawks!

Jonathan Allison 8 years, 8 months ago

I had that sinking feeling in my stomach before the start of the conference tourney. It was realized in the OSU game. But it was gone before the Colorado game. I don't have it for the NCAA tournament right now. Not yet, anyway.

Chris Shaw 8 years, 8 months ago

I sure hope Bill Self cut out Dick Vitale's bracket and pinned it in each of the players locker.

FarSideHawk 8 years, 8 months ago

Also Pat Forde, Diamond Leung, Luke Winn, Layden, and Stapes - None of them think Kansas can reach the final four.

Coach Self should pin-up these and only these brackets in the locker room.

RockChalk26 8 years, 8 months ago

I have had it with DIckie V. He needs to strike up a deal with the ACC and stay out of the national media. The guy has lost it, Baby!

FreddyinLA 8 years, 8 months ago

The only person I see uptight on the bench is Self.

Let T-Rob play through a couple mistakes. He’s going to make some. Happens every time. But the guy is a monster on the boards in the end.

Let Mario get settled into the flow even if he jacks up a couple of ill advised shots. He’s one tough kid and plays smart at crunch time.

Let the kids play. Don’t revert back to Okie ball. This team plays best at a quick pace and when the score is in the 80s+. Okie ball brings us down to the level of our opponent.

I know Rele has been banished to the depths of the bench, but it sure would be nice to see our best defender playing a role for us winning the only tourney that matters.

Brak 8 years, 8 months ago

Dude you should seriously apply for a head coach job at KU since you seem to know more about the team than HCBS. Would you prefer it if Coach Self sparked a fatty with the team before they went out on the floor, would that make him less uptight?

Funhawk 8 years, 8 months ago

Let's see, the Arkansas River runs through Tulsa. Roy's trick to loosen up the Jayhawks before the game worked. Go spit in the river! :) And, Bill, avoid the distractions of all your Okie friends in Tulsa. :)

Dale Kroening 8 years, 8 months ago

If he was really our best defender do you really think he'd be on the bench ? I like Travis and he's a good defender, but saying our best defender is stretching it just a bit. Not that he doesnt have that potential though, that ankle injury just killed his playing time though, and he hasnt beaten anyone out to get back in the rotation as HCBS said he would have to do. I think I trust the coach over anyone else..................Releford will get his time.

NebraskaJayhawk 8 years, 8 months ago

Screw being loose and having fun. Go out and KILL. Go out with a "killer" attitude.

If they are worried about staying loose, they will be tight. Go out and destroy your opponent for 40 minutes.

kennethst 8 years, 8 months ago

Being "loose" is all well and good.....but I wouldn't want them to go too far with that.....how about being focused?

Well.....Self knows what he is doing. I just wouldn't want them to be too relaxed. That's not a good thing, either.

John Randall 8 years, 8 months ago

Being loose is different than forcing yourself to act loose because coach said you need to.

Just go play the game as if it's something you always wanted to do and now have the opportunity.

rh39437 8 years, 8 months ago

the kansa jayhawks are the #1 seed in the southwest.....sweeeeeeeeet. bring it home guys where it belongs.......GO JAYHAWKS!!!!!!

hawksince51 8 years, 8 months ago

I agree that being too tight has been a problem for KU during several years with both Roy and Self and contributed to several early round losses to lower seeded teams. However, I do not like the term "loose." It reminds me of casual play, high dribbles, one handed passes, and lobbing up 3's instead of working the ball inside. I feel the key is focus starting with pregame preparation and then going out and executing. You have to expect pregame jitters and butterflies but once the ball goes up you go out and get it done. Get the adrenaline working in your favor and take the ball to the rim right from the start. I always admit to not being a fan of the 3, and one of the mistakes I have seen us make all too often is start shooting the 3 too soon, missing, getting behind, and then trying to use it to get back in the game. That should not be our game plan, especially in the early rounds, where we will clearly have an advantage inside.

kennethst 8 years, 8 months ago

Completely agree. Calm and focused is better!!

milehighhawk 8 years, 8 months ago

I hope Self is reading these comments for advice on how to prepare for the tournament.

I'm sure he'll be a successful coach some day.

Corey Shideler 8 years, 8 months ago

Yeah maybe one day he will win a National Championship... Oh wait. That already happened. Self is already a great coach and that can't be taken away. Seems like the thin Colorado air is screwing with your brain function. Nice avatar. Maybe you can change your name to RoyloverNoStatisticalKnowledgeHawk

Corey Shideler 8 years, 8 months ago

Thinking this may have been sarcastic. If so i would like to redact my last statement and apologize. March also makes me MAD!!!!

P.S. Colorado is Freaking Gorgeous!

Kirk 8 years, 8 months ago

He COULD use a new looser approach (or whatever) if it helps him avoid yet another early exit with a heavyweight team.

Hank Cross 8 years, 8 months ago

The best antidote for nerves is being prepared. Know what you need to do, have the confidence that you can do it, and then go do it.

There's a place for jokes and levity to make sure they're not overwhelmed by the task before them. When it's game time, however, make sure it's all business. When it was crunch time, did MJ look like he was having fun? In the Finals last year Artest talked Kobe going into his "Kill Mode." Bird was famously described as having the eyes of an assassin. Magic may have smiled a lot, but that was because Showtime was usually destroying the other team.

Chris Shaw 8 years, 8 months ago

"Failure to Prepare is Preparing to Fail" John Wooden

jchawkfan 8 years, 8 months ago

I wish I had a dollar for every time my High School Coach said that. It was also on a big poster in our locker room.

BCRavenJHawkfan 8 years, 8 months ago

Thanks kushaw. Local outlets are probably the only place to get these stories. I picked up the USA Today yesterday to get a nice large version of the brackets and read about the top teams. what I found was THREE stories devoted to Duke, one to Ohio State and one to Pitt. Care to guess how many devoted to Kansas? Here's a hint, T-Rob wears that number.

Ludwig Supraphonic 8 years, 8 months ago

Give Coach Consonants the 1st team All-Americans. Give CBS Pullen, Burks, Hamilton and the Morri. I like the Big 12 guys chances.

Ethan Berger 8 years, 8 months ago

Amazed about how many guys are taking the term "lose" the wrong way. Being lose doesn't mean drop your concentration or going out there and just smiling. Being lose is a term that probaly over 90 percent of coaches say for anykind of run. It really means to not go out there and panic. To stay lose is to keep playing within the gameplan, to play how you were taught to play. The worst thing you can do in sports is overthink. When Mario Chalmers hit that three, he was lose. He knew what he had to do and did it. You can be lose but still want to kill everyone. Lose isn't saying that your not motivated. All they have to be is prepared. If you have prepared for something, than you will be more relaxed about doing it.

Ethan Berger 8 years, 8 months ago

hahaha my bad, lose is a very bad word at this point.

kureader 8 years, 8 months ago

EARLY VEGAS ODDS

KU by 22 1/2 vs BU UNLV by 2 vs Illinois Louisville by 10 vs Morehead State Nortre Dame by 13 1/2 vs Akron K-State by 2 vs Utah State Missouri by 1 vs Cincinnati

RCJH!

gchawk 8 years, 8 months ago

Everytime I see a picture like the one showing TRob, all I can think about are those biceps of his, that young man has some serious strength. Good luck Jayhawks, just go in and take care of business.

JayHawkFanToo 8 years, 8 months ago

I agree. He reminds me of Dwight Howard of the Orlando Magic.Twenty more pounds and they will look like twins.

Curtis Stutz 8 years, 8 months ago

a note not as a Jayhawk fan but a college basketball fan

I hope everyone will join in boycotting these ridiculous play-in games or "1st rd games" as the NCAA is calling them

It was bad enough to push the field to 68, far more teams than need to play for the Nat'l Championship It got even worse when they announced their selections and included a handful of undeserving teams in the NCAAs Chances are nobody that wins in Dayton is going to be prepared to compete again in their "2nd rd game" and to make it even worse the winner of UAB/Clemson plays late tonight and then tips off the first game against WVU Thursday morning I love college basketball but I'm not about to tune into their fiasco

NJHAWK 8 years, 8 months ago

I guess the NCAA increased the number of teams to 68 (65 + 3) so that the Big East can have 11 teams in the field instead of 8.

TRUEBLUEKU 8 years, 8 months ago

Not sure. I didn't think it was that bad.

JayCeph 8 years, 8 months ago

I don't think there is ever going to be a 16 seed that knocks off a 1 seed in the first round since the new addition of the 'first four' equates to the first round now. The games that take place starting on Thursday now are being called the 'second round.'

This effectively cancels any chance of a 16 seed making history.

kennethst 8 years, 8 months ago

It will happen. It almost has happenned. Remember Holy Cross in 2002 or 2003??? They played even with KU most of the game until KU pulled away late

JayCeph 8 years, 8 months ago

Yes... but now it will never happen in the first round. THAT part of 'history' will never be made (according to the new format).

kennethst 8 years, 8 months ago

Never say never.....That's one thing I have learned in life.....and don't believe anything an "expert" tells you. I have learned that the hard(and expensive)way!!

JayCeph 8 years, 8 months ago

I don't think there is ever going to be a 16 seed that knocks off a 1 seed in the first round since the new addition of the 'first four' equates to the first round now. The games that take place starting on Thursday now are being called the 'second round.'

This effectively cancels any chance of a 16 seed making history.

John Randall 8 years, 8 months ago

Don't ask your browser to "go back".

Click on "View Your Message".

Woody Cragg 8 years, 8 months ago

Man I love being retired in March! Had a big ribeye on the grill, no one home but me & the dogs, & just watched the Big 12 Champ game again, with absolutely no interruptions. What an A$$ WHOOPIN! Texa$$ had it coming. Our entire team took them to the woodshed. It was soooooo good I might have to watch the 08' semi's & final again after supper. Last year at this time I had a one inch tear in my left shoulder labrum & couldn't enjoy anything. After the surgery it was even worse...for almost 2 more months. My advice; don't, under any circumstances tear a rotator cuff and do the rehab afterwards or you never get any mobility back. And DO enjoy the ride. It'll all be over before it has a chance to sink in. Long live the DVR!!! RCJH!!!

ParisHawk 8 years, 8 months ago

Hey, Coach Self says "have fun", then he has pictures of UNI put inside each locker! Talk about getting in a good mood...

Don't believe me? Listen to Marcus' podcast interview.

HawkWife 8 years, 8 months ago

Dear Lord, please hear Chuck's plea to KU and help him get through this rough time vith a KU victory in April.

packywacky88 8 years, 8 months ago

I'm so glad that no team from the f'ing state of Iowa is in the tourney. I never want to hear about that team ever again. WE NEED a victory in April to wipe out any memory of those dirty SOBs....but.... one game at a time...sweet Marcus, is all I'm asking of you.

didjabuti 8 years, 8 months ago

My bracket has us meeting with Syracuse in the title game. Not on purpose, just the way I saw the games going. But I'm really hoping it happens. RKJH!!

kennethst 8 years, 8 months ago

Be in the wilds of the Scottish Highlands on Championship night. Already made arrangements to watch the game online. It will start around 2:00 AM.....will watch every single second in the middle of the dark,rainy Scottish night. And I'm not good at watching KU in a quiet, dignified way.....usually screaming at the TV. I will wake up that whole hotel if I have to!!

If we win I will jump in the nearest freezing loch and run like a maniac up a mountain....and then on to the village to wake the locals!! Let them know a Kansas fan is amoungst them......and that Kansas is NATIONAL CHAMPIONS!!!!!

Oh....Aye.....and when that's done.....there will a bottle of Scotch. Oh yes....a bottle of Scotch.

REHawk 8 years, 8 months ago

Heck, Bill Self has little cause to worry about his point guard staying loose. Hasn't he read the post-game Big 12 Tourney Championship report? "The Ferrari is back!"

JayDocMD 8 years, 8 months ago

Hadn't seen this Baylor update: Not only no NCAA, but no NIT. Pretty funny if you ask me. Couldn't have happened to a nicer coach. Can't think of many coaches who did less with the talent he had. Maybe some of those recruits should consider bailing on Baylor (I'm talking to you Quincy Miller and Deuce Bello.)

http://espn.go.com/mens-college-basketball/blog/_/name/katz_andy/id/6219705/no-postseason-play-baylor-bears

kennethst 8 years, 8 months ago

Think I'll try an Irish whiskey tonight instead of Scotch.....still celebrating the victory on Saturday night......gives me a good excuse to have a drink!

Wales also has some whiskey.....beautiful country there.

REHawk 8 years, 8 months ago

Baylor collapse is enjoyable, though it is a shame that Big 12 has to display a coach who is such a weasel. At least this year the basketball world will not be exposed to him in late-season tournaments. How can a team with the Big 12's alltime leading scorer and one of the top freshmen in the nation not play well enough to get invited to the NIT? Yeah, Baylor recruits should take heed!

HawkBBall 8 years, 8 months ago

The only thing that could make me mad is the tv network switching from a KU game to another game because KU is whipping its opponent. My wife thinks those games are boring. I like them best. No stress.

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