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Kansas defeats Ohio State, 64-62

  • 7:49 p.m., March 31, 2012
  • New Orleans,

Sunday, April 1, 2012

NO FOOLIN’! Believe it: KU makes title game

Kansas guard Elijah Johnson takes in the roar of the crowd as he leaves the floor following the Jayhawks' 64-62 win over Ohio State on Saturday, March 31, 2012 at the Superdome.

Kansas guard Elijah Johnson takes in the roar of the crowd as he leaves the floor following the Jayhawks' 64-62 win over Ohio State on Saturday, March 31, 2012 at the Superdome.

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Podcast episode

Press Conferences & Post-Game Interviews

Bill Self, Elijah Johnson, Travis Releford and Jeff Withey

Kansas coach Bill Self and players talk to reporters following the Jayhawks' 64-62 victory over Ohio State in the Final Four on March 31, 2012.

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Podcast episode

Press Conferences & Post-Game Interviews

Ohio State's Thad Matta, William Buford and Jared Sullinger

Ohio State's Thad Matta, William Buford and Jared Sullinger talk to reporters following the Jayhawks' 64-62 win over the Buckeyes on March 31, 2012.

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KU vs. Ohio State

Box score

— Kansas University’s basketball team — the one with no McDonald’s All-Americans on the roster — will play in the national championship game Monday night.

“I can’t believe this,” ninth-year KU coach Bill Self said of his thoughts following a one-for-the-ages, 64-62 come-from-behind victory over Ohio State in Saturday’s Final Four semifinal at the Superdome.

“Of all the teams to make it this far ... ”

This somewhat-flawed KU team (32-6) erased a 13-point first-half deficit and nine-point halftime deficit and defeated a Buckeye team (31-8) for the second time this season.

“This has aged me a lot,” Self said with a smile, “but I’ve also never had more fun coaching a group of kids. How cool is it that the two winningest programs of all time play Monday for the national championship?”

Indeed, KU, which is second in all-time wins, will meet Kentucky, which is first, at 8:23 p.m. Monday with everything on the line.

“I feel I had to be as happy as I could get because that had to be as sad as they could get,” KU junior Elijah Johnson said of his reaction as Travis Releford inbounded the ball with 2.9 seconds left and Johnson ran out the clock on KU’s thrilling victory.

The final play came after a lane violation on a free throw that Aaron Craft deliberately missed after a KU foul in the backcourt.

The foul sent the sophomore guard to the line rather than letting OSU attempt a possible game-tying three on the final possession.

The Buckeyes inexplicably did not foul Johnson as the clock expired with KU still up by two.

“I don’t think they knew what was going on,” Johnson said of the final inbounds play. “They were trying to get situated. I saw the referee about to blow the whistle. I knew he was about to hand it to ‘Trav.’ I was trying to hide behind him and play it cool. As soon as the official handed it to Trav, I broke loose. By the time they realized what was going on, it was over.”

Earlier, Releford (15 points, six rebounds) had swished two free throws at 1:37 (following a Jeff Withey block of a Craft shot) to erase a 59-58 deficit and give KU a one-point lead.

Johnson hit a driving layup following another Withey block — this one of William Buford from behind — and KU led, 62-59, at 1:11.

“Travis is the most confident free-throw shooter I’ve ever seen. When he’s at the line, he tells me not to go in the lane (too soon),” said junior forward Thomas Robinson, who scored 19 points, 11 the second half.

“It shows you that all you need at the line is confidence, which he has,” Robinson added.

Withey finished with seven blocks to go with his four points.

“We fed off Jeff’s energy tonight,” said forward Kevin Young, who had five rebounds in 11 minutes.

Up three points, the Jayhawks benefited from a steal by Robinson, who took it away from Buford. However, on the ensuing possession, Withey was called for a controversial travel in the lane at :27.

Buford slam-dunked to cut the gap to 62-61 at :9.6.

Next, Tyshawn Taylor (10 points, 4-for-4 from line) swished two free throws, and KU led, 64-61 with 8.3 seconds left.

Taylor stole the ball, but gunned a pass out of bounds toward Johnson with 3.8 seconds to play, giving OSU a final possession.

“It was like a quarterback third-and-long, and he missed bad. It was not even close,” Self said of Taylor’s pass.

“He could have held the ball there, but that’s Tyshawn, too,” Self added with a laugh.

Up three, Self elected to foul Craft in the backcourt rather than let the Buckeyes attempt a game-tying trey.

“If they were in a two-shot situation, I might not have done it,” Self said of fouling, “but the first one was the one with pressure (in a one-and-one situation). He made it. The second one, he crossed the line way too early.”

Indeed, with OSU down two and its only hope a wacky rebound and stickback shot, Craft instead stepped over the line while horsing up a quick free-throw shot, and KU was able to inbound and end the game.

“That’s coach Self being the genius he is,” Robinson said. “We’re up three with under five seconds left, no reason to let them get a snip at a three. We fouled them and got the ball back and won the game.”

Withey finished with seven blocks while guarding OSU’s Jared Sullinger most of the game. Sullinger hit five of 19 shots and scored 13 points.

“I think my length bothered him a bit,” Withey said. “It was not my best game offensively, but defensively we did what we needed. He’s one of the candidates for player of the year. He can run, jump. I tried to keep my hand in his face.”

Cold-shooting KU hit just 11 of 30 shots the first half (44.6 for game to OSU’s 33.9) and missed five of six threes in falling behind, 34-25, at the break.

Robinson and Taylor combined for 14 points off 6-of-17 shooting. Buford had eight and Sullinger seven for OSU.

“I thought tonight we came out slow, like we were in quicksand,” Self said. “Let’s face it, it’s a different pressure out here tonight. At halftime, we said enough of this nonsense. We came out the second half and defended well, rebounded well, did everything that could give us a chance.”

Now it’s on to Monday’s game against Kentucky.

“I told the guys our Bourbon Street was our locker room,” Self said.

Comments

bbeckum 2 years ago

I won't say i haven't gotten nervous during games this tourney, but I have had a feeling that the hawks were gonna make plays down the stretch, as long as they can be close in the stretch.

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theend 2 years ago

About to have a scotch and call it a night..........Well......I wonder what tomorrow night will bring?? I'm going to be ready. Hopefully my heart can hold up.

I'm hoping for a big celebration.......and a national title!!!!!!!!!!!

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142466 2 years ago

I have watched many games in this year's tournament. I try to look objectively at all of it. What I see is this:

KU is the best team, defensively, in the tournament. This is one of the best KU defensive teams of the last 60 years. 1957's team may be the only KU team that is its equal, defensively. It is a beautiful thing to behold; rarely seen these days. Requires exceptional communication skills among all involved and god-given basketball instincts. Self must have really convinced his players that "defense wins games", not just paying it lip service. Certainly helps to have a 7 ft vollyball player anchoring it. What makes this truly amazing is that we are accomplishing all this with a thin bench and without getting any of our big three in foul trouble. That is not luck. Impressive.

One of the biggest reasons this approach has succeeded is that the overall level of offensive performance, across the entire 68 team field, is not very good. Blame the NBA poachers for that.

KU has a chance Monday if our outside shots go in. A title this year would be a greater achievement than 1988's. Without having looked at the Vegas line, I'd give us about a 35% chance of winning. So, it could happen. I'll definitely say this: our team this year is better than either of the teams in last year's championship game. So we shall see.

P.S. Kill all post-season league tournaments.

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2 years ago

I haven't seen any comment on this outrageous flop by Craft, opinions anyone!

http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/1035156/craft_medium.gif

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jmfitz 2 years ago

Dislike Jack Harry? I do! Sign this petition if you do so we can get him fired and hire someone who knows what they're talking about: http://www.change.org/petitions/get-jack-smacked-in-the-face. After signing pass to your friends and family so we can get as many signatures as possible! Thanks and RCJH!

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JayHawkFanToo 2 years ago

To all of you so called sports analyst/commentators/writers, underestimate KU at you own risk:

...and like Jack Harry, you'll get owned.

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William Blake 2 years ago

In a few days it will start thinning out in here until the fall...

So I'll take this opportunity to thank everyone in here for bringing their energy into what makes the Jayhawk Nation so great!

It has been a great year of Jayhawk magic and our fans deserve the "Hawk to Rock" award every single day of the year!

This has been the best year ever to follow this website because we keep adding gifted posters who offer so much to the Jayhawk conversation.

Rock Chalk, Jayhawk Nation!

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Alohahawk 2 years ago

After the last two seasons, and the way they ended, this team has taken up a different approach. In fact, if there were a book titled 'Destiny', there would be a picture of this year's Jayhawks on the cover. As Darth Vader so prophetically proclaimed to Luke Skywalker, "It is your destiny."

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JJHAWK 2 years ago

I think that's why they play the game.

The shoulda, coulda, woulda - those aren't winner's terms. So if you don't mind, I think we'll show up and try to win it.

And if you do mind - then take the Jayhawk out of your name and be an honest troll.

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theend 2 years ago

Sorry for all the posts.....but one last thought......I don't like that Jazz into CBS was using because it called us "the birds".

Uh no.........we're not "the birds"....

We're the JAYHAWKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Seth Peattie 2 years ago

from some tool on cbs sports:

I think Coach Self may be losing his memory at least as far as the 2008 NCAA tournament goes. The Kansas nine point comeback against Memphis was one of the most unlikely that I can remember. Memphis suspended one of the top free throw shooters, Andre Allen, before the tournament started, Memphis gave the championship to Kansas by missing countless free throws in the last stretch of the game and Mario Chalmers hit a three-point shot at the end of regulation that Sports Illustrated called a "miracle'. For me in 2008, the best team didn't win the National Championship. The Jayhawks should have received a National Free Throw Shooting Championship since that was what they were best at in 2008. While I read comments about Cal's final four appearances getting vacated, I don't think the press does a good enough job covering all sides of this issue. From news reports I have seen from Kansas on youtube, Darrell Arthur did not get into Kansas before his freshman season without some high school math grades being fabricated by someone. I don't think Memphis or Kansas' 2008 NCAA tournament runs should be vacated/should have been vacated, but it does raise the question why was Memphis punished and Kansas was not. Rose said he took the test and was cleared to play by the NCAA Clearinghouse two times. NCAA has provided no evidence to the contrary that I have seen. I'll be rooting for Kentucky on Monday and if coach Self's memory is correct about this Kansas team being not as talented as the 2008 team that didn't deserve to win the National Championship, then this won't be a very close game.

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theend 2 years ago

Everybody see that UK fans were rioting last night? Really??? Why???

Is beating rival Louisville that big of a deal?? What a joke. You will not see that from KU fans.

UK fans will probably riot regardless if they win or lose. Pathetic.

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KansasComet 2 years ago

The team has come together at the right time. Three close wins in five games. This team believes!!!! Kansas fans believe!!! Great game by everyone. We belong in this Championship Game. All the talk about how many players we lost from last years team, but look at what we have. A focused team, that believes in and encourages each other. Survive and Advance! To the Championship Trophy!! Let's go Jayhawks!!!!

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theend 2 years ago

Anybody know what former Jayhawks were at the game supporting the team? TT said one of the twins was there.

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Since79 2 years ago

No Guts...No Glory. We've proved we have guts...now we have to take the glory!

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toekneeshetler 2 years ago

How about "Dark Horses" by Switchfoot as the theme song for these Jayhawks?

I’ve made my mistakes I’ve seen my heart cave in I’ve got my scars I’ve been to hell and back again

Born for the blue skies We’ll survive the rain Born for the sunrise We’ll survive the pain

  • Chorus - We’re singing… Hey, You can’t count us out We’ve been running up against the crowd Yeah, we are the Dark Horses We’re singing… Hey! It’s not over now We’ve been down but we’ve never been out Yeah, we are the Dark Horses -Switchfoot

Rock Chalk!

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AsadZ 2 years ago

Defining moment and turning point of last night's game was right before the half. OSU had the ball with 20+ seconds left. Tad Matta called TO for a set play to score and not give ball back to KU. Craft drove in the lane with about 5 seconds left but missed the shot. T-Rob got the ball and passed it to Rele who sped to the goal and made the shot, barely beating the buzzer. Incredible play. Play of the game.

Huge play at the half. Instead of OSU going up by 13, KU cut the lead from 11 to 9. It gave tremendous boost/energy to the kids something they were missing the entire half. and this team needs to have energy to be successful.

They came firing away in the 2nd half. And the difference in final score was 2 pts.

No matter what happens tomorrow or next year or years down the road, this team is now my favorite all time KU BB team.

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theend 2 years ago

It's funny how those basketball "experts" on CBS keep saying Kansas will lose. Said it during UNC game......said during OSU game.

And we know they will say it again tomorrow night......probably even more.

Ignore them. Kansas CAN win! Sure......we may not .......but we certainly can!!!!!

We have some advantages.......most importantly KU is better coached. Also......we have great defense and I think we may be able to out-rebound them.

They are more talented.....no doubt at all. But KU is the better team!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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theend 2 years ago

Can't say enough good things about these guys....but here's a few:

Travis Releford????? Wow.....great game. Always on defense but his offense was spot on!

EJ??? Again.....clutch shooting. Awesome. He needs to keep driving to the basket......he is very good at it.

Kevin Young???? Ton of energy. Great rebounds. And he had a HUGE blocked shot.

Connor??? Big 3 point shot.

TT and TRob are consistently great.

WOW. Who would have thought?? Not me.

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Seth Peattie 2 years ago

9/10 people surveyed think that the writers at CBS Sports = dumb.

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Seth Peattie 2 years ago

Calipari has been waiting for this for four years. Revenge against Self. He may not admit it, but there have likely been more than a few nightmares of his team not fouling before the Chalmers dagger. He's been regarded as the elite recruiter, but has been questioned as an X's and O's guy, largely because of his inability to hang a banner.

He'll get another opportunity -- and this time it won't be a fair fight. Self will be bringing a steak knife to a sword fight while Calipari wields a machete.

"We know they have a lot more talent," Teahan said. "But talent doesn't always win games."

Kansas has shown that for much of the season, pulling away for the Big 12 regular-season title and now pulling the ultimate shocker by advancing to the national championship game.

But this is where it likely ends for Self and the Jayhawks.

"It hasn't hit me," Robinson said. "I'm still in shock."

Self vs. Calipari. Part II.

Only this time Self will be missing more than just Chalmers.

http://www.cbssports.com/collegebasketball/story/18208259/caliparis-second-shot-at-self-will-go-much-better-than-his-first

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machinegun 2 years ago

Tyshawn...8 seconds left...2 free throws...1 point lead...ACES! WTG my good man!

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MizzouBest 2 years ago

Well done ,Kansas! But stop congratulating yourselves and patting eachother on the back. It's not over!!

Now finish it!! You're Kansas........and you're supposed to be here!!

Now.........GO GET THE NATIONAL TITLE!!!!!!!

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Seth Peattie 2 years ago

that is the most ridiculous article ever written by Dennis Dodd. Kansas "choked?" you shut your dirty mouth when you're talking about KANSAS, Dennnis. Rock Chalk, America!!!

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William Blake 2 years ago

I guess we are no longer called "Kansas."

We have been renamed... "Kentucky's Last Obstacle."

http://www.usatoday.com/sports/columnist/lopresti/story/2012-03-30/kansas-final-obstacle-kentucky/53918330/1

Anyone need motivation?

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Jayhawk444 2 years ago

very interesting lane violation call at the end. it got me wondering - what would happen if a KU player intentionally got a lane violation forcing Craft to have to shoot again rather than take a chance on a whacky offensive rebound and 2-point putback?. If a team trying to defend an intentional miss by getting a lane violation, doesn't the shooting team have to shoot again on the miss? Is there any reason the defending team couldn't keep stepping into the lane on purpose forever or until the shooting team actually made the shot?

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Seth Peattie 2 years ago

"Are they beatable?" Pitino said. "No question about it because Vanderbilt [in the SEC tournament] did it. But you're going to have to play great offense, great defense and you gotta bring an A-plus game and they're going to have to have a B game."

Good luck with all that, KU.

Let's get this straight. Kentucky won Saturday with what was probably one of those B efforts. Kansas? It needed a stirring comeback against Ohio State which, let's face it, choked a bit. Monday's matchups already look mismatched.

Kansas' best chance may be that Anthony Davis, Terrence Jones and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist miss the team bus. This is not a shot at Kansas. Some reporter actually asked on Friday if Kentucky could beat an NBA team.

In December, reporters were asking if the Jayhawks would finish in the top three of the Big 12 after a loss to Davidson. No, Kentucky cannot beat an NBA team. It can beat Kansas mostly because there's no one else who can in this setting. And it already beat the Jayhawks 75-65 back in November. The score was tied at halftime, then the Wildcats just kind of took over.

http://www.cbssports.com/collegebasketball/story/18207293/nothing-can-stop-kentucky-from-its-destiny-especially-kansas

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dochambers 2 years ago

Memo to Bill Self & Co.

Please try to be a little easier on this old geezer's heart. This whole tournament has been a recipe for MI (that's Myocardial Infarction for those of you who haven't been there). I couldn't watch the Syracuse game in '03 because I had just suffered an MI.

How about you make about 75% of your first shots and play lockdown defense and never give those one-and-doners a chance...please!

Hopefully yours,

Pinehurst Jayhawk

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Jayhawk444 2 years ago

Anybody know of watch parties in Boston area?

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theend 2 years ago

Where are the following posters????

Thetus Haasehawk KUShaw JWLiddell

We need you guys here........especially now!!

Come home......and let's bring home the NATIONAL TITLE!!!!!!

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theend 2 years ago

The media has been trashing Kansas since day one. When they say KU can't beat Kentucky......they are WRONG!!!! Don't listen to them. They are just upset that their little sweethearts Duke and UNC lost.....and they just can't believe KU should be here.

WE ARE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

DEAL WITH IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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corvuscorax 2 years ago

Hey, Coach C., what's this we gotta learn 'bout lock down D before we get our rings?.... In 24 hours?

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corvuscorax 2 years ago

Give me fair whistles and Selfball and I'm all in.

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kshaw04 2 years ago

About 10 minutes into the game, I replied to a text from a friend in North Carolina who knew I was cheering for KU that said "I've decided they will win..just wait for the shots to start falling." I got a text at the end of the game saying "My faith has been rewarded. What a game." I've been believing all season and will continue to believe no matter the outcome on Monday!

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danno1313 2 years ago

This KU team is playing with HOUSE MONEY. They will come out and punch UK in the mouth on Monday. They have nothing to lose and the longer they hang around, the tighter the collar will get around UK's neck.

B*lls to the wall boys, WE GOT NOTHING TO LOSE!

ROCK CHALK CHAMPIONSHIP.........AGAIN!!!

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SEKrep 2 years ago

I still can't believe it...

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Scut Farkus 2 years ago

What most media analysts forget is that basketball is a mental as well as a physical game. Kentucky may have the better athletes, but are they mentally tough enough to take a shot and come back like KU has done so many times this year? If KU hits fast and hard I'm not sure UK will respond. If UK gets makes an early run we KNOW KU will come back and make a game of it.

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Scut Farkus 2 years ago

What most media analysts forget is that basketball is a mental as well as a physical game. Kentucky may have the better athletes, but are they mentally tough enough to take a shot and come back like KU has done so many times this year? If KU hits fast and hard I'm not sure UK will respond. If UK gets makes an early run we KNOW KU will come back and make a game of it.

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Joseph Kuebel 2 years ago

Wasn't withey a McDonald's all am?? I keep reading how we have none but he was a mcd all American before he went to zona.

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Eric Baker 2 years ago

Here's the talking heads' analysis of the two Final Four games:

Kentucky put in a sub-par effort against Louisville, and that's why they blew the 13 point lead.

Ohio State gave that game away by just not hitting shots.

Here's what I saw from the two Final Four games:

Kentucky went up against the top ranked defense according to KenPom and looked pretty bad offensively most of the night, including long stretches without a field goal. Louisville's lackluster offense failed to capitalize on those opportunities.

Ohio State played a great first half, but ran headfirst into the lock down defense of Kansas in the second half and had no idea what to do, while Kansas player after Kansas player stepped up big in some way to erase the deficit and put the game away.

If we play full game defense like we've been playing 2nd half defense, we win this one easily. Since that's unlikely, the key is to keep Kentucky in its half court offense, where it doesn't have quite the benefit of the its athleticism and talent like in the transition game. We will not win this one by a lot, but if we win the battle of the boards, shoot decently (not necessarily lights out) for three, limit the turnovers, and keep focused on defense, we have an excellent chance to win.

Oh, and getting Kidd-Gilchrist, Davis, or Jones in foul trouble would certainly help.

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jayhawker4real 2 years ago

Does this Kansas team have a chance against Kentucky? The national media says this isn't a team like the last several Kansas has sent to the tournament.

The answer is that Kansas has more than a chance against Kentucky. The national media are correct, but don't realize this Kansas team is even better. This team doesn't have that sense of entitlement, that we deserve to be here and everyone needs to bow down before our media reputation attitude, I have so disliked the previous two years. This team has earned the right to play on the biggest stage against the entitled, and they are going to show Kentucky that the national media do not decide who gets the W.

Will Kansas get the W Monday night? I don't know, that's why they play the games, but I know that this team has the best chance of bringing home that National Championship trophy of any team in the tournament. These Jayhawks have got guts, and guts is enough!

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JHAWKNPHX 2 years ago

RCJHK!!! Lets do this!!

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studio 2 years ago

Was anyone else at the Legends of The Phog game? The electricity generated by our favorite memories thundering through the A/V tickled giddy on the girls, crescendos rippled chills up and down the spine, and the cumulative sensations raised sentimental tears deep from crimson and blue hearts. This years team was introduced. As the crowd struggled to pick a familiar face from a line up of unimposing kids in street clothes, a smattering of enthusiasm swelled to an appropriate ovation minimally worthy to welcome these candidates to the incredibly daunting shadow of this Great Expectation. "Good luck, we love you 'cause you're family, we know you'll try your very best, etc." I thought to myself while squinting to spot a ringer in the recruiting section who had to be impressed despite this star studded extravaganza's interlude. This story, this Team, these Men, we all now know, eclipsed expectation. Sitting on the stoop here in The Garden District, nursing the hangover of disorienting elation experienced from Section 645 Row 11 of the Mecedes-Benz Superdome last night, I can't help but imagine the roar from the faithful, the fainting girls, the long autograph lines, the grins, and the high fives when this group, possibly in street clothes again, are presented to the Crimson and Blue Nation, while extending into yet another generation, powerful inspiration, as Legends. We'll gratefully be watching this destiny unfold Monday night from that same distant perch. Without a doubt, this group can handle it.

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SDSurferFan 2 years ago

What sets apart KU fans vs UK fans---fun filled celebration downtown vs pepper spray and fires in Kentucky.

Good work Lawrence!!!!!

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VaJay 2 years ago

Unlike his players, notably Sullinger & Thomas who showed a lot of class after the game last night, Matta took a different tack:

In an interview on the Big 10 network, Matta was asked what was the turning point in the game & he said "at the end of the half Aaron drives in & gets knocked to the ground, and they score at the other end" and later "we didn't shoot well in the second half". (blame refs first, then blame ball for not falling)

When asked "Defensively, did Kansas do anything to negate Jared's effectiveness inside?" He says "No, quite honestly, they were able to force him out a little bit, & the shots weren't going, he got some really good looks & unfortunately they weren't going down for us". (yeah, really good looks coming back at his face!!)

What a Dick!!! Just like in December, he shows no class after the game- no kudos whatsoever to the winners for playing well.

Good Riddance.

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cefitz 2 years ago

This reminds me of "Danny & the Miracles", a bunch of kids with a lotta heart & no quit in them. No matter what happens Monday this team will be remembered for their mental toughness. It is fitting that we have coach Manning on the bench, one more time, to help guide the Jayhawks to one more victory ! Rock Chalk Jayhawk go KU !

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FLJHK 2 years ago

Karma favors the Jayhawks. In some ways, this year is a blend of '88 and '08.

In '88 we had a hungry team of overachievers, exceptionally well-coached and led by a superstar. It's similar this year. TRob is not the once-in-a-generation superstar like Danny Manning, but a superstar nonetheless. And his supporting cast is vastly superior. Both teams were completely overlooked going into the tourney.

In '08,we had a very solid team with high expectations. Contrary to a predictions, we prevailed over a favored team in the semi-final, but we were significant underdogs to a highly talented Memphis team in the final. Coaching played a big role in the outcome, and the same coaching match-up happens on Monday night. I'm thinking Cal is less than thrilled to be matching wits with Coach Self again.

Kansas is significantly more talented than they are being given credit for. I acknowledge that Kentucky has far more pro-type talent. But their talent is young and not very experienced. Kansas is the physically stronger team. And most importantly, you just can't measure heart. Kansas has the heart of a champion; Kansas has heart out the yazoo. I've never seen a team with more.

Talent notwithstanding, this is actually a better match-up for KU than was Ohio State. This will be a more artistic type game than most in this tourney, much like the UNC game was, In a they'll-never-know-what-hit-'em final, I'll take Kansas, 82-75.

Rock Chalk!

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Ethan Berger 2 years ago

EJ once again made big shots when it matter. But Releford and TT who have struggled where so clutch. KU UK, what a match-up. Lets get Revenge!

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Chris Shaw 2 years ago

Jeff Withey has now just moved into second all-time in a Single NCAA Tournament in blocks. His 7 blocks now give him 27 total for this NCAA Tournament! Wow! With Anthony Davis still playing, he racked up 5 blocks on Saturday and now has 23 for this NCAA Tournament. Here are the all-time results! Pretty Impressive Mr. Withey!

Most Blocked Shots •29, Joakim Noah, Florida, 2006 (6 games)
-27, Jeff Withey, Kansas 2012 (5 games) •24, Loren Woods, Arizona, 2001 (6 games) -23, Anthony Davis, Kentucky, 2012 (5 games) •23, David Robinson, Navy, 1986 (4) •21, Ken Johnson, Ohio State, 1999 (5) •21, Kevin Love, UCLA, 2008 (5) •20, Tim Perry, Temple, 1988 (4)

http://www.cbssports.com/collegebasketball/ncaa-tournament/history/tournindyrec

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billy1961 2 years ago

Love it when Charles Barkley disrespects Kansas, he will do it again Monday. We Can beat Kentucky.

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HawkKlaw 2 years ago

The best part about this squad is that they win as a team. It took big contributions from everyone to get this "W".

Releford was the MVP for KU last night. 15 pts, 6 boards, a couple huge steals, a clutch 4-for-4 from the FT line, plus he played generally awesome defense the entire game (maybe the biggest reason why KU won). Elijah had a double-double and played one of the better all-round games he's played while at Kansas. He also had a couple momentum-changing buckets last night. Withey couldn't do much offensively, but defensively he got in Sullinger's head and forced him to think twice about trying to go up over the 7 footer. Ohio State couldn't get anything inside thanks to Mr. W. Tyshawn didn't play like he typically does, but he was still the catalyst on offense. And he despite having 5 turnovers, he was just one assist shy of his own double-double. He's learned to play well even when he's not playing well, if that makes any sense. TRob didn't rebound like he typically does, but he came up huge offensively. His positioning was excellent in the second half and he slaughtered OSU with that turn-around one-handed floater that he's mastered. Connor Teahen did exactly what he needed to in giving the other guards a breather and contributing solid minutes (plus that huge three pointer). *KY came in and chose to employ the strategy of "wear them down by hacking, sometimes in the face." Hey, whatever works...

If there's one negative about such an epic, hard-fought game is that we have to turn around and play an even tougher game Monday night. Rest up fellas!

We can win. We will win. This is our year. Beat Kentucky and as always, Rock Chalk Jayhawk!

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corvuscorax 2 years ago

I like our MUA's, especially Rele on Kidd-Grillkist...........

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justinryman 2 years ago

The way this Kentucky team is already deemed "Champions" by ESPN and almost every other analyst out there, it reminds me of the 2005 USC football team.

They were anointed as the best college football team every to put the pads on.

Then they played the game.

Vince Young won the 2006 Rose bowl and National Championship over the worlds best college football team ever. You know what, nobody ever talks about them after that loss. All those talking heads looked like fools after the game and didn't know what to say.

They play the games for a reason!

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justinryman 2 years ago

I am starting to believe that Coach Self plays this speech at halftime.

They learn.

They laugh.

They cry.

They don't give up, they don't ever give up.

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FLJHK 2 years ago

Every day it's great to be a Jayhawk. Today it's just a bit better than others. Tuesday will be the greatest ever.

These guys have gonads the size of basketballs. They know no fear. Sorry UK, but your team's anticipated coronation to college hoops immortality is going to run into a major Jayhawk stop. Rock Chalk!

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omng392 2 years ago

Hey Jayhawk Nation, anyone know of a good Jayhawk bar in Providence Rhode Island? Got to travel and would rather watch the game with KU fans than by myself... Either way ITS ON!!!

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railer20 2 years ago

Anyone know if they will show a replay of the KU vs OSU game in the Wichita area. I forgot to set my DVR.

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Steve Kubler 2 years ago

I have had the pleasure of watching the last two games in sports bars on the East coast. I say pleasure in that the whining was lovely!

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Dan Harris 2 years ago

Keys for the game:

  1. Shoot at least 38% from treyland while holding OSU to 30 or less(Miss !)
  2. Shoot 70% or better from the free throw line.(check !)
  3. Limit OSU offensive rebounds(check !)
  4. Stay out of foul trouble(check!)
  5. Witheys size cause problems for their bigs( 5 blocks or more) ((CHECK,FF RECORD!))
  6. EJ have a big game.(Check)
  7. Play loose and run run run them into Lake Pontchartrain(sp?)( Ill take the 2nd half)

KU 84-OSU 71(13 pt spread meant to say come back from a 13 pt deficit!!!)

Can you believe this team!! What a ride, lets get one more for the ages! RCJH!!!

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Ben Kane 2 years ago

Unbelievable, simply unbelievable.

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Billy Derringer 2 years ago

how the hell did Bill Self do it? lost 3 incoming recruites, returned only one starter who is either hit or miss some games,a bunch or role players, a couple walk ons, a few transfers from not so hot places, an with only a hunch he had one real stud who is all heart an is fearless. the pressure to keep the team eliet Bill some how has found a way to make magic an mastered a recipy to turn chicken sh!t in to chicken salad. wow cant wait to read the book! Bill you are at the top of your game.hope your land some great tutoring assidents this team was all about player devolpment and great coaching ajustments in game..

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Kit Duncan 2 years ago

Some have likened this team to the '88 team, calling it "Thomas and the Miracles." I respectfully submit they should be known as "Thomas and the Believers!"

Keep believing in yourselves gentlemen and you will be victorious Monday night! All Jayhawk Nation are now believers and soon the whole nation will believe as well.

Rock Chalk Jayhawk!

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Shawn Otrimble 2 years ago

I can't call us a Cinderella story because we are too talented, but I would compare Monday night game against Kentucky to the Terminator 2 movie. We are the Arnold T-800 taking on the new and improved T-1000 which is newer and improved. Hopefully at the end we will take their spirit and say "Hasta La Vista Baby!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Rock Chalk!!!!!!!!!!!!

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flyingfinn 2 years ago

Kentucky like Norh Carolina has all of the high school All-Americans, but there is just something about this KU team that leads me to believe we will be in it to the very end. Lets show the country again what the word TEAM means KU and go out in style!!!!!

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Joseph Kuebel 2 years ago

Wow. If u woulda told me in November that we would be on the n.c. game.... April fools, KU really just did this??? Gorgeous, this team has ball players. Releford played his role as ultimate glue guy... TRob and whitey r both beasts, and so are Ej and tyshawn. I'm prayin for a miracle on Monday. So beyond sick of hearing Kentucky this Kentucky that...

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RockCaCO3 2 years ago

Calipari's shaking in his shoes. Bill Self in the Championship game again!

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yates33333 2 years ago

Don't knock OSU, Michigan, Michigan State, Wisconsin, etal., excluding Nebraska. The Big 10 (plus 2) is a great conference academically and in sports. Most of their fans are civilized unlike Missouri and the conference that Misery is joining.

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Jayandseahawk 2 years ago

As I said to my Michigan friends who are on our side: We're Kansas. , and honestly, we didn't expect top be in this position, We didn't used to be able to "finish" games. We're too classy, with no foot on the throat at the end/ we're still classy, but with a will to win that outmatches ANYBODY. I'd hate to be the guard facing Tyshawn at the end of a game, or Elijah either. We're gonna win. I just feel it. We're Kansas -- we invented the game.

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Benjamin Piehler 2 years ago

I left Mass St. at halftime, convinced I was jinxing the game (We lost to VCU the last time I watched a hawks game at this particular establishment.)

I fall asleep like a dope, awake at 4 am to realize we've won, and I missed the party. I cant decide if this is a.) a bummer or b.) my superstitions being validated.

Regardless; Rock Chalk baby!

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DrGraydog 2 years ago

Lots of folk seem to believe that Kentucky cannt be beaten.....

I on the other hand prefer to believe that when John Calapari realized that KU would win and play Kentucky monday nite, his 1st thought was

"Oh CRAP!!! Not Bill Self and KANSAS again"

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bbeckum 2 years ago

Travis Releford has replaced Paul Pierce as my all-time favorite jayhawk. His hustle and nose for the ball. His defense, drives, steals and freethrow shooting. The way he keeps the ball moving and rarely forces anything. Seems to know his strengths and weaknesses. He looked so calm and confident on the line for those four crucial freethrows. Reminds me a lot of a scrappy kid named Rick Griggs.

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billy1961 2 years ago

Super second half energy by all. Great coaching job by HCBS. We CAN BEAT Kentucky. Take it to them Hawks and win another NC

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phogphan2000 2 years ago

If KU takes it all I will be jumping in Lake Tahoe (by the way we just got like a foot of snow today) Monday night and posting to facebook. I am humbled by these guys. I feel like half the man I thought I was. Yet I'm so thankful that they are representing for KANSAS!! UK should also be thankful they get to step on the court with such a great group of young men, they can learn something from these guys about tenacity and dedication that might just last them a lifetime.

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gardenjay 2 years ago

I loved Robinson's quote on how he doesn't like coming from behind but they seem to be good at it! What a hilareous, tough team. I'm going to miss this squad after Monday - looking forward to watching the final, Rock Chalk!

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jayhawker_97 2 years ago

shooot.. i'm really gonna miss this team!!! the coaching staff!!!!!! the hell with winning championship. i'm already thrilled how they have come so far in the end. everything is just too perfect to believe. i'm so proud of our team & the staff!!! now, let's finish where we left off. one more to go!!!! (might as well win it all.. :grind:)

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!rock chalk!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Laura Hrabak 2 years ago

Best is I know we should not beat UK part is Self knows they shouldn't beat UK,
the fans know they shouldn't beat UK,
the whole country knows KU shouldn't be able to play with Kentucky
BUT
You can't convince Tyshawn, Trob, Withey,Trel or EJ...they think their better than the 08 KU team and their not even close, but they don't know it and are too stubborn to admit it so they keep beating teams their "not supposed" to beat....
GO JAYHAWKS Stay Ignorant ROCK CHALK

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Kye Clark 2 years ago

Hey Missouricat...where ya at? Down at the ATM withdrawing all the money you lost again betting against the Jayhawks? Gotta be pretty close to homelessness now; that double-wide ain't gonna pay for itself. I'm sure you'll be here acting a-fool later, telling us how your "company" is pulling for Kensucky. Just know, win or lose, we win. We're Kansas. You're Mizery. Choke on it loser!

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bbeckum 2 years ago

cbs blew it at the end. and i've watched the replay of the withey travel call about 5 times and i'm still not sure. but it doesn't matter. as rick griggs said, bring on kentucky.

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aadhawk 2 years ago

Seems to me Withey was the hero of this game. His blocks early in the second half really gave them energy and set the tone defensively for the rest of the game.

Was Withey's traveling call at the end legit? What about Craft's free throw violation? I missed the replays (running around the house in anger and elation respectively)

And sorry to bring up a negative, but what was up with CBS camera work in the last minute?

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LAJayhawk 2 years ago

My Fellow Jayhawks,

There is only one thing left to do:

http://www.metacafe.com/watch/8306646/only_one_thing_left_to_do/

Rock Chalk.

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Chris1955 2 years ago

Simply WOW! This is begining to feel like destiny.

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packywacky88 2 years ago

The similarities to 1988 and 2008.......I think we will want it more on Monday.

Rock Chalk.

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Bangkok_Jayhawk 2 years ago

I know Kentucky is REALLY good but lets remember how many times KU has brought the best team into the tournament and came short. This is the Championship and this is a team full of winners.

Bring on the cats!

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kuhoopsfan 2 years ago

We'll be underdogs again on Monday ... perfect! Regardless of what the Wooden people think, we'll have the best player in the game. Plus, our guys are mentally and physically tough ... so I like our chances, even though the rest of the country has already awarded Kentucky the title. I believe!! Rock Chalk, Jayhawk!!

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Hank Cross 2 years ago

They've battled back again and again playing the toughest schedule I can remember KU playing. They are the stronger team emotionally and physically - and they are going to prove it on Monday night.

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Ryan Lee 2 years ago

Now finish the job you came to do and remind the nation who really represents the "K".

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litlmikeyb 2 years ago

I love you Bill Self! And I love you this team. I'm partying it up for you on Bourbon!

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