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Sunday, March 31, 2013

Young Jayhawks face rough slate in 2013-14

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One of the youngest teams in Kansas University basketball history will embark on a challenging schedule in 2013-14.

The Jayhawks will meet Duke in the third and final Champions Classic, set for Tuesday, Nov. 12, in Chicago’s United Center. Michigan State will meet Kentucky in the other game of the one-day doubleheader.

KU is 0-2 in the Classic, having lost to Kentucky in 2011 and Michigan State in ’12.

The Journal-World has learned the four schools have had talks about renewing the wildly successful Classic, presented by ESPN and State Farm Insurance.

The Jayhawks also will play in the Battle of Atlantis, set for Nov. 28-30 on Paradise Island in Nassau, Bahamas. The field consists of KU, Southern California, Villanova, Tennessee, Xavier, Wake Forest and UTEP. The eighth team is rumored to be Michigan State, though no announcement has been made.

KU has three players in the 2012-13 rotation expected to return in junior-to-be Naadir Tharpe and sophomores Perry Ellis and Jamari Traylor. Red-shirt freshman Ben McLemore is expected to turn pro.

Next season, Kansas will travel to Colorado in the completion of a home-and-home series. Georgetown and San Diego State will visit Allen Fieldhouse.

It’s also possible KU will play Arkansas in a Big 12/SEC Challenge game in Allen Fieldhouse. The two conferences have yet to officially announce formation of the challenge. Criticism of the event points to the fact four of the 14 SEC teams won’t play in the challenge since there are only 10 Big 12 teams.

The nonconference schedule is normally announced sometime in April or May, with the Big 12 portion of the slate being revealed during the summer.

Wiggins mum on choice: The country’s No. 1 recruit, Andrew Wiggins, is one of three uncommitted players to compete in Wednesday’s McDonald’s All-America game in Chicago. The others: 6-8 guard/forward Aaron Gordon of Archbishop Mitty (Calif.) High and 6-5 guard Keith Frazier of Kimball (Texas) High.

Wiggins told the Chicago Tribune on Sunday that he will announce for either KU, Kentucky, Florida State or North Carolina by May 15. He would only say he was fond of all four schools on his list.

The 6-8 forward averaged 23.4 points, 11.2 rebounds, 2.6 blocks and 2.5 assists for Huntington Prep (W.Va.), which finished 30-3. He is the son of former NBA player Mitchell Wiggins and Canadian track Olympic medalist Marity Payne-Wiggins, both graduates of Florida State.

Wiggins told the Tribune the plan is “to get bigger, stronger, faster. Just be ready for the next level.”

Better start: Michigan sophomore point guard Trey Burke on the Wolverines racing to a 13-0 lead in their 79-59 Elite Eight victory over Florida on Sunday in Dallas.

“We felt like we came out against Kansas pretty sluggish. And we felt today the key was to come out and throw the first punch,” Burke said.

The Wolverines overcame a 14-point deficit in the final minutes of a Sweet 16 overtime victory over KU.

“The game against Kansas, with us coming back and winning, I guess just after that game we were saying, ‘God has something in store for us going to the next game,’” Michigan’s Tim Hardaway Jr., said. “We were just running and gunning and having fun. That’s what we’re best at. If we continue to do that, we should go really far.”

TV talk: CBS Sports and Turner Sports’ coverage of the 2013 NCAA Tournament across TBS, CBS, TNT and truTV is averaging 9.4 million total viewers to date, up 9 percent from last year’s 8.6 million viewers, and is tied with 1994 as the highest average for the NCAA Tournament through the Saturday Regional Finals in 19 years (10.7 million, 1993).

CBS made the announcement Sunday.

The 2013 NCAA Tournament to date is averaging a national HH rating/share of 6.1/13, up 9 percent from last year’s 5.6/12, and is tied with 2005 as the highest-to-date rating in 15 years (6.3/15; 1998).

Saturday’s Regional Final coverage on CBS averaged 9.4 million viewers, based on Nielsen Fast Nationals, up 6 percent from last year’s 8.9 million viewers.

Regional Final coverage on Saturday earned a HH rating/share of a 5.8/12, up 4 percent from last year’s 5.6/12.

Comments

741hawk 2 years, 4 months ago

FOR YOUR CONSIDERATION:

I think the world of HC Bill Self. I think he is one of the best in the business. We are blessed to have him at the University of Kansas.

That being said, no one is above review, especially someone in the public eye like Bill. Here’s what I’ve been thinking about today. (Because I can't get the loss off my mind!)

I’ve always been impressed by Bill’s coaching staff. With the exception of Coach Townsend, I believe all have been head coaches. Hinson was replaced with Doc Sadler, etc. Each of the assistants are invaluable in scouting opponents and giving our guys an edge.

I’ve also noticed that many D-1 coaches sit at the far end of the bench, closest to center-court. Bill sits between Townsend and Dooley, as though he wants their input throughout the game. However, thinking back on it, I recall little in-game conversation with Self. Dooley, for example, seems to just take notes . . . like Danny used to do.

However, in the aftermath of the “meltdown,” I began to think about Bill’s use of his coaches within “the game.”

I’ve always admired head coaches who, during a timeout, spend a portion of the timeout talking among their coaches before addressing the team. (Four or five heads are usually better than one!) The “meltdown” made me think about how Bill does (or does not) use his assistants. When a timeout is called, the players head directly to Bill Self. The bench players . . . and the assistants . . . huddle around. I don’t see Bill talking very often to his assistants.

Is it possible that during a game, Bill puts himself in charge in such a way that his assistants are too intimidated to suggest or contribute? The 10-second violation, for example. Any of the bench coaches could have called timeout. The utilization of Elijah, for example. Is it even possible, that at halftime or during the last five minutes of the game, the assistants knew better than to suggest a different role for Elijah? Interesting to think about because the assistants either 1) agreed to go down in flames with Bill’s reliance on Elijah or 2) they were too intimidated to speak up.

No malice. Nothing unkind here. Heck, I may be completely off-base. Maybe Bill coaches best without "distractions." (I just can’t get over the way we lost.)

Steve Zimmerman 2 years, 4 months ago

I have a question: If a team's that good, well-coached, if the coach prep them up for each situation, regardless of whom they play, would you still need to scout the opponents? For example, a team like Louisville, where their PGs can score at will, pass to teammates who are always there to finish - do you need to worry about your opponent? They don't have position rank #1, 2, 3 recruits off of high-school, but that's just an example - a great example of well-discipline coaching.

Benz Junque 2 years, 4 months ago

What are you talkign about? Peyton Siva was the #25 ranked overall recruit in the ESPN Class of '09 and was one of the top PG recruits in his class.

okiedave 2 years, 4 months ago

741Hawk, I think it is a reasonable obseration. Not to say more input will have changed the outcome of the game, however, there is room for improvement in the best of coaches and I think HCBS would be wise to at least consider your input.

Mike Bratisax 2 years, 4 months ago

I think it will be a long time before we find another trio of guards who were willing to share the ball, play defense just as hard as offense and who seemed to know what his teammates were doing at all times.

I feel bad for EJ because he really did give his best for 4 years at Kansas and will mostly be remembered for the collapse against Michigan. It's not fair but sometimes life doesn't take "fair" into account. I hope he can move on and find success and have a good life. That is when his strength of character will count the most. I think EJ had plenty of strength.

Swamphawk 2 years, 4 months ago

Not that I see a problem in how he coaches, but your comment made me think about the situation and logistics of the game in Dallas. Could the configuration have led to the assistants not being able to make suggestions as easily as they normally would on a situation like the 10-second call? If I recall correctly, they were relegated to those chairs below court level while Self was all alone on the court. Seems like it might cause a disconnect that isn't usually there.

Mike Bratisax 2 years, 4 months ago

I just see it as a question of style. During the game, you don't get the opportunity to see what is happening between the head coach and his assistant coaches (unless you are at the game).

This is purely conjecture but if I was HCBS, I would want my assistant coaches making observations and having it the moment a timeout is called. I would rather my players heading directly to me with everyone paying attention to what I am saying.

As I said, purely conjecture w/no coaching experience but I would think both methods could be equally successful but during that short period of time, I wouldn't want any distractions or possible mixed messages getting into the players heads.

Steve Brown 2 years, 3 months ago

which coach is counting 10 seconds to call time out? He messed up.

CPAHawk 2 years, 4 months ago

"Heck, I may be completely off-base". What was your first clue?

actorman 2 years, 4 months ago

CPA, that's an incredibly snarky response which adds nothing to the conversation.

jayhawkinnc 2 years, 4 months ago

I'm just still baffled as to how Self could keep EJ in the game vs. Michigan. Why didn't he just bench him when it was obvious EJ was having an awful game? I mean, he benched McClemore vs. UNC when he wasn't playing well, why not bench EJ? And why not draw up a play at the end of OT for your best player on the team (and projected #1 player in the draft), and let him make a play? Very, very frustrating. I love coach Self to death and I'm one of his biggest fans. He's a great coach, but not the greatest tournament coach over the years in my opinion.

KJD 2 years, 4 months ago

My guess, from listening to Self, is that he is in it to win championships. He certainly knows how to win Big XII championships and I've loved it every year he's pulled that Jayhawk out of the hat.

To win a National Championship this year you certainly would not want EJ to be a head case moving forward. You would want confidence. Confidence folks, real confidence. You keep playing EJ to recapture the confidence in your point guard to win a championship. If you don't know how to dance with who you picked to dance with then don't go dancing. When you recruit someone to be their teacher then don't hate them at the highest point of your relationship, help them succeed by letting them try to succeed in their own way.

As a head coach in college basketball you are coaching young men, very young men, who are in the process of becoming men. Bill Self provides his young men who give it up for the program to succeed. We love them for it. They do so good year in and year out for us. And we love them back.

Dick Williams 2 years, 4 months ago

Well put, and absolutely correct. We all want a scape goat and EJ is an easy pick as Self is also but KJD must be like myself and remembers having his jaw to the floor over EJ in last year's tournament when he played 'lights out' and without him we would have never made the final game. They are kids for goodness sakes. Stuff happens.

VaJay 2 years, 4 months ago

KJD - Coach had no qualms about putting BMac on the bench for an extended amount of time over the course of two games, and he's a freshman - so imagine how much doubt can creep into that kid's mind.

What I think is the issue (if any) is Coach tends to be very loyal to his seniors who have paid their dues & is loath to bench them for any extended time barring foul trouble.

And to Jinnc - even with that chink in his armor, I'll take Coach Self over anyone - regular season, tournament time, whenever.

Mike Bratisax 2 years, 4 months ago

ralster; "All we can do is 2nd guess Self on the last 3min of regulation."

37 min. of great coaching and then the most mind boggling 3 min. in KU history. I still don't know what happened. From the thrill of victory to one of the worst endings of a Kansas season (and we all know Kansas has had more than its share of bad endings). Stunningly bad decisions, missed free throws, layups and wasted timeouts. Who gets the most blame? Self? EJ? Entire team? Karma? Justin Bieber? Justin Bieber's monkey?

I'll probably need a few hours in some shrinks chair between now and next season.

KJD 2 years, 4 months ago

EJ did sit on the bench for most of the first half. EJ would have had the freshest legs coming down the stretch.

ahpersecoachingexperience 2 years, 4 months ago

TV ratings are up bc we couldn't stop looking at the train wreck that was dudes leg yesterday. OUCH!

coloradojayhawk 2 years, 4 months ago

I'm wondering what affect that might have on the team as they prepare for the next game against Wichita State. Will his "win one for the Gipper" attitude help them onward in the same way Roderick Stewart helped KU? Or will they, upon reflection for several days, fail to come together and suffer without one of their key players? I'm hoping it's the latter, as I'd love to see Wichita State in the finals.

Mike Bratisax 2 years, 4 months ago

I look back at what happened in 2008 to Rodrick Stewart. I think it will bring the team together.

rockchalkchalkin23 2 years, 4 months ago

If you want a clear example of player development by bill self, look at his son. No disrespect to Tyler. Attitude reflects leadership.

Hopefully it will be the "right time" to go home to Okie St after Tyler graduates.

Ethan Berger 2 years, 4 months ago

I'm confused on what you implying.

are you saying that you want Bill Self gone because Tyler isn't a star player?

Adam Tyler 2 years, 4 months ago

Its the right time for you to go home fool. Bill Self has put together 10 great seasons at Kansas and if you can't see that you are extremely unnapreciative of dominance and will never be pleased.

mojayhawk 2 years, 4 months ago

rockchalkin... Are you that blind to what we have in Coach Self? You have absolutely got to be kidding me. Wake up. We could never have a better coach. I am appreciating every year, every game with HCBS at the helm. I wouldn't trade him for anyone.
Also, I love Tyler's attitude. His attitude does reflect leadership, and he has as good a chance as any of developing into a productive player. We lost a game to a good team. Give it a rest.

PhearThePhog 2 years, 4 months ago

"No disrespect to" rockchalkin but hopefully now is the right time for you to get your head examined. What on earth does Tyler's player development/attitude have to do with Bill's remarkable performance as the HC of the Jayhawks?

John Beck 2 years, 4 months ago

  1. April fools......right? Or have you taken leave of logic, reason and reality. Coach Self somewhere else in the Big 12? GTFO

cklarock 2 years, 4 months ago

No coach is perfect, every coach has weaknesses, and every coach gets beat sometimes. Part of winning is taking calculated risks -- sometimes they backfire. I agree that it is a bit of an article of faith for Coach Self to put his trust in his upperclassmen during tight situations, and that we might have had better luck with a different lineup late in regulation.

But time for him to go home? Dude. We're living in the Golden Era of KU hoops. We currently have a coach who just delivered four 30-win seasons in a row, and if you think he's a bum, or that 30-win seasons happen by accident, I don't know what to tell you.

kdub823 2 years, 4 months ago

Everyone is entitled (although not qualified) to second guess decisions HCBS made but this is a low blow. Not only has Bill shown an exceptional ability to develop players, but his son works very hard day in and day out even knowing he likely won't play much. The educated fan base at KU understands this which is why you hear so much support for this hard work when Tyler gets into a game. Shame on you for taking a jab at a kid simply because it gives you the opportunity to draw a cute parallel. Just because you add the "no disrespect" disclaimer doesn't make your comment less disrespectful. As an example, no offense rockchalkchalkin but you don't know what you're talking about and should leave the commentary to people with more knowledge and class.

texashawk10 2 years, 4 months ago

I sincerely hope this is an April fool's joke because I don't even want to imagine how Bill Self would dominate the Big 12 with T. Boone's resources.

SaltLakeHawk 2 years, 4 months ago

"Fantastic comment, rockchalkchalkin... we should bring in Frank Haith," said nobody, ever.

AZHawk72 2 years, 4 months ago

I didn't think you were off-base, 741, but I did think the handling of Johnson's behavior was. And, no, I'm not just referring to the cheap shot, the three fouls in three minutes, or the sad reality of getting a flagrant in the first two minutes of a critical game, which I've never witnessed in over fifty years of watching college basketball.

When a player is clearly out-of-control from the get-go, get him out and don't give a second thought to any concerns about the "entitlement generation," just rip him for what he's done to his teammates, sit his -ss down and don't just let him sit and seethe and think that's sending a message.

If, as an assistant, a coach doesn't feel comfortable bringing a young man back to reality, then it's time to update the resume. If you can't stand the image in the mirror, you can't do anything for anyone else.

dylans 2 years, 4 months ago

In Bill's defense the refs told him it was unintentional.

nuleafjhawk 2 years, 4 months ago

Wouldn't the term "Flagrant 1" imply that it was intentional ?

dylans 2 years, 4 months ago

Flagrant 2

Flagrant 1's are issued for excessive contact not necessarily intentional.

If the refs thought EJ hit McGary with malicious intent he would have been tossed.

Also implied or not it was written in one of the articles on this site that the referee told Bill outright that the foul looked unintentional. But the way things went if EJ had been tossed KU is in the final four right now.

Mike Bratisax 2 years, 4 months ago

Then the refs don't understand the rule:

NCAA (college) and NFHS (U.S. high school) rules define a flagrant foul as a personal or technical foul that is extreme or severe. A flagrant personal foul (or intentional foul) involves excessive or severe contact during a live ball. A flagrant technical foul involves unsportsmanlike conduct that is extreme in nature, or excessive or severe contact during a dead ball.. immediate ejection of the offending player.

Both Flagrant One and Two are by definition INTENTIONAL.

KJD 2 years, 4 months ago

Bedore has followed Kansas Men's basketball for thousands of days straight. If he runs a headline that we face a rough slate then I do wonder how he compares it to other slates in the past. I really do wonder what his opinion is on the entire slate, not just these early games. What does it look like for our talented, though young, roster next year.

"KU, Southern California, Villanova, Tennessee, Xavier, Wake Forest and UTEP" with what we return and have coming in seems like a lot of early season fun for KU fans. We don't play all of those teams, we only play 3 of them along with a mystery guest. If it is Michigan State we know Nix is gone and they return everyone else. If I was the Atlantis folks, after looking at this field, I would be sure to put Izzo and the Spartans on the other side of the field from Kansas.

Duke will be fun for sure since it will be two names playing an ugly game–ah memories of Hawaii just two seasons ago. Duke will lose Plumlee, Curry, and Kelly who are three of their starters. Quinn Cook will have experience for the Blue Devils though Naadir Tharpe will have plenty to share too. Even though Rasheed Sulaimon will return with experience so will Perry Ellis at a different position.

November games will be fun next year and we should have as good of a chance to win them as anybody else. I'm much more interested in the look of the December schedule, where we play, and who we play when.

2013-2014 Jayhawks remind me of the 2005-2006 Jayhawks. Wayne Selden, Joel Embiid, Brannen Greene, Conner Frankamp already have me waiting for the next Self and Co installment of KU basketball. I'm real excited about seeing Selden in a Kansas uniform along with Embiid though the whole class looks good. They will be young, talented and they should not have a whole lot on their shoulders in the way of expectations. Seriously KU fans, watch them win and grow like we always do with pain and you will love it along the way. I saw a Frank Mason video recently and it looks like he's got chops to dribble, drive and pull-up to make the three so don't bury him on the rotation yet you 'no-rank frank' posters :-) .

Traylor and Andrew White III will now have their time to shine. Rio Adams, yes I'm calling you Rio here at KUSports.com, will have a chance to live up to that name if you choose to grow up and be a team player. Landen Lucas will be ready to play (period)

Adam Tyler 2 years, 4 months ago

If Lucas comes to play from day one, I don't have many worries for this team going forward. We have open scholarships and a majority, if not all, will be filled. Hopefully one of those players can be an unexpected contributor. Self has had some real good luck with late signings like BRush and McLemore, but also brought to town and stretched on guys like Merv Lindsay strictly for depth. I hope we find that late signee who can be an impact immediately, but I am not counting on it with an already loaded class.

If we can get solid production from Ellis and Lucas it will allow Traylor and Embiid to play free and protect the rim with intensity.

KJD 2 years, 4 months ago

I like the idea of Traylor playing free with intensity. I saw him do that in the Sweet 16 game. He's ready for this next team. I'm looking forward to all of his minutes next year.

tdscpa 2 years, 4 months ago

This year, Traylor averaged 9.6 minutes and 1.5 fouls per game. (.15625 fouls/minute, taking 32 minutes to attain 5 fouls.) If the coach sits him after two 1st. half fouls, he could play 12.8 minutes. 32-12.8 minutes leaves 19.2 minutes to play in the second half!

Enjoy watching him foul out every game next year.

gchawk 2 years, 4 months ago

My thoughts exactly. I think this will fall under the category of "deja vu all over again".

Ethan Berger 2 years, 4 months ago

First I'm going to plug for ESPN real quick. If you haven't watched survive and advance, the 30 for 30 episode, please go do so. Excellent piece.

But the reason I bring it up is because of how good the college talent was. NC States run was incredible because basketball had never been better. UNC had a crazy good team who lost to Georgia. Virginia had one of the best post players in college ball history. Houston had two players who were starts in the NBA. All of them went to college for multiple years. Now maybe some can inform on the rule back then, but we can look and say how college develops and betters them as pros. (If you haven't caught on, im about to rant about the one and done).

Now the counter argument would be the 70s and 90s. Same rules, same scenario. College ball was excellent (for UCLA in the 70s) but the NBA was lackluster. I think the NCAA and NBA need to team up and find a balance. The talent level today is as high as its ever been. Mostly due to strength and conditioning. However, all these really good raw players are jumping far to early. So lets get a committee to be in charge of saying who can jump. After every year, they can review and ask to jump again. But the one thing we don't need anymore is average college players jumping pro. We have a great class next year but my fear is Selden being an 1and done and not being ready. B Mac this year is a top 5 pick but mentally and ball handling is not ready for the nba. Julian Wright, X Henry, Josh Selby. All guys who played for us who jumped to early. If we could get a logical rule, not only will college ball improve, but so would fan/team relations.

Jeffery Barrett 2 years, 4 months ago

Great stuff, Hawk90. My sentiments exactly.

actorman 2 years, 4 months ago

Excellent idea about having a committee to say who's ready for the NBA. It would be nice if it could be made up of people who did not have direct connections to the current NBA but had experience and were trustworthy.

That would make things so much better than the current system.

I don't know if it's feasible or who you would even write to, but you should definitely send a letter to someone in charge and make the suggestion.

Suzi Marshall 2 years, 4 months ago

Trying to understand how some of these HS kids pick a school is mind numbing. How does Marcus Smart choose OSU over KU? Can you imagine this team with Smart at the Point! Wiggins....has an unbelievable opportunity to shine with a KU as his choice.

BMac has great potential but the NBA will eat him alive with the state of his current game. That league will eat him alive with his current ball handling skills.

coloradojayhawk 2 years, 4 months ago

Don't forget the other part of the equation - the classroom education. Maybe there's a major that's more interesting to the player at OSU than at KU. KU doesn't have every major, and some are better than others. We've lost kids to Duke and North Carolina not because of coaches, but also because of what their education might give them. I realize that's not high on the list for a one and done, but I'd venture it's at least part of the equation.

texashawk10 2 years, 4 months ago

Marcus Smart wanted to play with Phil Forte and KU never offered Forte. I guarantee if Bill Self had taken Forte, he has Smart as well. Don't mean to pile on here either, but KU was also the runner up for Otto Porter. KU possibly wins the title last year with Porter out there and this year KU could have had a starting lineup or Withey, Porter, McLemore, Smart, and take your pick between Releford or Johnson. That's a lineup on par with Kentucky's 2012 lineup.

Suzi Marshall 2 years, 4 months ago

Self made the offer to Forte. It was late, but he for sure made the offer. I do recall Porter but last year my hope was to land Smart.

Matt Kenton 2 years, 4 months ago

I don't think I have ever been more excited about a recruit than I am with Wayne Selden!

Adam Tyler 2 years, 4 months ago

Anyone implying bill self be under review or fired is simply ignorant.

nuleafjhawk 2 years, 4 months ago

Anyone implying Bill Self be under review or fired is Bruce Weber.

texashawk10 2 years, 4 months ago

Under review for job safety, agreed that it's ignorant. Under review so he can grow as a coach and learn from mistakes he made during the Michigan game, 100% in favor of.

trustyourSelf 2 years, 4 months ago

I know every else is against me on this, but I don't really want Wiggins. I don't really like OAD's in general. (Yes I love Xavier and I don't really consider McLemore an OAD because of his RS season) Just sort of has that Kentucky flavor to it. When he says his plan for college is to "just be ready for the next level" it's like he's already ready to be done with college now. I know that our team would be greatly improved next year if we had him, but I prefer watching guys develop and stick around for 3 or 4 years. I'm interested to see if there is one other person in our fan base that feels the same way as me.

Adam Tyler 2 years, 4 months ago

I understand what you are saying, I really do. But I will always take more talent. It takes a little bit of talent to win consistently.

Random scenario (I understand it's a stretch but just hear me): We get Wiggins or any other one and done hyped high schooler. He lives up to his hype in school, gets drafted, and becomes an NBA Hall of Famer.

Do you want him representing the University of Kansas? I do.

BringBackMark 2 years, 4 months ago

Keep in mind that the University of Kansas is more than basketball. Chances are if he's one-and-done he doesn't even attend class second semester. No, I really don't want, or consider that, representing the University of Kansas.

Adam Tyler 2 years, 4 months ago

Assuming all one and dones do not attend class is flawed logic. You have no clue. They must remain eligible for the duration of the year.

The end goal of college is to become skilled in a particular field and start your career.

Some kids need one year (the NBAs fault), some kids need four. But to say all one and doners fail to represent the university is absurd.

coloradojayhawk 2 years, 4 months ago

Remember, even the year Selby and the Morrii were finished with their eligibility, they kept fulfilling the requirements for their classes. I'm not sure how they did it - probably through tutors and tests and I'm thinking there must be lots of things different for today's student-athletes than there were in the days when I had to be in class, but they didn't hurt KU's academic standing though they were partying in LA and Vegas.

BringBackMark 2 years, 4 months ago

I absolutely agree. Give me more Releford's, Withey's, etc. Once you had a machine set up with 4 year, coachable, hard working, players it would be unstoppable. Especially with Bill Self's ability to develop talent. Sounds like all Wiggins is thinking about is the NBA already.

“We felt like we came out against Kansas pretty sluggish. And we felt today the key was to come out and throw the first punch,” Burke said......See, EJ knew what he was doing!

jhox 2 years, 4 months ago

Sorry but I don't understand what you're saying. Some people think Wiggins may be the best high school player sine LeBron. How can you seriously question having a kid like that for one year? I could understand not wanting to turn over much of the roster every year, like Kentucky, but you need to sprinkle in a talented freshmen or two to win championships these days. What if Trey Burke had been in a KU uniform on Friday night? Would you not have liked having him? What about Anthony Davis last year? Might we have that championship trophy instead of being runner up? What if we had landed Kevin Durante or Blake Griffin? We've not had that truly elite Freshman since probably Danny Manning. As good as Ben was this year he didn't have the personality yet to take a team on his shoulders, game in, game out. Those players are out there, we've just been coming up short recruiting them, but there are game changers out there and sooner or later we'll find one.

You need to wake up to reality.

trustyourSelf 2 years, 4 months ago

Wow- I didn't realize I wasn't in reality. I see your side of the argument. Better players= better play. But it just seems like by the way he's quoted that he just has to do his time in college (prison parallel) so he can move on to the NBA. Sort of the way I looked at middle school

Benz Junque 2 years, 4 months ago

So you wwould rather this year's team DIDN'T have Ben McLemore on it? Would we have accomplished as much without him? Doubtful...

trustyourSelf 2 years, 4 months ago

I see McLemore as a different case. He was on the bench for every game last year supporting the team. Also, he's not nearly as self-centered as Wiggins seems to be

Benz Junque 2 years, 4 months ago

Based on what? I have barely read so much as one comment from the kid?

Margaret Schadler 2 years, 4 months ago

Has it occurred to anyone that one and done works for those already in the pros? If it takes longer to develop if a talented player ones and dones than if he stays in college, then those already in the Pros have less competition than if there was a three or four year rule.

My understanding is that the players' union is a big advocate of one and done.

jhox 2 years, 4 months ago

The pros got tired of drafting kids out of high school who went bust. By requiring them to wait a year they get to see what they're capable of against bigger, stronger college competition. It's a bad rule for the college game but the NCAA really has no say in the matter.

Jack Wilson 2 years, 4 months ago

You know what, I'd support that. Just don't recruit one and dones. Forget it. If they develop into a one and done, then that's different. But presumptive OADs? No need.

Michael Luby 2 years, 4 months ago

Wiggins will follow mommy and daddy to Florida State. He wants to be The Man on a team and he couldn't do it on any of his other choices. We could use that Gordon kid though.

jhox 2 years, 4 months ago

He would be the man at KU. We're going to be very young and could definitely use his offensive skills. He would be THE star in Lawrence next year. Kentucky is the one place where he probably wouldn't star with too many egos and only one ball to go around. KU could use him as a point-forward. He would be a great fit. But I agree he's likely to end up at FSU.

Michael Luby 2 years, 4 months ago

Jhox, talent wise, yes I agree with you. But, how Bill coaches his teams, Wiggins would be part of the whole. He wouldn't treat Wiggins as a star. He would beat him down in boot camp, then build him up to be greater than he could be anywhere else.

Benz Junque 2 years, 4 months ago

And where have you read ANYTHING that makes it sound like Wiggins only wants to go where he will treated like a star? Or are you just A$$uming this he how he expects to be treated?

jhox 2 years, 4 months ago

I agree Lulufulu, Self would develop him better than other coaches would. But a player of that level of talent would start from day one and play 35 minutes a game even at KU. He's an entirely other level of player than anyone we've been landing, including Ben and Xavier.

Self is negatively recruited against by Calipari because he has a reputation for not playing Freshmen, but he's not getting the same level of freshmen that Calipari is getting. Archie Goodwin, Nerlins Noel, Anthony Davis. Those would all be 35 minute guys at KU or anywhere else.

Dirk Medema 2 years, 4 months ago

Wiggins wants to get bigger, stronger, faster - And was quoted after his visit as saying that he thought being hudy-ized would be great!

April13 2 years, 4 months ago

Why on earth would it take a kid until May 15 to choose a school at which he intends to play one year? These drama queens need to get over themselves and get over themselves quickly.

akgjenkintown 2 years, 4 months ago

Most of the time highly ranked players wait to decide until they see who is declaring for the NBA or who is transferring to opening up slots. For example UK has to clear their roster to make room for their new recruits, i.e., their NBA development squad. They started yesterday when Ryan Harrow who indicated after their NIH lost that he was returning, two weeks later "elected" to transfer, yet again. This time to Georgia State to be "closer to family". UK needs to release 4 or 5 players more since their purported one and done players elected to come back. Players of Wiggins caliber wait until the rosters are set and they can see where they best fit after the dust settles.

741hawk 2 years, 4 months ago

I think it is grossly unfair to "student" athletes that they make a commitment to a school, but the school's commitment is only a one-year renewable scholarship. Oh well, so much for the NCAA's looking out for the student athlete. NOT!

And . . . that's why Coach Sleeze has no limit on scholarships. He's perfectly happy to recruit all he wants and release those he no longer has room for.

Benz Junque 2 years, 4 months ago

Why? Because it is more convenient to you? The kid wants to make sure he is fully comfortable with his decision. Take all the time you need, Wiggins.

Andy Tweedy 2 years, 4 months ago

I used to think it was stupid that a kid wait until late in his senior year before picking a college. But then I one day I remembered that until April of my senior year, I wasn't going to Kansas, I was headed somewhere else. I wonder how many of the posters who think kids should pick Kansas in the fall are actually from Kansas. No matter what kind of kid you are, it can be tough to leave home and go to a place where you don't know anybody. Good things come to those who wait!!!

Mike Barnhart 2 years, 4 months ago

KU whopped Michigan for 36 minutes on Friday night. If we could have held on and snuck by Michigan, now knowing what they did to Florida yesterday, does anyone doubt we'd be heading to Atlanta next weekend?

akgjenkintown 2 years, 4 months ago

I was never worried about Florida after they lost to KSU by 20+. Once Georgetown got knockout, I was confident that they could advance if EJ could just play decent. However...

Kevin Jenkins 2 years, 4 months ago

I think we have a great bunch of players for next year. We have a great coach. Who in there right mind would want Self in OSU? Think if we ended up with Webber? Wow, what a nightmare that would be. Self can teach! Who else could win so many Big 12 titles? You are crazy chalk23. We have so much talent now and only Self can bring them together for greatness. We will be fine. The better teams we play in November, will make us ready for another NCAA tourney. RockChalk. KU fan for life. Wins and losses.

texashawk10 2 years, 4 months ago

Agreed, if Bill Self were at OSU, I can only imagine what he could do with T. Boone's money. Not implying cheating, but T. Boone's money can upgrade facilities and other legal perks that KU can't match right now.

Dirk Medema 2 years, 4 months ago

Coach Self has all the resources he needs at KU, and more. It would take OSU another century and several T-Bones to catch-up. Coach and Cindy know they have it real good right where they are for as long as they want to play the game.

Yonatan Negash 2 years, 4 months ago

I have a feeling Andrew Wiggins is going to shock the world with his choice. First, I don't believe the guy would ends up at Kentucky. Not so sure about NC and Florida State either. I have a feeling we'll get him.

Robert Brock 2 years, 4 months ago

KU's chances: about a 3 percent chance.

741hawk 2 years, 4 months ago

But even if it's one in a million, "We've still got a chance!"

AirCapJay 2 years, 4 months ago

Maybe he wants to play with his brother? At Wichita State. That really would be a Shocker!

Kevin Jenkins 2 years, 4 months ago

Really Mac should stay one more year. He could improve his game so much and not be like so many early entries. Who now are out of the NBA and looking for a job. Yes we understand his situation. He could help his family, but if waited, he could be a star player.

nuleafjhawk 2 years, 4 months ago

I'll check with the NCAA and see if we can all chip in to help out his family while he stays here.

We could have bake sales and cheerleader car washes, stuff like that !!

Go team, go!

KemDooKU 2 years, 4 months ago

You know that sick feeling you get when your team loses a Heartbreaker - well it's still there!

nuleafjhawk 2 years, 4 months ago

I still have that feeling from BUCKNELL............

actorman 2 years, 4 months ago

.. Arizona ... Syracuse ... etc., etc. Hell, I'm still bothered by the loss to WSU in '81!

KemDooKU 2 years, 4 months ago

Plenty of room on this team for Wiggins to be the man - plus he can come hear and be the giant killer which will be the Kentucky Wildcats next year! Man they are loaded

JayHawkFanToo 2 years, 4 months ago

Giant killer? Isn't UK supposed to be "the" giant? Is he going to kill his own team? I guess with all those egos it is feasible.

akgjenkintown 2 years, 4 months ago

Next year could be the truly first down year for Self at KU if the returning players don't improve monumentally between now and the beginning of next season. I wouldn't be surprised if KU's season doesn't mirror that of UNC (young and over rated at the beginning of the season and demonstrated they were only a second tier team in a weak ACC), but hopefully not UK (overhyped and never lived up to their potential). Lack of senior/junior leadership will be a problem. Most of the truly successful teams for Self have had some players with experience in the starting lineup and next year's team will have little (Tharpe-Junior, Ellis and Traylor-Sophomores). Missing out on a number of recruits over the past few years will come back to bit KU in the short term. How do you go into a season with no Seniors (no offense intented to Wesley and Roberts) and one Junior' Tharpe (no offense to Garrett)? The 2013-2014 season will be a result of poor recruiting in previous years. Young and talented, but inexperienced is the outlook for next year.

dylans 2 years, 4 months ago

I look for KU to secure between a 2 and a 4 seed for next season's tournament. The 10th big 12 title in 10 years will be very tough, but doable.

AsadZ 2 years, 4 months ago

Gary Bedore,

It was my understanding that KU had a home/away series with Temple. Temple was at AFH last year so I was expecting KU to play at Temple next year. However it is not mentioned in the article.

Can you clarify.

Thank You.

KemDooKU 2 years, 4 months ago

This year we were light on guard play - next year it's the opposite - light in the paint and the only big we have coming in has only played two years of basketball ........- with all that being said go ahead and chalk us up for another Big 12 championship and a three seed in the dance.

shinguard 2 years, 4 months ago

After watching this video, I have given up all hope on Wiggins. Lots "we"s in his answers when talking about Kentucky's incoming freshman class. I hope I eat my words. What do you all think? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5PE44a...

Jeffery Barrett 2 years, 4 months ago

That's crazy! No one uses all those "we's" unless he's going there! It's over. He's going to uk.

eastcoasthawk 2 years, 4 months ago

Yep. Just waiting for the roster spot to open up.

JayhawkRock78 2 years, 4 months ago

Thanks for the clip. He sure believes UK has the best 5 or 6 and if he joins them they win it all. Too bad, but it sure looks like he's going to UK.

yates33333 2 years, 4 months ago

I hope Michigan wins the national championship, but Trey Burke's comments break my balls. KU gave them the game. Sure he is a great player and made an outstanding shot to tie the game and send it to overtime, but he should never have had that opportunity. Robinson may be right concerning God.

Can't someone get McLemore's mother a cushy job in Lawrence and rent her a nice home cheaply? I know this sort of thing has worked since I played in the 1950s. I can't see how this would be against any crappy NCAA rules.

REHawk 2 years, 4 months ago

I am of the disposition that league titles represent the meat and potatos of a sportseason. Anything beyond,in the postseason, is always someting of a crapshoot. NCAA Tourney wins are gravy. Some posters are calling for a review of Bill Self. Heck, Bill Self is always on review, 365 days per annum. That comes with the 3.8 million dollar territory. Personally, I cherish those 9 consecutive conference trophies. In my estimation, no other coaching and training staff in America could have posted such a series of heralded championships, even at the throne of the nation's historically best program and fan base. That said, I grade Bill Self at "A" level again this season, but for 3 areas of concern: his psychological slip in sending his troops to TCU with their heads hanging, his freezing up in the final ten minutes of the Michigan game, and his persistent shortcomings in reluctant development of bench talent. In the grand scheme of 30 Wins Jayhawk Basketball, what other head coach is going to post so many significant victories while keeping his own act and the program so clean? We've got the right guy in place to lead this program for as long as he chooses to do so, hands down. I am already excited for the 2013-14 season. Rock Chalk!

jaybate 2 years, 4 months ago

The minute UK and Ryan Harrow announced yesterday that Harrow would be transferring to Georgia State, the odds of Wiggins selecting UK spiked as high as they can go without becoming certainties.

Alex Peekeaton 2 years, 4 months ago

Nope - Harrow scholarship will be to add point guard Dominique Hawkins. Noel leaving for NBA will be the scholarship given to Wiggins who is coming to UK.

AsadZ 2 years, 4 months ago

BBall, What is reaction of KY fans on last season's performance? With all that talent, after the NC year, with such a pathetic season, I was wondering if Calapari's job is in trouble. What is the word in KY nation?

bradynsdad 2 years, 4 months ago

I think this whole UK greatest recruiting class ever storyline is a little overrated. They had the best recruiting class last year with the number 1 overall recruit and look how it turned out. How many people were eager to jump on the UK will repeat bandwagon? Even before Noel went down they were in danger of even making the tourney. Cal proved this year that too many egos can be a bad thing. Think about his first year when he had Wall and Cousins, that team was so loaded that first round draft pick Ortin was coming off the bench and they didn't make it past the Elite Eight. Regardless of how many people say it Kentucky did not win the title last year with all freshman. No matter how heralded the recruiting class is if they don't cut down the nets in April then just like everyone else they go home. It's easy for the kids to get caught up in the hype themselves but just wait til two or three months into the season when one or two of these all stars aren't getting the playing time they were promised or thought that they deserved. I will never trade a class full of one and dones over kids who pour everything they have into our beloved university. On a seperate note did anyone get the full story as to why World Wide Wes was not allowed VIP access into Lucas Oil Stadium?

monkeehawkSL8 2 years, 4 months ago

I agree about the OAD'S. With the way Cal has allowed the program to become so open to the public, espn's "all access kentucky", rap stars, nba players etc. What is going on is so far from student athletic's its like a Vegas club show. This will not last. It's poison and it will fall apart. In a way UK are like the Yankee's, who have a payroll larger than economies of many small countries. Yet they still don't win every year. If they have another year like this year it won't be cool to go play for Cal, it'll be embarrassing. Student athletic's will prevail.

bradynsdad 2 years, 4 months ago

One other quick thing to think about. Cal will be under tremendous pressure to win it all next year. I don't mean the normal pressure either. Think about his selling points to recruits? If they don't win it then he what will be the excuse? What will every analyst or fan say? Cal brought in the greatest recruiting class of all time with first round draft picks coming off the bench and he still couldn't win a title? Just food for thought.

monkeehawkSL8 2 years, 4 months ago

Forgive me, I wrote before I read your next post. You said it far better.

JD Roth 2 years, 4 months ago

I agree, 30 wins a year is awesome, but when you follow blindly and NEVER question anything about any situation, then you are asking for trouble. Self makes the BIG money, there should be no confusion about what to run regarding the last possession. When you are a senior you don't commit the turnovers EJ committed late in the game and finally when you are zeroing in on the rim with a two point deficit you lay it in, you don't take yourself out of a shot and then kick it out to put Naadir in a difficult spot. The three other seniors worked too hard to surrender a lead and game in that fashion. It should never have happened and was preventable. Credit Burke with big time plays, but in reality, it should have never come down to that, ever!

James Clark 2 years, 4 months ago

I think Bill is a type of coach that rewords hard practice and many years of dedication to the team and school. Remember we are talking about kids who need an life lessons and need a good man to fallow as in coach and men in there life. I take Self any day to coach my kids. Remember Connor Tiehan he started in his senior year and that won't happen at other Big time Basketball Schools.

NJHAWK 2 years, 4 months ago

Fantastic post. slayr. I completely agree. Example: Michigan's freshman Mitch McGary.

AsadZ 2 years, 4 months ago

Very well said. I agree with you 100%. I sure hope that Bill Self would reflect back deeply on the season and the loss to UM and make adjustments on his philosphy towards PT.

You are absolutely correct about EJ. I also feel that after OK State loss EJ should have been moved to SG position but Self stuck with him at the PG position. EJ made so many mistakes during the season but coach would not bench him. From the beginning of the MU game it was clear that EJ's head was not in the game and he should have been benched in the 2nd half.

HCBS is a great coach. At this point I'd not trade him for any other coach. While outcome of the UM game can't be changed now, I hope that HCBS will make adjustments in this regard going forward.

Adam Tyler 2 years, 4 months ago

Could the Wear twins transfer without any problems? They have already transfered once and I thought they would lose a year of eligibility if they did it again.

Have they graduated already?

Adam Tyler 2 years, 4 months ago

I wouldn't be thrilled to land the wear twins, but I wouldnt be upset either.

If no better options present themselves, why not? Its only one season and we could use the experience.

North carolina, ucla, and then KANSAS...jump from one blue blood to the next much!?

texashawk10 2 years, 4 months ago

The "5th year senior rule" applies to players who have graduated from their current school, have eligibility left, and enroll in a graduate program not offered at their current school. If the Wear twins aren't graduating by the end of summer, they aren't going anywhere. I have the quotes around the rule because it applies to any player who has graduated, has eligibility left, and enrolls in a graduate program not at their current school. Jordan Webb took advantage of this rule and had/has 2 years to play at Colorado because he graduated from KU in 3 years.

JayHawkFanToo 2 years, 4 months ago

Lyons had a graduate transfer exemption, in the same way KU got Dane Crist.

Jack Wilson 2 years, 4 months ago

Always like your recruiting discussions. Just no real good options now for next season. We can only hope that with the coaching changes, a nice top 50 power forward will get released from his scholarship. Otherwise, it will be another Braeden Anderson or Traylor late in the process.

On Adams, he posted the following just after the loss Friday .. "Wonder what god has in store for me from this point on and where I'm going to end up next .. the ride was epic ..."

I think the guy has a good future talent-wise, but it will really surprise me if he stays.

texashawk10 2 years, 4 months ago

HEM, the player you are referring to in regards to being a 100+ ranked kid for depth that Self will be looking at is Junior Etou. Etou is listed at 6'8" 220 lbs. is probably Miami bound right now, but if Self starts taking serious interest in him, it could be enough to make him change his mind about Miami. I believe he was ranked quite a bit higher than he is now earlier in the recruiting process and KU showed some early interest in him, but backed off as they started targeting better players.

texashawk10 2 years, 4 months ago

He won't see any significant PT next year if he came to KU, but Bill Self has also never been a coach to not use a scholarship if he has one available and Junior Etou is the kind of player that Self will typically add in May or June if he's still available. Etou plays a position KU will lack depth at next year and you never know when one of these kids turns into a 13% player like a Kevin Young. If there are no other options available, Self could do worse than Etou to fill out the roster.

Kye Clark 2 years, 4 months ago

I like the insight, but disagree with the desire to add another 4. If it wasn't going to be Randle (or another blue chipper), I'm not interested. Perry obviously will get all the minutes he wants. And I'm all for developing Embiid, Lucas, & even Traylor. Especially Embiid. I'm pretty excited about him. Slayr pointed out in his post above how freshman get the quick hook and aren't allowed to develop. This holds true with two exceptions - 1) the player is too good to keep off the floor. See BMac. Or 2) Self has no other options. Personally, I'd like to see Self forced into playing Embiid next year. If he's not forced to do so, I think Self buries him on his bench.

AsadZ 2 years, 4 months ago

I hope Self can find a 245-250 lb Big, got to be wide and thick, a banger in the lane

JayhawkRock78 2 years, 4 months ago

Dude, Landon Lucas is 6'10" 245. He is ready to do just that next year. Couple him with Ellis & Traylor down low. Tharp, Frankamp, Selden rotating with the rest of this years bench. We are young but talented! Maybe we win our 10th conference without any more blue chips coming this year.

texashawk10 2 years, 4 months ago

There's not a talented enough big out there right now that Self could that would push Embiid for PT. If Embiid doesn't play next year, it's because he isn't ready or good enough yet.

Jack Wilson 2 years, 4 months ago

All great points .. but since when does "common-sense" have anything to do with it, right?

I mean Rio could start next season. I watch the guy and he has the makings of a top defender, excellent penetrator, and all around offensive creator. Not sure he grasps the big picture though. If he does stay, he gets it.

Kye Clark 2 years, 4 months ago

ralster - I'm a big fan of Rio, or at least the idea of the kind of player Rio can be if he dedicates himself. And forget 3rd competent ball handler, we need the 2nd one! Because right now it's Tharpe and...? We don't know how Selden, Greene, Frankamp, or Mason are at handling the rock at the elite D-1 level.

LngTimeFan 2 years, 4 months ago

A coach who adapts to an opponents game plan better than HCBS is hard to find long term. Sure, Withey played his heart out but the smalls offense ran him ragged. JT will be a big time player for KU, perhaps a budding version of TRob, let's hope. The last couple of minutes the whole team lost itself, not Bill. Who wants a Pitino, or Calipari, or Thompson, et all here and HCBS in OSU?! I sure don't. That would be idiotic and make me question the direction of KU BB if that ever happened. KU lost a big game. So have other big time schools. Disappointing yes. KU will be just fine with the incoming player and most of the returnees. Rio needs to work hard and earn his time, he and coach make that call. It's time we all move along and stop beating things to death.

KemDooKU 2 years, 4 months ago

I replayed the end of the KU -v- Michigan game last night and we won this time - not sure how it happened but Congrads to Johnson who made the first free throw and we won by one-

nuleafjhawk 2 years, 4 months ago

yeah, on my DVR, The Nutcracker drove in on that WIDE OPEN baseline, made a layup to tie it and got fouled. Then he made the free-throw (like a senior should do in that situation) and we won the game that we should have never let get close by playing NOT TO LOSE instead of playing to win when we had a 14 point lead.

AirCapJay 2 years, 4 months ago

On my DVR, Withey makes one of his missed bunnies near the end of the second quarter that puts us up by 16, allowing our defense more breathing room and forcing MU to start fouling eariler. We win by 6.

Redlandsjhawk 2 years, 4 months ago

“The game against Kansas, with us coming back and winning, I guess just after that game we were saying, ‘God has something in store for us going to the next game,’” Michigan’s Tim Hardaway Jr., said.

Well if that's not an admission that it was a freaking miracle they won, then nothing is.

TexiCaliHawk 2 years, 4 months ago

It all comes down to 'Basketball I.Q.' people -- with 4 Seniors (3 of them 5th Year Seniors!), it is forgiveable that we may not possess the most athletic ability, or raw basketball talent; however, it is NOT forgiveable that we grossly lack the requisite 'smarts' to make better, more intelligent basketball decisions. Our number of turnovers due to unforced errors ('boneheaded plays' as HCBS calls them) was our undoing as we played well enough as a TEAM to beat Michigan for 38-39 minutes.

I love E.J. and all he has meant to the program over the past 4 years (averaging over 30 wins per season and 4 Big 12 Conference Championships as well as NCAA Tourney runs -- do you know that this is only the third 30-Win Season in Michigan's 'HISTORY'?!); however, he did not demonstrate 'Basketball I.Q.' on Friday -- heck, he violated the #1 'Man Law' (hitting a guy below the belt) . . . within the opening minutes of the game and no provocation. E.J. is not a thug; rather an incredibly intelligent, well-spoken individual who finished last year strong, but actually regressed in many ways this year. HCBS should have benched E.J. like he did Ben as he inhibited our ability to win the game -- drawing up a play for him to take the 'final shot' (er, I mean 'pass') when all we needed was 2 pts. to send the game into a 2nd O.T. was not a good example of 'Basketball I.Q.'

(More . . . )

Steve Brown 2 years, 3 months ago

can't help wondering if he 'wanted' benched for some unexplained reason.

TexiCaliHawk 2 years, 4 months ago

All that said, we STILL had a chance to hold on and win the game as we were up by 5 points with :21 to play and lack of 'Basketball I.Q.' got in the way. Did any of the coaches tell the players during one of the (many) timeouts that WE had the 'Possession' Arrow, so if there was a loose 50/50 ball, we should simply tie them up to take over possession? Not getting the ball over the :10 line is unforgiveable and the one thing a guard has to do in that situation. Missing the front end of a 1-and-1 happens to even the best players, but making poor decisions (again, regardless of whether E.J. is playing 'out of position' at PG vs. SG, or the health of his knees), he did not exhibit 'Basketball I.Q.' befitting a Senior Leader.

I am confident that had we held on to win that game, we would have beaten Florida to move on to the Final Four against Syrcacuse -- imagine the 'story line' there as we would have had an opportunity for revenge from the 2003 National Championship game debacle in New Orleans. Plus, the addition of Wichita State would have given a strong KANSAS storyline with the 'chance' of meeting each other in the National Championship game (something even our State Legislators could not pull off).

The 'Bottom Line' is that we lost -- poor decisions were made that HCBS and I'm sure E.J. would love to have back. This loss hurts and will continue to hurt for some time; however, we cannot lose sight of the tremendous ride this KU TEAM gave us when we look back with objectivity. The 'highs' were tremendously high (@ Ohio St., @KSU, @OSU, ISU, @ISU, TT on 'Senior Night' honoring 4 stud Seniors) including the emergence of Ben McLemore as one of the most talented Jayhawks players to play in a Kansas uniform; and the 'lows' were incredibly low (MSU, OSU, @TCU, @BU, Michigan).

I look at our Media Guide every year when it comes out and lament the 'near misses'/close losses that we have experienced in the NCAA Tourney over the past several years -- if even 'half' of those games go our way, we take on an entirely different aura/perception within the pantheon of college basketball . . . THE undisputed College Basketball 'Kings' (not just 'Royalty') as Conference Championships are great, but what you do in the NCAA Tournament is what gets remembered longest. However, I also count up the ridiculous number of wins (#2 All-Time just 10 behind UK who grew their program on the back of a Kansan, Adolf Rupp, as well as confirmed 'cheating' during the '50's) as well as the tremendous character and quality of student-athletes we all have been so richly blessed to watch play in a KANSAS uniform over those same number of years.

It absolutely sucks to lose the way we did on Friday, but the sun did come up on Saturday and with a fresh perspective, I am ready now to close this chapter and move on to a new one with an exciting line-up of young, but talented Jayhawks who will no doubt (continue) to make us proud to be KANSAS Basketball fans next fall.

KemDooKU 2 years, 4 months ago

Next up Royals and Chiefs - and the heartbreak continues!

alphajay 2 years, 4 months ago

You gotta think better of them than that!

nuleafjhawk 2 years, 4 months ago

Not for me.

No expectations = no heartbreak.

jayhawkinATL 2 years, 4 months ago

So...do BMac and Withey get into the AFH rafters as 2nd and 3rd-team all-Americans???

Adam Tyler 2 years, 4 months ago

I think Jeffs best arguement is two-time Big 12 defensive player of the year.

I still don't think that is enough unfortunately. I really wish his dominance would be forever remembered in AFH.

JayhawkRock78 2 years, 4 months ago

I'd go with most blocks in KU history, a final four/championship game, four big 12 championship teams and a few b12 tourney champs thrown in, most ncaa tourney blocks in one game record (10). I think he tied the total tourney blocks record. Plus a few all american teams. I'd like to think that gets him in the rafters.

actorman 2 years, 4 months ago

Those aren't rules any more, they're just guidelines. They wanted to have more flexibility to put people like Jeff up there, and I think he deserves it. (I believe that's the way Kirk Hinrich got up there -- another deserving player who didn't quite fit any of the criteria.)

texashawk10 2 years, 4 months ago

Hinrich made it because he is technically a two time first team AA. All Wooden Award finalists are considered 1st team All-Americans and Hinirch was a 2x Wooden Award finalist. This is also how Brandon Rush is going to end up in the rafters one day. The only other criteria left off by kD was academic AA of the year which is how Jacque Vaughn got up there and how Cole Aldrich will get up there. Agree or disagree, that's the reality of getting up in the rafters.

Steve Brown 2 years, 3 months ago

Those were the qualifiers, made sense keep it extremely small club, yet good ole' Roy lowered the bar which may make sense given players didn't stay 4 years. Heck if women and non property owners can vote, why not a few 1X consensus get hung?

jayhawkinATL 2 years, 4 months ago

I know all-American status is one qualification that will get you in the rafters...just don't know if it's only 1st team honors.

Michael Luby 2 years, 4 months ago

Travis Releford deserves to have his jersey hung. So does Jeff Withey.

texashawk10 2 years, 4 months ago

Sorry, but no they don't. Getting your jersey hung in the south rafters is an honor that should be reserved for the elite of the elite. Releford and Withey are good players, but they aren't south rafters worthy.

702Hawk 2 years, 4 months ago

I am surprised nobody has asked this yet but when is the 13-14 team going to play the first game of HORSE against each other. With the types of shooters that we got coming in maybe it should be PIG.

Bedore could you try and convince HCBS to have you record it and play it here?

machinegun 2 years, 4 months ago

Big Bill is a great coach! Next year, he will have a chance to do it all over again. It will be another huge challenge for one of the top 5 coaches in all of college basketball with all of the new players. Will 14-4 win the Big 12 next year?

Kye Clark 2 years, 4 months ago

Texas Tech to hire Tubby Smith. Love it. I'm not saying he's a great coach (although he does have a NC), but he's very good and definitely right at the ceiling of any coach that program could hope to attract. Anything that makes the league better.

AsadZ 2 years, 4 months ago

Good point. We need a stronger B12. This is a good move by Tech.

Kye Clark 2 years, 4 months ago

He did such a good job, ralster can't even remember the name of "the interim guy" :)

Something Walker I think.

I agree he was doing a decent job. And I think had Tubby not been available they probably would have stood pat. But this is Tech's M.O. it seems like. Bob Knight. Billy Gillespie, now Tubby. Those are 3 high quality coaches, all probably with their best coaching years behind them, but Tech rolling the dice they might have a little coaching magic left in them.

texashawk10 2 years, 4 months ago

Tubby won't make Tech relevant even in the Big 12. He's an average at best recruiter and developer of talent. His slow style of play may steal a few wins for Tech, but his other flaws will keep Tech from becoming a serious contender.

REHawk 2 years, 4 months ago

I would imagine that the hiring of Tubby will cost them a bit more than that embarrassing $300K they contracted for with this season's interim coach.

UncleMarty 2 years, 4 months ago

Rio if you are reading this, I think you should set that meeting up with Coach Self asap, so you can get your release and move forward in your career. Although KU is a great school, I personally think you would be better off going elsewhere. Your style of play does not fit into HCBS system. If you stay at KU you are setting yourself up to be another EJ.

AsadZ 2 years, 4 months ago

Rio, Uncle is a bad influence. He is a troll on this site. You have a great career path at KU. Just look at Tharpe. He was in a similar situation as you last year and see how much PT he got this year when nobody was expecting

You have the talent and skills to become a great guard at KU under Self. Its up to you. Work hard over the summer and you will flourish.

texashawk10 2 years, 4 months ago

I agree with the principle of this that Rio does have the skill set to be a very good player for KU. But if Rio is reading this website and caring what we think, then he shouldn't stay at KU because that would be a case his skin not being thick enough to handle the pressures of playing a major school the caliber of KU and would be better suited in the Mountain West or WCC where there isn't the intense scrutiny by fans.

Kye Clark 2 years, 4 months ago

Rio, why would you leave? I mean, where else can you have this much fun eating pretend cereal?

UncleMarty 2 years, 4 months ago

Hahaha, i do agree that I am a troll on this site. A KU fan by default and my guy Rio is going to transfer. You heard it first!! Bye KU and thanks for all the good and bad memories.

Lance Hobson 2 years, 4 months ago

Very tough loss. Will never be over it.

Tony Bandle 2 years, 4 months ago

Hold your wife in your arms as she quietly passes away from brain cancer, then tell me again how you will never get over a basketball game!!

JayHawkFanToo 2 years, 4 months ago

Thanks Oak for the dose of reality and what is really important in life. In the big scheme of things, sports are just entertainment and cannot ever compare to some of the heartbreaks most of us experience, at one time or another, in our lives.

hotrodm 2 years, 4 months ago

3 point lead, just seconds on the clock, foul the guy at half court and put him on the line. When will Bill learn this?

Robert Hunzicker 2 years, 4 months ago

HEY, Michigan had 3 freshmen 1 soph and 1 Jr AND BEAT FOUR SENIORS AND I LOTTERY PICK

were in and ready to roll

SURE HOPE WE FIND SOME REALLY GOOD GUARDS NOT JUST GOOD ONES BUT REALLY GOOD ONES

Steve Brown 2 years, 3 months ago

Game day, I am hanging the flag, along with our neighbors, all the Tiger & Purple flags put away. The crimson and blue will wave this weekend in tribute to dances past and yet to come. They call us snobs & delusional, Guilty.
Guess they don't sell Shocker garage flags, don't see any.

Got the DVR set, snacks coming out, beverages iced down, house music system warming up by playing Crimson & Blue, I'm a JJJ Hawk, even Home on the Range, Dorothy will sing over the rainbow at noon, it's a tradition for final fours. From 3-4 we play the chant, Georgian Monks chant, it's not the same yet close.

Windex the front storm door window, Tiger rug mat upside down on front step to clean your feet of impurities. Yet they are not coming today, I am ready, yet they won't come, they will mulch and shop and fish and hit balls into the rough. My pals won't fill my home today, and I will miss them, everyone.

Years ago at Dallas Final Four walking from Anotole to Reunion Arena with our early versions of the red beak 'em shirt, all the Louisville fans honked and waved thinking it was a mamouth cardinal on our front, we just waved the trojan horse and smiled. We were thanking Ted who recruited Calvin Ronnie and the others, wishing him well, glad to have Larry, our future was ahead of us.

Lots of March dances since that spring day, most of them hurt in the end, why do we come back knowing the pain, I am not sure, somebody help me, when does this emptiness subside, is it just a game or is it religion. Somebody help me.

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