The year was 1978 and on a warm day in late June, I entered the world at the base of the Flatirons in beautiful Boulder, Colorado.
Because I am a native of Colorado (yes, I used to have the sticker on my car) I instantly was granted membership into the fandom of any and all Colorado sports teams. Throughout the years, I've even been known to embellish the circumstances surrounding my birth to tell the tale that the first thing I remember seeing was glorious Folsom Field, home of the Colorado Buffaloes. Not true. Sue me.
My parents are both natives of Kansas, my mom attended Lawrence High and my dad is a Shawnee Mission South graduate. Because of that, and their love for Kansas University, I moved to Lawrence when I was 10, a few months after Danny and the Miracles made their run to the title (sweet timing, right) and have been here ever since.
I continue to call Colorado home and made many attempts at returning there after moving to Lawrence. I intended to return for high school.... didn't happen. I was certain that I would attend Colorado State University for college.... that didn't happen either, mostly because of the reputation of KU's Journalism School and my in-state status. After that, though, I was sure I would move back to Colorado for my first job. As you surely know by now, that didn't happen either. I used to wonder why I never made it back there, but then it hit me: Lawrence must be a pretty great place and I must like it here. Both are true.
During my time in Lawrence, I attended Pinckney Elementary School for two years, West Junior High for three and graduated from Lawrence High in 1996. After that I attended Kansas University and graduated in 2000 with a degree in Journalism.
During my college days, I covered the KU baseball and basketball teams for the University Daily Kansan. While I enjoyed covering baseball and learned a lot while doing it, basketball was the beat everybody wanted and I still remember my first hoops story for the UDK: Michael Jordan retires. There was something pretty cool about seeing my byline next to a mug shot of Jordan. Other highlights from my time at the UDK included my work following the death of Wilt Chamberlain and a great series that my roommate (Sam Mellinger of the Kansas City Star) and I did on the top 10 KU athletes of the century around the Y2K craze. The KU athletic department voted on the top 10 and Sam and I split up the names to do stories on five each. Mine: Wilt, Ray Evans, Al Oerter, Jim Ryun and Ralph Miller. What a great time.
In addition to working for the UDK, I was the publisher of a KU sports web site run by Rivals.com — JayhawkTalk.com — which I continued to operate for a little more than a year after graduation.
I joined the World Company in June of 2001, when I was hired to become the sports editor of the Bonner Springs Chieftain and Basehor Sentinel weekly newspapers. In 2004, my position grew to include becoming the sports editor of the Shawnee Dispatch, another weekly, which I helped start from the ground up. In July of 2007 I got the call to the big leagues when I was named High School Sports Editor at the Journal-World.
It was an awesome feeling covering high school sports in the town I grew up in. Many of the coaches who were around when I was at LHS still are there today and it has been an absolute blast reconnecting with them.
In February of 2010, my job title changed again when I was promoted into the role of KU football beat writer. After helping out with our football coverage during Mark Mangino's final couple of seasons, I covered the entire Turner Gill era and lived to tell about it. I never played football — unless you count games in the snow or flag football with friends — but have made it my daily goal to dig as deep as I can into the KU program to help explain how and why things happen while also analyzing the players, coaches and trends surrounding the Kansas football team in a basketball-crazed town.
In May of 2007, my wife, Starr, and I were married in Ocho Rios, Jamaica, where we were anointed by the natives as "Jamericans."
In my spare time, I enjoy traveling, basketball, golf, tennis, yard games, playing guitar, fantasy sports and cheering for any and all Colorado teams.
The head football coach at the Texas high school where David Beaty once coached and played announced Monday that he was joining Beaty in Lawrence.
Known mostly as a role player who fills a defensive niche at Kansas University's revolving door of a 5 spot, Landen Lucas helped KU hold off West Virginia, 75-65, Tuesday night at Allen Fieldhouse by making his sixth consecutive start and delivering 16 rebounds and 4 blocks in 29 minutes while also adding nine points on 4-of-5 shooting. By Matt Tait
Known mostly as a role player filling a defensive niche at KU’s 5 spot, Landen Lucas made his presence felt on that end of the floor, finishing with 16 rebounds and 4 blocks in 29 minutes, but also contributed on offense more than he normally does, adding 9 points on 4-of-5 shooting and No. 6 Kansas knocked off No. 10 WVU, 75-65. By Matt Tait
Granted the competition was not the stiffest, but the Kansas University men’s basketball team got a much-needed positive outcome on the road on Saturday, in the form of a 75-56 rout of TCU in Fort Worth, Texas.
The Big 12 Conference on Friday morning announced the move of two conference football games during the upcoming season to accommodate requests from the Big 12's television partners.
The 15 returning letter winners on the Kansas University softball team do not have to strain too hard to recall the wonderful memories of a 2015 season that resulted in a No. 23 ranking in the RPI poll, a second straight trip to the NCAA Tournament and the first 40-win season in 23 years. By Matt Tait
David Beaty’s second recruiting class as Kansas University football coach might have been a few bodies light, but what it lacked in numbers, Beaty made up for in enthusiasm. By Matt Tait
Kansas State coach Bruce Weber told himself before Wednesday’s Sunflower Showdown at Allen Fieldhouse that he was not going to let the calls by the officials get him barking from the sideline. And, for the most part, the fourth-year K-State coach avoided any outbursts during a 77-59 loss to No. 7 Kansas, which both Weber and a couple of his players said they thought was much closer than the final score indicated. By Matt Tait
Instead of falling victim to a wild and crazy KU surge in which the home team simply overpowers them, the Wildcats (13-9 overall, 2-7 Big 12) victimized themselves as much as anything, committing costly turnovers and helping No. 7 Kansas grind its way to a 77-59 victory. By Matt Tait
Any time a 10-point halftime lead turns into a 10-point home loss, you’re bound to see a few long faces and hear a couple of heavy sighs from the losing team after the game.