Monday, January 31, 2011


Wanna bet? Duke the favorite to win NCAA basketball championship; Kansas 8/1

Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski talks with his team during the Blue Devils’ 76-60 victory Jan. 15 against Virginia. Ranked No. 3 in the country but sure to fall after Sunday’s 93-78 loss to St. John’s, Duke is the early betting favorite to win the NCAA championship, but the field is so wide-open, the Devils’ 3/1 odds seem a bit of a stretch.

Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski talks with his team during the Blue Devils’ 76-60 victory Jan. 15 against Virginia. Ranked No. 3 in the country but sure to fall after Sunday’s 93-78 loss to St. John’s, Duke is the early betting favorite to win the NCAA championship, but the field is so wide-open, the Devils’ 3/1 odds seem a bit of a stretch.


A Google of “odds to win the NCAA basketball championship” brought me to, which I guess makes me a Vegas insider of sorts.

Not surprisingly, Duke has the best odds to win it all for what would be the first successful defense of a national championship since Florida did it in 2007. If superstar freshman point guard Kyrie Irving returns, which at this point seems like a probability, though not a certainty, Duke’s the smartest choice, even after Sunday’s 15-point loss to St. John’s at Madison Square Garden.

The Blue Devils had to learn how to play with Irving, then without him, and if he’s able to return from a serious big-toe injury being treated without surgery, they’ll have to learn how to play with him again. Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski has figured out bigger challenges, such as taming massive egos and getting them all to listen to one voice on the way to an Olympic Gold medal.

Still, even with Irving, who led Duke in scoring and assists at the time of his injury, this feels as if it’s too wide-open a field for one team to have odds as low as the 3/1 listed on the website that gives odds for 35 schools, plus a field (all others) entry.

The shortest odds of the rest: Ohio State (5/1); Kansas (8/1); Kentucky, Pittsburgh, Michigan State (12/1); Washington, Villanova (20/1); Syracuse, field (25/1); Illinois, Kansas State, Purdue and Texas (30/1).

The list shows where each entry opened and where it moved as of Sunday night. Eight of the entries are listed the same as where they opened. Does that mean they haven’t changed or are they off the board? Don’t know. You’d have to ask an online gambler.

Anyway, Kansas State opened at 10/1, and even at 30/1 is the worst bet on the board. The Wildcats’ best shot at a postseason championship is the NIT, and that assumes two things: K-State will get an invitation, and senior Jacob Pullen will decide to play.

Kentucky (too young) and Michigan State (talented junior guard Korie Lucious recently was booted off the team) are overvalued.

Kansas, which deserves the No. 2 spot when the polls are released today, isn’t a bad bet at 8/1, but there are five better ones:

  1. Texas at 30/1. This shows the nation still views the Longhorns as a football school, but this year they have a far better basketball team than football. So tough on the inside, Texas has a legitimate chance to win it all, certainly a much better shot than 30/1.
  2. BYU at 60/1. Whenever a team has the best player on the floor, it has a shot to win the game. With Jimmer Fredette, BYU will have the best player on the floor every game it plays.
  3. San Diego State at 40/1. Steve Fisher always has been and always will be an underrated coach. Don’t forget, he won a national championship at Michigan, which makes his team all the more dangerous.
  4. Purdue at 30/1. The Boilermakers took a hit losing Robbie Hummel, but still have the best 1-2 punch in the country in center JaJuan Johnson and shooting guard E’Twaun Moore.
  5. Syracuse at 25/1. Lost four in a row after opening the season 18-0, but that can happen to any Big East team given the rigors of the schedule.


Michael Bratisax 11 years, 12 months ago

Why? It certainly brought discussion. Keegan is top class reporter and we are lucky to have him.

Michael Bratisax 11 years, 12 months ago

No you didn't and I didn't mean to imply you had.

Jeffery Barrett 11 years, 12 months ago

Hey, Keegan's on the boards! AND he used to be in the Coast Guard!

Michael Bratisax 11 years, 12 months ago

And a moron is on the boards and he used to be straight!

LAJayhawk 11 years, 12 months ago

I made this comment on the bottom, so I apologize for repeating, but the odds Keegs reported are way, way, WAY off. When exactly did you look at these numbers Tom?

Ohio St 7-2 KU 6-1 Texas 12-1... yes, 30-1 would be a decent bet, unfortunately, no one will give it to you right now. KSU 60-1 Mich State 75-1 (not even close to 12-1 listed above)

Duke is actually 2-1 not 3-1... yes, somehow they've gone up which means people have probably made bets on them to win.

amatxjayhawk 11 years, 12 months ago

Should have know this was a waste of time when I saw the subject and the author. My bad.

Kevin John 11 years, 12 months ago

I am not one to usually complain, but I have to agree. Could care less for Duke, besides they can't seem to beat unranked teams on the road. As they have proven today at MSG, "live by the three, die by the three". Somewhere - someplace Dook Vital is crying because of the loss the Dookies took today. Duke = Fluke and last years bracket was a joke, Dook had it way too easy. But that is old news, I am just focused on this year right now.

ParisHawk 11 years, 12 months ago

Betting odds are based on two things:

1) the relative likelihood of the outcomes, and 2) the relative weight of betting on each outcome.

More people tend to bet on Duke, so Vegas shortens their odds: this stops the betting from getting too one-sided, which is risky for the bookies. Same thing happens to KU because of fan loyalty, which is why betting for KU is not the best way to win money.

In other words, betting odds say more about what bettors think is going to happen than about what is really going to happen.

Brianna Zaleski 11 years, 12 months ago


This is a great point and one that never gets talked about today in a sports world where the line on the games is as commonplace information as where the game will be played and at what time. Vegas doesn't care who wins or even care about getting the score accurate. They just want to entice enough voters on to either side of the betting fence so as to minimize their risk and still make money. Even if there is an exact even amount of people betting on each side, Vegas still makes money because they take a cut of every bet. Its not like they push. So I just chuckle when I hear these morons on TV try and break down the significance of why Green Bay is a 3.5 favorite on the Steelers (for example), is it the weather?, is it the air in the balls?, is it the pre-game meal? No it is the number where Vegas thinks that you will bet on the Packers where I will bet on the Steelers. Nothing more. And if the betting gets lop-sided before the game, then Vegas just changes the line to entice more voters onto the slim side. Good Point

LAJayhawk 11 years, 12 months ago

You are mostly accurate, ZIG. However, I feel the need to point out a couple of things:

"Even if there is an exact even amount of people betting on each side, Vegas still makes money because they take a cut of every bet."

True, but actually Vegas absolutely WANTS even bets on both sides. That is the ultimate goal. They make money on the "juice," so they would prefer it if they had even bet amounts on both side of the line. That way they limit their risk and maximize profit. This is the reason why a line will move as bets come in (i.e. the Packers line opened at 2 and has moved to 2.5 and then 3, meaning more people have bet on the Packers and Vegas is trying to encourage bets on the Steelers). If the Superbowl is set at 3 points and the Packers win by exactly 3 (assuming the line never moved), then the only people who win are the sports books.

"I just chuckle when I hear these morons on TV try and break down the significance of why Green Bay is a 3.5 favorite on the Steelers (for example), is it the weather?, is it the air in the balls?, is it the pre-game meal? No it is the number where Vegas thinks that you will bet on the Packers where I will bet on the Steelers."

This is partially correct. Yes, the line is based on a better's perception, but all of what you mentioned plays a part. Serious gamblers (those who bet hundreds of thousands to millions over a season) will take EVERYTHING into account. They want as much information as possible: weather, injuries, off the field issues, if a QB got drunk the night before, etc, etc. So Vegas does have to think about these things because their biggest clients do.

Vegas will adjust the line as bets come in, but if they are way off to start, they will get hammered at the end... they will get HUGE bets at the beginning and won't be able to make up for it no matter how much they adjust the line. So it behooves them to judge correctly out of the gate.... and they are shockingly good at it most of the time.

LAJayhawk 11 years, 12 months ago

Thank you for pointing this out. As I started reading the article, this is exactly the comment I wanted to make. The perception of those making wagers is always the variable left out when people discuss lines and spreads. Vegas couldn't care less about who wins. They want even bets on both sides, so, therefore, they must adjust lines to match the bets that will come in. More people would bet on Duke than any other, therefore, they have the highest odds.

Vegas must successful gauge the betting public's perception of how the game will turn out. So, in a way, it is those who place bets as a collective whole who decide where the spread is set.

Lonnie Ross Dillon 11 years, 12 months ago

Oh for crying out loud, give it a rest. FYI, I got KU at 10/1 when they were in Vegas.

LAJayhawk 11 years, 12 months ago

Nice. They are at 6 to 1 right now on Sportsbook.

Michael Bratisax 11 years, 12 months ago

The NY Giants were 100-1 preseason the year they beat the Pats.. And no but i wish.

LAJayhawk 11 years, 12 months ago

My guess would be we were 12 or 13 to 1 to start the season. No idea, but that would be my guess.

klineisanazi 11 years, 12 months ago

I don't know who "deserves" it, but I look for Texas to jump KU to #2. They just went on a tear and beat all the other legitimate contenders for the conference title by double-digit margins in the last two weeks. They are playing as well as anyone else in the country.

Michael Bratisax 11 years, 12 months ago

Agree...maybe A&M will play better at home.

Dale Kroening 11 years, 12 months ago

Wont happen, Ku only has 1 loss, Texas has 3. Jayhawks will be 2nd in the polls, even though Texas beat us. Im thinking UT will be 3 or 4.

Michael Bratisax 11 years, 12 months ago

After watching Texas dismantle A&M last night..Texas should probably be #2. How is Illinois ranked w/7 losses?

Joe Ross 11 years, 12 months ago

I guess to be a "true" kansas fan you have to ignore any news or perspectives that might point out areas of improvement in our team or give credit to others. While the timing of the article is definitely a buzz kill (coming off a great win over KSU on Kansas Day, Wayne Simien's jersey retirement, and TRob's emotional and triumphant return), the fact is that people are too quickly villified for legimate perspectives on a consistent basis and many fans have a queasy stomach when it comes to considering information that may not always put Kansas at the top of the heap. As far as Keegs, well...I haven't made up my mind. It's hard to judge a person's intent even when seeing the product of their work. I've seen him write some flattering articles that draw praise from readers and I've seen some otherwise. I won't say this article is particularly egregious for a couple of reasons. One, Keegan didn't set the odds and he's reporting the stats without saying anything negative about Kansas at all. Two, he says plainly that Kansas deserves the number 2 spot in the country when the polls come out today. Three, he's not out of the company of sane people who would disagree with Vegas odds prognosticators and pick other teams ahead of Kansas (although Syracuse right now is a bit of a stretch right now). Paris Hawk has it exactly right. These odds don't mean diddly squat. They are completely irrelevant. Yet they are a part of sporting and as such I think they should be of interest to just about every fan.

jhox 11 years, 12 months ago

If I was in Vegas, I'd jump all over that Texas bet at 30-1. I'm not saying they'll win it all, but those odds really stand out against the others. They have as good a chance as anyone to win it all, including us.

RockCaCO3 11 years, 12 months ago

I wonder if Puke is still 8/1 after they got smoked by St. Johns? Actually, I really don't give a s*#$.

clevelandjayhawker 11 years, 12 months ago

Well im sure Puke will get their normal Bracket.....thus it will be a cake walk when the #2 seed is the #10 overall team and the 3 seed will be michigan state or something

ahpersecoachingexperience 11 years, 12 months ago

Wow! Way to write an article about something you know nothing about. I especially enjoy when the reporters start their thinking process with a google search. That's great in-depth insight ya got there. (insert everthing already said by previous posters about point spreads/odds. Case in point, how comfortable do you think those with money on duke feel today?)

Jeffery Barrett 11 years, 12 months ago

WOW! There REALLY IS a 1st time for everything!!! I AGREE with ahperwhatever!

Martin Rosenblum 11 years, 12 months ago

Assuming the group listed, they would be the final teams playing in the tournament. Matching losses, the KU-Texas game was somewhat affected by the emotions of the Robinson family situation and the hype for Texas to break the KU 69 game home winning streak. The Duke-St Johns game had neither factor. Simply a loss to a St Johns team by 15. So each has 1 loss now. Losing to Texas is more understandable than Duke losing to the Johnnies.

Dale Kroening 11 years, 12 months ago

Duke has 2 losses. Their first loss was @ FSU January 12th.

KU_FanSince75 11 years, 12 months ago

Yea, Duke getting spanked by St. John's----they really showed yesterday that they are NC team material. Right! I think I'll stick with my Jayhawks, thank you very much!

SherronBallins 11 years, 12 months ago

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

Saad Saifeddine 11 years, 12 months ago

show some respect man. with that second comment about keegan, you remind me of classless colorado fans yelling "fu kansas". not classy post bro. I do, however, agree with u on the dookies cake walk last year

Michael Bratisax 11 years, 12 months ago

What were Bradly's odds of making it to the final game last year? What were our odds? I'm sure Keegan wrote this as a general interest story but there is no story here. A six game run against unknown teams is little more than guess work.

Chris Shaw 11 years, 12 months ago

How do you have the rankings for today?

Here is Mine: I'm okay with either Texas or Kansas being #2. Since I don't really care I put them tied for second.

1) Ohio State

2) Texas 2) Kansas

4) Pitt


6) UConn

7) Duke

8) Kentucky

9) Notre Dame

10) BYU

I would definitely put a Ben Franklin down on Texas at 30/1. I like BYU as well. Somebody other than Kansas is going to win a Championship sometime soon in the Big 12. Actually, I hope it happens when Kansas is technically having a "Down Year" (Just not this year).

Jacobpaul81 11 years, 12 months ago

There's a reason the Longhorns are 30/1. 1 Final Four in the 3 pt era. 3 Elite 8s. Prior to that, you gotta go back to 1947 to find any impact on the NCAA tourney by the Longhorns.

I'm a bit surprised the Buckeyes are 5/1: 2 Final Fours of the last 25, 3 Elite 8s of last 25. That's not exactly putting up numbers you can be confident in.

Especially not when you compare that to Duke and Kansas:

KU - 5 of the last 20 Final Fours and 7 of the last 25. 2 of the last 25 NCAA titles. 10 of last 25 Elite 8s.

Duke - 8 of last 20 Final Fours and 11 of the last 25. 4 of the last 25 NCAA titles. 12 of the last 25 Elite 8s.

bad_dog 11 years, 12 months ago

Yes, 0 for 4 Final Fours from Roy (now that is cause for tears) and one National Championship for one Final Four from Bill.

I like Bill's ratio better.

Michael Bratisax 11 years, 12 months ago

Roy made up for it in UNC with 3 Final 4s and 2 NCs. Easily the best since '04-05. As for Texas, 12 straight NCAA tournaments under Barnes, 3 elite 8s and ONE Final 4. Not great by KU standards but well above the average.

Hank Cross 11 years, 12 months ago

I'd take Larry Brown in the tourney over Roy and Self. He never suffered a huge upset and his coaching of the '88 title game was a complete masterpiece. It was an even bigger win than Villanova who had more talent throughout their roster. If you can win a title starting Chris Piper, you've done something special.

kesmithstl1 11 years, 12 months ago

Brown was good, but I believe Manning told the guys to scratch Brown's plan of slowing things down, and instead to run right with the Sooners.

Thomas Michaud 11 years, 12 months ago

I read the comments rather than the article ... excellent work guys!! :-)

Chris Shaw 11 years, 12 months ago

Anybody else ready for Coach K to retire? I'm ready for Chris Collins or Wojo to take over and have some sub-par seasons.

jhox 11 years, 12 months ago

I'm ready for him to hang it up. The sad thing is, he had become a non-factor until getting selected to coach the olympic team. Since then, he's actually been able to recruit good players again. If not for his olympic tie in, they'd still be down in the middle of the ACC pack.

Tim Orel 11 years, 12 months ago

One of my favorite seasons was a few years back when Coach K couldn't coach due to a bad back. I've had back problems, and I felt bad for him, but I loved the fact that his team stunk without his coaching. I wish he had retired then to spend more time with his family. I will be happy when he does leave, though I won't be happy he'll have the record for most victories by a coach.

Michael Bratisax 11 years, 12 months ago

Why?...He is still a top notch coach and recruiter. I hate Duke but Coach K is certainly not the reason.

Steve Kubler 11 years, 12 months ago

Thanks for the reminder, I had lost that link.

KUFan90 11 years, 12 months ago

Tom are you sure these odds were updated as of Sunday night? Anyone that would bet money on KSU to win it all at 30:1 right now should have their head examined.

I doubt they would see action even at 300:1.

And Michigan State 12:1? Those sound like odds from 3 weeks ago...

Ron Franklin 11 years, 12 months ago

Texas is the team to beat in the TOURNEY this year, IMHO.

They have a great frontline, they are only getting better. Their guard play is solid & only getting better.

KU is not a good match up for Texas unless the Hawks can shoot 40%/40%/75% from the line. (Don't forget they just beat KU in AFH. I was at the game, and our bigs were dominated/pushed around.......and can't hit free throws)

JayhawkBigXII 11 years, 12 months ago

Texas is peaking right now. Don't forget, KU pushed Texas around and literally beat the pants off of them the first half of the game. KU let their guard down and lost focus in the 2nd half. At that point, Texas had nothing to lose, and got hot with 3's at the end. It happens when you get complacent with a good lead at halftime. Texas will go down BIG the next time they meet.

Joe Baker 11 years, 12 months ago

Texas + Barney = no NC

He's had much better teams than this yr's team and he never produces. Barnes will always have the team but not the hardware.

Sorry- I don't hate Barney, he just can't make the big game.

Yes, JBXB12 they are peaking way too early. They can't keep this pace with who they have. They will fall and fall hard around tourney time.

Kurt Eskilson 11 years, 12 months ago

Under most circumstances, your analysis of the KU/Texas game might be valid. But in this particular case, Kansas' loss was not due to complacency. If they could've won it, they would've. Kansas was playing on pure emotion in the first half and gave the game everything they had. They were both physically and emotionally drained in the second. No excuses. Simple reality.

Hank Cross 11 years, 12 months ago

Typical Keegan nonsense, a huge waste of 0s and 1s. I'm only surprised that he didn't somehow cite wikipedia as a source.

Ron Franklin 11 years, 12 months ago

Also....Is it legal to make sports bets online?

This may be a dumb question, but I don't know the I must be....

I'd like to take Vegas up on the 30/1 odds against texas.

What site would I use to do this legally?

I'll be making my first trip to Vegas in April, so if anybody has any good '21' reference books or tools to better my chances of winning at BJ, I'd appreciate any advice.

Chris Shaw 11 years, 12 months ago

BlownJay: I love Vegas! Usually go a couple times a year. Make sure you visit the sports book at the Palazzo hotel called Lagasse's Stadium. IMO it's the best sports book in Vegas. If you can, try and reserve 1 or 2 spots for the "Stadium" seating for a game. If you're going this weekend for the Super Bowl, you probably won't get anything in there, but you should still visit because it's insane. Palazzo is connected with the Venetian. Look at the pic in the link and try and reserve a couple of spots. I spent 18 hours in there for the first weekend of the NFL season and it was awesome. The "Lounges" or "Beds" are nice because you can just fall asleep and take a nap. You can only do that if you're betting though.

In terms of Black Jack it's best if you can play with 5 or 6 of your friends at one table. That way nobody who's not gifted in the "Smart's Department" comes in and messes with the flow of the game. If you want to have a really good time go to "Old Town" and play the cheap Black Jack tables and just hop from casino to casino. Binions, Golden Nugget, etc etc right there along Freemont Street. You can't go wrong plus if you haven't played much black jack in a casino, your money will go a lot further in a place like that.

Ron Franklin 11 years, 12 months ago

Thanks for the insight. I passed through Vegas in 2006...but I traveled from Lawrence to Seattle & all the way down to Los Angeles. IT was a last hoorah for myself & two best friends before we Joined the real world. (or so we thought). Anyway, going to Vegas wasn't part of the trip, but we happened to be driving through on the way back....we hit the strip for an hour, I got up 180 bucks on roulette and called it quits while I was trip budget ran out in LA.....I'm going back an employed man, so I'm hoping to be able to afford a few more luxuries this time around.

I'm going with just my fiance, so I don' think I'll be able to 'buddy up' at any games, but I'll definitely take your advice on places to go.....

be there april 10th thru 15th

Chris Shaw 11 years, 12 months ago

If you get a chance...... go to the "KA" show at MGM. It's the Cirque Du Solei type thing they do. It's awesome! The Fiance would love it and plus it's the best set I've seen.

I'm not sure if they are still showing "Beattles Love" at the Mirage, but it's pretty sweet as well.

Chris Shaw 11 years, 12 months ago

The fiance would also like hanging out at Paris Hotel. They have good breakfasts if you like crepes. Also Mon Ami Gabi is a good place to eat there at Paris. You can eat outside and watch everybody walk by on the stip.

Ron Franklin 11 years, 12 months ago

We're definitely doing the Cirque....looking for one other 'show'....probably end up being like Penn & Teller or something supercommercialized & well known.

Tony Bandle 11 years, 12 months ago

May I make a suggestion..The Le Reve show at Wynn's is beyond belief and description.

It is a water-based show that has a special underwater stage and moats specifically built for the show. People dive into the water and disappear then reappear much later but the best part is the ceiling.

There is a chandelier at about 50' with curtains draping to the perimeter of the arena. The show starts, the ball shoots up pulling the curtains to reveal a 300' ceiling with an opening from which performers hang, dive, are lowered and are carried back up. The concept is about a dream.

I am ashamed that I have so inadequately described it but all of you will be amazed. I will definitely go again because there is so much going on, I'm sure I missed a whole lot of spectacle.

The cheapest tickets are the first two rows because there is some splashing but it's also the best view. Totally worth it!!

ahpersecoachingexperience 11 years, 12 months ago

<p> lines are usually good and they payout when you want them to. Unlike some

TRUEBLUEKU 11 years, 12 months ago

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

Martin Rosenblum 11 years, 12 months ago

Hmmm....getting a comment removed talking about sports betting. Is the LJW connected?

Chris Shaw 11 years, 12 months ago

Interesting article by Chris Resor. He rounds up the recruiting talk with KU and there potential future recruits. This guy has had a lot of interesting stuff and has been "The Lead" lately on most of the Daniels stuff. He makes predicitons and puts himself out there in terms of KU recruiting.

DocBean 11 years, 12 months ago

Duke is the favorite because everyone knows they'll get a cake schedule come tournament time. That's the problem with a bunch of Duke Alums setting up the tournament field.

Last year they were the worst #1 with the easiest road to the Final 4. This year will be the same, but even an easy schedule doesn't guarantee anything; they won't repeat.

Ron Franklin 11 years, 12 months ago

I get sooo mad when I think about last years tournament scheduling. I thought it was incredible.....truly unbelievable how a teams' yearly performance had very little impact on where they were placed in the bracket. I don't think I'll ever get over the fact that KU had to play a top 20 team.

KU was put in a bracket designed not let them see the final 4. Duke was put in a bracket designed to help them get there.

But I come back to this: If you really want to be THE champion, you've got to beat whoever is in front of you. KU had a crappy draw....but to be the champ you've got to BE THE CHAMP. Beat every team that challenges you for six games in a row....that's the deal.

jayhwkr77 11 years, 12 months ago

I have yet to read the comments so I appologize if I am repeating what has already been said but Keegan saying that BYU has a good shot to win it all should forbid him from ever posting an article in the LJ World again

KGphoto 11 years, 12 months ago

I'd take 2:1 odds that Kyle Singler is still the ugliest player in America come March.

Double or nothing coach k remains a rat.

JayhawkBigXII 11 years, 12 months ago

The entire Dook team is hands down the ugliest bunch ever. However, 'Ol Ratface is making the most cheddar.

John Randall 11 years, 12 months ago

Are you sure you didn't say that backward?

Funhawk 11 years, 12 months ago

Another interesting article by our wonderfully wacky, hilariously hip, sports guy. He gets your brain cells working in the morning and some people woke up on the wrong side of the bed. Would not be surprised to see Duke win it all again this year with a lot of the same guys. Still, Texas is on a roll. Last year's freshmen for Texas have grown up this year. Like Duke, when Texas smells blood, they go in for the kill. And, I think that is why I would not pick my beloved Hawks. That, and poor Bill is always uptight during NCAA tournament games. Its the Marty Schottenheimer playoff disease. Hopefully, Bill will do something fun with the players before a tournament game, to loosen everybody up, like stopping the bus on route and spitting into the river. Hey, it worked before Bill.

Chris Shaw 11 years, 12 months ago

Huh? What did spitting in the Mississippi ever do for KU? Get KU to a Final 4? Or, did it just result in losses to Duke, UNC, Maryland, and Syracuse when it mattered most.

As I was reading your post, I was really hoping you weren't going to bring up the "Mississippi Spitting" and then you.............went down that road. Good Grief! 2008 NCAA Champions!

John Randall 11 years, 12 months ago

The Mississippi River runs through San Antonio ???

Chris Shaw 11 years, 12 months ago

Here's the New AP Poll Top 10

1) Ohio State

2) Kansas

3) Texas

4) Pitt

5) Duke

6) UConn


8) BYU

9) Notre Dame

10) Kentucky

Well, I thought the AP poll punished SDSU too much and didn't punish Duke enough. Other than that I had the exact Top 10 just in a different order from above. Finally, Michigan State exits the poll, however, UNC reappears in the poll (Yuck).

Dan Cook 11 years, 12 months ago

This article is filled with inaccuracy. If anyone knows where to actually place a bet that gives you 30-1 on Texas, 40-1 on SDSU, etc, please let us all know. I assure you there are no sportsbooks in Vegas that have those odds today. Much of what Keegan has told us is outdated from a website that isn't kept current on "future" odds.

As of last week, UT was down to 12-1 (after beating KU) and SDSU was 15-1. For those interested, Kansas was the 3rd betting favorite at 7-1. Ohio State was 4-1 and Duke was 5-1. UK was 10-1. Each sportsbook will have different odds depending on the flow of money, but no chance on earth Texas is 30-1 while Duke is 3-1.

I got Kansas at 13-1 in November at the Wynn. That should be just about the right payoff to cover the party should we win the title.

Chris Shaw 11 years, 12 months ago

As of today my Big 12 Power rankings:

1) Texas: Had a very impressive performance last night against Mizzou. I thought Mizzou would give Texas a better game, but I guess I was fooled again. I keep reading that Texas is in the drivers seat for the Big 12, but I have to disagree. Texas' schedule to end the Big 12 isn't a favorable one and there is still 10 games to play in league. Playing at A&M on Monday night (Revenge Game), Balor twice, at Colorado, at Nebraska, and Kansas State even though terrible at the moment has had Texas' number the last couple of years. Texas still leads the Power rankings, but if they can get through schedule unscathed than that will be very impressive, but i just don't see it happening.

2) Kansas: Anybody who watched "Gameday" last night agasint K-State understands what the Jayhawks have gone through over the last 10 days. Kansas has a favorable schedule over the next 2 weeks before they head to K-State and then another week of Colorado, Okie State and OU which should be manageable until the last two games against A&M and Mizzou. If I had to choose schedules I would take the Jayhawks as they have gotten through a big chunk of theirs already, but @ Nebraska won't be a cakewalk. Mizzou at home I'm not worried about. @ Nebraska, A&M, and the final game @ Mizzou are the toughest 3 games that the Jayhawks have left.

3) A&M: They just laid a dud at Nebraska which proves playing @Nebraska isn't a walk in the park against the best defensive team in the Big 12. A&M will have a short turn around before playing Texas on Monday night. If A&M has any hopes of claiming the Big 12 title it's a must win against the Longhorns.

4) Mizzou: Mizzou at the moment is still the 4th best team in the Big 12, but they have to figure out a way to win on the road. A&M game was heartbreak loss, but besides 2 games against the Jayhawks, they have a very manageable schedule to end conference play and they play middle to the bottom of the conference teams the rest of the way. I expect Mizzou to separate themselves from the rest of the pace from here on out.

5) Baylor: IMO, Baylor still doesn't have a decent win against a quality opponent in conference, but we'll find out soon enough as they play 3 of the Top 6 teams in conference in their next 4 games. They better be ready to play ball. We'll find out pretty quickly whether or not Baylor is the "Pretend" category with K-State.

Chris Shaw 11 years, 12 months ago

6) Nebraska: Nebraska has a brutal 3 game stretch coming up against K-State, Kansas, and Baylor so we'll also find out whether or not they have any NCAA capabilities here pretty quickly. They picked up a much needed win against A&M, but laid an egg against one of the worst teams in the league in Tech. Nebraska could be 4-2 in league instead they are fighting with virtually 7 other teams for that 3rd-9th spot. Separation is going to have to happen sooner or later.

7) Oklahoma: I can't believe I have Oklahoma this high, but all 3 of their losses in Big 12 have come against the Top 5 teams in the Big 12. Oklahoma has also beaten supposedly the worst in the Big 12 in Iowa State and Tech and they beat a pretty decent Colorado squad who was good, but is now realing.

8) Colorado: It's amazing how quickly things can change for a team. After having a great opportunity to be 5-0 in conference before they played the Jayhawks they squandered their road opportunities after being in the top spot of the Power Rankings just about a week and half ago. Now, the Buffs have lost 4 in a row and their schedule doesn't get any easier. I expect them to stay around this area or possibly drop if they can't pick up some much needed road wins. The only problem is that their schedule gets a lot tougher. They pretty much squandered every opportunity for them to place in the Top 6 of conference.

9) Tech: I'm not quite sure how Tech has 3 wins as their only quality win is against Nebraska, but they did make the Top 10 in the conference power rankings. I still think they are the second worst team in the Big 12, but they've had a nice 3 game win streak.

10) K-State: IMO K-State has played the toughest conference schedule so far. They actually have a pretty favorable schedule in their next 9 games. K-State, however, is a disaster at the moment. They do have an opportunity to change their season around, but it's a very small window.

11) Oklahoma State: They have beaten two of the worst teams in the Big 12 at the moment in Iowa State and K-State. Even though they beat K-State head to head, they have lost 5 out of their last 6 and have gotten beaten badly in 4 of those 5 losses.

12) Iowa State: They beat Baylor for their only victory in conference play. They are just bad.

LAJayhawk 11 years, 12 months ago

Ok, so Keegan.... I have no idea when you looked at these odds but they are way, way, way off.

Here are some current odds for you:

Duke 2-1 (can you believe it?? They went up!!) Ohio St 7-2 KU 6-1 Kentucky 8-1 Texas is 12-1... less than half of what you reported of 30-1 Michigan St... holy crap are you off... they are 75-1 not 12-1 KSU 60-1 not 30-1 BYU 50-1 not 60-1

Other odds maker websites have it the same as well.

Stick to what you know, Tom.

JayhawkBigXII 11 years, 12 months ago

Yikes! Keegan exposed! Now what? Apology followed by resignation?

LAJayhawk 11 years, 12 months ago

Wow. That's crazy.

I have to point out though, that I read through a few of the comments and I'm rather disappointed to discover how many KU fans are trolling with negative comments. I would have expected with as much annoyance our posters get from trollers (and, yes, I understand the irony of posting this under ahperse's comment and link), that they would not do the same to other teams... even KSU or that other school to the East.

I honestly expected better. I guess I should be more realistic. That, however, makes me quite sad.

ahpersecoachingexperience 11 years, 12 months ago

Ha! Someone sent the article, I didn't read the comments because it's the Topeka paper and who cares what Topeka people think.

KGphoto 11 years, 12 months ago

It's a Topeka paper. Not a Manhattan paper. I see the comments as about half and half. It may be ugly name calling, but I don't consider it trolling. What surprised me the most were the people wanting him to transfer to KU! Yikes!

LAJayhawk 11 years, 12 months ago

Fair point. And, yeah, I noticed those asking for him to come to KU. Yikes is right. I think I yelled "God, no!" out loud to my computer...

Kye Clark 11 years, 12 months ago

The Cats chances of reaching the NIT just took a hit! I loved seeing the sign on Saturday asking if Pullen would play in the CBI

Jack Wilson 11 years, 12 months ago

Wonder if Martin will end up getting "Manginoed."

Kye Clark 11 years, 12 months ago

Well one has to wonder if he wasn't just riding the coattails of Bob Huggins' recruits. Beasley, Clemente, Pullen, Kelly...all committed to Huggins if I'm not mistaken. Who is the most productive player Martin himself has brought in? Judge was certainly the highest rated, but has he brought in even one viable player that would succeed at an elite level program? I can't think of any.

While I take a certain amount of pleasure in their struggles, I'm with many others in believing that KU needs a consistant rival to step forward to advance our program even further. One could argue Texas has already established themselves as that program, and maybe not having a north & south division will help that rivalry along, but it just seems to fly under the national radar.

Joe Baker 11 years, 12 months ago

Wow! Hmm...what team would love to have a Judge on their roster? What team is in desparate need of a major big that is starving for playing time? What team is heavy with guards? What coach would love to sink his hooks into Wally Judge? What coach is horribly desparate for a Judge? Hmmm...I'm trying to think who in the nation can answer those questions.

LOL- Seriously, some from the article are encouraging him to think about KU. Even though he would sit a year, he would come back his senior as a huge hungry big man on whatever team he lands. I'm predicting uk and their coach will make a play for the Judge. He may even go ACC or possibly Big E, Huggie Bear? Huggie would love to have a Judge!!

I never really saw him fitting KState. I don't know if it was Judge or Martin.

actorman 11 years, 12 months ago

I agree. We like to think of KU fans as being "classy," but unfortunately there are plenty of idiots in Jayhawk Nation, just like everywhere else.

tailg8prty 11 years, 12 months ago

Every year I fill out my brackets I pick Kansas. Even though some years they had flaws I would still put them in the championship game. This year, I'm going a different route. Since most of the people in my pool are Kansas fans, I'm going to pick someone else. What is there to lose? In years past, when KU lost, I lost not only my favorite team but my brackets were in the trash. This year, forgive me, I'm picking someone else. If this is reverse psychology so be it. But one of the reasons why we aren't the favorite is KU doesn't exactly live up to the hype. Some small team steps up and beats us. I will always be fully vested in KU win or lose but it just seems weird things happen to us. Forgive me for picking another team. Although, I see flaws in this team (which I'm sure you people will rip me on) I just think there is one ingredient missing. Probably a huge center (Cole). But he made the right decision for his family so I can't be mad. This is purely a % thing. I love the Morris' and T-Rob but without a true anchor down low kinda bothers me. Plus, I'm afraid TO's and free throws will eventually catch up with us. Don't worry KU folks, I'm with you but I was also able to see the weaknesses in the KC Chiefs when they were 9-0 in 03 and people were calling them awesome. I was belittled for bashing an undefeated team. Please prove me wrong guys. Nothing but love.

jaybate 11 years, 12 months ago

Texas is back to being a good, solid cheap-shotting team, after being a can't-shoot disgrace of a cheap shotting team last season, but they are no where near as good as KU.

KU will kill Texas' next meeting. It will kick their long horns off their heads and into the next time zone the next time KU and Texas meet...hopefully in the conference tourney. Not even close.

With bigs entirely fouled up and with nary a perimeter player playing above average, KU only lost by ten?

You board rats ought to be ashamed of yourselves about genuflecting to Granny Barnes and his burnt orange man bra!

Really, it won't be close.

KU by 15-20.


Because the KU team will be used to the XTReme Cheap Shotting. The first Texas game was their first exposure to true XTReme Cheap Shotting. Every young team has to get clipped by it once, before they realize how hard you have to be against it.

Next time we play, they pay.

Ron Franklin 11 years, 12 months ago

you know i love you my man, but I'm gonna disagree with you on this.

they owned us in our own gym. almost a double digit victory.

the twins were dominated by a freshman & no namer (Hill) in the paint. just as they have been dominated every game this year by a big. even the slow, overweights outplayed them. they are too soft to fight for positioning & they prefer to play outside. because of this, the outcome of any game we play against texas will strictly depend on shot percentage & will have nothing to do with inside toughness.

KU cannot out-tough Texas for a win this year. If it comes down to a possession game, where KU needs to feed it low, or stop a low post move from from a Texas big...I give Texas the advantage all day long. I'd love to be proven wrong but we've seen it over and over again....Arizona, UCLA, Nebraska, & now Texas. Our bigs can't play with other bigs.

If KU is to beat Texas this year it'll be from shooting 40/40/75 and holding UT to below 40%.

JayhawkBigXII 11 years, 12 months ago

Blown, you don't understand. KU will have their numbers and be motivated to achieve. That is what wins games.

Ron Franklin 11 years, 12 months ago

Motivation does not win games.

Preparation & Execution wins games.

I understand completely.

Michael Bratisax 11 years, 12 months ago

Going with BlownJay on this, especially after having watched Texas take apart A&M last night with solid basketball. Not sure what qualifies as XTReme Cheap Shotting but I have no problem seeing XTReme Play Making and XTReme Defense.

The Longhorns' first six Big 12 opponents have managed 54.2 points a game on a combined 36.9 percent shooting, including 20.5 percent on 3s.

Hank Cross 11 years, 12 months ago

It's sad KU is saddled with KSU when it comes to realignment. There's one school in KS that can become a true national university, the other wears purple and belongs in the Mountain West.

YuCoJayHawk 11 years, 12 months ago

I got KU to start the season at 30-1 and then a couple weeks later at 20-1. Those were the two highest odds I have seen on KU to win it all in about 4 years. I got KU at 7-1 when they won it all in 2008. Both bets were on sportsbook so I'll have a nice little payoff when the Jayhawks cut down the nets!!

LAJayhawk 11 years, 12 months ago

30-1??? Seriously?? Wow, I would have thought we'd open at 12 or 13... 15-1 at the worst.

Very surprised at 30-1. If I would have seen that I absolutely would have taken it.

YuCoJayHawk 11 years, 12 months ago

Vegas was taking into consideration the loss of Cole, Xavier, and Sherron, plus Selby's status was in limbo, and at least 10 other teams were getting all the media attention ahead of KU. As far as gambling goes, the Jayhawks and the Chiefs are my two teams, so at the start of each season, I have to place bets on each to win it all regardless of expectations, cuz if I didn't and either team has a magical year, I would be punching myself in the face.

Benjamin Piehler 11 years, 12 months ago

i wish i could bet money that duke wont win it....

ZDKC 11 years, 12 months ago

Basing your article off what you Google searched...interesting stuff (heavy sarcasm implied).

ahpersecoachingexperience 11 years, 12 months ago

just in case anyone hasn't noticed the love fest with Texas and espn has already started. Their upset of ku was the lead story for almost a day, now they are the main story leading aTm by 10, and take a wild guess who is the overall #1 seed in this weeks bracketology?

John Randall 11 years, 12 months ago

This year is as easy as any other to pick the NC.

First team after Mar. 15 to win six.

Jack Wilson 11 years, 12 months ago

I have to agree with BlownJay above .. If anyone is watching the massacre tonight, Texas is the real deal.

BlownJay's point on our bigs vs. other real bigs .. not the pretend kind .. is right on point. Many examples this season. Particularly against the bigger bodies.

Texas plays D, and our offensive limitations are many times exposed against teams that play excellent defense.. see Nebraska.

Can we beat Texas? Sure. Can we beat Texas as we stand? Sure. But I'm not that comfortable with that. I firmly believe that a commitment to being more diverse offensively, taking some chances in the composition of our attack, sacrificing a bit defensively, and moving outside of comfort zones is the only way this team becomes a truly unstoppable force. Until then, excellent defensive teams will take away what we need to score the basketball. We saw what Nebraska did.

Aggressively double in the post, and even further to the wing when the ball hits Marcus' hands. Let TT/Brady have open looks, and have their defenders sag to the threats .. Selby, or Reed on the perimeter. Defending KU is really not a complex task. And it becomes easier when you have solid big men inside, like Texas.

And that is why we need more offensive options on the floor. For example, when TT and Brady are on the floor together, we have one excellent defender, and one good defender. But we have two relatively incompetent offensive players. One is our point guard who can't create and is not a shooter. The other who has gone 50+ minutes in Big 12 play without a point, is shooting poorly, is not one we can even think to rely on offensively. And if Marcus isn't on the floor (fouls or otherwise), with those two out there, points are just tough vs. the top defensive teams. Add in if Selby is having an off night and we are close to pedestrian offensively.

It is not hard to see. Perhaps we don't want to see. It is why we have played so many close games against marginal teams .. some at home. We can be shut down and limited by teams that can play defense. And because we are a defense-first team, we are much more susceptible to the "hot shooter" .. see UCLA.

Moving Selby on the ball is the first step.

Kye Clark 11 years, 12 months ago

I am in agreement that we need to develop Selby as our starting PG now. I've covered this in other posts, maybe once in response to one of your posts. I think Selby being able to create off the dribble is essential to us having a chance to win a National Championship. However, I don't think it is going to happen. I just don't see Self changing things up at this point in the season. He coaches his teams to play with more consistency and likes to improve incrementally once conference play starts. It's a good strategy, and I think more times than not you should have things figured out by conference play. I think this year presents a unique situation with Selby missing the first 9 games and X amount of practices, and that it would be beneficial to deviate from the norm and roll the dice. I can see why maybe he wouldn't want to, that he succeeded having Russell Robinson being somewhat offensively challenged at the PG spot and having more scoring options from the 2 (and 3), and maybe he is trying to replicate that having Tyshawn at the point and Selby at the 2. He may also be afraid to move Tyshawn off the ball, having seen how ineffective he was last year, and that even if Selby improves Tyshawn regressing the situation might be a net loss. My thinking is Selby's skills are not being utilized to their fullest at the 2, and that if you can get Tyshawn to keep his game where it's at moving him off the ball it would be worth the risk to develop Selby's game.

I do disagree with your assertion that we are easy to guard, at least no more than any other team in the country. We are the top FG% shooting team in the country...this many games into the season we haven't just "lucked" into that position. Number 8 in points/game. Number 3 in assists/game. Yeah obviously the numbers are fat from playing some cupcakes in the non-conference, but who hasn't? Our RPI and SOS numbers are high enough to know that we didn't have the Bill Snyder schedule padding our resumes. To your point about playing close games against marginal teams I'll ask again...who hasn't? We're all enamored with Texas right now, here's a bit of their resume - 3 point victory over Rice at home and 17 point loss to USC on the road. Ohio State? A 5 point win @ Iowa, 1 point win @ Northwestern, 4 point win @ Michigan, and a 3 point win at home against Penn State. Seriously, every team has these kind of games on their resumes. It's better to at least find a way to win those games than get trounced by 17 points at USC (or by 22 at home to Seton Hall as Syracuse recently was). And finally I'll address the Texas game in particular. We had them beat and ran out of gas, emotionally. We certainly weren't easy to guard in the first half. It may be a cop out, an excuse...but really it is what it is.

Kye Clark 11 years, 12 months ago

I don't mean to sound like a homer wearing rose-colored glasses. The team still has work to do and room to improve. However, I like where the team is right now. I think they are ready to really hit their stride, and may have been hitting it already and were momentarily derailed by real life tragedy. I expect a fairly dominant run to close out the remainder of the conference schedule. And lastly, I know that we as fans often have a tendency to compare every year's squad to the '08 team. "The '08 team was able to do this", "the Championship team had these pieces", etc. I did it myself speculating about what Self might be thinking in regards to playing Tyshawn at the point. And that's fine, however we all must realize that is not the only way to win a championship. It is what it took that year, at that time. This year's team is not going to be as good on the perimeter as the '08 team. It just won't. The pieces aren't there. Chalmers, RussRob, Rush, and Sherron were a special collection of players we may never see again, especially defensively. This year's team is more talented in the post, and right now I would say our perimeter game is still a work in progress. I'm hoping Selby, whether playing the point or at the 2, becomes a more consistent threat. I hope that Releford returns from his ankle injury ready to help the team. And I hope that this team finally is able to win in Lubbuck tomorrow! Rock Chalk Jayhawk!

ParisHawk 11 years, 12 months ago

ict, your two posts contain so many points I agree with, I just want to add a few things.

First, it's not just Selby: KSU was our first game all season with every player available! Coach Self said he might give Selby some time at the point later on, but Selby's play and other issues may have delayed or nixed that.

Second, comparisons with the '08 team may be interesting but are not "fair" in the sense that those guys had two years to get it together and the current team doesn't even have one full year.

If they do manage to improve and gel in the next month and reach their full potential by March, Self should be Coach of the Year by a wide margin.

Kye Clark 11 years, 12 months ago

Paris - that is an excellent point about the '08 team having two years together to gel. By my estimation you have to go back to the Carmelo Anthony-led Syracuse team in '03 to find a National Champion with a freshman in their starting line-up. Duke last year, North Carolina in '09, KU in '08, Florida in '06 & '07, North Carolina again in '05, and UConn in '04. The '05 UNC team is the only one I remember as having a significant freshman contributor to it's regular rotation (Marvin Williams. Not including Cole Aldrich for the '08 'hawks, while he definitely played a big role against UNC, there were many games where he only played garbage minutes). KU is trying to break that trend needing Selby to become such an impact player, but then again many of the top teams around the country are no different. Texas with Tristan Thompson, Ohio St. with Jared Sullinger...throw in Duke with Kyrie Irving (they have no chance if he doesn't come back).

Hank Cross 11 years, 12 months ago

I've been saying all year that the offense has been the real issue. The twins being shut down + cold shooting by Selby = defeat is a very real scenario. Reed can hit the open 3, but most of his scoring opportunities come when the opposing defense breaks down due to another Jhawk.

OTH it appears to me that KU is playing more transition offense for the past few games. This can only inure to KU's benefit as very few teams have the thoroughbreds that can keep up with them. I definitely agree that its worth a few more TOs by Selby, TT, and EJ, in order to get them ready to play at top speed in March.

tailg8prty 11 years, 12 months ago

I said in an earlier post that we need an anchor down low (Cole Aldrich) and as I said earlier, he made the right decision for his family with the guaranteed contract. It sucks he's playing for something called the Tulsa 66'ers or whatever they are called, but without a presence down low hurts. I think the Morris' and TRob can handle that collectively. Guard play is what is going to kill this team. My brother thinks I'm some spoiled KU fan b/c I complain. If I can understand this stuff with my high school playing days then surely these guys can figure it out. Too many times I've seen guards drive to the hole, or take fast breaks 1 on 2 or build houses with their 3 point bricks. The ball is a very precious thing. Quit the STUPID LAZY ONE ARMED passes that have gone on now for 3 YEARS. Cherish the ROCK. Texas leads the league in scoring yet we lead the nation in FG %. Whats wrong with this picture? Does Texas get that many more shots per game, do we shoot more FT's then them (and make them, ha) or do we just turn it over way to much? I'm so proud of how KU handled TRob's situation and I hope that parlays into fundamentals and getting the job done.

Kye Clark 11 years, 12 months ago

I'm not sure where you got your information, but KU leads Texas in scoring, both overall and solely in conference games. KU is scoring 82.5 ppg on the year, 77.8 ppg in conference. Texas is scoring 76.8 ppg on the year, 72.1 ppg in conference. It is true KU turns the ball over more than Texas, but KU actually has the advantage in turnover margin.

Kye Clark 11 years, 12 months ago

KU fans should all be pleased with Texas garnering such national recognition. The conference needs other marquee programs besides KU, lest we become likened to Memphis during their prominence. K-State was supposed to be that team, at least based on pre-season rankings, but they are falling fast and have yet to hit bottom. I don't think anyone is eager for Misery to achieve any additional success, so Texas is the logical choice. In a perfect world, maybe A&M would be that team, it'd be nice to see Turgeon in that position, but I don't think it's likely to happen. Turgeon doesn't appear to be near the recruiter that Billy Gillispie was. Oklahoma would be the next choice, but their program is still such a mess it might be awhile before that happens.

At any rate, Texas rebounding from their disappointing season last year is a good thing. Even if Rick Barnes never achieves ultimate post-season success, he is a great recruiter and consistently schedules tough non-conference games. Texas is also a major market that can at least pull a share of the east coast biased media's spotlight to the Big 12 (btw, anyone know what the conference will be called next year? If it's out there I must have missed it). With the conference shrinking to 10 teams next year it is important for as many teams as possible to be strong national players (not that losing CU and NU are big hits to our basketball cred, if anything it improves it). Consider the situation in the ACC. The conference has lost so much of its luster, as it's now Duke and everyone else. Or consider the Pac-10. Their flagship program, UCLA, is floundering and the conference is almost an afterthought. While Bill Self has managed to continue to reload thus assuring our conference won't ever sink to those depths, it is good for RPI and prestige to have worthy challengers (which is to say nothing of the fact that it is always better to face tough competition in conference to prepare us for March Madness). Sure it's annoying right now, UT puffing their chests out and acting like they own conference supremacy, but given the state of things the conference definitely needs this.

Brian Powell 11 years, 12 months ago

Tom, interesting topic but I really disagree with your logic on #2 (BYU, best player, etc.). A 'chance', maybe.... but it takes a team to get through the tourney - so the point really is moot.

Texas? We made them look good. We lost to them after the hawks were up til 5am dealing with Trobs' loss. Sure, they're hot right now, but they'll go back to their good-but-not-great form when the averages play out.

When we play there, the team that wins the boards will win the game. It will not be a pretty game. Fouls and FTs will be factor. Both will shoot a lower %

Glad Trob is back -- looking forward to more Travis!

See y'all tom. night,

Joe Ross 11 years, 12 months ago

Temperance, gentlemen!

I wrote a blog with a very unfortunate title "Good News, Bad News for Kansas Basketball" prior to my being aware that Thomas' mother had passed. I thought it was good analysis, but after learning of the death of his mother and how the team was up most of the night supporting Thomas, I not only regretted the title, but much of what I had put forward in the blog itself.

My impression is different now. Had Thomas' mother NOT have passed unexpectedly, I think Kansas would indeed have won that game. They simply did not look sharp and Kansas somehow, someway always responds. Only the didn't against Texas. They simply couldn't. It's perfectly consistent with the observation that they were gassed at the end of the game from having spent so much energy in the first half and not having gotten any (or much) sleep the night before. Not enough in the tank, as it were. Yet when KU HAD the energy in the first half, they showed they were the better team. By this logic, I suspect Kansas would have won the game under normal circumstances. I do NOT think Kansas would win by 15-20 because Texas has made strides and is now squarely within Kansas' class (as a top five team).

Martin Rosenblum 11 years, 12 months ago

Somehow, second-guessing what could or would have been under these circumstances seems a little morbid to me. The game was played, the outcome was the outcome. Your sentence, "..Had Thomas' mother NOT passed..." is a bit insensitive to Thomas. If she had not passed, he would still have a mother, period. Forget what happened in the game or games following this tragedy. To over-analyze the game based on this criteria is just not necessary, in my opinion.

Joe Ross 11 years, 12 months ago

I humbly accept the rebuke and agree that my choice of words was unfortunate. Very well-spoken in your criticism, memhawk!

Ron Franklin 11 years, 12 months ago

JRoss--your point of view is held by many.

Here is what the Hawks did under 'normal circumstances'

At home: beat UCLA by 1 ...........they are now 14-7 beat USC by 2...........they are now 12-10 beat Nebraska by 3....14-5

These are not top teams that KU barely escaped.

Kye Clark 11 years, 12 months ago

I will keep making this point all day long...every team has these type of games on their resume. If you want to bring up USC...yeah KU only beat them by 2, on the other hand Texas only LOST to them by 17. Texas also has a nice 3 point win over Rice. Ohio St. just beat Northwestern by 1 point. Teams don't get up for every game, there are lulls, lesser teams get hot and play above their talent happens. What's better? To "barely escape" USC by 2 points, or to get smoked by them by 17 points?

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