Saturday, March 06, 2010

Back Where We Belong (#1)

KU conquers Columbia! J'Cuse goes down in flames! The table is set, ladies and gents.

That was quite a feast-or-famine game: 16-0 run for Kansas! 16-4 Mizzou! 16-0 Kansas again! Mostly "feast," though, and those runs were among the most entertaining ball we've played all year. That was a pleasure to watch.

Tyshawn and Tyrel must wish they could play Mizzou every week. In fact, one could say, the up-and-down style of play is "Taylor-made?" Thanks, I'll be here all week.

Reed deserves a bit more pub than he gets (although I see Keegan did give him some love before the game). He seldom scores more than a few baskets per game, but those 3s of his always seem to be lifesavers for KU and/or daggers to opponents. He's shooting a ridiculous 45% from 3.

Slowly but surely, we're getting closer and closer to the 2008 team in terms of balanced production -- we won't ever quite get there since this team doesn't have a Sherron coming off the bench.

It's a strange thing; even though Mizzou has gotten better under Anderson, some of the air seems to have gone out of the rivalry. Maybe now that they actually expect to be in the Dance every year, the single-minded motivation to beat Kansas isn't the same. Or maybe it's just that Self owns Anderson (going back to his UAB days).

(Not that the crowd wasn't still out for blood. Was there really someone wearing a black KKK robe in the crowd to distract our FT shooters? Did I imagine that? Surely I imagined that.)

The Midwest Regional (OKC-St. Louis) is now ours to lose if it wasn't already. The other good thing is, as one commentator was pointing out, the committee should stack the best 2 and 3 seeds in the same bracket with the weak #1 -- Duke, K-State, and say, Ohio State could all be bunched together, leaving our bracket relatively clear.

P.S. It's March, people, and this could be the best KU team ever when all's said and done. I want to see everybody here a-bloggin'. Blog like the wind. As John Oliver says, it's quite literally the least you can do.


  1. Well, I wish I could have caught more of that MU game, but I guess I saw the fun parts. It was frustrating to watch that horrible WV-NOVA game go into overtime, where both teams needed two minutes to score, but that spared me the bigger frustration of watching Kansas go down 17-10.

    Focusing on this week, what do we want to see? I'm looking for a couple of things. More consistent strong games from Cole and Sherron, some comfy margin games (a full 40 minutes of good game), and making it to at least the final game.

    We got that late season loss that I pined for, so I'm not pulling for one now, but I wouldn't be crushed to lose in the Big 12 final. But I'd just as soon win.

    So, the 4th one seed is Duke, right?

  2. Mike DeCourcy of The Sporting News on KU:

    "Kansas completed a 15-1 season in the nation's No. 1 RPI league. Saturday, it won by 21 points on rival Missouri's court. No one can match its six victories against the RPI top 25. What exactly must the Jayhawks do to gain acceptance as extraordinary? Write the sequel to "The Hurt Locker?"

  3. I'm sure Duke would have gotten the #1 anyway, but K-State really screwed the pooch (or f*cked that chicken, or whatever) by losing at home to the Cyclones. WTF, man.

    I was sort of hoping Roy's boyz would shock the world and spoil Duke's party, but the good news is that UNC's now only 1 game ahead of Kansas all-time: 2,000 to 1,999.

    The tourney starts early this year, only two days away (!). We should reach 2,000 on Thursday against CU or Tech, and we'll tie UNC if they lose to Georgia Tech the same day. Friggin' sweet. (Plus, if UNC can't win a game or 2in the ACC tourney they may not even get an NIT bid, so we could really take a commanding lead in the wins race).

    The earlier B12 start does mean that theoretically, even if we make it all the way to the final, losing in the final on Saturday could drop us out of the overall #1 spot depending on what others do, which could mean bye-bye Midwest Regional (though not necessarily).

    Even in the worse-case scenario -- if we get upset on Thursday -- I don't see any way we lose a #1 seed, but it could possibly knock us down to weakest overall #1 if Duke wins out; so in summary, let's not lose Thursday.

    Also, just found out that our parents have tix to the final game in Indy! Here's hoping the 'Hawks are there too.

  4. This comment has been removed by the author.

  5. A great piece from SI on this year's dominant, enigmatic team:

    "Self calls timeout. He looks at his players. What does he see? Well, he sees something close to the ideal college basketball team. He sees Sherron Collins, a tough-as-calculus senior point guard. He sees Cole Aldrich, a smart big man who can dominate on both ends of the floor. He sees Xavier Henry, a sweet-shooting freshman. He sees the Morris twins, Marcus (6'8") and Markieff (6'9"). He sees the fastest guy on the floor, Tyshawn Taylor, and 24-year-old redshirt junior Brady Morningstar....

    What else does he see? "I know we're tough," Self says. "I know we're talented. But...."

    But ... Self cannot find the words to follow the conjunction. There is just something puzzling about this team."

  6. Comparing Self and Williams, there's some nteresting statistical minutae:

    "Both coaches had the exact same record in their sixth season (27-8). Additionally, they both lost in the sweet sixteen – both to a Big 10 school – both by five points. It was the 29th victory for both Purdue and Michigan State. Kansas ended #13 in the 1994 poll and #14 in the 2009 poll… Kennedy’s secretary was named Lincoln and Lincoln’s secretary was named Kennedy…"

    And Sherron on the Conference Tourney:

    “I don’t think it will change the seeding,” Collins said, “but we might as well finish it off the way we started.”

    That sounds right. Doesn't make much difference, but we might as well.

  7. I see that Deron's plea to pick up the pace on blogging has been met with a revealing silence.

    Personally, I don't really care.

    But don't piss off the groom.

  8. Well, not silence. Don't sell yourself short, CR.

    But it is a neverending mystery why I can't get more than one or two of you posting at the same time. It's like you go in shifts or something.

    Blog traffic should pick up Thursday and from then on. If it doesn't, then I'll be worried.

    Don't make Groomzilla angry!