Pause and Play

  • I always get nervous when our guys have time off from games. It seems like they should be getting rest and also polishing their game. So it would seem like when they play next they should be playing a bump up in performance.

    Is it just me… but I always think we go backwards from time off. Even one week creates rust.

    Personally, I don’t care if we bow out of game 1 in the conference tourney… but I’m thinking about March Madness.

    Anyone else nervous?

  • @drgnslayr I’m nervous, but I don’t know if it’s about the time-off issue.

    We’ve been consistently inconsistent this year - that’s what worries me. We’ve played really well at times and totally in a coma at others. We’ve seen times of great intensity from the team and other times where it looks like they’d rather be playing video games or about anything else besides basketball.

    In December, you always hear the TV announcers say “That’s a team you won’t want to play in March”. I don’t think we’ve really achieved that. We’re as apt to play stupid and lose now as we were in December. I know we’ve had some injuries and other team issues, but so has everyone else in the country. The teams that are going to love March are the teams that have shown constant improvement over the past 4 months.

    If they can just FOCUS for a while, I think we’ll do OK.

  • @nuleafjhawk

    I feel exactly as you do… but I wonder if we aren’t just too overly critical. We notice other teams play mostly when they play good, so we think they are consistent. We notice every single play our team makes, so we often focus in on the down stuff.

    If I’m not mistaken, we have a better record than we had last year at this time, and we’ve even played a harder schedule. Results is what we really care about. But we haven’t been building a streak at the end, and that raises my concerns.

    I still think we will do fine in the first week of MM. I think we are tough enough to take the punch of teams on the level we will face. After that, the road gets tougher and will be hard to predict.

    With young teams, this time off business is frightening. Given time to “think” too much could put these guys in a coma state.

  • I’m not nervous about this team because I don’t expect anything from them anymore. I think two tournament wins is their ceiling, but wouldn’t be surprised if they didn’t make it out of the first weekend.

    An Elite Eight appearance would be total gravy and I’d be proud of that achievement for them.

    To make the Final Four, it would take something we simply haven’t seen this team do all season–play 4 good games (and win them) in a row. I don’t think they’ve played 4 good halves in a row this year. But who knows, everything might finally click and they might surprise us. But I’m certainly not nervous thinking and hoping its going to happen…

  • @KUinLA

    We really don’t know how some of our newbies will perform (or veterans) in the big dance.

    I’m thinking a lot about Kelly. He seems to like the limelight. His game has skyrocketed… at times. Will we see him make his next leap up in performance during the MM? Or will he vanish?

    I can’t even guess about it. Too unknown, but it seems he could go in either direction.

    If we get a healthy Perry back and he continues his uptick… and if Kelly upticks… maybe the team builds some confidence and synergy?

    Granted… it is a crap shoot. I’m keeping my money in my pocket.

    Just hoping for the best, not only to see us go further, but to see more Jayhawk games!

  • @drgnslayr Sure I’d like to see more KU games too, but that’s a lot of ‘ifs’. I don’t see any reason to expect anything different from this team (or coach) than we’ve seen in the last 10 games, which certainly doesn’t look like Final Four basketball.

  • @KUinLA

    Yep… there remains plenty of “ifs”… that is the magnetic part that keeps me watching. If our first game was with Emporia State, not sure I’d even watch.

  • @drgnslayr I like the idea of the under dog role …and he is even wearing our new uniform…

  • @ KUinLA You summed up the spectrum of what this team’s track record could predict in the BigDance. 1st weekend exit, vs winning 4 in-a-row by whatever luck Phog can blow our way. We just don’t know.

    Regarding the original poster’s nervousness. Lets see what the coaching staff does with the scouting report of the opponents, and if our guys can stay FOCUSED, just as nuleaf said above.

    I was shocked to see Self ditch his Off.Rbnds rule vs IowaSt in AFH, and he beat the Mayor in that “run-off” (by our rebounders). And interestingly, Hoiberg had no counter tactic… This team will need more from Self than just letting them “grinder” out a W on their own. Too Jekyll-hyde to do it on their own. Letting them “labor” is entirely different than letting the 08Champs labor-out a W against somebody on one of their poor offensive nights.

  • @nuleafjhawk said:

    In December, you always hear the TV announcers say “That’s a team you won’t want to play in March”. I don’t think we’ve really achieved that.

    You nailed it right there. If they were sticklers for accuracy, announcers would say, “Now there’s a KU team you wouldn’t want to play in March—IF Perry Ellis gets 20 and 10, the post-by-committee position gets a double-double, the team shoot 20+ threes and the entire perimeter plays hungry.”

    There are a lot of loose wheels on this particular Jayhawk wagon.

  • I’d love to see Bill Self pull out all the stops and create an unorthodox new game plan for every team the Hawks face in the tourney. I agree with other posters that Bad Ball is too risky for a one-and-out tournament.

    Like @ralster noted, Self’s capable of getting outside the box to neutralize an opponent’s strength. This team is so young that I’d like him to bend or break his own reliance on tough, grinding post-first ball. Break out some new schemes, shoot more threes and keep each opposing team guessing.

  • Here’s what I get nervous for: What these players have to endure after a season-ending loss. You know that will happen to 67 out of 68 teams, but it becomes much more poignant for the 1- and 2-seeds, due to heavy expectations.

    We are supposed to be a knowledgeable fan base. Passionate fans. Royalty school expectations. But this year we don’t have the KY-roster. I am worried about fan backlash on guys like Perry Ellis missing a falling-sideways layup. I was saddened by the flak that seemed to center on EJ after the overall team-fail vs. Michigan. Just as disheartening as the flak the Twins (by association, Markieff specifically) and Tyrel Reed took for VCU. Disheartened by the flak Sherron (an NCwinning Jayhawk) took after his final game playing hurt (UNI).

    So, yes, Im nervous how our young team with up&down pieces will perform in Tourney play. They got a chance, we’ll see.

    And yes, Im nervous how our fans will support vs blast-&-rationalize our own guys in those k.a.n.s.a.s. jerseys if we lose in Tourney play. We got a chance to improve on our own recent performances & reactions, we’ll see. Wont we?

  • @nuleafjhawk

    VERY insightful post! Caught me off guard cuz I was expecting some @nuleafjhawk trademark humor!

  • @drgnslayr Yah I am nervous, very nervous for The Madness. I just dont see us losing game one of the conference tourney no matter who it is. Game two? Yah sure. The second game of the NCAA’s? To me it depends on who is at least 90% healed, who is dialed it and how Coach lets his guys play. Thats an awful lot of what ifs. I just dont know.
    That said, I am still very excited to see them play and hopeful that they can get past the first weekend.

    No matter what. I am a proud Jayhawk fan, always will be. And, there is Always next season.

  • @nuleafjhawk @drgnslayr Yes, KU has been consistently inconsistent this year. Can they put together a 6 game run? Dunno. That term above reminds me of a term we use in Cardiology for an abnormal heart beat. Atrial Fibrillation or AFib for short. The heart rhythm is literally irregularly irregular.
    SO, this team is now dubbed the Afib team of '15

  • @drgnslayr

    “Personally, I don’t care if we bow out of game 1 in the conference tourney… but I’m thinking about March Madness.”

    Even if this means we go into the dance with a 3-4 record in our last 7 games? I really think this team needs to capture some momentum in the league tourney.

  • @wissoxfan83 I agree. Winning the Big 12 tournament would give us momentum. I think that would help more than the extra rest we would get by bowing out early. Of course, Perry needs to get healthy at all costs…

  • @KUinLA said:

    To make the Final Four, it would take something we simply haven’t seen this team do all season–play 4 good games (and win them) in a row. I don’t think they’ve played 4 good halves in a row this year.

    Our formula for success is to play one good half and one half ugly. Many a time have we wrecked a second half so neither team played well with our bad ball© technique… We’ve even shown that – sometimes – we can win with two wrecked halves, which is a pretty impressive feat.

    Asking for two good halves in a row is just plain greedy… 🙂

  • Well. We have been busy beating each other up in the Conference play. It is hard to measure how good is the B12 at this moment. I will say that if 4 out of 7 (projected) B12 Team survive the 1st week. As the B12 Champion, we should have a pretty good chance to survive at least 1 of the 2 games in the following week.

  • @bskeet I’m sure you’re joking, but why should we have to play ‘bad ball’ (still don’t know --or care-- what that means) when we have 4 MD’s All Americans on the team? I got a kick out of the announcers during the Oklahoma game when they said ‘I kinda feel sorry for Kansas tonight–they only have 2 MD’s All Americans on the floor.’ Are we really becoming an ‘in joke’ for the college basketball talking heads?

  • @wissoxfan83

    I think our guys are sick of banging bodies with other B12 teams… especially for the 3rd time.

    The guys will be relieved to play someone else!

    Hopefully enough to stomp some arse to keep going in the tourney!

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