Showing posts with label KU basketball ranking. Show all posts
Showing posts with label KU basketball ranking. Show all posts

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Bill Self Named AP Big 12 Coach of the Year

For the second time in the past four seasons, Bill Self's Kansas Jayhawks were not picked to win the Big 12 in the preseason polls. Both times, KU posted a 14-2 Big 12 record and won the conference outright, and the latest Big 12 title has won Bill Self another AP Big 12 coach of the year award.

Apart from winning a national title in 2008, Self's teams have often come up short in the NCAA Tournament. However, his regular season success at KU is rediculous: KU has now won at least a share of seven straight league titles. Self's teams have a huge advantage at home in legendary Allen Fieldhouse (where the team recently won 69 straight home games), but it is the Jayhawks road success that really seperates KU. In Selthe past seven seasons, Kansas has gone 7-1 on the road in conference play three times (no other team has done it once), and has a 43-13 road record overall. That mark is better than any other Big 12 team's home record except for Texas. Any average coach and average team can be good at home - just look at Missouri this season. It takes a special team and a special coach to consistently win on the road, and that is why Self is once again recognized as the league's best.

The only knock on Self is that he has only been to one Final 4 (where his team did win it all), and that his teams often bow out early in the NCAA Tournament. I think most fans need to give him time to bring in some more serious hardware, and appreciate the league dominance we have seen recently. As long as Self is at KU, no one should pick against the Jayhawks winning the league. It will just make winning awards like these even easier.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Saturday Recap - Kansas Likely to be Ranked Number One

Kansas made a strong win for the number one ranking in the nation with a season sweep of Iowa State. KU beat Iowa State 89-66 in Lawrence, moving to 9-1 in the Big 12 and 24-1 overall. After starting the season ranked seventh, achieving the number one ranking would be another sign that Bill Self has done one of his best coaching jobs with this year's team.

KU has been able to maintain its momentum despite several key injuries, including freshman sensation Josh Selby and key reserve Thomas Robinson. Tyrel Reed and Jeff Withey are also battling nagging injuries but shouldn't miss any time. The key to the Jayhawks' season will be how healthy can Kansas get by March - a full strength KU squad could easily contend for a national title.

KU was in this same position last season, however something feels different about this year's team. Last year, Kansas struggled throughout the year to put away lesser opponents and failed to execute on basketball's different stage. Since the loss to Texas, KU has ran through the league and managed to not miss a beat despite injury problems. When healthy, this team is arguably the best team in the country, but any more injuries could derail KU's campaign for a second national title in the past four seasons.


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