NCAA Basketball

Soft 16: Kansas Jayhawks

Last season, the Jayhawks’ season was cut short just before the finish line by the behemoth that was last year’s Villanova team. There was no one that was going to beat that team. Sadly, that tournament loss marked the end of several important Kansas players who were crucial to their success. They are ranked #1 preseason and to me, they have a whole lot to prove. They will be reliant on the few returning playmakers and a couple transfers which could lead to some chemistry problem. More on that later; let’s break down the #1 team in the nation, Kansas Jayhawks.

Head Coach: Bill Self

Key Returners: Udoka Azibuike, Lagerald Vick

Key Losses: Devonte Graham, Svi Mykhailuk, Malik Newman

Key Additions: Charlie Moore (Cal Transfer), Dedric Lawson and KJ Lawson (Memphis Transfers) and Quintin Grimes

Key Games: Michigan State, Villanova, TCU, @West Virginia, @Kentucky, @Kansas State, @TCU, West Virginia, Kansas State

With all due respect to Bill Self, he is the most overrated coach in D-1 College Basketball. He takes kids with extreme talents who would be one-and-done’s at any other school and keeps them for at least 2 years. Does this mean he is saving college basketball? No. He doesn’t allow his kids to play to their strengths and ruins their draft stocks. There have been some cases where players have been able to make it out, but the vast majority stay for what seems like an eternity *cough Perry Ellis*. I was as surprised as you were not to see him in the list of players above, but I digress. Bill Self has been the Coach at KU for 16 years and he only has one championship from 2008. He has made it to two others: one with Roy Williams’ players and one where he lost to Kentucky (suck it). Somehow he is never in the hot seat discussion. I know a double standard when I see one. He always has a good team, but can never seem to close the deal. I expect the same thing this year. They will be hurting after losing three starters in Mykhailuk, Graham, and Newman. They were able to secure two transfers from Memphis and another from Cal, but that could either go great, or they could have a terrible time meshing their two playing styles and lead to utter chaos. A big issue I see is their bench. Silvio de Sousa is fighting for his eligibility currently. Jayhawk fans better hope he maintains it, otherwise, their big men will be playing a lot of minutes. Yeah, I didn’t say a lot of positive things about the #1 team in the nation. What can I say? I’m a hater.

Predictions: Kansas will most likely go 26-4. I expect meshing issues to get handled pretty quickly, but could be the deciding factor in a few early games. They will win the Big 12 Regular Season because of course and will win the Big 12 Tournament as well. When it comes to the NCAA tournament, it lies solely in the hands of Bill Self. And he doesn’t have what it takes. Hasn’t done it in 10 years and I don’t expect it now. He is very good at making it to the Final 4 however, and that’s where I think their season will end.





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