2012 NCAA Tournament Bracket: Kansas The No. 2 In The Midwest

KANSAS CITY, MO - MARCH 09: Head coach Bill Self of the Kansas Jayhawks reacts during the second half against the Baylor Bears during the semifinals of the 2012 Big 12 Men's Basketball Tournament at Sprint Center on March 9, 2012 in Kansas City, Missouri. The Bears defeated the Jayhawks 81 to 72. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

Kansas had an outside shot at a no. 1 seed heading into selection Sunday but the loss to Baylor in the Big 12 semifinals proved too much to overcome. The good news for the Jayhawks is that they will be staying in the Midwest.

The path to the Final Four for Kansas will go through Omaha and St. Louis which means the Jayhawks won't have to travel far from home and the overall the draw is challenging but still manageable.

First round opponent Detroit has an athletic team with some high level talent. A potential rematch with Georgetown, the no. 3, looms down the line. Kansas also has several bubble teams and mid majors on the list of potential stumbling blocks. Of course if everyone plays to seed heading into the Elite Eight, top seed North Carolina has a little bit of a connection the Jayhawks sitting on the sidelines.

All in all March Madness is unpredictable, exciting, frustrating and a roller coaster of emotions. To make it to the Final Four and to win a title, you have to beat good teams. The debate will continue, but this was a year where Kansas overcame a lot, won a Big 12 championship, secured a two seed and has a very real shot at a Final Four. As a fan, that seems like a pretty fortunate storyline in a 'down year'.

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