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For me, this schedule was probably a bit too aggressive. If Kansas ends up making a final four run (or making a surprise run to the title game like in 2012 when they had a tough schedule) then this kind of schedule will be validated, but with a team as young as this one I think it was probably a bit too aggressive, especially with the number of road and neutral court games.
Kansas had 13 non-conference games this year. I think ideally when making a schedule, it would be nice to have 2 or 3 cupcakes, 2 games against tough competition, a tournament somewhere so guys can get used to playing back to back days (obviously they play back to back days in AAU ball, but college and AAU are much different) and then the rest of the schedule be against mid major teams. The thing Self has done so well as a scheduler is at gaming the RPI: he (usually) schedules a bunch of mid majors who are definitely good, but not good enough to beat Kansas. In terms of win probability, the difference between playing the 98th ranked team and the 200th ranked team isn't much, but it makes a huge difference in their RPI and thus their seeding in March.
@RockChalkTalk Chances of the supposed one-n-dones staying a 2nd season. Wiggins? Embiid? Selden?— Bradley Hope (@Brad_Hope) January 22, 2014
I think that's probably the right order in terms of ranking them from least to most likely to come back. I'm not even exaggerating when I say I can't see a scenario in which Wiggins comes back next year. Even if the NBA disbanded for a year I think he'd end up playing in Europe or the D League or something.
Embiid, we've all heard the stories. He's studying the big men and found that staying in school helps, he's not sure he's ready because he can't drive, yadda yadda. He's going to be the #1 pick. He's gone. Unlike some guys I can see why he'd come back, because his family has the money and it probably would be easier to learn a post game in college vs. the NBA, but I don't see how he can turn down that money. Plus even if he tanks, being a top 2 pick ensures that you get second chance after second chance after second chance (see: Michael Beasley)
I think Selden will be back. Draft Express has him at 21 to OKC (sidenote: as an OKC fan, sign me up) but I think at outside the lottery, Selden has to come back next year. Next year's draft is much weaker than this one, and I think he's almost definitely a lottery pick next year.
@RockChalkTalk which non-KU B12 team in the last 9 years most deserved a shared or outright title that didn't get one?— Dr. Lee O'Spacejam (@RockChalkChief) January 22, 2014
Right away, I think the two that jump out are 2009 Oklahoma and 2007 Texas A&M (which is weird, because for the longest time, Texas was the prime challenger). Most people, I'm sure, are going to pick Oklahoma because Blake Griffin was out for Kansas's trip to Norman, but I'm taking A&M. Kansas was awesome that year, and finished 5th in the KenPom rankings, but A&M was also a very good team, and they won in Allen Fieldhouse. Remember back in those days the North and South teams played only once, so presumably A&M was going to have the unfair plight of losing at Kansas and then not getting a shot at them at their place. If not for a double OT loss to Texas on the second to last game of the conference slate, Texas A&M would have won the league (though not outright) and been the #1 seed.
Sidenote to that: Texas Tech, coached by Bobby Knight, won 9 games in the league that year, and they went undefeated against Kansas and A&M. Wild.