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Random Insight Bowl Observations...

I'm sitting in the airport, my eyes are very...very heavy, and I'm one happy Jayhawk fan.  This isn't really worth a front page posting but I wanted to share a few of my random thoughts regarding the Insight Bowl experience.  Some are football related and some are not but regardless thought they might encourage others to take these events in down the road.

  • Tempe...great place for a bowl.  Everything is right there Mill Street, the stadium, hotels...1 giant New Years eve block party.
  • Kansas travels well....considering the economy and the ups and downs of the season we showed up.  Kansas fans dominated the stadium.  Minnesota had 2 solid sections and a splattering of color, while Kansas fans packed there side.  The upper deck on the Kansas side was convincingly more full and kudos to the students that made the trip...We had a student section, Minnesota didn't.
  • The only drawback to actually going is you sometimes don't realize the magnitude of some of the performances.  Saw the stats for Meier, Reesing and Briscoe and wow am I excited for next year.
  • Rock Chalk Chant was louder than ever...especially at a football game.  Plus I think I heard it ramp up a few times in downtown Tempe.
  • After the game during the awards presentation, there was still a very strong Kansas fan contingent and I'm sure the players appreciate that.  I and many, many others stuck around to watch the ceremony, sing the alma mater and ring in the new year with one final rock chalk chant in a football stadium.
  • A few things looking forward...I love that Coach Mangino brings all of the team to this game.  All the redshirts and many of the walk-ons appeared on the sideline in their jerseys. 
  • On the same lines I was very impressed at how the coaches are constantly teaching.  When the offensive and defensive teams huddled to game plan on the sideline the coaches made sure to have these young guys get involved and listen. 
  • Justin Springer...clearly someone we all hope will be ready to go next year and I think one good sign is he was on the sideline, walking around with only a slight limp.
  • Duane Zlatnik and Tanner Hawkinson look to have bulked up a good deal already, will be interesting after an offseason.
  • Darius Parish...nice job in the goal line stand...there were some fired up coaches with his performance there.
  • If I'm not mistaken James McClinton was on the sideline, in a much, much more active roll than I had seen him earlier in the year...Interesting thought.
  • Kansas takes a very businesslike approach to the bowl games and I doubt with Mangino in the saddle we will ever not show up for a Bowl game.
  • On the similar note, coach Mangino is intense.  Several times throughout the game when something "bad" happened I sat and watched as the coach or player involved attempted to avoid Mangino at all costs. 
  • In case you were wondering Mangino always finds this person.
  • Congrats to the Seniors great way to go out.
  • Offensive line gave up a few sacks but as a whole really seemed to gel in terms of pass protection.  Reesing had a pocket to step up and deliver the ball and we see the results.
  • Notice that most of the guys from RCT top 10 performances got involved yesterday.  Briscoe, Reesing, Meier, O-line(thought they played well), Sharp(decent game while under the weather), James Holt, Johnathan Wilson (TD)
  • Kerry Meier chant was classic.
  • How come Air Force vs. Houston is getting more press than KU vs. Minne???
  • Learned two other things we debated a bit w/Minne fans this week...1. Big 12 offenses are that good...2. Strong Big 10 defenses aren't the reason people think the Big 10 is down. 

I think I could go on and on but I'll wrap it up for now and if I think of anything else or if you all have any questions...throw them in the comments and I'll answer as best I can.  Also anyone else who was there would love to hear you thoughts.  Thanks Seniors, thanks Coaches, thanks players for a fun 2008 season and looking very very forward to 2009.

 

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