It wasn't always pretty, it wasn't always easy, but today the Kansas Jayhawks joined an elite group as just the third program in all of college basketball to reach 2000 wins. The landmark victory comes in the quarterfinals of the Big 12 tournament with a 80-68 win over the Texas Tech Red Raiders.
The Jayhawks were tested early and woke up late but their talent and depth ultimately proved too much. With the win the Jayhawks move to the semifinals on Friday where they will square off against either Nebraska or Texas A&M.
a look ahead to tomorrow and more open threads to come soon...
It's not uncommon for the top four seeds in the Big 12 tournament to come out slowly. The teams they are playing are coming off a win the day before, have their legs under them and usually hit the ground running. The important thing in a game like today is stay in control which Kansas did for the most part.
For the Jayhawks it was a fairly balanced performance for the most part. Five players in double figures, 33 trips to the free throw line and a +14 edge in rebounding. Marcus and Markieff Morris combined for 23 points and 14 rebounds at the four spot and Kansas shot 8-16 from three.
At the same time as balanced as Kansas appears this game was still controlled by the undisputed leaders of the team in Cole Aldrich and Sherron Collins. Aldrich dominated the interior to the tune of 12 points and 18 boards. Collins shot 5-8 from the field including 3-5 from behind the arc to add 19 points of his own to go along with 6 assists. Plain and simple this is an improved version of Kansas '08-'09.
Last year the knock on Kansas is they were a two man team. If Sherron and Cole weren't producing it couldn't be done. Now this year there are two or three guys a night giving something to the cause. It wasn't perfect, it wasn't pretty, but when push came to shove there was always an answer. Kansas looked like a team going through the motions at times but down the stretch a 12 point win isn't bad. Perhaps the better news is the Jayhawks remained healthy and it's likely the only other chance for Kansas to play this early in the day will be in the first round of the NCAA tourney. If tat's the case, let's face it, one would have to believe Kansas can sleep walk through a 16 seed.