Well that sucked. Give credit to the players and coaches in Manhattan, K-State came out and took it to Kansas last night. They were better on both ends of the court throughout most of the game. Every time it looked like Kansas was about to take the lead or build a small lead, somebody from K-State answered. It was usually Marcus Foster hitting a 3, getting to the lane, or finding an open post man following ball screens. The Jayhawks simply couldn't find a way to shut that down when it had to happen. Four separate times in the second half the lead was either cut to one or the Jayhawks inched ahead and every time it was answered with a made three pointer or layup. They did what they needed to do outside of the last minute and a half of regulation.
When panic time did come at the end of regulation, the roles on the night reversed for a short while. Kansas finally started forcing the issue in the game and K-State was the team that lost control. If only that attitude and energy could have carried over into overtime. When the opportunity was there to erase the previous 40 minutes and win the last 5, it still couldn't happen. That's the most disappointing thing to come out of the game, K-State won the energy battle all over the court. They pushed KU's offense away from the basket and played physical down low. There's no finger pointing at any one player, it was a full team effort.
Hopefully the team takes this loss in stride and stays focused on the goals for the season. Continue the path toward #10 and make some noise in March. Winning this game wasn't a preseason goal and losing this game doesn't have much of an impact on those goals. Winning on the road is hard and this is further proof, there are going to be losses on the road.
At least when you lose on the road to K-State, you allow them to be on their mountaintop. So when you see a colleague today that's still riding high on their victory, tell them congratulations on a great season. Hope they enjoyed it and good luck in baseball.
I now have my 2014 Christmas Card picture! #SunflowerShowdown pic.twitter.com/bTB0I50qNy— Kirk H. Schulz (@kstate_pres) February 11, 2014
Even their president admits it. So again, congratulations to K-State. Great season! At Kansas, our goals are a little higher.