Kansas Athletics (and presumably Missouri “Athletics”) announced a six-game set between the two men’s basketball programs to begin next season (2020-21). The first and last matchups will occur in Kansas City at Sprint Center, and the two schools will alternate home games in between.
That pretty much sums up my thoughts on the subject.
Here is the official statement from KU.
Jeff Long is quoted as saying that KU Athletics has “quietly sought input from fans and supporters” regarding renewing the series, and that “we believe the overriding sentiments are that this historic rivalry should resume.”
I just fail to see how this benefits Kansas. At all. KU basketball would make the same amount of money regardless of the opponent, so it’s not that. It’s not a competition issue, as the matchup doesn’t improve KU’s RPI or non-conference schedule (MU average KP rank of 101 over the past six years). It’s not going to affect KU’s recruiting any. And if either side cared about tradition and rivalry, Missouri never would have left the Big 12 (or Kansas would have kept the series going regardless).
However, all of those things benefit Missouri. Missouri will make more money by adding a premium non-conference game. Missouri’s schedule will improve. Missouri could see a recruiting bump. Missouri gets their game against Kansas AND their SEC football money.
And does Kansas get? A watered down version of what used to be a great rivalry that has turned toxic (on both sides). It’s not fun anymore, especially if you live in the KC area.
Tell me what the benefit is for Kansas. The ONLY way KU should have agreed to this was if every single game was played in Allen Fieldhouse, and even then I still wouldn’t like it.
So once again, congratulations to Missouri. You have now officially won the Border (Cold) War. You get all you’ve wanted since 2012, and Kansas gets bupkis.
Enjoy your six Super Bowls, Tiger fans.
Now someone get me a Fire Jeff Long hashtag.