Kansas Jayhawks: Time to Focus on the Postseason


The good thing for Kansas Jayhawks’ fans is there is always a postseason.

The Big 12 Champions fell at Oklahoma Saturday, 75-73, playing without starters Cliff Alexander and Perry Ellis, as well as top 3-point threat Brannen Greene.

More from Kansas Jayhawks Basketball

They were one box out away from heading to overtime, but instead finished the regular season 24-7 and 13-5 in the Big 12.

Now though, as KU has done every year for the past 26, they will be heading to the NCAA Tournament, but not before Thursday’s quarterfinal game of the Big 12 Tournament in Kansas City.

Kansas will get the winner of K-State/TCU, which should mean a trip to the semifinals is all but ensured.

Yes, the Wildcats beat the Jayhawks in Manhattan this year, but are 0-9 all-time in the Big 12 Tournament against Kansas.

TCU is serviceable at home, but against KU, 45 miles from its campus, the Horned Frogs have no chance.

Friday is when it starts to get tricky for the Jayhawks.

A match-up with either Iowa St., Baylor, or West Virginia looms. KU was 4-2 against the trio, but could have easily be 2-4 as Baylor was just a few possessions away from beating the Jayhawks twice.

Whichever teams they don’t play in the semis, they could see in the finals should they advance that far.

Which means a 10th tournament title for the Jayhawks would most likely mean beating K-State for a second time, then knocking off two teams between Baylor, Iowa St. and West Virginia.

That is no easy task, but make no mistake the Jayhawks are still the best team, and the favorite, especially playing in the friendly confines of the Spring Center.

The media could look at this KU team and say seven losses is too much to take them seriously as national title contenders, and they could be correct.

However, despite a rough start (losing by 25-plus twice in the non-con season), and the most conference losses in the Self era, the Jayhawks still just played a game that meant nothing in the standings, and they nearly won without three key contributors.

That’s the life of a Jayhawk fan.

No matter how tough the going gets, Kansas wins the Big 12.

It was as nice feeling knowing that, heading in to the match-up with the Sooners, but the loss was still frustrating.

Head coach Bill Self shouldn’t have trouble finding things to work on in practice (boxing out, holding on to the ball, and not trying to save a ball going out of bounds, cough, cough, Kelly Oubre), but they still head to KC as the one seed.

That’s something that rarely changes year in and year out.

The ride home from Norman might not be fun for the Jayhawks, but the sadness ends when they return to Lawrence.

They’ve got some work to do.

Next: Kansas Jayhawks: Four Unbelievable Facts from the Bill Self Era

More from Through the Phog