Kansas Jayhawks: Shocking Match-up Looms in the Round of 32


If the Kansas Jayhawks play the Wichita State Shockers in the second round, you might as well shut down the state.

And don’t think Manhattan isn’t interested just because Kansas State isn’t playing. In fact, it might as well be the Wildcats playing KU as far as K-State fans are concerned.

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Jayhawk Head Coach Bill Self has repeatedly said it doesn’t make sense for him to schedule the mid-major program.

And he’s right.

Any game between the two, no matter how good of a record the Shocks have, will be a lose-lose situation for Kansas — or at least a lose-barely win one.

But that doesn’t mean it wouldn’t be fun for everyone else.

WSU fans are salivating at the chance to knock off the mighty Jayhawks (although it wouldn’t be the first time), and who else, outside of Lawrence, wouldn’t want to see the 11-time Big 12 Conference champions come crashing to the ground, via David?

Feb 4, 2015; Peoria, IL, USA; Wichita State Shockers head coach Gregg Marshall gestures from the sidelines during the game against the Bradley Braves at Carver Arena. The Shockers won 62-59. Mandatory Credit: Mike Granse-USA TODAY Sports

Head Coach Gregg Marshall has been on record saying he would love to play the Jayhawks — that his team should play the Jayhawks — and apparently the NCAA Selection Committee agrees.

Of course the New Mexico State Aggies and Indiana Hoosiers may have something to say about it.

Their opponents, Kansas and WSU respectively, will have to get by them in the first round (sorry, not saying round of 64), for the Kansas Klash to happen.

It most likely won’t be easy for either sunflower squad.

The only thing the Jayhawks make look easy is an opponent’s offensive rebound, and the Hoosiers, who have made the third-most threes of any NCAA Tournament team, could make life difficult for Marshall and his crew.

Both schools should be playing with confidence.

Kansas is Kansas, and Wichita State has won 63 of its past 68 games.

If they can play composed basketball for 40 minutes, as opposed to the 20 minutes the Jayhawks usually like to play, both teams can meet Sunday in Omaha for the first time since the 1992-93 season when Kansas won by 49 points in Allen Fieldhouse.

You think there might be more than a few WSU fans ready for a re-match?

It could be perfecting timing.

Kansas won its 11th straight Big 12 Title, but they did so literally limping across the season’s finish line with Perry Ellis, their leading scorer and rebounder, injured, and their prize freshman Cliff Alexander logging as many minutes the past six games as the poor sap writing this article.

The Shockers rolled through the Missouri Valley Conference again, falling just once in 18 games, and most likely have not lost the sour taste in their mouths from an early tournament exit last season.

If there are basketball gods, and they want to entertain the college basketball world, they’ll let the Jayhawks and Shockers emerge from their round one games victorious, generating media hype for the state only rivaled by a big storm that dropped a house on some evil lady.

If, and when, it happens, college basketball fans will be watching with bated breath.

Let’s just hope for the fans, and TV execs everywhere, it’s worth it.

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

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