Archive for Tuesday, May 19, 2009

KU still lagging in Big 12

The Kansas University women’s softball team practices at Arrocha Ballpark on Monday while, across campus, university and athletics officials met with the public to discuss a plan to build an “Olympic Village” sports complex at KU.

The Kansas University women’s softball team practices at Arrocha Ballpark on Monday while, across campus, university and athletics officials met with the public to discuss a plan to build an “Olympic Village” sports complex at KU.

May 19, 2009


Clang. That’s the sound of the gate slamming shut on another Big 12 Conference sports season.

The hay is in the barn. The standings are complete. And once again Kansas University’s overall ranking is uninspiring from a competitive standpoint.

Sure, KU won the men’s basketball championship again, but Bill Self’s team was in rarefied air compared to the other sports. Take a guess about the second-highest finish by the Jayhawks against the rest of the league.

It’s fifth place.

Actually, KU rowing wound up in third place at the Big 12 Championships, but that was in a field of three. And Kansas’ women’s swimming and diving team was fourth in a field of six.

KU’s fifth-place finishers were baseball and women’s golf and, on paper anyway, the golfers were better because they competed against a full boat, whereas only 10 league schools have baseball.

It’s worth noting it hasn’t been that long that women’s golf was a league doormat, so the fifth-place finish was impressive. At the same time, I’m not bagging on baseball. This is the first time in coach Ritch Price’s seven seasons that the Jayhawks have posted a plus-.500 league record.

What about football? The Jayhawks were 8-5 overall and pummeled Minnesota, 42-21, in the Insight Bowl. No doubt the Jayhawks finished strong, stunning Missouri in the regular-season finale, but six other schools had a better conference record than KU’s 4-4.

So for record-keeping purposes, KU was first in men’s basketball, fifth in baseball and seventh in football. Kansas has only three other men’s sports, and they’re all track-related — cross country, indoor track and outdoor track — and they were, to put it euphemistically, undistinguished.

In fact, the wheels fell off in men’s track, with the Jayhawks finishing 11th at the Big 12 Indoor and 12th at the league outdoor meet last weekend in Lubbock, Texas. Men’s cross country posted an eighth place in last fall’s conference championships.

Kansas has almost twice as many women’s sports at the varsity level: 11.

As mentioned, rowing — which held its first league-sanctioned championship this spring — was third, swimming was fourth in the conference meet and golf fifth. Otherwise, no KU women’s sport earned a standing higher than the sevenths notched by basketball, soccer and tennis.

Eight-place placers were cross country and volleyball. Ninths went to softball and indoor track. Alone in 10th was outdoor track.

You could say basketball’s seventh place was deceptive because of the way coach Bonnie Henrickson’s team made that stirring run through the WNIT before falling in the championship game to South Florida. But the WNIT is not the NCAA, and KU hasn’t qualified for the NCAA Tournament since 2000.

Summarizing, not a single one of the 10 KU women’s teams came close to capturing a conference championship and, except for basketball, it was the same for the Kansas men.

Still, it’s no secret the whole is not equal to the sum of its parts when it comes to the perception of Kansas University athletics. Football and men’s basketball always will be in the spotlight, and right now everyone likes what they see.


possibleusername 9 years, 1 month ago

hey chuck, are you going to have any response to the basically unanimous disgust over saturday's tasteless punklike article? i didn't read the article above, but it's worth having all your articles ignored and all your comment sections hijacked until you wake up and publicly state just how petty, classless and wrong you are.

Rickyonealku 9 years, 1 month ago

hey chuck, I agree with possibleusername now my question to you Mr. Chuck Woodling is WHY DO YOU STILL HAVE A JOB with the after your Wayman Tisdale article???

CLARKKENT 9 years, 1 month ago


raoulduke 9 years, 1 month ago

I love Kansas sports as much as anyone. Long live KU roundball dominance, but the reality is the overall athletic program's success is not reflective of $weet Lou's salary. He is not needed to continue the long and storied hoops tradition.

beawolf 9 years, 1 month ago

Lou's job is revenue generation and, like it or not, he's done a fairly good job.

eck74 9 years, 1 month ago

Why are you ragging on the KU Athletic Program? Did someone there recently die of cancer?

Jhawk85 9 years, 1 month ago

At least we know who you really are....Ya...your a coward. Didn't read your atricle......Nor will I ever read anything else you write. Retire old man!

gogoplata 9 years, 1 month ago

For the majority of fans Football and Basketball are what is important. Who really cares about the sports other than Football and Mens Basketball. The players, the parents, and a small number of fans. I would bet that more people attend Lawrence High and Freestate football and basketball games than all the other KU sports combined. I would like to see the Football team start winning the Big 12 north and competing for the Big 12 championship. As a fan I am content with being good at just Football and Basketball.

MattBabler 9 years, 1 month ago

I can't find Chuck's article on Tisdale. Was it pulled? Am I missing it?

Commenting has been disabled for this item.