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Archive for Thursday, October 29, 2009

Jayhawks tapped No. 1

Kansas hoops clear favorite in USA Today poll

October 29, 2009

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Kansas University’s men’s basketball team remains the popular preseason pick to win the 2010 NCAA championship.

The Sherron Collins/Cole Aldrich-led Jayhawks, who went 27-8, won the Big 12 and reached the Sweet 16 a year ago, have been tapped No. 1 in today’s USA Today/ESPN preseason coaches poll.

The Jayhawks — who this afternoon are expected to garner the No. 1 ranking in the Associated Press poll and have also been named No. 1 by writers from Lindy’s and Athlon magazines, Blue Ribbon Yearbook and many dot.coms — received 27 of 31 first-place votes and 770 points from a national panel of coaches. KU also netted three second-place votes and a third.

Runner-up Michigan State earned three first-place votes and 732 points. Texas was third (676 points), followed by defending champ North Carolina, which had one first-place vote and 653 points.

Kentucky was fifth, followed by Villanova, Purdue, Duke, West Virginia, Butler, Tennessee, California, Washington, UConn, Michigan, Oklahoma, Ohio State, Minnesota, Mississippi State, Georgia Tech, Georgetown, Dayton, Louisville, Clemson and Syracuse.

“It’s a great honor to be No. 1, but we’re in November,” KU junior center Aldrich said. “If you tell me we’ll be No. 1 in April, I’ll be all for it. But it is November and there are a lot of games to be played.”

This marks the third time in the 21-year history of the coaches poll KU has been named preseason No. 1. Other times were before the 1996-97 and 2004-05 seasons.

“I don’t know if we’re deserving of what they say,” KU coach Bill Self said of the 2009-10 Jayhawks, jokingly referring to the pick as “the kiss of death,” in today’s USA Today newspaper.

“The reason we are preseason No. 1 is we had two guys last year who played unbelievable. Cole and Sherron had All-America- type years and we are fortunate enough to have them come back to school this year because they love KU.”

Realistically speaking ... “There are 10 teams, 15 teams by Jan. 1 that have a legitimate shot. There are always teams that come out of nowhere that have a shot,” Self said.

KU today figures to top the AP poll for the second time in school history. AP had the Jayhawks No. 1 before the ’04-05 campaign.

“We could be real good. We have a chance to do some special things, but everything has to fall in the right place,” KU senior Collins said.

For now, KU’s coaches can try to use the No. 1 ranking to the program’s benefit in recruiting.

“It’s good that people see us as the best team in the country. We all know we have a long way to go,” sophomore guard Tyshawn Taylor said. “We all are on the same page. If we work better every day, the better we’ll be in March.”

Ticket info

A limited number of $20 tickets remain for Tuesday’s exhibition opener versus Fort Hays State and the Nov. 10 game vs. Pittsburg State. A limited number of $35 tickets remain for KU’s non-conference games. Fans may buy tickets by calling 1-800-34-HAWKS or logging onto kuathletics.com.

Comments

00000 4 years, 5 months ago

How many times has the pre-season #1 gone on to win the big dance? Since the 1981-82 season, 7 preseason #1s have won the national championship:

1981-82: North Carolina 1989-90: UNLV 1991-92: Duke 1995-96: Kentucky 2003-04: Connecticut 2006-07: Florida 2008-09: North Carolina

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G_E 4 years, 5 months ago

Mel, srj was just quoting the oh-so-classy (rolls eyes) Texas Tech coaches.

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Mel Briscoe 4 years, 5 months ago

"mildcats" does rhyme but i prefer kittycats. makes me think of a cute little kitten wearing a teeny tiny purple tee shirt and brandishing teeny tiny purple and white pompons.

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Mel Briscoe 4 years, 5 months ago

wallace, wow-- i missed that one.

you suck, srj!!!

deep cleansing breath

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Shane Garrett 4 years, 5 months ago

Manhattan is not the land of kittycats, They are known as the mildcats.

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Shane Garrett 4 years, 5 months ago

Hey, Mel, how come srj gets to say Fat little girlfriends without admonishment?

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jonas_opines 4 years, 5 months ago

propector, dunno about the frequency, but it happened last year.

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Steve Jacob 4 years, 5 months ago

To borrow from Mike Leach, as long as the players don't listen to their "fat little girlfriends telling them what they want to hear, which is 'how great you are' and 'how easy its going to be", KU should be fine.

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puddleglum 4 years, 5 months ago

I been in manhattan watching kittycats lead the big 12 north in football. where you been?

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red_devil 4 years, 5 months ago

For those talking about the fight, it's old news and old jokes. Where you been?

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prospector 4 years, 5 months ago

How many times has the pre-season #1 gone on to win the big dance? Does anyone know?

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grammaddy 4 years, 5 months ago

I agree with Maracas, no where to go but down. Seems like we do better when we start at 3 or 4. And we always do great when we're NOT seeded #1 in the tournament.I think being ranked #1 gives them a case of the "big head" and they don't try as hard. Anyway, I'm glad to see hoops season start. ROCK CHALK !!

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Maracas 4 years, 5 months ago

The bad thing about preseason #1 is there is no place to go but down.

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hitme 4 years, 5 months ago

At least we know they're ready to fight this season!

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autie 4 years, 5 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

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Quigly 4 years, 5 months ago

HA! Sure that's great. Now maybe it will come true if you can keep them out of jail.

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