Archive for Friday, January 20, 2012

Altered anthem bothers Bill Self

‘Home of Chiefs’ chant not ‘honoring your country’

Many fans turned out to watch Kansas women's game against Kansas State on Saturday, Jan. 7, 2012 at Allen Fieldhouse. The Jayhawks fell to the Wildcats, 63-57.

Many fans turned out to watch Kansas women's game against Kansas State on Saturday, Jan. 7, 2012 at Allen Fieldhouse. The Jayhawks fell to the Wildcats, 63-57.

January 20, 2012


For some inexplicable reason, the words “Home of the Chiefs” instead of “Home of the Brave” emanate from Kansas University’s student section at the conclusion of the “Star-Spangled Banner” before KU basketball games in Allen Fieldhouse.

Ninth-year KU coach Bill Self hopes that peculiar rendition of the national anthem will end as soon as the next home game — Monday versus Texas A&M.;

“I kept asking my wife, ‘What are they saying?’’’ said Self, informed by wife, Cindy, that some of the students mimic fans at Arrowhead Stadium — the true Home of the Chiefs — while singing the anthem.

“I said, ‘I didn’t know they were saying that. I couldn’t tell.’ I don’t think that’s good. I don’t think it’s anything we should be proud about as students to carry that on, because I don’t see the place for it when you are honoring your country,” Self added.

Nobody knows exactly when it started, but some of the KU students in the end zones have been chanting “Home of the Chiefs” several seasons now. Some of them perform the “tomahawk chop” when singing those words.

Of course, many students do not take part in the altering of the song.

“That’s one tradition that in my opinion certainly we could do without,” Self said. “I think it’d be more respectful toward the anthem and what that stands for to go ahead and use the actual words to it than putting in their own. I think they should stick to Francis Scott Key’s words. I think that would be more appropriate.”

Anniversary coming: KU’s game against Texas on Saturday (3 p.m., Erwin Center, Austin, Texas) will be played on the one-year anniversary of the death of Thomas Robinson’s mother, Lisa.

“This weekend I’m sure will be emotional for him,” Self said. “You look at the similarities — one-year anniversary, playing Texas, there’s a lot of things.”

The Jayhawks learned of Lisa’s death in the late-evening hours last Jan. 21, the night before KU’s 74-63 loss to the Longhorns — a loss that snapped KU’s school-record 69-game homecourt win streak. The players and several of the players’ mothers consoled Robinson all night/morning long up until game time.

Robinson won’t be asked to re-live the memories publicly this week.

“You guys (media) aren’t going to talk to him between now and then (Saturday). I don’t think that’s fair to him to have to go through that,” Self said. “I am so amazed at how well he’s done. He has a lot of support around him. He’d probably be the first to say that. Still, he’s playing with a smile on his face. He seems like a happy kid, but he’s carrying a much bigger burden than anybody else is carrying at his age for the most part.”

KU’s entire team attended Lisa’s funeral service on Jan. 27, 2011, in Washington, D.C.

“I was so proud of our administration (and) the NCAA for allowing us to do some things. She may have not had a funeral (had KU not been able to pay). Things you take for granted, buying a casket, things like that,” Self said.

“That was a prime example of a group of guys actually becoming a family. It was cool to watch. I think it’s hard to become a family unless you go through a crisis-type situation. That was a crisis-type situation. To see how everybody responded to that ... at the same time, nobody felt sorry for anybody. They wanted to be coached.

“I asked them (players) ... ‘Do you want to talk about anything other than Thomas’ situation and how we all feel about it, because we can do that or do we want to talk about that and (also) try to get better?’ They said, ‘Coach, we’ve got to do both. The world doesn’t stop. You have to keep moving.’

“I think they handled that extremely well. That’s a tribute to our players and our fans. They made Thomas feel like he had family here. I don’t think there’s many places in America ... they would try, but I’m not sure many actually could get it done like KU people did.”

Self has said one of the reasons Robinson is doing so well is that his sister, Jayla, is thriving in Washington, D.C. She lives with her father, James Paris.

KU senior Tyshawn Taylor said he’s seen no change in Robinson with the anniversary approaching.

“He’s a soldier. He’s handled it well and I think will continue to hold up,” Taylor said. “He handled it better than a lot of people I know, definitely better than I would.

“We are there for him,” Taylor added. “If he does break down, we will be there. He hasn’t mentioned it. He hasn’t seemed any different. We’re fine.”

Root canal: Self apologized for slurring his words a bit at his weekly news conference. He had a root canal Thursday morning right before his media session.

Tough place to play: Louisville coach Rick Pitino says Allen Fieldhouse is the most “overpowering” arena in the country.

“Now, I have not taken a team to Duke. There really is not any place I’ve entered where it’s, ‘God, that’s just incredible, what an advantage that is,’’’ Pitino said in an article Thursday on “I don’t think the Joyce is any more difficult than any other place, to be honest with you,” Pitino added, asked about Notre Dame’s Joyce Center. “The only place I’ve found (is Allen) and that could’ve been I was playing with four walk-ons and lost by 50 points, so maybe that was the reason I felt that way.”

KU pounded Pitino’s Kentucky Wildcats, 150-95, on Dec. 9, 1989, in Allen.


Larry Evans 6 years, 2 months ago

Students listen too much to the liberal professors who don't have their heads screwed on correctly. Hats off to Bill Self for bringing this up.

TopJayhawk 6 years, 2 months ago

Absolutley. The students these days don't really care about tradition, respect.
All they care about is themselves.

Many people stay in school as it provides structure to their lives. Much the same way a mental hospital does.

It is true that some of our most educated folks are also some of our most crazy.

TopJayhawk 6 years, 2 months ago

I should say "I believe this to be true, based on yrs of experience.

Progressive_Kansan 6 years, 2 months ago

What do liberal professors have to do with some kids changing the words of a song? "And before we end class students I would just like to remind you that I hate this country so much, you know because I'm like a liberal professor and stuff, when you sing the National Anthem say home of the Chiefs instead of home of the brave." Derp. Nope I'm not buying it. Try again.

pea 6 years, 2 months ago

Liberal professors? You should've slept on that one.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 6 years, 2 months ago

Your comments are typically pretty ill-informed, but this one tops them all.

Why would anyone who's so influenced by "liberal professors" choose the words "home of the Chiefs" if they're going to change the words of the National Anthem?

(That was a rhetorical question, since I don't really think a rational response is possible.)

KEITHMILES05 6 years, 2 months ago

I am glad Self has spoken and if these people continue to not respect the song AND him then I hope they get beat down.

Clint Church 6 years, 2 months ago

Coach, you might also have your players put their hand over their hearts and face the flag like they are suppose to.

stevieboy 6 years, 2 months ago

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

gsxr600 6 years, 2 months ago

It's sad too that most people don't know all the words to the song yet they know when to sing "home of the Chiefs".

Richard Heckler 6 years, 2 months ago

Apparently this only coming from the students who must practice democracy somehow.

Never noticed = little public impact = I say change it to "Home of the Jayhawks". That's fixed.

Is KU becoming much like China and Russia?

I would rather have coach self come out with his money and build miles and miles of new hike and bike paths throughout our fair city thus promoting healthy outdoor activity. Include work out equipment along the way.

I have would rather have Coach Self come out as a spokesperson for Clean non toxic employment that pays no less than $17.50 an hour.

Flap Doodle 6 years, 2 months ago

"...Clean non toxic employment that pays no less than $17.50 an hour..." That's an oddly specific figure. How did you arrive at that?

jaywalker 6 years, 2 months ago


You need some fresh air.

jaywalker 6 years, 2 months ago

Sorry cheese, that advice was for merrill.

imastinker 6 years, 2 months ago

Home of the Jayhawks is equally insulting. I would rather them stop doing the national anthem than change the words.

Hooligan_016 6 years, 2 months ago

I would rather stop singing the national anthem altogether at sporting events ...

Mandie Eutsler 6 years, 2 months ago

Must be a little redundant for MLB players. Every Day!

lvlndhawk 6 years, 2 months ago

As a veteran, I resent this insult to our country's national anthem. As a combat veteran, I don't recall the phrase "home of the brave" applying only to the Illiterate, right-wing citizens of our country!

mae 6 years, 2 months ago

disregard merrill, he's a troll.

I applaud coach for this. It has no place in the fieldhouse, whether missouri based or not, it is not american. I grew up with the pledge every morning and a flag in every classroom. It makes me sick to see that people all the way up to elected officials are not proud to be American but they will send us to fight overseas.

mae 6 years, 2 months ago

Coach, bring in the military for a game to sing it. That would make national news and send a message to every university out there that there are americans here.

JackMcKee 6 years, 2 months ago

And they wonder why they can't find jobs.

drnater 6 years, 2 months ago

As an American, I'm offended their first amendment isnt allowed to be exercised. I guess that makes sense though, considering the Bill of Rights is all but dead in America anyways.....

thebigspoon 6 years, 2 months ago

You know, your post makes no sense. Perhaps the kids have the first amendment right to change the words of the anthem, but so does Self have the right to complain about it. And, in all honesty, do you believe that it's OK for them to change the words? Right or not, the issue isn't what they can do but what should be done. I'm no raving patriot, but I do know that the National Anthem means something, something magical that doesn't exist in many nations, something of which we have been proud for over two centuries, and these kids have no conception that changing the words denies the very basis of the founding of our nation. Find another song to butcher, guys. Bet you wouldn't alter the KU anthem, would you?

drnater 6 years, 2 months ago

Well then maybe you should go state that to all the fans that fill Arrowhead on Sundays. Bet you get booed out within 5 seconds. After all, we learn from our elders....

thebigspoon 6 years, 2 months ago

Oh, my, your sharp rejoinder has caused me to shiver dreadfully. Of course, the fans at the Chiefs game do it so it's OK. Damn, where was my brain? And, kid, I probably am your elder, and I do NOT have any respect for the changing of the song of our nation and I do NOT have any respect for your ravings about first amendment rights and I do NOT have any respect for any reason you might give for the changing of the song. Yes, I will fight to the death for your right to say any stupid thing you want, but I will NOT countenance or forgive the changing of the song for something as trivial as a pro football team, which, by the way, isn't even very good, no matter how much I root for them year after year.

drnater 6 years, 2 months ago

First off, you called me a kid. Something I havent been in a long time. Second, your "probably" my elder? Somebody seems a little confused. You don't have to have respect for me, I never asked for it. I just don't understand the blind faith for a song that represents a country that could all but care less about its people. Then to raise such a fuss about it. Say what you want about the team, but the fans are loyal. Something the American Government has struggled to be towards its own citizens.

pea 6 years, 2 months ago

Help me understand. You're dissatisfied with the Gov't and are on a crusade to discount the national anthem in protest? Or are you just not that big on ceremony and tradition? The song itself unpleasing to you? To each his own, first amendment and all but the song represents what you and I both want for the country and honors the many who have fought and died for her. It's in poor taste to sh*t all over it.

drnater 6 years, 2 months ago

Actually, its none of the above. I just dont understand why its a big deal. Considering the many Chiefs that died so we could have that home of the "brave." This is a two way street, its unamerican to change the lyrics, yet its American to slaughter countless people to take over a country. Bat a blind eye, but the song itself shows whats right and wrong with America.

drnater 6 years, 2 months ago

Ever heard of the Patriot Act? The Defense Authorization Bill? Enough said....

drnater 6 years, 2 months ago

So are you admitting im right? This is far too much fun to just stop now!

persevering_gal 6 years, 2 months ago

I think we've gotten off track, but if you don't like the way our country is ran, then move elsewhere or write your Senator. If it weren't for war (which I am opposed to unless absolutely necessary), then I can guarantee you that you would not be able to voice your opinion with your computer. As far as not caring about our country, I suggest you stop relying strictly on media and take a good look at what your country has provided you. I know there are MANY flaws & corrupt politicians, but wow! We are one spoiled country compared to many others! I think you may need a refresher on our founding history & then you may understand where Self and many others are coming from.

drnater 6 years, 2 months ago

Plain and simple, without the slaughtering of "Chiefs," we wouldnt be able to celebrate the "brave." Im not confused on our American History. Other people are naive and negligent of it. If you want to be offended by something, check out human trafficking. It happens a lot closer to home than you want to believe. As for this, I'll continue to use my freedoms as long as I can, and continue to say "home of the Chiefs" at whatever sporting event I so choose! Rock Chalk!!!!

TopJayhawk 6 years, 2 months ago

You must be a young one. Your brain isn't totally connected and wired up yet. You sound like a lot of stupid people I knew back in the sixties.

Bob Forer 6 years, 2 months ago

What really irritates me is that the kids aren't doing it to exercise any deeply felt constitutional rights of free expression. In my humble opinion, they do it because they think they're being cute. Nothing worse than a bunch of smart ass young kids who think they're clever.

drnater 6 years, 2 months ago

What qualifies you to call them morons? Odds on end Francis Scott Key would be offended? Who CARES!!!!! The government doesnt care about the people, the people are pissed at the government. Yet, we want to complain about words being changed on a song? Blame Christina Aguilera!!!

drnater 6 years, 2 months ago

Obviously you read that comment wrong. It was a question, as in an open ended question. Nobody, can answer that, that was the point!

jonas_opines 6 years, 2 months ago

"What qualifies you to call them morons?"

Our opinion does. if you don't like it, then you're also free to carry on, as evidenced by your behavior.

Which qualifies me to call you a whiner. Which qualifies you to call me a jerk. So, by all means, feel free.

classclown 6 years, 2 months ago

K U as well as Lawrence have always been such a "me too" community that when they saw people at Arrowhead doing it they needed to do it as well. No doubt many of them see themselves as somehow "sticking it to the man".

Stupid is as stupid does.

For a place of higher education, K U and it's students are very low class.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 6 years, 2 months ago

"No doubt many of them see themselves as somehow "sticking it to the man"."

Huh? That makes no sense. If that was their intent, they'd have chosen some other replacement phrase.

drnater 6 years, 2 months ago

Or maybe its because the current students at KU are majority Chiefs fans, and seeing as KU students parents tend to be fairly wealthy (and from Johnson County) they as students go to a lot of Chiefs games growing up.

Orwell 6 years, 2 months ago

Many of them, however, know the difference between the correct personal possessive pronoun "its" and the contraction you used incorrectly. I think that would qualify as "stupid does."

classclown 6 years, 2 months ago

You folks leave merril alone. It's obvious his post is not a copy and paste. He's not used to saying something original.

CardHawkFan 6 years, 2 months ago

I hated the chant as a student and I hate it even more now that I work for KU. Glad coach finally said something about it. Besides, the Chiefs stink. Why would you want to insult KU by even associating it with them? Don't know for sure, but I have a hunch that KSU or MU (other people who might consider themselves Chiefs' fans) don't do it at their games. When I am watching the Jayhawks attempt to win at Memorial Stadium or rock Allen Fieldhouse, the last thing I want to think about is the Chiefs. Good news is that it has faded and isn't as bad as it used to be. Hopefully it will be filtered out altogether in the not to distant future.

frank mcguinness 6 years, 2 months ago

How successful has that saying been for the Chiefs? Maybe they should give it up too.

Richard Heckler 6 years, 2 months ago

The fact that there is no copy and paste available on this matter represents the low impact value of the alteration to the anthem.

Now that this behavior is being glorified it will likely spread like wildfire as some may not accept anyone from KU dictating their right to express themselves. Next thing on the table will be legislation dictating punishment such as fines and imprisonment = very communist like.

Absolutely Coach Self has every right to express himself which he has done. Let's not take this matter to any extremes after all this is a democracy in America. The students are in no way less patriotic or any less American.

frank mcguinness 6 years, 2 months ago

Merrill, I normally agree with you but right now I say you GTFO with your blathering.

CHEEZIT 6 years, 2 months ago

Coach! Pick up the PA right before the song and tell the kids to sing it right. I bet they would comply!!!

CHEEZIT 6 years, 2 months ago

That was a recorded message I believe which was pretty much worthless! If the guy stands there in front of the crowd and says it It would probably turn out different!

drnater 6 years, 2 months ago

400 lb man saying stop, 200 lb man saying stop..... IMHO I dont think it'll make a difference, by saying stop your just gonna fuel more people.

CHEEZIT 6 years, 2 months ago

Yes but Magino was on the video board. Bill would be standing right there in front of every one and peer pressure more relevant. Bill is also more revered than Gino was except for the one season!

Shane Garrett 6 years, 2 months ago

Many fans turned out to watch Kansas’ game against Kansas State on Saturday, Jan. 7, 2012 at Allen Fieldhouse. The Jayhawks fell to the Wildcats, 63-57. Really?! No one else read the printing under the photo?

Shane Garrett 6 years, 2 months ago

Oh, it was the woman's basketball team on Jan 7th. my bad.

Terry Sexton 6 years, 2 months ago

Now that's funny, Wally! Because I am perfect, I can laugh at you. Go Chiefs! (but not during the anthem)

Terry Sexton 6 years, 2 months ago

ok, so my perfection was s'posed to have posted here, not up there.

Terry Sexton 6 years, 2 months ago

aw, crap. going away now. you;re welcome.

JackMcKee 6 years, 2 months ago

Is Merrill doing a parody of himself?

drnater 6 years, 2 months ago

I wonder if people were this up in arms when Hendrix played his rendition of the SSB with his guitar sounding like explosions at Woodstock..... Give me an F!!!! oh wait, wrong song. lmao

pea 6 years, 2 months ago

Some were. But Hendrix served (albeit briefly) and his was poignant social commentary and (arguably) artistically valuable given the historical context. Apples and oranges. Giggling "Home of the Chiefs" doesn't really compare.

drnater 6 years, 2 months ago

I realize this, I just dont understand why people are so up in arms about it. I feel like im in a room full of people who watch Faux News and I am the only one actually being fair and balanced. lmao

Mandie Eutsler 6 years, 2 months ago

I get what you mean, not that I completely agree. It is unbelievably stupid to insert "chief's" at a sporting event not involving chiefs. Completely different sport, and not the same mascot. Dumb, dumb, dumb. I don't think it's a huge deal at arrowhead stadium, really. I can see how some think it's disrespectful when nearly 90,000 drunk people are excited about their team and say it. The only reason you are being attacked this way is because, (it's ok you can admit it) it is stupid to do it at a Jayhawks game.

Flap Doodle 6 years, 2 months ago

"merrill (anonymous) says… The fact that there is no copy and paste available on this matter represents the low impact value of the alteration to the anthem." The shark has been jumped.

DGL 6 years, 2 months ago

I realize there are a lot of generational differences for acceptable behavior. However, there are some things that should NEVER change: you stand up when the National Anthem plays, stop talking and moving, you remove your hat and place it over your heart (or place your hand there if not wearing a hat), and you don't attempt to inject humor into what is supposed to be a a humbling and inspiring song about the our Nation's independence. You have the entire game for jackassery...the National Anthem is not the time.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 6 years, 2 months ago

So if I carry a boom box around with me with a recording of the National Anthem, does that mean that any time I choose to play it, every one has to behave precisely as you demand?

What if I put it on endless repeat?

DGL 6 years, 2 months ago

Do you put on a suit and tie when you see a funeral on tv because that's appropriate attire? Of course not. Ditto.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 6 years, 2 months ago

Of course I don't do that. But you're the one demanding a purely pavlovian response to the playing of a song.

Martin Shupert 6 years, 2 months ago

Wow! Blaming this on liberal professors? Now there's a stretch I never thought of! The kids were just playing around. Big deal. First of all, Bill, honoring our National Anthem is fine, but the kids didn't do anything horrible. Put this in perspective. Francis Scott Key didn't write the music. His words were put to the tune of a bar song. Yes, it's true, a professor taught me that decades ago. Was he liberal? Well, maybe... a more accurate phrase would be "well informed". Another thing to consider here, playing the National Anthem before every sporting event can do this to people. It trivializes the song and its importance. Has anyone watched the Chicago Blackhawks rendition of the Anthem? You-Tube that one. You'll be amazed. Is it sacreligious? Not in my opinion. I view the Anthem as a song of celebration. It was never meant to be sung as if you were in church! Come on Bill. I get why you have this reaction, but look at it this way: We are the home of the free more than the home of anything else. Everyone should be able to sing what they enjoy... except maybe "Fire!" and a few other words that George Carlin covered quite thoroughly. The perplexing thing for me is, Why on earth would Jayhawk fans WANT to adopt any tradition from the Chiefs? Until they right their ship, I'm hoping we stick to KU's WINNING traditions.

drnater 6 years, 2 months ago

Well you could go with the stretch that both KU fball and the Chiefs are going the "Patriot" way... Or you could just say they're doing things like Bill Parcells, but people forget thats who most of these "Patriot" way people learned it from.

fancy80 6 years, 2 months ago

I'm with coach (again) on this. it is "Home of the Brave". Also as a side note...the Rock Chalk chant is supposed to be a low haunting chant. no woos, but slow and haunting. the first time I heard it, live, it gave me goosebumps. Now, it is nice, but meh....sorry, just saying....

Evan Ridenour 6 years, 2 months ago

This is not about disrespecting the anthem, this is not about free speech. The reason why this needs to stop is because it is stupid. These students are shouting out a team's name in an arena that is the wrong team, from an entirely different sport, from a different state, that has sucked for their entire lives.

They look like idiots... and by doing it they make the rest of us look like idiots.

TopJayhawk 6 years, 2 months ago

Yes it is stupid, completely dumb, not clever, not origianal. AND disrespectful

Now tell me again about the collective intelligence of our educated ones?

Stupid is as stupid does.

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