Editorial: Outstanding run
The KU basketball team has added another chapter to an amazing streak of Big 12 conference success.
It’s true that Kansas University basketball fans always expect their team to be good, but that doesn’t mean they don’t appreciate what it takes to win 12 consecutive regular-season championships in the Big 12 conference.
Coach Bill Self is well aware of the streak, which now is second only to the 13-year streak of UCLA, but he sees each championship as the unique achievement of a single team. Each one of the last 12 years, a different Jayhawk team has won its own championship, its own part of the legacy.
Each year had its own challenges. Some years, the Jayhawks had more than one player who would be a lottery pick in the NBA draft; some years they had none. They played against teams led by the likes of Blake Griffin and Kevin Durant, but at the end of each season, they were at the top of the heap. A few years they had to share the title with another team, but most years they stood alone.
Someday, the streak will end, but no team wants that to happen on its watch. It’s a lot of pressure, but also a big motivator.
The four seniors who will play their last game in Allen Fieldhouse on Saturday — Perry Ellis, Jamari Traylor, Hunter Mickelson and Evan Manning — will leave KU with the streak intact. They also will leave with college degrees and a bright future ahead of them in basketball or some other endeavor.
As the regular season ends at Allen Fieldhouse Saturday, we hope fans will show their appreciation not only to the seniors but to the entire team and their coaches for prolonging the Big 12 championship run. We also hope the Jayhawks’ season is far from over and they will have much success in the Big 12 and NCAA championship tournaments.
Congratulations to the Jayhawks. We’ll be rooting for you.