For Kansas coach Bill Self, it’s hard to imagine that pundits where talking like his team was a long shot to win the conference they’ve dominated for so long. However, that’s the spot Kansas (22-4, 10-3) was in at the end of January, but thanks to the gelling of the team, as well as stumbles by Oklahoma and West Virginia, the two main threats to Kansas’ throne and now it’s seems as if another Jayhawks conference title is almost a sure bet.
The turnaround has been as swift and stunning as the improvement of this particular Kansas team, which punctuated its resurgence with a huge road win at Oklahoma last week. Now, as they travel to Kansas State, they do so with their reign over the Big 12 showing few signs of relenting any time soon.
“Well, I don't know that it's turned totally in our favor, but we're in such a better shape than we were two or three weeks ago. So to answer your question, yes, last (Wednesday) night (Oklahoma being beaten by Texas Tech) was, at least on the surface, a positive thing for our chances,” Self said at his weekly press conference, Thursday. “But still, we have the hardest schedule left, and so I'm not going to put too much stock in it. As fast as it's turned the last two weeks, it can flip it and go the other way even faster with our schedule.
Self is guarded though. His team has and continues to shows flaws and is nowhere near as deep as his other teams during his tenure. With games coming up at Baylor following tonight’s game at K-State, at Texas, the week after, as well as a visit from Iowa State at the end of the regular season, the tables could dramatically turn again if they’re not careful.
“We're in a much more favorable position than we were before, but certainly it could be a situation where we could certainly fall behind real fast because of the two games we have coming up in the next -- over, what is that, a 72-hour period, that will determine as much as anything else,” Self said.