Seven on my mind

There are two possibilities. Coach Bill Self knows how to maintain a poker face. Or he honestly does not know yet what his starting line up will look like for the season opener on Friday.

Clearly Keith Langford, Wayne Simien, and Aaron Miles will be at center court for tip off. But who else?

"Either Michael or Jeff will probably start and then inside we have three guys that I consider starters. I don't know how we will go on Friday but of the seven guys I have in mind, five will start."

Lee or Hawkins. David or Jeff. Stick with the bullets or draw for a flush. Decisions, decisions.

Either way, Coach Self seems to recognize the staked have been raised slightly with the regular season just 48 hours away. Still, he is not letting the hype or the pressure get to him. It is still just another game.

"This is the opener and although EA Sports was great I anticipate a different feel when I walk into Allen Fieldhouse on Friday. What I have been trying to do is be the best wherever I have been. I haven't worked the last 18+ years just to get to this point," said Self.

"I think that this is the start of a new era and one that I am in charge of. I am sure there will be some butterflies about taking over and being looked at as the captain of the ship."

"There are a lot of things going on here when it comes to success. I really haven't thought about the 30-game home winning streak but it is a very nice streak and I hope it continues -- it needs to continue. We are going to have to play well for that to occur."

The Jayhawks are used to playing well. Kansas is looking to win its 31st straight home-opener and record 12 wins out of their last 13 season-opening games. A victory would keep the Jayhawks undefeated against the Southern Conference.

While Coach Self continues to talk up improvement and confidence and hard work, he is not ready to lavish the team with praise just yet.

"I really think the guys are coming along pretty well. I think that they are really starting to understand what we want to accomplish and what our goals are. It doesn't mean we are going to play well but we are going to get much closer."

Just how close?

"Chattanooga can score and they are good. They are really well coached and can stretch the defense. They play fast and we haven't been a great transition defense yet -- this will be a test for us."

It is a test anxious Jayhawk fans will be eagerly watching from the Fieldhouse, bar stools, and living room couches across the country. The season debut is always an event, with the new leadership intensifying the excitement.

And that you can bet on.


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