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Winning Attitude / by Bill Woodard
Certainly, Mangino's largely inexperienced, young squad shocked a lot of folks this year, and in my eyes, at least, nobody was more emblematic of the Jayhawks' turnabout from last season's 2-10, winless-in-the-Big 12 group than red-shirt freshman Charles Gordon. Gordon exemplified the kind of commitment it takes from your star athletes--and yes, I think he definitely qualifies as a star now--if you're going to take a program from sad to successful. Guarantee you, Mangino wants every player in his program to compete with Gordon's ability, athleticism and, most of all, heart. He'll sign as many kids like that as he can.
How Sweet It Was / by Chris Wristen
Bolstered by the "Remember Rasmussen" battle cry, the Jayhawks avenged their teammate's season-ending injury by ending the Tigers' season on their home pitch, 2-0, and advanced to the Sweet 16. "When you think of how many teams make it this far, there's only 16 in the country," Caroline Smith said. "That's not very many."
Redemption / by Julie Jamison
For the second year in a row, the Kansas volleyball team and fans gathered to watch the ESPN selection show. Once again, the regular season ended in tears. Last year it was tears of frustration, confusion, and anger – but this time these tears were ones of relief and joy. For the first time in the history of the program the KU Volleyball team would be traveling to the NCAA Tournament.
Recruiting: Self Scores Big / by Eric Bossi
Headlining the group is the rugged and talented Alexander "Sasha" Kaun, a bruising 6-11 center from Melbourne (FL) Air Academy. A native of Siberia, Kaun erupted on the national scene from virtual obscurity with a series of inspired and jaw dropping performances during the spring of 2003. A top 25 prospect nationally who should challenge for All-America honors on the high school level, Kaun chose Kansas over Duke. His signing served notice to the basketball world that Kansas can and will recruit the East Coast under the new regime.
Recruiting analyst Rob Harrington of PrepStars.com feels the Jayhawks got just what they were looking for in a big man. "In an age when a lot of big guys prefer to stand on the perimeter and fire up jumpers, Kaun is a refreshing throwback to the tough, post-oriented centers of the past. Most likely, he'll end up popping some of these Kevin Garnett wannabees in the nose as he spins and dunks," said Harrington.
Jersey in the Rafters / by Bill Woodard
If you wanted hard-nosed, if you wanted floor burns, if you wanted bruising but breathtaking basketball, you found all of that and then some one November night at rock-em, sock-em Allen Fieldhouse. In what easily rated as the most-anticipated match-up of the young college hoops season, fourth-ranked Michigan State and fifth-ranked Kansas didn't disappoint. Everybody who played--and perhaps a few who were merely close to the physical action--needed ice, ibuprofen and a good night's sleep. It was a big-time game, a big-time atmosphere, and the Jayhawks' big-time win earned big-time kudos.
In the end, it was Kansas sleeping well and Michigan State tossing and turning after the Jayhawks jolted the Spartans, 81-74, before a raucous crowd of 16,300 that included 19 NBA scouts and former standout Nick Collison, whose jersey was retired at halftime
Dream Fulfilled / by Chris Wristen<
Rivalry games approaching for Jankovich
From Wildcat to Jayhawk / by Brian Hanni
Benson Chesang didn't start out with dreams of crimson and blue. He just wanted to run.
Downtown Kaylee Brown / by Brian Hanni
Shooting her way to success.
Every month of Jayhawk Illustrated includes My View from the Press Box with journalist Tom Hedrick and Inside the Phog with columnist Bill Woodard. Look for Jayhawk Trivia and This Month in History
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