Dear Kansas fans,
Upon us now is potentially the greatest non-March sports weekend ever to bless us. Sunday, as everybody knows, is the annual four-hour commercial fair, which concludes with the essentially arbitrary crowning of a pro football world champion. Sandwiched around this bowl are two other sporting events which, in my estimation, promise to be much more Super than Oakland vs. Tampa Bay. Forget about those professional football players who only play for their huge, multi-million dollar contract bonuses. I'd much rather watch these young men play for. well, their future multi-million dollar contract bonuses.
The first game, of course, is Kansas vs. Arizona at Allen Fieldhouse. Every serious college basketball fan in the country has had this game circled since the schedule was released. The top two preseason teams in the country meet each other in an otherwise peaceful small town, reminiscent of the Army of Virginia and the Army of the Potomac converging on Gettysburg, Pennsylvania in 1863. The Union army wore blue. Kansas wears blue. Coincidence? I think not.
What? Arizona wears blue, too? Crap. Scratch that theory. In the two-year history of KU's current home winning streak, they have not faced a team at #1 in the polls in Lawrence. Let the fireworks begin.
Should Kansas defeat Arizona, and if Pittsburgh chokes and loses to Georgetown on Saturday, the Jayhawks could potentially face a second newly-crowned #1, Texas, on January 27 in the Forrest "Phog" Allen Fieldhouse (I'm knocking Duke below Texas for nearly losing to UNC. Otherwise they'll have to lose to NC State or Georgia Tech). These two nationally-televised games could prove to the world that Kansas is just as good, if not better, than they were last year when they marched through Georgia (my last civil war reference, I promise) to the final four. These games could also be a disaster of a magnitude far greater than the Madison Square Garden debacle in the NIT. Losing on a home court, regardless of the competition, would be damaging to national respect and, much more importantly, team morale. The sense of invincibility that can be observed by attending games in Lawrence is amazing and invaluable. With that in mind, I have a few requests for those of you who sold your souls to get tickets to these games.
Request #1: Stand up! This is how we show our support in Kansas. If the people behind you don't like it, tell them to scoot back. All the way to Missouri.
Request #2: Do not leave the game early, even if the Jayhawks have 150 points, an eighty point lead, and all of their starters over 30 points. Why would you go to the trouble of going to the game if you're not going to stick around for the Rock Chalk chant? And how do you know Christian Moody isn't going to post his first career triple-double?
Corollary: If you must leave the game early (i.e. you just got a call from your wife/girlfriend/mother/president/pope telling you that the four horsemen of the apocalypse have risen and are chilling out in your living room and drinking your beer), do NOT walk by the student section at either end of the court. If you fail to heed this advice, you will be heckled without mercy. Consider yourself warned.
Request #3: Cheer your heart out for Roy. Ever wonder why the student section is the only part of the whole stadium to get free T-shirts from Roy? We show him the love. Right now, Roy could be living in a state where isn't never too cold and coaching some of the most talented underclassmen in the country. Instead, he's here on Mount Oread, where we have school even when there are seven inches of snow on the ground. Please feel free to participate in the chanting. It's not too complicated. It goes "ROY! ROY! ROY!" and takes place whenever he enters or exits the court area.
Request #4 (extra credit): Do not cheer for Lute Olsen. Even if you admire almost everything about the man - I know I do - he is not welcome in OUR house. Well, at least not on January 25. However, I won't be booing for him or his team. But let's go ahead and boo for Texas.
Kirk Hinrich's Elf Children