For the first time since the 1999 and 2000 seasons, the Kansas State football team capped its season with back-to-back bowl game wins after beating UCLA in the Cactus Bowl on Dec. 26.
But for all the hopes that were raised for this season after beating Texas A&M last year in Houston, and the projections to follow for 2018 after KSU’s victory in Phoenix, there’s a far bigger question that looms as covered in this story. Link to story at KCUR.org
While the Kansas Jayhawks approach the Big 12 Conference season they’ll try to end an ongoing struggle against Pac-12 teams that continues from last season.
The Jayhawks (9-2) can break their three-game losing streak against Pac-12 teams when they play Stanford (6-6) in Sacramento for a neutral site game in Pac-12 territory.
The streak started with the heartbreaking Elite Eight game against Oregon last season when the Jayhawks were expected to use the Sprint Center venue in Kansas City to its advantage and gain a Final Four berth in Glendale, AZ. Then KU’s struggles against Pac-12 teams spilled over to this season with back-to-back losses.
Arizona State ranked sixth in the Pac- 12 preseason poll, but has been on a crash course to the top, is undefeated with another notable Big 12 win against Kansas State. Breaking the top-5 in the most recent AP poll, the Sun Devils have a group of explosive guards who easily scored over 20-points apiece against Kansas, and sit pretty going into conference play.
With the conference season around the corner, Kansas could use anything positive going forward. And it seems like the focus is to make adjustments with the current lineup. Seven guys get regular playing time right now with pending additions of Billy Preston and Silvio De Sousa. Arizona St. transfer Sam Cunliffe could also make his third appearance of the year against Stanford.
The Jayhawks jumped to a ten-point lead against ASU, and looked like they were going to wash out the bad taste left over from the loss to Washington. Coach Bill Self said, “I thought we were really good, probably the best we’ve played all year the first three or four minutes.”
ASU battled and eventually took the lead during a 15-0 run with about 14:30 left in the second half. From there the Jayhawks looked deflated.
“Our defense was as bad as it was against Washington there in the second half after we got a little bit tired,” Self said.
Perhaps the Kansas City Royals Hall of Fame executive board needs to be re-assessed. Curt Nelson of the Royals Hall of Fame seems to be the only one who appreciates the roots of the success in the Royals franchise. Sid Bordman, a former sportswriter for The Kansas City Star, wrote stories about the Royals from the team’s inception in 1968 and well past the first game in franchise history in 1969. But he has never been asked to be a part of the committee that considers those from the Royals’ early days. Consequently, some of the important early figures in the history of the Royals go unrecognized.
On the baseball diamond, the 88th All-Star game will be played with no World Series home field advantage on the line for the first time since 2002. So what’s really going on amid the All-Star break festivities in Miami? Most likely, a lot of text messages between GMs all over baseball and the Kansas City Royals are no exception. The non-waiver trading deadline is just around the corner.
Though the University of Florida is in search of its first national title in baseball, the Gators are playing in the best-of-three title series at the College World Series for their third time. Southeastern Conference foe LSU is no stranger to baseball championships as the NCAA’s team of the 90s. The Tigers, however, are playing in their first title series since 2009.
All in all, these two teams wear familiar colors at the College World Series while the teams located closer to Omaha struggle to get that far. Iowa and Nebraska made the 64-team bracket, but each failed to get past the first weekend. The most notable natives of either Iowa or Nebraska are linked to other programs in the College World Series.