Not this year, Baby

Oh, Kansas.

What can I say?

I’m not the least bit a Kentucky fan. Nor am I a John Calipari fan. And I’m so sick of hearing about Anthony Davis.

Kentucky was the better team tonight.

But Kansas also missed some opportunities.

Kentucky put Kansas in a hole in the first half.

Then, the Jayhawks, like they’ve done throughout the season, turned it up a notch in the second half and clamped down on defense. They cut the lead and made it a competitive game.

But a couple missed dunks and bad passes were killers. The death knell was the travel call on Elijah Johnson as he was setting up for a three-pointer from the corner with just over three minutes left. Kansas was on an 8-0 run at that point and Johnson's three-pointer would have cut Kentucky's lead to four points. 

Those Kansas miscues go the other way and the game might have had a different ending.

We all knew Kansas had to play a near-perfect game to beat Kentucky. Being down 18 points in the first half doesn’t cut it.

It was a fun game to watch. A heck of a run for Kansas. Unlike so many frustrating Kansas teams over the years, this one overachieved and put together a season of which us Jayhawks fans can be really proud. … I’m watching the Kansas City news as I write this and seeing the hordes of fans smiling and high-fiving as they crowd Mass Street says it all.

Beyond the Kansas run, when you think of all the close games, comebacks and upsets -- Lehigh over Duke, Norfolk State over Missouri -- this year’s NCAA tournament was one for the ages.

In the end, I correctly picked Kentucky as the winner in my bracket.

Although, what I really wanted was for Baby 2’s bracket to have the luck of Phoebe’s bracket in 2008. Baby 2 had Kentucky and Kansas in the national championship game with Kansas winning it all.

We came close, Baby. Maybe next year.

Good pre-game reads ...
a In title game, ground rules established
a Jayhawks refuse to lose faith while facing a deficit
a No Easy Path to the Rim for Either Tourney Finalist
a Kansas is running on Releford time
a Legacies at stake in Bill Self-John Calipari national title matchup

(Updated 04.04.2012) Good post-game reads ...
a KU can’t dig out of hole in 67-59 NCAA title game loss
a Coronation for Kentucky, and for Its Coach
a Valiant effort falls short as Kansas runs out of magic in title game
a NCAA Championship photo gallery
a Kentucky: Thanks for a memory ... Fifteen years or so down the road, after they’ve experienced the emotional bumps and bruises of both NBA and everyday life, they may come to the realization they never had more fun playing this game than they did with each other. They could have gotten more out of it.

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