UT is a good team, but as Mark pointed out, they are a vulnerable team. This strikes me as an important point and one that I should have considered more. Last year, we were a good team, but we were an extremely vulnerable team, particularly once JR started going cold. Indeed, a lot of Roy's teams were vulnerable - to athleticism, to cold shooting, to slobberknocking fisticuffs. I hadn't considered it before, but Self seems to want to build teams that don't have these vulnerabilities.
Using one primary ballhandler leaves you up a creek if he gets injured or foul prone. Self's solution: have two to three guys who can handle and dish the rock. Not only does this work as a sort of insurance policy, but it also makes it harder for opposing coaches to prepare for you.
Having guards that can penetrate and create offense leaves you much less reliant on warm shooting. Heck, on Monday we shot 1/7 from behind the arc and still won by 15 on the road in Stillwater to a team that owned UT (and by the way, OSU may have played better on offense against UT, but I think you have to give credit to KU's defense for that).
And in slobberknocking fisticuffs we've shown ourselves more than capable of knocking more slobber and cuffing more fists. Want to slow up the game and keep it ugly? Fine. You'll be tired at about the 8 minute mark and we'll run you silly from then on out.
I've been a big Self supporter, but I think that was more a result of my dovish personality towards KU hoops than any keen understanding of exactly what he was doing. But now his vision for the program is coming into focus for me, and I really like what I'm seeing. This Self team is tough, athletic and enthusiastic, and I love it.
And this team is not very vulnerable, at least not in the Williamsian sense. Our key vulnerabilities are probabably intense ball pressure at the guard spots and really hot three point shooting (but for whom is this not true?). I would add cold free throw shooting as well, but we've really excelled at that over the last 8 weeks, so I don't think I can.
I just love where this team is going. I got to watch a lot of college basketball this weekend and I must echo the comments from Jayhawk fans everywhere - when national media folks ignore or denigrate Kansas, they shine a harsh light on their overpaid ignorance. The Seth Davis OU thing was perfect. We'll probably beat OU in the league by 2-3 games and a tiebreaker, and they're the threat?
That's rich. This is the same guy who ELEVEN DAYS AGO called KSU - with UT, CU, OU, TT and KU still left on their schedule - a possible NCAA tournament team.
Seth, bubby! Tell me you don't believe the things you say on TV!