REAL Standings: What a Sham Edition. . .

If a basketball announcer not named Reid Gettys says something stupid, is it still a Reid-iculous statement? Probably not. Especially when the perpetrator is Brad Sham. Surely there is a more appropriate moniker for such an occurrence: A “Brad-iculous” statement? Doesn’t sound right. Too oblique.

A “Sham-ful expression”? Maybe a tad bit harsh.

A “B.S.”? That seems promising.

Or is it worth creating an epithet for Mr. Sham at all unless and until his verbal miscues become as commonplace as those dubbed “Reid-iculous”?

I’ll take a wait and see approach, despite the fact that B.S said at least twice during the K-State Baylor game Saturday that “Scott Drew does not get the attention and credit he deserves. He is one of only six coaches who have been to the Elite Eight twice in the last three seasons.”

If going to the Elite Eight were a litmus test of some sort, there would be some merit to this comment. But, hell, even Quinn Snyder went to an Elite 8 at Mizzou.

In 2010, Baylor made the E-8 by beating 14 seed Sam Houston St 58-49, 11 seed Old Dominion 76-68, and 10 Seed St. Mary’s 72-49.

In 2012, Baylor beat 14 seed South Dakota St 68-60, 11 seed Colorado 80-63, and 10 seed Xavier 75-70.

I have nothing against advancing in the tourney by playing lesser seeded teams that knock better potential opponents out of your way. You play who is in front of you. I would take a national championship playing teams seeded 16, 9, 13, 15, 16, and 16 and not apologize for it.

On the other hand, winning six games against no team seeded in single digits is hardly the stuff of which legends are made—especially with the talent that has somehow, for some reason, made its way to something called Waco in recent years. And certainly not when you watch Baylor regularly take the court unprepared against both good teams and lesser ones during the conference race.

The reason I mention this is that there was nothing worth talking about on the court Saturday. All five Home teams won as projected: Iowa St over TCU, Okie St over OU, West Virginia over Tech, K-State over the aforementioned Passivist Drews, and KU over Texas.

As a result, there was no change, however small, in the REAL Standings. The only change is that now there are six games, not seven, remaining in the season.

THE CURRENT 2013 SEASON REAL TIERS (Subject to change)

1. Tier One: Baylor/Iowa St/KU/KSU/OU/OSU

2. Tier Two: Texas/West Virginia

3. Tier Three: Texas Tech

4. Tier Four: TCU


1. 13.5-4.5 Okie St (9-3) Projected L’s: at ISU At-risk games: at WVU

3. 12.5-5.5

K-State (9-3) Projected L’s: at BU, at OSU At-risk games: at UT

Oklahoma (7-5) Projected L’s: N/A At-risk games: at UT

4. 12-6

KU (9-3) Projected L’s: at OSU, at ISU, at BU At-risk games: N/A

5. 11-7

Baylor (7-5) Projected L’s: at OU At-risk games: at WVU, at UT

6. 10.5-7.5

Iowa St (7-5) Projected L’s: at OU, at BU At-risk games: at WVU

7. 7.5-10.5

W. Virginia (6-6) Projected L’s: at K-State, at KU, at OU At-risk games: OSU, BU, ISU

8. 6-12

Texas (3-9) Projected L’s: at OSU At-risk games: K-State, OU, BU, at Tech

9. 3.5-14.5

Texas Tech (2-10) Projected L’s: OU, at ISU, at K-State, at KU At-risk games: UT

10. 1-17

TCU (1-11) Projected L’s: UT, at KU, OSU, at Tech, at K-State, OU At-risk games: N/A


What to Watch


1. West Virginia vs. K-St**1/2 (8:00p.m.) (Projected W: K-State)

Bob Huggins returns to the scene of the crime. This could be a bit more difficult for the Home team than you might expect.


2. TEXAS at TCU *1/2 (7:00p.m.) (Projected W: UT)

If UT shoots 21% again, the Frogs might stay in contention for their second win of conference play into the second half, Kabongo notwithstanding..


3. Oklahoma at Texas Tech**1/2 (6:00p.m.) (Projected W: OU)

OU let one slip away from it in Stillwater, giving the Okie St fans a “rush the court” experience. If they are still sulking, Tech could pull an Iowa St on them, giving OU its first back to back Road Rushes in history. If you want to call Tech emptying the stands a “rush.” “Strolling” the court might be more accurate.

4. Iowa St at Baylor**** (8:00p.m.) (Projected W: Baylor)

Baylor should be able to win this one with its size, athleticism, and the Home Court. But, as alway, there’s the Scott Drew factor.

5. KU at Okie St********** (8:00p.m.) (Projected W: OSU)

The media is finally catching on to what has been apparent in the REAL Standings for some time. This is the game of the year. The eight time defending champion against the young, talented upstarts on their Home court.

Okie St has been more resourceful than overpowering lately, but they have found ways to win as if they were a veteran team.

So how does KU beat a team on the Road that it lost to in Allen Fieldhouse?

They don’t if Okie St plays with the same devil may care attitude it displayed in Lawrence, when it had everything to gain and nothing to lose. But can they? Now that they are in control of the conference race, they have something to lose. And this is the first time they have played under this type of pressure. Pressure that will be exacerbated, rather than alleviated, by the Home crowd busting at the seams to rush the court for REAL, giving Marcus Smart scant room for somersaulting.

One thing KU cannot do is fall behind early and allow the Cowboys to get in a rhythm and play loose.

If the Jayhawks do pull this one out, it will likely be due to the experience gained by four seniors being part of a national Championship game run that included three pressure packed, tooth pulling victories along the way.

The name of the game will be “D,” and the key will be keeping runs to a minimum. Do that, and Number 9 will be do-able.