Hearne: Panic at the (Jayhawk) Disco

imagesHere’s the deal…

Things are going to heck in Lawrence after three straight losses by the KU men’s basketball team. You see, they’re a little spoiled. Actually, they’re a whole lot spoiled.

I think former KU coach Roy Williams was onto something when he described Kansas basketball fans as the “wine and cheese crowd.”

“If you don’t want to cheer for us, keep your big butts at home,” Williams added.

Since losing to TCU, those big wine and cheese-scarfing butts have been in an uproar. Practically suicidal, with the hyperbole flying off of the keyboards of sportswriters like there’s no tomorrow.

Case in point, this lollapalooza unleashed by Lawrence Journal World  sports columnist-turned-doomsayer Tom Keegan:

“If James Naismith had known Kansas University one day would butcher the game of basketball as badly as it did in the first half of a stunning loss Wednesday night in Fort Worth, Texas, he not only might have thought twice about starting the program, he might have passed on the entire idea of inventing the sport.”


Did the newspaper’s sports staff have a pool to see who could come up with the most ridiculous statement?

Then again KU coach Bill Self more or less set the table for Keegan with this over-the-top utterance after losing to the last place team in the Big 12:

“It’s the worst team Kansas has ever put on the floor since Dr. Naismith was here.”

Keegan’s followup column was far more boosterish, beneath the headline: “Can’t count KU out if losses mount.”

Noting essentially that past KU teams had fared poorly in February then gone on to greatness. Keegan’s column preceded a second KU loss, sending the city of Lawrence into something approaching shell shock.

These days this little town lives and dies KU men’s basketball.

I kid you not.

Tom_Keegan_Hole_of_Week_t440Here’s how I see it:

Wasn’t this supposed to be a rebuilding year for the Jayhawks to begin with? As late as January 19th Keegan was celebrating KU’s good fortune (i.e. luck) by reminding the faithful, “It’s time to embrace this team’s ugly way of winning.”

In other words, deep down everyone knew this KU team was not the stuff of Cinderellas, so relax and enjoy the ride while it lasts.

“Do your blood pressure a favor,” Keegan counseled. “Enjoy the way Kansas finishes games and trust that in time your favorite basketball doctor, 10th-year coach Bill Self, will figure out a way to remove all the hideous warts you have to see leading up to the pleasant part.

“The formula of winning ugly and finishing pretty doesn’t seem to be going anywhere anytime soon, so you might as well get used to it.”

Viewed more realistically, what Keegan maybe meant to say was KU had been extremely lucky.

We’ll see.

Meanwhile back at the Wine & Cheese Ranch, all is not well in the kingdom of Dr. James Naismith.

The bad basketball flu season is alive and kicking.


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11 Responses to Hearne: Panic at the (Jayhawk) Disco

  1. chuck says:

    Life is all about expectations. Your divorce lawyer will prep you on this in the hall before testimony.

    It looks like KU Fans are gonna have to make do with huge moral support payments in lieu of victories, from Charlie Weis.

  2. rkcal says:

    What else is there to focus on in Lawrence? Or KC, for that matter? At least sports-wise. The fact that the KU men’s basketball team is the only sporting entity that’s achieved consistent success in the last 20 plus years just magnifies the situation.

  3. Super Dave says:

    Well it is what it is they will either walk away with it this year or come back and do it next year. As I say no team and no one person never stays on top forever. I hope the hawks snap out of it and start winning again but then reality of it is they might not. just have to wait and see what they do.

    • CG says:

      its almost a given that k ju will come back and be in the thick of things when march rolls around.

    • Super Dave says:

      I been supporting the hawks for over 44 years and it’s always been a good ride and in all the ups and downs it’s still been fun.

  4. Rainbow Man says:

    That comment by Roy still baffles me to this day. Like someone who would shell out a few Grrr for a hard seat in a gym may not also partake in some nice Napa Reds and fromage. Roy went on the clock at KU the minute he made that statement.

    As someone who travels to Raleigh/Durham/Chapel Hill quite frequently… I can tell you that there is a heck of a lot more wine and cheese served up over there… we are talking seersucker suits… Silicon Valley East … and a base of people all educated by NC, Duke, NC State and Wake….Believe me… Roy will never utter those words in Chapel Hill.

    • admin says:

      I don’t so much think Roy was dissing the drinking of wine and eating of cheese so much as he was trying to characterize KU fans as snooty, spoiled, not down and dirty enough.

      However back when Roy was here, many KU fans were plenty down and dirty.

      Less so perhaps after Lew Perkins came and extorted the faithful to the tune of six-figures for their basketball and football seats.

  5. gerald bostock says:

    Just because you now live in Lawrence, you do not have to weigh in on KU basketball. Over the years on this blog and in the Star, you have provided ample evidence, for better or worse, of what interests you, and the track record is well established that you don’t care about KU basketball and know even less about it.

  6. the dude says:

    So the Kansas Varsity Shamateurs aren’t who we thought they were, big deal.
    We all know what the real reason why they suck this year; Billy Self has lost that lovin’ feeling since old MU left the Big 12. 😉

  7. Fresh says:

    Shocked. Just shocked I tell you. Shocked that Hearne isn’t running with the Self rumors.

  8. the dude says:

    I think Roy actually said “whine and cheese”, “whine and cheese”.
    Because KU chalkchokers do lots of whining.

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