It may not seem like it, but the Kansas basketball season is right upon us. With the NBA draft combine and players staying in the draft or not being completed, spring recruitment wrapping up and now with the Non-conference schedule being released, the season is right around the corner.
Obviously, there is still some time left before the season, but it’s fun to get excited about the upcoming year. Dotson and Udoka will lead the charge, de Sousa is eligible, Garrett will be All Big 12 defense, Ochai will make major strides and the freshman, when though not ranked highly, are good, strong prospects. So, it looks like it’ll be another successful year in Lawrence, especially after a “down year” (yes, 26 wins is a down year for Kansas — it is what it is).
I’ll be honest, I completely forgot about the release of the Non-conference schedule, I thought we still had some time before it was released, but now that it’s released, let’s break it down.
Tue, Nov 5: Duke in NYC
I will be at this game, probably sitting court side, throwing beer at the referees when they miss obvious foul calls against Doke, but that’s the role I play for this team. I will do it if I have too. I can’t wait for this, being a Kansas fan in NY, it’s obviously rare if I can get to a game, so having them in NY to start the season is very good for me.
To the game, I think this is a game Kansas should and will win. Duke, once again, has insane talent, but they’re raw and inexperienced. And you could be saying “well they were raw and inexperienced when they blew out Kentucky in the championship classic.” You would be right. But Kentucky was also young and inexperienced and Duke has 2 top 3 picks. Kansas will field a very veteran lineup, one of the best PGs and one of the best big men in College Basketball, who have played in bigger games than this. I expect Dotson to shit everyone up about who’s better between him and Tre Jones, and I think this game starts the “Dotson for NPOY” campaign.
Prediction: Kansas wins
Fri, Nov 8: UNC Greensboro (home opener)
Home opener against UNC Greensboro, do I need to say anymore? Kansas will probably start this game slow, like usual, and then dominate to a blow out win.
Prediction: Kansas wins (2-0)
Fri, Nov 15: Monmouth
I like this. Our non-conference schedule is tough as it is. We don’t need to be scheduling these high mid-major schools. We will have our hands full for the whole year. It’s good to have some cupcake games, get the confidence up.
Prediction: Kansas wins in a blowout (3-0)
Tue, Nov 19: East Tennessee State
A great tune up game before Maui. Kansas might look ahead to ending the semester and getting to Hawaii, and a Tuesday night game could lead to some early difficulties. Don’t be shocked if ETSY hangs around for more than you like, but Kansas still wins by double digits.
Prediction: Kansas wins (4-0)
Mon-Wed, Nov 25-27: Three Maui Invitational games
Won’t be able to break down the entire tournament because we’re not going to know matchups as we get later in the tournament. But I think Kansas her a favorable draw until the championship game. I fully expect them to play Michigan State for the Maui title. This game, in all honestly, could lock up a #1 seed for Kansas in March but I don’t see Kansas winning this championship. Michigan State is tough, talented and experienced. They’re gonna want their revenge from their loss to KU last year. I see Michigan State winning in a CLOSE one, however, I fully expect to see Michigan State deep into March. We’ll get our revenge.
Prediction: Kansas wins 2 and loses in Championship game (6-1)
Sat, Dec 7: Colorado
The Andrew Wiggins vs Colorado revenge game. Yes, I am still bitter about that 40+ foot buzzer beater Colorado hit to beat Kansas in the 2013-2014 season. But this time, Kansas is Allen Fieldhouse, against a PAC-12 team they should easily beat. They might have a little Maui hangover, literally and figuratively (they’re college kids in Maui, they should enjoy themselves) but Kansas will win this game.
Prediction: Kansas wins — pulls away a in second half (7-1)
Tue, Dec 10: UW-Milwaukee
Let’s rack up the points and box score, let’s get our W and move on. Let’s not mess around here and make it more difficult than it should be.
Prediction: Kansas wins (8-1)
Sat, Dec 14: UMKC in Kansas City (Sprint Center)
This game is going to be fun. I’m glad we’re not playing some low level, power 5 team in the Jayhawks shootout. This is going to be great for UMKC and their school and also good for Kansas. UMKC knows how to score the ball and will score the ball. Kansas will have to defend the 3 in this game, and UMKC has a chance to neutralize the Sprint Center crowd. The game is going to be fun, but Kansas returns home with another win.
Prediction: Kansas win (9-1)
Sat, Dec 21: at Villanova
This is all I’m going to say about Villanova, because it still makes me sick the games we lost to them. Until we beat them outside of AFH, I’m going to think we’re going to lose to them. Even on their down year, last year, they still almost got us at home. They just have our number. We just have to tip our cap to them and call them our daddies.
Prediction: Kanas loses (9-2)
Sun, Dec 29: at Stanford
I’ll let you all in on a little secret:
*we are not losing to Stanford, to end the non conference schedule. Bill Self will not allow it*
That’s it, that’s the secret.
Prediction: Kanas wins (10-2)
And there you have it. The non-conference schedule is complete (except SEC/Big 12 challenge). Kansas is going to win double digit games headed into Conference play AND have some marquee, resume building wins.
Get ready folks, we’re almost there.