Corey who runs the great SBN Kansas Blog Rock Chalk Talk answered some questions for us in regards to today's game, he wasn't able to get us his questions in time. Kansas is having a great year in both football and hoops.
I will start out with something near and dear to my heart, Orthopedics. I am amazed that Brandon Rush has rehabed his ACL injury so quickly. His impact on the team is obvious but is where he needs to be to have a Major impact on the team?
Yes and no. He was supposed to be limited to only 20 minutes against Arizona, as he is recovering from the aforementioned ACL injury, but played 33 instead. So, he is just about there in terms of minutes, but his minutes aren't to the point where we need them to be. I am just surprised that he is actually playing at all this early from his ACL injury, so I will take whatever he can give us at this point. But yes, he does need to get back to his old self (plus some) for us to make a serious run at the National Title.
A lot of folks thought that Kansas was headed to the Final Four and quite possible the finals last year. I know its early but how did the loss to UCLA affect your outlook on this team and how do you think they will respond this season after being so close; where do you think you need to improve to get to the Final Four this season?
Not really. UCLA was a better team than us last year, probably the second best in the country after Florida. Our team returns almost everyone, so it had a little impact on this team's outlook, but not a whole lot. We should be better this season, another year of experience blah blah blah, but the loss did, at least somewhat, effect how good I thought we could be this season.
This is a solid Kansas team with four different Jayhawks having led KU in scoring, five in rebounding and seven in steals in 6 games this season; that is a balanced attack. Outside of Brandon Rush, who we all know is a solid player, who is the most important player on the team this season?
Mario Chalmers. Or, as we call him over at Rock Chalk Talk, Super Mario. He is an awesome on-ball defender, can hit a 3, and is probably our go-to-guy when we really need a bucket late in a game. Brandon Rush is the leader of this team, but Super Mario might be the best player. He is really good. The other really important player to this team is Darrell Arthur. He needs to have a big presence in the post, or our attack becomes WAY too one-dimensional.
Kansas dominated USC last season with five Jayhawks scoring in double figures as KU defeated USC 72-62. How do you think KU will match-up against SC this season?
USC has imported tons and tons of talent since then, namely O.J. Mayo. But the kid I am really impressed with is Davon Jefferson, who exploded the other night against Oklahoma. He could be the difference maker in this game. But back to the question, it is clear that USC is substantially better than last season. The question in this game will be how much we improved from last season.
This has been a great season for Kansas athletics with the football team having an outstanding season but wit Kansas always being known as a basketball school the success of the football team must have the campus buzzing. Is this two-sport success a passing thing or has Kansas sent a message that they will be a two-sport force in the Big 12. Are you guys going through sports overload?!
Haha. Sports overload doesn't exist for me. I have made it clear over at RCT that I think the football success will continue, we have more than a one-year-thing going on. The fan support, and how willing they will be to support a football team that has traditionally be awful, will go a long way in telling whether we will stay a basketball school, or become a two-sport dominating force. I hope we get to the latter, but if we do it will take a long time, and a lot of fan support to raise football to the level of basketball.