Kansas Earns No. 1 Seed in NCAA Tournament for Second Straight Year
Kansas has been named a number one seed in the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament for the second straight year and the fourth time in the past five seasons. Bill Self’s squad will take on Boston University from the America East Conference on Friday, March 13 at the BOK Center in Tulsa, Okla. A game time will be announced later.
The Jayhawks are making their 40th NCAA Tournament appearance, as well as their 22nd consecutive trip to the championship and are a number one seed for the 10th time since seeding began in 1979. The Jayhawks were a top seed in 1986, ‘92, ‘95, ‘97, ‘98, 2002, ‘07, ‘08, ‘10 and this season.
KU, who is ranked No. 2 in both the latest Associated Press and USA Today/Coaches polls, is the Big 12 regular season and tournament champions for back-to-back years. This is also the second season in a row that the Jayhawks are 32-2 heading into the NCAA Tournament.
Kansas has won seven straight Big 12 regular season championships dating back to 2005 under head Coach Bill Self as well as four of the last five Big 12 Tournament Championships. This season, KU’s only two losses came at the hands of Texas at Allen Fieldhouse (74-63) and at Kansas State (84-68). KU finished its non-conference schedule with a perfect record (15-0) for the first time since the 2007-08 season. Kansas has won eight games in a row as well as 14 out of its last 15 and is 32-2 overall and 14-2 in Big 12 Conference play.
The seven time defending Big 12 regular season champions are lead by 2011 Big 12 Player of the Year junior Marcus Morris, who is averaging 17.3 points per game to go along with his 7.2 rebounds. His brother and fellow junior Markieff Morris boasts a 13.6 point per game average as well as 8.2 boards. Senior Tyrel Reed gives the ‘Hawks a solid 10 points per game while junior Tyshawn Taylor adds 9.1 points and 4.4 assists per game averages. Sophomore Thomas Robinson gives KU a presence under the basket with 6.5 rebounds per game and an average of eight points while senior Brady Morningstar adds to Taylor’s unselfish assist total with his 111 total and 3.2 per game average.
Boston posted a 21-13 overall record and a 12–4 mark in conference play en route to its first America East Conference title since 2002. The Terriers defeated Stony Brook 56-54 in the conference championship game on Saturday for the team’s 11th straight victory. Boston will be making its seventh overall appearance in the NCAA Men’s Tournament.
BU is lead by senior John Holland who averages 19.2 points per game and 5.9 rebounds as well as junior Darryl Partin who boasts a 14.5 point per game average and 3.4 boards. Also averaging double digits for the Terriers is junior Jake O’Brien with his 11.6 points as well as his 5.8 rebound per game average.
Kansas and Boston have never met before in the history of the two men’s basketball programs, but KU holds a perfect 4-0 record all-time against current America East Conference members with 1-0 records over Albany, Binghamton, Maine and Vermont.
If the Jayhawks beat the Terriers, they will take on the winner of the No. 8 UNLV vs. No. 9 Illinois game on Sunday. Kansas is 4-0 all-time vs. UNLV and 3-2 against Illinois. Kansas has not played the Fighting Illini since current head coach Bill Self left Champaign to coach the Jayhawks in 2003. Self was 78-24 in three seasons at the U of I, including 1-1 against then head coach Roy Williams and KU.
Kansas in the NCAA Tournament Notes
–2011 is Kansas’ 40th NCAA Tournament appearance.
–Kansas’ 22-straight NCAA Tournament appearances, from 1990-2010, is the nation’s longest active list and ranks second-best all time. North Carolina had 27 straight from 1975-2001.
–Kansas is making its third NCAA Tournament trip to Tulsa and its first since the 1975 regional. The Jayhawks are 2-1 in NCAA Tournament games played in Tulsa. KU’s two victories came during it 1974 Final Four run.
–Under head coach Bill Self, Kansas is 15-6 (71.4 percent) in the NCAA Tournament, with four Sweet 16s, three Elite Eights, one Final Four and one NCAA National Championship.
–In the last nine NCAA Tournaments, Kansas has a 24-8 (75.0 percent) record with one NCAA National Championship (2008), three Final Four (2002-03-08) and five Elite Eight (2002-03-04-07-08) appearances.
–Kansas is the No. 1 seed for the 10th time since the NCAA Tournament started seeding in 1979 – 2011, 2010, 2008, 2007, 2002, 1998, 1997, 1995, 1992 and 1986. This is the fourth time KU has been a No. 1 seed under Bill Self (2007-08-10-11). Kansas is 24-8 as a No. 1 seed and 9-0 against the No. 16 seed. The last time Kansas was a No. 1 seed was last year, 2010, when it lost to Northern Iowa in the second round in Oklahoma City.