Sub-state, KU and K-State

By Steve Sell
January 07, 2021

Wednesday’s ramblings…

SUB-STATE BASKETBALL INFORMATION – I posted a story earlier today about KSHSAA’s plan for sub-state basketball tournaments and they’re much on the line of the state volleyball tournaments contested this past fall.

State tournaments will be four-team events and no third-place games will be played. The state quarterfinals will be different this year in that there are pre-determined groupings for games on Monday and Tuesday – No. 1 vs. No. 2, No. 3 vs. No. 4, No. 5 vs. No. 6 and No. 7 vs. No. 8. The host will be determined by the higher seed.

Then at state, teams will be seeded by records.

McPherson High will be in a sub-state grouping that includes Buhler, Nickerson, Pratt and Ulysses. I would imagine the MHS boys and Buhler being matched in the finals, while the MHS and Nickerson girls are expected to meet.

For the Bullpup teams, they just need to keep winning to grab the No. 1 seed. Both teams appear to be the class of AVCTL Division III, but a difficult non-conference schedule needs to be navigated. Especially for the boys, as the Invitational field will be strong and there’s also games with Andover Central, Andale and Derby.

We don’t know what the fan situation will be by that time, but as of now only parents are allowed into games until Jan. 28. At that time, the situation will be re-evaluated. As of now, numbers are showing no decline in Kansas.

Hopefully by May when the spring sports titles are determined, we’ll have a better grip on the pandemic and crowds will be allowed back in.

GOOD BOUNCEBACK FOR KU – I was really worried how the Kansas Jayhawks would respond after their lopsided home loss to Texas.

They had to go on the road Tuesday to play TCU and were down injured All-American candidate Marcus Garrett and freshman standout Bryce Thompson, leaving little depth.

TCU also hasn’t been one of the easier places to play for the Jayhawks. But they took control of the game early and went on for a rout.

The barometer of this KU team may be big man David McCormack, who has been wildly inconsistent. He had a good game against TCU, even though he was going up against a quality big man. McCormack is 6-10 and 250 pounds, with a chiseled body. He needs to use that mass to power up instead of settling for half-hooks and fadeaways.

The Jayhawks now have Oklahoma coming up and you can bet Lon Kruger will have a well-devised game plan.

WILDCATS STRUGGLING – Full admission. I probably haven’t watched 30 minutes of Kansas State’s basketball season.

The Wildcats are 5-7 and just out of the cellar in the Big 12, thanks to a conference-opening victory at Iowa State.

From what little that I’ve watched and also from what I’ve read, it’s a team that plays hard, but its talent is young and growing pains are obvious.

I did catch quite a bit of the Texas Tech game on Tuesday and KSU never backed down. While it hung around, you never got the sense it was going to win as Texas Tech is a good team with better players.

The Wildcats are going to be one of those teams, however, that opponents won’t be able to overlook. Oklahoma State comes into Manhattan on Saturday and while the Cowboys are an up-and-comer, don’t be surprised if KSU pulls off a victory.