Volume 95, Issue 92

Wednesday, March 27, 2002
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The Mustangs' run to the University Cup final

It's "Good-en"... it's all "Good-en!"

It's "Good-en"... it's all "Good-en!"

For whom the bell tolls
Jordan Bell
Sports Editor

The pretenders to the throne have been banished to Bobby Knight's burning inferno of eternal damnation (strike up the harps) and only the fabulous four remain.

The NCAA's annual March Madness tournament has arrived in Minneapolis for the Final Four. The Kansas Jayhawks will meet the Maryland Terrapins in one semi-final, the Oklahoma Sooners and Indiana Hoosiers lock horns in the other.

The Gazette has the skinny on all this weekend's action.

Kansas versus Maryland

Bell's call – Kansas to pull it out at the wire.

The Jayhawks were completely enthralling against the Oregon Ducks in the Midwest regional. Centre Nick Collison and forward Drew Gooden owned the glass against the smaller, weaker Oregon front line.

Kansas – meet Chris Wilcox and Lonny Baxter. These two Terrapins forwards are massive physical specimens. I picture a mad scientist plotting a scheme to create the perfect athlete every time I witness Wilcox on display.

The Jayhawks may have loads of trouble operating their potent offensive attack against these two bruisers, but if they can get out and run in transition it would be highly advantageous.

In the back-court, Jayhawks guards Kirk Heinrich and Jeff Boschee are polar opposites to Wilcox and Baxter – scrawny, baby-faced boys without a great deal of athleticism. However, what they lack in genes, they more than make up for in court savvy and elusiveness.

Unfortunately, they will have their hands full on the defensive end with Terrapins guard Juan Dixon.

Dixon is a pure scorer who can create his own shot and plays a solid transition game. Look for Jayhawk guard Aaron Miles to assume the defensive assignment of containing Dixon.

Nonetheless, this game will come down to two things – owning the paint and capitalizing on free-throw opportunities.

Oklahoma versus Indiana

Bell's call – Oklahoma safely, but if the Hoosiers shoot like they did against the Kent State Golden Flashes, even The Gazette's All-Star team couldn't beat them.

The Hoosiers have made quite the deep run in the Madness. Unfortunately, their fairy tale season is coming to an end. The Hoosiers will be unable to re-enact the success of the famous, fictional Hickory Cornhuskers of Hoosiers fame.

The Sooners are an extremely strange breed. They aren't head-and- shoulders above the competition, but they do the little things necessary to win games and very rarely lose their collective calm – much like the Western Mustangs men's basketball team this season.

Sooners guard Hollis Price is cash money from long range and forward Aaron McGhee (when out of foul trouble) is a beast down low. The Hoosiers don't have the defensive stoppers to contain these top guns.

Final – Kansas versus Oklahoma

Bell's call – The "real" final was already played between Kansas and Maryland.

I could rant and rave about the final of these Big 12 Conference heavyweights, but I would be wasting your time. This game is more or less a foregone conclusion – Kansas will run the Sooners off the court.

It will be nice to see Kansas coach Roy Williams finally cutting down the nets after securing the elusive championship.

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Copyright The Gazette 2002