Open Mike: The Mantra Mike Tufano February 7, 2013 Open Mike And just like that, down goes Kansas. My mantra this year, each time I’ve watched kU play is, “They’re just not that good. They’re beatable.” But all season long we were stuck watching them pull win after win out of somewhere the sun doesn’t shine1. But teams like that have to come down to earth sometime… and they’ve fallen hard, losing 2 consecutive games for the first time since the W. administration2. On Saturday we watched Oklahoma State head into Allen Fieldhouse and break their home winning streak. They did it by shooting lights out, and simply outplaying kU. Last night was different. Have you ever played a game of poker against someone who had absolutely no clue how to play poker? It’s infuriating. They go all-in with a pair of 4s or fold a sure thing because they didn’t see the full house staring them in the face. It’s impossible to predict and impossible to play against because they’re so bad they can’t help but break every convention. That’s what TCU did to kU last night3. They’re still the worst team in the Big 12, and this may very well be the only win they get4. But this isn’t a site dedicated to kU sports5. What this means to K-State is simple. A week ago we were talking about kU running away with another Big 12 title. But today we sit, at the midpoint of conference play, tied for 1st place with little brother down the road6. While they prepare for a tough trip to Norman, we look for revenge against the Cyclones on Saturday. If both teams take care of business, sole possession of first place is on the line Monday night. And while a win in Lawrence never feels like it’s ripe for the taking, remember that mantra. They’re not that good. They’re beatable. And now everyone knows it. Notes: I debated if I really should use this phrase, but it was just too fun not to. [↩] And perhaps if we’re lucky, like the W administration, kU will panic and send themselves on a downward spiral that will be difficult to overcome for a decade or more. [↩] Not saying TCU didn’t play ball. It was by far the best they’ve played all year. Maybe ever. But that just isn’t saying much. kU looked lost until it was too late to get back on track. [↩] The saying goes, “to be the best, you have to beat the best… in their case they beat the best to have a shot at 9th place. [↩] If it was, there’s no way I’d pay for year round hosting when it’s only necessary for a season. [↩] Regardless of what an idiot kU fan tried to convince me of on Twitter. Yes they beat us head to head, but we’re still tied for 1st with the same record. Tie breakers are only relevant in the Big 12 when it comes time for Big 12 Tourney seeding. Even if they sweep us, if we end up with the same record, we share the title… right Oklahoma? [↩] K-State fans, we salute you!