Today at 5 The Sunflower Showdown will take place in Missouri. As you'd expect the overall series in conference tournament play belongs to Kansas. The Jayhawks have won their last 10 straight tournament games against Kansas State but this is just the fourth time ever that the two teams will meet in a conference championship game.
Kansas State beat KU in 1980, Kansas then won in 1981 and 2010. When the Jayhawks do make the Big 12 championships they don't lose often. This is KU's 10th trip to the Big 12 championships in the 17 years of the event. Overall they're 8-1 in the Big 12 championship game and they're 12-5 overall in all their conference championship games.
Let's face it, as great as yesterday's games were, this is the light at the end of the tunnel. Lately, Kansas has taken almost everything. The Jayhawks have won 46 of the last 49 meetings with their in-state rival. Since the inception of the Big 12 the Jayhawks own a 38-3 record against the Wildcats including a 7-0 record in the Big 12 championship.
While Kansas State is looking for the ultimate upset, Kansas is looking to pad its already impressive history. If KU wins it will be the school's 13th ever conference title and it's 9th Big 12 title.
You know, it's a really gray day here in Kansas City. The last two days it's been gorgeous, warm and windy. Today though it's gray and cloudy. Definitely won't stop the onslaught of Wildcats and Jayhawks fans piling into the Power and Light district and Sprint Center today.
At yesterday's pep rallys inside the P&L the Kansas band was getting boo'd; mostly by Iowa State fans but I'd be surprised if a few purple clad folks weren't joining in.
I'm still so excited for what happened last night for Perry Ellis. You see, I covered this kid for four years in high school. I got to know his family. For some reason, I always get attached to players like this. I get defensive of them, always trying to talk them up because of how I know they can play. I did the same thing when Kellen Moore was at Boise State. I covered Kellen when he was in high school and I became great friends with his dad and his brother and everyone in the Prosser community. I tend to take things like their mothers would. I root for the good kids and let me tell ya', Perry Ellis is a great kid.
Remember that Perry was the valedictorian of his high school, Wichita Heights. When he would be getting things like socks or wrist bands or all these other things from people, he'd give them to his teammates that needed them. When his Falcons teammates were struggling? Perry was there to tutor them. This is the kind of kid that Perry is. It takes a while for him to get comfortable with people, for him to be able to come out of his shell. I think the same thing applies to his play for Kansas. It's taken him a little bit to get comfortable with his teammates and his role on the team. Now? We're starting to see that Perry's talent wasn't just solid against the Wichita City League.
Now, will Perry have that same type of game today? Probably not. Kevin Young said his leg injury is just fine and he'll be good to go today against Kansas State. But, will Kansas welcome another double-digit effort off the bench? Absolutely.
Last night, Perry got the opportunity he was always waiting for. Today, we get the matchup we've been waiting for this entire weekend. Perry didn't disappoint, I'm hoping today's game is just as exciting.