Blog Entry

Conference Tourney Scouting Report: Big XII

Posted on: March 9, 2010 1:19 pm
Edited on: March 9, 2010 7:31 pm
 
Thomas Beisner

1:00 PM


The Big XII,despite the stigma of being a football conference and sounding like a name of a movie your company won't expense, has developed into quite the powerful basketball league over the past several seasons. This year appears to be no different as they enter the post-season with the nation’s top ranked team, three other teams in the top-25 and six teams likely to go dancing. Before they take on the world, though. a little intra-conference positioning is on tap. The Phillips 66 Big XII Tournament (no event is more married to their sponsor) gets underway tomorrow and there are a number of things that the casual observer must know. Study up.

Location
 
 

Kansas City, Missouri, hosting their ninth Phillips 66 Big XII Tournament, is known as both the “BBQ Capital of the World” and the “Paris of the Plains”. The convergence of the Missouri and Kansas rivers originally attracted settlers to the area and KCMO was officially incorporated in 1850. That also marks the last time someone thought, “Hmmm. I think Kansas City might be a nice place to live.” 
 
Names to Know

Sharon Collins – Collins is a delightful elderly lady who will be lingering in the bar of your hotel, sipping a 7-on-7 and working her way through three packs of Marlboro Reds. Often confused with Kansas point guard Sherron Collins, Sharon has developed some witty pick-up lines involving “ball handling” and “going to the rack”. Stay away.

Kim English – Not to be confused with Gary Parrish's Missouri man crush, natives of Kansas City know Kim English for exactly what it is – an institution of learning. Sue Ann Kim established Kim English in 2001 after relocating from Beijing and has now helped over 75 Chinese transplants gain American citizenship and master their new language.. 好!

Tiny Gallon – In basketball circles, Tiny Gallon is the freshman center for the Oklahoma Sooners. In Kansas City, though, tiny gallon has two completely different meanings. It’s most commonly (and most boringly) used a reference to anything smaller than 128 ounces. For example, you might tell the gas station attendant that their soda machine is out and he will reply, “Dammit son, just grab one of them tiny gallons in the cooler”. The less frequently used version in Kansas City is used as part of a phrase such as “Dang, did you see that tiny gallon the red dress? She must not be from ‘round here”.  This variation often does not appear in Kansas City vernacular at all, making appearances only when a large amount of visitors come to town.  Because women in Kansas City are fat.

The Contenders

Kansas – They entered the year at the top of the polls and ended the season still hugging the top spot. That’s certainly not a bad thing. In between, there were fights with the football team, DUIs, Facebook banishments and the worst free throw ever. And that’s just two players. They’re the favorites to win the national title so you have to figure they’re the favorites to win this tournament. I didn’t fact check that. I’m just assuming.

Kansas State – Just seven years removed from coaching a high school team, Frank Martin has Kansas State in national title contention thanks to the backcourt of Jacobham Lincoln and the world’s fastest basketball player/magician Denis Clemente. They dropped both games to Kansas this year but went undefeated against Baylor, Texas A&M and Texas this season. I would assume this, along with their #2 seed, makes them the second favorite.

Baylor – After slowly improving the past few years under Scott Drew and that Australian point guard, the Bears launched themselves onto the national scene this season thanks to Tweety Carter, the school’s first McDonald’s All-American, and LaceDarius Dunn, who’s name sounds like the sequel to this movie. Their road to the title likely goes through Texas, Kansas State and Kansas. They’re 2-0 against the Horns this year and 0-2 against Kansas’ finest, losing by 2 to the Wildcats and by 6 to the Jayhawks.  Again, third in your program, third in your sports book.

Wednesday’s Games

#8 Colorado vs. #9 Texas Tech – Despite protests to just have their athletic directors debate whether athletes respond better to being enticed by sex, drugs and alcohol or by being locked in a closet, these teams will play an actual basketball game. The Buffaloes enter the tournament on a three-game winning streak and the Red Raiders, despite having a guy named Mike Singletary, have showed no backbone in losing seven in a row and nine of eleven.  You sold on this one yet?  No?  Umm...there will be cheerleaders?

#5 Missouri vs. #12 Nebraska – Even The Scwab is going to sit this one out.  You should too. 

#7 Oklahoma State vs. #10 Oklahoma – There will be plenty of hatred in the Sprint Center for this one and, for once, it won’t be because Oklahoma State is fighting each other. An in-state rivalry is just the kind of first-round sexiness this tournament needs. The key for Oklahoma State will be Big XII Player of the Year James Anderson, who topped the conference with 22 points per game. On the other side, Oklahoma freshman guard Tommy Mason-Griffin was the conference leader in tattoos per square inch. I don’t think that will be as useful in this matchup. It does bear noting, though.

#6 Texas vs. #11 Iowa State – The formerly top-ranked Longhorns are now the sixth-seed in the Big XII tournament after a road loss to Kansas State sent them spiraling into a 6-8 tailspin to finish the year. However, barring a disaster, Texas will slaughter the Cyclones and you’ll hear for the 450th time about Dexter Pittman's weight loss. What they won’t tell you, though, is that his excess weight stumbled across some radioactive contamination in a sewer and formed a living organism capable of transforming into actual size Tweety Carter, Tommy Mason-Griffin and Sherron Collins body doubles. This could pave the way for a Longhorn tourney run.

Rest of the Schedule

Quarterfinals  - Thursday, March 11
No. 1 Kansas vs. CU/TTU winner  11:30 a.m.
No. 4 Texas A&M vs. MU/NU winner  2:00 p.m.
No. 2 Kansas State vs. OU/OSU winner  6:00 p.m.
No. 3 Baylor vs. ISU/UT winner  8:30 p.m.

Semifinals - Friday, March 12
Thursday afternoon winners  6:00 p.m.
Thursday evening winners  8:30 p.m.

Final - Saturday, March 13
Semifinal winners  5:00 p.m.
Comments

Since: Feb 26, 2010
Posted on: March 10, 2010 12:50 pm
 

Conference Tourney Scouting Report: Big XII

Very nice! Thanks for great article, I will definitely use my newly acquired knowledge while watching the tournament.



Since: Feb 26, 2010
Posted on: March 10, 2010 8:19 am
 

Conference Tourney Scouting Report: Big XII

Soild, educational yet witty report.  Well done! Why can't all sports writers take some notes from this.



Since: Feb 18, 2010
Posted on: March 10, 2010 7:00 am
 

Conference Tourney Scouting Report: Big XII

Rock on, Beisner.  Good stuff..SHaron COllins



Since: Feb 24, 2010
Posted on: March 9, 2010 9:51 pm
 

Conference Tourney Scouting Report: Big XII

Enjoyable read as always Beisner




Since: Feb 24, 2010
Posted on: March 9, 2010 3:03 pm
 

Conference Tourney Scouting Report: Big XII

Well done Thomas.  Especially liked the names to know.  Couldn't you come up with something for Epke?

Another suggestion: link to that movie the conference is named after. 




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