By Ben Ashworth

Ashworth: Naadir Tharpe pushes to the top

Ashworth: Naadir Tharpe pushes to the top

Naadir Tharpe was given the reins to an enormously talented team. A look to his left and he sees a 7-foot phenom, potentially the first pick in the NBA draft. A look to his right, one of the best players in Kansas high school basketball history. Straight ahead, a player many crowned as the best […]

Ashworth: K-State loss does not hold long-term consequences

Ashworth: K-State loss does not hold long-term consequences

Kansas has dominated Kansas State in basketball for the better part of the last two decades.  If Kansas is the Harlem Globetrotters, then Kansas State is the Washington Generals.  If Kansas is the sun, then Kansas State is the polar ice caps. Before Monday, Kansas won 48 of the last 51 games against the Wildcats. […]

Texas able to counter Kansas’ size

The bigger they are, the harder they fall. Or in the case of Jayhawk opponents, the bigger they are, the harder they are to beat. There are few teams that can match up with Kansas, from a size perspective and physicality perspective.  In the Jayhawks’ defeat against the Longhorns, Kansas showed that it is vulnerable […]

Kansas shows killer instinct in victory over TCU

Sometimes during a quiet Lawrence night, if you block out the usual sounds of the house settling and the crickets chirping, you can hear it, off in the distance. A Kansas fan jolts violently out of his sleep.  “13 points in the first half!” he exclaims in a stupor, a cold sweat glistening on his […]

Ashworth: Kansas basketball shaped by difficult schedule

The eighth century brought us Homer’s The Iliad. The 17th century gave us Paradise Lost. And the 21st century brought us the 2013-14 Kansas men’s basketball schedule. Each is an epic in its own right. Kansas’ schedule has been grueling, onerous and any other word you can find by searching “difficult” in a thesaurus. Instead […]

Ashworth: KU fanbase may be upset with recruiting class

Ashworth: KU fanbase may be upset with recruiting class

Kansas fans, you asked for this. You were tired of Kentucky getting all the top recruits.  You overlooked the successes of the Morris twins, Thomas Robinson and Tyshawn Taylor (all four-star recruits). Many of you asked yourself whether Bill Self had lost his recruiting touch. Then Self brought in his statement class. Six freshman, three […]

Ashworth: Three-pointers cause concern for basketball team

Ashworth: Three-pointers cause concern for basketball team

Down in the Bahamas, the sun blazed, the waves lapped against the glistening sands of Paradise Island and fans congregated to drink, gamble and watch college basketball. The scene sounds downright enchanting. However, within the grand ballroom of Atlantis Resorts, the Jayhawks found it difficult to enjoy their weekend trip to utopia.  Three grueling games […]

Ashworth: Big 12 basketball exceeds preseason expectations

Ashworth: Big 12 basketball exceeds preseason expectations

The Big 12 didn’t get the memo that it was supposed to be on the decline this year.  It must have gotten lost in the mail. Even after the news of Marcus Smart’s return and Andrew Wiggins’ commitment, pundits seemed skeptical about the Big 12’s prospects this year. The Big 12 underperformed in the NCAA […]

Ashworth: Sims should be remembered as Kansas great

Ashworth: Sims should be remembered as Kansas great

Failing to win a conference game this year wouldn’t have been fair to the Kansas fans who have maintained loyalty in the face of mockery from opposing fans.  It wouldn’t have been fair to coach Charlie Weis, who despite poor results has labored to get his team to improve. It especially wouldn’t have been fair […]

Ashworth: Foul play means no play

Ashworth: Foul play means no play

A duck steps onto the basketball court and the ref cries “fowl!”  The duck looks inquisitively at the ref and responds, “I didn’t even touch him!” Cringe-worthy jokes aside, at times it seems that, like this duck, players are being called for fouls simply for being on the court. In Kansas’ closer-than-expected victory over Louisiana-Monroe, […]

Ashworth: Tough early schedule hurts Kansas football

Ashworth: Tough early schedule hurts Kansas football

The scheduling committee did Kansas football no favors by saving its easiest games for the end of the season. At Kansas, a reasonable goal for the football team year in and year out is to have momentum going into basketball season. If Jayhawk fans are still interested in football at the time of Kansas’ first […]

Ashworth: Exhibition game important for bench players

Ashworth: Exhibition game important for bench players

Kansas basketball has a problem. It’s a problem any head coach would want to have, but a problem nonetheless. Coach Bill Self will have two or three top 100 recruits who will rarely see the court. The exhibition games will determine which players become key contributors and which players will need to wait their turns. […]

Ashworth: Weis unable to make halftime adjustments

Ashworth: Weis unable to make halftime adjustments

Many consider Charles Dickens’ magnum opus to be “A Tale of Two Cities.” Coach Charlie Weis is working on a book himself about the Big 12 conference season. It is titled “A Tale of Two Halves.” So far, it hasn’t been well-received. The second half of games have not been good for Weis. The Oklahoma […]

Ashworth: Homecoming weekend shows importance of basketball

Ashworth: Homecoming weekend shows importance of basketball

Lawrence is a basketball town.  History supports that conclusion. This weekend solidified it. Homecoming is scheduled in order to make football the centerpiece of the weekend.  At most schools around the country during their respective homecoming weekends, the stadiums fill to capacity, with people fighting for seats like hungry carp fighting for a piece of […]

Ashworth: Benching poses positives and negatives for football team

Ashworth: Benching poses positives and negatives for football team

Charlie Weis notably compared his 2012 squad to a “pile of crap,” asking the media, “If you can’t play here, where can you play?” Weis wasn’t outright promising playing time to prized recruits in that slightly off-color statement, but he was certainly suggesting that his best recruiting pitch is the opportunity to contribute immediately. However, […]