The Oz Blog View about stuff while living in the Land of Oz


Is the Border War Really Over?

  How did the Border War even start? Well let's go back and look at history. Before the Civil War, men from Missouri would go across the state line into Kansas and tried to stop Kansas from becoming a Free State. The men from Missouri would try and stake a claim right before a city would take a vote, those men would vote for Kansas to become a Slave State, and then go back to Missouri after the vote was over. This tactic did not work though and Kansas became a Free State. And of course we all know about the blood shed between the Jayhawkers and Raiders. This sporting rivalry goes far deeper than just two school that do not like each other like most other schools.

The rivalry is ending this year with the University of Missouri moving to the Southeastern Conference. The Universities of Kansas, Kansas State, and Missouri have all been in the same conference for a very long time. The fans from all of these teams do not get along with each other. And this past year has been a great year of goodbyes. In football this year, each state claimed a win, KSU 24 v MU 17, MU 24 @ KU 10. Then of course is men's basketball, the state of Kansas 3 - the state of Missouri 1. (KSU 75 v MU 59, KSU 78 @ MU 68; MU 74 - KU 71, KU 87 - MU 86 OT). These six games will be the end of an era.

There has been high drama is the two KU v MU basketball games. These two games have been two of the best in the series. We as fans can only hope for a third match up this season in the Big 12 tourney. The outcome of each game was to be expected, each team won because of home-court advantage. Let us see a game on a neutral court, that will be the true test between these two teams. This is one of the best coached and hardest working MU basketball teams that I have seen in years. You also very rarely see a team shoot free-throws that well. MU fans, you have a found a great coach and have a lot of success to look forward too. KU has turned around their season very nicely. After their loset to UK early in the season, I said that KU would not win more than 23 games this season. I have been pleasantly surprised by the Jayhawks this season.

Now too address the raging fans as a result of today's game from Allen Field-house. I still hold and will always hold that every single college basketball game is officiated unevenly. One team will get more of the 50/50 calls than the other team. With this premise goes a couple of thoughts on how a team gets those calls: 1) one teams has more prestige than the other, 2) one team has higher national ranking, 3) the official likes one coach more than the other coach, 4) which team is at playing at home. These are what I feel are the main factors that affect those close calls. The officials are human and will make mistakes, they will get caught up in the moment of the game, will hold a grudge against a person, or have more respect for one person.

With the officiating in mind, let us move to the game. When the Jayhawks and Tigers played in Columbia. MU was the team that was getting those close calls. Yet when the game was played in Lawrence, KU was the team that was getting the 50/50 calls. Although, just getting calls by the officials will not win a basketball game. At the end of both games, the team that won made the plays down the stretch. Fans from the losing teams both went crazy after each game and blamed the officiating. Yet, you do not want to claim victory thanks to the officiating. But at the same time people do not blame a loss on the officiating either.

When you blame the officials, you sound like a kid who loses at video games and blames the controller. Or the golfer who says his high handicap is because of his golf clubs. Our favorite teams lose games and will lose more games in the future. There has never been a team and will never been a team that goes unbeaten throughout the team's existence. Now, I am not saying to accept losing like David Glass. But these are just sports teams and they are just playing a game. If you want to rage over something, rage about the lack of coverage for our troops! Those men and women are awesome and do not get enough coverage from us.

Red Beards

*To the Ends of the Earth**

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