March 22, 2007
KU Headed To Elite Eight
Bill Self and the Kansas Jayhawks are headed to the Elite Eight. Despite having just one player, Brandon Rush (12), score in double-figures, Kansas, the top seed in the West Region, defeated the Southern Illinois Salukis, 61-58. Self's squad will anxiously await the winner of tonights Sweet 16 battle between UCLA and Pittsburgh. KU is just one win away from advancing to the Final Four.
"I thought the game went exactly as the coaches' thought it would," said Self. "It was a grind-it-out game and we were very fortunate to win. We played a very well coached, tough basketball team that can play with anybody, anywhere.
"We feel very fortunate tonight," he added.
Thursday nights Sweet 16 showdown between Kansas and Southern Illinois played out just as many had expected. For much of the game, both teams labored to score and couldn't get anything going on the offensive end of the court.
However, that didn't appear to be the case early on. The Jayhawks jumped out to a 10-2 lead with a little more than 15:00 minutes left in the first half. From that point on, both defenses took control of the game.
Southern Illinois took its first lead, 24-21, late in the first half, but Kansas quickly responded and led, 27-24, at the half.
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