Go ‘Hawks

Jayhawks fans who still haven’t recycled the empty beer bottles from the University of Kansas’ national championship run in March are about to experience the true meaning of a hangover — a team that plays like it hit the taverns before it hit the court. This year’s title-defending squad looks more like the Bad News Bears than the team that mounted a stunning comeback against Memphis just seven months ago. Fortunately, basketball godhead Walter Matthau — er, Bill Self — figures to whip these ragamuffins into shape by the time the Big 12 season begins. Starting with a hard-fought victory over the UMKC Kangaroos, the young KU squad has proved at least to have the wherewithal to dispense with the annual warm-up slate of cupcake opponents. As they try to continue that trend tonight, the Jayhawks take on the Coppin State Eagles at 7 p.m. at Allen Fieldhouse (1651 Naismith Drive in Lawrence, 785-864-3141). A limited number of $55 tickets are available to the general public.

Fri., Nov. 28, 7 p.m., 2008