Very few schools can say they've made it to the Final Four of March Madness. Even fewer can say that they've stormed the streets downtown after a game with the support of the police force. And only one can say that they've created the sport of basketball. But we as Jayhawks can proudly say that we've done it all.
As a Jayhawk, the month of March is like a holiday all its own. Every game is greeted with more enthusiasm than the last, more crazy antics, and more support from the surrounding community. Professors cancel classes, move tests, and plan entire lessons around games. Meetings are canceled, and downtown streets become closed to traffic all in anticipation of another win.
There's something about being a Jayhawk that just cannot be explained. The passion for the game, the support for our team, the love for our school, it is something unlike any other. Sure everyone loves the month of March. The weather gets warmer, basketball fans get to share their excitement for the tournament. But at KU, it just means something more. It is a month that brings our community together. It is a time to share in the love, pride, and true glory of the school.
All across the country, when we pass another Jayhawk, you are sure to hear the well-known exchange of "Rock Chalk!" "Jayhawk!" Strangers who have never met will pass works of encouragement, and chat about the upcoming games. We are all one community, we are a Jayhawk family.
Allen Fieldhouse, our basketball arena, is like its own community. We proudly hold the record for the loudest roar at an indoor sports event at over 130 decibels. By comparison, that is comparable to a military jet take off.
After the Elite Eight win, hundreds of fans gathered in the stadium for hours, waiting to welcome our team back home. Together, we rewatched the game with as much excitement as if it were going live. The amount of energy contained in the space is indescribable.
When the team finally arrived well after 11 at night, the love and spirit the fans showered them with was immeasurable. As Bill Self and each of his team members spoke, we fans held on to every last word, taking in the glory of their success.
For the Final Four game, the school has opened the Fieldhouse free to all students and the public, and will project the game on the screen for us to all watch together. Tensions are sure to be high as we gather together to support our team. This moment will be a part of history, and it is a moment that I will forever be proud to have been a part of. Together, we laugh, together we cry.
After all, win or lose, we are all proud Jayhawks!