By Wendy Osher
Kansas will face Duke tomorrow night in the championship game of the EA SPORTS Maui Invitational basketball tournament. The Jayhawks beat the Bruins in a 72-56 win at the Lahaina Civic Center before a standing-room only crowd.
“I haven’t been here but three times and I would bet tomorrow night’s atmosphere for the final game will be as good an atmosphere as the building has ever seen for this tournament,” said Kansas Head Coach Bill Self. “I could be wrong, but you’re not going to be able to get all of your fans in,” said Self of the intimate 2,400 seat center.
Self estimated that the Kansas team brought well over 1,000 fans to Maui. “There’s something about this atmosphere that it may be as neutral a court atmosphere as you can play in–it’s better than NCAA tournament atmosphere because you can feel the crowd,” said Self.
“I think it will be a fun game tomorrow. Hopefully we’ll play really well. The atmosphere will be second to none, I would think in the history of the tournament,” said Self.
Senior guard, Tyshawn Taylor agreed saying, “When you come to Kansas, you sign up for this. This will is one of the big games that we’ll always remember–coming to Maui and playing Duke in the championship. I’m definitely excited for this,” said Taylor.
The championship game between Kansas and Duke will be played at 5 p.m. on Wednesday, November 23, 2011. UCLA will play for third place against Michigan at 2:30 p.m.