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A leap year win for Kansas State and no shadow to be seen on Groundhog Day
At the Mike
At the Mike.jpg

Okay, as much as I would like to just pretend it didn’t happen, it did. Kansas State beat KU in basketball. Much like leap year, about a once every four year thing.

Thing is, right now K-State is just the better team. Period. As a Jayhawk fan, I can hope this eventually changes. But I am not going to hold my breath. If this KU teams wins even a share of the Big 12 title, it will be the most amazing coaching job in Bill Self’s career.

The Hawks are 6-4 in the Big 12. The last time that happened? How about when Apple Computer released it’s first Macintosh. OJ Simpson was riding in white Bronco while the entire country watched. Major Baseball went on a strike and there was no World Series. My wife was in high school.

The year was 1994. Yep, it’s been 25 years since KU was 6-4 in the conference. And it was the Big 8 conference still.

Oh well, the season isn’t over yet. Or is it? Nah, I won’t give up. As I sat and watched the game Tuesday and wondered to myself ESPN does that stupid cross over things between college and NBA announcers, I loved the atmosphere in Bramlage.

I’m happy for Dean Wade. Well, as happy as I can be. I’m all for crazy fans and rushing the court. I’m all for signs that make poke fun at your opponents, especially if it’s a rival. But the sign that said ‘We own this state’, really?

Anyway, now let’s see if K-State can win with the pressure on. If they can, the Big 12 title is K-State’s to lose.

Stay tuned.

Prep Thoughts

Things are moving fast and furious now that February is here for the local prep teams. Let’s hand out some kudos this week to a couple of those teams.

How about the Larned boys’ basketball team. The Indians are on a roll. They picked up a huge win Tuesday with a 57-52 road win over Haven in CKL play. It was the first loss for Haven in league play. Larned is now 4-1 in the CKL and 10-5 overall. Chance Sanger went off in the win for 31 points on 7 3-pointers against Haven.

It’s a strong group of juniors for Coach Jerrod Smith but they are showing it is not a wait until next year team. The Indians still have five games left before the Southwestern Heights Sub State. Currently the Indians, Scott City and Hugoton are battling for that top seed.

Then there’s the Central Plains girls reaching the 100-game winning streak. Now at 101 with the Oilers latest win. The state record is 107 by Hoxie. Soon that will be the second longest streak.

Stay tuned.

And Finally

So Groundhog Day has come and gone. Punxsutawney Phil predicted an early spring. They, whomever they are, say he gets his predictions right about 35-40 percent of the time.

That leaves me with some questions. What exactly is an ‘early spring’? Is it just for Pennsylvania? Is it nationwide? Besides Caddyshack was Groundhog Day Bill Murray’s best movie?

One thing of note is that of the 103 predictions Phil has made only 19 times has he called for an early spring – including this year. Of those predictions he was right about half the time. But is that for Pennsylvania or where?

There are several Groundhogs Day events around the nation that make predictions. The Kansas City Zoo has a hedgehog that makes predictions. They have done this for several years. The latest is named Tater.

So I decided to do my own event. Now, we do have a couple hedgehogs and even a cat named Tater, but I decided to have our dog Waffle step up and be my prognosticator.

Why not? Isn’t this why we have pets. To get enjoyment out of them. Who doesn’t have a Christmas sweater or two for their dog? Who doesn’t have a Halloween costume or two for their dog? Maybe even some bunny ears for Easter.

How about a Roman candle holder for the Fourth of July? Okay, just kidding on that one. That is the one holiday dogs would like to skip. Just give them a blanket on the couch to crawl up in or under and they are good. But the other things we do have for/do to our dogs.

So I took Waffle to the back deck and had him sit down Saturday morning, Groundhog Day. I am calling him Waffle the Greek.

Waffle sat and I observed. No shadow. Therefore I have declared winter over. Never mind the ice we are currently experiencing. Waffle predicted an ‘early spring’. So it shall be.

I am at least sure of this – to date Waffle has never missed a prediction. Never.

Just a couple of notes on the inaugural Waffle the Greek Groundhog Day ceremony.

One, it was not a First Annual event. There is no such thing. Katelyn just got something from a 4-year college that says it’s holding a First Annual function. Made me cringe. Although we may have a Second Annual next year.

Two, no, I did not pick him up and hold him above my head like they do the groundhog. He weighs like 40 pounds. And doesn’t like to be picked up.

Three, Waffle enjoyed the festivities and got a treat when we were done (just in case PETA thinks I did something wrong).

Now, let’s see how good of a prognosticator he is.

Once again, stay tuned.

Mike Marzolf is a guest columnist for the Great Bend Tribune and his views don’t necessarily reflect those of the paper. He can be reached at