March 15, 2001

Sports Update

By Ben Brake

Kansas State Coach Jim Wooldridge is a real good coach but this seasonís record may not seem that impressive. If you take a close look at
the record it is probably better than what you might think. Wooldridge led the team to an 11-18 season 4-11 in the Big 12. These are not
eye-popping numbers by any means, but if you look at the big picture it wonít seem near as bad.

Jim Wooldridge took over a team that had gone 9-19 for the 1990-2000 season 2-12 in the Big 12, which was last in the conference. He had a
winning percentage of .379 compared to Tom Asburyís 1999-2000 final season of .321. Youíre probably thinking big deal he had a .058 better
winning percentage than former Coach Tom Asbury.

Well, if you look at the past 55 years only 3 coaches have come in and had a better record their first year than their predecessors last year.

You would probably have to guess that Jack Hartman and Tex Winter would have been the other two to have a better season their first year
than the last year record of the coaches they succeeded. Nope!

Would you believe that Jack Hartmanís successor Lon Kruger the current NBA Atlanta Hawks coach and former K-State coach and player
was the last one to have a better record his first year than his predecessors last year in the 1986-87 season. Before that you have to look clear
back to Jack Gardnerís second stint as the Wildcatís head coach in the 1946-47 season.

You have to realize that Coach Wooldridge is just getting to know his players and finding out what they are capable of doing. The players
are also learning about the new coach and a brand new system for the team. It takes time and practice to get everything to flow smooth.
Things are flowing smoother now than at the first of the year but they just need to get the consistency down and start winning the close
games.

Hang in there and wait to see how well the team does next year. I believe that everybody will see more improvement and be very pleased with
the outcome next year.

Have a Great Wildcat Day!