A lifelong Kansas Jayhawks fan named Don Shoulberg passed away on Tuesday at the age of 76. Shoulberg studied at Kansas and earned his PhD at the university in Speech Communication and Human Relations. Why do we feel confident that he was such an avid Jayhawks fan? Because if not, I highly doubt his family would be planning his memorial service around the tipoff of an NCAA Tournament game. The following is from Shoulberg’s obituary:
A Prayer Service will be at 5 p.m. Friday, March 29, 2013 at the mortuary followed by a visitation until tipoff time for the K.U. basketball game (approx. 6:30 p.m.).”
Yes, this is very much real life. Those of us you who don’t understand clearly can’t comprehend the type of connection some people in Kansas feel with their college basketball team. As The Dagger pointed out, a friend who signed Shoulberg’s guestbook online helped shed a bit more light onto the subject.
Most of our interaction occurred on the office elevator and our conversations almost always focused on KU basketball. I understand why the visitation will end before our tip off against Michigan. Don’s steading hand will be a significant factor in our attempt to knock off Michigan in continuing our quest.”
Suddenly, I find myself rooting for Bill Self and company. They will face a tough test against Michigan’s loaded backcourt, but on paper the Jayhawks have the edge. If Kansas comes out on top, my bracket takes another hit. But I wouldn’t mind seeing them win one for Shoulberg.
And hey, at least the deceased is remembering his favorite team in a positive light. Remember what this Chiefs fan’s obituary said? Or how about the dude that wanted out because the Broncos signed a player he hated? In loving his team so much that he didn’t want people to miss them play, Shoulberg showed that he is on the opposite end of the spectrum.