March 21, 2007

Season's end reveals progress of program

Bob Huggins emerged from the Bramlage Coliseum tunnel to a roar from the of remaining fans. Kansas State's NIT game against DePaul, not to mention the entire season, ended about 20 minutes earlier, but thousands of fans refused to leave.

Listening to Huggins' postgame radio show from inside Bramlage is now a tradition many fans enjoy, but this one felt different. The Wildcats' disappointing 70-65 loss to DePaul on Monday nightended their season, but as Huggins sauntered toward Voice of the Wildcats Wyatt Thompson along the sideline, the finality of Huggins' first season as K-State's coach hung heavy.

"It seems hard to believe it's over," Huggins would tell Thompson. "Some years you can't wait for it to be over, but not this one."

Huggins comment somehow summed up the feelings of most K-State fans. By the end of basketball seasons in Manhattan, Kan., most are exhausted by a roller-coaster ride that left them unfulfilled.

This season was different, not just because K-State reached postseason play for the first since 1999, but because everyone wanted the season to continue. This team was fun to watch.

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