FOR THE LOVE OF GOD WHEN WILL THEY STOP TORTURING ME? Once again, the Jayhawks exited the NCAA tournament in the first round; this time, it was a 77–73 loss to Bradley, marking the second year in a row in which the heavily-favored Hawks were up-ended by a lower seed.What the hell went wrong? Bradley came out loose and snappy; the Hawks looked spooked and tight. A couple of unlucky early possessions tipped the momentum toward Bradley, and you could see the Hawks get somewhat prematurely discouraged and frustrated. Up until the very late second half, the vaunted Jayhawk defense — which had created easy offensive opportunities all year — struggled to keep up with Bradley's relentless inside-out attack. All year, Kansas had locked down their opponents, forcing bad shots and racing it right back up their opponents' backside. This time, they played Bradley's game for almost 40 minutes.The most confounding part was that they seemed so out of sync. The stars from the Texas game fell victim to the fumbles and hiccups that characterized the early season. Julian Wright disappeared for minutes on end; Mario Chalmers couldn't get anything to fall in the first half; Sasha Kaun's shots got some tough treatment by the rim, and then, man, what happened? And JHawk, well, you just knew that he wouldn't repeat the 4‑for‑5 shooting from three point range. Without RussRob, the Hawks would have never been in the game.Nevertheless, late in the second half, Self went with three guards, and the sudden, swarming defensive pressure paralyzed Bradley's offense. Chalmers and Robinson created turnovers, shredded Bradley's defense and — BAM — we got a quick glimpse of what could have been a 25-point cakewalk on another night. The Hawks just totally overwhelmed the Bradley backcourt for the last 7 or 8 minutes, and improbably the game was within reach.Then, heartbreak. The Hawks created another turnover, and brought the ball upcourt, down by three with a little over a minute left. Hawkins comes around a screen. He's got an open look. DUDE, KNOCK IT DOWN! It looks good when it leaves his hands. The ball is arc-ing toward the basket. I'm in a hotel room in Albuquerque, standing on the bed with my arms raised in three-point/field goal formation, and I'm remembering the Missouri game from 2003 when Aaron Miles hit a long, contested three as time ran out to win the game, WHICH I ALSO WATCHED FROM A HOTEL ROOM! SYNCHRONICITY! and I'm not breathing, and my heart is pounding GO IN for God's sake! NO! Rebound! NOOO!Alas.Was it worse than last year? I would say yes. Last year's team partially imploded in the late season, limped out of the Big 12 tournament, and rolled over somewhere en route to their first round game. This year's team, though. I don't think I was the only one who was having visions of the Fab Five dancing in my head. For days after, I mourned both my bracket (in shambles), and what could have been a victory over Pitt, a domination of Memphis, and a rocking good game against UCLA. LSU would have been a problem. Within seven or eight feet of the basket, they were tough; outside of that, inept. Could the Hawks have stopped them enough in the paint for that to matter? Perhaps.