Lawrence, KS is my hometown. It’s not the town where I was born. It’s not the town where I grew up. But it’s definitely the town where I grew into myself, which I think is true for many transplants.

Maybe you came here because it’s one of the few progressive towns in the state (that’s not to excuse the great deal of work that still needs to be done to make our actions meet our beliefs about how cool and inclusive we are here). Maybe you came here because of the proximity to Kansas City without the price tag. Or, maybe, you’re a college basketball fan—then we all know why you came here.

If college Basketball is your religion, Lawrence is your holy land. Allen Field House is your house of worship. James Naismith is your patron saint. And for the last 16 years, Bill Self has been your prophet.

Not all who kneel at the altar of Basketball live in Lawrence. There are multitudes who regularly make the pilgrimage from points afar.

Home to the University of Kansas, Lawrence is definitely a college town, and because of the history of basketball at KU, Lawrence is definitely a basketball town.

When the men’s basketball team is winning, we are winning as a community. When they are not winning, a cloud of collective depression settles over us all until the tide turns or the next season begins.

Last year was one of those years where there was a lot of individual talent on the floor, but the team never quite coalesced in the way fans would have liked. This year, it looks like both the women’s and men’s teams have a lot of potential.

No matter how the season goes, the True Believers will gather at the Field House, in restaurants and bars around town, or in the basements of friends, basking in the glory of Hope Eternal and lifting the hymn ever skyward, “Rock Chalk, Jayhawk!”

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