No condescending Rock Chalk Jayhawk chant to listen to this year. No talk of moral victories.

Joy. Just plain joy.

For once it was Colorado doing the reveling.

CU students nearly trampled each other during a stampede down the Coors Events Center stairs Saturday afternoon to celebrate on the court the Buffs' buzzer-beater 75-72 win over No. 6 Kansas.

Season-ticket holders, who have been coming to games here for decades, hugged and high-fived each other after Askia Booker's shot hit home. There have been so many frustrating losses to the Jayhawks over the years. Saturday's outcome was a catharsis.

But there was no one in the building who showed more emotion celebrating this triumph than an old Jayhawk who happened to have access to the Colorado locker room. Actually, he has the keys.

About 10 minutes after Booker's shot ripped through nylon, a group of CU donors walked into the home team's locker room with former Denver Broncos quarterback John Elway in tow. They entered just as coach Tad Boyle completed his remarks to his players. Boyle, who played for Kansas, embraced booster George Solich like a long-lost war buddy. He pumped his fist. I thought he might cry.

This was a cornerstone win, a program builder.

The Buffs have had plenty of big victories in the three full seasons Boyle has been coaching in Boulder, but only one of them can compare with this. The 2012 Pac-12 championship win over Arizona.

And even that can't compare when it comes to relieving years of frustration.


"The takeaway is we can beat anybody in the Coors Events Center,' Boyle said. "If we can beat Kansas here, they're a good road team, they're a tough team. They're a well-coached team. That's the takeaway."

The temptation might be to end the series here for awhile. The Buffs and Jayhawks used to meet home and away each year and sometimes in the conference tournament when they both called the Big Eight and Big 12 home.

Boyle and Kansas coach Bill Self agreed to a home-and-home series two years ago after the Buffs left for the Pac-12 Conference. Boyle said he will likely have a discussion with Self at some point about continuing the series maybe as soon as next year.

He ought to. Saturday was too much fun not to do it. And now CU can choose to schedule the Jayhawks not because it's a big money game with a full house, but because it's an opportunity for a resume-building win.

Boyle and his assistants and players over the past four seasons have turned Boulder into a road trip to be feared. It might be a tougher sell for Self this time. Sure, there were still patches of blue in the arena Saturday and they were heard from at times in the game, but Self said it best.

"This used to be a home game for us," he said. "It wasn't like that at all tonight."

And there is no reason to think it will be again any time soon.

Boyle said he was thrilled for CU fans finally being able to celebrate a victory over his alma mater, but he also talked during his postgame press conference about how CU fans must now grow with their program.

"I want our fans to understand it's not about Kansas. It's about Colorado," he said. "That's where we have to get as a program. That's where we need to go. Where our fans expect us, not hope for us, but expect us to win these games and understand that Kansas is no different than Oregon State or Arizona or UCLA.

"When they come to follow the Buffs and see how the Buffs are going to play that day not who the Buffs are playing that day, that's when I'll know we've gotten this program to where we need it to be. We still have work to do when it comes to that."

He has a point, but he also has to understand -- and I think he does -- that CU had to get that win over Kansas and exercise that demon in order for fans to be able to move beyond the hang up with the Jayhawks.

The win has come. The time has arrived.

Contact staff writer Kyle Ringo at or