What's not to love about Bison?

March, 20, 2009
03/20/09
1:32
PM ET
MINNEAPOLIS -- If America didn't fall in love with North Dakota State before the NCAA tournament, it has now.

Unfortunately for the Bison, this love affair probably will last only 20 more minutes.

North Dakota State wasted no time showing Cinderella-like qualities against defending national champ Kansas.

In the opening seconds, center Lucas Moormann dove into the media table to save the ball, which zipped over to Mike Nelson for a 3-pointer.

Brett Winkelman then nearly stole the ball but couldn't save it as he dove into the Kansas cheerleaders, eliciting a huge roar from the crowd.

Whenever the shot clock got low, North Dakota State players counted down the final 10 seconds with the fans. Midway through the half, Winkelman saved a backcourt violation and the ball went to Ben Woodside for a 3-pointer.

What's not to love?

Woodside turned in a brilliant half, scoring 16 points and never leaving the court. But Sherron Collins (17 points) has been by far the best player on the court, lifting Kansas to a 43-34 lead.

A young Jayhawks team has handled a roadlike environment well, and Collins and Cole Aldrich (8 points, 4-of-5 shooting) are doing all they can to avoid the upset.

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