LAWRENCE, Kan. (WIBW) - Mitch Lightfoot states it pretty plainly.
"There is a switch," the junior said. "You got to flip it and understand this is for real. This is what really matters."
At Kansas, that intensity comes with the start of conference play. And that beginning might mean more at KU than any other program in the country.
When the Jayhawks take on No. 23 Oklahoma at Allen Fieldhouse on Wednesday night, it will start their quest for a 15th-straight Big 12 regular-season title. It's a feat that's unmatched in collegiate athletics.
"Many players came before us to set the tone for the streak," guard Charlie Moore said. "So it's very unique. It's just us, like I said, going into every game executing plays."
Moore is one of the Jayhawks who will be new to one of the toughest conferences in college basketball. Bill Self has been through plenty of new faces adjusting to league competition, but said he hasn't talked much with this group about what it takes to stay on top.
The longtime KU head coach does have an idea though of how he wants his team to approach Big 12 play.
"You need to be even-keeled," Self said. "There will be peaks and valleys but they don't need to be spikes. They don't need to be like the December market. It needs to be something that you kind of grind through it, but you can't pass up opportunities to take advantage of good nights, good situations."
You can hear more from Self, Lightfoot and Moore in the video at the top of the page.