The 2008–09 Kansas Jayhawks men’s basketball team represented the University of Kansas in the 2008-09 NCAA Division I men’s basketball season, the Jayhawks’ 111th basketball season. The Head Coach was Bill Self, serving his 6th year. The team played its home games in Allen Fieldhouse in Lawrence, Kansas, and were the defending National Champions.
The 2007–08 Jayhawks finished the season 37–3 overall with a 13–3 mark in conference play. They won the Big 12 regular season men’s basketball championship, which they shared with the Texas Longhorns. In post season play, the Jayhawks won the Big 12 conference tournament championship and received a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament. The team went on to win the national championship, 75–68, in overtime vs. the Memphis Tigers. The Jayhawks finished the season #1 in the final Coaches Poll after the tournament and were ranked 5th in the final AP Poll before the tournament.The team raised a temporary NCAA Men’s Division I Basketball Championship banner to the rafters in an official ceremony to celebrate its 2008 NCAA Men’s Division I Basketball Tournament victory during Late Night in the Phog event. The official championship and final four banners were raised during the November 18 game against Florida Gulf Coast.
The Jayhawks lost five scholarship seniors from their national title team in addition to three underclassmen (Brandon Rush, Mario Chalmers, and Darrell Arthur) who opted to enter the NBA draft and eventually signed with agents. Returning from the national championship team are stars Sherron Collins, point guard, and Cole Aldrich, center. Other players returning are: seniors Matt Kleinmann and Brennan Bechard, and sophomores Brady Morningstar, Chase Buford, Tyrel Reed, and Connor Teahan.