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Kansas at West Virginia coverage

Kansas defeats West Virginia, 61-56

  • 8 p.m., Jan. 28, 2013
  • WVU Coliseum, Morgantown, WV

FINAL: KU overcomes sloppy play in 61-56 win over West Virginia

Jeff Withey and Travis Releford scored 15 points apiece, helping the Kansas men's basketball team to a 61-56 victory over West Virginia on Monday night in Morgantown, W.Va.

WVU (9-11, 2-5 Big 12) closed it to 61-56 with 24 seconds left, but Withey blocked two shots before Releford came away with the defensive rebound as KU ran out the clock.

KU, which won its 18th straight game, held on despite not having in a field goal in the final 6:15.

Releford produced his points on 7-for-9 shooting, while Withey was 6-for-8.

The Jayhawks made 20 of 34 field goals (54 percent), which helped them overcome a poor ball-handling night (16 turnovers).

Ben McLemore added 13 points for KU.

The Jayhawks (19-1, 7-0) will play host to Oklahoma State at 3 p.m. Saturday.

Box score

Comments

jaybate 8 years, 1 month ago

I still think we saw a pretty artful job of muddying it up by Huggs.

Michael Bratisax 8 years, 1 month ago

I think KU gets full credit for their efforts tonight.

BCRavenJHawkfan 8 years, 1 month ago

No doubt. And isn't it amazing how Self is able to essentially say "I'll see your mud ball and raise you one play ground ball" and still win.

John Randall 8 years, 1 month ago

Huggy made us win it from the line – but we refused half of them.

HawksWin 8 years, 1 month ago

A good summary on how Huggs muddy it up - "If you missed it, he had a pretty good game plan. Took away passes on the weave set, took Withey away from the paint on D and shut down Bmac. The guy can coach. He just doesn't have the guns." by jksport on KU Message Board

nuleafjhawk 8 years, 1 month ago

It boggles the mind how a team can be so consistently good on defense and so incredibly crappy on offense. And, as it does so many years, free-throw shooting will be our ultimate demise.

Michael Bratisax 8 years, 1 month ago

"And, as it does so many years, free-throw shooting will be our ultimate demise."

If there is one constant that all KU teams seem to struggle with is free throws in tight games.

ironhead80 8 years, 1 month ago

How manytimes have they lost this year because of free throw shooting? Get your head out!

Michael Bratisax 8 years, 1 month ago

Really no need for being rude ironhead. We are all Jayhawks and difference of opinion is not meant as a personal attack.

You might remember the 2003 championship game against Syracuse where we lost by three points after going 12 of 30 at the line (if you were a fan back then). When we lost to VCU, we were 15 of 28.

18 of 34 (and many of those being the front end of a 1 and 1) will not help you win a championship.

hawk_of_ages 8 years, 1 month ago

Free throws will be our ultimate demise? The only time that happened was in 2003, under a different coach.

Michael Bratisax 8 years, 1 month ago

15 of 28 against VCU? I'm not going to go back checking all our NCAA losses but I'm willing to bet that there are many others do to poor shooting at the free-throw line.

hawk_of_ages 8 years, 1 month ago

I think 2 for 23 from beyond the arc was the more eyebrow-raising stat vs. VCU -- especially considering what a great 3-point shooting team we'd been all year to that point.

Either way, I don't think we're a bad FT-shooting team this year overall. We just weren't good tonight. It was troubling, to be sure, but seems like an aberration rather than the rule with this team. (I do wish Withey was shooting them as well as he did last season).

Michael Bratisax 8 years, 1 month ago

Yes... That is the most telling stat. We just couldn't seem to get a single friendly bounce.

My sister works at VCU and my wife's sister went to Syracuse. As much as I hate Kentucky, at least I don't know anyone connected to the school.

MrPilot 8 years, 1 month ago

Good road win at an unfamiliar facility. But we really, really need to work on passing and free throws.

That being said, Rock Chalk Jayhawk! Welcome to the Big 12, WVU!

Pitthawk34 8 years, 1 month ago

This is the worst offensive KU team that I have seen in years. Difficult to watch. NO WAY we beat Oklahoma on the road and that is sad. Preparing for a early exit without a doubt.

theend 8 years, 1 month ago

100% wrong. Did you notice that we won the game?

theend 8 years, 1 month ago

Everyone chill.....we won....we're 19-1!!! And give other teams credit......they scout KU and can play. Dont get spoiled, KU fans.

Michael Bratisax 8 years, 1 month ago

18 of 34 FTs? 16 TOs to 12 assists? A total of five points off the bench?

This type of effort will get you bounced early in the NCAA. The Big 12 is not very strong this year and we seem to continually struggle with turnovers and lack of consistency. I'm glad we won but we beat a subpar opponent.

theend 8 years, 1 month ago

I don't look at it that way.....I see us playing poor but still winning. That's what matters and it's teams like this that will do well in March

Michael Bratisax 8 years, 1 month ago

I usually would agree. I've always thought that you learn more from winning close games than you can ever learn from losing. I don't want to see us lose but something needs to happen so that we regain the focus we had earlier in the season. This is a team that dominated Ohio State on the road. West Virginia is nowhere near as good as Ohio State.

theend 8 years, 1 month ago

True. But remember KU ALWAYS gets everyone's best shot. They get so hyped up for these away games.....it's tough. Plus good coaches preapre well for KU.

Michael Bratisax 8 years, 1 month ago

Very true.. but I think our toughest opponent tonight was ourselves. I've got the feeling that we will see a different team Saturday against Oklahoma.

theend 8 years, 1 month ago

I definitely agree on too many turnovers!! Many unforced too.

tdscpa 8 years, 1 month ago

How can we decompose this badly during two winter months? Should be mummified.

nuleafjhawk 8 years, 1 month ago

If we are as sloppy with the ball on Saturday as we were tonight, Marcus Smart will have 15 steals by himself.

Duane Rice 8 years, 1 month ago

1380 posts on the live coverage. 1000 were about the uniforms whether you liked them or not they got us talking. Shoe companies win again.

DanR 8 years, 1 month ago

How do shoe companies win? I'll never buy crappy nike gear ever again.

Al Martin 8 years, 1 month ago

If that's sarcasm, you have my utmost respect.

DanR 8 years, 1 month ago

I want to make sure the comment-counting KU sports department shoe-whores can't brag about how much buzz those tradition-defaming uniforms created... for the PUMA brand.

John Randall 8 years, 1 month ago

Then we're stuck with Adidas forever? I have to wonder if they were poking fun at Nike for the Neon Look last year, or just hoping drab will be the next fad.

jayhawkinATL 8 years, 1 month ago

Had my fill of games in the 60s.....BOOOOOOOOORING.

riverdrifter 8 years, 1 month ago

I know we should never complain about win- oh, excuse me, be right back; {gag, choke, projectile vomit, bleah}. Oh, where was I? Oh, yes. we won. Past Kansas teams would've blown this game wide open with about 8-10 minutes to go in the first half. This team can't do that. "May you live in interesting times."

KUfanInFlorida 8 years, 1 month ago

Terrible game, but a win is a win. Withey got a couple more blocks on that last possession.

theend 8 years, 1 month ago

From the comments.....you would think KU lost badly. I really dont care ......they won. They always win. That's what matters

fansincewilt 8 years, 1 month ago

I do not have a lot of hope for the offense. I think it is possible that Self is just focusing on defense since the offense is so bad. Yet, when a team has a player to take Withey out to the perimeterit iis a problem for us. We only gave up 55 points to this team. That is good. We only gave them two free throws in the second half. That is outstanding. Overall, our defensive game was very good. I just can't figure out the turnovers. I wish someone could explain why we turn the ball over so much.

hawk_of_ages 8 years, 1 month ago

The offense really isn't so bad considering we shot 54 percent against a Huggins team. We were just careless with the ball in stretches, and we were uncharacteristically bad at the free throw line in this one.

Sam Constance 8 years, 1 month ago

I can.

It's because they have no concept of the idea of a crisp pass, nor a pass fake. They throw lazy, arcing passes around the perimeter, and unless they recognize that it's a consistent problem and actively fix it, it's only going to get worse as teams recognize that we do it. I feel like more KU opponents have tried and succeeded at shooting the gap on our perimeter passes than anytime in recent memory.

They get too lackadaisical in two areas: passing and transition defense

Tony Bandle 8 years, 1 month ago

To do list for tomorrow:

1] Burn all fade out uniforms.

2] Burn all tapes and recordings of this game.

3] Make note of this refereeing crew and never take the court again if these three chuckleheads are there, . 4] Introduce Huggy Bear to Slimfast diet plan.

5] Introduce Jayhawks to the foul line using the film clip of Coach Dale from "Hoosiers".

6] I guess that's the last time we see AWIII for awhile.

7] The Mush-Burger was kind when he said good teams know how to win when they play badly. Brent, the real truth is really good teams know how to win by NOT PLAYING BADLY!!

8] Jayhawk checklist: turnovers, check...bad fouls, check...poor free throw shooting,check....ugly offense, check...lazy passes, check....still win the game, check.

Tony Bandle 8 years, 1 month ago

PS This game presented the preview of when we get bounced early from the NCAA Tourney if the Hawks don't tighten it down!!! One good point made by an earlier poster, however...last year, we lose this game!!

Michael Bratisax 8 years, 1 month ago

Unfortunately I agree that AW3 might have used up his opportunities this season but I still believe he is going to be a major contributor in the future.

We only scored a total of five points from the bench, so it's not like he got pushed further down the bench. Rio hasn't helped himself much of late either. I think it's possible that one of these players might transfer but I hope neither does. Getting a lot of playing time as a freshman is not very common under HCBS.

If they look at past players such as Travis then they should realize if they keep pushing hard under the coaching of Coach Self, they will earn their time on the floor. No free passes under Self.

kubballgal 8 years, 1 month ago

Free throws are FREE! The score would have looked a lot different if we made the free throws!

MrPilot 8 years, 1 month ago

I do love one of the announcers' comments early in the game (re: WVU): "This team is scrappy, they're just not that talented."

Pitthawk34 8 years, 1 month ago

That is a polite way of saying the suck but play hard. This should have been double figures. The pattern is getting real serious folks.

DanR 8 years, 1 month ago

Agree with everything you said (except I kind of like having Huggins in the Big 12 mix). I'm pretty sure that Self knows he can get 60 points a game from this team, so his ENTIRE game plan is to keep the opponents under that. It's not pretty, but the guys believe in it too. And then there's Withey blocking everything in the last 30 seconds.

Paul Christiansen 8 years, 1 month ago

We need to really tighten up our passing going down the court! But, I'll take the Win. Defense is tough.

flyingfinn 8 years, 1 month ago

I fully agree with the last comment, lighten up people we are 19-1!!!! Yes we have been so-so offensively but if you look around the country there just are not a lot of high scoring games period. The Big Ten which is supposed to be strong this year has had many games in the 60's and even 50's. I would rather win ugly and have one of the best defenses in the country because defense wins come tourney time....look at our team last year, we won a lot of low scoring games.

theend 8 years, 1 month ago

Exactly! We're 19-1 and supposedly playing like %$%^???????? I'll take that any day!!

theend 8 years, 1 month ago

Everyone remember........KU ALWAYS gets everyone's best shot. They give EVERYTHING to try to beat KU........So do their fans. And yet KU still wins! Be happy we won......and are 19-1.......it's pretty amazing. Think about it.

dehawk 8 years, 1 month ago

Hi all, This is my first time posting, but I have been reading everyone's posts for years. I had to finally come on to say that until we get more offense from our bench, don't expect too much better from our starters. These guys are just tired. If they could sit for longer stretches of relief, then they would have the enegry we want to see. Today we had the early lead and CS put in our bench and they didn't help us on offense. So the starters have to play too much of the game. Look at the box score. Until the bench can produce more on offense, expect to see tired legs from the starters and a little less focus. I can take an ugly win but I am really hoping the bench will start to help out more.

Michael Bratisax 8 years, 1 month ago

I agree... tonight we only scored five points off the bench. Perry Ellis is easily the best player coming off the bench and would be starting at probably 90% of Division I teams. He needs to get aggressive. He has far too much talent to only put up four points and Andrew White, supposedly the best player out of Virginia last year is stuck in a major scoring slump.

We need these guys to step it up.

RockChalkOhio 8 years, 1 month ago

I think it's those new unis that are responsible for all the turnovers tonight. Any KU win is a good win, but please go back to the familiar unis.

Robert Murphy 8 years, 1 month ago

This is the number 1 team in the nation? Has college basketball gotten this pathetic? Glad I didn't pay any real money to watch this. Are we practicing too much? They looked totally unfocused. Can someone please teach them how to make free throws. Stop throwing the ball away. Sloppy, sloppy, sloppy. Worst game in a long time.

RedJay 8 years, 1 month ago

Vegas has to be beside themselves. We'll be 18-1, ranked 2nd in the nation, and playing on a court where we've won 102 of our last 103, and we'll be 5 1/2 pt favorites against OKSTATE. With an over/under of 113.

theend 8 years, 1 month ago

I have come to accept that KU is not great offensively...not great shooters......and?????

We're 19-1.......#1 in the nation. Nobody says we have to be great offensively......Is it a rule? If we win the NC and are terrible offensively all the way thru March........Ummmmmm......I'll take it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Michael Bratisax 8 years, 1 month ago

A rule...none that I know of but I think you would agree that we are playing our best when we get out into transition and run. We played somewhere around 5-7 games that we looked really good offensively and now we've played a few where we have had too many turnovers and haven't been able to run and put the game away early.

Starting from the Washington State game and continuing until we played Temple, I thought we played our best basketball this year. Granted that conference play is a lot different but we haven't broke 70 points since we played Texas Tech.

I'm not smart enough to account for the reason. I wonder if EJ is more injured than has been reported or if the starters are playing a lot more minutes as bench production has declined or conference play is just that much harder. It's probably due to several factors.

But as you say "If we win the NC and are terrible offensively all the way thru March........Ummmmmm......I'll take it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!" and I will too.

Hank Cross 8 years, 1 month ago

Hard on the eyes for sure. But, some of this play has to do with the level of comp. Having only one other team in the conference that is currently ranked is weak.

Chad DeShazo 8 years, 1 month ago

I sent a nasty-gram to Adidas about these uniforms. Maybe if enough of us complain, they'll get the hint: Consumer Relations 1-800-448-1796 consumer.relations@adidas.com

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