Sunday, January 20, 2008

KU twists Tigers’ tail

Jayhawks survive MU scare

Kansas guard Brandon Rush (25) signals Jayhawk ball before an enraged Missouri student section. The Jayhawks moved up to No. 2 in both major polls released Monday on the strength of their 76-70 victory Saturday in Columbia, Mo.

Kansas guard Brandon Rush (25) signals Jayhawk ball before an enraged Missouri student section. The Jayhawks moved up to No. 2 in both major polls released Monday on the strength of their 76-70 victory Saturday in Columbia, Mo.


Audio clips

2007-08 Jan. 19 KU-MU Men's Basketball

Go figure


Points scored by KU from the free-throw line in the second half


Points scored by KU in the second half


Points by which Kansas outscored MU from the free-throw line

28, 22

Free throws made by KU, free throws attempted by MU


Field goals attempted by the Tigers


Field goals attempted by the Jayhawks


Missed field goals by both teams combined (33 for KU, 44 for MU)


Rebounds by both teams combined (52 for KU, 43 for MU)

— Bundled up in his winter garb, a white and blue Kansas University stocking cap covering his ears, Brandon Rush was in a hurry to head out into the bitter cold and board the team bus Saturday night outside Mizzou Arena.

"I'm going to go text my brother. I will say I got him : again," Rush said with a grin.

He was referring to needling his brother, former Missouri player Kareem Rush, in the wake of the Jayhawks' 76-70 victory over the Tigers.

KU's Rush was in a great mood after defeating MU for the fourth time in five tries in his career and his second time in Columbia against a sole defeat his freshman year.

The 6-foot-6 Kansas Citian was not dwelling on the fact he missed 12 of 14 shots, including four threes without a make.

He preferred to focus on the fact he did make nine of 14 free throws - including four of six the final minute - and grabbed nine rebounds in helping KU keep its perfect season intact at 18-0, 3-0 in the Big 12 Conference.

"It was a little frustrating because my shot didn't go down," Rush said. "I tried to not pay too much attention to it. I tried to do my part rebounding and guarding Matt. He didn't shoot it too well, either."

Rush, whose nine rebounds were matched by Darrell Arthur and Darnell Jackson for team-high honors, held Matt Lawrence to a 2-for-10 game, including just one three in nine tries.

"I expected a grind-it-out game," Rush said of a game in which the defenses dominated.

Missouri (11-7, 1-2) hit just 38 percent of its shots, including five of 28 threes and 11 of 22 free throws. KU hit 40 percent of its shots, including four of 12 threes and 28 of 45 free throws.

"Missouri's defense confused us. They pressured us a lot, then they laid back in the 2-3 (zone). It was confusing, but we still managed to win the game," Rush said.

It was perhaps KU's toughest game of the season.

Missouri jumped to an early 7-1 lead, the Tigers' biggest lead of the game.

KU led by just two, 38-36, at halftime and never led by more than eight points - 64-56 - with seven minutes to play. MU couldn't creep closer than five, despite the fact the Jayhawks made one of two free throws on four straight trips to the stripe.

"It wasn't very good, obviously. I'm certainly not going to complain about the number we shot (45). That doesn't happen a lot on the road," KU coach Bill Self said of free throws.

His team did sink 10 of 14 the final 3:20, with Mario Chalmers making two at 3:20 and two at :11.5.

"We made just enough to win the game. We made it harder on ourselves down the stretch, consistently making one of two," Self said. "We've got to do better than that."

KU made just one field goal the last 7 1/2 minutes, a layup by Chalmers, who finished with 18 points and three steals, including a huge steal with 1:10 left. That steal led to an intentional foul on Rush and three of four Rush free throws on two possessions, giving KU a 71-63 lead at :58.

"That's a little misleading," Self said of KU's netting just one field goal late. "How many free throws did we shoot? Our goal late was to use the clock, hopefully create inside scoring opportunities. We didn't take many shots the last seven minutes (six shots, one basket)."

The victory obviously wasn't a thing of beauty, with both teams combining for nine threes in 40 tries, but it was a huge workmanlike victory, with KU outboarding rival Mizzou, 52-43.

"I thought our guards got sped up, tried to make some great plays instead of just moving the ball," Self said. "I attribute that to Missouri's guards. I certainly am pleased to get the victory. I think the reason we played poorly in large part is because Missouri got after us."

He grinned when asked if he and his players were expecting a blowout.

"I expected a low-scoring game, to be honest," he said. "I thought two teams would really guard.

"If anybody thought we'd win this game big, they probably don't understand college athletics. It was a big game for Missouri and a huge game for us, a rivalry game," Self added.

And a good game for Rush, who received family bragging rights over Indiana Pacers player Kareem, despite a horrid night offensively.

"He just didn't make shots. I'm proud of him, his aggressiveness, the way he rebounded the ball," Self said. "This is a big game for Brandon and a hard game for him. He likes a lot of people here. Missouri was good to his brother. He catches crap when he comes over here (from fans), which he should."

Yet the insults of The Antlers, who yelled "traitor" at him in pregame introductions, didn't matter at the end.


goldlighting 13 years, 3 months ago

Why even mention the Antlers in this article? Leave those lunatics where they belong, under a rock in a cold dark place.

blackhawkjayhawk 13 years, 3 months ago

Let's play that old press conference game.....

"If you were to tell me that Brandon Rush would go 2 for 14 from the field, that we wouldn't make a field goal in the last seven minutes of the game, and that we would shoot only 62% from the line - and still win by 6, then I'd tell you that you've been drinking too much tiger juice...."

This win should be a warning shot to every other college basketball team in the country. KU is good.......real good.

Robert Brock 13 years, 3 months ago

The Hawks were given ample opportunities to put the game away by draining easy foul shots down the stretch. Going one for two ain;t gonna cut it against good teams. KU slipped out of town with the W but they had better work on making their FTs if they want to have any shot of making it to the Elite Eight again.


kujayhawk 13 years, 3 months ago

Sometimes you need to just get the win, especially on the road, and move on. It's more important we learned something from this game. We aren't going to play our best every night.

63BC 13 years, 3 months ago

Blackhawk Jayhawk is right.

Missed 17 free throws.

Turned the ball over 15 times.

Best scorer went 2-14.

And they won...on the six...

More than one way to skin a tiger!

JNgohawks 13 years, 3 months ago

Too bad I couldn't watch the game! I am furious! Some bastard somewhere stole my viewing pleasure! I want blood! I want to feel my hands squeeze the worthless life out of this bastards slimy neck, and no I am not joking

ksmax 13 years, 3 months ago

Amen JNgohawks!!!! I was PISSED too!! One of the biggest game so far this season and I find out at 7pm that I can't watch it on TV. What a crock!

Kyle Neuer 13 years, 3 months ago

Free throws Free throws Free throws Free throws Brandon Brandon Brandon Brandon.

Winning ugly is still winning.

Would someone, please, buy Ed Hightower some glasses.

scapillato 13 years, 3 months ago

I know KU attempted 45FTs in this one but missing 17 of them can't be a good sign. Is this the biggest weakness of the Jayhawks?

Ed Fox 13 years, 3 months ago

Well guys - there has been discussion that it was on ESPNU all week. Maybe if you're such a big fan, figure out what channel the game is on more than 5 minutes before the game - and find a bar that was showing it.

kc_wildfire 13 years, 3 months ago

Does anyone know what the greatest thing in the world to do is?



Really, anyone?

Ok, I'll tell you what it is.

It is waving the wheat in the heart of Tiger Country!!!

Two years in a row I have been able to do that, thanks to one of my MU co-workers getting us tickets, and I must say it feels just as good this time as it did last year.

NH_JHawk 13 years, 3 months ago

Good point BannerforKirk, but it's actually been listed as an ESPNU game on the schedule since before the season even started.

jhawkshocker 13 years, 3 months ago

wildfire.......I'll agree to that, but.....the next best thing is going to work tomorrow morning here in Springfield, MO, with about 400 misery my desk won't be "decorated" this time....of course, no need for trash talk from me, just a smile and good morning

Dirk Medema 13 years, 3 months ago

It sucks that we had to go to the bar, and mostly hear "Fight Night", but at least we got in before the cover charge and knew that it would be shown unlike the CBS?NBC games that no one outside the midwest gets any chance of seeing for the sake of PAC10 stuff.

Glad you all are able to wave the wheat and smile proudly.

Rock Chalk

JNgohawks 13 years, 3 months ago

OK, well I have 2 small kids, couldn't get out, and can't get espnu

Rodney Stice 13 years, 3 months ago

Liveing in pac-10 country, I was happy to watch the game. My parents and brother (who live in KS)had to listen to the game on the radio from a station out of dodge city. I still miss the games that are played on Jtv unless I spend $$ to purchase the game or the package, which I do. We forget that it is all about the $$.

Just keep winning, and beating the kittens both east and west of us.

Rock chalk Jayhawk.

trueblue9 13 years, 3 months ago

There are no excuses for not finding the game. Take your kids to Applebees. The fact that we got 20 extra shots from the line isn't a warning shot to the rest of collage bball, it should be a warning to us that we got lucky. MU shot poorly and easily could've beat us. Someone will.

LAJayhawk 13 years, 3 months ago

Not to be argumentative 63BC, but our leading scorer was 4 for 7. Mario had 18. You point is understood though.

I think it's important to point out that while BRush had his worst offensive game of the year, he contributed enormously elsewhere. 1 rebound away from a double-double, and he shut his man down on defense. Good players help their team even when they aren't playing well.

Be thankful that's the only ESPNU game of the year. Had to watch it in a restaurant in Valencia, CA around a bunch of snooty LA folk, who didn't understand what I was yelling at. Or what "Rock Chalk Jayhawk" meant across the front of my shirt.

SWHawk 13 years, 3 months ago

Several people I know watched the entire game on for free last night.

Thanks to Al Gore and 'his' Internet, there's almost always a way to watch something you can't get otherwise. ksmax and JNgohawks, no excuse for you to not see the game last night.

LAJayhawk 13 years, 3 months ago

You're absolutely right trueblue. My 11-month-old son sat on my lap at the bar and grill. You do what you gotta do.

trueblue9 13 years, 3 months ago

Kids love chicken fingers and we like beer. Done and done. Is anyone else worried that the Big 12 is starting to look inferior and we aren't going to get more than a couple tough games before March? A&M seems to have some problems. Texas lost to these a-clowns....Bet the house on N.E. today.

LAJayhawk 13 years, 3 months ago

I would say it's more parity than inferiority. The conference is strong across the board. MU and KState are better than people thought. As well as Baylor.

And I totally had beer while he had chicken strips... that kind of freaked me out that you just said that...........

hawkmama 13 years, 3 months ago

My mother-in-law is in her 70's and lives in a small town of 1900. Even if her health allowed her to get out at night and go to a sports bar, there isn't one available in that little town. She's on a (very low) fixed income, but she does manage to have a satellite dish. She's a huge sports fan and gets a lot of enjoyment out of watching basketball. And the KU/Missouri game is one of the biggest games of the year!! As much money as a person pays every month to get 144 or so stations from Cox cable or a dish network, you'd think we've earned the right to watch every KU game, especially this one. I'm glad this was the only game this year scheduled on ESPNU. But I completely understand the widespread frustration of those not able to watch it. Kansas is a primarily rural state with less entertainment options than metropolitan KC or Wichita. The rural areas are saturated with KU fans who really don't have much else to do for entertainment other than watch the games on TV.

Dale Kroening 13 years, 3 months ago

Whether we won by 6 or 20 it doesnt matter as everyone knows it the border war and can usually throw the records out the window.A hostile crowd and the fact Fizzou was undefeated at home this season and we beat them without having a good game.That to me was impressive.Look at the other teams that lost.GO HAWKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Steve Day 13 years, 3 months ago

Do not know how any sports fan can live without direct tv. Its cheaper than cable, you can pick any sports pack you want (NFL, NCAA Hoops and Pigskin etc...). I live in Pennsylvania and have seen every Jayhawk game over the last 8 years. Would not let my head hit the pillow tonight before I called them to order it. And NO, I don't work for Direct TV. Just a happy Jayhawk fan who gets to watch the games!! Plus if you mention my name, we both get 50 bucks!!!!! Haha

JayhawkRuss 13 years, 3 months ago

Guys, leave the whining to Misery. If you don't know until 5 minutes before the game what channel it is on, its your own fault. If your cable sucks, get a dish. The main satellite companies - Dish, DirecTV, Verizon all offer packages including ESPNU, plus you can subscribe to ESPN Full Court if you leave in a remote or out of state location.

Now the game - showing poise against the pressure, making enough plays to win when several players had off games, in a road game v a major rival.......scoreboard. A win is a win. The Big 12 is above average. As of last week the Big 12 was in the top 2 in conference RPI. Good game, good win.

LAJayhawk 13 years, 3 months ago

ESPNU games aren't shown on Full Court, that's the point. I know 'cause I paid $100 to watch KU games out here in LA, and those games are not seen on that package. Regardless, it's just one game, and a good excuse for the wife and I to go have dinner out. I understand, though, hawkmama if you are in a remote area without a sports bar. That sucks, but I'm sure there are plenty of things you don't get in a town of 1900.........

100 13 years, 3 months ago

After last night's 6 point hoops victory in Columbia, the memory of our earlier 8 pt football loss at a neutral site (in Missouri) is now officially a distant memory. Great job finding a way to win ugly, just as our football team almost did that fine freezing night. Rock Chalk Jayhawk!

Larry Smith 13 years, 3 months ago

I'm just excited that Jocques Crawford committed to Kansas FB today. Sorry, I know it's a bball article, but I just wanted to put it out there.

klineisanazi 13 years, 3 months ago

These Jayhawks won at Missouri, something the last group of Jayhawks without a loss going in failed to do. And they had some rummy named Paul Pierce playing for them. These games are always unpredictable. I say just keep winning.

LAJayhawk 13 years, 3 months ago

Holy crap! We got Crawford!! I just had to log on to to verify that. How is that not "breaking news" on here?!?!

Joshua Hann 13 years, 3 months ago

Look at the first picture from the game. Check out the blonde cheerleader on the bottom right. Says everything about misery.

Rock Klein 13 years, 3 months ago

It was sweet to hear the Rock Chalk chant at the end of the game from the Paige. Music to my ears.

jaybate 13 years, 3 months ago

Current ESPN Headlines:

"KU holds off Mizzou"


"Memphis stays perfect."

Exactly how is undefeated different from undefeated?

Do I detect a little asymmetric headline spin?

These two headlines would perfectly demonstrate headline bias for students taking "Editing" over at the J School.

Chris McIlvain 13 years, 3 months ago

Are you idiots really arguing about cable/satellite TV and sports bars? Tools!

actorman 13 years, 3 months ago

Guys, leave the whining to Misery. If you don't know until 5 minutes before the game what channel it is on, its your own fault. If your cable sucks, get a dish.

While I tend to agree that it's pretty bizarre to not have known what channel this game was on ahead of time, given the huge amount of discussion about it, you're off base when you say that someone should simply "get a dish." Not all of us have that option. Aside from those who can't afford it (which is another issue), some of us who live in apartment buildings don't have a choice. I know, because I tried to get both Direct TV and the Dish Network, and both of them told me that because of the way my building is set up, the satellite dishes wouldn't work for me. So I'm stuck with Comcast. Fortunately, I'm still able to get ESPN Full Court, but for a situation like this I had to go to a sports bar. Hopefully at some point companies like Comcast will cave in and get ESPNU and then this will be a non-issue.

jhawkshocker 13 years, 3 months ago

Hey everyone, Sat. was a great day to be a Jayhawk fan.........but I'm somewhat sad that as of 11:00pm Sun night, only 2 of us have posted congratulations to the women's team at the end of their teams article. THEY ALSO BEAT MISERY!!!!!!!!!!

nute008 13 years, 3 months ago

I watched the game on last night. Unfortunately for me, it was a tiger station. The camera work was shoddy, and always zoomed away from the hawks coming up the floor after the tigers made a big play.
I was disappointed that I had to watch the fans for half of the game instead of the game itself, but I'm glad I got to watch it at all! UGLY win, but a win against mizzou! Rock chalk KU!

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