Sunday, January 18, 2009
D.J. the Cavalier
Former Kansas University power forward Darnell Jackson, who attended Saturday’s game, has averaged 7.9 minutes per game in 17 games his rookie season with the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Jackson has made 11 of 27 shots for 40.7 percent. He has made three of seven free throws and has 27 rebounds.
“I’m not playing that much. Whenever they put me in, they put me in,” Jackson said.
He smiled and said “nah” when asked if he ever was upset with his minutes.
“You can’t be mad about not playing every game because you are still getting paid for it,” Jackson said.
The ever-emotional Jackson may have needed the hugs he received from former teammates and coaches Saturday in Boulder.
“I’m missing being around these guys, joking and playing around,” said Jackson, who informed Cole Aldrich and former teammate and current staff member Jeremy Case he was coming to the game.
“Hopefully, one day I can get back to Lawrence, sit in the fieldhouse and get to experience that again,” Jackson said.
KU coach Bill Self learned Saturday morning Jackson would fly in from Cleveland for the game.
“I thought, ‘Why would he come?’’’ Self said, wondering if the Cavs had a game in Denver, which was not the case. “I guess he got permission to come. He wanted to come to our Michigan State game last week, but weather got him stuck in Cleveland. It was great to see him.”
Reed excels after half
KU sophomore guard Tyrel Reed missed two shots — both threes — and didn’t score in an 11-minute first-half stint.
He went 4-for-4, including 3-for-3 from three in 10 minutes the second half, his 11 points sparking KU in its 73-56 victory.
His 11 points came in the final 11 minutes.
“I’m called on to shoot when open. It’s my role on the team. I hit some shots. Guys found me when I was open. That was that. Nothing too spectacular,” Reed said.
Of Colorado’s effective 1-3-1 and 2-3 zone defenses, Reed said: “They did a great job of contesting shots and flying out at people. We can’t turn it over like that (18 times). We are fortunate we came out on top.”
Reed tweaked an ankle late in the game. “I stepped on somebody’s shoe. I’ll be fine,” he said.
Aldrich revealed after the game he chipped one of his front teeth in Tuesday’s victory over Kansas State.
“I got an elbow. It’s this one right here,” he said, pointing to a front tooth. “It happens. That’s what happens when you play sports. You get a little nicked up.”
The chip might have been worse had he not been wearing his mouthpiece.
Aldrich on Colorado
“They proved they can play today,” Aldrich said. “Their zone was a little confusing. They did a good job with it.”
On the pro-KU crowd: “Matt (Kleinmann) ... it’s his fifth year. He said that’s probably been the most (KU fans) he’s seen here. It’s great to see those people. They can’t quite get into the fieldhouse. There’s a lot of western Kansas farmers, diehard Jayhawk fans. They get the opportunity to come here and watch us. We appreciate it.”
On KU’s 1-2 road record: “A lot of people are saying we can’t win on the road. This is one little steppingstone we can take and continue throughout the conference.”
Turg coming to town
KU will meet Texas A&M at 8 p.m. Monday in Allen Fieldhouse. It’ll be the return of former KU point guard Mark Turgeon, the second-year Aggies’ coach. KU beat Turgeon’s Aggies twice last season — once in College Station, Texas, and once at the Big 12 tournament in Kansas City, Mo.
KU has won 12 in a row over CU and has a 116-39 series advantage, including a 38-26 mark in Boulder. ... KU is 1-2 on the road this season. ... KU scored 25 points off 18 turnovers, the most since the team tallied 26 points against Jackson State (Dec. 6). ... KU hit a season-best 61.4 percent of its shots. CU hit 37.2. ... KU hit nine of 17 threes for a season-best 52.9 percent mark. ... Sherron Collins is 17 points shy of 1,000. ... Collins has made 16 straight free throws. ... Brady Morningstar had a career-best eight rebounds, passing his former personal high of seven against Coppin State. ... Mario Little made his second straight start.