Kansas defeats Hofstra, 101-65

  • 7 p.m., Nov. 13, 2009
  • Allen Fieldhouse, Lawrence, KS

Saturday, November 14, 2009

X-cellent debut

Henry nets 27, record

Kansas forward Xavier Henry elevates for a three-pointer over Hofstra guard Nathaniel Lester during the second half, Friday, Nov. 13, 2009 at Allen Fieldhouse. Henry scored 27 in his freshman debut.

Kansas forward Xavier Henry elevates for a three-pointer over Hofstra guard Nathaniel Lester during the second half, Friday, Nov. 13, 2009 at Allen Fieldhouse. Henry scored 27 in his freshman debut.


Audio clips

2009 KU-Hofstra

Reader poll

Who will lead the Jayhawks in dunks in 2009-10?

  • Xavier Henry 17% 338 votes
  • Cole Aldrich 69% 1362 votes
  • Thomas Robinson 9% 189 votes
  • Other 4% 83 votes

1972 total votes.

Xavier Henry sets record in debut

Xavier Henry set a new record for points scored by a freshman in their debut. X. Henry recorded 27 points and five rebounds in the Jayhawks' route of Hofstra.

It took much-hyped freshman sensation Xavier Henry all of one game to etch his name into Kansas University’s storied basketball record books.

“I never really think about that stuff, but down the road I bet I’ll think about it and be proud of it,” the 6-foot-6, 220-pound McDonald’s All-American said after erupting for 27 points while playing 24 minutes of the Jayhawks’ 101-65 season-opening victory over Hofstra on Friday in Allen Fieldhouse.

It was the most points scored by a freshman in his debut in KU history, surpassing the 21 points netted by Norm Cook against Murray State back in 1973.

“Of course it was Xavier’s night,” KU coach Bill Self said after watching the rookie hit eight of 12 shots, including five of eight three-pointers. He also cashed six of six free throws. “I told him after the game that it was a freshman record and congratulations, but not to get too cocky.

“It’s a great performance. It’s not the best performance by a first-year guy, ’cause Wilt went for 52,” he added of Wilt Chamberlain riddling Northwestern back in 1956 in his sophomore-season debut.

Remember, freshmen were ineligible at the time.

“I’m happy for him. He’s a natural scorer. He has been kind of thinking instead of playing. Tonight he played instead of thought, which was a good thing. He looked more fluid tonight,” added Self, who said Henry also performed well defensively.

Henry, who combined for 24 points off 42.9 percent shooting in KU’s two exhibition victories, said he wasn’t trying to lead the way on a night Sherron Collins scored 23 points, Cole Aldrich hit for 11 points and eight rebounds and Tyshawn Taylor helped clamp down on junior guard Charles Jenkins, who scored 23 points, but just five the first half as KU blazed to a 48-27 halftime lead.

“I’m trying to pick my spots. I’m not trying to be a ball-hog. I’m more a team player. l like playing with my own team,” Henry said. “I’ve got a big man All-American, a point guard All-American. I’m not supposed to be out there doing all that. I’m trying to fit in and be aggressive at the same time.”

Henry’s attitude shows in his desire to play defense.

“I’ve gotten way better since high school,” he said. “I get in people’s heads and get in real tight. I like to play defense now. It’s going to be a good deal for me this year.”

Of course, Self has encouraged the player to learn defense quickly.

“He’s been tough on me about everything,” Henry said. “It’ll help me come along faster. I accept it (coaching) and try harder. If he didn’t do it, I’d feel lackadaisical and stuff. I don’t want to feel like that. I want to feel pressure all the time.”

As Self said, though, Henry is a natural scorer.

“I see it a lot,” Marcus Morris said of Henry lighting it up at practice. “(But) not like that. He makes a few, but definitely not like that. He doesn’t get them in a row like that, either.”

Told about Morris’ comments, Henry said jokingly, “Man, Marcus, that’s what a hater is. If y’all don’t know what a hater is, that’s a hater. A shot will be on and off. You can’t control that. Tonight it luckily was on.”

Henry hit three threes in the first five minutes of the second half.

“I tell him, ‘You can’t shoot a bad shot,’’’ senior guard Collins said, encouraging the lefty to fire away when open from anywhere on the court.

Henry also had two breakaway dunks Friday. He put them both down with two hands. They thrilled the crowd because of their force, but they were definitely of the simple variety.

“I was nervous making sure I didn’t dribble it off my foot and fall,” Henry said. “Once I got to the rim, I just wanted to put it in. You’ll see different things when I’m relaxed. Tonight I was stressed out for a little bit.”

He said the best thing about the game was not his exploding on the scene, but the fact KU is 1-0 heading into Tuesday’s 9 p.m. game against Memphis in St. Louis.

“Everybody on this team is not too into themselves. We just know we want to win. That’s what our goal is, to be 40-0 and not for everybody to go to the NBA or average 30. Our goal is to win it all, and we know how to do that,” Henry said.


James Miller 11 years, 3 months ago

To Jayhawk Nation from Iraq: I love everyone of you. I will be home for the tourney. Let's make it count.

Rock Chalk Jayhawk

kusayzone 11 years, 3 months ago

KU will be better with another option. X marks the spot! Wait? How many options? I hope Sherron can understand when he is not connecting that he has other players he can rely on for the scoring.

kupopp 11 years, 3 months ago

1866- Thank you for serving. We appreciate it!

Looking forward to this season like none before. It truly looks like we are loaded.

Rock Chalk!

jaybate 11 years, 3 months ago

_Who thinks Pittsburg State could beat Hofstra?

_The perimeterians beasted and feasted on the weak competition, as usual this time of year.

_The bigs controlled the boards against weak competition, as usual this time of year.

_Who will feed the post? This question will be this team's refrain. Judging by distribution of assists, the job will be Tyshawn's.

_65 percent free throw shooting is positively Memphisian.

Aligned 11 years, 3 months ago


Thanks for checking in. Take care of yourself over there.

Dirk Medema 11 years, 3 months ago

The FT's were a sad change from the 80+% the first games.

I also thought it was interesting that Sherron was shooting and TT was getting the A's. I do seem to recall that TT brought the ball up court at non-critical times last year - that it was by design to keep Sherron fresher for later in the games. It would seem like a wise move to have TT & EJ work on thir ballhandling and play at the 1 while they still have SC as a safty net.

Hearing X talk makes me all the happier that he is a 'Hawk, and laugh all the more at the bloggers that were pi$$ing and moaning about him last spring and summer. What a great teammate, which you could easily add for Sherron and the others as well.

Rock Chalk

Dirk Medema 11 years, 3 months ago

Jaybate - Looking forward to your analysis of the G play in the weeks to come with respect to this season as well as next, since Brandon, Josh, and others being here is an unknown.

Chris Shaw 11 years, 3 months ago

Jaybate: I have to disagree because I don't think Pitt State could beat Hofstra. You could see Hofstra was pretty overwhelmed, but they got killed in the rebounding department. I thought Hofstra did an "Okay" job with their guards and their limited bigs. I thought they did a better job than Pitt State. Just my two cents.

Scott Smetana 11 years, 3 months ago

Kensucky struggled last night against a team I can't even remember. Calisleezy blamed it on not having Wall. Even with 1 of our superstars out, we will not struggle. I really wish we could play Kensucky right now. Then maybe Calisleezy would stop getting press and climb down in his slimy cave.

hawk316 11 years, 3 months ago

jayhawk1866, may God keep you safe over there, and thanks so much for your willingness to serve. Plan to be back in the states for the tourney and to see our Hawks win it all.

Whew! Do we have a lot of weapons or what? I suspect that it will be our depth that will carry us to the championship. On those nights when things aren't clicking and most of the team is struggling to score (it happens to the best of teams, of course), there will be one or two who will be able to step up and and carry us.

I know an undefeated season is a rarity these days. and I may be just a tad too optimistic, but if ever a team had the potential to do it, this one does. It has experienced leadership, amazing talent and athleticism, inside and outside scoring ability, strong defense, a team-first mentality, tremendous drive, great chemistry, outstanding coaching, and the aforementioned depth. I know. It still takes an incredible amount of good fortune to accomplish such a feat. I also know that Hofstra is not Texas. In addition, it is still very early. A team must mature and develop strength and character over the course of a season filled with many tests and battles. But doesn't take a PhD from KU to recognize that this team could be very special. Friends, we could very well be seeing history in the making.

Glen Darge 11 years, 3 months ago

I cannot believe the way our Jayhawks are playing. All sharing the good times and the limelight, no selfeshness, and excellent team comradary. Go Jayhawks!

Steve Brown 11 years, 3 months ago

Jayhawk1866: keep your head down and thanks for your service in defending our freedoms.

Kevin Long 11 years, 3 months ago

Thanks for your service 1866. I hope KU can make your time over there better. They have me excited.

KGphoto 11 years, 3 months ago

No reason to over-analyze this one. But it sure looks good.

shoedee 11 years, 3 months ago

Jayhawk1866- thanks for your service to protect the freedoms my family and I enjoy so much. Your sacrifices are appreciated. Hopefully you can catch as many games as possible at (password phog). This is going to be another great year for the Jayhawk Nation!

Sparko 11 years, 3 months ago

T-Rob missed several free throws, as did Taylor--neither of which concerns me. Robinson finally came out tight and was "over-speed" as Bill likes to say. His shot was long all night. Taylor's shots all looked good, but the rim was unkind last night. Amzingly, this could have been a lot worse for Hofstra if some threes and FTs had dropped. Some Hofstra Rainbows went in too. We altered almost every one of their shots--they got some incredible physics-defying points.

mjlindsm 11 years, 3 months ago

-“I was nervous making sure I didn’t dribble it off my foot and fall,” Henry said.

Sounds like Xavier has been watching footage of Julian Wright...

Dan Harris 11 years, 3 months ago

Jayhawk1866- A heartfelt thanks, keep safe and hopefully watching the the Hawks will take you away from the the stress that you are under for a couple of hours ,at least for that day.

rockchalkjayhawk4ku11 11 years, 3 months ago

I love seeing the X's in the audience after Xavier scores!

gchawk 11 years, 3 months ago

jayhawk1866. Thanks for your post and we're all proud of you, stay safe. What a special year we seem to be gearing up for. While watching these young men last night I felt like they were playing at a level indicative of much later in the season. Now granted it wasn't a great team we were playing, but our defense and unselfish offense really impressed me. This should be a fun year.

VegasJhawk09 11 years, 3 months ago

  1. Get home safe man.

Xavier. All I gots ta say is John Wall who??

Rock Chalk championship 2010!

vmwskywalk 11 years, 3 months ago

jayhawk1866 - Be safe and thanks for all you do.

suttonku 11 years, 3 months ago

Jayhawk1866-Thank you for your service...We will all be watching the Jayhawks play for a title in April.

Rickchalk 11 years, 3 months ago

Hofstra would beat Pitt St. like a rug. Hofstra would also beat Loyola that Gay State played. We are gonna make alot of teams look stupid and weak. But i do see Collins getting a little jealous if X outscores him and overshadows him to much this year. Which all makes this team one bad machine to play against.

jhokfan 11 years, 3 months ago

Is the Hall of Fame Showcase a tournament or do we go home after we play Memphis?

jaybate 11 years, 3 months ago

Editors missed great headline opportunity...

"Xavier Too Much For Xofstra!"

aerohawk 11 years, 3 months ago

1866 - I wish you a safe return. thank you! Rock Chalk Jayhawk to all service members.

Kit Duncan 11 years, 3 months ago

I was awed by the crisp passing these guys made. If they can do that against better opponents this team will clean up. So often one extra pass went to a wide open X for a three. If the ball drew a double team on the perimeter a bullet to the middle produced an easy inside shot.

These kids are fun to watch!

MemphisMachine 11 years, 3 months ago

Here comes the show, Scott Trade, St. Louis:)

Steve Brown 11 years, 3 months ago

MMachine: Most of us no longer give a flip about the Tar Heels win or lose, wonder how most of Memphis feels about the Wildcat/Cardinal game.

You & UMass and in a few yrs. the wildcats have a common thread.

Couple years ago you did have world class talent and gave us a drag out knock down battle. Just one bounce, rebound, foul or free throw would have turned the coin. We have been in some of those, Henry Bibby, Carmillo Anthony, 3/29/86 Johnny Dawkins Dook 71/KANS 67 my 1st in person heartbreak. Then there is UTEP, we never really get over some of them.

Often we never know how the worm turns, not sure how it happened, yet thanks for CJ and X. We give you our enternal thanks.

Meet us in St. Louis. We'll be in Crimson&Blue, waving the wheat at the end.

Steve Brown 11 years, 3 months ago

Jaybate: Apologize for my poor spelling & grammar. Being old, blind, can't afford new spectacles and a small screen is no excuse. We all should live to your editing standards and those of your pal Bremner.

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