Sunday, February 7, 2010

Foul disparity frustrates head Husker

Nebraska head coach Doc Sadler screams down his bench in the second half, Saturday, Feb. 6, 2010 at Allen Fieldhouse.

Nebraska head coach Doc Sadler screams down his bench in the second half, Saturday, Feb. 6, 2010 at Allen Fieldhouse.


Audio clips


Reader poll

Who played best in the second half of KU's 75-64 victory over Nebraska?

  • Cole Aldrich 19% 338 votes
  • Sherron Collins 13% 243 votes
  • Marcus Morris 58% 1038 votes
  • Markieff Morris 6% 122 votes
  • Other 1% 31 votes

1772 total votes.

Reader poll

Which KU big man off the bench played better in the first half?

  • Thomas Robinson 28% 6 votes
  • Jeff Withey 66% 14 votes
  • Undecided 4% 1 vote

21 total votes.

Doc Sadler — apparently well versed in the rules and expectations of the Big 12 Conference — had little interest in criticizing the officiating following his team’s 75-64 loss to Kansas University on Saturday.

But the Nebraska men’s basketball coach wasn’t prepared to provide a ringing endorsement, either.

“Please don’t write that I think they did a great job,” he told reporters following the game. “I would appreciate it if you don’t.”

The source of his apparent frustration, most likely, was the fact that the Huskers were whistled for 14 second-half fouls (compared to just four for Kansas) Saturday, including four during a two-minute stretch in which the Jayhawks managed to turn a narrow 44-43 lead into a 50-44 advantage.

In addition, Kansas shot 19 second-half free throws to Nebraska’s four, converting on 11 to help pull away from a Huskers team that Sadler insisted did all it could, effort-wise, to hand KU its first conference loss of the season.

“We wanted to win,” NU center Jorge Brian Diaz said. “We didn’t come here just to play. We needed a win, and we wanted a win. But things happen. We didn’t execute like we were supposed to at the end.”

Before a late-game breakdown, there wasn’t much to complain about from a Nebraska team that had dropped six of its last seven after opening the season 12-3.

The Huskers shot 10-of-17 from three-point range (59 percent). Diaz, a red-shirt freshman listed at 6-foot-11, performed surprisingly well against Kansas’ big men, finishing with 20 points and nine rebounds despite entering the game averaging just 8.5 points and 4.1 rebounds an outing, and after entering halftime trailing by four, the Huskers opened the second half on a 10-2 run to take a 43-39 lead at the 15:48 mark.

But, as is wont to happen within the unfriendly confines of Allen Fieldhouse, things turned in Kansas’ favor down the stretch, as the Jayhawks bore down noticeably on defense to force eight second-half turnovers they converted into 10 points and effectively extend their home winning streak to 55 games.

“Man,” said guard Ryan Anderson, shaking his head. “Like coach said, one mistake can just snowball. You make mistakes against a good team like that, they capitalize. I think we went from up 41-38 to down 44-41 in like two minutes. It was boom-boom.”

In the end, the Huskers’ downfall proved to be an inability to execute at pivotal moments — something the team has struggled with during a 1-7 start to Big 12 play.

“The key plays that had to be made in the ball game, Kansas made them,” Sadler said. “And that’s why they’re where they’re at, and that’s why we’re where we’re at.”


jayhawker_97 9 years, 11 months ago

i dont' blame Doc for making those comments about the officiating. unnecessary calls sometimes were made in this game. i wished there's less whistling, that'll give him no excuses. but hey, coach Self was nice enough to give you 2 free shots, anyway.

yates33333 9 years, 11 months ago

Nebraska played a very good game, but you can't expect to beat KU in Lawrence. KU's defense put the screws on Nebraska when Nebraska went ahead 41 to 38. That's what beat them. At that point when Nebraska didn't turn the ball over on a shot clock violation they had to take a bad shot. KU came down and hit several under the basket shots. I am amazed that other Big 12 teams often beat Nebraska so easily. They sure play better against Kansas. If they didn't drub KU so often in football I'd feel sorry for them, but "c'est la vie."

BTW doesn't Reed play hard. Impressive.

Marcia Parsons 9 years, 11 months ago

I don't think Doc should criticize the refs after the mugging of X they got away with. Poor guy. All in one play they hit him on the arm, in the head, and tackled him, and never a whistle. No wonder Self went off. I expect it upsets a coach when he sees one of his players bleeding.

AsadZ 9 years, 11 months ago

Nebraska has some very good young players and they will be much better next year and there after. Big 12 will become even more competitive

oldhawk74 9 years, 11 months ago

Nabraska should be happy it was not a complete blow-out.

Dirk Medema 9 years, 11 months ago

The officials will always miss calls, and there will always be questionable calls. It is the nature of the game. It does seem rather whiny to make it an issue.

Maybe it was Dugan that made it be the focal point of Doc's comments. Maybe Doc focused more on “The key plays that had to be made in the ball game, Kansas made them,” Sadler said. “And that’s why they’re where they’re at, and that’s why we’re where we’re at.”

yates33333 said it well, "KU's defense put the screws on Nebraska." That's what led to the 15-1, 28-5 runs that put the game away, not the officiating.

jhox 9 years, 11 months ago

Quit whining, Doc. I doubt you were too upset that Aldirch was on the bench 7 minutes into the first half after a bogus foul call, or that Markief was on the bench about the same amount of time for an even more bogus foul call. You would have lost by 40 if not for those early breaks.

Jeff Schartz 9 years, 11 months ago

Same old story....Average Big XII team starts season with excellent win-loss record, hits big XII play and gets slapped in the face with reality. Nebraska will NEVER, EVER be near the top of this conference in basketball as long as their focus remains solely on Football. It was a rarity that we finished atop the league in football a few years ago. We know that we own this ENTIRE conference in basketball. Hell, we own this whole damn NCAA, and maybe timeshare the top with a few other teams, but, Nebraska cannot have a legitimate complaint about the outcome of a basketball contest until they understand the hierarchy.

Kenneth Johnson 9 years, 11 months ago

I hate the kind of basketball that the refs created in the first half. I agree with jhox, there were too many calls and it stopped the flow of the game.

Ken Johnson

swjhawk 9 years, 11 months ago

I like Doc Sadler and he's brought the program up (how did that kid Udel get to NU? Both parents are Jayhawks and he went to Blue Valley). Doc makes the games more fun with his fiery demeanor. Is this heaven? No, it's the heart of college basketball season.

jaybate 9 years, 11 months ago

"Sunday Morning Reflecting on Talent Asymmetries in the Age of Talent Brokers:"

On one level, we should all feel very badly about Doc Sadler's continuing inability to turn the Cornshuckers around.

The results are in.

You can't turn a big conference program around today with sound philosophy and a coach who knows the game. It won't attract enough talented players. Not enough horses will recognize the benefits of sound philosophy and knowledge of the game.

I'm not talking about building a champion, or a Top 15 team here. I'm talking about getting to mid pack in a big conference.

Sadler just can't turn the corner and achieve mid pack consistently.

KSU's Frank Martin seems to be the new model.

What exactly is Frank's model?

It begins with a D.

Defense. Nope, guess again.


Ah, no.

Frank has Dalonte.

Today's turn arounds require someone who can make talented players, or at least bigs with muscle and smalls with athleticism and shooting touch show up in unlikely places, places they have not shown up at for decades, places sometimes that they have never shown up at...ever.

It wasn't always this way, of course. Things change, for better and for worse. Sometimes for both.

In the old days, 25 years ago, things weren't fair either.

In the old days, the Cadillac programs got most of the best players, too. And fecal pots full of the merely very good players.

But each of the also rans usually always had one or two guys that could play for a Cadillac program.

I am recalling Stu Lantz at Nebraska, before playing in the NBA, and before his salad days as a Laker announcer with Chick and later with the boring guy who replaced Chick.

I am recalling Scott Wedman, who played for Colorado before playing in the NBA.

jaybate 9 years, 11 months ago

The also rans did not always have one Lantz and one Wedman, or one Don Smith at Iowa State, of course, but they almost always had one guy who could start, or play quite a bit for a Cadillac program. They almost always had a few players that had some game.

Stop and think about Colorado and Nebraska for a minute. They each play very sound, though different brands of basketball, and they play their brands, each probably close to best of their abilities.

But the players?

Colorado doesn't have any one I would absolutely have to have in a pick-up game. They run a system that keeps games close. They run a system that annoys opponents to death. They "keep it close" each game, as they stay locked in the cellar. But is there anyone on Colorado that Frank Martin needs, a guy that could take KSU to the next level? I don't think so, but then Colorado's equivalent of a "star," Burk, was hurt.

Think about it. KSU is no where near as talent rich as KU and even KSU doesn't need any of Colorado's players.

Nebraska? Self had to rest two starters--Cole and Brady--much of the game to keep from blowing Nebraska off the floor, and his friend and colleague Doc, out of a job. As it was, KU still won by a comfortable margin that could easily have been expanded to double digits at any moment of the last ten minutes.

Who else? Well, ISU has Brackins, so the lessers still get a few nice surprises, a few late bloomers with NBA chops. It can still happen.

But today it increasingly feels like Frank and Dalonte are vacuuming up all the stuff that used to disperse rather evenly among the also rans and funnelling it into Little Miami on the prairie.

jaybate 9 years, 11 months ago

And this is not to say Frank is the only guy with a Dalonte. All up and coming programs appear to have a Dalonte. Some, UK folks in particular, would even say KU has Kurtis Townsend. And Cal definitely had Josh Pastner and another fellow, who's name escapes me, brokering the talent into Memphis. But I digress.

Looking at Colorado and Nebraska (though Boulder juco had its best player hurt), there just were no players that could play significant minutes for KU, much less play in the L. None.

HighEliteMajor's great and unrequited love for the "look" of Elijah Johnson might well now be fully requited, had The Prophet gone to Nebraska, or Colorado.

But The Prophet didn't. The Prophet, or someone, dealt him into a stacked deck, one where he has to labor for a year or two in shadows before he shines and hope KU lands no superstars at 1, or 2, that will marginalize him.

In today's game, the talent brokers seem to have skewed the talent pool to the Cadillac programs, no make that to the Maybach programs, and to certain wanna be Mercedes programs that are being "turned around."

It is a system not entirely unlike the one that operates in our economy at large. The rich get richer. A few poor get suddenly pretty rich. And the rest increasingly live at the margin.

Who thinks Frank Martin has more charisma than Doc Sadler? Who thinks Frank Martin is more likely to warm the cockles of parents hearts and cast a spell over young men? Frank, or Doc? It looks like a toss up to me. Both men are rather charisma and charm challenged IMHO. Both know the game up one side and down the other. But only one man has Dalonte. Only one man gets the horses to come to a down program on the high plains. Only one man achieves more than mid pack. Frank achieves national ranking.

Frank has Dalonte and Doc has who?

docileboy 9 years, 11 months ago

jaybate; every time I read one of your posts, an image of Miss Jane talking to Jethro , pops into my head. Go figure.

Tony Bandle 9 years, 11 months ago

Don't forget about "World Wide Wes" the ultimate talent broker!!

Frankly, I thought the referees were exquisitely fair...totally incompetent in equal measure to both teams.

Let's see..starting last Saturday, KSU in OT, CO in OT, NE in a War, TX on Big Monday, all in, what, nine days?? Not exactly a schedule recognizing the "student" portion of the term "student athlete"!!

Reasons KU should lose to Texas: 1] Texas at home and desperate. 2] Big time spotlight of ESPN Big Monday 3] Kansas has a three game conference lead. 4] Texas is due to actually play decent

Reasons KU will win: 1] We don't have Rick Barnes...and they do!!!!!!! :}

Mike Kendall 9 years, 11 months ago


Add one more to "Reasons KU will win"--

2} Balbay, Texas's point guard, will be in foul trouble because when he drives, it is so easy to take a charge on him. Balbay is important for Texas.

Tony Bandle 9 years, 11 months ago're assuming they'll call that deep in the Heart o' Texas!!

Mike Kendall 9 years, 11 months ago

oakvilleJHawk--good point! But kuwells will be at the game--gotsta count for something, right?!

Dyrk Dugan 9 years, 11 months ago

win an NCAA tourney game NU....just one. quit complaining about officiating....get a decent team in there..and win an NCAA tourney game.

KU has a BCS football bowl victory...and the shuckers can't even win one NCAA tourney game.

UT tomorrow night....can't wait!

waywardJay 9 years, 11 months ago

Personally... i would rather have dogus in there.... you can guard the other guys a lot better when he can be left wide open from three and miss by 3 feet......deny him the ball and let him rot on the perimeter..... Pittman's got a better Jumpshot than Balbay.

Mike Kendall 9 years, 11 months ago

Sadler still looks like my French Bulldog and Zek Henry talks too much but probably not as much as Sherron.

hawk316 9 years, 11 months ago

I for one was quite impressed with the game both Colorado and Nebraska gave us. As has often been noted, we get everybody's best shot, but these teams have some talent. Their players played hard and played well (for the most part) and were quite competitive. Furthermore, both programs appear to be on the upswing with some promising young players and good coaching. It just shows you how good the Big XII is this year.

Mike Kendall 9 years, 11 months ago

hawk316--- Totally agree. And, I might add, that KU should get a good seed (#1 seed would be nice) for the Big Dance. I don't think that we will go undefeated in the League. We still have games at A&M, O-State and Mizzou, not counting Texas tomorrow. But our draw in the Tourney should be decent.

FairgroveJayhawk 9 years, 11 months ago

In the picture, Doc is looking at the cheerleaders, he wasn't even paying attention to the game.

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