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Thursday, February 18, 2010

Comparably, Kansas hoops hasn’t had many close calls

Bill Self's Jayhawks know they are not playing as well as they'll need to to win it all come March. The Jayhawks have been claiming close victories but have yet to fire on all cylinders.

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Kansas University basketball coach Bill Self, who breathed a sigh of relief after Monday’s five-point victory at Texas A&M;, told media members he felt the Jayhawks were “playing too many” close games.

In explaining his reasoning, Self said: “Billy Tubbs told me one time over the course of a season you’ve got to play some close games, but you don’t want to play too many, because for whatever reason, he feels they will all balance out at the end.”

Perhaps feeling a bit superstitious about results of close games that surely will come during the remainder of the 2009-10 season, Self, coach of a 25-1 team, backtracked a bit on his Hawk Talk radio show.

“You look across America, we’ve probably played less close games than a majority of teams,” Self said, explaining that, “we’ve played 26 games — seven decided by single figures. You think so many have been close, but really it’s been Memphis (57-55), Cornell (71-66) and Tennessee (68-76) nonconference, and of course in league play we had Baylor (81-75), K-State (81-79, OT), Colorado (72-66, OT) and A&M; (59-54). I do think it takes a toll on you. We’ve got to keep figuring it out.”

A quick look at a handful of the top teams shows the Jayhawks, who lead the country in scoring margin of victory, have not played an inordinate amount of nailbiters.

No. 1-ranked KU has played seven games decided by single figures, winning six. KU is 5-0 in games decided by five points or less or overtime.

No. 2 Kentucky has played nine games decided by single-figures, winning eight. UK is 6-0 in games decided by five points or less.

No. 3 Villanova has played 10 games decided by single figures, winning nine. ’Nova is 4-0 in games decided by five points or less.

No. 4 Purdue has played seven games decided by single digits, winning four. Purdue is 3-1 in games decided by five points or less.

No. 5 Syracuse has played six games decided by single digits, winning five. Syracuse is 4-0 in games decided by five points or less.

And No. 6 Duke has played five games decided by single digits, winning three. Duke is 1-2 in games decided by five points or less.

KU junior Tyrel Reed said he had mixed feelings about nailbiters.

“We don’t want them to be close games every time, but those are the kind of games you’ve got to grind them out,” Reed said. “They are definitely a lot of fun. The guys like to be out there competing.

“We’d rather have a blowout, but it was fun being out there,” he added of the A&M; victory.

Self loves to see his team survive close games played in hostile environments.

“We did not play particularly well, but I think A&M; had a lot to do with it,” Self said. “Our guys showed toughness down the stretch to beat a Top-25 team on the road. That place (Reed Arena) was rocking. It was a great atmosphere. Hopefully we’re getting more battle-tested every week.”

KU will meet Colorado at 3 p.m. Saturday in Allen Fieldhouse. The Buffs defeated Oklahoma, 77-67, on Wednesday night in Boulder, Colo. CU improved to 12-13 overall and 3-8 in the Big 12. OU, which travels to Allen Fieldhouse Monday, dropped to 13-12, 4-7.

Recruiting

Aziz N’Diaye, a 7-foot, 255-pound sophomore center from College of Southern Idaho, may visit KU in March, Southern Idaho coach Steve Gosar told Rivals.com.

N’Diaye, who hails from Senegal, has visited Oklahoma, Oregon State and Loyola-Marymount and will visit Washington this weekend. He has been out of action because of a knee injury.

Terrence Ross, a 6-5, 180-pound senior shooting guard from Portland’s Jefferson High, has trimmed his list of schools to KU, Kentucky, Washington, Oregon and Oklahoma. He’s Rivals.com’s No. 43-rated player.

Comments

Alohahawk 11 years, 8 months ago

One must ponder where the scholarships would become available for the above mentioned recruits. Overabundance at the three (and two) most likely lost us Barnes. If you can't even promise an available scholarship, what recruit wants to chance that possibilty? Would love to have another 7 footer to replace Cole, if he does leave early. But we have all assumed his scholarship would be filled by an incoming point guard (Knight or Selby?), what with Sherron's departure already filled by Woolridge. Regarding the point guard position, Selby appears to favor KU and is likely to choose KU, if Knight doesn't select KU first. As for Knight, yes, he fulfills Calipari's usual "best freshman point guard", but not when it comes to the "brains" category. Knight wouldn't have the question of his test score hanging over his head. For that reason, IMHO, I would be surprised if he chose Kentucky.

As for Calipari, I was embarrassed that he was a former KU assistant, ever since I heard his post game interview with Sam (?) Ryan of CBS sports, after losing to KU in the 2008 championship game. She asked him: "Do you think back to Rose's shot when they took a point off the board?" His response: "Yeah. I don't like this, ehh, being able to go to the monitor. I'm going to try to get that changed, now." This speaks volumes about how he views fairness and honesty, on and off the court. His record at U Mass, and the upcoming NCAA decision on Memphis speak for themselves. As for the Memphis decision, if the evidence truly warrants the action, they should forfeit all their wins for that season, and therefore, Calipari would lose those off of his personal W/L record. In fact, because of his subsequent departure to Kentucky, that would seem to be the only available way to censure him for his actions. It would also force the ESPN announcers to cease commenting on his "outstanding record" while at Memphis. All those records, such as most wins in one season and conference wins, would be erased!!

jaybate 11 years, 8 months ago

"Thursday: And then There Was Aziz:"

} A one-dimensional footer with a torn ACL from a juco?

Two inferences:

a) Bill Self has decided to see just how much of a miracle worker Danny Manning really is; and

b) the brawny big man pipeline is empty and Self does not want to wind up like Jeff Capel, Roy Williams and Billy Donovan.

} Jeff Capel is finding out how tough life in D1 is regarding the 5 spot. First, Blake Griffin is injured a lot. Next, Blake leaves and Capel has to play a season without a true 5. Capel suddenly has trouble winning anything even with Willie Warren. Next, Capel apparently parks a project at College of Southern Idaho. Next the guy blows an ACL. Next KU starts trying to recruit him. Is he wishing he had stayed an assistant at Duke about now?

} First, Eddie Sutton and now Aziz N'Diaye--the contributions of College of Southern Idaho to college basketball just keep coming. :-)

} If KU signs Aziz:

Aziz "Big Grizz" N’Diaye

If KU doesn't:

Aziz "Cheese Whizz" N'Diaye

Chris Shaw 11 years, 8 months ago

Let's look at the schollie situation for Kansas

Guards

1) Elijah Johnson-Freshman-Will produce big minutes next year

2) Sherron Collins-Senior-Only guranteed departure which frees up the first schollie (Scholarship Available)

3) Tyshawn Taylor-Sophomore

4) Brady Morningstar-Redshirt Junior-There was talk back in the day of Morningstar's Dad saying that whatever was best for KU than his son would do that for KU. Morningstar Sr said financials is not of a concern and if a schollie was needed that Morningstar could give his schollie. This was a couple of years ago, but I don't think Morningstar should give up his schollie. Although, Morningstar is in graduate school now and he has 3 or 4 years already paid for so it's not out of the possibility of him giving it up, but I don't think it will happen.

5) Tyrel Reed-Junior

6) Xavier Henry-Freshman-Stated he was OAD before the season, but he needs another season of College IMO (Potential Scholarship Available)

7) Mario Little-Currently Redshirting-will be a red shirt senior next year

8) Travis Releford-Currently Redshirting-Will be a redshirt sophomore next year.

Big Men

9) Cole Aldrich-Junior-Pretty good guess that Aldrich leaves after the season although he could come back. Aldrich leaving would free up a scholarship (Potential Scholarship available)

10) Thomas Robinson-Freshman-In same scenario as EJ-Will produce big minutes next year

11) Jeff Withey-Redshirt Freshman-Will replace Aldrich in the middle should Aldrich leave

12) Marcus Morris-Sophomore-He's already said he would be back

13) Markieff Morris-Sophomore-He'll be back with his Twin Brother

Recruits

Royce Woolridge-Committed-He's already taking Collins available scholarship

Josh Selby or Brandon Knight-Kansas definitely without a doubt wants one of these guys. This only happens if Aldrich and or X leaves to free up another schollie. However, we all know that if for some crazy reason that if both Aldrich and X decide to stay that these schollies have a way of figuring themselves out. Kansas needs and wants a "True Point" so I guess we will have to wait until spring to see how all this works itself out.

I just don't see KU signing both Knight and Selby and the only way I see it is if Aldrich and X both leave, but I just think X is going to come back for another year. We'll see how all this shakes out. I love the idea, but just don't see how KU makes room for it.

(There was a rumor about Knight and Selby playing together so this is the reason why I was responding about the Knight/Selby combination)

Tony Bandle 11 years, 8 months ago

kushaw, what I've heard is Josh's Mom is not a big fan of Calipari but is a big fan of Bill Self. Also, rumor has it that on her visit she had a long, private conversation with the Twins Mom. I can't help but feel that that conversation was a positive!!

Your post is well thought out but there is no way Cole and Xavier come back, although one may want to but will take care of his family and the other needs to but will apprentice with the big boys.

Bang, there you go...Woolridge [who will redshirt], Selby and a five star to be named later!!

Chris Shaw 11 years, 8 months ago

Oakvillejhawk: I was just using different scenarios from above "If" Aldrich and X come back or one leaves or both leave. I agree with you that Aldrich is pretty much gone. I wouldn't rule out the possibility of Aldrich pulling a Hanbrough, but I don't think that scenario is likely.

X on the other hand I believe is 50/50 about now. Yeah, the potential is there, but I don't see him leaving. I know this creates a log-jam at the "Rush-Spot" with Releford and Little and I don't know if that is necessarily a good thing. I think there a number of freshman across the country that got a rude awakening with the talent at the college level. Wall and Cousins are really the only two I truly believe that should declare for the draft. X has been given every opportunity, but if we all are giving realistic feedback, he's not ready.

Chris Shaw 11 years, 8 months ago

Oakvillejhawk: Let's play "What-If".............What if everybody comes back next year and Sherron Collins is KU's lone departure? My scenario above creates a question mark (?) in the scollie department since all would be filled and KU would still be recruiting Selby or Knight very hard to replace Collins.

Chris Shaw 11 years, 8 months ago

Oakville: By the way, that's good info about Selby's Mom and the Twins Mom. Awesome!

Chris Shaw 11 years, 8 months ago

How excited are all of you about Self recruiting the entire country? Back in the day when Williams was here, he pretty much stayed West of the Mississippi. I think by doing so KU unintentionally was always labeled soft by East Coast Media.

Now that KU has 4 big-time players from the East Coast in The Twins (Philly), Taylor (New Jersey), and Robinson (D.C.), I think unintentionally the national media and especially the East Coast Pundits have painted this KU team as tough, deep, and physical. It's amazing how simple psychology plays into the mindset just because of the geography of a couple players.

Let's not forget Little and Collins from the big-market of Chicago. Self is a genius! Just think if Selby comes and we'll have another from the Atlantic in Baltimore.

KUFan90 11 years, 8 months ago

The Senegal pipeline continues. Wonder if Moulaye Niang can put in a good word for us with Aziz...

Kelly Hanrahan 11 years, 8 months ago

Alohahawk - "Do you think back to Rose's shot when they took a point off the board?" His response: "Yeah. I don't like this, ehh, being able to go to the monitor. I'm going to try to get that changed, now."

poor attempt at humor by Coach Cal in what had to be a difficult situation for him personally - your literal interpretation doesn't hold water.

Marcia Parsons 11 years, 8 months ago

I took it as a joke, too, although he probably didn't feel much like joking. The interviewer didn't get it, so it came off as a serious statement to some.

slowplay 11 years, 8 months ago

If you are watching the mock draft boards you'll notice Henry has dropped quite a few places: from a pre-season 6-10 to mid-teens. My guess is he will stay 1 more year. Cole is gone. He will never rank any higher than the 5-8 spot that he is in on almost every board. BTW, the likeliest teams to sign Cole are the Jazz, Pistons or Kings. Sherron is still hanging around in the late first round 22-30, but a strong tourney run could help i.e. Chalmers.

Tony Bandle 11 years, 8 months ago

kushaw..I truly think that if asked, Brady will take one for the team. I assume that he was still under scholarship during his redshirt year so already has had four years and, after what happened this fall, I am sure he is very glad to still be a Jayhawk.

To the extremes [ Sherron, Cole and Xavier leave, Morningstar sacrifices] we have four schollies maximum.

To the extremes [ only Sherron leaves and Brady sacrifices] we have two scholarships minimum.

WOW, if only Sherron leaves, I'll send in $100 toward Brady's expenses and I'm sure I wouldn't be alone. {Totally illegal but it works in the state of Kentucky!!]

Chris Shaw 11 years, 8 months ago

Oakville: Well, you had me intrigued so I had to look it up. Your post from above is good about the "Extremes". Anyway, X is mid-first rounder by all Big Boards at least right now. GM's are definitely drafting on potential with X. I hope Collins can get a "Guranteed" contract. Here is a great read on Draft Express about X and his NBA potential. I think it's spot on. Make sure read the other stuff on the players such as Alec Burks and Jordan Hamilton.

http://www.draftexpress.com/article/NCAA-Weekly-Performers-21010-3392/

X: Draft Express: 14

NBA Draft Net: 15

MY NBA Draft: 13

The Hoops Report: 23

Hoops Hype: 11

NBA-Draft: 9

Aldrich: Draft Express: 7

       NBA Draft Net: 8

       My NBA Draft: 6

       The Hoops Report: 7

       Chad Ford's Big Board: 8  He only listed his Top 10

       Hoops Hype: 6

       NBA-Draft: 6

Collins: Draft Express: 26

       NBA Draft Net: 31

       My NBA Draft: 32

       The Hoops Report: 29

       Hoops Hype: 26

       NBA-Draft: Only listed first round

Steve Brown 11 years, 8 months ago

want X to stay, sure, but he has to go.

as calimari & others are tellin' cruits cant' be oad at Kansas, they take talent and bake it too slowly, so go there and be stuck for couple years.

we need our oad for future walls, barnes, etc.

wish it weren't so....he is done this year: for him and for us...

Columbia 2,000. 03.06.10

jaybate 11 years, 8 months ago

kushaw,

What you are practicing here is feasibility analysis and the first two rules of feasibility analysis are:

1) never lose site of either the forest for the trees, or the trees for the forest; and

2.) work only with "probable" alternative scenarios, unless the client stands to make a ton of money sufficient to warrant the heavy cost of converting possibles into probables. :-)

I don't see the latter, because it would be illegal for KU to incentivize (yeah, I know, its not really a word) anyone to stay.

Hencely and thusly and ipso facto and e pluribus unum and ad astra per aspera, OakvilleJHawk, that old veteran of converting drawings into buildings for fees, is nearly spot on here in his feasibility conclusion.

Nearly? :-)

We know what Self thinks he needs next year, by who he is still recruiting?

PG--Knight or Selby. You take great PGs, whenever you have a chance for them, no matter whether you can get along without them, or not. Also, since Tyshawn has been "a mystery" to Self this year, in Self's own words, and since Elijah has shot atrociously from trifectaville (30%), Self really can't afford to stand pat, when losing Sherron. It is almost a foregone conclusion that he hoped Elijah would perform better than he did. KU's only real weakness is the need for a 10 minute man to back up Sherron, so as to keep Sherron from looking like he has recently from playing so many minutes. Self would not have kept Elijah from a red-shirt, and he would not have given him the starts had he not expected Elijah to contribute. Elijah "looks" so good in some ways, as HEM likes to say it, that the only reason Self would not have gambled more on developing The Prophet has to be a deficit in his trey, as jaybate, notes. :-) Mistakes could have been reduced with more work and play. Trey shooting? HEM argues yes. jaybate argues no. You decide. Regardless (pun intended), Self was a guard. Self knows guards. Self stakes his career on point guards. Self wants consummate point guards. Self wants such good point guards that Mario Chalmers, who probably plays some point in the NBA now, was not a good enough point guard for Bill Self. Self had to have Sherron Collins. It is a foregone conclusion then that Self would take either Knight, or Selby, or both if he could get them, and run anyone he had to to make it happen. Point guard is the coin of the realm for Bill Self. He can't mask a bad point guard, or, at least, he really, really, really, does not want ever to have to try. Frankly, this makes him just like Eddie and Jack Hartman. They all think/thought the same way: I can always cobble something together at the other positions, but I can't fake a point guard. Eddie and Bill of course add that they can't fake a post man either, though they can get by with marginally talented ones from time to time. :-)

jaybate 11 years, 8 months ago

SG--Terence Ross. Self can survive without Terence, but Self is sick and tired of not having a tall, athletic 2 to turn to, when match-ups call for it. And though he will have Travis next year, Brady and Ty depart next year and it sure would help Self sleep better if he had Terrence in the program already for the following season to share the two with Travis when needed. Self knows the trend for every 2 and 3 position player either is to be able to drain the trey at 40% plus, or be 6'5" to 6'7" and Hudy-ized. The days of the slender 6'2", 36% trifectationist combo guard (Tyshawn Taylor) appear to be dwindling. Bring me threes, or bring me length and muscle! Speed is good, but treys, or length and muscles are the litmus tests.

Center--Aziz N'Diaye. Cole gone. Withey not yet showing signs of the kind of aggressiveness a post man requires, and in any case needing a big post man to fight him in practice next year, plus, if Withey were to develop quickly next season, possibly jumping early and leaving the cupboard rather bare at the 5 (TRob just is not a true 5). Self knows a big, brawny 5 in grooming would help enormously with intermittent Saturday before Monday back-up and occasional, 5 minute push and shove with the Dexter Pittman's of this world. Bulletin: Self has got to land a body for the 5, even if he has to give Danny Manning plastic surgery and a false identity and call him Fareek Salasi from Somalia. A big, brawny 5, even a not so good one, even one just good enough for Self to substitute his athletic 4s around sometimes, is imperative for KU to avoid the sort of collapse OU, UNC, and Florida have endured. In today's game, there is no substitute true 5 bodies, even, if like Kaun, they only back-up the great athletes that start, especially in the Self scheme of play it anyway they want. Got to have a true 5 in this recruiting class. Got to!

Next, many ask why Self would over stack at any position, or create situations where he has to run persons from the team?

jaybate 11 years, 8 months ago

Part of the answer everyone gets.

First obvious reason: You want the best players and the most depth you can get to compete at the highest level.

Second obvious reason: once you see players on your team, especially 5 star players, for a season, you really understand what their upsides and limits actually are in your system. You know how they can fit in next year, or not fit in, to the team you are likely to have around next year. Sometimes you want to stack up, because you have doubts about what the guys you have can do. You stack up and worry about the numbers later.

But there is a third reason why you go after the Knights and the Selbys, even when you have Tyshawn, Brady, Tyrel, Elijah, and Woolridge, plus a swing man in Travis Releford available for next season.

If you get Knight and/or Selby, that means Roy, Calipari, Coach K and a few others don't.

You can win by adding to your aces, even if you don't need them right now, by subtracting from your opponent's aces, who definitely do need them.

Forecast:

Cole--gone for sure--Self said it would be his last season (excepting injury) no matter what, when Cole signed on for this season.

Sherron--gone for sure.

Xavier--gone if they'll have him, and there's just not another better prospect for an NBA two or three to spec on in this draft, so they'll have him. Gone for 90% sure, though he would be sooooooooooo much better off staying.

Marcus--gone. I think he plans to come back. I think his mother wants him to come back. But if Julian Wright was good enough to be drafted as high as he was, well, then Marcus is gone, because Marcus can actually shoot, something Julian never even pretended to be able to do.

Everyone else back.

RockCaCO3 11 years, 8 months ago

lighthawk - I'm feeling the "Columbia 2000" vibe. I would LOVE for us to get it there.

slowplay 11 years, 8 months ago

Jaybate, Don't exclude the "CJ" factor when considering Henry's potential leaving. Nor, the fact that moving into the top six (next year) could mean an extra $3M to $4M.

Marcus will not go in the top 20 or even the first round. He does not have the track record for NBA teams to dump a million plus into his lap. He too, would see his earning factor triple by waiting 1 or 2 more years. And, again, the "brother" factor comes into play.

Ten Yeahs 11 years, 8 months ago

COLUMBIA 2K!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! i'm there! i gotta see this one live and bring a big sign! COLUMBIA 2K COLUMBIA 2K cumbia CUMBIA cumbia COLUMBIA 2 KAY BABY! BABAY!

okay sorry about that i'm just excited for another KU / tigers game ...last game of season and other possible whatifs and extra incentitives and whatevers to the game. ohhhh man

slowplay 11 years, 8 months ago

drgnslayr,

Just a couple of remarks concerning your post. 1. X, Collins, Marcus, Taylor and Morningstar can hit the mid range shot but the offense is geared to a high-low game and those shots come off of dribble penetration. X has the most ability (as he showed early in the season). 2.EJ's season was minimal, but I'm not sure that was HCBS intention. Morningstar, after his brief hiatus, has been a great fit. Also, there has to be something that Self sees in practice about EJ that has made him reluctant to use him over Reed, Taylor or Morningstar (defense?, ball handling skills?). 3. Why would Marcus have to play the 3? He's a very versatile 2 right now and his extended range has been problematic for the other teams 2 spot.

newyorkjayhawk 11 years, 8 months ago

lighthawk -

i respect the harrison barnes' and john wall's of the world, but i'll be honest... and other posters, please let me know if you disagree... but i don't want oad's to come to kansas... what does that show? that we're a factory or minor league team for the nba, or that we're fostering championships? memphis had several oad's and ended up getting a coach who'd skip out on a dime and a program that's can't win conference USA... UCLA had a bunch of NBA defectors and look at where they are right now... Kansas is in pursuit of its 2000th win and ready to eclipse UNC as the second winningest program in the nation... if UK takes Calipari's lead and goes after oad's year after year, i can guarantee they will strike out for a few years, get eaten up by a strong SEC conference and KU will feast on their win total soon enough, too... if Henry stays, i think it's great. if he doesn't he'll be the first EVER oad to come to kansas... and it'd be a shame to not have seen if he could've lead our team to back-to-back titles. if Knight or Selby do come to KU, i'll welcome them with complete support, but i'd hope they're in it for more than just one year.

slowplay 11 years, 8 months ago

"Compare that to all those athletes who go early and fail in the pros"...

Sorry this is not a valid statement as you don't know if they would have still failed if they stayed in college. I'll grant you the immaturity factor, but if a player has the skills he/she will most likely be a successful pro regardless of time spent in school. i.e Garnett, Bryant, O'Neal, McGrady, Lewis, Stoudemire, James, Howard etc. etc. I could care less if the NBA drafted junior high players, what I dislike is forcing an athlete to have to attend school and controlling the labor market.

"18 yr old should be enjoying college life, getting an education, dating, and dealing with fame by being "big man on campus."...

Then let's mandate that every 18 year old MUST go to college before they can enter the work force.

newyorkjayhawk 11 years, 8 months ago

drgnslayr- great add-on comments... here's another blow to the hopes kansas gets into the OAD race... 2000 champs = michigan state... main component of that team? mateen cleaves and jason richardson (NOT OAD's) 2001 champs = duke... main component of that team? shane battier, carlos boozer, jason williams (NOT OAD's) 2002 champs = maryland... main component of that team? byron mouton, chris wilcox, steve blake, juan dixon (NOT OAD's) 2003 champs = syracuse... only one OAD, and this can be the only exception to my underlying point... carmelo anthony... otherwise, the clutch performer in that tourney for them was actually more hakim warrick and jerry mcnamara anyway, IMHO... but fine, leave syracuse as a counter to my argument if you want. 2004 champs = UConn... main component of that team? josh boone, rashad anderson, hilton armstrong, charlie villenueva, emeka okafor, and ben gordon (NONE were OAD's) 2005 champs = UNC... main components of that team? rashad mccants, raymond felton, and sean may... marvin williams was a freshman who came off the bench to average under 10 points and under 5 reb's a game that year... not really the big gamer on that team, in spite of leaving after that season... doesn't count, no OAD's were main components. 2006 & 2007 champs = Florida... main components? joakim noah, al horford, corey brewer, torean green. (NONE were OAD's) 2008 champs = KANSAS... no OAD's... Chalmers and Rush were juniors, Jackson, Robinson, and Kahn were seniors, Arthur was a sophomore. they all left, but Collins and Aldrich are still around. 2009 champs = UNC... main components were Ty Lawson, Tyler Hansborough, Wayne Ellington and Danny Green... none were OAD's.

NEED I SAY MORE??? not many OAD's translate to the success a Kansas fan expects from their team.

newyorkjayhawk 11 years, 8 months ago

ralster -

i personally doubt UK is going all the way this year, but it has to do with several inherent weaknesses that the players/coach bring to the table... Patterson, Cousins, Bledsoe, Liggins, and Orton all shoot under 70% from FTs (Orton shooting as low as .521) -- typical callipari squad. any smart team would just "hack-a-big-man" to gain advantage in late game comebacks. also, of course, callipari is NOT a good game-coach. Wall is great, with his .353 from 3PT, 75% from the FT line, and just under 50% from the field, to go along with 6.5 assists, and 4 rebs... but he turns the ball over 4 times a game... just as a point of comparison, sherron collins leads Kansas in TO's per game at only 2.2. Otherwise, their assist/TO ratio as a whole team is 1/1 (another typical callipari-team characteristic), whereas the 'hawks are at 1.5/1... with experience, teams learn to handle the ball more responsibly... you'll notice that bad passes and crazy out-of-control penetration is normally chalked up to "freshman mistakes". For example Morningstar, with his mistake-free nature is simply acting like the redshirt junior that he is, in that he values fundamentals over flashy stuff that ends up being pointless... as long as these 18 yr old kids are thinking they need to make the highlight reel to truly go straight to the nba, they'll continue their circus act, in spite of their antics ruining team chemistry because one out of five of those moves actually working is all that's needed to get nba gm's foaming at the mouth. i'll end my thought on this, but that in itself is what frustrates me about someone like sherron collins losing his spot in the first round of the nba draft to unproven wannabe's who are barely old enough to enlist in the army. they're too flashy, out of control, selfish, and arrogant, who can't handle pressure and can't behave in the spotlight... meanwhile, collins might have a weight issue but he's the toughest player on the planet right now, can feed the post as well as anyone, and i'd love for anybody to find a better leader in crunch time... and he's getting zero love. size doesn't always mean you'll be ineffective... i don't see chris paul out-sizing anyone and he's one of the best players in the league.

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