Advertisement

Friday, February 18, 2011

Tyshawn Taylor shoulders blame for KU basketball’s loss to K-State

A frustrated Tyshawn Taylor reacts after fouling Kansas State guard Jacob Pullen during the second half on Monday, Feb. 14, 2011 at Bramlage Coliseum.

A frustrated Tyshawn Taylor reacts after fouling Kansas State guard Jacob Pullen during the second half on Monday, Feb. 14, 2011 at Bramlage Coliseum.

Advertisement

Videos

Bill Self weekly press conference, Feb. 17, 2011

video thumbnail

Kansas head coach Bill Self addressed the media at his weekly press conference Thursday, Feb. 17, 2011 at Allen Fieldhouse.

Kansas University junior point guard Tyshawn Taylor cringed Wednesday as he watched the film of Monday’s 84-68 blowout loss at Kansas State.

“I’ve played a lot of bad games in my career here so far. That’s probably one of the worst, on both ends of the court,” said Taylor, who committed six turnovers against one assist on a night he scored eight points.

“I was not tuned in. I was not focused on guarding my man (Jacob Pullen, who scored 38 points). I wasn’t getting my team into offense. I played real bad. I (stunk). Everybody who watched that game will tell you that,” he added.

He gave himself quite a scolding Thursday in front of the media.

“I was really rattled,” Taylor said. “The crowd was into it. It was one of those games I was like, ‘Man, I don’t know what to do right now.’ I know all of us played our part in losing, but I think if I’d played a better game, we had a better chance.

“I messed that up. I want to come back out and work hard. I feel I owe my team a little bit.”

KU’s other two junior starters — the Morris twins — also faulted themselves in responding to questions for the first time about the KSU game.

Markieff Morris (three points, no rebounds) was called for his second intentional foul in three games. He’s remorseful about that.

“Once you watch the film and see the things you do, you say, ‘That’s not me. Why did I do that?’ I need to make better decisions,” Markieff said of clipping Jacob Pullen in the face while setting a screen.

“We (twins) are supposed to be leaders of this team and set examples for younger players. By doing that, it’s not a good look for our program.”

Marcus Morris earlier this season was ejected for committing a flagrant foul at Cal-Berkeley and also was whistled for a technical foul at Nebraska.

“We can play without talking to the refs. Me and Marcus are emotional players,” Markieff said. “Everybody doesn’t realize we are into the game so much. When we feel we are being taken out of the game, we get that attitude. We’ve definitely got to change it. We definitely will change it.”

Marcus had some bad body language at times during the KSU game, during which he scored 13 points with three rebounds and four turnovers.

“That’s people’s opinions. Sometimes they like us. Sometimes they don’t,” Marcus said of those who have criticized the twins’ behavior on the court.

“It’s definitely our fault giving that vibe to people, showing such emotion in a game, but I think that’s how we are as players. It’s the only way we feel we can come off the court — by getting fouls and stuff like that — so it’s frustrating at times. We show emotion. It’s a sign of immaturity. We are leaders of the team, and we can’t act that way.”

Marcus Morris addressed one of his recent Twitter posts that said: “I see how it is. When the grass is cut the snakes will show. F.O.E (Family Over Everything) it’s us against the world in my eyes.”

“I think a lot of people took it the wrong way. It was never focused on our fans,” Marcus Morris said. “As I said on Twitter afterward, we have the best fans in the country. I think people thought I was talking about them. I wasn’t talking about fans, just about a lot of people. It’s stuff we have to move past. It’s one game. We’re 24-2. We still don’t have a bad record. The season is far from over.”

Taylor said there has been no players-only meeting this week, but several individual players spoke during the film session Wednesday.

“Coach (Bill Self) welcomes our input. We all want to do what it takes to get better,” Taylor said. “We saw so many dumb plays we all made. Once we focus in, we can be a good defensive team. It starts with me. I’m pressuring the ball all the time. I have to be more intense defensively.”

Self did have a one-on-two meeting with the twins.

“We met with them. They have to do some serious things. The things that have transpired in games have hurt their team. Are they going to be willing to modify, change — and (they) don’t have to change much — but do the things to make sure these things don’t happen again? I thought we’d addressed it. We didn’t execute it in a way I’d hoped. Hopefully from this point forward they will,” Self said.

No. 1 boast revisited

Self was asked if, in retrospect, it was smart for Marcus Morris to speak about wanting the Jayhawks to be No. 1 in the polls after last Saturday’s rout of Iowa State.

“Why would you go public and say something if somebody could ever throw it back at you? Why would you do those things? That’s what I’m talking about — focus,” Self said.

“It was all from an ego standpoint: ‘We did this and have earned it.’ Now we’re going to do something totally out of character of what we believe in. We don’t believe in doing that. That’s a very small example of us not being quite as focused as we should. Why would we make a statement like that? Not that it was awful. Not that it was good. Why don’t you let your play do all your talking? That’s how I believe and that’s how we’re going to be.

“It wasn’t an issue of why we lost. It was an example of a plethora of things that occurred that maybe didn’t allow us to be our best that night.”

Next up

Self on the Jayhawks (24-2, 9-2), who meet Colorado (16-10, 5-6) at 1 p.m. Saturday in Allen Fieldhouse.

“We are 24-2. I mean, regardless of what some people might think, the sky is not falling. The reality is that things have to be addressed. I think we have a perfect opportunity to address them,” Self said.

“If you told us before the season we’d be 24-2, we’d be pretty excited probably after losing what we lost last year. The thing about these guys, and we’ve had other teams like this, they frustrate you because they spoil you. You see what they can do when they are really good, and then it’s frustrating when we are not that good at other times.”

Injuries

Self said Josh Selby (stress reaction right foot) is about “80, 85 percent. There’s nothing to keep him from playing unless he re-injures it. It’s February. That’s the whole deal. Everybody is nicked up now,” Self said. He said he had no plan as to how many minutes Selby would play Saturday.

Thomas Robinson, who had surgery Friday to repair a torn meniscus, will have his sutures removed today. “I anticipate Thomas practicing pretty soon,” Self said.

Comments

KEITHMILES05 4 years, 3 months ago

In the Topeka paper Taylor says he is dealing with things off the court. I am surprised this news media did not quote him on that. He needs to keep his mind on the court for at least 2-3 hours and forget his personal life and stuff. There have been some things being said about this issue but he needs to shut it out for those 2-3 hours.

bobrob76 4 years, 3 months ago

Some fans used to say Sherron played out of control. There is a reason that Ty has started since his freshman year. I trust Coach Self, D Manning and rest of the staff to be good judges of b ball talent. And if you believe the NBA scouts, Tyshawn will be a draft pick whenever he decides to go pro. I hope we have him another year.

Jacobpaul81 4 years, 3 months ago

Sherron did play out of control. He was one of the worst I've ever witnessed at controlling himself. Nearly lost us a National title playing out of control. Course, he redeemed himself a play later. Taylor just doesn't have that "Wow" effect of redeeming himself after making a bad decision.

I do agree with you. I trust the coaches (particularly Manning) at judging talent. Taylor's a top tier college player when his head is on the game. Defensively, he's the best we've got and he's proven to be the only guy who can dribble drive on the team. We just need him to come back down to earth for 2 hours, every game.

justinryman 4 years, 3 months ago

I can't balme and won't blame TT for the loss. Yeah he was far from perfect in the game, but list one player on the team that played to thier average game? It was almost a snowball effect, thier crowd, our winning by 20 a few weeks back, not having TRob available, Selby not 100% and not one starter brought thier A game Monday.

You win as a team, you lose as a team.

rockchalk80 4 years, 3 months ago

"You win as a team, you lose as a team." <--no one player loses a ball game; plenty of miscues to go around.

Sam Constance 4 years, 3 months ago

Not to be contrarian, but I'd suggest that Reed's A-game was working pretty well.

Unfortunately for the 'Hawks, your final comment still applies, so Reed could've been playing his A+++ game and it likely wouldn't have changed the outcome...

JayhawkRock 4 years, 3 months ago

This comment is a joke. Selby has the best handles to play PG? What team have you been watching? Selby is no where near ready to play PG for KU...Not even close. TT is seasoned and to be honest I do trust him with the ball dribbling wise. I think its his decision making that sometimes gets to me but the worst thing is his defense by far. TT's ball handling is fine 95% of the time. Selby dribbles high and out of control and on top of that hes a freshman.

jhox 4 years, 3 months ago

I have to disagree. Just before his injury, Selby was starting to play more and more of a point guard type role, and that's when this team was playing its best ball of the season. Taylor is better playing the two, so the sooner Selby takes on the point guard duties the better. I'd love to see Selby play more at the one. This team would be the better for it by tournament time.

Guys need to be given a chance to play through their errors, or they don't have a chance to mature and get better. Selby just needs time and, unfortunately, this latest injury is just another set back in his development.

JayhawkRock 4 years, 3 months ago

When was he playing the PG role? Tyshawn has been the PG most of this season! Why would we put Tyshawn at the 2? Hes not a scorer! Selby plays the 2 because he can score...if hes bringing the ball up every single time it makes it tougher for him to be in position to score.

You talk about guys needing to be able to play through errors...I agree so tell me, why does EJ gets pulled off the floor after one mistake? Selby is a freshman with questionable handles and I do not want him bringing the ball up and I certainly dont want Tyshawn playing at the 2.

Sam Constance 4 years, 3 months ago

"Taylor is better playing the two"


I have a hard time taking the rest of your post seriously, given this comment.

How is Taylor at all suited to play the traditional "shooting guard" role? He is shooting .313 from deep (which also happens to be his worst long-range percentage in his time at KU) and .457 overall. Aside from pure shooting percentages, his shot release isn't really befitting a prototypical 2--not quick enough.

One additional note on Taylor's suitability as a point guard. In the 6 games between the two losses (to Texas and Kansas State), Tyshawn had the following stats:

30 assists (5.0/game) 9 turnovers (1.5/game) 3.33 A/T ratio

Those are pretty solid numbers, and they coincide with the stretch of games where KU's offense looked as good or better than it has all season. To give Selby credit for that is absurd.

So we can be reactionary and fall back into the "Tyshawn is no good" rut, or we can look at objective data and notice that Tyshawn has perhaps started to figure things out, but had a setback in Manhattan. Personally, I think if KU is winning a national championship this year, they are doing so with TT as our starting point guard.

Mike Bratisax 4 years, 3 months ago

Sorry but pigball is right. Selby should have been the pg since the first day he was eligible. We need to have the best pg possible when March rolls around. Too late now.

jhawkr 4 years, 3 months ago

Seriously, Selby a PG ?? Not yet at this level. Maybe if he sticks around and gets better this summer. By then Tharpe will be here.

Doesn't anybody remember the Nebraska game at KU ! He couldn't handle the pressure so coach sit him over 2/3rds of the game. Selby at the college level is a shooting guard who can occasionally bring up the ball. He is at his best running the wing on the fast break and catching the outlet passes. He has his moments, but due to his game limit this year he has yet to master going coast to coast with the ball without the occasional charge or snafu.

Trust me I wish we had someone other then TT at the point most games, but other then EJ and Reed he is our only consistent option.

KULA 4 years, 3 months ago

Gotta disagree pigB. For better or worse, this team has played better this year with Selby on the bench. Kinda reminds me of the 08 team in that the core of the team has been playing together for 3 yrs now and it shows. They're in sync with each other about as much as can be hoped for, and when you throw a new guy into the mix, they just don't look as synchronized.

Ron Prichard 4 years, 3 months ago

I disagree with pigballin. Selby loses control more often than TT. Inconsistent or not, TT has the ability to take this team to a level that the other guards can't match. Tyrel and Brady are a step too slow and don't have the ability to dribble around their defender consistently. Selby can get around the defender better than anyone, but then its a crap shoot as to whether he will dribble it off his knee, his foot, the defender's hand, or get a spectacular layup. EJ, as much athletic talent as he has, just can't seem to get out of his own way. A great play followed by a terrible play, repeat.

Self knows that if he can get TT dialed in and focused for multiple games (granted, that is a huge challenge), this team will be almost impossible to stop. I just hope TT gets it in time.

justinryman 4 years, 3 months ago

pig, how many practices have you been to in the past 3 years? Probably less than HCBS has missed.

So how are you able to judge? I mean from what you read and see on tv that makes you a million dollar a year coach? I don't think so.

TT did play bad, but geesh I guess when you put the KU uniform on you are not allowed to have a bad game....EVER!!!! That's rediculous.

There is a reason HCBS, has the job that you can't even apply for.

gratefultyler 4 years, 3 months ago

“Why would you go public and say something if somebody could ever throw it back at you? Why would you do those things? That’s what I’m talking about — focus,” Self said. Glad this was finally brought up. That was bulletin board material at its best.

Matt Bowers 4 years, 3 months ago

Is it too late for Tyrel or Brady to take control and be leaders? Why is it that the three people who aren't level headed are leading this team? Whatever happened to leading by example?

The Twins don't bother or worry me-yes they are emotional-yes they have a reputation, but they don't cost KU games and they appear to always give a 100%. My real concern is with TT. He is too far into his career to be playing these type of games and to be losing focus. I said it before and I'm saying it now...TT needs to lay off the pot or whatever it is that has crawled onto his back. TT's play is out of control and as he goes, so does the team.

I'm predicting that the Twins rebound nicely and that TT, eager to prove he can play defense, ends up with two quick fouls and on the bench. Hope not, but I haven't seen anything to think differently.

Rock Chalk

rwhawk 4 years, 3 months ago

"TT needs to lay off the pot or whatever it is that has crawled onto his back."

If you didn't mean this, you didn't need to say it. If you meant it, that's not right, and you need not say it.

I'm o.k. with opinion and people who do like this or that player's game or the way they carry themselves on the court, regardless whether I agree or not, but this was an unfair jab.

rwhawk 4 years, 3 months ago

Typo: "...people who do not like this or that..."

FairgroveJayhawk 4 years, 3 months ago

It's good for Tyshawn, Marcus and Markieff to accept responsibility. It's good to get that focus and move forward. They've each shown moments of brilliance this season and a loss such as KState will only make them stronger.

Keep that focus. Rock Chalk

gchawk 4 years, 3 months ago

Thought the same thing. TT can't take all the blame for the loss, seemed like a team effort to me, however, like NJJAYHAWK said, we're 24-2, we're having a great season but with a couple of setbacks, it happens. Let's kick some Colorado butt tomorrow.

100 4 years, 3 months ago

That's because 25% of these "fans" are rooting for Ohio State.

Hey we're #1 in the country right?

Before Monday we looked unbeatable.... The truth is, if we have any shot of winning the championship this year, a lackluster loss like this where a clearly inferior team plays to perfection (whether it be NU, KSU, ISU, OSU in 2008) will be a necessary (albeit incredibly ugly) endeavor to get this particular team past the second round.

As we've seen before, once we're past those rounds, Self & his staff really wake up & it turns into Super Bowl fever around here.

Thank goodness the kids took accountability because this really is a special team when all cylindars are firing.

Mike Bratisax 4 years, 3 months ago

I have to admit that I wish we had another game since KSU. Hard to wash off the stink with this long week at #1. Gotta bad feeling for Colorado tomorrow. I think it will be a major blowout. Bad day to be playing the Jayhawks

brooksmd 4 years, 3 months ago

"Bad day to be playing the Jayhawks"...Exactly the feeling I expressed earlier in the week. Don't think I'd want to be Colorado coming into AFH. History has shown there is no mercy, especially in AFH, after a bad performance.

leonard 4 years, 3 months ago

I don't have any problems with the leadership and coaching of Self. Some complaints along the way...sure...I get to do that as a fan.

Our staff has been through the wars of a long season many times. One game does not define a season but one game does define the fragile nature of Taylor.

Any player can have an off night when their shots don't fall...but there is no excuse for a very experienced junior to fail to give his best EFFORT defensively...or crap his pants because of a raucous KSU crowd.

Taylor's a nice asset for the squad but after nearly three years it's time to recognize his shortcomings and give him the quick hook on the nights when he fails to bring the effort.

UmbertoConforti 4 years, 3 months ago

TT isn't the only person to blame for the K-State blow out. Likewise, K-State played a good game. Few players ever have games like Jake "the Human Earthquake" had. I really believe the inside game hurt more than anything else.

PhogAdvisory 4 years, 3 months ago

Agreed. TT and Selby have had off-nights before and we've managed to pull out some victories. Maybe they weren't pretty, but we did it. But when TRob's injured and neither Morii shows up? I don't know if we'll ever be able to win a game like that. If Kieff and Cus post their averages (points and rebs), we might have still lost, but it would've been a whole lot more respectable (5-8 points instead of 16).

Either way, no sense talking in hypotheticals. Game's over, time to take out our frustration on the Buffs.

jayhawkinATL 4 years, 3 months ago

Awesome job, folks!!! Tyrel has opened up quite a lead in the popular vote. Keep voting!!!

http://www.seniorclassaward.com/vote/mens_basketball_2010-11/

brooksmd 4 years, 3 months ago

Just as long as the "Dookie" don't win.

ManOnTheMoon 4 years, 3 months ago

Man... I can't help but completely agree with Cus on the snakes comment. If anyone got on this site Monday night you would think "fans" we wanting the brothers' Morris kicked off the team. Ganted, some of the recent actions by the twins are not what KU stands for, we still need to be behind this team. This is a great team. We haven't been this explosive in a while. Memories of Roy's teams scoring 90+ points night in and night out. This team WILL be fine in March, and WILL play in the Final Four. Three juniors and two seniors starting is something not many other schools have...

Omari Miller 4 years, 3 months ago

+1. We played a horrible game - granted. But we're 24-2 and will still be in good shape to remain in the top 10, seeded well in the NCAA (if we take care of business), and frankly, taking a good beating at this time of year is probably a good thing... especially since we tend to relish the underdog role.

What's bad is that we are one of a tiny number of teams with two or fewer losses, yet these messages boards are still lit up by "fans" talking about the many things wrong with the team, how we can't win the NCAA, etc. I realize part of this is about venting and some go super pessimistic when doing so. I also know that some of this is the culture of message boards where folks are free to anonymously post, change profiles, etc.

In the end, though, we've got just two losses with only a handful of games left in the regular season... with a team many "experts" picked to do poorly (at least by Kansas standards). Somebody was asking why KU wasnt the #1 choice by so many top recruits. Maybe they read these message boards and think "it's been days since the loss that's only the second in the year, they've got a game tomorrow, and they're still bashing their own players... I can do without that."

ManOnTheMoon 4 years, 3 months ago

VERY VERY nice point... The morning after a loss, some fans take it upon themselves to really cut our players down. And here we wonder why Cus tweets what he does. For gods sake give the kids a break.

Mike Bratisax 4 years, 3 months ago

I know I said this before...but I refuse to post until a full 24 hrs after a loss. I had my a$$ handed to me after our first loss.

joeloveshawks 4 years, 3 months ago

Tyshawn is probably the most inconsistent guard we have had in a starting role since Bill has taken over and honestly I can't remember a similar player under Roy. I like Tyshawn, but he doesn't do anything REALLY well. He is not a great shooter, he is not a great defender, he is not a great ball handler and unfortunately we are seeing that he is also not a great leader - which is what I think most of us were hoping for at the beginning of the season. I think he is an important part of our team as Selby and EJ are really young, but Tyrel and Brady are going to have to do a large majority of the stepping up when we get in close games in the tourney. With all of that said, I hope Tyshawn figures things out and starts playing well down the stretch.

Andy Tweedy 4 years, 3 months ago

There is one thing he does really well. He is REALLY fast with the ball in his hands. Otherwise, I agree, but I trust coach to put the right guys on the court. If TT is starting, that tells me there isn't a better option. He sees these guys in practice every day and sees them through the eyes of a coach with crazy credentials!

Clarence Haynes 4 years, 3 months ago

As I have said on previous blogs, you play with what you have.

Ron Franklin 4 years, 3 months ago

Is the point of this article to provoke a Tyshawn Bash-a-Thon?

I sure hope not.

Please don't take the bait.

Ron Franklin 4 years, 3 months ago

I'm with ya. I think everybody now has had the chance to share their opinion of Ty at least once.....then it just goes into 'beating the dead horse mode' which makes this site a drag. I think there are positive things to talk about like Texas losing.

I had a dream last night that Texas loses to Nebraska @ home & Baylor @ home and we get another share of the league title this year.

Jack Wilson 4 years, 3 months ago

BlownJay - I like your dreams. But that is dreaming ... And to your point above about the article bringing out the TT bashing. I did bite below. But I think with a lot folks, me, and Lebowski likely included, it is a sense of desperation ... that with the status quo continuing, this team is not a Final Four team. And after such a horrible crash and burn last March, it is hard to see it happen, and see nothing being done about it.

Michael Leiker 4 years, 3 months ago

If KU fans can't think that this team is a Final Four team, what fan base out there right now is allowed to think they're team is FF caliber?

Mike Bratisax 4 years, 3 months ago

I thought last year was a Final 4 team and truthfully, better than this team is at the moment. I also think this years team has the potential or more upside than last years..if we get healthy quickly.

jaymar74 4 years, 3 months ago

No, it's like saying Petitte is 57-5 as a Yankee starting pitcher to someone whe wants Petitte to go to the bullpen because they are tired of the hits he gives up.

4 years, 3 months ago

Here is another article with some different quotes:

http://rivals.yahoo.com/ncaa/basketball/news?slug=ap-t25-jitteryjayhawks

One I particularly like from Coach Self:

“Winning covers a lot of ills.”

This is so true, and makes me think about the close wins we have had this year in which we didn’t play well. Our record could easily be several losses worse than 24-2 right now.

One thing about TT, love him or hate him, he is our best dribble-drive penetrator to the basket. If he focused better, he could create a ton of shots for others and / or himself.

Looking forward to turning the loss at K-State into positive motivation for the rest of the season.

Kye Clark 4 years, 3 months ago

I have said a different version of this quote many times throughout the year when I have been critical of this team while they have been winning, and that is that "winning covers a multitude of sins." Of course many posters have not wanted to hear it, choosing to go with the "hey we're (whatever our record is) and ranked #(whatever our ranking is), just enjoy the ride." Ironically after the K-State loss when I voiced many of these same criticisms I was met with exactly the same response. So to some fans it is never a convenient time to try and point out some flaws in this team. And apparently it doesn't matter who is pointing out the flaws. Tyshawn, the Twins, Coach Self...some fans will simply tune everything out and continue to view things as they always have. Which...I suppose if that's the best way for them to enjoy this team that's their prerogative. For me I cannot ignore what my eyes see, and I just hope that the team gets some things fixed to allow themselves a chance at a great run in March. RCJH!

Justin Carlson 4 years, 3 months ago

I respect that tyshawn has tried to make a mends or defend is poor play! He explains that he will be extremly focused next time out! Does he have the skills or the mindset to right the ship? I am concerned he doesn't! As we have all seen his past 2 3/4 seasons when he is not playing well he shuts down! He does not grit his teeth and pick it up on the defensive end he pouts and jogs to the defensive end after a turnover. (Huge concern from your starting point guard)

The twins> Poor play=A bonehead sometimes questionable play ie (intentional foul, pouting, or running their mouths.)

I respect all 3 and the genuine attempt at an apology to their team, coaching staff, and jayhawk nation!

But as history has proven with these three. Do they have the mental mindset to respond in a positive manner?

Myself, I have concerns and the cupboard is very bare in the point guard positiion, and with the scoring guard tandum at CU coming we may findout really quick how Tyshawn will repsond!

Good luck Saturday! We may very well see the true nature of this team on Saturday afternoon!

No_phog 4 years, 3 months ago

When is the coach responsible?

Seems there was a lack of Defensive plan.

Ben Simonett 4 years, 3 months ago

This is what i have been waiting to see since monday. The kids actually owning up to the fact that they screwed up big time. Admitting you have a problem is the first step in fixing it. Figure out what went wrong and learn from it, don't let it happen again.

Marcus saying the snakes in the grass tweet wasn't about the fans is complete B.S. his explanation was it was "just about a lot of people". a lot of people? like the tons of fans? thats a pretty lame backtrack.

I also think its funny that self now says "Hopefully from this point forward they will" when reffering to the twins keeping there emotions under control when before he made the blanket statement that is would not happen again, now its HOPEFULLY it wont happen again. I think even bill is getting to the point where he doesn't think the twins have it in them. They need to quit talking the talk and start walking the walk. actions speak louder then words quit telling us your going to address it and just address it!

Que the homers calling me a troll and attacking me for not seeing the world through their crimson and blue biased glasses in 3....2....1.....

Kurt Eskilson 4 years, 3 months ago

Actually, bennybob, I think your opening paragraph nailed it. Not that you should give a damn, but I take back my earlier assumptions. I'm looking forward to seeing the team "walking the walk" and serving up deep-fried buffalo tomorrow afternoon! RCJH

oldalum 4 years, 3 months ago

I'm not going to criticize, but I will say that you may have forgotten how much worse it used to be. Keiff was usually on the bench for most of the first half due to fouls, and fouled out before the middle of the second half. Marcus wasn't much better. The are gradually overcoming the bad habits they were allowed to cultivate all of their basketball years prior to college, and I'm sure it isn't easy. I believe they are quite sincere when they talk to Self about how they are going to change and why he would think the problem was resolved. But in the heat of the game sometimes they just react or get frustrated and the old behavior comes out. I'm confident that sooner or later the new behavior will finally replace the old habits. I'm so hopeful they will both come back for one more year. It would be more reinforcement for them, and it wouldn't be bad for us, either.

Jack Wilson 4 years, 3 months ago

TT says in the story above: "I was really rattled. “The crowd was into it. It was one of those games I was like, ‘Man, I don’t know what to do right now.’ I know all of us played our part in losing, but I think if I’d played a better game, we had a better chance."

From the Topeka Capital Journal: “It was just one of those games where ... I had a turnover from the beginning, I had another turnover right off the bat, then it was just like, man, it’s one of them days,” Taylor said. “Jake came down, hit a three, he got me in the air and got three free throws. Again, I’m like, ‘Dang, it’s one of them games.’ ”

Also from the Topeka Capital Journal: “We struggle with focus,” Self said. “We struggle with being able to maintain things. Distractions, no matter how minimal they are, if that was a factor Monday, what will it be like in the NCAA Tournament when distractions are more?” Taylor didn’t go into specifics, but he admitted to having been distracted by things going on in his life outside the basketball arenas. “I think that’s part of it, but I’m not gonna make excuses,” he said. “That’s my job. I’ve got to come ready to play.”

Here's the link, fyi: http://cjonline.com/sports/2011-02-17/kus-taylor-i-sucked

Please read the above-cited quotes and digest them. This is not a freshman, nor a sophomore. This is your junior point guard who has basically started every game since he was a freshman. You know how they say that freshman, but the end of his freshman season is really a sophomore ... this guy is nearly a senior? This should cause all Jayhawks fans .. and coaches .. great pause and concern. If he's going to be rattled to the point of accepting defeat .. going to be "one of them games" .. can't keep his composure .. "Man, I don't know what to do now" .. I can't imagine what he will do on a bigger stage, under brighter lights, with the season on the line, one and done, in March.

As an aside, I know we'll get the comments .. "coach Self knows what he is doing", "you don't know more than coach Self", as well as the every other option other than TT won't work or is "stupid" crowd. It's already started above on this thread. And I know those that subscribe to those positions like a religion will make every excuse in the world for TT. It's like the sun rising in the east. But your heart is in the right place. You are attempting to support your team. That's fine. That is appreciated.

But back to reality. Is this seriously the point guard, the floor leader in whose hands coach Self is going to place our tournament future?

ObiWan 4 years, 3 months ago

Wow, those quotes are troubling to say the least. The foul Pullen drew on him was pretty early in the first half, which means he essentially felt defeated the entire game. Not good. Say what you will about Sherron Collins, he would never let himself get deflated like that. He never quit trying to win, sometimes even to his detriment, but you never want your PG to accept defeat during a game.

Michael Leiker 4 years, 3 months ago

Do you really take his quotes seriously? To me he just says whatever comes to his head and tries to make it sound good as he goes. He felt he needed to be apologetic and deferential and was just trying to make it sound that way.

Were you at the game Monday? It was just as tough of an environment as 2008. It would have taken an heroic effort to win in that environment after getting off to the start they did with KSU hitting reasonably well guarded shots like they were.

The KSU game is absolutely no predictor of how this team will perform in a neutral court, NCAA environment.

Lash 4 years, 3 months ago

He's the best we got and he'll be back next year. With his mind set, if you would have benched him for Selby and Selby leaves then you have to start all over next year. This is what we have. This is what Self has to work with. Robinson able to play would have made a big difference.

You have to enjoy the success, another 30 win season. Every victory is important to NCAA especially if you are KU because they never get the respect they deserve and probably never will.

I think we need to enjoy Jayhawk success.

Mike Bratisax 4 years, 3 months ago

Easily an 'Instant Classic' posting HEM, particularly the points made about those who throw the 'you couldn't coach a JV team or carry HCBS's jockstrap' in your face anytime you disagree with the coarse this team is going.

Jack Wilson 4 years, 3 months ago

(cont) Sometimes, the answer is just that easy. Sometimes, it is not complicated. There you have it. Right in front of you. Just consider what he says.

Couple that with the fact that since Selby arrived, TT's assists have dropped from 6.4 to 4.7 (meaning his assists per game have been well below 4.7 since the first 9 games .. at the point Selby arrived), and despite the protests of the TT crowd .. the guy is not a playmaking point guard. He is a point guard that looks for his shot first when he drives to the hoop, rarely dishes, and has limited finishing ability (thus the TT-crowd's argument that his misses on drives really benefit the team because some of them get rebounded by us, and some of those turn into points).

The answer: Move TT to the 2 spot, give Selby the ball. It might relax TT so that he might play better, and it puts the ball in our most athletic, play-making player's hands. It is a risky move. A bold move. A move that could, in the end, take us to the promised land. A move that could flame-out. For those that are averse to risk, you will only see the negative. You will only see that our level of play could decline. Open your mind, as Morpheous would say.

Selby could struggle and could make some boneheaded plays. Expect that if he is moved to the 1. But he could explode. He could ... could ... be the man. We play Colorado and OSU at home the next two games .. perfect time to start the experiment.

beware0fph0g 4 years, 3 months ago

+1

I would absolutely love to see Tyshawn playing off the ball, and begin the Josh Selby Experiment (JSE). Thing is, if we don't start it right away (read: Saturday's game), then there would be no time to prove the method. 1-3 games isn't enough to get a fair statistical analysis. 4-6 games is better, but still not great. 8 games? Perfect.

Bill, take a cue from Nike. Just Do It. (wow...that was even lamer than I thought it would be)

Kye Clark 4 years, 3 months ago

I always enjoy your posts. Well thought-out and articulated, and your beliefs are the same during the good times and the bad. A couple of things:

  • You forgot the "Tyshawn is the starting point guard on a 24-2 team. That's good enough for me" comments.

  • I am in complete agreement that moving Selby to the point is a move worth making. Where I see a problem is moving Tyshawn to the 2. He was there most of last year, and quite frankly his sophomore season was nothing that gets me excited for the future prospects of this team. Will moving TT either to the 2 or to the bench make him even less effective? Will it be a net gain? I don't know what the solution is, but I'm with you in seeing that the status quo isn't it.

Jack Wilson 4 years, 3 months ago

Thanks .. I don't know if moving him to the 2 will help, or not. But it is at least a different look, less pressure perhaps.

I would agree with you. There is nothing from his play primarily at the 2 that would be particularly encouraging .. but I know I'm a broken record here. His play in the first 9 games this season was encouraging. It was the type of play that is displayed by a guy that has no pressure, that is secure in what he's doing, and that is confident. Just thinking we could catch some of that magic moving him to the 2. And he was terrific in the UCLA game.

Following the funhawk/drgnslyr lead on the glass being half-full, or more. And I really do feel that way on this team. This would be a tweak.

oldalum 4 years, 3 months ago

Point guard is a tough assignment for a freshman, but I think Josh probably has the skills to bring it off. However, is it the time to start experimenting when he is playing only at 80% to 85% with his injury?

Funhawk 4 years, 3 months ago

The glass is not half empty. The glass is 92% full.

kufootball2008 4 years, 3 months ago

Tyshawn should play, but NOT start.

1- Selby 2- Reed 3- Marcus 4- Markieff 5- Robinson

1st off bench- Brady 2nd off bench- Tyshawn 3rd off bench- Little

Would be tough for the three big guy to play so much, but that may be what it takes to cut down the nets in April.

Michael Leiker 4 years, 3 months ago

People who want to change the starting point guard on a 24-2 team after a road loss to an in state rival who played their best game of the year, shot lights out in a Big Monday environment and go with a Freshman who you have seen play about 10 games, 50% of which he performed at a C level to be generous just absolutely blow my mind.

Ann Oneill 4 years, 3 months ago

There is no way we can start three bigs, as we don't have enough depth. Withey is not strong enough to be the first sub off the bench for the Morrii or TRob. Subbing Little at the #4 or #5 spot is possible, but going with a smaller lineup is not always the answer.

nwjhawk 4 years, 3 months ago

Selby is only 80% and TR is out for at least another week, so your experiment couldn't become reality until then. That leaves us like 3 games before tourney time.

I also don't think we have enough depth to start 3 bigs. You would have to play Withey as part of the regular rotation and unfortunately he hasn't developed as much as everyone had hoped.

REHawk 4 years, 3 months ago

HEM, I have thought along the same lines. Problem, as I see it, what then does Coach do with Tyrel? Start him at the 3? He is definitely a 34 minute player if this team can maintain focus.

Ron Franklin 4 years, 3 months ago

Brady for President!!!

I mean, Point Guard.

REHawk 4 years, 3 months ago

football08, we get in an early foul situation with the 3 bigs, then we are forced to play smaller with Little, or the yet undeveloped Withey must be counted upon. Would seem best to employ Little in minutes when we are not forced to sub in desperation.

Clarence Haynes 4 years, 3 months ago

Based on what we saw in the game at Boulder, Withey might be effective against the Buff's bigs.

Clydecito 4 years, 3 months ago

Our point guard situation is what it is. Josh IS a freshman, who started his KU career with a serious hand/finger injury which prohibited his participation in a summer of practice. His 'handles' are still recovering. Then he sat for the suspensions and just when he was getting comfortable with his position and play (as was his teammates) he sat with his foot problem. Unlike other freshmen who become sophomores through a season of play, he just hasn't got the game playing experience of the other freshmen in the country. He is not ready to run point, nor does his health status justify the disruption of a rotation that has produced a 24-2 record, to 'experiment'. . TT's head, ego and maturity have always shown troubling propensities, and about the time you figure he's conquered those problems, they pop up again. I don't know, maybe benching him for Josh would be the awakening moment TT needs, but I doubt it. I fear it would wreck the mindset that is TT to the teams detriment. I'm just glad to be a fan of the program and will keep cheering these guys on while watching the staff work their magic, with what they've got.

joeloveshawks 4 years, 3 months ago

The thing that truly worries me about Tyshawn being bothered by the crowd and the moment and the atmosphere is he is one of the guys who should be able to take big shots down the stretch or make big passes or shut down a guy on defense when we really need a stop. I really hope that he gets his confidence up soon because we have to have him. While thinking about it, if we get into a tied game in the tourney, what guard takes the shot? We don't really have a Keith Langford or a Mario Chalmers or a Sherron Collins this year.

SCHNBALL 4 years, 3 months ago

What a difference a year makes!! Last year we all moaned about how our offense was boring to watch and how the ball stuck the entire possession. Now this year, an offense that I must say has been a joy to watch in the era of dribble drive and NBA style play.

I must give kudos to the coaching staff to adjusting their offense to the talent that we have this year, not to many staffs are willing to do that anymore. With that being said, I find it very interesting that Self admitted in one of his latest interviews that this team has hung its hat on offense, so unlike any Self team in the past and quite an admission from a coach who before this year, was relentless in his defensive approach. So the question moving foward, can this team make a 6 game run in the tourmament with this style of basketball?

Two main factors to me moving foward:

  1. As jaybate, says, will the tourney once again turn into muscle ball and can this team handle being pushed around a little bit with teams trying to disrupt what has been a fine tuned machine on offense. K-State took us out of our rythm on offense and we were not disciplined enough to be patient and run our offense, which brings me to the second point.

  2. TT, the topic of this article, can he put together 6 good games in a row. In my mind, he makes this team go on the defensive end, one slip up and we will be done.

I believe this team may have 1 or 2 more set backs before the end of the regular season.

As coach HBCS has stated, we have hung our hats on offense, so one stat alone may be an easy indicator to see where this team is headed: assists.

For the year, we average 18.3, in our 2 losses 12.

Michael Leiker 4 years, 3 months ago

Taylor is by far the best ball handler on this team (talking in terms of just pure handle). He has been pretty darn consistent all year in terms of handling the ball and running the offense. When he makes a mistake it is usually a glaring mistake but I believe his pluses easily outweigh his minuses. I think Coach Self realizes he really does not have a choice to make. It's too late to experiment with Selby and Brady and Tyrell are just not quick enough off the dribble to avoid traps, get into the lane consistently, etc.

Tyshawn's ability to get to the rim is overlooked by fans. Yes, he misses shots in close quite a bit and when he is off he is off, but he gives you the best chance to get an offensive rebound off of his misses, and when he is on and making his "bunnies" (never really liked that term) this team reaches it's ceiling.

I think most of us realize in the back of our minds that Taylor is the most important player on this team. He is the limiting factor and the piece that gives KU the most upside as well. I hope HCBS continues his early to mid season coaching style of just being supportive and steady with Tyshawn. TT seems to try so hard and take things so personally that mistakes seem to snowball on him. Best thing Self can do is help him feel comfortable, but in control.

For the third straight year, TT is they Key for KU. I think we're going to see a great March from him and am very excited about it.

XEPCT 4 years, 3 months ago

I assume when Tyshawn said "I (stunk)." He really said "I sucked," and the LJWorld changed it. In that case, shouldn't the editor have changed it to "I stank," or is proper English a lost cause?

Scott Smetana 4 years, 3 months ago

Nice article. The twins are gonna kick some butt, especially when backed up by TMonster. TT will hopefully play much smarter. now... MOVING ON

REHawk 4 years, 3 months ago

SCHNBALL, you produced an interesting statistic regarding much fewer assists in the two losses. That kind of stuff is why I enjoy reading these posts.

SCHNBALL 4 years, 3 months ago

Thanks ReHawk, this board is so much more enjoyable than most, the characters are all interesting in their own way. Assist for this team relates to the movement of the ball in my humble opinion.

Michael Leiker 4 years, 3 months ago

Completely agree, the ball was definitely stuck in people's hands on Monday.

Jared Grillot 4 years, 3 months ago

And that definitely relates to HCBS comments and others on the boards that the team was playing some me-ball that night and just didn't work together. Assists are a prime indicator of whether the team is playing like they are taught, or playing like they are alone on the court.

jrbill67 4 years, 3 months ago

Wow, if these 3 are sincere the sky's the limit because they have unlimited talent. If they play under control they are going a long way in the tournament.

Jack Wilson 4 years, 3 months ago

Your optimism is always refreshing. Always make me think.

There is plenty of blame to go around, other than TT. But some considerations: 1. The point guard sets the tone. 2. The point guard is, at worst, the "de facto" leader on the floor. 3. The point guard is the player that a team needs most to be "scrappy" or tough or a "rock" .. however you want to say it. 4. The point guard is the player than has to be composed, has to settle the team down rather than the other way around. 5. And it is necessary for a point guard to be able to create scoring opportunities for his teammates, when points are tough to come by.

TT has played point guard his whole life. He played point guad in high school and AAU. He was recruited as a point guard. And he played on the ball significantly over his first two seasons. I just don't buy into this idea that he's learning the position.

I guess my question of you is -- what would you do if you were the coach? I'm interested in your take.

douggiejug 4 years, 3 months ago

Tyshawn is the worst starting point guard in the top 25 ........ not even close

4 years, 3 months ago

Yet another brilliant piece of insight from someone who gave us this epiphany:

“Josh Selby can't play this year ...... morris squared will probably get in a fight and get suspended .......tyshawn will transfer because of his ego and the rest of your team won't win 10 games”

http://www2.kusports.com/news/2010/oct/28/ku-ranked-no-7-ap-preseason-poll/#c1406500

jaybate 4 years, 3 months ago

txrock,

If douggiejug really said those things, and you remembered them, then...

I'm changing douggiejug to thunderjug and doing my next act of waste elimination in him and...

Nominating your post for...

Posting Hall of Fame.

4 years, 3 months ago

Thanks, jaybate :) I would like to think my memory is that good; alas, I leveraged douggiejug's comment history instead. He/she is evidently a K-State troll, spewing mindless inflammatory drivel. I guess they receive partial credit though, since I bit and responded.

On another note, always enjoy your comments and psychedelic pics!

Clarence Haynes 4 years, 3 months ago

How many coaches out there are saying ...dang, I wished that I was 24-2 and a strong contender for a 1st seed!

sdolars 4 years, 3 months ago

Half the people on this site are acting like unappreciative fools. We have one of the top teams in the country and all you do is cry about how we lose 2 games out of 26 and cry about our point not being amazing. Well ..... follow a better team ..... wait there isn't one

Funhawk 4 years, 3 months ago

We're so proud of you, Tyshawn. Hold your head up. You work very hard. Hundreds of your fans realize that and want to say "thanks."

Jack Wilson 4 years, 3 months ago

sdolars: I think miss the point of the discussion (no pun intended). Most everyone is appreciative. We understand we have a better team that 99+% of the college basketball world. The discussion is past that. It's not crying about losing 2 games. You are looking at it too simplistically.

This is about whether we have a team that can get to the final four and thus have a chance to win it all. That, from my perspective, is the point of the discussion.

24-2 is nice this season. 33-3 was nice last season. Understand the point?

RockCaCO3 4 years, 3 months ago

Tyshawn, Marcus, Markief, we know you guys will rebound from last Monday. Your fans are behind you 100%. Kick some Buff Butt!

RCJHGKU!

REHawk 4 years, 3 months ago

And if, perchance, you don't kick some Buffalo butt...well, kick anything that moves within five foot of you. And never, no matter what, ever chance another peek at this site!

okiedave 4 years, 3 months ago

Here is how I see the season, warts, technical fouls and all. If all Division I teams were being graded on their performance for the year so far, Kansas would receive an A+ and be on the most favorable far end of any bell curve. Looking forward to the big dance.

HawkBBall 4 years, 3 months ago

Tyshawn, I know you can play defense when you want to. Just look at the first half of the ISU game in Lawrence. You hustled and cut off the drives by their point guard. It takes concentration and will power to hold it together for two hours. Let's see that effort this Saturday. When you are on the court as the point guard, play like one.

Marcus and Markieff, let's see if you take your medicine when the whistle blows for a foul by you. Don't pout or complain. Let's see when you take the bench that you don't talk back to the coaches. Lead by example!

Michael Luby 4 years, 3 months ago

First I just want to say I had the pleasure of meeting Thomas Robinson a couple days ago while I was walking to the Granada for a concert. I was so shocked to see him ( I dont live in lawrence) that I called him T-Rob. LOL! But, he was very kind and gracious. I told him I hoped he got better and got back in the game soon and good luck the rest of the season. I saw him walking around with his girlfriend Im assuming and he looked just fine to me. Im a nurse so I can tell if people are hurting. He had no limp or anything. He looked great and I am betting he will be back to full strength very very soon! And, Omg that guy is a freekin beast in person! He is not just tall he is like Lou Ferigno (sp?) at 6'9".

Secondary to this, our Jayhawks this year do not look like a final four contender anymore. That KState game was awful!! Hopefully those guys that were in the game can use this as motivation to get much much better in the focus and patience department. If they dont, they will suffer another early out in the big dance. Who else thinks the twins have the capabilities to go pro this year? I do, But hopefully Momma Morris will talk some sense into them as well.

jaybate 4 years, 3 months ago

Lulu,

You're my designated nurse.

Momma Morris, listen to the nurse.

Twins, listen to the nurse.

Doctors, listen to the nurse.

Michael Luby 4 years, 3 months ago

Thanks man! Even though I need to take this one on the chin.

FLJHK 4 years, 3 months ago

HEM, ict and drgnslayr:

I've followed your posts on this subject for some time now, and greatly appreciate your insight and analysis. And I've concluded that....well, I just can't decide with certainty. In theory I like the thought of Selby in the point, he certainly has the most upside over time. But...

The thought of Selby as the starting PG is derailed by several things. First and most significant, he's not healthy and presumably won't be until there are but a few games left in the season. Second, due to the suspension and injuries, the guy still has very little D1 experience, and that's a tough role to assume at this point in the season, Third, he's at best been erratic when he's played the point so far this season.

I do want Selby back in the starting line-up as the 2 when his foot so allows. Then slide him into the point if TT starts slowly. Brady has the make-up and tools to be a perfect 6th man, and should be the first perimeter player off the bench in any scenario. I am concerned that the point is the least accomplished position on this team, and that is counter to the usual formula for NCAA tourney success.However, in an offense that runs through the bigs, and the plethora of perimeter talent aside from the point, I still think we have a great chance of a special tournament run.

Best wishes again to Oakville with hopes of good health and a speedy return to these pages.

d_prowess 4 years, 3 months ago

Does the LJW have a policy about the word, "sucked"? I am asking because that is what Taylor said in the quote they use, but the LJW changed it to (stunk). Just curious.

SCHNBALL 4 years, 3 months ago

Jaybate, Oak, HighElite, we need to come up with a tournament slogan;

Muscle Ball vs The Poetry of Passes In Motion Grind It Out vs The Assist Brigade

Kevin Huffman 4 years, 3 months ago

I've officially been a KU fan since about '88 or so. The only "in control" PG I feel like we've EVER had was Adonis Jordan. Even Jacque Vaughn, who we all loved, had some "craziness times".

Christopher Hauser 4 years, 3 months ago

The adversity (some self imposed) that this team has been through this season will pay dividends in the near future, mark my words. This team will respond and in a big way. We all need to sack up and forget about what happened on Monday and get ready for the ride because it is going to be a great one. I am only interested in what this team is going to do in the future not what it has done in the past. We still have a lot of great basketball to be played.

jaybate 4 years, 3 months ago

"In Defense of Quantum T"

Lots of frustration with Tyshawn and understandable to some extent.

He is not a conventional point guard and so he does not have conventional point guard strengths and weaknesses.

Getting used to something new is stressful.

Tyshawn Taylor is a fabulous athlete still learning how to play basketball, and two thirds of the way through his first season learning how to play point guard.

(Sounds of an iLynchMob forming in pixel light around jaybate's alias and closing in with virtual rope.)

Despite the atypically large swings in the level of his play, proof of his goodness is ubiquitous.

TT started as a 2 on a team that went to the Sweet 16 team or better his freshman year. Try and name even four other KU freshman 2s in KU history, even 3, that started at 2 and played on a Sweet 16 team, as a freshman. Self asked him to be a third option impact player his freshman season, also, and TT always guarded the second scoring option on the perimeter.

TT's sophomore season, despite a horrible sophomore slump, he started, then was a first sub, then started down the stretch on a team that was number one most of the season and a number one seed in the NCAA tournament. Self asked him to be a glue 2 his sophomore season. He always guarded the first, or second scoring option on the perimeter.

This year, TT has started and played huge minutes almost every game and lead the team to a 24-2 record, while learning to play point guard, which is not even his natural position!! He always guarded the first option on the perimeter.

Though he has played a number of bad games, as all players have done in 3 seasons, he has only really been lit up for 30 plus once in three seasons on defense that I recall. Pullen hung 23 on him in the first half vs. KSU on Pullen's greatest game of his career--a game in which the unconscious Pullen went on to hang another 15 on Brady the second half.

For perspective, I watched a clip of Alan Voskuil's unconscious game a few years back in which he had 9 treys. Brady was taking most of the sting that night.

Shiz happens to good defenders guarding first options.

But great defenders are like great shooters, something that folks that are religious about defense, rather than logical, tend to forget.

Kurt Eskilson 4 years, 3 months ago

No malice, jaybate, but I do not believe it was Brady that Pullen scored on in the second half. It looked to me like EJ had the assignment. And I thought EJ was guarding him about as well as could be expected.

PhogAdvisory 4 years, 3 months ago

You know, I thought the same thing at first, but now I think it was just the copious amounts of Ad Astra that I downed to drown the pain that were doing that talking.

EJ only played 7 minutes. Not a whole lotta minutes in which to be an Effective Defense Presence. He also had 3 fouls in that time period, suggesting he struggled just as much as anyone.

JayhawkMafiaFamily 4 years, 3 months ago

"This year, TT has started and played huge minutes almost every game and lead the team to a 24-2 record, while learning to play point guard, which is not even his natural position!!"

TT was the #11 point guard of the 2008 recruiting class according to rivals.com. Not to mention he had Collins as a mentor before he became the starter. The point is not a position that TT should be still trying to learn.

jaybate 4 years, 3 months ago

So are you saying rivals projected him as a point guard, or are you saying he really did play point guard during the years he started in high school? This is a rather significant distinction and if he did start at point guard during HS, then I will be the first to admit my hypothesis holds no water.

Regarding his play at PG last season, it was inconsequential and he certainly never lead the team with Sherron any where on the floor (and Sherron was usually at wing point, when TT was dribbling the ball up the floor.)

jaybate 4 years, 3 months ago

Contrary to cliche, a great defender cannot be a great defender every night, any more than a great shooter can be hot every night. Defense at the first scoring option limit is as razor edged as jump shooting from 24 feet. If your concentration and physical fitness are even a hair off against either a great player, or a good scorer on a career night, then a cascade of bad happens and before you know it the team's best defender is being switched off the opponent's number one scoring option, while being told to stop, drop and roll to extinguish his burning jersey. Before you know it, the team's top defender is a three alarm blaze and everyone is screaming "let him burn to death, because he's not good enough!!"

Recall another great defensive KU 2: Mario Chalmers. Recall his night against Aaron Afflalo in a Madness game against UCLA. Recall him looking like a Hollywood stuntman on fire chasing Afflalo, until finally Self called for his ultimate fire extinguisher--Brandon Rush. Afflalo did not hang 23 in a half on Chalmers, because UCLA was not playing exclusively through Afflalo the way Frank "The Hit Man" Martin played exclusively through Mr. Curtain Beard, but Afflalo made Chalmers look just as bad, as TT vs. Pullen, at least defensively. Chalmers probably should have been sent to a defensive burn ward after that experience, and would have been had he not had Rush to bail him out. And Chalmers was a great, great, great defensive 2.

But, but, but, but...jaybate, Chalmers did not then run around like a chicken with his head cut off offense. Chalmers did not turn into Betty Crocker on crack baking pop tarts right and left.

True, true.

But Chalmers was not playing PG. He was not playing PG for the first season in his basketball career and learning on the job in D1. And, frankly, Chalmers playing UCLA at Pauley, or Anaheim, or whatever blow-dryer enabled Left Coast place it was, was not nearly as hostile of an environment as playing an arch rival in front of farm boys hopped up on grain alcohol and cow piss looking to feed KU to Brahma bulls crossed with cougars in the 8-sided experimental barn that is Bramlage.

Further, Self took one four game look at Chalmers as a freshman at PG and gave the job to RR, a guy he had benched the year before, then recruited Sherron Collins, and Chalmers never saw the point again in his KU career.

Point guard is serious business. Point guard, even when Self chooses to route a lot of activity through a wing point, like Chalmers, or Selby, or Brady, is the hub of the team's nervous system. Point guards, on a Self team, are the guys that get the dirty job of going to the press and being interviewed head on after losses and having to say: "I sucked. I'm responsible." Just ask Sherron Collins.

KU_FanSince75 4 years, 3 months ago

I am anxious to see the Jayhawks right the ship and play with a purpose against Colorado. The K-State road loss is past history now. Go Jayhawks!

jaybate 4 years, 3 months ago

Why do point guards have to do this for Self?

First, Self rarely takes responsibility for anything bad. He has a tremendously high ranking on the Shiz Avoidance Index in this regard.

Second, Self is an old 2 guard. 2 guards harbor deep and bitter resentment towards point guards. 2 guards think they could run the team better. 2 guards think they could be point guards. 2 guards often become coaches, because of this bitterness and because 2 guards spend their careers watching things develop, rather than always initiating things. The 2 is much closer to what a coach eventually does than what a PG does. What makes a great PG is being able to act in the moment in the middle of the action. Coaches are always watching acting from outside the action. 2 guards are like that, only a little closer to the action.

Self is heavily invested in Tyshawn Taylor succeeding as a point guard, yet sympathetically and pragmatically aware of what he is up against.

Why?

Self hasn't got another point guard on the roster, who would turn it over less, and who will get better from this year's experience and be here next season.

His alternatives are EJ, who is in a nightmare slump and wild as a March hare; Selby, who would turn it over more, and will be gone next season; Brady, who could easily do it, but would then leave Self with no glue and only one wing point in a gimpy Selby, and be gone next year; and Tyrel, who could do it, but probably could not keep making treys, or penetrate, and would then leave him without a trey shooting two. And Tyrel will be gone, too. These are not good choices.

Tyshawn is Self's best option for now and for later, even if Tyshawn is learning and volatile and prone to six pop tarts every fourth game.

jaybate 4 years, 3 months ago

But Self is also invested in Tyshawn, because Tyshawn is what Self dreamed about being--the fastest guy on earth playing the 2, and then being asked to heroically switch to the 1, learn on the job, and prove all the doubters about 2 gaurds as PGs wrong, by carrying his team to a 24-2 record in February, and then on to a ring in March. Talk about story book stuff entwined with personal legacies and mythology.

And any 2 that could pull off the switch from the 2 to the 1 and learn on the job in a junior season in D1, would have to be a superior athlete, like Tyshawn, or Kirk Hinrich.

But even Hinrich, who probably made a smoother transition to the 1 from the 2, played some PG in high school. Tyshawn, as I understand it, never did.

Tyshawn has concentration issues. He has gotten vastly better this season regarding concentration. Were he playing the 2, his levels of concentration might never be an issue this season. But at the 1 any loss of concentration triggers TOs quickly, and causes problems against number 1 scoring options.

Regarding his trend line, if one plots the whole season so far, and recognizes that every 4th game he has an off game, and allows for the KSU game to be the one horrible game everyone has once a season, Tyshawn's average trend line is still up. And his extreme athleticism has helped him compensate for several of his 5-6 TO games in ways that have helped propel this team to 24-2.

But here are the two really big points that I think should make board rats ease up on Tyshawn.

First, if TRob and Selby and Releford had been healthy against KSU, KU would almost certainly have won that game, despite how awful they played. TRob would have grabbed 9-10 reebs, had a couple dunks, and would have allowed sufficient depth for KU's bigs to take the fight to KSU the entire game; this alone probably would have overcome Pullen's unconscious game. Then add a healthy Selby scoring his 14ppg and freeing Brady to play more PG for the slumping TT and even on a 20 percent trey shooting night KU almost certainly would have won. Then add Releford being healthy and Self being able to put Releford on Pullen from time to time to really rough him up, and put him on the floor, well, I would bet everything in my piggy bank that KU would have won that game.

And that would make KU 25-1.

Next, what if TRobs mother had not died? What if KU had not had to interrupt its practice schedule with a trip back east and the huge emotional roller coaster that that entailed, and what if Selby had not been hurt for Texas and Tyrel had not had a bone bruise?

I'll answer that. KU would have beaten Texas and handily.

And that would make KU 26-0.

AsadZ 4 years, 3 months ago

From what I remember he was not the starting PG. He was coming off the bench and played different positions. He did not have a set/defined role/position.

jaybate 4 years, 3 months ago

ralster,

My recollection was that he did not play PG in high school, but I am hardly book on this.

jaybate 4 years, 3 months ago

Now folks would still be unhappy with Tyshawns up and down games, and they would still be upset that Pullen lit him up in the second KSU game, the same way persons were upset with Julian letting Durant light him up, and Darnell letting Beasley light him up, and so on. And people would still be upset about the Tyshawn drives into the lane some games and cannot get anything to fall. And they would still be upset with his 6 pop tart games.

But...

They would be 26-0. And number one ranked. And in position to run the table.

And even with all the injuries that have decimated the team's vaunted depth, the team is still 24-2.

Tyshawn is a helluvan athlete and now a pretty darned good basketball player struggling like hell with playing PG while still trying to improve his concentration span.

Last year I had to listen to board rats talk about Sherron not being any good.

This year I have to listen to the same about Tyshawn not being any good.

Every year I have had to listen to Brady is no good.

For three years I had to listen to Tyrel will never be any good.

All these guys had flaws. All players do. Tyshawn's are particularly annoying and apparent at the point.

He may not be able to carry us to a ring, but then again he might.

Presently, he seems our most viable option.

And we're 24-2.

The big thing I keep telling myself is that most players panic, when they are put under incredible pressure of a kind they have not seen before, especially when they are trying to make things work without all the pieces of the team they have grown to rely on. Tyshawn has grown to rely on TRob and Selby just as much as the other bedrock guys. Missing these two and playing in a very hostile environment the first time as a PG is a recipe for panic.

So: he paniced.

But he also has a history of learning, however slowly, from his mistakes, and of doing a lot of things right, and playing on teams that win a lot of games.

I can live with him until we recruit someone better.

And by next season, he'll never panic at Bramlage again, and his concentration span will be longer still.

Could he panic in a Final Four when things go wrong? Sure. KU's ring team paniced against UCLA the year before it won the ring.

Everybody's gotta learn from experiences...good and bad.

Rock Chalk!

PhogAdvisory 4 years, 3 months ago

Applauds

I was working on a post similar to this, but you said it faster (and with better jokes), so I concede to the master.

If I had to name a primary concern for this team (beyond the stretches of immaturity, of course), it wouldn't be TT at the point but rather the elusive "??" at the back-up PG. In recent years, KU teams that made a deep run in the tournament typically had a solid back-up PG to help out when the starter had an off-game (as all starters will). RussRob had Sherron, Kirk had Aaron... So who does TT have?

Everyone's talking about positioning Selby there, but he's done nothing this season to make that argument particularly valid. If anything his 1.8 Asst/TO ratio suggests we -need- to keep him in a 2/3 spot where he can shoot first and ask questions (for instance, "why is the ball in the other team's hands now?") later. I love the kid's aggressiveness, I do, but he's still a freshman and one who's played in barely half of the season's games. Gambling on potential is a fine plan in December, but we're nearing the end of February where consistency is key.

That having been said, here are some fun numbers:

Brady Morningstar has a 2.69 Ass/TO Ratio. I did a little searching, and the only Jayhawk guard (PG or otherwise) who beat that in the last 10 years was Aaron Miles his junior year (2.72).

Among the guards, he is tied (with Tyrel!) for most steals/game (1.5), and despite spending the first 16 games of the season producing enough bricks to build his dad a summer home in Vermont, he's shooting 50% from inside the line and almost 40% from 3-point range.

Another interesting statistic: Of the 4 central guards he's also taken the fewest shots (even Selby, who’s played about half as many games), suggesting that when he does shoot he (usually) makes sure they’re good looks.

High Asst/TO, good shot selection/percentage, solid defense, good composure (barring the Cal game, but c’mon, who didn’t wanna slap the ball out of that punk guard’s hands by the end of the night?)... If I were to make a PG checklist, it would look an awful lot like this.

I don't think Brady has the Intangible Leadership Qualities that make a first-string PG. But it seems to me that he's the perfect pick for a "steady hand" back-up, and I'm puzzled as to why no one's really mentioning him here. It seemed to me that Self was slowly shifting him into that role during Selby's injured stretch. I'd like to see that continue, that way when Releford and Selby are back at 100% we don't have so many deserving guys slugging it out for time at the 3-spot.

jaybate 4 years, 3 months ago

Your glue was better than my impact.

Mega kudos.

Michael Luby 4 years, 3 months ago

Jaybate, that is so true its not even funny.

RockChalk26 4 years, 3 months ago

24 - 2 record and you want a change at point guard? Get real

TT is doing fine and he will bounce back better then ever Saturday against the Buffs.

justinryman 4 years, 3 months ago

Micheal Jordan couldn't win a title until he had a team around him.

So what makes everyone(well almost everyone) think that Taylor is the reason this team has only lost 2 games???

I said it earlier and I will say it again. You win as a team, you lose as a team. That is something that the '08 and '88 teams knew and they played that way too.

It's fine if a player wants to take some of the blame, but for everyone to pile on top of a kid is a little rediculous. I mean how many of us work in front of 15,000+ screaming fans everyday? None?? So we do not know what he has to deal with on the court.

justinryman 4 years, 3 months ago

Plus it's a good thing that we don't have to play Colorado anymore. I mean it seems like we have overlooked our last two opponents before we have played them this year and have lost.

Hopefully we don't have to play them in the Big12 turny!!!!

Hank Cross 4 years, 3 months ago

I agree with the idea of moving TT to 2 and letting Selby play point. I believe, however, that it's an academic argument at this point. It's going to be a readjustment to re-integrate Selby back in to the team as he recovers from his injury, couple that with him playing a new position and there aren't enough games left before the tourney to straighten that out.

Theutus 4 years, 3 months ago

I still think the only thing stopping EJ from being a great impact point guard for us is the fact that he has no leash to settle in...

His ball handling is closer to his body, it's better than Taylor's... He's got a nice shot, he can pick up back door alley oops better than our bigs... His defense is improving a LOT, he was the best man we put on Pullen.

Honestly, I think it's crazy that we haven't given him 1/10th of the opportunity that Taylor/Selby have gotten.... If they make a mistake, nothing... crickets. If EJ makes a mistake, he sits the rest of the half. It's very apparent to me that the kid plays nervous because of this....

We are shooting ourselves in the foot by not cutting the leash and letting him do what we brought him here to do. Is he going to make some mistakes? Sure. Is that any different from Taylor? No. And for the record, I think both Taylor and KU would benefit from off-loading that 1PG pressure from him... He could excel a lot more at the 2 as a slashing guard.

jaybate 4 years, 3 months ago

I agree that EJ is going to be good.

But he leads the team in cross court TOs.

That does not cause a coach to add links in the chain.

Theutus 4 years, 3 months ago

I understand EJ makes turnovers, but quite frankly TT is a turnover machine...

So what do we have to lose? Honestly. And furthermore, we haven't given EJ a fair shake to settle in and get confident at all...

We don't even know if he will/won't settle in and excel, because we haven't given him the opportunity. That's all I want to see, I want to see him treated no differently than TT or Selby. Because those two essentially have a free pass to be as terrible as they want and stay in the game. (And i'm not bashing on them, they have had great and awful games, i'm just saying it's obvious they get special treatment, and at this point quite frankly I don't think they've put out enough "spectacular" to justify that).

jaybate 4 years, 3 months ago

EJ doesn't just make TOs. Every player makes TOs. EJ throws the ball across court to no one. And sometimes it goes into Coach Self's hands. Giving EJ a longer leash right now would be like giving Nero more matches.

EJ has enough leash. He just needs to quit throwing the ball across court to no one for starters. Then he needs to stop throwing it across court to Bill Self.

EJ was doing fine a month ago. 8-10mpg and solid glue numbers and occassionally some good PG assist figures. He has proven to me that he has a D1 trey. He's got everything but concentration and stimulation control, as in he gets overstimulated.

Now, he has fallen into a slump just like Brady did. Brady finally had to play mop minutes to get back. EJ is actually getting good minutes for a guy who makes cross court passes to no one and yaps his way into technicals as a backup.

If Self weren't trying to build a ring team two deep at every position, EJ would never see a minute. But Self is giving him every minute EJ can take. EJ just can't take much during the slump.

I still think EJ could get it together and get back to deserving 10 mpg. With TRob and Selby out, and some more Saturday Monday games, he's going to get the chance.

I expect him to turn it around the next game or two.

I wouldn't be surprised to see him come up big in the B12 Tourney and surprise everyone.

Why?

Because EJ appears to be one of the few back court players right now, other than BStar, without a bum something. EJ's wing appears healed. Any guy that can throw a cross court pass to no one two games in a row has got to have strong wings.

Once the brain connects to the wings, he is gold.

jayhawktalk 4 years, 3 months ago

Arguments for Selby or EJ at the point aside, I think TT would be a average 2, at best. I haven't seen him consistently make entry passes into the post, and we have all seen his shot from the outside. I guess the argument could be made that his penetration would compensate for his outside shooting and entry passing, and that argument may have some merit... I guess.

I will say, agree 100% on EJ looking as good as we have seen him against KSU. Improved defense, dramatically, and he just looked all around more comfortable and engaged. Guy was busting his tail. Good for him in celebrating the dunk; I loved seeing it, and I think the game was already decided at that point. If the refs want to give him a "T" for his exuberance, warranted call or not, so be it. Celebrate and have some fun, EJ! It was great to see him excited. Seriously, who didn't smile when he threw down that dunk, despite the embarrassing circumstances that were the game itself? I've said this once or twice, not that I think it will happen, but I would like to see EJ play some at the 2-3 spot, maybe alongside TT or Brady while they handle responsibilities at the point. Not that I don't think he is capable of playing PG, but it seems to me that he could settle into the game in that capacity without all the pressure and accompanying jitters of having the PG responsibilities on his shoulders.

Hank Cross 4 years, 3 months ago

I just don't see Self enacting such a radical change as bringing in either EJ or Selby to run the point at this stage. It would take a few collapses in a row to get Self to make the switch. Even then, Self's likely response would be to grow even more conservative to avoid a flame out.

You've been right all along that EJ should've had more playing time to develop another option (and the same could be said for Travis). But, the time for those opportunities for seasoning has passed. And now the team has to live with the consequences. We saw the result in the KSU game when there was nobody on the bench who could come in and make a big impact.

Jack Wilson 4 years, 3 months ago

Good observation on EJ's defensive improvement .. you know my thoughts are right with you on EJ .. just let the guy play, give him some rope, don't bench him on every turnover ... but you have to commit to playing him major minutes. More importantly, to letting him play through errors without getting yanked.

I know you noticed .. TT turns the ball over three times, then gets the hook vs. KSU. EJ makes one and he's immediately out. I would get that with Sherron, or top guy. But I don't understand Self's thinking on who he give rope to, and who he doesn't. Still, completely puzzling.

Kye Clark 4 years, 3 months ago

Respectfully disagree on your assessment of EJ. First of all, saying he was the best man we put on Pullen is like saying someone was the valedictorian of summer school. Quite frankly I have seen very little improvement in his defense. His ball handling has been suspect. He refuses to drive the lane. And his shot showed early promise but has been pretty poor of late (his 1-1 from 3pt against K-State notwithstanding).

I would agree that his performance is more than likely affected by the quick hook. The only reasoning I can see behind having him on such a short leash is that Self cannot have a perimeter rotation of 6 guys, and that he was given the opportunity to beat out some of the other players and failed to do so. I think when he has been given steady minutes he has produced a quality stat line, but again I think his propensity to stand behind the 3 point line is hurting him on the offensive end. Almost 2/3 of his shots this season have been from behind the arc, a higher percentage than Selby who Coach Self has told has to be more aggressive if he wants to play.

All my criticisms of him aside, I do think it's puzzling he hasn't gotten more of a look. I don't think moving him to the 2 is the answer though. Consider that Self all ready has options of Brady & Tyrel to play there who he trusts more than EJ, as well as the fact that moving him to the 2 would limit "what we brought him here to do", and that is to make plays, both for himself and his teammates. He was brought in as a point guard, someone who was supposed to be able to drive the lane and create scoring opportunities. He hasn't shown that yet. I think he can still be a good player, but his defense has to get better and he has to be aggressive with the ball without turning it over.

FLJHK 4 years, 3 months ago

There's just too damn many great posts on this site. I'm hooked. I think I'm headed for 12 steps.

Just today I'd focused on the points of ict, HEM and Drgnslayr among others, then of course the Master (Jay)Bate comes along and I spend an hour digesting his typically great post, then PhogAdvisory cleans up with some terrific research and analysis.

You folks are killing me. I'm self-employed, and this site is undermining my productivity. Poverty beckons. Just cut it out!

jaybate 4 years, 3 months ago

Dang, if we are having this kind of a negative economic effect, we're going to have to get DOD to fund us as a new branch of economic warfare and unleash us on some enemies! :-)

SCHNBALL 4 years, 3 months ago

Just watch the team assist numbers for the rest of the year,it will reveal the future for this team.

jaybate 4 years, 3 months ago

The great thing about posting here is that we all get to be wrong from time to time, get straightened by others, and bounce back better.

But you are right most of the time.

Rock Chalk!

100 4 years, 3 months ago

Lots of Jayhawk nation is back posting like champs. Great to see the cream rising back to the top.

Wanted to send some good vibrations out to Oakville as he recovers from his surgery.

Also would like to send peaceful energy via this amazing technology called the Internet to Trobb as he continues to recover from his surgery & his loss of his family members. Trobb you & your sister are in our hearts, now & forever.

Also would like to send a belated but massive "thank you" to Tyshawn & the Twin's moms for supporting Trobb through these tender weeks. You are in all of our thoughts & prayers as well.

Lastly I would like to apologize to our fellow posters, players & coaching staff for claiming like a gradeschooler that our Jayhawks were ready for the # 1 ranking. I really believed we were, even with the injury issues. Clearly we weren't ready.... Yet.

So when will we be ready?

Here's the best part. We won't be ready for the #1 ranking this season. Not until the final buzzer sounds, after we've climbed the entire mountain....

Alas, we will be ready for the #1 ranking when it matters.....

The night of April 4th, when we're not playing basketball anymore, but running across the court in jubilation, cutting down some thread that hangs from ten feet.....

JayhawkMafiaFamily 4 years, 3 months ago

I'm liking the idea of Brady as the starting point guard more and more but that would mean TT would have to come off the bench. Before Selby got hurt he started along with the Twins, Reed and TT. I actually think this would be good for TT. I think it would help take some of the pressure off of him and help him focus more once he gets on the court.

http://bleacherreport.com/articles/611274-kansas-jayhawks-tyshawn-taylor-missing-the-point

CasperCorps 4 years, 3 months ago

Its not Tyshawns fault... Nobody could of guarded Pullen that day.. Dude couldn't miss.. It was the fact we didn't guard that other guy that went five for five is why we lost.

Bill Shaw 4 years, 3 months ago

TT's play reminds me of Collins when he was nominated for the Dolly Madison award.

docileboy 4 years, 3 months ago

I used to wonder why Taylor walked the ball up the floor, then it became clear that when he tries to go any faster than that he is out of control and as far as defense he couldn't guard the people on my over 60 team. In fact overall this is probably the worst defensive team the Jayhawks have put on the floor in a long time.

schrephawk 4 years, 3 months ago

what a bunch of spoiled (so called fans).

Commenting has been disabled for this item.