Kansas defeats Swiss National Team, 83-79

  • 10 a.m., Aug. 8, 2012
  • Fribourg, Switzerland,

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Welcome to the comeback club: KU vets rally new-look Jayhawks to second Swiss win

Kansas senior forward Kevin Young dunks the ball during the Jayhawks' exhibition game against the Swiss national team on Wednesday, Aug. 8, 2012, in Fribourg, Switzerland. The Jayhawks won the game, 83-79.

Kansas senior forward Kevin Young dunks the ball during the Jayhawks' exhibition game against the Swiss national team on Wednesday, Aug. 8, 2012, in Fribourg, Switzerland. The Jayhawks won the game, 83-79.


— Elijah Johnson believes Kansas University’s come-from-behind, 83-79 victory over the Swiss national team Wednesday had greater significance than an early August exhibition game.

Instead, it was more like an introductory course for KU’s eight newcomers on how the Jayhawks play.

“Now the team knows that it doesn’t matter if we’re all the way in Switzerland or in the Final Four. We’ve always got a chance to come back,” Johnson said. “I want to show these young guys that that’s what we do here no matter what.

“It’s a time we just clench in, and nobody knows what’s going to happen but Kansas.”

Much like a few of their NCAA Tournament games a few months ago, the Jayhawks thrived when it mattered most on Wednesday, ending the game on a 10-2 run after trailing 77-73 with 1:30 left in the fourth quarter.

The run was sparked by Kevin Young, who for the second straight day was KU’s best player in the clutch.

After senior point guard Johnson missed two free throws, Young started to “play Superman” according to Johnson, grabbing an offensive board and putting it in for two.

About a minute later, he grabbed another Johnson miss before putting in a stickback to tie the score with 30 seconds left.

“I knew he was going to come through in the fourth quarter,” KU freshman Andrew White said, “just because the guys that play the hardest, usually something good happens.”

Young gave KU the lead for good thanks to his knowledge of the game.

KU’s Jeff Withey blocked a Swiss shot with 20 seconds left, and as he caught the block, the shot clock expired.

While most players stood around to wait for the shot-clock violation, Young knew from his previous experience with international play that if the offense possesses the ball when the shot clock goes off, no violation is called.

“So I started taking off. I beat everybody down the court,” Young said. “Jeff was still holding the ball, so I looked back to see what was going on.”

After a few seconds, Withey passed ahead to Travis Releford, who threw it to Young for a slam that put KU up, 81-79, with 13 seconds left.

Young screamed out his satisfaction following the dunk, one that resulted in Swiss coach Sébastian Roduit kicking a black barrier by his bench in frustration.

“Young made all the plays down the stretch,” Self said. “He drives me nuts because he does things all the time that bother me. Then when the game’s on the line, he usually comes up with some extra possessions and some key plays. That was certainly the case (Wednesday).”

Switzerland missed a long three-point try with five seconds left, and White sealed it by grabbing the defensive rebound and putting in two foul shots with 2.6 seconds left.

“I think that was the best part of this trip so far is we had a major test early,” White said. “I know it was nothing like a game, but it felt like something we needed to win. We had all these fans here, all these people. We needed to win this game.”

Johnson also wanted to play well for the approximately 200 KU supporters in the crowd.

“It made me feel good to look over and see the coaches’ wives smiling and knuckling down and showing us the same thing they show us when we’re in the States,” Johnson said. “We’re doing it for our program, and I felt like our program came over here with us.”

White led KU with 16 points on 6-for-9 shooting. He also went 2-for-3 from three-point range.

“He’s not scared,” Self said. “We’ve got some other guys out there playing passive, and here’s a freshman … I don’t know who our leading scorer is in the two games we’ve been here, but it may be him (White leads KU with a 13-point average). That’s not a lot of points, but still though, that’s pretty good that he’s aggressive enough to believe that he can score.”

Johnson added 14 points, while Young contributed 12 on 6-for-7 shooting.

Withey also posted a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds.

The Jayhawks won despite arriving at Fribourg Arena just 45 minutes before their game after leaving a sightseeing trip later than they had previously scheduled.

KU also shot just 19 free throws compared to Switzerland’s 38. In the first half, the Swiss had 20 free-throw attempts to KU’s four.

“For us to come out of here with two wins under the situations that we’ve been dealt here is pretty good,” Self said. “I’m not going to use that as an excuse, and I won’t let the guys use it, but there’s no question the guys are a little jet-lagged to say the least.”

KU, which improved to 2-0 on the exhibition trip, will play AMW Team France at 1 p.m. CDT, Saturday in Paris.


Joe Ross 8 years, 1 month ago

Quick...Where has a Kansas win by the score of 83-79 been significant?

Tim Orel 8 years, 1 month ago

Dunno. I think it also involved an international player from Europe. It also required a comeback in the final couple minutes.


jhwklifer_portland 8 years, 1 month ago

1988 championship game against Oklahoma... I already miss Coach Manning.

ParisHawk 8 years, 1 month ago

Out on a lake surrounded by some of the most magnificent mountains in the world (the Jungfrau has the highest elevation in Europe), and all they can say is "this is my first or second time in a boat". You'd think these guys were from Kansas or something ;)

Cameron Cederlind 8 years, 1 month ago

Everybody look at me cause I'm sailin on a boat.

RJ King 8 years, 1 month ago

I noticed the comment also. I grew up water skiing at Tablerock and Pomme de Terre and was fortunate to have visited all but six states in the US by the time I went to college. To me the comment was a reminder of where some of these players have been. Granted Kevin has experienced international play, but it's not exactly surprising that after growing up in the other Perris - in the landlocked county of Riverside - his inaugural boat ride might not happen until now. I'm sure a jetlagged Kevin was equally impressed with the scenery. The boat comment was what the reporter chose to reveal. We don't know what else was said or asked..

ParisHawk 8 years, 1 month ago

Good grief, posted under the wrong story :(

jaybate 8 years, 1 month ago

Its insane getting Ws jet-lagged in Switzerland without BenMac and with freshmen White and Peters coming up big.

I smell upperclassmen--Johnson, Withey, Releford, and Young--willing another season to remember.

Last year's team committed to proving they could carry on what the FOE team started.

This year's team seems committed to finish what last year's team came so close to.

Difficult comes easy.

Impossible takes a little longer.

For those missing Danny, I think the team is already bonding with Norm. I think Norm's character shown while standing up to "the wrong way guys" at St. John's, then bouncing back with Donovan in Florida, then returning to Kansas to man-up to this year's challenge of replacing DMan has to put him on the same wave length with the four upperclassmen returning to man-up to the challenge of avenging "the wrong way guys" wrecking their dream season last year. Last year's team may have had a chip on its shoulder, but this year's team has a score to settle with "the wrong way guys." Norm may just be the perfect replacement for this team.

Gunnery Sergeant Releford, saddle up the platoon. No point in being bashful about this. Hill Forty-and-0 is the mission. The next objective in this training exercise is Paris. The enemy is all "the wrong way guys" that ever stole something from the good guys. Even though no defense is being played right now, as per General Self's orders, Colonel Roberts says there will be live rounds in use, so fire for effect. Paris needs liberating by the good guys yet again.

Jack Wilson 8 years, 1 month ago

Second Swiss win .. is it too early for assessments? Perfect time for impressions, but not conclusions. We're getting a sense about a lot things with this team that could, of course, change over time. But one thing is for certain. Coach Self still plays each game to win that game. Simple concept. But the idea of "player development" over the course of a season has always been a discussion point (except for last season). Remember, he wanted to play each player 18-20 minutes on this trip. Notwithstanding that from a minutes available perspective that idea was impossible, it is now a mere fantasy. Not happening. He gets into a game and he doesn't want to lose. That's what he's always done.

Minutes for development are hard to come by even on this trip. Lucas 4/5 minutes. Traylor 7/5 minutes. Doyle 5/5 minutes. Adams 7/10 minutes. Ellis 12/11 minutes.

The guy played to win the game. White gets 26 well deserved minutes this last game. The hot hand. No rotations here.

God bless him. But perhaps he should consider sticking to his plan to rotate these guys nearly equal to get a real feel for their level of play. Let them get in the flow of the game. I'm curious as to why he would contemplate that .. playing nearly equal .. tell everyone of his intentions, and then so blatantly go against what he said he was going to do.

Perhaps a good question for Jesse to ask him over a dish of raclette and potatoes (hope I said that right).

Anyway, updated power rankings. Self appears to have some preferences at this point - prior ranking in ( ). McLemore is hurt:

  1. EJ (1)
  2. Withey (2)
  3. Releford (3)
  4. White (6)
  5. McLemore (5)
  6. Young (7)
  7. Ellis (4)
  8. Tharpe (8)
  9. Peters (10)
  10. Traylor (9)
  11. Lucas (11)
  12. Adams (12)
  13. Doyle (13)
  14. Wesley (14)

Jack Wilson 8 years, 1 month ago

You could throw darts, but I really don't think it would be as accurate. You might land on Adams as #1. But I get what you're saying. Just a way to discuss performances. A couple examples .. You don't think that White's performances and minutes say something about how Coach Self views his role right now, as we speak? Further, you don't think that Peters' play and Self's comments give a touch of insiight that he may be creeping up the pecking order a bit? Or that Young may have elevated his level of play some?

Those to me seem to be the biggest takeaways from the first two games.

I will admit, I am surprised that Doyle didn't come in and dominate immediately ..... shocked, more like it.

Chris Shaw 8 years, 1 month ago

HEM: You and I agree on things and we also disagree on certain things, but in this instance I agree with you. There was no reason before this trip started in two or three different articles and state you're going to play everyone 18 to 20 minutes and then not follow that plan. Why would you make a statement like that in the first place? Look, I don't want any other coach than Bill Self, but it is little things like this and his stubborness to play newbies that drives me nuts at times.

Obviously, you and I are not there, but I am also a firm believer that some kids need more minutes than others to get in the "Flow" and figure out how to "Slow the game down", but still play at a speed and aggresiveness that Bill Self likes......that any coach likes.

And.............everybody is a competitor, but what is the ultimate goal here? Is it to win games or is it to actually figure out your personnel? I think Bill Self is doing a great job with bonding experience idea of the trip, but like HEM, a little confused by Self's statements and then box scores that reflect opposite of that.

Chris Shaw 8 years, 1 month ago

I would put White at #3, Releford #4, KY #5, Ellis #6, and McLemore at #7 (Simply because of his injury).

Sam Constance 8 years, 1 month ago


I totally appreciate your take here, but just a few points from the devil's advocate side of things to consider:

Aside from "developing" the freshmen, Self also needs to get the new load-bearers accustomed to the role of leaders on the team. As much as we all love Johnson, Releford, Withey, Young, they were all complimentary players in some fashion or another last year. The Jayhawks went as Robinson and Taylor went, because they were asked to carry the team. Self has to balance getting the freshmen time with needing to get guys used to their new roles. I think there's some element of Self just not wanting to lose (which I think is partly based on his belief that there is no teaching substitute for winning in a real game situation), but I think there also may be another element.

Think about it this way--he has two "types" of players to develop this year: completely green newcomers who haven't sniffed a moment of NCAA action, and returning veterans, who've never been asked to lead the team. I think he's assuming that the veterans are at a place where their primary mode of growth is competition, whereas with the newcomers, he still believes there is a great deal of shaping and molding to be done in practice alone. Therefore, it's partly a matter of fitting the training need to the situation.

Of course, another element might be that he's still in the midst of teaching the hard lessons of college basketball to the newbies. In other words, just because these games don't matter doesn't mean you don't have to earn your PT to see the court for big minutes. It's entirely possible that the minute distributions we're seeing are directly related to what the players have shown in practice, and he's sending the message that to get PT is to practice well, and that is the ONLY way to get PT.

I really don't understand why he would say something to the effect of playing everyone equal, and I remember thinking that it was BS when he said it. He's never done that, so I was doubtful that he would start now.

I have a feeling that we'll start to see more of the newbies when we start playing exhibition games in the U.S., as well as against some of the more overmatched low major types we'll play in the early season.

Jack Wilson 8 years, 1 month ago

MarchPhog/BigManU: I think that Self go them into the game flow, their initial minutes, and said "Oh my." Meaning they were so bad .. "green" .. as Phog stated .. that he just couldn't take it.

Interstingly, he didn't coach defense much, as reported. But a lot of his comments to players and issues that led to the bench were defense related.

He probably just saw that, as expected, many of these guys just weren't ready for prime-time. The Swiss national team is better than UMKC.

I see Phog's points. And they make perfect sense. I guess I side with BigManU on this. I'm ok with an embarrassing loss, or two, or whatever in Europe here. Heck, in the second half of a game, just play Adams, Doyle, Peters, Traylor, White, McLemore, Ellis and maybe Tharpe. Who cares? Just see how it goes.

But the fact is .. no matter what we want .. Self is the man and knows what he wants to do. And he does not believe in developing younger players by playing them.

What I'd suggest is that this approach foretells what we'll see in the season. He isn't going to let anyone develop by playing unless 1) they are clearly a rotation player and deserving of those minutes (likely White/McLemore/Ellis), or 2) he has to (example, Withey gets hurt and he has to play Lucas).

We know the guy, don't we?

HawkKlaw 8 years, 1 month ago

There's a reason why Bill Self has won more games since he came to KU than any other coach in the NCAA. The guy doesn't like to lose, no matter what he says about playing people equally.

Also, this may be incredibly inaccurate, but in his mind, maybe he meant that he's going to try to give everyone the same opportunities while on this trip. For instance, Lucas and Traylor have played about the same amount of minutes thus far.

It's pretty obvious that he's got the guard rotation figured out barring any major injuries/setbacks (Starters: EJ, BMac, Releford. Backups: White and Tharpe). And he's got a pretty good feel for the post-player rotation (Starters: Young/Peters/Ellis and Withey. Backup: Young/Peters/Ellis). Methinks Lucas and Traylor are battling it out for that very last post-player spot in the regular rotation, which could explain why they're being played about equally.

Plus, it's not easy to teach a team how to win. That's usually what HCBS does in the nonconference, but in this case he has a four-game Euro tour at his disposal. Why not start the lessons early this year? Practice makes perfect!

HawkKlaw 8 years, 1 month ago

There's a reason why no NCAA coach has won more games that Bill Self during his time at KU. The guy doesn't like to lose and he'll avoid it at all costs.

I really thing he's got his rotation pretty much figured out (maybe more-so than he would like to admit), so he really doesn't have to play everyone equally to see what he's working with. He's got his guard rotation (Starters: EJ, BMac, Releford. Backups: White, Tharpe) and his post-player rotation (Starters: Young/Peters/Ellis, Withey. Backups: Young/Peters/Ellis). It appears that Lucas and Traylor are battling it out for that very last post-player rotation spot, but whichever wins out is still not likely to see much of the court this year (maybe that's why they have both been played about equally on the Euro tour). So maybe it's just a matter of not needing to play everyone equally, as he had originally intended.

But I'll put my money on the fact that Bill Self just isn't comfortable sacrificing a W so everyone can get equal PT. It's not in his nature!

Jonathan Even 8 years, 1 month ago

It also could be that now that the hawks have seen what it takes to grit through to a win, he could go on and play the newbies more the next few games. The starters know they have the confidence to take any team to the wire and come out with a win. If the he gives the newbies more minutes that the starters were getting, couldn't they still average out per game to get 15-20 minutes? They've seen how you need to play to win, if he goes on and gives them more minutes then they will know that if a loss comes it will be because they didn't hustle, play defense, etc. and can take his words to heart in future practice and strive to be better.

KemDooKU 8 years, 1 month ago

What competitor likes to lose - only losers like to lose. If the guys want minutes then earn them by playing good ball when their on the court. We are 14 deep with guys who have some game - so Bill has options but he does not have time to wait on potential so either the younglings take off the diapers or sit by Daddy Self. It won't be the first time at KU that potential had to ride the Pine because it was still developing mentally/physically. White's not afraid and the rest of the newbies better figure it out quick or dust off the Pom Poms and sit on the bumm and watch the game like the rest of us.

Jack Wilson 8 years, 1 month ago

KemDoo: Believe me, I agree with you generally. But these are exhibitions. Self has noted why we're doing them, that we have a big freshman class and this is perfect timing for a trip like this. Look, I personally don't think all of these freshman scholarship players will cut it. But this is the time to get a look at them, isn't it?

I don't want to lose, but I'd rather give freshmen valuable experience and time on the court than worry about beating the Swiss crap team. These games mean nothing. It's funny, you say after two exhibition games that Self does not have time to wait on potential. Really?

How about a full half with Withey, Releford, EJ, Young on the bench?

But I'm banging my head against a wall here. Wasting time even talking about it.

Chris Shaw 8 years, 1 month ago

There is a reason they are called exhibition games. They don't count! I agree with HEM........I don't think all the scholarship players will cut it, but at the same time you have to see what you're dealt with for the upcoming season.

KemDooKU 8 years, 1 month ago

Also the new guys should take note - After White's mother left KU and went back home what's the first thing he did- went to the gym and shot hundreds of baskets in the gym. Was he looking for a party or some girls to hang out with........NO. Big boy basketball has arrived- your high school days of dominance are over - everyone on the team dominated in High School. Men from the boys starts now so either put in the extra time or invest in a box of tissue if you don't like being a spectator.

Adam Collins 8 years, 1 month ago

I wonder how Tharpe's shopping trip has been going...

KemDooKU 8 years, 1 month ago

The freshman maybe won their State high school tournament - Bill won a NCAA National Title and makes over Four Mil a year - he plays who he wants when he wants.

wrwlumpy 8 years, 1 month ago

As the smoke clears, the freshman emerging is Andrew White. Before they left Lawrence, White missed 7 in a row from outside using the smaller European ball. He seems to have adjusted since last Saturday. Get rid of all the vollyball size basketballs after you leave Paris. Now go beat two pro teams from France and get some sleep. Try the Duck at Maxine's.

Tony Bandle 8 years, 1 month ago

Agreed, although the sauce is so good that you could cover a cereal box with it and still have a better meal than half of the restaurants in America!!

Chris Shaw 8 years, 1 month ago

The international ball is the same size even though they have the ability to go a litle bigger based on their rules. FIBA uses a 29.5 Molten Ball and ULEB uses a 29.5 Nike ball that they just transtione to.

Marcia Parsons 8 years, 1 month ago

No matter who plays, what I like the most is that the "never say die" attitude from last year is carrying over. They refuse to believe they are going to lose and keep fighting to the end. That may be the best thing we got from last year, that whole new attitude. I love it that it didn't leave with T-Rob and the seniors.

Tony Bandle 8 years, 1 month ago

Not that I am necessarily predicting it, but looking at the schedule, Kansas could be 13-0 at the start of conference play in January. Toughest games...Mich.State at Atlanta [this will be a war] and at Ohio State [but I think we've got their number!!]

Chris Shaw 8 years, 1 month ago

I will be going to both of those games! Hope I don't jinx them!

Cameron Cederlind 8 years, 1 month ago

I like the Michigan St game. Izzo usually has a bumpy first part of the season but finishes strong. With this early practicing and game play, I think this pushes us ahead.

Robert Brown 8 years, 1 month ago

Does anyone know if the Swiss National Team is any good?

nuleafjhawk 8 years, 1 month ago

Swiss steak is good.

Swiss cheese is good.

Swiss Miss is good.

I'm hungry now.

dustfan 8 years, 1 month ago

Well according to Wikipedia they are ranked 75th in FIBA. Of the players on the roster it lists Sefolosha is the only one that plays outside of Switzerland. So I am going to say no.

tical523 8 years, 1 month ago

Bill kind of tough on Kevin there. . . "he does stuff all the time that bothers me" ouch. I know KY may be very unconventional especially for the Bill system but I absolutely love what KY brings to our team, my favorite player last year per minute (opinion). I wish every player had the tenacity and effort of Kevin.

Tony Bandle 8 years, 1 month ago

C'mon, Coach Self....every party needs a wild man!!

What would Animal House have been like without Blutarsky!!??

RJ King 8 years, 1 month ago

and Dean Wormer, "The time has come for someone to put his foot down. And that foot is me."

PS Your Delta Tau Chi name will be "KY." Why? Why Not?

HawkKlaw 8 years, 1 month ago

(In response to HEM's post wouldn't let me reply under the post. Is there some new setting where there can only be a limited number of responses to one post or something? Anyhow...)

There's a reason why no NCAA coach has won more games that Bill Self during his time at KU. The guy doesn't like to lose and he'll avoid it at all costs.

I really think he's got his rotation pretty much figured out (maybe more-so than he would like to admit), so he really doesn't have to play everyone equally to see what he's working with. He's got his guard rotation (Starters: EJ, BMac, Releford. Backups: White, Tharpe) and his post-player rotation (Starters: Young/Peters/Ellis, Withey. Backups: Young/Peters/Ellis). It appears that Lucas and Traylor are battling it out for that very last post-player rotation spot, but whichever wins out is still not likely to see much of the court this year (maybe that's why they have both been played about equally on the Euro tour). So maybe it's just a matter of not needing to play everyone equally, as he had originally "intended."

But I'll put my money on the fact that Bill Self just isn't comfortable sacrificing a W so everyone can get equal PT. It's not in his nature!

Tony Bandle 8 years, 1 month ago

As Flounder from Animal House would say, "Boy, oh boy. oh boy...this is great!!"

jaybate 8 years, 1 month ago

Sometimes people miss the fine print of Self's comments and impute meanings other than what he intends.

Technically he said he wanted to play guys 15-20 mpg, but he did not say who and he did not say every game; I.e., some guys will play 15-20 mpg certain games, other guys 15-20 mpg other games and some guys 15-20 mpg every game. We can infer this was what he meant, because there are not 15-20 mpg for all 15 players each game.

Self also said that if it were close at the end, then he would go for the win with his best players. He has done so both games. I suspect he doubted his young team would be in all the games against pro teams used to playing together, especially when he de-emphasized defense.

It seems he has done so far what he said. Perhaps some have interpreted his meaning other than as he intended.

Some different guys may get longer looks in Paris. White got an unusual amount of PT, because Ben got hurt and they needed a trey gun on the court.

Peters seems the pleasant surprise inside. White outside.

Paris, here they come.

jaybate 8 years, 1 month ago

P.S.: regarding Self getting on KY, well, this just means he is going to depend on KY for a lot of minutes and so he's putting KY back in the toughening box immediately. There are reasons he is using KY. Kevin is still relatively new, a born coach and a tough nut and has to be welded into the inner core of EJ, TREL, and JW. Those three are tight. Its clear. Its also clear there is some competitiveness chemistry between Jeff and Kevin that Self wants to turn into cooperativeness. Solution: haze Kevin till the other three accept him as part of the inner circle to make the hazing stop. Also, Kevin has some tunnel vision about what can happen and Self is going to widen that vision asap. But Self thinks KY has the right stuff, or he would not put him in the toughening box. Remember: EJ, TREL, and JW have spent entire seasons in the toughening box. You don't get "rock solid" without going to the box. Kevin, get used to it. Self is just giving you his feminine bitch side, the nag side, the side where he starts insisting you have to give him EXACTLY what he wants, or he is going to make your life a living hell till you do. All the married men aliases should understand my analogy immediately. :-)

HawkKlaw 8 years, 1 month ago

I don't think he "has" to, but IMO it's in his best interest. KY is has national championship experience (something you can't teach to the young'n's) and he played a very important role all season last year. He's much farther along than the rest of the bigs (besides Withey). I suspect Bill Self is putting KY in the "toughening box" (as jaybate put it) because KY may have what it takes to be the starter next season. Self is testing him. And it appears that Perry Ellis has some ground to make up if he's going to beat out KY or Peters for that starting PF spot. If I were Bill Self, I would feel like I have to use KY a lot this season, even though we are pretty deep with bigs.

HawkKlaw 8 years, 1 month ago

I didn't realize anyone on here had as dirty a mind as I! Well done.

jaybate 8 years, 1 month ago

  1. KY can take it. Self Self ever puts some one there that can't take it.

  2. KY needs it, because he over focuses on getting one thing right--focus too narrow--and so makes errors due to related to broad focus perception.

  3. KY over focuses , because he was an impact player and impact play habituates narrow focus. KY is heady like Chalmers was. Smart impact types. Heady guys have to be broken out of that heady-ness, the same way wild guys have to be broken out of the wildness, and timid guys have to be broken out of their timidity, and fiery guys have to be broken out of their fireryness. Its not so much a power struggle with Self, as it is Self using a power struggle to break guys out of over reliance on one side of themselves in order to be able to tap into both sides. Tyshawn and Thomas broke into both sides of themselves early last year. Travis did too. EJ did but it didn't show much because of the knee. Mario did his last season. Marcus too. Tyrell his last season. Darnell his last season. Rush was kind of born in both.

jaybate 8 years, 1 month ago

  1. EJ, Travis and Jeff have been through the Self crucible for many years. KY for only one. They started last year. He subbed. They were highly sought afters. KY was not. There is a seniority barrier there. Self wants that gone, because he needs KY to be a fourth block of granite, because Self is going to have to start one first year guy--Ben if healthy, Andrew if not. And even if he does start Perry ahead of Kevin, Kevin is going to play most of the last 5-10 minutes of each half in the big games.

There are only two ways to accelerate acceptance of an outsider:

a) put him in harm's way of a brutal opponent and let him take a beating until the veterans are angered into accepting and defending him to end the abuse; or

b) haze him endlessly until the teammates become protective of him to end the abuse.

Last season, Self left Withey in with the split lip not to toughen Withey, but to let Jeff prove he was tough and be accepted into the inner circle to end that kind of abuse.

The inner circle has to learn that to let any one be picked on is to let the team be divided and conquered by an opponent.

jaybate 8 years, 1 month ago

  1. Big men are territorial by temperament and by role in the paint. Last year there was some tension for awhile between TRob and Jeff. TRob was not sure Jeff was tough enough to cover his back, yet Jeff was a tall enough presence to be capable of challenging TRob's dominance. Two bigs have to learn to let one be dominant most of the time, and the other dominant some of the time. They have to trust each other to do this, because each believes he is the bull in the painted pasture otherwise.

This pre season I sense Jeff and KY are playing some head games probably for instinctual reasons. KY wants to dominate in order to beat out Perry. That crowds Jeff a bit, because he is expected to move into the dominant role. Tension results. Jeff pimped Kevin saying Justin Wesley may have the inside track. Kevin responds with his awesome athleticism and risk taking that is a direct challenge to Jeff's dominance in the paint.

Self has to manage this to get Jeff front and center and KY into role something like TRob played, but less dominant. Hazing Kevin will in time effect Jeff the same way letting Jeff get butchered effected Thomas. It brings out the dominant, protective big brother. It triggers acceptance.

Hope this clarifies what I am getting at.

queenofpack 8 years, 1 month ago

Give Milt some time he Will make the adjustments, trust me :)

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