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Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Keegan

Aggies will test Kansas

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The Missouri game, in case you haven’t heard, is Saturday in Allen Fieldhouse.

The website “Bovada.lv” has released college basketball player-of-the-year odds, and Kansas University forward Thomas Robinson (7/4) is the slight favorite over Kentucky’s Anthony Davis (2/1), who is way ahead of Ohio State’s Jared Sullinger (13/2).

All of which at the moment means nothing to Robinson, an athlete locked in enough to know the only way to get it done is to train his focus on the next opponent and all the details that go into defeating it.

In this case, that’s Texas A&M on Wednesday in College Station. The Aggies’ season has been fraught with injuries, illness and embarrassing losses.

Even so, they’re getting better. Their last three home games: three-point loss to Baylor, two-point loss to Texas, nine-point loss to Missouri.

Khris Middleton, A&M’s most accomplished player, returned for Saturday’s Missouri game from his second knee-caused inactive stretch. Without Middleton, the Aggies were a tough out for Kansas in Allen Fieldhouse, where KU won, 64-54.

“We’ve got to play tougher than the first time,” Robinson said before Monday’s practice. “We were not only struggling, but if I remember right, we were down in the first half.”

Robinson remembered right. A&M took a 30-28 lead into the locker room.

“They’re going to be a much better team now,” Robinson said. “We have to go down there prepared with our minds right.”

Defensively, the Aggies like to clog the lane, which creates three-point opportunities. Only Tyshawn Taylor (3-for-6) made them pay in the first game. The rest of the players combined to make one of 14.

“They sit their off-side guy right in the middle of the lane, so it’s kind of hard for us to work our game plan, which is inside-out,” Robinson said. “We’ll just have to work around it, but it’s not like it’s our first time playing them. We know what to expect.”

Robinson and center Jeff Withey both are prolific scorers, which drives home the importance of feeding the post. A&M won’t make it easy.

“Coach (Bill) Self’s going to find a way for our game plan to work,” Robinson said.

He carries a heavy load, and mid-February can be when players feel it most.

“You have your days you’re tired,” Robinson said. “Some days you feel good. It’s all part of the season. But when I’m playing, it’s not a problem. It’s not something that will stop me. I’m in pretty good shape right now to finish the season off.”

Comments

KU_Alumn_2000 2 years, 9 months ago

Two keys stated in the article that should lead to KU winning.

1: KU knows what to expect with A&M clogging the paint...since we've played them once.

2: HCBS will game plan around A&M's defensive strategy to ensure success.

Words do not describe how much I hope we humiliate and destroy Mizzou by at least 30 on Saturday......and do it again in the Big 12 tournament final.

Robert Rauktis 2 years, 9 months ago

I think a "who is" is to be Implied after "Robinson" as an inferrance...a sport's writers technique for chattiness. Three lines in this format means it should be a clear. Here lots of baggage words need to be laundered and then the train reorganized.

The New York Post hasn't ever taught concise or clear style for something that matters, let alone sports "writing". They learn there bulk confuses and sells more words, allowing more advertising space in the margins. "And always show the hat next to the body".

Think the written equivalent of Vitale filler or a phrase OMG times fifty.

fansincewilt 2 years, 9 months ago

Actually, it is a complete sentence. The word "all" can be an adjective, pronoun or in some cases, an adverb. Here it is a pronoun used as the subject of the sentence. "Means" is a state-of-being verb making it a complete sentence with a long appositive phrase following.

jaybate 2 years, 9 months ago

fansincewilt, you are correct and know why.

kusportsdipcom is wrong and does not know why.

Very sad to see incompetents that do not know what they do not know.

Ryan Shelton 2 years, 9 months ago

Fansincewilt is right. "All" is the subject and "means" is the verb. What makes it so confusing is the prepositional phrases "of which" and "at the moment" which break up the simple subject and the simple predicate and cause confusion. Surely it is worded a bit confusing, and it's debatable whether or not there should be commas inserted, but it does complete a thought nevertheless.

Apparently I don't know what a lunch break is for.

Danny Hernandez 2 years, 9 months ago

Somehow, I got the gist of what the writer while taking the slow road fraught with wrong turns was trying to say; See, I too can be a sports writer!

jhox 2 years, 9 months ago

aTm is a trap game if I've ever seen one. They gave us all we wanted in Lawrence, and now they're getting healthy again. Guys are saying the right things, but let's hope they really understand we can lose this game if we think ahead to MU, and don't come ready to play.

Mike Kendall 2 years, 9 months ago

Go K-State! Man, I can't believe I said that.

Jason Bruner 2 years, 9 months ago

I disagree with everyone. I don't want anybody else to beat misery before we demolish them at home.

nuleafjhawk 2 years, 9 months ago

Respectfully disagree. I've wanted Missouri to get beat every game, every sport for the past 45 years.

REHawk 2 years, 9 months ago

A+M began play this season with high regard from league coaches who predicted that they would tie for the league title. Middleton's lingering injury and Billy Kennedy's health problems combined to derail the Aggies in early play, so that by league season their squad sputtered and failed to play to expectation. However, the players are still there; and with the return of Middleton, perhaps significant minutes from a recovering Dash Harris, we could be in for a battle with a highly regarded group of players who have now adjusted to the coaching change and situation. I look to see a real cliffhanger for the Jayhawks tomorrow night. Kind of like what Bill Self said weeks ago about Jeff Withey. He is blessed with height, and wakes up every morning as a 7 footer. Aggies are now a squad which wakes up as a talented group whom league coaches predicted to share the trophy. Beware!

Jason Keller 2 years, 9 months ago

I am the nation's most passionate Kansas State fan..... tonight.

SaltLakeHawk 2 years, 9 months ago

slayr, TRob doesn't strike me as someone who starts his day with 3 twix bars.

He looks more like someone who rolls outa bed and arm wrestles a grizzly bear.

I see your point, though.

Mike Bratisax 2 years, 9 months ago

Someone needs to tell TRob that when passing to Withey, chest high and above. I'm sure its been addressed already. And both are showing an extreme learning curve. I can easily seed Withey as a Big 12 POY contender next year.

Aaron Rosenthal 2 years, 9 months ago

That is a perfectly fine sentence. Also, if you're going to criticize the writing you should probably spell inference correctly.

Ditto all the A&M is dangerous comments. Middleton, Harris, Loubeau and Turner have been part of a successful program in their 3-4 years. I'm sure they're all sick of losing and even with no NCAA prospects see themselves as a good team on a given night.

Tony Bandle 2 years, 9 months ago

Hey, Jayhawks..remember, these guys are traitors also, as they scurry off to the SEC [the Screw Education Conference]. Please send them off with a real butt tatooing.

Home Record: 15 - 0 Away Record: 5 - 2 Neutral Record 2 - 3

Last time I looked, except for Duke and North Carolina, the rest of Division One NCAA games are played on neutral courts. I'm just sayin'.

If we lose any of these next four conference games, I won't jump off a bridge.....jump in front of a bus, maybe.....but not jump off of a bridge!!

Kye Clark 2 years, 9 months ago

Almost all of that neutral record was played in the first weeks of the season. A team such as our was just getting their footing in the early going, so as always consider the context of those losses (the Davidson loss is admittedly bad).

Mike Bratisax 2 years, 9 months ago

Umm..will the bus be parked at the terminal w/brakes applied? We lose again to Mizzou..I'm going for the Brooklyn Bridge.. Or maybe the Verrazano..ending up somewhere in the East River gives me the willies.

ejlumus 2 years, 9 months ago

How are officials assigned (picked) for games?

The last game in the sh$t hole was very troubling. I hope "lil brother" is treated fair and can kick their a$$!!

Benjamin Piehler 2 years, 9 months ago

I'm more worried about playing OSU away; but take them one at a time, I guess.

hawkmaster 2 years, 9 months ago

Changing the subject, but something for you all to chew on.

Which "starting" KU bigs would you rather have on a team (do not consider big man depth, only the starters)? Would you rather have KU's 09-10 bigs of Aldrich/Marcus Morris, 10-11 bigs of Marcus/Markieff, or the 11-12 bigs of TRob/Withey (and to make it more difficult, assume that Withey will play like he has in the last 4 games subsequent to his poor Mizzou showing).

I never thought at the beginning of this season, that I would be considering the current KU combo with the bigs in the prior two years. Without getting into a lot of stats, comparative records, etc. which is difficult to do because of the different dynamics of each team - - I believe there is a good argument that TRob/Withey may be the best. But with the huge caveat, only if Withey plays the remainder of the season more like he did the past 4 games.

So let the debate begin....This would be a good article for LJW writers to develop!

Steve Brown 2 years, 9 months ago

KU bigs are like a box of chocolates, no bad choices, unles you draw Randy Canfield or Paul Mokeski.

Just kdding Randy and Paul....

Mike Bratisax 2 years, 9 months ago

Big Mo lasted more than a decade, most at Milwaukee in the NBA. A star? No But he played his role well.

texashawk10 2 years, 9 months ago

Do not underestimate Texas A&M. Khris Middleton was a legitimate preseason Big 12 POY candidate, David Loubeau is a solid player with lots of experience, Dash Harris if he plays minutes is one of the better PG's in the Big 12 and Billy Kennedy is a very good coach (He built that Murray St. team this year) so this is a game that KU could definitely lose if they are looking ahead to Saturday. It does worry me that this isn't the most focused of teams KU has had in recent memory and that they have yet to play a complete game this season. A game against a deceptively good team after right before the biggest rivalry game on the schedule equals trap game for a KU team that has been caught looking ahead a couple of times this season against lesser opponents.

Mike Bratisax 2 years, 9 months ago

Billy Kennedy built Murray St? Good info. Didn't know that.

Mike Kendall 2 years, 9 months ago

Bummer---Missery lost. And the biggest crybaby award goes to--------

Steve Moore. I hope some of Jayhawk Nation saw what a huge fit he threw when he fouled out. Unbelievable!!!!!!!!!!

kesmithstl1 2 years, 9 months ago

he's a football player. Doesn't know the rules of engagement. All he does is flop, flop, flop no matta what!

kesmithstl1 2 years, 9 months ago

ok, did some research, he is not the football player. Still a flopper though.

jaybate 2 years, 9 months ago

MU is a light weight that is being exposed.

Mike Bratisax 2 years, 9 months ago

They are still 1-0 versus us this year AND I totally disagree that they are light weights. What they are is small in the front court.

Did Sullinger hurt his position in the draft by coming back this year?

jaybate 2 years, 9 months ago

MU has taken awhile to expose, but KSU has done it twice. KU exposed them, but didn't get credit, because we were younger and choked.

They are vulnerable to the Chicago way.

"They put one of yours in the hospital, you put one of theirs in the morgue. Its the Chicago way, Mr. Ness." --The Untouchables

Re Sullinger, I don't know the dollar difference between 1, 2,and 3, so I cannot say, but I think he would be in the top 3 of either draft. He is still a great one.

The biggest mistake he made was not coming to KU and Self and Manning. Its rare to get such good coaching from two persons at once. Self will go down as one of the all time greats one day. Manning may already be the best big man coach ever in college ball, though his dad, Ed, may have been as good. That was not smart to pass up for Thad Matta. His pro career would have been better and longer had he gone to KU and so he would have become much richer.

John Randall 2 years, 9 months ago

Regarding Sullinger and Self/Manning development of post players:

I don't think we can make a judgement now on quality or longevity of an NBA career that hasn't begun. Draft position is a different question.

I definitely agree that any "big" with a few years of S/M tutelage will be nearer to stepping into an NBA rotation than they would be without that advantage. The NBA inside game takes more development time than for perimeter players, so what a player gains from 35 college games as a go-to guy will be at least as much as having a front row seat at 80+ pro games, IMHO. Throw in over a hundred practices vs 25 or so if you like ... real practices, not game-prep sessions.

I don't mean that kids considering when to make their jump can, or should, agree with me when the $ign$ start floating around. I just think the results will work out that way.

Mike Bratisax 2 years, 9 months ago

I have to agree w/you on KSU playing to their weakness but I still look at Mizzou as a team of over-achievers. MU always seems to get into foul trouble against KSU and maybe that's what was meant by being exposed.

Still, light weights doesn't seem a fair label. I wonder how this team would have fared under Anderson.

And if I'm a big..no doubt KU is where to go. Manning makes bigs NBA ready. How far they get after that is up to each individual player. Coming off a solid year..DA was ready for that next level. I just hope this injury doesn't set him too far back.

Anyways..thanks for the insight jay.

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