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Wednesday, November 21, 2012

SLU coach impressed by Jeff Withey, KU ‘quarterbacks’

Kansas center Jeff Withey soars in for an alley-oop dunk against Saint Louis in the first half of the championship game of the CBE Classic, Tuesday, Nov. 20, 2012 at the Sprint Center in Kansas City, Missouri.

Kansas center Jeff Withey soars in for an alley-oop dunk against Saint Louis in the first half of the championship game of the CBE Classic, Tuesday, Nov. 20, 2012 at the Sprint Center in Kansas City, Missouri.

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Podcast episode

Press Conferences & Post-Game Interviews

KU coach Bill Self

Kansas coach Bill Self talks to reporters following the Jayhawks' 73-59 victory over Saint Louis on Nov. 20, 2012.

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Podcast episode

Press Conferences & Post-Game Interviews

Jeff Withey and Travis Releford

Jeff Withey and Travis Releford talk to reporters following the Jayhawks' 73-59 victory over Saint Louis on Nov. 20, 2012.

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Box score

KU-SLU

— As soon as his post players fought around Kansas University center Jeff Withey, Saint Louis coach Jim Crews watched helplessly as the Jayhawks countered with a lob over the top.

“They’re well-schooled. They throw it right back to that backboard like it’s the back of the end zone like those NFL quarterbacks,” Crews said following his team’s 73-59 loss to KU on Tuesday night at the Sprint Center. “It seems like they’ve got quite a few of those quarterbacks, so that’s not good from our standpoint.”

The Jayhawks had six players record assists, led by nine from KU senior Elijah Johnson.

Meanwhile, Withey tied a career-high with 25 points on 7-for-12 field-goal shooting.

“He gets it so deep,” Crews said. “He’s got good hands, and he’s so long.”

All seven of Withey’s made field goals came off assists from teammates.

“If you get behind him, he just buries you deep,” Crews said. “So we’re trying to get help from different positions, but they’ve got some good players all over the place. As soon as you plug this hole, another hole opens up. That’s why they’re pretty good.”

One place SLU tried to sag was as the 3 spot, where in the first half the Billikens let Travis Releford run free on the perimeter.

The senior took advantage by scoring 21 first-half points on 6-for-11 shooting while going 4-for-6 from three.

“That wasn’t real wise on my part, I guess,” Crews said. “I was trying to take away some of the inside. Actually, even when we did (guard Releford tighter), he hit a couple good shots. But we had a hand up on it pretty good.

“He shot the ball a little bit better than we thought he would — or I thought he would. The players might not have thought that, but I did. So that wasn’t real wise. He got them off to a good start. There’s no doubt about that.”

Crews said turnovers were one of the main reasons his team struggled offensively in the first half. SLU had 10 first-half giveaways before turning it over just twice after halftime.

Perhaps not coincidentally, the Billikens played even with the Jayhawks (34-34) in the second half.

“We came out flat. I don’t know the reason for that,” said SLU forward Cody Ellis, who led his team with 19 points. “We’ve got to be ready to go from the very start.”

Comments

southwindjay 1 year, 5 months ago

Ellis only posted nine minutes, would like to see him more.

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mikehawk 1 year, 5 months ago

I really don't want to see that team any more. Nice to beat the MU fan proxy. But let's not see them in our bracket in March. One time is enough. That is a good team even though short handed of players and head coach.

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fasteddyn 1 year, 5 months ago

Enjoy the year we are currently in and remember who the coach is so you don't have to worry about who will wear the big boy pants next year or any year it will be in good hands.

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kusayzone 1 year, 5 months ago

It took some incredible 3 point shooting by SLU to keep this one close. I am so surprised how HCBS offense of high low is so established that no one can stop it. The only question remains, who replaces Whithey? Who is going to put on the big boy pants next year???

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