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Monday, November 26, 2012

SJSU guard James Kinney scores 30 in memorable night at fieldhouse

Kansas guard Elijah Johnson pulls up for a bucket over San Jose State guard James Kinney to end the Jayhawks' field goal drought during the second half on Monday, Nov. 26, 2012 at Allen Fieldhouse.

Kansas guard Elijah Johnson pulls up for a bucket over San Jose State guard James Kinney to end the Jayhawks' field goal drought during the second half on Monday, Nov. 26, 2012 at Allen Fieldhouse.

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Podcast episode

Press Conferences & Post-Game Interviews

KU coach Bill Self talks after 70-57 win over SJSU

Kansas coach Bill Self talks to reporters following the Jayhawks' 70-57 victory over San Jose State on Nov. 26, 2012.

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Podcast episode

Press Conferences & Post-Game Interviews

Jeff Withey, Elijah Johnson and Travis Releford

Jeff Withey, Elijah Johnson and Travis Releford talk to reporters following the Jayhawks' 70-57 victory over San Jose State on Nov. 26, 2012.

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Box score

KU-SJSU

At one point during San Jose State senior James Kinney's 30-point explosion at Allen Fieldhouse on Monday, the hot-shooting guard and Kansas University coach Bill Self enjoyed a fun-filled exchange of words.

"It wasn't trash talk at all," said Kinney, a 6-foot-2-inch guard from Champaign, Ill., who provided most of the offense for the visitors during a 70-57 KU victory. "I'm familiar with coach Self because he coached at Illinois, but there wasn't any trash talk. It was all just friendly. It wasn't anything major. I'll always remember that. This is the most historic place I've ever played, and you remember moments like this."

There's little doubting that the Jayhawks also will remember Kinney, who shot 11 for 26 for the game, including four of 12 from three-point range, and added seven rebounds and five steals during a relentless second-half onslaught that turned a 24-point Kansas lead into an eight-point advantage with just under four minutes remaining.

At one point, with KU leading 60-36 and 11:42 to play, Kinney scored 10 straight points to bring the Spartans (2-3) back from the dead while making things a little uncomfortable for the home team on a night in which senior center Jeff Withey posted a triple-double.

"I never doubt my abilities," said Kinney, the only SJSU player in double figures. "Give Kansas credit. They're a great team, a great defensive team. They got size, athletes, everything. I wasn't gonna give up. I'm not gonna get embarrassed out here."

The second-half comeback, in which the Spartans responded to an 18-0 KU run with a 16-0 run of their own, actually was the second time Kinney and company took a shot from the Jayhawks and kept going. Kansas' 9-1 run in the first half that pushed the Jayhawks' lead from 31-24 to 40-25 was answered by a 9-0 run from San Jose State that included the final seven points of the first half and the first two of the second.

"I just don't think we have any fold in us," SJSU coach George Nessman said. "It's just not who we are. We didn't come here to play for a while; we came here to play the full 40 minutes."

Although he could not help but smile about his own performance after the loss, Kinney said the more important thing was that his teammates learned they could compete with anybody.

"This is just one game of a long season," said Kinney, who, prior to Monday, listed Pittsburgh's Petersen Events Center, which features the "Oakland Zoo" cheering section as the toughest place he had played. "We played the game, we didn't come out with the result that we wanted, but we're gonna put this one behind us."

As for how Allen Fieldhouse stacked up to the home floor at Pitt: "The environment wasn't as hectic as here. The only place I can compare to this is probably Utah State. I mean, when we walked in for shoot-around and practice (Sunday) night, the first thing I saw was the national championship banners, and you realize you're in a building where many great players have played. Paul Pierce, everybody. (Kirk) Hinrich, (Nick) Collison, all the NBA guys. So it's a special opportunity to come in here and compete."

Comments

Mike Bratisax 2 years ago

Big time player who appreciates the history of AFH and these types of challenges.

Kiss_My_Phoggy_Haase 2 years ago

Think we should thank him for putting up 30. Self was pissed about it in his post game radio interview. Gotta feeling this is gunna light that fire under us to play a lot tougher d and stop playing so nice.

Mel Clare 2 years ago

Kinney: Coach did you see that shot? Self: Yeah, wish my guards could guard you! Kinney: Coach I just hung 30 on your boys! Self: Yeah, but you still lost by 13!

Mike Bratisax 2 years ago

I agree..but 30 points are 30 points no matter how you look at it. Not many players hang 30 on KU

Robert Brock 2 years ago

Kinney made our defense look pretty bad at times. On the bright side, it gives Self a chance to roll tape and discuss the problems with the thought in mind of getting better.

Cameron Cederlind 2 years ago

Whenever I think of college basketball, I definitely think of the greats like Utah State ಠ_ಠ

Ross Hartley 2 years ago

I did not get to watch the game (yet) but agree this guys stats aren't impressive. How can we let this team go 18-2 on us?

Jeremy Wilhelm 1 year, 12 months ago

Start by shooting and missing 3s for the majority of the shot attempts during that run. Turn it over some, and play weak defense on their one and only scorer, and... Voila!

jaybate 2 years ago

James Kinney can play. Period.

ku_foaf 1 year, 12 months ago

Did he score all points 30 in the 2nd half? I don't think he'd scored at all with only a couple of minutes left in the first half. Travis has shut him down. Travis had a great game!

That was one of the best 2nd halves any player has had in Allen Fieldhouse. The guy went nuts. The two fakes on two different KU players almost in one motion was pretty memorable.

But...Withey was awesome! One of the best games ever by a KU player! Twelve blocks! He had five in about the first 6 minutes.

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