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Saturday, April 13, 2013

Elijah Johnson, Travis Releford solid at Invitational

Kansas guard Elijah Johnson slaps hands with teammate Travis Releford after a breakaway bucket by Releford 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 guard Elijah Johnson slaps hands with teammate Travis Releford after a breakaway bucket by Releford 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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Kansas University senior Elijah Johnson has not suffered a case of the jitters at this week’s Portsmouth Invitational for NBA prospects in Virginia.

“I never even thought of it. A lot of our practices (at KU) consist of NBA people being there,” the combo guard from Las Vegas told hoopsworld.com. “I look at them (NBA scouts) as part of the crowd. If you pay attention to them, they can make you nervous. Maybe some players did. I didn’t even think about it.”

Johnson scored seven points off 3-of-7 shooting (1-of-3 on threes) with eight rebounds, three assists and one turnover while playing 33 minutes in helping his K&D Round Landscaping team to a first-round PIT victory. Johnson also scored five points off 2-of-6 shooting (1-for-4 on threes) with four assists, three turnovers and two rebounds in 26 minutes in a semifinal-round win.

“I need to do a better job of getting my teammates the ball in position where they can do something with it, instead of giving it to them at the wrong times, too early or too late,” said Johnson, who is considered a possible second-round pick in the June draft. “I need to make better decisions for them.”

Asked if there’s an NBA player he patterns himself after, Johnson said: “I can’t really say that. A player I definitely respect more (than) everybody else ... that’s (Brooklyn’s) Deron Williams, the way he makes the game in slow motion. It’s at his pace all the time. I think it’s too easy for him, almost.”

KU senior guard Travis Releford, who is playing for Brown’s Restaurant, scored eight points off 4-of-10 shooting and grabbed six rebounds while playing 24 minutes in a first-round PIT victory. Releford scored 10 points off 4-of-12 shooting (2-for-3 from three) with two rebounds, two assists and one turnover in 27 minutes in Friday’s second-round win.

The teams of Releford and Johnson will meet in today’s finals.

Of Kansas Citian Releford, NBA.com wrote: “Though he hasn’t been ignored, Releford never played a starring role in four seasons at Kansas and probably never will on any team in any league. That’s not to say he doesn’t have a chance to play in the NBA. Releford is a rarity in today’s game — a guy who knows what he is and doesn’t deviate from it. Thursday’s game was a prime example. He ran the floor and got some easy baskets. He made the extra pass when the situation called for it. He took good shots. He played like himself. While it’s doubtful he’ll hear his name called on Draft Night, he’s a guy who can make an NBA team in the right spot.”

Releford, by the way, measured 6-foot-41⁄4, 204 pounds (with a 99-inch reach and 81.5-inch wingspan) at the tourney. Johnson measured 6-foot-21⁄2, 193 pounds (with a 97.5-inch reach and 76.5-inch wingspan).

Jordan Brand game tonight: Future KU players Joel Embiid and Wayne Selden will play in the 2013 Jordan Brand Classic at 7 tonight at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y. The game will be shown on ESPN2. Selden, who is ranked No. 26 nationally by Rivals.com, is a 6-5 shooting guard from Tilton (N.H.) School; Embiid, who is ranked No. 37, is a 7-foot center from Rock School in Gainesville, Fla.

Best in 21st century: Collegespun.com has deemed KU the most successful college basketball team in the 21st century, based on performance in the NCAA Tournament. A team receives 16 points for an NCAA title, 12 for a title-game loss, eight for a Final Four loss, four for an Elite Eight loss; two for a Sweet 16 loss; one for a round of 32 loss; and zero for round of 64 loss.

KU wound up No. 1 with 68 points. North Carolina was second (64), Michigan State (63) third, and Duke and Florida tied for fourth (59).

Comments

Jay Dogger 1 year, 6 months ago

Is that height with or without shoes?

I wish they would have mentioned their A/TOs.

That's cool we're #1 in the 21st Century, but I can't believe we only have one Title. We seemed to leave a few on the table. Of course, other teams can say the same thing. And we got a bit lucky with the one we one. Regardless, being a Jayhawk is the best!

KULA 1 year, 6 months ago

The sad truth is, Bill's a Big Game choker. He seems to be cut of the same coaching cloth of Marty Schottenheimer--great regular season coach, terrible big game coach.

Phil Leister 1 year, 6 months ago

That's a narrow sighted comment. A choker? He's won more games in the NCAA tourney than anyone since he's been here. Yeah only one title, but 'choker' is inaccurate.

Ron Franklin 1 year, 6 months ago

KULA, Didn't you recently call out everybody's 'stupid' comments after the Michigan game? What a flipping hypocrite you are.

JBsJAYHAWKS 1 year, 6 months ago

There is no way you can compare Bill to Marty - well you can, but to say Coach is a choker is going overboard - you must admit, the poor officiating and I don't get into officiating as an excuse, but when calls aren't made, the outcome is affected. We Luv You Bill and Our Seniors !!

Mike Bratisax 1 year, 6 months ago

Would like to see both Travis and EJ have success playing professional basketball but probably won't be in the NBA.

Mike Bratisax 1 year, 6 months ago

You must be having a bad day KULA, usually I find myself in agreement with your comments (not that my agreement carries much weight). Compare Coach K over the same time period an HCBS comes out ahead in both NCAA victories and regular-season. Compare him to Rick Pitino and it's not even close. We've beaten UNC three times in the NCAA over Roy.

Also, what is the definition of a "big game"? If it's always going to be the last game played then every coach except the NCAA champion's choked at the end of the season.

The simple truth is that winning the NCAA is extremely challenging and very often the winner had at least one game in the tournament won by either luck, a bad call or some other type of controversial play.

Finally, how have the Chiefs or Chargers been doing lately?

KULA 1 year, 6 months ago

Yeah, another bad Spring day--must be ANOTHER tournament hangover. I define choking as losing a game you should have won, so no, not every team except one chokes in the tournament. And the Michigan loss has to be the biggest choke in tournament history.

Louisville now has three NCAA Championships, as does UConn, both in years when we shoulda coulda been there to do something about it. I guess the list of Elite Blue Blood programs should be expanded. Or maybe we should be bumped from that list.

Phil Leister 1 year, 6 months ago

Just STFU. You sound idiotic. Bump us from the blueblood group, Michigan loss the biggest choke in NCAA history. That's comical.

KULA 1 year, 6 months ago

Why would you want me to STFU if I make you laugh?

Phil Leister 1 year, 6 months ago

You're so right. Keep spewing that crap. It's funny how dumb your comments are. If you think so little of Self, who would you rather have as our coach? Anyone, pick one...

KULA 1 year, 6 months ago

I think Bill's a great coach--especially in the regular season. I hope he wants to become a better coach, but I have concerns about that because he refuses to watch lost tournament game videos. Most coaches don't have great tournament success until they're older and Bill's still relatively young. I'd love to see him become a better tournament coach, but there's no denying he's has more than his share of tournament flops. Different players, same system(coach)...

rockchalkchalkin23 1 year, 6 months ago

Hmmm, tough one. Brad Stevens

From Wikipedia on Brad Stevens under Coaching Style

According to Stevens, in one of his first games as head coach, he was nervous and "felt like our team played on edge" because of it.[80] He decided that a team's play will reflect the mood of its coach; a calm coach means a team that will remain poised in difficult game situations, while a nervous coach means a team that plays on edge. "I don’t want to lose a game because of my approach," he told himself.

Stevens' teams are built around solid basketball fundamentals and good team work, rather than individual basketball skill.[50] His teams are known for their defense, forcing opponents into uncharacteristic mistakes.

Mike Bratisax 1 year, 6 months ago

" And the Michigan loss has to be the biggest choke in tournament history"

No doubt..I still can't believe Webber called a time out with the game in hand.

KULA 1 year, 6 months ago

Michigan didn't have the game hand, they were behind. And that was just one mistake. We, however, did have the game in hand and had to make several mistakes to lose it. If only Bill had called a timeout...

Jack Jones 1 year, 6 months ago

The sad truth is ~ your a big time whiner.

theend 1 year, 6 months ago

What a hypocrite you are. You attack me for saying the same thing.....but you put it just a bit differently and think it is ok. Hypocrite.

KULA 1 year, 6 months ago

theend and Blown (above)--I'm criticizing the coach here. In my previous posts, I was defending the players.

KULA 1 year, 6 months ago

Do I detect a bit sarcasm, ralster? Even so, some of your comments are spot on, kidding or not. Mentally chokes his players? Absolutely! I called out two years ago that Bill was ruining EJ. Instilling fear of failure in his players with his repeated quick hooks and shattering his confidence. How do you think that taught fear in the back of the mind affects a player when he has to take a big shot? When it came down to the biggest shot of his career, EJ...passed.

Mike Bratisax 1 year, 6 months ago

Coach Self's 2008 championship team was made up from his first recruiting classes at KU and I think there was some difference in how he treated freshman from before 2008 then after the championship year.

But I still think you need to level the playing field when you define choking in "big games".

bennybob 1 year, 6 months ago

Ha!

don't worry Ralster, i thought it was funny

ahpersecoachingexperience 1 year, 6 months ago

If we're the best team of the century why do I wake up once every march in a pool of my own tears? And why have they only been happy tears once?

Jeremy Wilhelm 1 year, 6 months ago

Name me a team where this isn't true most every year? Florida repeated and a few other teams have won twice in this time, but many of those teams have failed to even reach the tournament at least once in the last 13 years, let alone advance out of the first weekend consistently. You both need a little perspective.

JayHawkFanToo 1 year, 6 months ago

If you read the original story or even the snippet above, you would know that the ranking is solely based on NCCA tournament wins (point are progressively higher as the teams advance) and which team has performed more consistently. Not a bad to look at it.
KU has obviously been more consistent than any other program, as the numbers clearly show.
The only issue I have is the use of "team" instead of "program" where the first term would seem to refer to an individual team or teams (the '08 team would be in the conversation) and the second better describes the average of all teams, i.e. the program.
As far as the March tears, maybe you are still thinking about Spring football and Turner Gill; obviously your board handle is a constant reminder...just sayin'

Mike Bratisax 1 year, 6 months ago

Expectations. We go into every season thinking we have a real shot of winning it all and in reality we do have a shot almost every season. For VCU or Wichita State, making the final four exceeds all expectations and not making it to the final game still leaves all their fans happy over such a great season.

ahpersecoachingexperience 1 year, 6 months ago

After the Michigan game I think EJ has more of a future with his teams sponsor than he does with the NBA.

Phil Leister 1 year, 6 months ago

Or maybe has a future as an anonymous POS in front of a computer screen. Maybe you can give him some pointers?

Eric TheCapn 1 year, 6 months ago

The Rock Chalkeroos have been quite successful, but three teams have won two titles thus far this century. Not Kansas. 2014!

Jeremy Wilhelm 1 year, 6 months ago

Four teams actually: Duke, UNC, Florida, and UConn. But those teams have also managed to miss the tournament altogether at least once since 2000 (save for maybe Duke?). KU makes it every year and usually goes fairly deep... They are the only team except Florida to go to the championship game 3 out of 13 seasons in this century. If we only count championships, then there is no way to compare teams across a 13 year period because you don't give sufficient weight to when a team is terrible.

Eric TheCapn 1 year, 6 months ago

Oh yeah, I usually block Duke out of my mind.

RJ King 1 year, 6 months ago

additional scoring criteria:

+2 for Olivia Jane Cockburn, known professionally as Olivia Wilde in the stands

-2 for NIT appearances and

-10 for losses to Bobbie Morris

Mike Bratisax 1 year, 6 months ago

Cockburn? No wonder she changed her last name.

I wonder how may times was she told by some guy she made his ****burn?

Mike Bratisax 1 year, 6 months ago

Yeah..pretty sad. I was hoping someone would suggest removal.

Matt1958 1 year, 6 months ago

I have no doubt that there are NBA teams that Releford cold play for and be a solid contributor.

Pam Goad 1 year, 6 months ago

Releford is head and shoulders better than EJ. Travis should have had the ball in his hands on that last play in the Michigan game. He is rock solid steady. A leader. He finishes and makes good decisions. I will never understand the decision Coach Self made to put the ball in EJ's hands in such a critical situation after he had demonstrated time after time that he couldn't handle it. Sorry - I guess I'll be bitter about this one for a long, long time.

BTRHawk 1 year, 6 months ago

Dave Telep's twitter exploding with praise for Joel Embiid, has looked great at Jordan practices and was added to the Summit team. He has evidently improved faster then most thought. Something to get real excited about.

jhox 1 year, 6 months ago

I've been excited about him since the day he signed. i would vote him most likely to be our next first team All American, unless Wiggins signs with us. I'm assuming Seldon is a one and done and unlikely to be be first team AA as a freshman. Perry could jump in there and surprise me, I know he's going to put up big numbers. But Embiid is likely to be around at least 3 years and, with his natural abilities, and our coaches' ability to develop big men, the sky is the limit for him. They say he can be shown a move once and mimic it perfectly.

If you watch him now, it is amazing how much he's learned in just a couple of years of playing ball. For a big he has really soft hands. I don't expect great things his first year, but by late year two or year three, he will likely be the man.

Jeff Kilgore 1 year, 6 months ago

I've been SCREAMING this for a year and have been largely ignored. Athletic ability is about 90% of what constitutes the modern athlete. And Embiid has it in every way you can count. Of course he isn't strong, he's nearly seven feet tall! I don't think that UK's Anthony Davis would win any weightlifting competitions, but he absolutely insured their win over us in 2012. When we lost Davis, we lost in recruiting wars, we lost the NCAA championship. I'm not saying that Embiid has the same skill set, but he just might, and with Self coaching him, watch out.

By the way, all of you critical of Self need a couch, someone who will listen to you and say, "I see, I see."

BTRHawk 1 year, 6 months ago

From the comments I think he is just in a better position to benefit KU next year, which is encouraging. Somebody would have to be foolish not to recognize his long term potential. By the video I've seen from the practices it appears he has already put on more weight, still skinny but it will be fun to see what Hudy can do.

Jack Wilson 1 year, 6 months ago

jkilgore .. I would argue that "skill" is the main factor with D-1 college basketball players. If you are there, you generally have the athleticism. Surely, as you say, that difference is a big deal.

But I've been on the "skill" bandwagon. I see what you see in Embiid. A kid that is athletic, but who also is very skilled. Watching him dribble, drop step, pivot, shoot, use the left hand, etc., he looks very natural and skilled.

This guy could be the difference between a down year and a top 10 team. I'm incredibly optimistic on Embiid.

Mike Bratisax 1 year, 6 months ago

I would go by athleticism. Joel may be skilled for someone with so little playing time but compared to some of the 'elite' recruits who have been playing at the best programs and basketball camps since 3rd grade, he is still raw in comparison. Nike has camps for kids as young as 10.

I think athleticism can make-up for his lack of skills, I don't think it works the other way as much. Obviously, both are important but which is harder to achieve? Hard work will improve skills much more than it will make someone an NCAA athlete.

Joseph Bullock 1 year, 6 months ago

I really like what you have to say jkilgore. But Anthony Davis had a skill set like very few, as he was a big guard, who grew about 8 inches, I think in his last year or two in high school, to College. As far as Embiid being strong, I do think he needs to add more muscle, but in watching him match agains Julius Randle, Embiid is a lot stronger than I thought he was. He did not get pushed around, and he did not back down at all. In fact, Randle made a really dirty play (which the announcers totally ignored mentioning, probably due to what game it was-still no excuse though), when he drove in and gave Embiid a knee to the stomach, then threw his other leg into him! What a cheap and dirty player Randle showed he is. Randle was posse because, at the first of the game, Embiid blocked his dunk, and the announces raved about that, and said that is the first time in Randles career that has happened to him. But even after the cheap shot, Embiid never backed down, and in fact, blocked another of Randle shots! Embiid will have to improve his skill set on offense, but he is not bad at all, for a guy who has only been playing basketball for 3 or 4 years. And for those who are so critical of Coach Self, yes, he has made some mistakes over the years, but there is no coach in the game who hasn't lost games due to coaching mistakes. Yes, we should have beat Michigan, and if he would have take E.J. out, or put Tharpe in sooner, as the primary ball handler, we would have won that game. But the players also made some mistakes, like not getting a tie up on the loose ball on the floor, and not going for offensive rebounds (including Withey and Young), when we needed just one, at the end of the game. But over all, I would take coach Self, over any coach in the Country, although I do agree with him often having too quick a hook on younger players, when they make mistakes, but it is usually point guards, who have to been mentally tough, and the ones who survive those challenges, get so much stronger, and end up being some of the best in the Country.

Phil Leister 1 year, 6 months ago

It's ridiculous how much schools inflate guys' heights on the roster. Releford is barely above 6'4" yet is listed at 6'6". Didn't Cole measure pretty small a few years ago? And I think EJ "grew" two inches between freshman and sophomore years. Basketball shoes are gonna have 3 inch soles before too long.

jhox 1 year, 6 months ago

Every school does it. If your school doesn't, the scouts will just assume the guy who is a legit 6'4" is probably 6'2".

jhox 1 year, 6 months ago

I've stood by him as well. I'd guess he's a legit 6' but he sure doesn't look the part of elite athlete. He definitely plays that way on offense though. My only question is how long it will take him to be a decent college defender. I don't see height as a big issue for him though. He has the skills to offset any height disadvantage.

Mike Bratisax 1 year, 6 months ago

Frank Mason is listed at 5'11 by Rivals. I hope he does have a late growth spurt especially if in reality he is only 5'9.

Phil Leister 1 year, 6 months ago

If a guy is truly 5'11", then there's no doubt he'd be listed at 6'. So Mason is at best 5'10". Same goes for guys listed at 6'11".

doolindalton 1 year, 6 months ago

Hey Elijah,

If your team is down by two points and there is less than 10 seconds left, and you have the chance to tie the game with a layup,,go ahead and take the layup. Some scout will be impressed with your basketball smarts, and Europe is not a bad place to make a living, ,

Martin Rosenblum 1 year, 6 months ago

Gee Doolindalton, what an obscure scenario! Do you suggest that a play such as that could actually happen in which the layup would not be attempted?

Ashwin Rao 1 year, 6 months ago

I was surprised by that layup too. We were lucky that he was not called for the charge. That was not a very basketball savvy decision.

doolindalton 1 year, 6 months ago

Nah! Just kiddin'. No one would be foolish enough to not take a tie and try a ill-fated pass out to the perimeter for three point shot out of the player's range that was the final stab in the back to KU's chances to win another national championship. Absolutely nobody would be that foolish. Nope not no one, nohow.

jayhawkintexas 1 year, 6 months ago

I don't see the NBA being in EJ's or Travis's futures. Their shooting isn't that great and EJ is turnover prone. Maybe a team in Europe but that may even be stretching it. Even so, they are both great guys and I wish them all the best.

thmdmph 1 year, 6 months ago

How can you say Releford's shot isn't that great. He's the most consistent guy for us this past year and he posts one of the the highest percentages for the team. Sure, he doesn't have Ben's strokes, but who does, other than Ray Allen.

DCLawHawk 1 year, 6 months ago

Travis led the country in efg% most of the season. If you are going to criticize our players, at least check your facts first.

ollerfarm 1 year, 6 months ago

With 30 seconds to go in the Memphis game, I wanted to fire Bill Self. At half time, KU ahead and the Memphis bigs in foul trouble, KU has this game by 20 points. KU has 5 bigs and all they have to do is pound it inside and dominate, foul out Memphis and cruise. That didn't play at all and only a miricle finish and M not hitting free throws let KU win in OT. Against Mich Johnson has to come out late, but no. Self has to call a timeout before the 10 second call, but no, KU has to foul to prevent the tying three shot, but no. Those are good sound calls that Bill Self missed. I think he is a great coach, but...........

REHawk 1 year, 6 months ago

Bill might remain opposed to watching film of that entire Michigan game; but I think he might benefit from reviewing the last 8 minutes. If we return to that big Cowboy Dome next season, maybe he could slip into some thermals at halftime to ward off the lategame chills. (I still would not trade him, in any situation, for another Division 1 coach. He is still climbing the curve.)

Mike Bratisax 1 year, 6 months ago

Although I think Coach Self could have made a few different decisions, there is no way he could have predicted that his senior leader on the court would have his worst few minutes of his career at the most inopportune moment.

rockchalkchalkin23 1 year, 6 months ago

An intentional low blow 2 minutes in and an incompetent 10 sec violation with 2 to go says otherwise.

Ron Franklin 1 year, 6 months ago

I'll be praying for both of you guys to achieve your dreams!

You both have given me a lot of good memories and enjoyable times.

Kye Clark 1 year, 6 months ago

Off topic but there was an interesting article on by Eamonn Brennan about over-signing and how "unsavory" it is to pull scholarships. It's often been a topic of conversation here so thought I'd throw it out there for a read:

http://espn.go.com/blog/collegebasketballnation/post/_/id/83643/since-when-is-oversigning-ok

Jack Wilson 1 year, 6 months ago

Seems to me that when you have these guys going pro, you can really get left at the alter if you don't over-recruit to a degree.

Self technically over-recruited. He had 5 commits knowing he could pull Wesley's (Doyle). Then Peters left and we had 5 "open." But the Wesley thing is unique.

But what does Self do say in two seasons? Say Selden is a sophomore, Ellis has improved (junior), and Embiid (sophomore) -- all possibly could go pro. We have one sure scholarship available -- Tharpe's.

What does Self do for 2015? Sign one? It's a problem if you want to keep you program infused with top talent.

The most unsavory part in my book is bringing in guys like Merv Lindsay or Milton Doyle -- solely for program depth and protection -- guys who have been presumably sold on their opportunity to play or compete at a glamor program. And then they predictably leave because that "sale" -- while technically true -- has no real chance of materializing. Again, brought in solely for program depth and protection -- just like Traylor and Anderson in 2011.

It was easy to see that it was Doyle vs. Adams .. same type of player. Doyle pulled a "no mas." Then, it migrated to a Adams vs. Tharpe. Tharpe was on the ropes, but stayed alive, and won by decision. Adams is gone. If Adams had capitalized at the right time, Tharpe likely would be leaving. It is what it is. Competition within the 13 scholarships.

Traylor (2011 class) and Lucas-Peters (2012) -- seriously, I expected only one of these guys to survive as 4 year players here. Posted about that quite a bit. I still see it that way if we actually get big-time post players. Their redshirt years diminish that a bit, but they can always transfer after graduating, too.

We have Ellis and Embiid for 2014. Let's say we land the big time, top 20 post player for 2014 we hope we do. That means either Lucas or Traylor wouldn't even play, and the other might get the minutes Traylor did this season. That can inspire a transfer, particularly when one looks at future recruiting.

But we want at winner. Getting there many times isn't pretty.

Jack Wilson 1 year, 6 months ago

JD .. I just think we've got the bar set too low a bit here. Look back over Self's tenure. Think about the "serviceable" big men? Christian Moody maybe? KY this season? Literally, our post has been littered with pro level players.

I do expect big guys at KU to be as skilled as Simien, Wright, Kaun, Jackson, Arthur, Marcus, Markieff, Aldrich, TRob, and Withey. Those guys of course need development .. but ceilings are high.

I guess I want our role players to be the highly skilled freshman that is a year away from starting, or the junior or senior that got beat out by the freshman or sophomore stud. Not Jamari Traylor.

Hawk8086 1 year, 6 months ago

HEM,

Good points. However, I think that Traylor has enough athletic ability and can contribute enough to be an effective 4 man off the bench. As you stated, that can all depend on whom we bring in, who leaves early, etc.

Kye Clark 1 year, 6 months ago

HEM - my problem has always been (as you stated) with the Merv Lindsey/Milton Doyle types (and possibly Frank Mason?). The players that are added solely for depth. For emergencies. And then shown the door.

I've posted before that my main issue with this is that the player has to sit out a year. Coaches can leave and go to another school without having to sit out, why should the players be punished?

I can understand that you don't want massive roster reshuffling. That it wouldn't be ideal for a kid to have a bad week, get ticked off at the coach, and then decide to leave knowing he could offer his services to just anyone the following year. I also see the danger in dirty programs luring away players if they knew they were basically free agents to come and go as they please. That's why I've said I'm in favor of a scenario where if the kid leaves of his own accord, he sits out a year. If he leaves because the coach pulls the scholarship just because he needs that scholarship for someone better, then the kid doesn't have to sit out a year. Under this scenario, the coaches are now accountable and have to admit the pulling of the scholarship, rather than this lip service we get about "mutually agreed that it would be in so-and-so's best interest..." that we see so often.

ohmixmaster 1 year, 6 months ago

My only problem with it is that the player loses a year of eligibility even after he's "rode the pine" for the previous year. So, these "depth/protection" players essentially only get to play 2 years of Basketball instead of 4.

Jack Wilson 1 year, 6 months ago

On the height thing, I would think they would list the heights wearing shoes. So an extra inch plus. It's all relative. That's the important thing.

On our current group, go to the photo gallery for this season. There is a picture that shows some of the players from the back (link below).

At first I was like, man, Wesley's the tallest one. Until I saw he's standing on his tip toes.

I think the main thing that stood out to me was how short Ellis and Traylor appear. Traylor is barely taller than Andrew White. You can see Zach Peters (minus the hair) is the same height as Landen Lucas, though Lucas is up on his tip-toes a little, too. Lucas is no 6'10". Try 6'8". Traylor is barely 6'6" would be my bet. Ellis looks the same as Traylor.

Again, it's all relative.

Jack Jones 1 year, 6 months ago

Is this a serious comment? ~ You surely don't believe that listing a player's height has any impact on the outcome of a game. I seriously doubt that any opponent "gets a visual shock as they square off for the opening tip!" Our "kids" get everyone's attention and in most games, get their best shot ~ simply because we are Kansas University.

JayHawkFanToo 1 year, 6 months ago

Most Division 1 programs have complete scout reports with all the information they need including actual height. Also, most of the kids in major programs know each other from AAU and other summer programs and know exactly how tall/short other players are. Apparently the only one surprised by these numbers would be you.

DCLawHawk 1 year, 6 months ago

Did they have Withey seated in front so the other guys wouldn't look short?

REHawk 1 year, 6 months ago

Another Off Topic: Twice I have watched this year's national high school 3 pt. contest which included 8 players, two of whom are Jayhawk recruits. I am wondering if anyone, ever, has shot more successfully than Conner Frankamp in such competition. He was on target, deadeye, in both the preliminary and final rounds...from all five stations beyond the arc. Frankamp, Greene, White and Selden should constitute the best 3 pt. machinery in all of college basketball next season. And we know what Tharpe can do when his outside touch is hot. Some night when any two of these players light it up repetitively from outside, Jayhawk fans are in for a real circus. Until Embiid and Lucas make strides and adjust, outside shooting will probably be the name of the game next season...with Ellis/Traylor and one of the bigs clawing for putback rebounds. (Not to overlook Selden's slashing potential....)

Jeff Kilgore 1 year, 6 months ago

Embiid, adjust to what? He's an MJ Brands player!

REHawk 1 year, 6 months ago

Until Embiid adjusts to a soft touch and reliable freethrow %. After watching the Jordan/Brands game, I think there is no doubt that his D will help us next year.

Mike Bratisax 1 year, 6 months ago

Absolutely..can you imagine the firepower KU will possess even after making a substitution? Have we ever had so many 3pt threats on one team before?

JBsJAYHAWKS 1 year, 6 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

Jason Keller 1 year, 6 months ago

Is the NBA invitational on tv? I want to see Elijah and Trav play again. The website says it starts at 8 but doesn't say if it is on tv? Does anyone know?

theend 1 year, 6 months ago

Bunch of nonsensical gibberish. But then again.....look who is posting it.

joeloveshawks 1 year, 6 months ago

I can't believe all of the comments trashing Self. He is one of the best coaches in the game. Period. Some of the "big game" we have lost come down to players not playing well or other teams getting hot. Sure, Bill probably looks back on certain games and says "I should have done this or that" but we are incredibly spoiled as KU fans to have Bill. I live in Chicago and most of my friends are Big 10 alums and cheer for MSU, OSU, Michigan, etc. All of them are jealous that we have Self and our tradition of winning. Not one KU fan should be unhappy with having Bill as our coach...hopefully for another decade. If his next one can be the same as this one he will have 600 wins, 4 Final 4's and 2 titles. I think we would all take that.

Phil Leister 1 year, 6 months ago

Many of our fans (like the commenters above) are like spoiled, filthy rich kids. KU has been a 1 seed five of the past seven years. Missing the NCAA tournament isn't even a scenario for us. We lose perspective because of how great we consistently are. Every single year, EVERY YEAR, we're a logical pick to win the championship. And saying that isn't wearing KU blinders. How many programs can say that? Unfortunately, that means that anything short of a championship is a disappointment, and our spoiled fans think Self is a choker. Playing as the frontrunner year in and year out leaves no margin for error.

I just don't get why the hell KU fans can't see this. We have more tourney victories in the tournament than ANYONE this century, and we've won 9 freak in straight Big 12 championships. Are you kidding me? Those results are unreal! Calipari can't even make the tourney this year. Donavan and Florida win 2 in a row then fade into relative obscurity. I'll take our consistent greatness over those two scenarios.

I'm not saying we should be complacent. I want championships just like everyone else. But it's a damn privilege to be unsatisfied with 'only' 1 national championship, 9 straight Big 12's, and a 1 seed nearly every year. Perspective, people.

Anyone who calls Self a choker...I'd be really curious to see who you'd rather have as our coach. If your answer is "no one", then shut up.

Rock Chalk.

Jack Wilson 1 year, 6 months ago

Perhaps there is a middle ground here.

I wouldn't trade coach Self for any other coach. That's a given.

But I would like to see evidence that coach Self will adapt, change, and seek to improve his "game" just as the players do. We saw that in 2011-12. His best coaching job ever. But this season? Not so much. We also see evidence that he has blinders on to what he does. Your "complacent" comment is a good one .. I don't think anyone is.

I do think, however, that coach Self believes in his way with blinders on most of the time. He is many times unwilling to try different approaches. He banishes freshmen and others to the bench .. players other schools would develop by game experience (Michigan is a good example). We saw other schools bring shooters off the bench that made differences.

Great coaches are arrogant that way. It's what makes them great. But that arrogance also can stand in the way of flexibility that might well serve the bigger purpose of winning.

I would trade every one of the 9 Big 12 titles for one more national title. Weird? I'd trade all 9 for a win of Kentucky in 2011-12. I would have taken a first round loss to Robert Morris in the NIT for that title. Easy. Others, like you, are more flexible in their view of success. I wish my mind was wired that way. Don't get me wrong. I'm not complaining. I just think we can have our cake and eat it too. It's being greedy. I also recognize your point .. we are a bit spoiled by the conference dominance. It is now expected, not appreciated.

If coach Self gets the credit for what is successful, he bears the burden of the failures. My guess is we get another NC in the next five years. When he gets it, it changes everything .. fairly or unfairly. This season's tourney loss was expected to me. UNI and VCU were not. But I think the core reasons why we lost this season, is why we lost to UNI and VCU.

I think it is fair to ask coach Self to analyze the tourney failures. Figure out "why." And take proactive steps to avoid that same fate in the future.

Your statement to "shut up" if there's no one else you'd rather have as a coach is really short-sighted. It ignores the reasonable request to improve.

Kye Clark 1 year, 6 months ago

Couldn't agree more with this.

There's basically three types of fans:

1 - the Self haters. KULA really seems to be in this group. They give Self zero credit for anything, but 100% of the blame. Probably think we won the title in '08 in spite of him, not because of him. This is a fairly small minority, probably less than 5% of genuine KU fans.

2 - The Self worshipers. Those that think he can do no wrong. Don't ever question his judgment or decisions. Are quick to throw out the "you don't know more than coach Self!" line in any debate.

And 3 - the middle ground. Those fans that truly appreciate coach Self, think very highly of him, yet aren't blind to see flaws and areas of improvement.

I'd say once you take out the Self haters, the remaining ratio of KU fans are probably equally comprised of worshipers and middle grounders (maybe even slightly skewed to the worshipers side).

Phil Leister 1 year, 6 months ago

And your comment saying it's fair to ask coach Self to analyze the tourney failures and figure out "why" and take proactive steps is a bit arrogant. Do you think you're more upset at this year's loss than Self is? Do you not think Bill analyzes things point by point? If you honestly think he's too stubborn to learn from things, then that's your opinion. And don't bring up that he said he wouldn't watch the Michigan game on tape. I guarantee he remembers every point from that game, and he probably wishes he could do an few things differently.

It seems like a lot of people think they care more about this stuff than Bill does. Come on, this is literally his livelihood. He is paid to eat, sleep, and coach basketball. A reasonable request to improve? Give me a break. He cares more about KU basketball than you and me combined, I'm pretty sure he's doing everything he can do to improve. Sometimes, a guy named Burke hits a deeeeeeeep three and we lose a game. If that shot doesn't go down, we aren't having this conversation.

Kye Clark 1 year, 6 months ago

I'm sure somewhere there is a Memphis fan saying "sometimes, a guy named Chalmers hits a deeeeeeeep three and we lose a game. If that shot doesn't go down, we aren't having this conversation."

Jack Wilson 1 year, 6 months ago

HawkOverseas: You follow Self blindly and whatever he does must be ok. Next time you see him, go kiss his ring. I won't.

In the meantime, I think you're completely missing my point. Actually, you didn't address my point. The arrogance of leadership. It isn't just coaches. Do you disagree with the premise? If not, why not? And if leaders can succumb to that arrogance, why is Self immune?

I don't think he's too stubborn to learn. I think that 99% of his thought process is that it's the players' fault .. failure to execute as he always says .. not his fault at all.

Tell what significant changes or adjustments that you've seen in his offense or defense in his tenure. I'm open to changing my view here.

jaybate 1 year, 6 months ago

Part 1

First, board rats calling Bill Self anything but one of the five best coaches in basketball are obviously brain damaged beyond help.

Second, board rats, like KULA, calling Self a choker, are just betraying that their knowledge of basketball coaching would fit comfortably on a single electron shell of an atom of hydrogen. Self coaches the Madness to try to win it all every time. To do that, he gambles on under amping and he gambles on holding back wrinkles for second games of two game sets, and other times gambles on over amping and holding back no wrinkles to get through the first game, and hopes his team can limp through the second game. Sometimes he even holds everything back for both games in the early rounds, even the 16/8 round if he thinks he can get away with it. When a coach does it this way, he gets upset some times, but on average he tends to go farther than other coaches, and once in awhile he goes all the way. Many coaches are copying Self's approach. Certainly John Thompson 2.0 did this season and he ran into his equivalent of Bucknell and Bradley. But it works more often than not and it takes you farther more often than not, as Self's NCAA record proves.

Remember: Self's average ranking of his recruiting classes at KU probably remains significantly below Coach K, Calipari, Boeheim, Roy, Izzo, Crean and Donovan. All the top coaches know that Self is doing the incredible job he has been doing with less talent than the rest of them. They all know it is harder to recruit honestly to Kansas than it is to their schools. They all know that Self has won 30 games the last two seasons with smoke and mirrors, when it comes to depth. They all know Self's players don't do as well as their players do in the pros, because they know their players were more talented than Self's players. They look at Self and say, "We've got to learn to do what he is doing." Jim Calhoun's last ring team at UConn was a flat out forgery of Self's basketball coaching approach and his KU sets. The only guy that isn't copying Self is Calipari, and after Cal's visit to the NIT, Cal is likely to begin running more of Self's schemes and he's apt to start recruiting more glue guys. Roy is moving more and more toward Self's style of play. The college game is coming to Bill Self the same way it came to Coach K. The guy is too good and too consistent not to emulate his formulas.

bennybob 1 year, 6 months ago

Actually, even with the slump the past couple years, Selfs average recruiting class is higher than Boeheim, Izzo, Crean and Donovan.

  1. Calipari
  2. Roy
  3. Self
  4. K

Rankings calculated by averaging rivals recruiting class rankings of last 10 years, applying 26 to any class not ranked in the top 25

bennybob 1 year, 6 months ago

yeah shorter time frame puts more weight on Sean miller, but i dont buy it. Miller and Crean are both experiencing that "new coach bump" in recruiting that happens at big time programs when a new coach takes the reigns. These coaches can come in and sell the program along with a "we're starting from scratch and your my guy" line to recruits.

It happens to every one, even Self. see the '05 and '06 classes

Mike Bratisax 1 year, 6 months ago

No doubt..but I thought it basically confirmed your analysis.

jaybate 1 year, 6 months ago

Part 2

Now to whether Self needs to watch the end of the Michigan game.

Absolutely Self needs to watch the last ten minutes.

But great performers in any profession understand prioritizing what needs to be done when.

Right now, all that matters, is that Self has to sign 2 to 5 more players at a time when almost none are available.

Self is swinging for the fences, as usual, while also beating the bushes. Great performers in all professions understand that only simpletons think God is in the details, or God is in the grand strategy, or god is in the strategy, or god is in the tactics. GOD IS EVERYWHERE ALL THE !@#$%^ING TIME. No activity is too great, or too small, to attend to, if it contributes to winning.

What did Self say about reaching 50 as a coach this season? He said had learned not to worry about things that did not contribute to winning. Implied was that he has a greater grasp of what triggers winning, and what does not. This sort of knowledge is not handed out by great coaches to young coaches, or peers. It is gained the hard way. Year by year. Self knows it now. And he isn't sharing it. He will share that you have to know what is important. He will share that not everything is important. But he won't tell you which is which. And he won't tell his assistants either. This knowledge is finally the only thing that distinguishes Bill Self at 50 from Bill Self at 40, or any other coach that has not figured it out yet, regardless of age. And most never figure it out.

Self also has to lead his assistants and his players right now. He has to model thinking next and work ethic and pushing on when everyone else has a hole in their heart the size of sunken battle ship. Its is ordinary to lick wounds and wallow in defeat. It is the extraordinary man that moves through disaster relentlessly looking for the way to turn it to his advantage.

The greatest edge to be gained over competitors in NCAA Divsion 1 basketball comes right after the Madness. Every coach and team has lost but one. Every coach and team but one is feeling bad and licking wounds from losing. The coach that can floor the recruiting accelerator pedal at that moment might land a great one like Wiggins, or a sleeper like Kevin Young. A coach that can turn on the after burners the moment the buzzer sounds on the loss tells his returning players he is invincible, indefatigable. It tells them he eats, sleeps and drinks NEXT. It tells opposing coaches I can take anything and come back. Can you?

jaybate 1 year, 6 months ago

slayr,

I've thought a lot about this NBA foul issue you raised a few days ago.

The short answer is yes he probably will. Self has never resisted learning a lesson once clubbed with it.

But I still think analysis has missed the greatest error.

KU did not really play the clock with the ten point lead.

Al Maquire's great Marquette teams made me a believer in playing the clock exclusively with a lead.

You don't need to make plays with a ten point lead.

You need to delay and shoot free throws.

Again and again as I looked at Jesse Newell's analysis I saw KU trying to make plays on offense and defense down the stretch.

I suspected the game was lost the moment Ben Mac made his baseline drive. He was trying to make a play. Almost certainly, if Ben had simply dribbled around outside and even let the shot clock run out without taking a shot KU would have won the game as the game played out.

Self has a mantra. Big players make big plays. What he has conditioned his players into believing is that the BIG PLAY is always against another player.

WRONG.

And Al Maguire is up in heaven telling Hank Raymonds and Majerus, "Didn't I tells everyone uh dem guyz for yearz and yearz, you playz the clock with a lead under 5 minutes. You playz the clock with the lead under 3 minutes. You playz the clock with the lead under a minute. You play the clock with a lead under 30 seconds. You never stop playin' the clock!!!!!"

Maguire would laugh at the people outthinking themselves and adding conditions to this cardinal rule of playing the clock in the shot clock era.

NO POINT, NO TWO POINTS, NO THREE POINTS, ARE WORTH MORE THAN ANOTHER SECOND.

What I'm saying here is that Self made some mistakes and every player made mistakes here and there, but contrary to popular belief, these kinds of mistakes are not unusual in wins, or losses.

jaybate 1 year, 6 months ago

So: when I look for triggers, I look for decisive and/or persistent mistakes--structural mistakes down the stretch.

IMHO, KU lost the game for three reasons:

1) it repeatedly kept trying to make plays late in shot clocks instead of shaving every last second off the clock it could (when you have the lead it is better to use up three more second of the clock than it is to make a play and the closer to the end of the game it gets, the more that this is true);

2) they goofed on the NBA foul the only time that it would have been right to have stopped the clock (which wouldn't have been necessary had they been taking every second off the clock they could at least the last 60 seconds)

3) EJ got into one of his bad stretches the last 5 minutes.

So: what does Self need to look at? To consider doing differently after this game?

I look at it this way:

Change 1: Teach your players that with the lead and 60 seconds to go eat up the clock even if it means taking no shot.

Change 2: Adopt the NBA fouling rule.

Don't Change: I still think EJ was the right guy to be in the game, but it was a close call. And not because of how EJ was playing, which was not good. It was close, because when you are trying to shave seconds, you are going to score less, and so you want your best defender in the game. You also want your longest defender in so as to make trey looks the most difficult. But at the same time, you need a good ball handler in the game to shave seconds effectively.

And here is where I differ with many about time outs when shaving seconds with a lead. I think its okay to stop a clock with timeouts even as you try to shave seconds. Why? Because it allows you to substitute situationally. So: what I would have done, while I was telling my team to shave off every second possible is this: I would have taken Time outs, were they available, and brought Naa in on offense, and EJ in on defense. I know most coaches would not go along with my approach but that is what would have worked best vs. UM and in most cases IMHO. Naa would have done a much better job of shaving seconds off the clock than EJ. The ball should never have been passed into the corner to Ben IMHO; that was the back breaker play to me from which the cascade of failures unfolded.

jaybate 1 year, 6 months ago

Part 3

Self can't have people looking at him and thinking he is depressed and sulking about the Michigan game.

What kind of a leader would he be, if he said: sorry, I've got to sit and hurt and soul search and look at video of a stinging loss, even though we need to move on and sign some players and think next and win 30 next year when no one believes we can...as they haven't believed we could the last two seasons?

Self is a force of nature. Self has greatness in him that most lack. Self did not get to where he is picking the wrong time to soul search. Self has to turn this terrible loss to his advantage, and he can't do that by rolling over and doing an Oprah interview.

Self is a man of action in an age of sensitives. It is almost impossible to believe he exists some times. He is in some ways an anachronism, like General Patton was an anachronism. He is a manly warrior in a time of bureaucrats. But the most miraculous thing of all is that he is not an unconscionable jerk, like say Bob Knight. And he is not a pencil necked little phallus like Coach K. Self is an expansive, gregarious driven animal with a good bit of charisma.

You can be damned certain that Bill Self was having his assistants poring over the last ten minutes of the Michigan game on the plane ride back to KC. He told them they were accountable. Hell, they probably knew everything inside and out by the time the wheels touched down.

And you have to study the video over and over to really know what happened.

But now Self has to stay positive, if he is to persuade players to sign with his team, and make his coaches believe in him, and make his players shrug off the devastation of a horrendously improbable loss.

The future is always born the second after catastrophic defeat. That is when greatness holds greatest match-up advantage. This was what Chester Nimitz understood. This was what Eisenhower, Bradley and Patton understood in the European theater. This was what MacArthur and Vandegrift understood in the Pacific. This was what MacArthur understood at Inchon.

The time for Self to dig in with his assistants about the Michigan loss is AFTER the late signing period...after he has signed what next year's team needs NOW. Until then, Self's assistants are supposed to come up with what went wrong and why, and a set of options for what to do differently next time. He'll probably look at it the week before he goes on vacation, or the week after he gets back from vacation, after the end of the late signing period. Self is a basketball genius. He is almost certainly a quick study.

This loss isn't going anywhere. It doesn't matter when you look at it, so long as you look at it with enough time before next season and reach a consensus with your staff about what should have been done differently. Losses never go away.

jaybate 1 year, 6 months ago

Part 4

I look at Self is this way: considering coaches careers before their 50th year, outside of maybe Donovan, because Donovan nailed two titles in a row, and Bob Knight did, too, and Coach K did, too, Self is probably the best. But none of those guys won 9 straight conference titles, or probably equalled Self's incredible winning percentage before 50, and got a ring. IMHO, Self has had probably one of the top three, or at worst, top five greatest pre-50 year old coaching careers in the modern history of the game i.e., since 1980, and probably since 1960.

Most coaches historically have not mastered the game and acheived their greatest cummulative match up advantage over opposing coaches until the decade of their 50s. This was the first year of Self's 50s. He won 30 + games, a conference title, and lost at the Sweet 16 in a freak loss, a .3% probability loss.

Anyone that understands strategy and probability knows that you NEVER let yourself be determined by astronomically improbable outcomes...EVER!!!!

If one is struck by lightening in an improbable way and survives, you don't decide to change your entire way of living to prevent the fantastically improbable from happening again. You go on living. You go on trying to get better. Maybe you don't go out in a lightening storm sometimes, or maybe you reason that you do go out in a lightening storm because the chances just went from improbable to approaching one over infinity.

So: it will be the next ten years of Self's career that will determine his career ranking. He has layed one of the highest possible foundations up to 50. Bill Self, so long as he does not listen to yahoos on here, and continues to believe in his principles and continually search for new talent and new tactics fitting talent and situations, is very likely to win one to three rings the next ten years. He has to win 3 more rings to be considered one of the all time greats. He has to win 9 more to be tied with the greatest of the all time. He has to win ten to be the greatest.

Go, Bill, go!!!!!!!!!!!

Jack Jones 1 year, 6 months ago

Sorry, but my attention span gave out ~ but not before I concluded that you are spot on with your analysis of Coach Self ~ and anyone who seriously thinks that he "needs to watch the Michigan game film" for any reason, doesn't have a clue about the dynamics of coaching. There isn't anyone who has those last four minutes "burned into his mind" more than him.

Mike Bratisax 1 year, 6 months ago

It did take over 60 seconds to read so...

Mike Bratisax 1 year, 6 months ago

lmao..I suggested it. It was a sad attempt at HS humor. I think teaching middle school has damaged my brain : )

bennybob 1 year, 6 months ago

To support your claims jaybate:

If coach K were to win at his current winning percentage until retirement, and Self were to win at his current winning percentage until the same age that coach K ultimately retires at, the math works out that Self will finish with more all time wins

fansincewilt 1 year, 6 months ago

I think this makes Self the #1 coach of the 21st century. Congratulations!

oldalum 1 year, 6 months ago

I think he's in California accepting the Wooden Coaching Award.

jaybate 1 year, 6 months ago

The only thing Self has to do is deal effectively with mid life without having to change careers, and he is perfectly positioned to make the final ascent on the Everest of coaching.

It never bothers me that ordinary persons cannot figure out how great persons do what they do.

What grinds me is ordinary persons not only not being able to recognize greatness, but being smug about it.

It is disgraceful.

bennybob 1 year, 6 months ago

i detect a hint of objectivism in this post.

Ms. Rand would be proud!

Mike Bratisax 1 year, 6 months ago

I think you have to factor in expectations. How long has coach K been at Duke? After they lost in this years NCAA, I found many complaints by Duke's fans..past his prime, losing out on key recruits, time to start thinking about a change but outside of Duke, I think most fans still have him one the best coaches in college basketball.

Most people don't realize how hard it is to win a NCAA Championship. Missouri has never been to a Final Four ever and 'Sit Down' Norm was a quality coach. So much has to go right and so little (Tyrus Edny) can end the season.

"What grinds me is ordinary persons not only not being able to recognize greatness, but being smug about it. It is disgraceful."

100% on target.

JayHawkFanToo 1 year, 6 months ago

If anyone is interested the Portsmouth Invitational will be ta 7:00 PM Saturday and will be streamed here:
http://ulive.cbssports.com/

bennybob 1 year, 6 months ago

Chance to see Imbiid tonight. i'm excited.

Focus on the potential, not the production. expect him to be raw

Jeff Kilgore 1 year, 6 months ago

If he's a top 22 player, he's not raw. What on earth is making fans think this? Michael Jordan is not putting players on the floor that will embarrass him. He's trying to sell new shoes to kids from coast to coast, and his group selects players who will make him look good.

I expect Embiid, with an E, to look fantastic. I expect him to start next year.

bennybob 1 year, 6 months ago

Your right, I just watched him throw a Julius Randle dunk attempt right back into his face.

I havent seen a legit seven footer that can move like him since dwight howard. he's only been playing basketball for 3 years? scary good!

Jeff Kilgore 1 year, 6 months ago

OK! FIRST FOUR MINUTES OF EMBIID'S PLAY: TWO BLOCKS, A MONSTER BLOCK ON JULIUS RANDLE, TWO REBOUNDS, AND THE FIRST TWO POINTS ON THE WEST SQUAD. I'M NOT SEEING "RAW."

HE MISSED A FIFTEEN FOOTER, BUT HE TOOK IT AND DIDN'T MISS IT BY MUCH.

Priest Fontaine 1 year, 6 months ago

At the Jordan brand classic. Got a Danny manning jersey that I'm waving around.

Jeff Kilgore 1 year, 6 months ago

The announcers are doing a horrible job announcing the game. I don't know who is who. What number is Selden. Embiid is impossible to miss.

LLH 1 year, 6 months ago

Two things: 1) You play basketball IN your shoes. I was 6'1 during most of my playing days and ALWAYS listed as 6'3, and no, I wasn't good enough to play at KU, ha ha, ALL schools do this, even high schools. I have since grown old, but actually grew an inch and a half after my high school playing days, now I'm 6'2 1/2 but don't play ball, so I tell people I'm 6'2 1/2. You play in your shoes fellas, enough of the pointless back and forth about the heights of players. If they are listed at 6'6 then they are 6'4 with shoes off, PERIOD. 2) YES, I would have fouled Trey Burke long before he hoisted that unthinkable 3, but the problem is, say CS does that and then KU doesn't hit FT's to ice it? He winds up the topic of conversation either way. It is was it is, KU lost, and no amount of lamenting or second guessing will EVER change that. While it may be fun for some, and certainly is common fodder for article comments and message boards, it happened, move on. If you don't like Self, write him some nonfan mail and send it to the basketball office, then start watching Duke or some other program with a "PERFECT" coach. The constant public thrashing of the man just seems unfounded to me. You refer to yourself as a "fan" but it seems there are more "critics" on these posts than anything else.

Kye Clark 1 year, 6 months ago

As per my post above, this is an example of a worshiper. I had said that one of the ways to identify these types is that they often fall back on the "you don't know more than Self!" boilerplate. This poster illustrates another. The use of "fan", emphasis on the quotation marks. Indicating that anything other than unquestioning, blind loyalty and praise means you are less of a fan than he is, and should therefore leave the church of Self and go find another school to root for.

At least he cleared the shoe/height thing up. Whew...that's a load off!

REHawk 1 year, 6 months ago

Excellent posts here: jaybate, HEM, slayr, ict. I really enjoyed reading your inputs.

Sam Constance 1 year, 6 months ago

I think my least favorite part about losing in the tourney is seeing how ugly some supposed KU fans can get in turning on their own team/players/coach.

I mean, did I seriously just see two losers pat each other on the back about replacing Self with Brad Stevens?

I agree with the comments of icthawkfan316 that there tend to be three camps of KU fans. The worshipers are annoying to me because he make it hard to have a reasonable conversation about KU basketball. But at the end of the day, I appreciate where the worshipers are coming from--they love their team and want to offer unconditional support. Maybe not great for instigating critical analysis, but I'm never going to get too down on a fan for being overly-zealous in support of his team. That's the whole point of fanhood. It's the denigrators/naysayers that really tick me off. Self and KU basketball are far from perfect, but in the grand scheme of things, fans of KU basketball have enjoyed more joy and excitement than we really have a right to when you compare it to the rest of the country. We've become so accustomed to our better-than-any-other-program winning percentage since Self joined that we've gotten to a point where people think it's reasonable to DEMAND that Self should have one at least four titles by now. We win so much that winning a lot by itself is now meaningless if we can't win in a single-elimination tournament between 68 different teams, playing games of increasingly difficult opponents. The sense of entitlement about something that is, at the end of the day, a game played for entertainment, is disgusting.

I wasn't surprised by the scapegoating of EJ after the Michigan loss, but I am a little shocked at how much the conversation has turned to Self's failures. Some of which are valid points. But for me, Self's fallibility definitely exists, but it doesn't outweigh all the wonderful skills he does bring to the program. He's a great ambassador, he teaches a balanced, efficiency-modeled style of basketball, and he pulls in really good talent without succumbing to the temptation to stockpile McD's All-Americans. Don't get me wrong--I want him to go after those guys, but I don't want him doing an "at all costs" approach where our ability any given year depends on 6-7 freshman being able to find some chemistry and play together.

At the end of the day, Self is a flawed coach (most are), who is still better than anyone else we would possibly want. Brad Stevens included.

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