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Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Jayhawks plan payback, not backflips, at Oklahoma State

Kansas head coach Bill Self walks off the court following the Jayhawks' 85-80 loss to Oklahoma State on Saturday, Feb. 2, 2013 at Allen Fieldhouse.

Kansas head coach Bill Self walks off the court following the Jayhawks' 85-80 loss to Oklahoma State on Saturday, Feb. 2, 2013 at Allen Fieldhouse.

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— Visions of Marcus Smart’s acrobatic cartwheel and backflip on the center-court Jayhawk logo have been dancing in the heads of Kansas University’s basketball players the past few weeks, ever since OSU’s 85-80 win over KU on Feb. 2 in Allen Fieldhouse.

“If their coach allowed that, then that’s up to them. If we go and get a victory there, you won’t see us doing backflips or flips on their court. We are just going to walk out in style,” KU senior guard Travis Releford said Tuesday, before today’s much-anticipated rematch against the Cowboys.

“We’ve got a few guys who can definitely flip and do backflips. If we win, you definitely won’t see any backflips or anything like that,” Releford added.

Tip for today’s game between the No. 9-ranked Jayhawks (21-4, 9-3 Big 12) and No. 14-rated Cowboys (19-5, 9-3) is 8 p.m., in Gallagher-Iba Arena.

“From a competitive standpoint, we did find that sort of disrespectful,” said KU junior forward Justin Wesley. “At the end of the day, that was a good team. They did deserve the win. Hopefully we can keep the backflips from coming this time.”

Freshman point guard Smart couldn’t contain his glee after scoring 25 points, grabbing nine rebounds and totaling five steals in the victory on KU’s home court.

“Now they have something that’s really going to motivate them to come in here,” Smart told the Oklahoman. “But like I said, it was in the emotion of the moment, in the flow and it just happened. I can’t take it back now. As a player and competitor, if I saw that, that would definitely get me fired up.”

A replay of Smart’s backflip was shown on OSU’s pre-game video prior to last Saturday’s victory over Oklahoma in Gallagher-Iba.

“On the plane coming down here, in the locker room before the game,” OSU coach Travis Ford told the Oklahoman, referring to the number of times he figures KU coach Bill Self will show the backflip to his players as a motivational tactic.

“Once you throw the ball up, (it) doesn’t matter,” Ford added. “There were certain things that OU did down (in Norman in victory over OSU earlier this season) that we used (in rematch). But like I told our guys, once you throw that ball up, you’ve got to play.”

Self hasn’t admitted to showing any tape of Smart’s backflip, indicating clips have been available on TV and YouTube. Of course, he won’t discourage any revenge-type motive for a game that will keep the winner tied for first in the Big 12 standings with Kansas State; the loser dropping to third.

“We need a payback type attitude going down there,” Self said. “They’re good. Before the season, I said I liked their roster better than anybody in the league. That hasn’t changed.”

KU backup point guard Naadir Tharpe said a key will be containing OSU’s guards. Markel Brown exploded for 28 points with two rebounds in the first meeting. He hit seven of 10 threes.

“We’ve got to hit somebody every single time. Even the guards have to go to the glass,” Tharpe said. “It was a majority of their guards getting extra rebounds as well as their bigs. It’s something we’ve been working on at practice, hitting each other every day so we can steal that extra possession.

“Everybody has that loss on their shoulders,” he added. “We want to get it off.”

Lotta views: KU’s Harlem Shake video had over 1,600,000 views on YouTube as of Tuesday night.

“I didn’t know it’d blow up like that,” said Wesley, the organizer of the video. “I think we were all happy how it turned out. Everybody looked silly. I was more excited for Drew (Andrew White III) and Perry (Ellis). They are the quiet ones on the team. They looked like they had a lot of fun with it.”

Of Self’s role writing the words, Harlem Shake on the chalkboard to open the video, Wesley said: “We told him it was an educational video. When he showed up he said, ‘I’m not doing this.’ We said, ‘You can have a serious part but you’ve got to be in it.’ He was cool doing it.”

Self joked: “I’m sure that will get nominated for many awards on YouTube awards. I’d think I’d get best supporting actor for the huge role I played. I’m just glad I spelled the two words right.”

About OSU: Junior guard Markel Brown leads OSU in scoring at 15.8 points per game. He averages 17.3 ppg in league play. Smart leads the Big 12 with 2.9 steals per game to go with his 15.0 ppg scoring average. Sophomore Le’Bryan Nash averages 13.3 points and 4.3 rebounds. Brown had 22 points in the first half of OSU’s win over KU in Allen.

“He came off a lot of screens,” Releford said, noting, “I didn’t start off on him. I was guarding someone else. He got going early. By the time I got on him he had a rhythm and was already doing well. Hopefully we’ll come out this game and make him uncomfortable and not have him get open looks.”

The series: KU leads the overall series, 106-54. KU has won four of the past five meetings and five of seven. KU is 32-31 vs. OSU in Gallagher-Iba Arena. Since 1997, the start of the Big 12, the series is 4-4 in Stillwater meetings. Also since the inception of the Big 12, KU is 16-7 versus OSU (12-5 in regular-season play and 4-2 in the Big 12 Championship). Self is 10-8 all-time against his alma mater, including 9-5 while at KU. OSU’s Travis Ford is 2-5 versus Kansas.

Recruiting: Julius Randle, a 6-9 senior forward from Prestonwood Christian Academy in Plano, Texas, who visited KU last weekend, tells Eric Bossi of Rivals.com he will pick a school “between now and the middle of March.”

Randle, who has a final list of KU, Florida, Kentucky, N.C. State and Texas, said he had a great time on his visit to KU.

“It was my fourth time there, but I feel like I know a lot more now,” Randle told Bossi. “I really got to see everything that goes into the program. Like when they get a big-time player, everything that goes into developing that player on the court, in the weight room. It’s top notch for real.”

Randle said Self told him he fits the system.

“The spots he put them in at around 15 feet or catching in the post or isolated on the side, he thinks I can excel in all those areas,” Randle said. “He feels what I can do differently than any other player that he has had is get the ball off the glass and bring it up. If I don’t get the rebound, he feels I should be the first person up the floor and get to my sweet spot. As long as I defend and rebound, he’ll let me play with as much freedom as I want.”

Comments

Michael Luby 1 year, 1 month ago

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

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Tony Bandle 1 year, 1 month ago

Watching the MU/FL and IN/MSU game last night was frustrating in that it was killing me to have ot pull for Missouri BUT the more teams that lose in front of us [last night Mich.St and Florida] the better off for us.

Lost in all the excitement was the facf that Saturday's win was #290 for Bill Self at Kansas. Boys and girls, that's an average of 29 victories per season for TEN SEASONS!!! Also, 10 straight NCAA berths and upper half or conference crowns.

Hasn't Puke, the TarHoles, Consucky, Syra-excuse and many other schools all had at least one down season in the last 10 years??

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Rob Bedford III 1 year, 1 month ago

None of my tweets were ever directed toward KU but it seems everytime I tweet it so happens that's who I'm talking bout thats not rite#AtAll

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Adam Gerval 1 year, 1 month ago

Anrio Adams is BLOWING UP on twitter right now about how he's being overlooked, and would get more minutes anywhere else.

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justinryman 1 year, 1 month ago

KU has played in front of hostile crowds this year.

In Manhattan that crowd was into it for about the first 8 minutes then the play of KU took them right out of it.

I believe KU was playing "not to lose" ball when they went on their 3 game slide. It was starting to show for about a week week and half before that. You combine that with the start of OKst 7 game winning streak it was just a bad snowball.

KU was playing not to lose at home. Not to lose the conference title. Not to lose as compared to playing to win. The past two games they have played to win and if they play like that, they will take care of the crowd, they will take care of the athleticism that OKst possess and KU will win.

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jayhawkrider 1 year, 1 month ago

We live in Plano just down the street from Prestonwood and have followed Julius for a while through people who have played him or watched his games. My son follows him on Twitter....this guy has potential to have recruiting baggage due to his "connections" with LeBron and everyone else. Let Calipari have him. He's a one-and-done UK type.

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Sam Constance 1 year, 1 month ago

khuff88 -

You're doing it wrong.

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Tony Bandle 1 year, 1 month ago

The key to this game as with every game is Elijah. Can he break out and excell, will he have a meltdown that the team can overcome, will he have a meltdown that the team can't overcome?

Which Jayhawk team, will show up tonight.....the team that dismantled Texas or the team that dismantled itself against TCU?????

I choose to believe the former because I can't stand the thought of thinking about the latter!!!

Kansas 65 OSU 61

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VaJay 1 year, 1 month ago

I just found this quote from the Stillwater paper:

“If we can get the win, we could be in first place with Kansas State, so it’s going to be a big game,” Nash said. “I love playing Kansas, Bill Self and them. They recruited me, so I love playing against them and showing them why I chose this school over them.”

What a d**k! I'm glad we didn't get him. I hope we kick their butts tonight.

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dhinkansas 1 year, 1 month ago

Forget the backflip...the kid was excited. I hope the team can make it back safely from Stillwater tonight with this storm bearing down on the entire region.

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Ralster Jayhawk 1 year, 1 month ago

Travis "Sawed-Off" Ford. (laughter)

1

okiedave 1 year, 1 month ago

Ford is painfully aware he was not OSU's first choice to replace Sutton. There is nothing more satisfying to Ford than beating Self's Jayhawks.

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Steve Gantz 1 year, 1 month ago

It seems the writers are trying to make a mountain out of a backflip molehill. None of us here are commenting on it, so apparently it's not being taken as some affront to our hallowed tradition/arena/mystique.

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KansasComet 1 year, 1 month ago

This game will show if we are ready for the big time. I have a feeling that we are. As long as we play with intensity and stay in attack mode we are hard to guard. I have said it before, and I will say it again. When Travis Releford scores 10 or more points we are undefeated. Travis is one of the best finishers at the basket in KU History. When Travis is scoring it usually means we are getting transition buckets, and creating turnovers. We are the better team. Time to show it for forty minutes. Withey must rebound, and block or alter shots. Kevin must bring the energy. EJ must facilitate and get everyone involved, take the open jumper, shoot with confidence, because everyone will be crashing the boards. If EJ goes to the hole like he did against Texas, then we are in good shape. Tharpe needs to get in the lane and create, in addition to popping the open Jump Shot. Ben McLemore needs to score and score some more. We must contain Brown and Smart. As long as they don't go off, we should be good to go! Above anything, "Just Win"!

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Ralster Jayhawk 1 year, 1 month ago

Question: Will 6'9, 240 Julius Randle be able to contribute right-off-the-bat to the level of 6'9 240lb junior year Thomas Robinson? (That lotto pick that was seen about 8-10ft to the left of Randle at the KU/TX game...). Will Randle be able to play to the level of junior-yr 6'9, 235lb Marcus Morris? I do recall also a top10 6'6, 220lb NBA-body in Xavier Henry, who played mentally soft at first, then sandbagged against injury through March, ending with a no-show against a team named "UNI", on his way out the KU door. He was a man-child/beast 1 mos later at the NBA workouts. So how is this going to play out for the University of KS and Bill Self?

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Phoghorn 1 year, 1 month ago

My favorite basketball rivalry tonight!

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Phoghorn 1 year, 1 month ago

Hey dwnthestretchicome - the chance of KU ending up in the NIT this year is about as great as our chance of moving home games back into the basement of old Snow Hall.

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Ralster Jayhawk 1 year, 1 month ago

Maybe we can make KHUFF88 happy and tell Julius Randle to commit to Travis "SAWED-OFF" Ford and ChokieState--> Randle doesnt pick KU, and thus khuff88 can say "I told ya so."

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Terry Smith 1 year, 1 month ago

Well, after tonights whoopass beat down game that should put Ku out of the running for the conference championship. Kansas ST. now has totally control with Okahoma ST. coming in second. Then after Iowa ST. gets done with KU they will out of the picture completely, and maybe out of the NCAA tournment. TCU could also put another one on KU, which is possible, then KU will be fighting for a spot in the NIT.

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Vernon Riggs 1 year, 1 month ago

22 point Victory tonight. Kansas 74 OSU 52. Nobody at OSU will flip over those numbers.

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tis4tim 1 year, 1 month ago

A yeoman's effort on the glass and at the free throw line and we win by double digits.

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Tony Bandle 1 year, 1 month ago

T. Boone Pickens mother's maiden name was Hisnose.

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okiedave 1 year, 1 month ago

I've got tickets for the game tonight and it's snowin' like crazy down here. This game will be one of the rare sellouts at OSU cows**t arena thanks to the Jayhawks reputation. Boone Pickens did not have to purchase 4,000 thousand tickets to give away to students to try to fill the arena like he did for OSU's game with Gonzaga.

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Sally Presson 1 year, 1 month ago

Khuff88, what's with you, get up on the wrong side of the KU band wagon. Come on 88 don't be so negative, KU fans are positive and we don't need your crappy attitude. KU will win tonight, they won't let them get us the second time.

Julius, you won't reget becoming a jayhawk, you were surrounded by NBA players at the game Saturday night, so follow in their footsteps and pick KU!!! You'll be a star

Rock Chalk

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GortHawker 1 year, 1 month ago

Most important game of the year comming up tonite people, B12 Championship could be on the line, "Go Hawks" BMc goes for 30, " YA BABY "

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Konkis Dongington III 1 year, 1 month ago

Thanks for the links, BigManU. If Self needs to get his guys motivated for the game tonight, I'd post this quote from LeBryan Nash on the doors of each of their hotel rooms and in the locker room too:

"If we can get the win, we could be in first place with Kansas State, so it’s going to be a big game," Nash said. "I love playing Kansas, Bill Self and them. They recruited me, so I love playing against them and showing them why I chose this school over them."

Personally, I think we dodged a bullet with Nash anyway, since his play is so inconsistent, but man would I love to show that kid why he's not good enough for KU anyway.

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Tony Bandle 1 year, 1 month ago

Regarding Julius.

1] He now knows he can have a HUGE role in next year's line up.

2] Kansas is a lot closer to home than South Carolina, Florida or Kentucky and Austin is way too close.

3] The current KU "Dead Zone", the 10'-15' jumper would become the Julius Launching Pad.

4] Who would you rather play in front of ..Olivia Wilde or Ashley Judd?

5] His mom liked the KU students best.

6] He comes to Lawrence as a OAD, Perry Ellis redshirts next year, it's win win for all!!

7] At UK, he's one of the French Fries....at KU, he's the straw that stirs the drink.

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jaybate 1 year, 1 month ago

Warning: I am in a prediction funk. I picked KU over Tayhoss by 1.

KU by 10.

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Robert Brock 1 year, 1 month ago

KU has done everything it can to land Julius Randle; now he has to size everything up and make the best decision he can for himself. If KU gets him - great! If not - the program endures and Randle has a quick stop somewhere else on the way to The League.

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jayhawkinATL 1 year, 1 month ago

Jesus...it was JUST a back-flip!!!

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William Blake 1 year, 1 month ago

"“The spots he put them in at around 15 feet or catching in the post or isolated on the side, he thinks I can excel in all those areas,” Randle said. "

Guess he saw file footage of the hi-lo (high-low)...

After reading that last paragraph, I feel like we have a solid shot at Julius.

We've never really had a guy at his offensive level play CS's offense in the post. Julius would chew up opposition like we've never seen before!

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jaymar74 1 year, 1 month ago

One comforting thought for tonight's game is that it is Self vs Ford

2

REHawk 1 year, 1 month ago

Khuff80, they say that dingleberries roll downhill. You appear to be on a fine roll this morning.

7

IrishCharlie 1 year, 1 month ago

ha ha the KU chest thumpers can't handle a spur of the moment tremendous back flip, waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa waaaa.

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Chris Shaw 1 year, 1 month ago

Time for KU's seniors to set the tone and B-Mac to have that takeover killer instinct. It's time for B-Mac to separate himself from KU's seniors and establish himself as the "Lead Dog" on the court.

1

Jonathan Allison 1 year, 1 month ago

They got some good soundbites from Releford and Wesley for this piece. I like that Smart also indicated that he knew the flip would be used as motivation.

Interesting that they're quoting the interview on Randle that KHuff's been huffing about the past couple days, yet they leave out the now infamous parting shot.

My take: Randle saw the KU team on a weekend that everyone on the team was having fun. He witnessed the "Harlem Shake", the gameday atmosphere and the thrill of a big-time victory. My guess is that he saw the team having a ton of fun, and if he hit it off with the team and could see himself fitting in with some of the returnees next year then maybe he decides that KU is a place that he will be happy and have fun. Unfortunately his former teammate Z. Peters didn't get a fair shake to be happy and have fun, that plays against us. I think that we have as good a shot at Randle as anyone.

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Ron Franklin 1 year, 1 month ago

The key to tonights Victory is not letting off the gas once its complete. Big stretch of the season right now if we want to hang 9 straight. Cannot afford a big victory and subsequent let down.

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leonard 1 year, 1 month ago

"Nash is pretty hot his last few games." -- khuff80

Nope...he was hot in just the last game...going 9-18 with 26 pts.

The three games prior to that...averaged 10 pts. on a combined 9-27 shooting.

3

leonard 1 year, 1 month ago

If you think Brown and Smart will torch KU's backcourt for another 53 pts...if you think Brown will hit 7-10 triples...if you think Smart will collar 8 offensive rebounds...then the easy play is to put your money on OSU.

My money's on the Jayhawks.

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jaybate 1 year, 1 month ago

Oh, I get it. Self has recruited someone named Freedom to play with Big Julie. :-)

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jaybate 1 year, 1 month ago

"As long as I defend and rebound, he’ll let me play with as much freedom as I want.” --JRand

:-D

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Tophawk 1 year, 1 month ago

Good Luck Hawks in Stillwater! I've given up predicting our chances landing some of these high star recruits like Randle though..Seems everytime we think KU is about to land them they head off to Kentucky,Duke,Carolina it seems...Would love to get him though for sure...

1

phogphan2000 1 year, 1 month ago

I hope Randle is comfortable with the program now; I don't think Self is alone in anticipating how well he fits into his system. He's got an opportunity to be really special and make great strides as a basketball player at KU. I just don't see the same opportunities at any of those other schools. WCS and Wiltjer are probably back at UK along with a number of other players; Gottfried is just not a proven coach in my opinion; nobody really considers Barnes to be great at developing talent; UF also has a stacked front court with Yuguete likely to return after this injury, Walker coming in and Harris on the squad next year. He could go another way, but none makes as much sense as KU.

I think we're gonna see the most intense KU team we've seen all year in Stillwater. I would think OSU will be a slight favorite, so this is a rare opportunity for KU to pull an upset. If they don't it's not the end of the world, but probably the end of the Big12 title streak.

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madamhawk 1 year, 1 month ago

I have a feeling...

-We escape from Stillwater with a 1 point win.

-The coaching staff along with the team managers make their own Harlem Shake video and it ends up getting 2x the amount of hits.

-Julius officially becomes a Jayhawk in two weeks.

I have a feeling, that tonight's gonna be a good night!!!

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David Leathers 1 year, 1 month ago

For the first time, I feel confident about our chances at landing Randle. It seems that he and Self really hit it off over the weekend and Julius got to go home with some clarity. Here's to Randle doing what is best for him, and me hoping that it means choosing the Jayhawks.

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diegohawk 1 year, 1 month ago

OSU

I like our chances whether this a possession type of game or up tempo. But personally with the scoring funk we have been under, I would like to see the score in the mid to high 70s for us. I don't think either team gets to 85 this time around. Defensive intensity while being assignment sound, rebounds, transition scoring and some timely shot making would be on my wishlist.

Randle

Would be a great piece. He has guard skills like Perry but seems to already play like a man. Bull in a China Shop attacking of the basket. Would love to see his post toughness/attack mentality matched with Selden's perimeter version of the same. May be struggles with youth but by this time next year nobody will want to be looking at us on their schedule. Like the team for next year already but would really love to add Julius to the mix. Seems like he would be a great fit for the team.

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