Monday, January 14, 2013

Ben McLemore wins Big 12 player of the week

Kansas fans reach to slap hands with Ben McLemore as he exits the floor after a 33-point performance and a game-tying three that send the game into overtime on Wednesday, Jan. 9, 2013 at Allen Fieldhouse.

Kansas fans reach to slap hands with Ben McLemore as he exits the floor after a 33-point performance and a game-tying three that send the game into overtime on Wednesday, Jan. 9, 2013 at Allen Fieldhouse.


Kansas freshman guard Ben McLemore has been selected as the Big 12 player of the week, the conference announced Monday morning.

McLemore averaged 21.5 points and 3.5 rebounds as KU won its first two games in Big 12 play with a 97-89 overtime victory over Iowa State and a 60-46 triumph at Texas Tech.

The freshman guard opened the week by scoring 33 points against ISU on 10-of-12 shooting — including 6-of-6 accuracy from 3-point range — along with 7-for-7 shooting from the free throw line. He scored 13 of KU's final 23 points in the final seven minutes, including the game-tying three-pointer with 1.3 seconds remaining to send the contest to overtime. It was the most points by a Jayhawk freshman since Danny Manning in 1985 (35 vs. Oklahoma State).

For the week, McLemore made 63.2 percent of his field goals, 60 percent of his shots beyond the arc and 86.7 percent of his free throws. He ranks second in the Big 12 in scoring with 16.4 points per contest.

Iowa State freshman forward Georges Niang, who scored 13 points at KU on Wednesday, including the team's first eight points, was chosen as the league's rookie of the week.


jakejayhawk 5 years, 5 months ago

Congrats to Ben! Let's hope there are more to come. It is a great indication that the team is successful. This is a good beginning to Championship number nine.

Reuben_J_Cogburn 5 years, 5 months ago

Good game, Wednesday, Benny.

But you got a dose of reality on Saturday. I hate to say "I told you so," but anyone who heeded by words the other day agrees.

The kid is definitely phenomenal, but he has a lot to prove before I start making prestigious NBA comparisons. Sure he can go off for 33 points at home against Iowa State, but a road game (even at Texas Tech) throws him off.

He will have a few more outstanding games this year, but just as predicted, it was senior leadership that stepped up on Saturday during a grueling, ugly road game.

Kevin Young, not Ben McLemore, was the player to watch on Saturday.

Reuben_J_Cogburn 5 years, 5 months ago

Just respectively pointing out, sir. Does he deserve the POW award? Abso-freakin-lutely.

My comments were more toward the silly Michael Jordan, Ray Allen, etc. comparisons I've been seeing on here lately.

Just offering a bit of a reality-check, but that doesn't mean he won't someday meet those comparisons.

JayHok 5 years, 5 months ago

The only comparisons to MJ I've seen is that is game is eerily similar. Also some have pointed out that the best thing MJ ever did for himself, by his own admission, was to stay in college for 3 years with a coach he trusted. Also keys to the gym to endlessly work on skills MJ wanted to master, isolated practice-time that certain NBA coaches might not have allowed in the first few years with all the structure.

Reuben_J_Cogburn 5 years, 5 months ago

MJ could drive from the perimeter and make things happen mid-range and and in the paint.

He was also ambidextreous.

Both of these McLemore is yet to prove. My fear for BMAC is he has fallen in love with the 3. So you've got one of the most athletic kids in recent KU history who is gravitating toward both extremes....three pointers and wide open dunks...and not developing the driving and mid-range game.

He will be at Kansas for a few more months. During that time he needs to work these things. I'm not a coach or a high-horse prophet, but considering he WILL NOT be here for 3 years like MJ to develop his game, he needs to develop as much as possible in the limited amount of time he has.

Having said this, I cannot reiterate enough how impressive this kid is. And yes, one of the most naturally-gifted since Paul Pierce.

Tony Bandle 5 years, 5 months ago

RJC...I think NBA comparisions for BenMac may indeed be premature, however, NBA potential is shooting through the roof.

He has been passing the ultimate test...when he is on the floor, he effects the game. Just having him out there, puts added pressure on the opponent defense, even if he is not being effective.

Frankly, I think the game Saturday was a long term benefit..Ben got to see what he needs to work on when in hostile "away" environments and his subpar play [for him] did NOT cost Kansas a victory.

Baylor will be a great barometer as to how far this KU team has come so far this season!!

Reuben_J_Cogburn 5 years, 5 months ago

Agreed....premature is the best way to describe it. And for the record, I honestly believe he is still the potential #1 overall pick in the draft this year...if not then darn close.

It just makes me nervous to hear those NBA references thrown about from KU fans. We're smarter than that; especially two games into conference play.

Baylor will be a good test as well. Great players show up against great teams.

jbal32 5 years, 5 months ago

Jason King picked up Jamari Traylor's story and wrote a great article on him.

ParisHawk 5 years, 5 months ago

Thank you so much for posting that link. Truly heart-warming story. I can't help thinking one of Coach Self's motivations is to help kids like this - a good reason not to stray to the NBA...

Steve Gantz 5 years, 5 months ago

Who's the more valuable Jayhawk, BMac or Jeff?

Reuben_J_Cogburn 5 years, 5 months ago

Jeff. Weird to say.

BMac is the X factor, but Withey changes opponents' offensive plan so much, that it's hard not to give it to him.

The question you have to ask yourself is....which one, if they're having a tough shooting night, is still impacting the game?

Hands down it's Withey. Whether he's producing offensively or not, he is still changing the tone of the game.

ParisHawk 5 years, 5 months ago

I'll answer with another question:

When does the team suffer the most, when BMac sits or when Withey sits?

When Withey sits, the defense rests...

Robert Brock 5 years, 5 months ago

I would like to see Benny the Jet take it to the rim tonight. Zone or no zone.

Joseph Bullock 5 years, 5 months ago

Ben may not be one and done like everyone thinks. if he is smart, he will stay for at least one more year, to develop his skill sets. let us remember that he is playing against College players now, not NBA players, and the travel and long schedule of the NBA is grueling. Everyone thought Brandon would leave sooner than he did, also (I thought he would stay), so we can all speculate all we want. now, if he has a monster season, going forward, and really is a prominent part of a deep K.U. run in the NCAA Tournament, then he goes, for sure. Ben has a world of potential, but he has to bring it every day, and he still has so much to learn. he also seems to be a great kid. nice and respectful, and in that, reminds me a lot of Danny, Russell, Brandon, and Tyshawn!

Reuben_J_Cogburn 5 years, 5 months ago

Wishful thinking at it's best, sir.

And don't forget Brandon Rush only stayed an extra year because he hurt his knee before the draft.

wildjayhawk 5 years, 5 months ago

Bill better fine some players who want to play rather then what we have seen the past 3 games. Looks like the starting 5 isn't interested in being on the floor.

Jeff Coffman 5 years, 5 months ago

Interesting that he could be the Best player in the Big XII, but isn't the Best Rookie in the Big XII.

Tricky how that works.

HAWKTOPIA 5 years, 5 months ago

I would think Ben would be more explosive if they picked for him low, towards baseline, when he gets the ball high outside. They always send him high into traffic away from the rim. pick for him low, and he will go to the rim more.

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