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Kansas defeats Texas Tech, 79-42

  • 6 p.m., March 4, 2013
  • Allen Fieldhouse, Lawrence, KS

Monday, March 4, 2013

3 and out: Jeff Withey’s long-range shot highlight of Senior Night win

Kansas center Jeff Withey (5) and Kevin Young (40) get hugs from their teammates as they are taken out of the game against Texas Tech during the second half, Monday, March 4, 2013 at Allen Fieldhouse.

Kansas center Jeff Withey (5) and Kevin Young (40) get hugs from their teammates as they are taken out of the game against Texas Tech during the second half, Monday, March 4, 2013 at Allen Fieldhouse.

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Podcast episode

Press Conferences & Post-Game Interviews

KU coach Bill Self talks after win over Texas Tech

Kansas coach Bill Self talks after his team's 79-42 win over Texas Tech on March 4, 2013.

Download podcast

Podcast episode

Press Conferences & Post-Game Interviews

KU coach Bill Self talks after win over Texas Tech

Kansas coach Bill Self talks after his team's 79-42 win over Texas Tech on March 4, 2013.

Download podcast

Kansas University center Jeff Withey wasn’t going to disappoint his 21,443 Twitter followers — as well as 16,300 Allen Fieldhouse fans — on Senior Night.

The 7-footer from San Diego, who is known for his shot blocking and dunking — definitely not his long-range bombing — was determined to sink the first three-point shot of his KU career in his final home game as a Jayhawk.

“I wanted to shoot one. I think the fans wanted me to. I got a lot of Tweets from fans about shooting a three. My friends back home said, ‘Go ahead and shoot it. You’ll make it,’’’ said Withey, who swished a straight-on three with 5:18 left in the first half of Monday's 79-42 rout of Texas Tech.

He flashed a three-point sign to the fans after hitting the bucket that gave KU a commanding 32-12 lead.

“I knew it was going in. I was ready,” Withey said of being prepared to celebrate. “Before the game, Elijah (Johnson) said he’d get me open to shoot one. I asked him, ‘How should I celebrate?’ It was brought up that’s the way I should do it,” Withey added.

Johnson actually earned an assist on the three — one of his career-best 12 assists in his own Senior Night game.

“He had no choice,” Johnson said of Withey trying a three. “I told him that I was going to drag his man, and as soon as he bit I pitched it back to him. As soon as I turned around I saw Jeff celebrating already.”

Withey can’t wait to joke about his three with a former KU big man, also known for hitting the only three-point try of his career on his own Senior Night.

Zany Scot Pollard, who like Withey is from California, hit a three in the Jayhawks’ Senior Night victory over Kansas State on Feb. 22, 1997, in Allen.

“I heard Scot bragging about that. Not any more,” Withey said with a smile. “I might have to go for the all-time percentage record,” Withey added. “Me and Scot are tied at 100 percent. If I go 2-for-2, I beat him.”

Withey — he erupted for 22 points off 8-of-9 shooting (4-4 from the line) against Tech — has hoisted a three or two at practice during his KU career.

“I’m sure he has,” KU coach Bill Self said, asked if Withey has made threes at practice. “I’ve held him back. It’s very fitting he will be remembered instead of Pollard going 1-for-1 from three. There’s no question who is the better shooter of those two,” Self added, giving the nod to Withey.

Withey had seven points in a senior-dominated 24-4 run that stretched a 13-10 lead to 37-14. Kevin Young (14 points, six boards) scored six, Travis Releford (13 points, 8 of 10 from the line) six and Johnson (seven points) three in the run. Freshman Ben McLemore (13 points), who also likely was playing his final home game, had a bucket in the run.

“It was a great way to send those four studs off, and they’ve been studs the whole time they’ve been here,” Self said. “They’ve won a lot of games, got their degrees and been great ambassadors for our university, and I was certainly proud of the way our crowd acknowledged them and stuck around to hear their speeches.”

The four seniors each spoke for about three minutes apiece following the game, which wasn’t much of a game. Led by Johnson’s nine assists and a combined 36 points from the seniors (Withey 12, Young 10, Releford 9, Johnson 5), KU held a 45-20 lead at the break.

“How good was he tonight? Efficient and just played so well,” Self said of Withey, “but our whole team played so well. Elijah gets 12 dimes and gets nine in the first half. Everybody played well.”

Of the four seniors playing so well, Johnson said: “It’s time to rock out. It’s time to get to business, and I think we all know that. I honestly think that the reason (the last home game) hasn’t hit us yet is because we are so focused on what we have to do. We aren’t dwelling on the moment, and that’s where our heads are at the moment. When I say it’s time to ‘rock out,’ I mean it’s time to go out and leave it all out on the court.”

“Today has been kind of crazy,” Withey noted. “The game was fun and we played hard. For me personally (the thought of the last home game) hasn’t hit me. I don’t think it will for a little while. The fieldhouse has been good to us and the fans have been good to us. This is going to be a night that we will remember for a long time.”

KU will next meet Baylor at 5 p.m. Saturday, in Waco, Texas. If KU wins, it’ll claim at least a share of the Big 12 title.

Comments

KULA 1 year, 1 month ago

OK, Indiana's out for the overall #1 seed. If we win out, we'll be the #1 overall seed.

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Ryan Zimmerman 1 year, 1 month ago

I see a lot of talk about Lucas being the starter next year... Is Embiid that far off?

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Suzi Marshall 1 year, 1 month ago

So much for Indiana's Senior Night vs MSU. If IU wins the BIG 10, bet they hold a No. 1 seed.

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sasnak 1 year, 1 month ago

Kansas ST. is the one I don't want to see, they are a difficult out.

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FarSideHawk 1 year, 1 month ago

The team i DON'T want to see on our side of the bracket is VCU!

They scare me.

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Jack Wilson 1 year, 1 month ago

A projected bracket .. a bit of a reminder that seeding isn't everything. Would you rather be the #1 in the South, or #2 or #3 in the West?

http://network.yardbarker.com/all_sports/article_external/ncaa_tournament_bracket_projections_mar_5/13054975

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Tony Bandle 1 year, 1 month ago

Two thousand thirteen.

The Jayhawks finish this year.

Get the net scissors.

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Ron Franklin 1 year, 1 month ago

Does it seem to anybody else that we have seen more offensive sets the last five games?

The oooooooooooooooooop-fests we've seen the last two games remind me of 08.

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Tony Bandle 1 year, 1 month ago

Let me start the stupidmichael ball rolling early.

Well played game at home against a vastly inferior opponent on a night when historically Kansas is unbeatable. HOWEVER, this next game is frightening.

1] We are on the road and timid BenMac may show up!!!

2] Just entering the city of Waco saps about 10% of your own positive energy!!!!

3] The school name and mascot begin with the letter "B"!!!

4] Baylor will be desperate for a high quality win to sneak into the Big Dance!!!

5] Even a blind pig finds a truffle once in a while and Scott Drew may, accidently, actually make some sound coaching decisions!!!

6] If they are hot, the one thing they can do that we can't totally handle is making threes!!!

7] We could be blinded if they wear those neon banana uniforms!!!

8] If the K-State Kitties win, we'll be under extra pressure to win for the tie!!!

9] Baylor has sucked for so long that the odds are they may just get it together!!!

10] Oh my God, woe is me , the sky is falling and we may get beat 80-0!!!

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Robert Murphy 1 year, 1 month ago

All of us have prejudices and one that Self has is in regard to big men shooting threes. This prejudice extents to the media as well. Thus, for several years now he has not utilized Whithy's good touch and face up shooting ability. This ability has been obvious watching Jeff shoot free throws. The last game demonstrated what could have been. Look at Kevin Durant if you want to see great range for a big man. Next year we have Embiid coming in and he too can become a long range shooter, let us hope he gets the opportunity. Also Lucas. We watch guards miss countless threes but if a big man misses one everyone says that's a shot that the coach would not approve. This needs to be rethought.

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Jared Grillot 1 year, 1 month ago

So lucky to be in AFH last night! I didn't think anything would make the crowd go off more than that wicked behind-the-head alley-oop to KY, until that 3 dropped. Right then and there, I knew this game was done and we were just toying with the poor Red Raiders. It was literally like watching a cat with a spider (mice sometimes escape). You know the spider is toast, but it is still too funny to watch the cat smack it around before it gets bored and eats it. Lob after lob, 3 after 3, block after block, steal after steal, you could just feel the RR futility. Glad I could be there to watch it! Thank you Seniors! RCJH

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sasnak 1 year, 1 month ago

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

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KPOP 1 year, 1 month ago

a senior laden team is of great benefit heading into March and beyond. Of course anything can happen at tournament time but I really expect this team to be final four bound. They are that good and of course, well coached. KU has 4 guys that start that could step up and score 25 points on any given night. not many teams in the country can say that. There is usually one game in the tournament that gets goofy and with 4 seniors on the floor, huge advantage. RCJGKU.

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jaybate 1 year, 1 month ago

This game in Waco will bring out the worst in Scott Drew and the perfect boss for Scott Drew--Kenneth Starr.

But it never fails. To triumph as a good guy, you have to play and beat the villains, not just the other great coaches.

Go, Bill, go!

And I would love it if CBernie got into the act and challenged Kenneth Starr to 1 on 1 to 10 at half time.

Beat Kenneth Down, CBernie. My bones are on you in that show down. Take him hard to glass and he will beg for mercy!

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jaybate 1 year, 1 month ago

“I’m sure he has,” KU coach Bill Self said, asked if Withey has made threes at practice. “I’ve held him back. It’s very fitting he will be remembered instead of Pollard going 1-for-1 from three. There’s no question who is the better shooter of those two,” Self added, giving the nod to Withey.

Self appears really ticked about Pollard having said Self and Hudy finally quit trying to make a weight lifter out of Jeff, and let him be good being a true footer, instead of one of Self's strong, short bigs with KU inches added on.

Scott apparently did Jeff a huge favor by saying something to the staff last off season, but then Scott hugely misread Self's sense of decorum and spoke openly about it in the media this season. Bad Dobby, Scott. Self is too competitive to give credit to someone not on the staff. had you said nothing, he would eventually have come to you. Now it's dog house time. And since you've both got FU money, this could get ugly. Time to buy him a lunch, tell him he is better than Roy, say you screwed up, and keep our house in order. You are a great Jayhawk, Scott, and you will go far in broadcasting, or coaching, if you want it. and your long years in the L mean you are a team player. Don't let a small mistake anyone could have made fester into a grudge. Self has reason to be protected and defended about the issue. It's his turf, not yours. Admit that and this can go quickly away. Self will remember you were right if you acknowledge you stepped on his toes and have learned not to. Plus he is a bad enemy to have. He has been swimming in a lot deeper water than you for a lot longer. Play this smart. I am one of your biggest fans and want to see you succeed. Rock Chalk!

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jaybate 1 year, 1 month ago

I'm am jamba juiced about EJ! His knees are not just ok. They are getting better. That was the most ease of movement so far this season! His knees looked 25% better than his last game. We are damned near unbeatable now. Our only real unproven link is Perry, but I think he is near ready to rise to a challenge. He needs one solid show before the Madness. Bill will find the moment. One solid show and Perry's confidence will skyrocket. Jam Tray even looked like his right knee had a little more strength. Best of all, a-rio and Bill appear to have cleared the air. I saw a little love there.

Did you see how confidently the starters ran the offense when brought back in with 9 minutes to go? great sign! They know what it takes now. The passing is sooooo crisp.

Recommendation: send the guys once a week to a dome for a shoot around and short scrimmage. Ben needs dome time to adjust, or he will have an ofer his first dome game.

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Keith Hummel 1 year, 1 month ago

For me this group of seniors epitomizes Kansas basketball. Each of them paid their dues, each transformed themselves and their game, each is unselfish to a fault, each has embraced and perfected Bill Self's philosophy, and each understands the responsibility that goes with being a Jayhawk. Couldn't be prouder of this group.

I felt sorry for Ben McLemore last night, just as I felt sorry for Thomas Robinson. Ben will never be able to enjoy a tribute like the four seniors received last night, through no fault of his own. That realization has to be tough.

I also wonder what goes through the mind of someone like Andrew Wiggins, who is also a guaranteed OAD. Seems a bit strange for a kid like him to attend Senior night when there is virtually no chance he would ever enjoy that accomplishment himself.

Finally, I have to say that KU does a first-class job of honoring their seniors every year. I can't imagine another school doing it better.

3

DDDHawk 1 year, 1 month ago

Elijah, Travis, Jeff, and Kevin- Thank you all for all of your hard work, dedication, and loyalty to the Kansas program, and to the Kansas fans. We will never forget you, and we look forward to cheering you on the rest of this season! Rock Chalk!

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s6u6r6f 1 year, 1 month ago

Thank you, seniors. Thank you, Ben. Let's keep rolling along. Rock chalk.

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JayHawkFanToo 1 year, 1 month ago

Is there a player in College BBall that is having more fun than Kevin Young? He seems to having so much fun, it is contagious.

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Alex Wishart 1 year, 1 month ago

I'll second the Sherron family line of thinking. But, You've got to give some credit to Brady and his parents though... They're the ones that showed Sherron a family atmosphere away from home and took him in. I think the bond of friendship between Brady and Sherron really set the tone for the FOE mentality. The Morri (Angel included) carried the torch. TRob gave everyone a reason to keep the family thing going. Which leads into one of the underlying themes of Kansas basketball... Family. HCBS definitely deserves some credit too.

4

Ethan Berger 1 year, 1 month ago

Random thought. I think the impact of Sherron Collins is still felt. I remember that the national title team seemed to like each other and had great chemistry, but never had that family feel. I remember that Collins was the big brother to all those freshmen a year later (2 of which spoke tonight). I remember his senior night being extremely emotional not just for him, but for the whole team. Now with EJ and Rel leaving, that family from 5 years ago starts to break up. That team knew they were good, and unfortunately lost back to back to mid majors. But the importance of Collins sometimes is forgotten. He was the leader that gelled like few others, and now tonight we possibly could see the end to that era. Tharpe, White, and Ellis are now the future of KU ball. Hopefully they keep the family as strong as ever.

2

Woody Cragg 1 year, 1 month ago

Good for you & Mom,& hope she looks the other direction when you're giving all the "German salutes." Not intentionally politically incorrect, that's what my mother called it, she worked in a munitions factory during WWII. Drive safe & show her an exceptionally wonderful time.

1

texashawk10 1 year, 1 month ago

My itenerary for Saturday: Wake up around 8 and have breakfast. 10am hit the road up highway 6 with my mom (I'm single and my mom's a die hard KU fan too so I`m taking her with me) and give College Station the finger as I drive past on my way Waco. Head over to the Health Shack for lunch and then take the Dr. Pepper museum tour before heading to the new stadium site and symbolically give Drayton McLane the finger for what he did to the Astros. Then I plan on making my way to Ferrell Center and watch Bill Self make Scott Drew cry as KU wraps up their 9th straight regular season championship, hopefully outright but that's beyond KU' control though unfortunately. After the game I haven't decided where to eat yet and then getting home sometime around midnight while giving College Station another 1 finger salute on the way home.

I may be just a little excited about Saturday right now and wishing I could sleep for the next 104 hours and wake up Saturday morning.

16

Ben G Solis 1 year, 1 month ago

I agree I also think this is my favorite senior class I'm gonna make sure to make the barn burner this year

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Born_And_Raised_A_KU_Fan 1 year, 1 month ago

When Withey hit that three, I immediately thought of Scot Pollard's three against K-State on Senior Day 1997.

I don't think three-point shooting was in Texas Tech's scouting report on Withey. :)

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farnamjayhawk 1 year, 1 month ago

Might be my favorite Senior class of all time

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