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Saturday, November 30, 2013

Notebook: Wiggins scores season-low six

Kansas guard Andrew Wiggins redirects a pass by UTEP guard Julian Washburn during the first half on Saturday, Nov. 30, 2013 in Paradise Island, Bahamas.

Kansas guard Andrew Wiggins redirects a pass by UTEP guard Julian Washburn during the first half on Saturday, Nov. 30, 2013 in Paradise Island, Bahamas.

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Podcast episode

Press Conferences & Post-Game Interviews

Self: Jayhawks 'exposed' in Bahamas

Kansas basketball players Joel Embiid and Perry Ellis, and their coach Bill Self, talk about the hard lessons they learned after going 2-1 at the Battle 4 Atlantis.

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KANSAS 67, UTEP 63

Box score

— Kansas University freshman Andrew Wiggins, who has been slowed by a bout of the flu, scored six points off 2-of-9 shooting with seven rebounds while playing 34 minutes in Saturday’s 67-63 Battle 4 Atlantis victory over UTEP.

He missed four shots and did not score while playing 18 minutes the final half. Wiggins had 10 points off 3-of-8 shooting in Friday’s 63-59 semifinal loss to Villanova.

“I didn’t even ask him,” Self said, asked if Wiggins still was slowed by the bug. “He was dragging. I don’t know if it was fatigue from flu or whatever. I don’t think he played with unbelievable energy. He did get his hands on a lot of balls the second half in going to the offensive glass.”

Wiggins had six rebounds the final half — three offensive.

“I would say they are all trying to do that,” Self said, asked if Wiggins was trying to find a comfort zone in the offense. “I would say they are all trying to do that. I would say that is a fair assessment.”

Wiggins wasn’t made available for comment at all during the tourney.

Embiid rejects seven: KU freshman center Joel Embiid blocked a Jayhawk freshman record seven shots, all in the second half.

“I always know to go straight up and try to block it and contest it,” 7-foot Cameroon native Embiid said, simply.

He passed Nick Collison, who had six blocks versus Nebraska in February of 2000.

“Kansas’ length got us,” UTEP coach Tim Floyd said. “The big freshman had an impact on the game.”

Ellis honored: KU sophomore forward Perry Ellis was named to the Battle 4 Atlantis all-tournament team, and was the only Jayhawk to receive the honor.

Black’s OK: KU senior center Tarik Black banged his right knee and played just two minutes the second half. Coach Bill Self said he was OK and didn’t suffer any structural damage.

Fake drill: For some reason, there was no ball available, so the Jayhawks did a fake layup and dunk drill before the start of the second half. They pretended they had a ball, passing it to each other in line and also faking shots. A ball was located before long and the Jayhawks continued to partake in the drill, this time with a ball.

No cheering in the sportsbook: About 20 KU fans watched the KU-Kansas State football game in the sportsbook of the Atlantis casino. The game was available for betting with KSU an 18-point favorite. It was a pretty silent group that watched the Wildcats prevail, 31-10. Fans, by the way, were unable to bet the basketball games contested at the Battle 4 Atlantis. The sportsbook did not take action on the games with gambling always a concern of the NCAA and its member institutions.

Mason tweets: Freshman guard Frank Mason, who was not one of the two players available to the media for comment after Friday’s loss to Villanova, did speak via Twitter late Friday night/early Saturday.

“Couple bad decisions by me tonight, Feel like I let my team down, but those mistakes I made I definitely could learn from them.”

He added ... ‘Everybody who got some to say about me and my decisions it’s just motivation I know I made bad decisions and I will improve from them.”

When asked who was complaining, he wrote, “Some of KU fans; they love us when we win though.”

He also added, “Moving on to the next game tomorrow .. that game tonight will definitely be a good teaching tape for the team.”

And ... “I never lose faith.”

Mason had the spinning layup and foul shot that gave KU a late one-point lead over Villanova. He also missed a three with five seconds left with KU down, two.

Comments

Brianna Zaleski 10 months ago

No balls available during pregame? No surprise at that amateur venue.

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Ashwin Rao 10 months ago

I am on Frank's bandwagon too... He needs to start (and learn quickly from it!).

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Gerry Butler 10 months ago

before the start of the 2nd half, not pregame

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Kye Clark 10 months ago

Frank couldn't be more right. KU fans (and probably all sports fans) can be extremely fickle. Yes we're spoiled. We expect to win every game despite knowing this is an unrealistic expectation. And in this day & age of message boards, twitter, etc. players are going to hear/see it more than ever. Not saying it's fair, but athletes have to develop tougher skin or selective hearing to deal with this.

That being said, I think the vast majority of KU fans acknowledge that Frank didn't play well yesterday but are still very excited about him and his future as a Jayhawk. Count me in that group. This guy is going to be great!

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Mike Bratisax 10 months ago

"When asked who was complaining, he wrote, “Some of KU fans; they love us when we win though.”

Welcome to the show Mason.

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Doug Merrill 10 months ago

The idiot Van Gundy was all over him for fouling in the final few minutes...Bill was after him, too, when the courtside reporter was trying to start his interview with HCBS at the end of the game.

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Len Shaffer 10 months ago

There was NOTHING wrong with what Van Gundy said.

In fact, I liked the fact that he didn't just use the "freshman mistakes" cliché. As he pointed out so accurately, it's not like Mason hadn't ever played basketball before. Anyone should know not to be fouling in those situations, and ESPECIALLY not to come close to fouling when you're up by 4 in the final seconds.

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Nicholas Cederlind 10 months ago

Gary, thank you for mentioning that Andrew was recovering from the flu during the tourney. Why has the rest of the media has chosen to ignore this and simply knock Wiggin's performance? I'm not worried about him one bit.

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Benz Junque 10 months ago

Sorry, but I am worried about his general lack of intensity, not just n the Bahamas but all season. Being a great athlete is only great if you play to your athletic abilities. I can guard a guy that just stands around the perimeter and watches. Get MOVING, Wiggins.

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