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Kansas defeats Iowa State, 77-70

  • 8 p.m., Jan. 13, 2014
  • Hilton Coliseum, Ames, IA

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Leaders: Tharpe’s big night keeps KU unbeaten in Big 12

Kansas point guard Naadir Tharpe pumps his fist after forcing an Iowa State timeout during a Jayhawk run in the second half on Monday, Jan. 13, 2014 at Hilton Coliseum in Ames, Iowa.

Kansas point guard Naadir Tharpe pumps his fist after forcing an Iowa State timeout during a Jayhawk run in the second half on Monday, Jan. 13, 2014 at Hilton Coliseum in Ames, Iowa.

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Podcast episode

Press Conferences & Post-Game Interviews

KU coach Bill Self after Jayhawks' huge, 77-70 victory at Iowa State

KU coach Bill Self after Jayhawks' huge 77-70 victory at Iowa State

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KANSAS 77, IOWA STATE 70

Box Score

— He didn’t quite match Elijah Johnson’s 39-point outing of a year ago.

But Kansas University junior Naadir Tharpe continued a two-year tradition of scoring from the point guard position in Hilton Coliseum, exploding for a career-high 23 points in Monday’s 77-70 victory over Iowa State.

“I thought he played great. He hit shots, was finding the open man. I think he was player of the game,” said KU freshman Andrew Wiggins, who was outstanding as well, grabbing 19 rebounds, one off KU’s freshman record of 20 set by Eric Chenowith against Texas A&M in 1998.

Tharpe — he scored 14 points the first half as the teams played to a 36-36 deadlock — hit seven of nine shots overall and was three of four from three. He also made six free throws in seven tries and had four assists against four turnovers with six rebounds in 36 minutes.

“I thought Naadir was terrific. He was fabulous,” said KU coach Bill Self. “He was good the whole game. Anytime anybody scores 23 on nine shots, he’s doing good things. I thought Naa gave us confidence, starting the second half to make a three out of post trap on the first possession ... it seems like a little thing, but next thing you know we are up seven.”

Indeed, Tharpe opened the scoring in the final half as (12-4, 3-0) KU eventually built a game-high lead of 12 points and was able to outlast an ISU team that fell to 14-2, 2-2.

Tharpe wore a red hat with the word “leaders” on it as he met media after the game. It’d be a good story if it’s because he’s a team leader. 

Instead “leaders” is a clothing line, the star of the game explained with a smile.

As far as trying to match his former teammate Johnson’s performance ... “Some people were talking on Twitter: ‘You are going to have another game like Elijah.’ It was nothing like Elijah did. It was more a team game,” Tharpe said.

Tharpe surpassed his previous scoring high of 20 points against Toledo on Dec. 30.

Monday’s scoring outburst came out of nowhere for the 5-foot-11 dynamo from Worcester, Mass.

“Coach told me at shoot-around .... I missed a lot of shots ... he said, ‘play with confidence and be aggressive,’’’ Tharpe said.

He hit two free throws at :46.9, stretching a 72-67 lead to 74-67, part of his six of seven deadeye performance from the line.

“It feels good. Coach always says, ‘Big time players play in the big games,’’’ Tharpe said. “I feel I played well. I had a couple bad turnovers. It’s part of basketball, too, you’ve got to think next play.”

KU freshman big man Joel Embiid also was huge for the Jayhawks, scoring six points in an 8-2 run that stretched a 56-51 lead to 64-53 at 7:52. Embiid had picked up a technical foul in the first half for pulling down on the jersey of DeAndre Kane.

Embiid had four points and two rebounds the first half. He finished with 16 points, nine rebounds, five blocks and seven turnovers in 28 minutes.

“Coach told me to stay aggressive,” Embiid said of the halftime talk. “The past two games, I knew I had to play well for us to win. The second half I changed my mindset. I went like I’m used to. I got aggressive.”

As far as rebounder deluxe Wiggins, his 19 boards were most by a Jayhawk since Nick Collison had 19 against Duke in the 2003 NCAAs.

“We came out with a bang. We stayed aggressive,” said Wiggins, who said a talk with his dad stressed the importance of rebounding.

Another key to victory was Iowa State hit just four of 25 threes. KU cashed five of 16.

“This was one of our better road wins,” Self said. “We’re so fortunate because they missed shots. We defended them well, but they missed shots. We handled the ball miserably (24 turnovers to ISU’s eight). We looked like third graders at times handling the ball.”

Iowa State was able to withstand a game-opening 15-4 run  by KU and by halftime had matched the Jayhawks point for point, 36-36.

Senior guard DeAndre Kane (21 points) who played despite suffering a severe ankle sprain on Saturday at Oklahoma, hit a three-pointer over 7-footer Embiid to beat the halftime buzzer and tie the contest.

“All that did at the end of the first half was make it a 20-minute game. That’s what I told our guys,” Self said.

ISU in the first half survived miserable 2-of-13 three-point shooting, the 14-point onslaught of KU point guard Tharpe and the 12-rebound, 11-point performance of Wiggins

Wiggins had six points and Tharpe five in the 15-4 opening surge. A technical foul by Embiid, who pulled hard on Kane’s jersey, at 15:13, led to two free throws by Georges Niang and started a 14-5 run to cut the gap to 20-18 at 10:22.

The Jayhawks grabbed a 30-22 lead off a Tharpe three at 6:11. ISU, which had just two turnovers the first half, closed the half with a 14-6 surge.

KU will next meet Oklahoma State at 3 p.m., Saturday, in Allen.He didn’t quite match Elijah Johnson’s 39-point outing of a year ago.

But Kansas University junior Naadir Tharpe continued a two-year tradition of scoring from the point guard position in Hilton Coliseum, exploding for a career-high 23 points in Monday’s 77-70 victory over Iowa State.

“I thought he played great. He hit shots, was finding the open man. I think he was player of the game,” said KU freshman Andrew Wiggins, who was outstanding as well, grabbing 19 rebounds, one off KU’s freshman record of 20 set by Eric Chenowith against Texas A&M in 1998.

Tharpe — he scored 14 points the first half as the teams played to a 36-36 deadlock — hit seven of nine shots overall and was three of four from three. He also made six free throws in seven tries and had four assists against four turnovers with six rebounds in 36 minutes.

“I thought Naadir was terrific. He was fabulous,” said KU coach Bill Self. “He was good the whole game. Anytime anybody scores 23 on nine shots, he’s doing good things. I thought Naa gave us confidence, starting the second half to make a three out of post trap on the first possession ... it seems like a little thing, but next thing you know we are up seven.”

Indeed, Tharpe opened the scoring in the final half as (12-4, 3-0) KU eventually built a game-high lead of 12 points and was able to outlast an ISU team that fell to 14-2, 2-2.

Tharpe wore a red hat with the word “leaders” on it as he met media after the game. It’d be a good story if it’s because he’s a team leader. 

Instead “leaders” is a clothing line, the star of the game explained with a smile.

As far as trying to match his former teammate Johnson’s performance ... “Some people were talking on Twitter: ‘You are going to have another game like Elijah.’ It was nothing like Elijah did. It was more a team game,” Tharpe said.

Tharpe surpassed his previous scoring high of 20 points against Toledo on Dec. 30.

Monday’s scoring outburst came out of nowhere for the 5-foot-11 dynamo from Worcester, Mass.

“Coach told me at shoot-around .... I missed a lot of shots ... he said, ‘play with confidence and be aggressive,’’’ Tharpe said.

He hit two free throws at :46.9, stretching a 72-67 lead to 74-67, part of his six of seven deadeye performance from the line.

“It feels good. Coach always says, ‘Big time players play in the big games,’’’ Tharpe said. “I feel I played well. I had a couple bad turnovers. It’s part of basketball, too, you’ve got to think next play.”

KU freshman big man Joel Embiid also was huge for the Jayhawks, scoring six points in an 8-2 run that stretched a 56-51 lead to 64-53 at 7:52. Embiid had picked up a technical foul in the first half for pulling down on the jersey of DeAndre Kane.

Embiid had four points and two rebounds the first half. He finished with 16 points, nine rebounds, five blocks and seven turnovers in 28 minutes.

“Coach told me to stay aggressive,” Embiid said of the halftime talk. “The past two games, I knew I had to play well for us to win. The second half I changed my mindset. I went like I’m used to. I got aggressive.”

As far as rebounder deluxe Wiggins, his 19 boards were most by a Jayhawk since Nick Collison had 19 against Duke in the 2003 NCAAs.

“We came out with a bang. We stayed aggressive,” said Wiggins, who said a talk with his dad stressed the importance of rebounding.

Another key to victory was Iowa State hit just four of 25 threes. KU cashed five of 16.

“This was one of our better road wins,” Self said. “We’re so fortunate because they missed shots. We defended them well, but they missed shots. We handled the ball miserably (24 turnovers to ISU’s eight). We looked like third graders at times handling the ball.”

Iowa State was able to withstand a game-opening 15-4 run  by KU and by halftime had matched the Jayhawks point for point, 36-36.

Senior guard DeAndre Kane (21 points) who played despite suffering a severe ankle sprain on Saturday at Oklahoma, hit a three-pointer over 7-footer Embiid to beat the halftime buzzer and tie the contest.

“All that did at the end of the first half was make it a 20-minute game. That’s what I told our guys,” Self said.

ISU in the first half survived miserable 2-of-13 three-point shooting, the 14-point onslaught of KU point guard Tharpe and the 12-rebound, 11-point performance of Wiggins

Wiggins had six points and Tharpe five in the 15-4 opening surge. A technical foul by Embiid, who pulled hard on Kane’s jersey, at 15:13, led to two free throws by Georges Niang and started a 14-5 run to cut the gap to 20-18 at 10:22.

The Jayhawks grabbed a 30-22 lead off a Tharpe three at 6:11. ISU, which had just two turnovers the first half, closed the half with a 14-6 surge.

KU will next meet Oklahoma State at 3 p.m., Saturday, in Allen. Self is hoping that game is a continuation of what he's seen of late in league play. The Jayhawks before, during and after Monday's game had smiles on their faces.

“Maybe they are growing up,” Self said of his young Jayhawks. “If you have followed our team closely, you can make a case this team enjoyed playing less than teams we’ve had. Since we’ve started conference play they are having as much fun as any team we’ve had. Maybe they are growing up, or saw the ball go in the hole. They are having fun right now.”

Comments

Suzi Marshall 7 months, 2 weeks ago

All aboard! The Jayhawk Express is pulling out and bound for GLORY!!!!

Kansas waltzed into Ames and played appalling ball with 24 TO, 26 PF, and a poor performance by Ellis. The turnover numbers are a joke…. Embiid 7, Wiggins 6, Tharpe 4. ISU 12 steals to our 4. We let them shoot 34 FT to our 19. Gave up 16 O-Rebs. All that and we still win the game.

ISU’s atrocious shooting combined with our outstanding board work (Wiggins - 19 boards) gave us an absolute steal of a HUGE game.

Wins the next two home games vs. OSU and Baylor will put a major hurt on the Big 12. Here we go...RCJH!!!!

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Chris Shaw 7 months, 2 weeks ago

To Wiggins credit...I know of at least 3 and possibly a 4th in there were all drives to the basket. I can handle turnovers trying to make plays while getting to the rim. I also believe a couple of those were fouls, but I do think Wiggins TO's were a bit skewed last night.

I will take some of those TO's as long as Wiggins stays aggressive to the rack.

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Joe Baker 7 months, 2 weeks ago

Wiggins said Self told him to "not let up." Wiggins translated that as "being aggressive."

0

Andy Tweedy 7 months, 2 weeks ago

FT's weren't really even 34 to 19. I think at least 10 of them came at the end when ISU resorted to fouling. ISU won't get those kinds of numbers in Lawrence.

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Benz Junque 7 months, 2 weeks ago

Six of them were in the last minute where ISU fouled us to stop the clock. Before that it was 34-13 in Ft attempts. I agree with Chris Shaw that about half of Wiggins' turnovers were on strips as he drove the lane where a foul should have been called. If what was called a foul AGAINST us were fouls, then those were all fouls as well.

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Suzi Marshall 7 months, 2 weeks ago

Yes Wiggins was indeed foulded on about 3 of his drives resulting in strips/turnovers. However, that more points the need for him to take the ball in for a strong.finish. The ball is often very loose in his hands as he goes for the dipsy doodle finish.

Wiggins, Ellis and the team would be much better off if they focused on a strong finish at the rim.

0

Chris Shaw 7 months, 2 weeks ago

I thought last night was the most aggressive I've seen him go to the rack this year. Yes, it may be softer in some people's views, but I liked what Wiggins was doing last night. I still hat that 20'3" jump shot with his foot barely over the line, but hopefully that comes with more game experience.

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Suzi Marshall 7 months, 2 weeks ago

No doubt he is getting better as he becomes more comfortable and confident.I'm glad he's taking it in but the next step is to not try to hard to avoid contact and go for the dunk as a default. You can visibly see he's working on his J release, which is looking more and more like the release on his FTs.

0

Rodney Crain 7 months, 2 weeks ago

Thanks to Wiggins Father for telling Andrew to get after rebounding.

0

Walter Bridges 7 months, 1 week ago

Nice post Suzi.,.but rough waters or broken track still lies ahead. We are on a good upswing, enjoy it.

0

Dirk Medema 7 months, 2 weeks ago

Wiggs spent several minutes laughing at ISU before the last inbounds play. With less than 20 seconds, KU had gotten a bit lazy and someone was wide open under the basket. Should have been an easy bunny - except that Wiggs EMPHATICALLY stuffed. No free points. They are really starting to embrace the hustle and D - none more than Wiggs, who finally seems to have convinced coach to let him have the other teams top player. As a whole, the team probably still miss the 40 minute intensity and a bit of the muscle ball, but they are really starting to embrace Self's (desired) identity for the team.

0

Luca Rossi 7 months, 2 weeks ago

He was laughing because the inbounder threw the ball off of him because they were about to get a 5 second call, that's what it looked like to me.

4

Benz Junque 7 months, 2 weeks ago

Thank you. You are correct. Wiggins was not laughing AT Iowa State.

0

Luca Rossi 7 months, 2 weeks ago

Yes its great that KU won last night. Yes its great that KU is 3-0 in conference.
However I still see big holes in this team's armor. I believe Iowa State lost the game much more than I think KU won it. Iowa State's three point shooting was putrid. That was probably the worst shooting performance they will have all year. It would be one thing if KU was bothering their shots and playing good D but it looked to me like they were missing a lot of open threes.

Even with the poor shooting, they still had a chance down the stretch because of a big flaw I see with KU. They do not do a good job closing out games. It bit them last year in the Michigan game. I can't understand why the KU players keep trying to force quick shots when they are up 8 pts with 4 minutes left. Tharpe finally slowed things down a little bit once it got to the two minute mark but I believe it should've started with 5 minutes to go when they were up around 9 pts. Use a full clock and don't give the opponent so many chances to get back into the game. There were several times where ISU had a three pointer on the way that would have cut the lead to 3 or 4 pts in the last couple minutes but missed every time. Michigan hit those shots.

Also, KU is notorious for double digit turnovers. It seems like every game they have more turnovers than the opponent. Even twice as many, often finishing with 20+. Imagine if they could cut that number to less than 10.

So in summary, I kindof think KU got lucky last night. Poor shooting by ISU, didn't salt away the game down the stretch, and had 24 turnovers. We'll take the big win but hopefully they see on film that there's a lot of improvement needed if they want to have a chance to hang another banner.

RockkChalkk

1

Brett McCabe 7 months, 2 weeks ago

Overall, a fair assessment. However, I never evaluate a performance based on another team missing shots or free throws, only on what our team did.

Twenty-four turnovers is shockingly bad basketball. The team has to improve its game-management or it will be a short March for all. The bench also decided t take the night off.

On the flip side, the rebounding advantage shows an aggressive team that is getting tougher. And a win on the road in Ames against a pre-season contender also shows toughness.

As Coach Townsend said after the game, if we can ever get all of the guys playing well on the same night, we'll be hard to guard. If Perry and Wayne have even average games last night, we win going away. Better ball control and more consistent play from all of the starters will make this team special. Now we have to see how badly they want it.

1

Michael Leiker 7 months, 2 weeks ago

I think you can sum up the chinks in the armor much more simply than that, turnovers. 2 of Keegan's best 3 for the game had 13 combined. Wiggins is doing some nice things but those six turnovers are probably worth 10 points. In Big 12 play he's shown himself to be a well below average ball handler. Shooting 32% from 3 on the year. Points against KSU came in low pressure game in hand time. I'd really like to see him at the 4 more with a small lineup for 7-8 min a game. Those turnovers and 10% lower shooting average than where you need to be to be productive on the wing are gonna bite KU down the line. If he was playing inside more he'd spend much more time on the line which is where he's most productive.

0

Gene Jackson 7 months, 2 weeks ago

Two or three times a game he is striped of the ball as he is charging in for a layup or dunk. Surely this can be improved?

0

Kit Duncan 7 months, 2 weeks ago

Not all those strips are takeaways but fouls that are not called. I believe officials call fewer fouls on opposing teams when Wiggins is driving because they either don't want to show favoritism to a nationally recognized player or because AW's moves are so good they get caught up in watching him and not the other player.
...sometimes he just gets stripped.

0

Michael Leiker 7 months, 2 weeks ago

I don't think officials think that much, they react to seeing contact, 95% of the time, they make the right call. Wiggins is extremely veritcal when he drives, you don't have any elbows or knees or shoulders that you have to reach around, he makes it extremely easy to take the ball from him.

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Benz Junque 7 months, 2 weeks ago

The one thing that Wiggins has going AGAINST him in this situation is that he is so skilled at moving his body through contact that he comes off of contact without looking like he got knocked into. He has such good body control that he seems to just rub right off of it and slide past. Because he is ABLE to still get off a good shot, he tries to instead of just flailing his arms in the air flopping and praying for the call.

On every one of his drives he was bumped into and changed course. Those were all called as fouls when Black did it to ISU players because he is big and they all flailed around like they had been shot by a sniper. If they are fouls ON us they should be fouls FOR us.

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Ashwin Rao 7 months, 2 weeks ago

Luck favors the prepared. As a fan, I don't overanalyze the games, but I enjoy the outcomes! Great game last night!

0

Chris Shaw 7 months, 2 weeks ago

Failure to prepare is preparing to fail. John Wooden.

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Benz Junque 7 months, 2 weeks ago

I did not see KU force up a quick shot at the end of the game even once. If anything, they were so obsessed with running the clock all the way down that they never got around to taking a good shot. I would rather them take a good shot with 5 seconds left than try to burn off those last five seconds. They passed upa number of scoring chances late in shot clocks to try to run it even later.

The only issue they had last night was unforced turnovers. That has to get cleaned up. They would have won this game by 20+ if they cut their turnovers in half.

So much for the notion of winning games DESPITE Andrew Wiggins. No freshman n the last 15 years has put up at least 17 pts and 19 rebounds on the road against a ranked team. NONE. His defense was a huge reason why ISU constantly settled for long jumpers, they simply could not get around him or throw it over him. ISU is short and Wiggins length and ability to slide side to side quickly gave them fits.

They have won two of their tougher conference road games. Still to come are Okie State,. Baylor and K-State all of which KU has the ability to win.

2

Luca Rossi 7 months, 2 weeks ago

Wish I had recorded this game so I could provide some data to look at. If anyone did, and has some spare time, I'd love to see a listing of KU's shots in the last 5:30 left in the game with the time left on the shot clock, and the score (+8, +9, etc).

0

Jonathan Allison 7 months, 2 weeks ago

at one point with I think around 2:30 left Selden passed up a wide open three with probably about 15 seconds left, and KU move the ball around by then was called for an offfensive foul with less than 5 remaining on the shot clock. Sometimes you just need to take the wide open shot if it's there.

With 5:00 left and a 10 point lead I don't think that it's a good idea for a team this inexperienced to try to burn clock. There's too much time and not enough separation to pass up open looks for the sake of shortening the game. However If you're up 6 or 7 points with less than 2 to play then I think that you definitely have to try to run as much time off as possible. It's likely going to come down to free throws at that point.

In my opinion 4:00 is probably when the team should start thinking about the clock, and if the lead is 6-12 then I wouldn't start burning clock till around 2:30. If the lead is less than 6 then I'm still looking for the first high percentage shot.

0

Reggie Flenory 7 months, 2 weeks ago

Isu doesnt have the length to play wit most good teams that have great bigs when u live by the 3 u also die by it ku didnt get lucky we just have to many weapons and we still didnt play our best game yet ROCK CHALK

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RJ King 7 months, 2 weeks ago

KU's possessions in final 5 minutes - starting at the:

5:21 - KU up by 9: 20 on shot clock Selden misses a 3 (Wiggins put back)

4:53 - KU up by 10: 20 on shot clock Ellis misses layup

4:23 - KU up by 7: 24 on shot clock Offensive foul on Embiid

3:57 - KU up by 7: 14 on shot clock Tharpe fouled while driving

3:24 - KU up by 9: 20 on shot clock Embiid striped while going up

3:01 - KU up by 9: 10 on shot clock Tharpe missed 3

2:24 - KU up by 8: 6 on shot clock Tharpe drives, dishes to Ellis

        3 on shot clock - Ellis fumbles

1:39 - KU up by 5: 10 on shot clock Wiggins drives and is stripped

0:52 - KU up by 5: 32 on shot clock Tharpe fouled

0:26 - KU up by 6

ISU turnover, Wiggins fouled on fast break

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Benz Junque 7 months, 2 weeks ago

So not running clock until about 3 minutes left. I have no problem with that. As I said, they just FAILED miserably on every possession where they changed from scoring mode to burning clock mode. The only thing they accomplished was to burn the clock.

0

Luca Rossi 7 months, 1 week ago

Awesome RJ, thanks for the data. Up as much as they were I think they should have started thinking about clock management 5 minute mark instead of at the 3 minute mark which is what it appears they did.

The Michigan game still stings. Don't want to see KU lose another game they dominate because the other team gets red hot with their final possessions. Possessions that could possibly be eliminated by playing smart down the stretch.

0

Matt Spitzli 7 months, 2 weeks ago

Formatting is screwed up. The story starts over half way down the page. "KU will next meet Oklahoma State at 3 p.m., Saturday, in Allen.He didn’t quite match Elijah Johnson’s 39-point outing of a year ago." Surely I'm not the only one who has caught this!

5

Benz Junque 7 months, 2 weeks ago

Mine is just fine. Maybe your browser is choking on the 8 million ads.

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Doug Merrill 7 months, 2 weeks ago

Mine also starts over again with a paragraph left. Maybe it is because I am on Safari though, something I use so I don't have to deal with the idiotic ad questions. They get you either way!

I think those who are "still seeing chinks in the armor" are simply seeing a young team who found a way to win in a really, really hostile environment against a team inspired by an incredible "Big 12 player of the week" performance by Kane. What a player to have accomplished all he did while so hurt. ISU missed a lot of shots but if KU hadn't rebounded so well, we wouldn't have won. Turnovers happen on the road in tough locations. This stat shows how incredibly well they played the first half in Norman. That should get better. However, last night's win was huge and to cavil about what they didn't do misses the point. RCJH!

0

Tony Bandle 7 months, 2 weeks ago

As I predicted....3 down, 15 to go!! Have faith Hawks fans. Watching this team grow is like watching a movie in fast forward.

Jo Jo is on another level already with only three and a half seasons under his belt. Gosh I wish he'd stay one more year.

0

Brad Farha 7 months, 2 weeks ago

Isn't it only 2.5 seasons for Jo Jo? I thought he started organized ball his junior year in high school.

0

Titus Canby 7 months, 2 weeks ago

Any Weatherwax sighting last night?

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Justin Kruse 7 months, 2 weeks ago

I was hoping coach would seek him out for a handshake after the game.

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Ron Franklin 7 months, 2 weeks ago

the story repeats definitely repeats itself.

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Waylon Cook 7 months, 2 weeks ago

You get a warm fuzzy feeling beating ISU in Hilton.

I find the comment of "these guys weren't having fun playing, now they are" from Self as a very telling tale. I have thought from the get go this was going to have to be a team Self just let score and the D would get better. Seems since the SDSU loss that is what is happening.

Seriously Big 12 watch out.

0

Rodney Crain 7 months, 2 weeks ago

A road win in conference is rarely easy against a ranked team and are usually close. ISU would typically make a team pay for 24 turnovers, but it was their own poor shooting combined with getting out rebounded that did them in. They never seemed in control even with 9 more chances, and 15 more free throws. They make just 3 more shots and it is a very different game, or outcome.

I want to keep seeing improvement and although not a great game statistically, the last time the stat sheet looked like this in FL we were never really in the game and lost. We did not play our best game but found a way to win on the road. That is a big positive step.

We did enough good things to win we take it and move on.

0

Jonathan Allison 7 months, 2 weeks ago

With our next two games we have a good chance to put a little distance between us and our chief competition in the league.

Don't celebrate too hard, we've gotta prepare for OSU and Baylor.

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Chris Shaw 7 months, 2 weeks ago

BigManU Observation and Notes:

What a great win for Kansas on the road against a really good Iowa State squad. The thing I am loving most about the last 3 games is that Kansas is finally starting to show some "Swag" out there. They are finally starting to have some fun!

I am really really glad Iowa State had an off shooting night. We all know Iowa State shoots a lot of 3's, but they did miss a lot of open looks.

Tharpe: Tharpe is playing like I envisioned him playing all along. Yes, he was on fire last night, but what I loved about Tharpe last night was that he was making an extra pass within the half court set swinging the ball across court to wide open Selden and Wiggins.

Tharpe as on fire as he was even passed up a wide open look to give it to Embiid in the short corner only to have Embiid travel. I mean, who would have thought Self would have ever had to tell Tharpe to shoot the ball in that situation. I found that pretty funny.

Tharpe is playing within himself and making really good decsions thus far 3 games into conference play. It's amzing to me posters are still giving him grief out there. PG's make plays and they are going to have turnovers from time to time. I actually saw Naadir Tharpe last night showing some "Swag" which is a big bonus to this team IMO. First time all season I've seen it. He has 14 assists to 5 turnovers in 3 conference games. That is pretty darn good all the while shooting 13-23 from the Field.

Embiid: I love his passion out there, but he needs to curtail the extracurricular activity. Embiid put on a show last night in the second half. I know I mentioned this last game against KSU, but the growth in just 8 days since SDSU passing out of the double team is amazing.

All the big's outside of Ellis are getting doubled...taking a dribble to release that pressure, but they are keeping their dribble and reposting. Black had a great move with a left hand layup after keeping his dribble out of the double. Embiid has completely pulled a Jeff Withey on me. I never want Embiid out of the game. He's still going to make some bonehead mistakes from time to time, but he's fully gained my trust.

2

Benz Junque 7 months, 2 weeks ago

Those open threes get a lot tougher when you know that if you don't knock them down then your team is screwed because they can't find scoring anywhere else on the floor.

And that Niang kid was absolutely terrible. He is their best big? That dude has a 4 inch vertical MAYBE. At 6'7 with no ability to jump at all, he can be guarded on the perimeter by virtually anyone. If Iowa State ever recruits an actual center that can play in the post then they will be good. He looked like a YMCA player out there.

0

Chris Shaw 7 months, 2 weeks ago

I agree Niang struggled last night and may not be the most athletic kid out there, but he's pretty darn good in the past as a Freshmen. In 3 prior games against the Jayhawks prior to last night he was averaging just under 16 points a game. The length bothered Niang last night and he missed some shots.

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Chris Shaw 7 months, 2 weeks ago

Wiggins: All over the Boards!!!!!!!!Love seeing Wiggins active and doing some dirty work. 17 and 19 is a pretty stellar game. You could actually see Wiggins having some fun out there. He is usually pretty stoic in his demeanor, but you could see he was enjoying himself out there last night.

I mentioned this during the game thread, but anybody else notice how much of a two footed jumper Wiggins is? From my experience you are always a half step slower to the rim being a two footed jumper. He will jump off one ocassionally like he did on that dunk attempt he got fouled on, but he usually has to gather himself and jump off two. Jordan could do both, but all the greats are primarily one footed jumpers. Just an observation and something I noticed.

Selden: I like the fact Selden played within himself last night. He knocked down a few timely shots, but while he wasn't impacting the team from a scoring standpoint...he was making plays for others and distributing the baskeball as his 6 assists indicated. That one handed pass to Ellis for a dunk was sweet. I really like the passion Selden is showing out there. His attitude has been infectious through the first 3 conference games.

Ellis: Man he's Jekyll and Hyde. Need a little more consistency out of Ellis. I will say he did have a couple of huge buckets when the game got tight despite him struggling last night. That does show toughness. I wish he was better passing out of the double team.

Bench: Not much production from the bench tonight, which may not be bad at this moment in the season. Traylor drives me nuts sometimes out there. You never know what he's gonna do. He can make a spectacular play only to turn around and just hand the ball off to the opponent.

As I said above, Black had that nice bucket out of the double team. I seriously thought Black got more then 5 minutes. Black is also up and down, but nobody can question his attitude this year. He's been magnificent IMO with his positive attitude towards this team this year. He may not realize it, but little stuff like that will get him a professional contract somewhere.

Finally, 15 more to go for 10 straight.

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Jonathan Allison 7 months, 2 weeks ago

I posted this under the KSU photo gallery after the KSU game, and it applies here as well.

Selden seems to be becoming the emotional leader of this team. He's always the first to celebrate with his teammates and to pump up the crowd. He's the most expressive Jayhawk it would seems.

Also on Black, we keep seeing flashles of what Black can do. He has been looking really really good in the time that he's been able to stay on the floor the past two games. He made that left-handed driving mini-hook look sooo easy. And he was a man amongst boys against KSU. He's gotta find a way to stay on the floor longer. I really want to see him stay out of foul trouble long enough to be a factor in reserve of Embiid.

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Chris Shaw 7 months, 2 weeks ago

Black is in a tough spot, but there is going to be a time where he is needed down the road and when that time comes...he'll be ready. I mean, he goes up against Embiid, Ellis, Traylor, Lucas, and Mickelson everyday in practice. Black is fine.

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Benz Junque 7 months, 2 weeks ago

Ku needs to get those turnovers cleaned up. And I would like to see Selden get back to being a little mroe aggressive. I am not sure who was guarding him most of the night but he didn't seem to be attacking the rim as much. For him, it seems that if he doesn't see one of his first few shots go down then he kind of fades into a secondary role. Maybe I am just not remembering well.

All in all, we'll take it. But they still need to play better to beat Okie State this Saturday.

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Chris Shaw 7 months, 2 weeks ago

You can't have all 5 guys being scorers on every night. Some nights you are going to impact the game in a different light. Tharpe shot the ball well last night and Selden became more a distributor as his shot wasn't falling (1-5 from behind the arc).

When Tharpe didn't shoot well against KSU...Selden picked up the scoring load and Tharpe became more of the distributor as his 9 assists indicated in that game. As long as Selden and Tharpe at the guard positions can make an "impact" in some capacity that's what you need from your guards.

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Aaron Paisley 7 months, 2 weeks ago

Turnovers are a concern, but Selden wasn't needed to be the aggressor last night with Wiggins and Tharpe doing the heavy lifting. I thought Selden played a solid game last night and did what KU needed him to do on offense.

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Benz Junque 7 months, 2 weeks ago

KU wasn't lights out from the floor, shooting 50%. That's good but not insanely hot. They didn't hit a ton of three or a high percentage of the ones they attempted. They didn't shoot great, or often, from the free throw line. ISU led the free throw attempts 34-19 and 6 of KU's attempts came in the last 47 seconds on intentional fouls. They lost the turnover battle by an alarming 24-7. their opponent was not missing any players.

And yet, they were by far the best team on the floor agauinst a Top 10 team and won very comfortably on the road in one of the toughest road environments in the country with fans who have been DYING for their team to get revenge against us and who hate us as a program more than any other. KU is improving right before our eyes and will hopefully only continue to do so. they can still play a LOT better than what we saw last night. Anyone who thinks there is some type of ceiling to what this team can accomplish this year is nuts.

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Tom Gillaspie 7 months, 2 weeks ago

50% shooting on the road (especially at Hilton) is fantastic for any team. For a team this young and inexperienced 50% is huge.

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Taylor Witt 7 months, 2 weeks ago

"As far as rebounder deluxe Wiggins, his 19 boards were most by a Jayhawk since Nick Collison had 19 against Duke in the 2003 NCAAs."

Not quite.

http://statsheet.com/mcb/games/stats/players?season1=2003&season2=2013&conf=&team=kansas&stat=rebounds_total

This is a list of the most rebounds by a KU player in the Bill Self Era. 5 games of 20 boards, including TRob's 21 against North Dakota on New Years Eve 2011.

But Wiggins is still the man!

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Reggie Flenory 7 months, 2 weeks ago

I find it interesting that after a great win all people are talkin about on here is what we didnt do well every team has weaknesses but we are improving wiggins is startimg to assert him self invarious different ways each game not just on the scorimg end naadir is making plays from the point and when he does that we are hard to beat wayne is solid (and drops the prettiest dimes in the league relax people ROCK CHALK

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Erin Troyer 7 months, 2 weeks ago

My gosh...some of you people are just never happy. Those kids put together a win that...if we're honest....we kind of expected not to happen. Yet....here several of you are, picking apart the game. I have to wonder if you even enjoy the games. Seems like we have some chronic "glass half empty" folks posting here.

Lighten up, Francis!

WE WON THE STINKIN' GAME!

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Chris Shaw 7 months, 2 weeks ago

So...you don't understand "How" the game is won or lost and you assume people aren't happy. There is probably another level of the game that you're not grasping.

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Benz Junque 7 months, 2 weeks ago

Far from not enjoying it, we all likely enjoyed it tremendously. I find it fun to continue to look for improvements. It's enjoyable to see these young players growing and improving, trying to reach their goals. It's fun to try to figure out what the team sees as a weakness and what they will be trying to improve so that I can follow along with them and their progress as the season goes on.

Mentally, I need more than just "Did they win?" Breaking down the details is part of what I love about the game and part of what makes KU fans so special. I have moved all around the country and been around a lot of different fanbases and I truly believe that the most unique think about KU fans is their true knowledge and love of the details of the game itself.

Lots of programs have fans that fill the arena and cheer hard. To hear the entire arena cheer for a small item such as grabbing a tough board or diving for a ball is fun and unique and part of the fabric of KU basketball that extends beyond the results.

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Benz Junque 7 months, 2 weeks ago

As for the "some people are never happy"?

“This was one of our better road wins,” Self said. “We’re so fortunate because they missed shots. We defended them well, but they missed shots. We handled the ball miserably (24 turnovers to ISU’s eight). We looked like third graders at times handling the ball.”

We aren't the only one's that see room for improvements. No one here was so harsh as to say they played "like third graders". The coach and the players are happy for the win but likely expect better play. Many of us on here probably feel the same way. Great win, lots of room for improvement.

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Rodney Crain 7 months, 2 weeks ago

Enjoy the games, sure.

I would rather we play well and win by one, then play like we did last night and win. The first way means it was in our control to win. It is mostly skill, we were the better team. The win last night we needed them to shoot extremely poorly to win, lucky. You just cannot depend on luck and expect to win anything meaningful.

With the next two teams coming in we will have to likely play well to win. Since that means improvement I see the comments by most here as searching for what those might be.

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Jonathan Allison 7 months, 2 weeks ago

Reggie and Erin,

What we are seeing is a team that has the potential #1 and #2 overall picks in the upcoming NBA draft and the makings of a potential national champion. This is a team which, if it starts hitting on all cylinders could win out the rest of the entire season. The only thing that this team lacks is the one thing that they get more of with every moment of every game.

In other words, this team is already really, really good, but also has SOO much room to improve. That's why people in this forum are talking about the turnovers, the fouls, and the misses just as much as the hits.

That "P" word contains all of our hopes and all of our frustrations (so far) about this team. Potential.

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Tom Gillaspie 7 months, 2 weeks ago

There were plenty of mistakes last night, as many here have identified. But, this is a team that is still finding it's identity. For me this is one of the most enjoyable, and at times frustrating, teams to watch that Kansas has put on the floor in a long time. So much potential still to be realized. I honestly don't think they know how good they could be - yet. If they figure that out and play accordingly - look out! As Bill Self might say, "God amighty", this is going to be fun. Rock Chalk, 3-0. Get ready for Okie State, we need to be louder than Hilton on Saturday.

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Mike Riches 7 months, 2 weeks ago

This is the eighth consecutive year that Kansas has started 3-0 in the Big 12, but this is the first year in that stretch that they have beaten 3 ranked teams to open up league play (KSU ranked last week and Oklahoma this week). Pretty dang good for a squad that lost all five starters from last year! With OSU and Baylor up next, the schedule only gets tougher...we will need every ounce of energy from fans in AFH.

24 turnovers and a win...what that means to me is this team isn't peaking yet, which is good, I want to see them peak in about two months from now!

The new-hero-every-night theme reminds me an awful lot of the 07-08 team.

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Eric Lee 7 months, 2 weeks ago

First time poster here. Just wanted to say I am absolutely in love with that picture of Naadir Tharpe. Love the intensity in his eyes.

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