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Saturday, January 25, 2014

KU men return to TCU mindful of last year’s loss

TCU fans flood the floor of the Daniel-Meyer Coliseum after the Horned Frogs defeated the Jayhawks, 62-55, Wednesday at TCU in Fort Worth, Texas.

TCU fans flood the floor of the Daniel-Meyer Coliseum after the Horned Frogs defeated the Jayhawks, 62-55, Wednesday at TCU in Fort Worth, Texas.

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Kansas University’s fifth-ranked basketball team trailed the Big 12’s last-place squad, TCU, 20-6 with four minutes left in the first half of last year’s head-scratcher of a game at sold-out Daniel-Meyer Coliseum.

Odds appeared slim the Jayhawks would even hit double figures by the 20-minute mark.

“With the talent level you guys (Jayhawks) had last season, obviously I’m not sure how that takes place,” said KU senior power forward Tarik Black, who watched in amazement this week as KU coach Bill Self played excerpts from that 62-55 loss. Black, of course, was on Memphis’ team last season and not a part of the freakish contest in Fort Worth.

The two teams play again at 8 tonight in TCU’s campus coliseum.

“It was a crazy first half, a ridiculous first half,” Black added of a half in which KU ultimately finished with 13 points to TCU’s 22.

This happened against a TCU team that, in opening league play 0-8, had lost seven games by double figures. What’s more, TCU entered the contest 0-20 in all-time matchups against top-five ranked teams, including an 0-5 mark at home. KU entered 7-1 in conference play.

“Obviously our defense wasn’t that bad. You think you hold a team to 22 in a half, you’d be at least in the game,” Self said, in recalling the bleak contest in which he made national news for saying “it’s the worst team Kansas has ever put on the floor since Dr. Naismith was here. I think he had some bad teams when he lost to Topeka YMCA in his first couple years.”

KU wasn’t in the game, Self said, because “when you go 3-of-23 from the field and have 11 turnovers, that’s just a poor, poor, poor half of basketball. They deserve credit because they caused it, but still, yes, we can play a lot better than that. It may be some motivation, but I don’t know if it’s going to be a determining factor if we’re ready to play or not (tonight).”

Actually, as much as last year’s TCU game has been rehashed since that Feb. 6 evening, it probably will serve as motivation for the eighth-ranked Jayhawks (14-4 overall, 5-0 Big 12) against the Horned Frogs (9-9, 0-6).

“We have to go down there and change things and do things differently or we’ll have the same outcome,” Black said. “This is an underrated TCU team.”

TCU, which defeated Tulsa twice, Washington State and Mississippi State in a promising nonconference season, is 0-6 in Big 12 play after its 77-69 loss Wednesday at No. 25 Oklahoma

“In conference play they’ve played better than their record even though they could have won that game in Norman. What was it, a tie game with about six minutes left and a four-point game and they missed like three free throws in a row and they had a chance in the last two minutes?” Self said. “So that could have been a great road win for them, and we know OU can score easy. They (Frogs) are much better, good, sound defensively, and when they make shots, they’re definitely a dangerous team. And Anderson is obviously having a very good year.”

TCU junior point guard Kyan Anderson averages a team-leading 15.1 points per game with 87 assists (4.6 per game) and 27 steals. Junior forward Amric Fields averages 13.8 points and 5.5 rebounds. Senior guard Jarvis Ray averages 9.6 ppg and 4.0 rebounds.

Freshman guard Brandon Parrish averages 10.2 ppg with 24 threes. Freshman center Karviar Shepherd, who was recruited by KU, starts and averages 8.4 ppg and 7.6 boards with 2.1 blocks.

Obviously, KU doesn’t want to stumble at TCU again this season. Up to half the arena figures to again be full of KU fans.

“I think our guys enjoy playing in front of energy,” Self said. “We’re spoiled here by our fans and what we play in front of every day, and then we go on the road and we play in front of a 90-percent-filled building or 95-percent-filled building, and we think, ‘Dang, where is everybody?’ and the home team is thinking, ‘This is the best crowd we’ve had all year.’ We have to be cautious about that (if it’s not full). You’ve got a job to do, go do your job. The building will be full at TCU, I would think. Last year it was full (record crowd of 7,412).

“NCAA Tournament games, very rarely are they full. Unless you play in Kansas City, which was nice. But for the most part, these are the type of environments that are the environments you have to play well in to advance.”

Tarik Black questionable: KU big man Black is listed as questionable for today’s game. Black, who sprained his ankle in Monday’s win over Baylor, practiced half-speed on Friday, Self indicated.

TCU notes: The Horned Frogs are coached by Trent Johnson, who is 20-30 in his second season at TCU and 246-215 in his 15th season overall. TCU is 5-4 at Daniel-Meyer Coliseum this season. TCU averages 66.1 points per game and allows 68.6. TCU is getting outrebounded by 5.3 boards per game, yet winning the turnover margin with a +1.7 average. The Horned Frogs force 6.1 steals per game. TCU’s 71.9 free throw percentage is third in the league.

The series: KU leads the all-time series 5-1. KU beat TCU, 68-64, in a 1952 NCAA Midwest Regional game in Municipal Auditorium in Kansas City, Mo. ... Self is 9-4 all-time against TCU, including 3-1 while at KU. Johnson is 2-1 against KU, 1-1 while at TCU. In Self’s first season at KU, Johnson’s Stanford team defeated the Jayhawks, 64-58, on Dec. 6, 2003, in Anaheim, Calif., in the Wooden Classic.

Tisdale midseason list: KU’s Joel Embiid and Andrew Wiggins have been named to the Wayman Tisdale Award Midseason List for the outstanding freshman of the year, the USBWA announced Friday. Others on the list: Tyler Ennis, Syracuse; Aaron Gordon, Arizona; Jordan Mickey, LSU; Jabari Parker, Duke; Julius Randle, Kentucky; Noah Vonleh, Indiana; and James Young, Kentucky. Last season, Kansas’ Ben McLemore was named to the Wayman Tisdale Award Midseason List. McLemore was also a finalist for the award and was later named USBWA All-America Second Team.

More on Joel, pros: KU frosh Joel Embiid remains undecided on whether he’ll take his talents to the NBA next season. He’s projected as the No. 1 pick in the 2014 Draft by draftexpress.com and nbadraft.net and is Chad Ford’s projected No. 1 on Ford’s ESPN Big Board.

“When I see those guys (NBA centers), man, they’re really big,” Embiid told the Associated Press. “Things could change, but I love college. I’m having so much fun on campus, with my teammates. When we play, we have 16,000 people. It’s crazy. It’s not the same thing when you’re in the league. So I don’t know. We’ll just have to see.”

Quite a dunk: A picture of Embiid dunking on Oklahoma State’s Marcus Smart appeared on Embiid’s instagram page and was tweeted by the KU star. “Not very SMART to jump on that one” read the caption. Some have speculated that the photo figures to catch Smart’s attention heading into KU’s rematch against Oklahoma State on March 1 in Stillwater, Okla.

Comments

Bryce Landon 5 years ago

I still think it was totally classless of Self to throw his team under the bus when he should have admitted that it was his fault because he didn't have his team ready to play. Please, Coach, if KU craps its pants again at TCU, there is no way in hell that you can't blame yourself.

Bryce Landon 5 years ago

Oh, and by the way, Trent Johnson was not the coach at Stanford in 2003-04. Mike Montgomery was at Stanford at the time. But Johnson was at Nevada, and he did coach Nevada to an upset of Kansas that season.

Suzi Marshall 5 years ago

Yes Smart has seen the photo and Stilwater, like Ames was suppose to be, will be ablaze with emotions for the Hawks.

Of the 7,412 that attended last year's TCU game, easily more than half were vocal supportive Kansas fans. I talked with theTCU ticket manager around 10 am the day the KU tickets went on sale. He reported a wild moring with "everyone wants KU tickets" and "Kansas fans will again be well represented."

Bryce, Self's post-game critique from last year's game was spot on regarding the first half. His critism inclueded himself and the rest of the coaching staff for the manner inwhich the team was prepared. Even this year he continues to shoulder much of the blame for making too much a big deal over the home loss to OSU in the previous game.

After a quick 18, we will be on our way. Looking forward to see everyone at the pregame: Bar Louis, 2873 W. 7th St, Fort Worth. Contqct Emily Akers (emele326@gmail.com, '09) or Tyler Dall (tylerdall@gmail.com, '07) if you can make it to the area.

"Ahh Kirk, revenge is a dish best served cold," Khan (Ricardo Montalban) "Wrath of Khan"

RCJH

Jack Wilson 5 years ago

My view is that coach Self's unprofessional, public post-game meltdown after Oklahoma St., led directly to the TCU loss. None of us had ever heard coach Self like that. In particular, he took a hard working senior and threw him squarely under the bus. It was way ugly. There was the "babies" comment. The "beasted" comment. It was not pretty.

I think this affected the psyche of the team, beat them down, and this resulted in the TCU loss. It is the most plausible explanation for an otherwise inexplicable loss.

That being said, what Self said may have actually been true. But it was done publicly and it unnecessarily humiliated a key contributor and team leader (EJ). He should not have taken most of his post game comments public. I was listening to the comments live on the radio at the time, and it was clear to me that Self was out of control and speaking out of anger and frustration -- uncharacteristically so. It was not a "gauged" outburst.

The content was classic coach Self. Blame everyone but himself. He usually makes an obligatory remark about "coaching" (he referenced being better at "teaching it" after OSU). But his clear focus was not on him, but all of the shortcomings of his team and the players.

The reality was vs. OSU was that we just lost. It was not the end of the world. It was a poor game, and some guys didn't play well. Coach Self made it much worse by his comments and reactions.

At the time, I contrasted Self's reactions to Bill Snyder's reactions after their football loss to Baylor -- a loss of much, much greater consequence (eliminating them from the national title hunt when that win, and a win in their final game, would place them in the title game). In that game, his senior QB played very poorly and one could argue, like EJ, he cost KSU the game.

Here's what Snyder said:

"They took the fight to us," Snyder says. "And I didn't have them well enough prepared for it.We just didn't handle it as well as we should have, and that's my responsibility."

He made no negative comments about Klein. He focused everything right back on him.

But we all know that Snyder probably didn't cost them that game. His players just played poorly. Same as we did against OSU last season.

KSU came out the next game and beat Texas to win the Big 12.

I caught some flack for the Snyder comparison last season. But one of the greatest college basketball coaches of all time can surely learn a few things from one of the greatest college football coaches of all time. Both of them, as with all coaches, can always improve at what they do. I will bet you that coach Self regrets his post game meltdown after OSU. And I'll bet you that it never happens again.

Suzi Marshall 5 years ago

I think we all flinched upon hearing Self's comments. The contrast to Snyder, an iconic State of Kansas symbol, is a good one because it shows how an older, more matured leader manages challenging circumstances. There is a reason KSU honors his name on the stadium.

Self is an emotional, relatively open & honest guy who let overwhelming displeasure get the best of him in that particular moment. However, it was true that "Marcus Smart was a man amongst boys." You do know he was also showing his frustration in not landing Smart, who he wanted as much as any kid he ever recruited. I’m happiest that is was not me or 99.99999% of the other Kansas fans were not required to address the public in that situation.

Self is the first to admit that and you can see his personal growth in the manner in which he handled the SDSU loss this year. His “Topeka YMCA” reference was an all-time classic.

Erich Hartmann 5 years ago

Self normally, heck almost always calm and collected on the mic...so to have him display emotion on rare occasion is acceptable. Its NOT a trend. NOT a habit. And better believe the microphone version was not the locker-room-only version...

HEM, I am equivocal on this point, as Self clearly is more of an old-ball type fire/brimstone coach--that's just who he is, and who he will remain. And we have known this for about 8yrs (ever since he pulled out all the stops coaching his own recruits, instead of the slight kid-gloves version that Miles/Langford/Simien received...). Equivocal I say because, like Suzi said, we were all uncomfortable when we heard Self's post-TCU blast, but then such a loss made us way more uncomfortable. And Marcus Smart was a man amongst boys.

But see how the future is always bright with Self: he went out and found his own Marcus Smart (Selden), and a whole helluva lot in addition. Whole new team, and we are in the top10 again. A guy is allowed to be human and have his personality. I will take the imperfect bits-of-Self along with the TON of positives he brings as a coach.

Finally, try the shoe on yourself: your high-elite-major royalty program just lost to a dangerous conf foe on your own home court due to "soft" play (see tape), AND then you go drop an egg in the conf. doormat's pretend gym. Back to back. I'd say the kids deserved to hear the dark side of when you "do not perform" (at a royalty school). Care to guess what kind of chewing Roy has been doing over at UNC right. about. now...? (the same). You should see the UNC boards.

Bradly Moore 5 years ago

If you are going to give that rotten old man, credit over Bill F%#}ing Self, you need to please stop being a KU fan. The crypt keeper isn't in the same galaxy as Self. That is just ridiculous! I can't believe a Kansas Jayhawks fan would say that. If you want to root for that cow college keep it to yourself. How many national championships has that septuagenarian won? NONE! How many will he win? ZERO! Self will win multiple NATIONAL championships!! Please go practice your animal husbandry somewhere else.

Jack Wilson 5 years ago

Many times in life I've crossed paths with folks like you. Let's just say you fit the mold. If you seriously cannot appreciate what Bill Snyder has done, and the type of man that he is, you are not worth having any sort of discussion with. And your response is the type that is embarrassing for many KU fans, including me. There is always a "lowest common denominator." Unfortunately, our lowest common denominators come off like MU fans.

To your insults of Snyder, if you could rewind to 1989, I'm quite sure you'd suggest that KU hire Snyder before KSU got their hands on him.

Kent Richardson 5 years ago

Snyder is like Harry S and Self is like Dwight D.

Erich Hartmann 5 years ago

Bradly: As a KU alum, yes I hate losing to Snyder and KState in general, mostly because they hate KU like we used to hate Mizzoo. But I will give credit to Snyder simply for what he has done with their ftball program. Rest assured that east coast or west coast very few people have heard of Kansas State nor have any inkling of what their colors or logo is. My issue with Snyder, who does so well with what talent he gets, is precisely that: why cant he get better talent like OU and TX and Nebr? He isnt top tier to me because he doesnt recruit as well as other bigtime coaches.

Jack: We may not know how rough some KSU people may have treated Bradly, hence his venom. I also know from several people first-hand that Bill Snyder carries a passionate hate for KU. So while I may agree with how great a job he has done for KSU, I absolutely will not go out of my way to defend him. How pathetic would we be to defend somebody that hates our guts. I wont slam him, nor will I defend him. I just want Weis/Campo/Reagan to BEAT purple. That's all our focus should be. Period.

RCJH

Scott Yessen 5 years ago

I have always wished HCBS would handle his post game interviews better. No matter how we play, great or poor, he always has something negative to say. For example, after the ISU game, he was asked about the play of Selden. He said Selden has been the best player in the big 12, aside from maybe Kane. We all know that those games against OU and ISU were exactly what Selden needed to get his confidence up. It would have been nice, in my opinion, if he would have just gave Selden the nod there and not mentioned Kane at all. Let Selden hear his coach give him ALL the credit.

Aaron Paisley 5 years ago

95% of Bill Self's press conferences are just fine. Bill Self is also not a coach that's ever going to be completely satisfied with a every aspect of a player's game or the team's game because there is always something that can be improved and he will make that known to motivate his team. The purpose of the comment you bring up about Self saying (at the time) that Selden had been the best player in the Big 12 to that point except for Kane was to keep Selden motivated to keep improving and to Self wrong. It was personal challenge to Selden and Self's post game and mid week press conferences are one his favorite tools to motivate an individual player and it usually works.

Alex Staley 5 years ago

Wow, this has quickly devolved into a complain about Bill Self forum. Are you all serious? Until we start having losing seasons, how much room does anyone really have to criticize how he handles his players' egos? He knows each player far better than we do which allows him to make much more educated judgments about what kind of support they need.

This is really odd for these boards...

Bryce Landon 5 years ago

Well, if he didn't have so many questionable losses and was a little more willing to accept his share of the blame for those losses, there might not be reason to complain.

Jack Wilson 5 years ago

Alex: And now we hear from the "Self is God" camp. If you deny that he's God, then it must be a cult. Crimson and blue kool-aid anyone?

It is interesting to observe this phenomenon. It literally takes an otherwise rational human being, removes their ability to think critically, and installs a mindset that adopts any of coach Self's decisions as the definition of perfection.

The result? A mindless cheerleader -- skirt, pom-poms, the whole get-up.

It seems a bit more productive, actually, to think for yourself. When you do that, you in fact permit yourself to learn about the game.

Free your mind.

Suzi Marshall 5 years ago

One should never be considered in the “Self is God” camp.

I suggest the "Self is demigod" akin to Perseus or Odysseus. They both were known for cunning skills and regretted some things they said. Recall how Poseidon took exceptions to both of their rhetoric and actions.

Kent Richardson 5 years ago

Suzi, are you the poster from down Houston way? If so, what about this Isiah Taylor playing for Texas, guard scores 27 and doesn't even attempt a three?

Suzi Marshall 5 years ago

Yes I am. UT is playing well. We are all heading over to Austin fomr the weekend for the game, followed by a couple of days in the Hill Country before and going up to Waco. I love it when the Hawks are on the Texas circuit.

Alex Staley 5 years ago

lol Wow the arrogance in this post is astounding to me. This is beneath you HEM. So you don't lose sleep tonight, just know that I am certainly more than capable of thinking for myself. But guess what? I have "thought" and I happen to disagree with you. My point of view is supported by an 84% win pct over his career. 9 straight Big XII championships, 1 national title. Obviously, I don't think you would question his resume, which is why I am surprised that you are so condescending to someone who takes that into consideration when they form an opinion about his coaching methods.

So my point is this: why should he change the way he motivates his players? He knows them better than we do. He knows what each individual needs better than we do. These are college men (argue all you want about their emotional ages or some such excuse) but these are guys that can handle some ringing ears every now and then.

Alex Wishart 5 years ago

Most of you are complaining about Bill Self's post game antics and his ability to find the negative after every game. I would argue that these are the characteristics that make him so great. You don't win the league every year by letting your team get away with subpar or poor performances. You don't send guys to the NBA by setting a low bar in practice or games. To be great at something you might just have to be a dick sometimes. Nobody likes hearing that but it's true in a lot of cases. Bill Self is obviously a great man (he gets major props in senior speeches and has charitable foundations) but that doesn't mean he has to be "nice" all the time. Don't project your mean boss or your overbearing wife on Bill. He deserves more credit than most of you are offering.

Titus Canby 5 years ago

To quote our old friend and board rat "100": "Just beat TCU."

Creighton Coover 5 years ago

Jack Wilson is clearly a K-State fan trying to get under our skin. It would serve all of us TRUE KU fans well to ignore any future comments he makes.

Aaron Paisley 5 years ago

If you take the KU-KSU rivalry so seriously that you can't take a step back and have respect for what Bill Snyder has accomplished there, then you need professional help. That said, having respect for what he has accomplished and liking what he has accomplished are two different things and it is absolutely possible to respect what the man has accomplished without liking what he as accomplished. Jack is as true a KU fan as there is, but he is also capable of being rational when it comes to KU basketball, unlike many people on here. I don't always agree with his opinions on everything related to KU basketball, but I respect his opinion and don't belittle him or his opinion even if I disagree with it.

Brad Farha 5 years ago

Could not be further from the truth. Jack Wilson (a.k.a.high elite major before they started putting real names with posts) is a chat board legend on this site. He's been around forever, and is an ardent KU fan. I rarely post, but had to jump in to correct this. If you don't believe, just look at his history of comments and you'll see the truth.

Erich Hartmann 5 years ago

Summary: HEM is a KU guy, not a troll. He actually cares enough to question things, for sake of discussion, that most KU people wouldnt venture to question. Move on people...

Self is Self, and no one will change his coaching style or philosophy. Why should he, it works. Look, any Div1 team can blow a lead and lose a hard fought game, and we've had our share (OSU in AFH, MichSt x last 2 mtgs, Mich in tourney, etc...), but the TCU loss was an absolute stunner. Allow Self his moment. And, maybe he really felt his boys needed to take some heat??? God knows these boards were full of way worse comments about the team than anything Self could say publicly. And just remember: the locker-room version was likely Self's worst ever, so Im just thankful I didnt have to witness or hear that. You dont come to play for K.A.N.S.A.S. without having pressure, and having to suffer some repercussions. No different than those kids that play for UNC or KY. Reality is you just dont lose to a school like TCU. Your coach oughtta be pissed.

Glen Miller 5 years ago

OK, I have a bone to pick here..... So Self was critical of his players. Do we know him to be any other way. Coach Self has always and will always tell it like it is. He is human, just as we are. He loves these players as his own and wants to see them excel and perform. He is always quick to praise them when they do good. He is also not afraid to question their focus when they don't. In this day and age of one and dones and babied players. I honestly believe the reason we are able to bring in top talent and win 30 games a year is directly correlated to his, his staffs and his players accountability for one another and the public forum in which he displays it. I think Self tells his players and future recruits that wins and playing time are earned and that at Kansas we expect 100% and nothing less from our team. The players seemed to be saying look at us when that slide happened. Against OSU we were out worked, out hustled and out coached. They just "showed up" for the TCU game and Self let them know that won't fly. As a player I would respect a coach that pushes me to be the best I can be. Some of you took his critisism out of context as an attack. I took it as a father figure letting his kids know that he was disappointed. We had 4 Senior starters on that team. There is no way we should have let that happen at TCU. No excuse for the way we played. His JOB is to mold these kids into men. And in my opinion he does a pretty darn good job of that. So I will not worry about a rant of two amongst the loads of praise he continually gives these kids and even players on other teams.

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