Sunday, January 26, 2014

KU youth served in win over TCU

Kansas guard Andrew Wiggins smiles while joking with a game official before a pair of free throws against TCU during the second half on Saturday, Jan. 25, 2014 at Daniel-Meyer Coliseum in Fort Worth, Texas.

Kansas guard Andrew Wiggins smiles while joking with a game official before a pair of free throws against TCU during the second half on Saturday, Jan. 25, 2014 at Daniel-Meyer Coliseum in Fort Worth, Texas.


Kansas University basketball coach Bill Self presented an amazing statistic to staff members after examining the box score following Saturday’s 91-69 victory over TCU at Daniel-Meyer Coliseum in Fort Worth, Texas.

“The oldest kid we had score was a sophomore. We had seven freshmen score 75 out of 91 points, and two sophomores scored 16, and nobody else scored because ‘Naa’ (Naadir Tharpe) didn’t take a shot and Tarik (Black) was hurt,” Self said Sunday.

“I do not ever remember one of our teams being that young on the court. It goes to show how young we are,” added Self, who at one point in the first half had five freshmen on the court at the same time.

Here’s the breakdown of points for the No. 8-ranked Jayhawks, who improved to 6-0 in the Big 12 and 15-4 overall: Freshman Andrew Wiggins scored a career-high 27 points, followed by fellow freshmen Joel Embiid (14), Wayne Selden (12), Landen Lucas (7), Frank Mason (6), Brannen Greene (6) and Conner Frankamp (3). Sophomores Jamari Traylor and Perry Ellis had eight apiece.

“We’re so young it’s crazy,” said red-shirt freshman center Lucas, who hit three of four shots and one of three free throws for his career high in points. He tied a career-high with five rebounds.

“We could easily play five freshmen and a very young team and be successful. That’s good news for the future even with the guys we are bringing in (Cliff Alexander and Kelly Oubre so far in recruiting), how we can all kind of mesh together and have a very good team,” Lucas added.

Lucas on Saturday played in a Big 12 game for the first time.

“It was great. I know what I’m capable of. Coach called my number. I was ready to go,” said Lucas, a 6-foot-10, 240-pounder out of Portland, Ore. “I’m ready whenever he needs me, whatever circumstance it is. Even though I haven’t played at all in the Big 12, I’m still ready whenever he needs me.”

Self was impressed.

“Landen played well. He made the most of his opportunity,” Self said. “Tarik is nicked up right now. Landen has played well in practice the whole time. He deserves to play more. It’s just hard to play five big guys. He gives us more depth, and this certainly gives him confidence.”

Lucas showed off an effective baby hook shot Saturday.

“It’s something I work on a lot. Coach is always talking about going straight to the side. I felt I did it that time. It went in. I’m happy about it,” Lucas said.

Noted Self: “It’s one of his moves. We work on jump hooks every day. That’s something, to be honest, all of our players have in their arsenal. It’s one of his better moves.”

Ankle healing: Senior center Black, who sprained his right ankle in last Monday’s game against Baylor, worked Sunday’s Special Olympics Clinic in Allen Fieldhouse.

“He’s better today,” Self said Sunday. “He got treatment and ran in the pool today. I think there’s a good chance he’ll be able to go Wednesday (vs. Iowa State, 8 p.m., Allen Fieldhouse).”

The distributor: Junior guard Tharpe had no shot attempts, no free throw attempts, four assists, one steal, no turnovers and three fouls in 20 minutes at TCU.

“I think Naadir has been great,” Self said. “He won national player of the week 10 days ago. Tonight he wasn’t a factor, but Naadir has played very well.”


Steve Zimmerman 6 years, 2 months ago

Naadir is still a leader of this team. He doesn't necessarily shoot knowing he can rely on others doing so. That's a true leadership character, I don't care what anybody says about his performance that day.

I'm very happy to see how Lucas responded and made the best out of his minutes. He looked very skillful in rebounding and establishing position. That hook-shot is sick. I think it's time HCBS start utilizing Lucas more. This kid is awesome in character, too. Keep it up, Lucas!

Bryce Landon 6 years, 2 months ago

It's easy not to say anything about his performance because we won by 22. I love that he had four assists to no turnovers.

Suzi Marshall 6 years, 2 months ago

Such a young team probably says our 2015 recruiting class will be terrible, relatively to the past few years.

Ashwin Rao 6 years, 2 months ago

Why do you say that? We will need a 1 in 2015, plus I see at least one of our current guys leaving (along with Cliff) next year, so that will open up some slots.

Ian Emerson 6 years, 2 months ago

Haha I believe that comment by Suzi had a hint of sarcasm ;)

Robert Brock 6 years, 2 months ago

At a glance, the Class of 2015 doesn't look like it provides difference-makers at the PG spot.

Elias Dunlavy 6 years, 2 months ago

I look for Mason and Frankamp to be running the show come 2015

Suzi Marshall 6 years, 2 months ago

I doubt we will have that many scolarships to give, 1-3. Additionally, top ranked kids want to play right away. What HS junior do you project, at any position that can take PT away from the guys we are likely to have aound, i.e. Mason, Frankamp, Greene, White, Michelson, Lucas, Traylor, ...and maybe Oubre and Alexander. Do you think a high 5 star would go to Kansas with subtantial bench time as the likely first year.

Allen Shepard 6 years, 2 months ago

Workin' on the reverse jinx early, i see.

Tony Bandle 6 years, 2 months ago

Gosh, I miss stupidmichael...he was the best worrier this site ever had!! :)

Jonathan Allison 6 years, 2 months ago

stupidmichael is still a regular commenter here under the alias of "Joe Joseph". But don't tell anyone, because I don't think that he wants them to know that his real name is stupidmichael.

Bryce Landon 6 years, 2 months ago

He still shows up, but only on game days.

Titus Canby 6 years, 2 months ago

Speaking of worrying, how many of you can't watch the game live? Unless I'm at the game where everyone is yelling as loud as I am, I have to wait for the replay.

Len Shaffer 6 years, 2 months ago

I can't watch it live, but that's just so I can forward through the commercials.

Tony Bandle 6 years, 2 months ago


1] I can't imagine what it would be like to go to a school with no true basketball tradition, with a record of NCAA failure and no National Championships or even Final Four appearanaces......OH WAIT, 100 miles to the west of St.Louis in Columbia!!!! LOL!!!

2] Landon Lucas will have a resume of scrimmaging against Jeff Withey, Perry Ellis, Tarik Black, Joel Embiid, Jamari Traylor and, next season, Cliff a sophomore!! Has anyone in America faced such a daunting line-up as a reserve??/

3] My prediction for the starting line up for 2015-16 season: Lucas, Mason, Frankamp, Greene and a AOD to be named later, with Traylor first off the bench.

4] I'm guessing that despite both schools being tied for second in the league race, most of us are cheering for the Sooners to hand the Oakies their third league loss.

5] "Trap Games" for Kansas - @ Texas, @ OSU, @ Baylor, ISU in Allen.

6] At 6-0 with sweeps coming up against WV and TT, that will put us at 10-0. Figure victories against ISU, TX, TCU and OKLA in Allen, that puts us at 14-0 and splitting road games at TX, KSU, OSU and Baylor equals 16 - 2 and our 10th straight title!!!

Mark Lindrud 6 years, 2 months ago

I will switch that starting lineup to Lucas, Mason, Greene, Traylor starting with a OAD and Frankamp coming off the bench.

Elias Dunlavy 6 years, 2 months ago

I definitely don't think Cliff is a lock One and Done next year. He wont be able to Physically dominate the way he did in high school and He will need to extend his range past the free throw line. Also needs more work with his back to the basket....His hustle and energy is contagious and cant wait to see him in KU blue. RCJH

Erich Hartmann 6 years, 2 months ago

They say Cliff Alexander might be about as ready to play as "sophomore version" of Thomas Robinson. I think one of his high school games he monstered for 37pts, 20rbnds, 12 dunks...Another tough big who wants to play for Bill Self!

Anyone else see Karviar Shephard of TCU and think that with Embiid we got the better end of that deal? Cannot say enough about Joel Embiid. If Embiid stays next season, may the gods help the opposition...

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