Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Jayhawks win Maui Invitational

No. 5 KU rallies in 2nd half to beat No. 19 Vandy

Kansas guard Wayne Selden Jr. (1) pulls up for a three against Vanderbilt center Josh Henderson (40) during the first half, Wednesday, Nov. 25, 2015 at Lahaina Civic Center in Lahaina, Hawaii.

Kansas guard Wayne Selden Jr. (1) pulls up for a three against Vanderbilt center Josh Henderson (40) during the first half, Wednesday, Nov. 25, 2015 at Lahaina Civic Center in Lahaina, Hawaii.


— Kansas University coach Bill Self is finally a Maui Invitational champion.

Self and the No. 5 Jayhawks brought home the coach's first Maui title in four tries — he previously was 0-for-2 at KU — with a 70-63 victory over No. 19 Vanderbilt on Wednesday night at Lahaina Civic Center.

KU junior Wayne Selden Jr. carried most of the load for the Jayhawks (4-1), scoring 25 points — matching his carer high — on 8-for-11 shooting and leading the Jayhawks through some of their toughest times against a team that some college basketball analysts are calling a Final Four contender.

Vandy (5-1) jumped out to a 16-6 lead early in the game and used its size to frustrate the Jayhawks. But once Kansas got running and Selden started hitting, the title game looked an awful lot like the two games that came before it in Maui.

Here’s a quick look back at some of the action:

• The game turned when: Kansas stormed out of the locker room after halftime and turned a four-point deficit into a nine-point lead with a 27-14 run during the second half's first 10 minutes. As was the case in the opening half with KU's run to get back into it, Selden led the way on the offensive end during this run, as well, scoring eight of his team-high 25 points during the stretch.

• Offensive highlight: With just under a minute left to play in the first half, Landen Lucas followed up a Jamari Traylor miss in the post with a monster slam that pulled Kansas within four at the break. Lucas had an up-and-down first half, but that bucket was big both for him and for KU's ability to show the Commodores that they have some beef inside, as well. As for the best of KU's many three-pointers, that one came from Selden, whose wide-open knock-down in front of the KU bench pushed the lead to 51-42 and featured Selden quickly celebrating with his teammates on the bench after the shot fell through.

• Defensive highlight: As predicted, Vanderbilt tried to pound the ball inside early and often and on one of their best looks in the early going, KU's Selden recovered in time to reject what looked to be a sure layup from Luke Kornet.

• Key stat: Despite giving up some serious size inside to Vandy's big front line, KU out-rebounded the Commodores 39-32 to help secure the victory. Vanderbilt had out-rebounded every opponent it had played thus far this season until Wednesday night.

• Up next: After spending Thanksgiving on the islands, the Jayhawks return home for a Tuesday game against Loyola (Maryland) at 7 p.m. The game will mark the first KU game in the career of freshman forward Cheick Diallo, who was cleared to play in that game by the NCAA on Wednesday.

— See what people were saying about the Maui Invitational title game (and Cheick Diallo) during’s live coverage

More news and notes from Kansas vs. Vanderbilt

By the Numbers: Kansas 70, Vanderbilt 63

By the Numbers: Kansas 70, Vanderbilt 63


Bryce Landon 4 years, 11 months ago

What were those uniforms KU was wearing? They looked more like practice jerseys than the usual home whites.

Steve Zimmerman 4 years, 11 months ago

Maaan... Selden's superb performance really makes up for Traylor & Ellis bad plays. Congrats to KU team & coaching staff! This is a great win, without Diallo. Tough tough one.

Jack Hoff 4 years, 11 months ago

Hey does anyone remember when Bill Self was a idiot coach who was losing control of his team. Couldn't recruit anymore and lacked ability to adjust during games like he did tonight against Vanderbilt. Well you should cuz that's been the case on here for a week. KU lost to a good MSU team early in the season and I'm not speaking about everyone on here but fans on here need to learn to stop overreacting after losses. I'll be the first to tell you they are gonna lose again this season... Shocker! But don't be a jerk and start saying nonsense like fire the coach and trashing players cuz they had a bad game. Remember when graham and mason lacked ability to play well against elite and tall teams... Well look what we have today. Remember after MSU when graham has no business playing extended minutes. It's a long season and there will be ups and downs. Enjoy the process. It's okay to be frustrated and disappointed after a loss. But it's not okay to get nasty with comments and start trashing players and coaches. With that being said. Great win today by the players and self did a fine job adjusting in the second half. Rock chalk! Keep rolling boys! Glad Diallo is cleared also!

Steve Zimmerman 4 years, 11 months ago

Well said, Mr. Hoff. But without fans complaints/disappointment, things might've been different. Coaching staff has ears, too. They might incorporate ideas from fans/outside and make adjustment to their strategy. It can be seen in the way we attacked the basket tonight, as you said. It's a good progress.

Bill Meyer 4 years, 11 months ago

Seriously??!! You actually think he listens to this stuff? He knows exactly what he is doing. He doesn't need the armchair coaches telling him what he should do. I think his record speaks for itself!

James Smith 4 years, 11 months ago

Bill what record? Losing to the killer b's or the loses to VCU, Northern Iowa or Wichita State? Yeah he knows what he is doing! Good to see what we have coming in for next year. Life is good.

Jared Reeves 4 years, 11 months ago

Jack, HCBS may not be an idiot, but sometimes he has idiotic game plans, like he did tonight in the first half.

Bryce Landon 4 years, 11 months ago

Or like he did in the 19 games he lost the last two seasons.

Rodney Crain 4 years, 11 months ago

Jack recruiting is still up for discussion.

I would not flap my little Jayhawk wings over one quality Half which resulted in a win either. First half was a swing and a miss without Selden almost by himself keeping us close on offense.

ps- you cant say its okay to be frustrated and dissappointed after a loss after you said don't be a jerk by saying nonsense. Which is it, its ok to be upset just dont say anything or its ok to do both?

We got beat off screens this game, not because anyone could not stay with taller guards. You are watching the games right?

To recap, we had one very good half (don't think we showed much in the game other than we can adjust when given a half to), we still have not signed anyone in the top 100, when they were in the top 100. We did not see Mason or Graham guard taller talented guards, and it is still ok to get upset with your team when they do not play well, as per the universe. So...... your post? Not sure you made a point till the very last sentence - I agree I am glad Diallo is cleared also!

James Smith 4 years, 11 months ago

Jack we are still here and yes it was a good week for the team and good to hear about Cheick.

The start of the game was more of the same as we continued to try taking it into the trees with no luck. Glad to see that he or someone realized that we better start hitting from the outside. Very happy for Seldon. He is trying so hard. Good to see Svi get some good minutes too.

Hunter is still not playing enough for some reason. Plus recruiting is still a sore subject. But again a good week for the Hawks and looking forward to Tuesday.

Rock Chalk!!

Jack Hoff 4 years, 11 months ago

Also Selden is a stud.. Looks like the Selden we saw in Korea! Imagine what happens when we throw Brannen back in the mix and the motor of Chieck! Watch out, this could be a special ride!

Rodney Crain 4 years, 11 months ago

Korea Selden, yes last night he was the best player on the floor. The other #1 who looks like him but it tentative, hopefully that one was just injured and he is better now. Lets see him do it a few games in a row and I will join in.

Brannen, seriously? You understand what a doghouse means in sports right? Showing up the coach is not the way to get on the court for long stretches of time.

Jared Reeves 4 years, 11 months ago

Great win! I loved how we play the second half, but the first half was insanely bad.

The first half was exactly what I predicted. Why does HCBS do the same thing over and over and expect a different result? KU and Perry Ellis can't play against height--at least not when HCBS has the same crappy game plan. The first half we drove the ball to score (and got the ball blocked about 6 times and had about 9 turnovers, if memory serves). We also tried to get the ball to the bigs near the basket (who have shown throughout their entire career that they can't score over length.) We shot 32% for the half, scored 26 points, got 1 free throw, with only Selden keeping us in the game. HCBS played right into Vandy's strengths. It was idiotic. With so many turnovers, and blocked shots we should have given up more points, but Vandy missed a ton of open 3 pointers. It looked like HCBS was trying to lose the game.

The second half was great. Self FINALLY made the adjustment. We played to our strengths on offense. We drove the ball to pass, and brought Ellis away from the basket. We shot 62.5%, scored 44 points (which also includes 10 of 21 free throws).

Our defense was about the same both halves. Vandy missed a lot of open shots, but our defense was average. Mason and Ellis had a tough game. Mason looked bad on defense tonight. Every win is great, but I just wish HCBS didn't try to do the same thing over and over and expect a different result. That is insane.

Bryce Landon 4 years, 10 months ago

The reason I'm giving you a "like" is because of your final two sentences: "Every win is great, but I just wish HCBS didn't try to do the same thing over and over and expect a different result. That is insane."

James Smith 4 years, 10 months ago

Bryce too ban that Jack Hoff is so blind and cannot see or understand the frustrations that we deal with almost every game with Bill Self.

Jim Johnson 4 years, 10 months ago

I guess I'll never get over how cheap the NCAA Championship trophy looks compared to most other trophies. Those of you who think we should keep quiet on how the team plays are wrong. If you think this win is so great you better go back and look at the end of that game. They would have gotten beat again if playing a team the caliper of their last loss. They have, for some reason, a way of not being able to finish games and they did not finish that game good at all. It is going to be a problem and will be a big problem later on if HCBS doesn't find a way to finish teams off. This has been a problem for some time now and it is very frustrating.

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