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Saturday, February 6, 2016

Keegan

Tom Keegan: Perry Ellis a cordial, yet lethal, visitor

Kansas forward Perry Ellis (34) bangs inside for a bucket against TCU forward JD Miller (15) and forward Vladimir Brodziansky (10) during the second half, Saturday, Feb. 6, 2016 at Schollmaier Arena in Forth Worth, Texas.

Kansas forward Perry Ellis (34) bangs inside for a bucket against TCU forward JD Miller (15) and forward Vladimir Brodziansky (10) during the second half, Saturday, Feb. 6, 2016 at Schollmaier Arena in Forth Worth, Texas.

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— Finally, thousands of people across Texas and Oklahoma, West Virginia and Iowa are getting their wish this winter. They take solace in the knowledge that Kansas University senior Perry Ellis never again will step into their houses.

Oh, he's a polite guest. Never does anything to show up the opposition or call attention to himself, but he's just so difficult to keep from doing what he wants to do, from acting as if he's playing in his own house.

Working toward first-team All-Big 12 honors, Ellis again stood out for Kansas, totaling 23 points, 10 rebounds, three assists and two blocked shots in the Jayhawks’ 75-56 victory at TCU.

On a day that Jamari Traylor took more rebounds off the offensive glass (five) than any Horned Frog had at that end of the floor, a day Devonté Graham juiced teammates with floor burns and net burns, Ellis remained the focal point of the opposition's defense and the main source of frustration for the losing team.

Ellis left an impression on the Horned Frogs in an area that doesn't get discussed as often as most of his other winning traits.

Asked what made Ellis so tough, TCU's Brandon Parrish said, "I think his strength more so than anything. He might not look like the strongest guy, but I think pound-for-pound he can bang with anybody. He's relentless on the offensive glass. If he's going to miss he's going to jump right back up and try to rebound it. And he's real quick off his feet."

Ellis made 11 of 14 shots and misfired both of his three-point shots. He rebounded his only miss inside the arc.

"Ellis was really dominant in the paint," Parrish said. "I feel like we almost couldn't stop him. He drove them today."

TCU coach Trent Johnson talked about more than Ellis' fancy footwork and soft shooting touch, as well.

"The upperclassmen in this league have really improved," Johnson said. "Yeah, they're all skilled, but they're tough. Tough kids. Perry Ellis is like a polished pro. He's been around a long, long time. (Oklahoma's) Buddy Hield, he is who he is. (Baylor's) Taurean Prince, he's tough, tough, he's skilled, but he's mentally tough."

Tough seniors, more than anything, make the Big 12 a tough league.

Ellis has been in the league forever, but has too wide an array of scoring methods for his longevity to make him easy to scout. He plays even better against Big 12 competition than in non-conference games. At the halfway point of Big 12 play, Ellis is averaging 19.4 and 7.2 points in conference games. If you watch closely, he's even playing with a little more volume to his game. In the victory against Kansas State, he took the ball behind his head and slammed it through the hoop. Late in Saturday's blowout victory at TCU, he was going to lay it off the glass but at the last instant decided to flush it with his right hand.

Still, more than anything, it's his substance, not his style, that makes another Big 12 title possible for the player who won four state titles playing for Wichita Heights.

— Tom Keegan appears on The Drive every Sunday night on WIBW-TV.

— See what people were saying about Kansas at TCU during KUsports.com’s live coverage.


More news and notes from Kansas at TCU




By the Numbers: Kansas 75, TCU 56

By the Numbers: Kansas 75, TCU 56

Comments

Suzi Marshall 3 years, 9 months ago

Ellis is going to need to come up big for Kansas this week, especially with Selden feeling sick and Mason's ailments.

Does anyone know how many career points Ellis has, through the TCU game? He's got to be close to Bud Stallworth's 1495, who holds the 20th all-time KU scoring spot. Assuming we play another 14 games (9 league games, 2 Big 12 Tournament, 3 NCAA), Ellis could add about 240 points (17 ppg avg). Looks like Ellis could replace Paul Pierce at number 8 (1,768) all-time KU scoring spot.

Amazing...all the talk about Ellis over his time at KU and he can end up as a top 10 all time scorer. Ellis, who is also a good student, is a model for the kind of kid I'd love to see KU sign every year. There are not many guys like him. Love to see him get a spot in the NBA.

Kurt Eskilson 3 years, 9 months ago

After the TCU game Ellis has 1542 points. Ranks 18th all-time behind Calvin Thompson's 1548 and ahead of Drew Gooden's 1526. At Ellis' average of 16.7 pts/game, passing Pierce will require making it to the Big 12 Tourney Championship game and at least the Sweet 16. (What would Thompson's total have been if they'd had the 3-pointer then!)

Steve Corder 3 years, 9 months ago

A TCU student held up a sign that read: "Perry Ellis has 401-k."

Bryce Landon 3 years, 9 months ago

That same TCU student probably has $401K in student loan debt.

Janet Olin 3 years, 9 months ago

Love it. Perry has improved his game each and every year. No, he was not the second coming of JoJo as a freshman. He is not Buddy Hield. But he is absolutely the model of true 'student-athlete', who values his academic standing and degree, and also works every day to improve his game, hopes to play professionally. Bravo, Perry!

Steve Zimmerman 3 years, 9 months ago

Yea, Janet. Later improvement has been his dunks. I love to see him dunk whenever he's under the rim like that. I want to see more lobs to Perry like Graham did. As long as our PGs can make use of him inside, Perry will be very very productive. He can take anybody one-on-one. His 3 shooting has been great this year. He is a complete player. If he keeps playing like this, I'm pretty sure NBA will start talking about him.

Dan Leftwich 3 years, 9 months ago

Steve, I agree completely. Perry has been much more aggressive at the rim, dunking the ball instead of trying to finesse it off the glass. That is a testament to his strength and commitment. His efficiency numbers have gone up as a result. You can tell he has really worked on every aspect of his offensive game to deal with different defensive schemes. The coaches can draw up plans to get him shots in the offense, but when he is isolated it's up to him and his variety of moves is really impressive. Some pro team is going to get a solid player.

Bryce Landon 3 years, 9 months ago

Perry has done everything right on and off the court. This young man deserves a chance to be in the Final Four.

David Black 3 years, 9 months ago

Nick Krug takes the greatest photographs. I always enjoy spending time looking at each one. Rock Chalk

Michael Lorraine 3 years, 9 months ago

http://nickkrug.com/ Agree. I love his work. Funny thing about photography, I know some very creative people who are not good at capturing images with a camera and some photographers who are not very creative. There is a certain way of seeing with a camera that is different than seeing with one's eyes. Wish I could figure out the formula.

Luke Pitts 3 years, 9 months ago

Perry looked like the guy we need him to be. He looked much less predictable on offense, which i think is the key to him getting the defense off balance and him scoring. Much like what makes Niang so good, is you just can't tell where he is going with his possession. Our last match with VW it seemed Perry tried to just over power the D rather than outsmart it. Seldon can run into this also. I think he is strong, but with his size for a post guy, he has to be crafty, like yesterday.

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