Never one to pass up a chance to deliver constructive criticism in a way that sticks, Kansas basketball coach Bill Self included a little of that in telling senior Frank Mason he had a good game Tuesday night as the guard checked out for the final time.
Mason certainly did have a good game, falling just shy of a triple-double with 21 points, 10 rebounds and nine assists in a 92-74 exhibition victory against Washburn in sauna-like Allen Fieldhouse.
“I didn’t know what it was until I came out at the end and coach told me if I didn’t shoot one of the threes I could have gotten an assist, but it was too late,” Mason said.
View a gallery of images from the Jayhawks' exhibition against Washburn on Tuesday, Nov. 1 at Allen Fieldhouse.
So next time, Mason will look one more time to set up a teammate. Lesson learned.
Even though a capacity crowd thought enough of the entertainment value of a game that doesn’t count in the standings to brave the heat and skip the World Series, nothing in the box score counts for anything. It won’t be attached to any other results and will fade away, never to be revisited, unless one of the players ends up becoming a multi-millionaire playing on the PGA tour and years later somebody searches the archives to see how he did in the game.
So given that the game didn’t count, it would have been a shame to waste a triple-double on an exhibition, right, Fearless Frank?
“It doesn’t really matter,” Mason said. “I'm just disappointed with the way we played as a team, and we definitely have a lot of things we have to get better at.”
After a 92-74 victory in the team's first exhibition game against Washburn, Kansas men's basketball coach Bill Self discusses his disappointment with turnovers and rebounds.
Kansas freshman Josh Jackson, senior Frank Mason III and junior Svi Mykhailiuk talk about their basketball team's 92-74 exhibition victory over Washburn. Jackson said he was nervous in the first half for his first unofficial game and Mason was disappointed by his team's play.
Rebounding would rank high on that list.
“There’s no question who our best rebounder is, and that’s embarrassing when he’s 5-foot-10,” Kansas coach Bill Self said.
The three primary centers in KU's four-guard lineup — Landen Lucas, Udoka Azubuike and Carlton Bragg — stand a combined 20 feet, 8 inches. That trio totaled four rebounds in 39 minutes.
Mason twice had 10-rebound efforts for Kansas, but said that as far as he could remember, he never achieved a triple-double at any level.
“I always got close to it, maybe had like 25, 10 and seven, 25, nine and nine, something like that,” he said. “I honestly don’t think I ever got one.”
Washburn coach Bob Chipman didn’t need to look at the box score to heap praise on Mason.
“Frank’s just an incredible guard,” Chipman said. “Gotta be one of the best in the country.”
Chipman praised the play of his point guard, Randall Smith, including the effort he put into guarding Mason.
“Trying to go guard Frank, that’s not easy,” Chipman said. “He’s just so crafty.”
— See what people were saying about KU's matchup against Washburn during KUsports.com’s live coverage.