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Tuesday’s foe is tall order for Kansas

First, Steve/Sam, thanks for the comments. Steve, you are right on point. We know JT's limitations. And Sam, folks that don't want discussion will label folks "haters." The reality is, Bill Self made a huge admission about 10 days ago -- that he tried to make last year's team into something it wasn't. That simple admission validates his critics last season. He also agreed that this year's team should more threes and play to its strength (shooting) -- again, a clear contradiction on how he handled last year's team.

Travis - There is an excellent per minute stat that helps define the total value of the player, based on a compilation of statistics -- it's the Player Efficiency Rating, or PER. Like all stats, it's not perfect. But it is a very large piece of the puzzle. It's a great stat for overall "net" production and value. Again, nothing is perfection. But it does tend to meet with the eye test nearly all of the time.

This season, both Diallo and Bragg have far superior PERs than Traylor. With the PER, the bigger the sample, the more reliable. We have a clear book on Traylor as his PER has always been inferior -- you can look at his prior seasons for that, too.

The thing here is that Traylor is not going to make vast improvement in year five. He is what he is. That's a reasonable assumption. He will have a very nice game, like he did against SDSU, but he will then have a number of net negative games. With Diallo and Bragg, one can reasonably assume that their best days are ahead of them. We just need to invest our game minutes more in their development -- the thing that gives them experience.

And I'm not "solely banking on the idea" that more playing time equates to improvement. It is a large part of getting comfortable both physically and mentally, and gaining the valuable experience that puts players in a position to play at their peak.

Also, Travis, whenever I use quotes, I'm always interested if there is something Self said to the contrary. I do make a concerted effort not to use a quote out of context or contrary to the entire thought process of the discussion. I think I have very fairly compiled the relevant discussion points.

December 28, 2015 at 12:47 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Providence transfer center to visit Kansas

The tweet itself is ridiculous. Obviously a Duke guy. No value in the tweet.

The only reason I posted it was Cliff's apparent slam of coach Self when he favorited it. Just seemed odd to me.

May 23, 2015 at 10:40 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Providence transfer center to visit Kansas

Saw this discussion on Cliff and thought I'd add some info.

If you look at a tweet from @DukeNBA on May 12 -- it said, "Crazy how the stock of Kelly Oubre and Cliff Alexander dropped dramatically after a season under Bill Self."

Then look at who favorited the tweet -- none other than Cliff Alexander.

May 23, 2015 at 8:08 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Self’s prediction: UK over Duke in final

Travis: Your premise is way off point. You ignore the numbers.

Wisconsin, Duke, and Michigan St. all shoot over 19 three pointers per game. They each shoot a lot of threes. Compare that to KU's three point shooting rate of just over 15 per game. Further, after the Baylor home game, we shot barely 13 per game. We were 21-4 before, and then 6-5 after.

Further, you haven't paid attention to Michigan St. In the past two seasons, MSU shot well over 700 three pointers for the season. In the two seasons before that, MSU shot in in the mid 500s.

Interestingly, UK shot nearly exactly the same number of three point attempts per game as Kansas. You note that UK is big dominated. And you are right. It is just simply puzzling why Kansas, who could barely score at 56% at the rim, would shoot the same rate of threes as a team that shot 69% at the rim.

Those conference titles are bunch of fun when we underachieve once again in March.

April 4, 2015 at 12:15 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Jayhawks wary of latest road trip to TCU

I have to agree with Bryce. Remember, the TCU loss followed the loss to OSU at home.

After the OSU loss, Self had his infamous meltdown where he threw EJ under the bus. The "we don't have a point guard." And "we were definitely a better team with (EJ) sitting next to us ... " It was really bad stuff. I listened live to it on the radio and was astonished by what I heard. The tone was even worse than the content. I had never, and have never, heard Self like that..

That tenor continued after the TCU game with the also infamous "Topeka YMCA" comments and "the worst team to ever play at Kansas" stuff. Even though Self was more light hearted in these comments, just not Self's best moments. My opinion is now, and was then, that the TCU loss was the direct result of how the loss to OSU was mishandled.

KU then lost at OU following TCU, but played much better. EJ said after the OU game, “Right now we’re trying to figure that out,” Johnson said. "You can’t ask a man who just got knocked out to count to 10. You can’t think straight right away. There’s so much going on in your head. Right now we’re just focused on getting our focus back. That’s what we’re focused on, getting our focus back.”

The 2013 loss to TCU was simply a rough patch. A loss that never should have happened. An anomaly. Self's poor handling of the OSU loss, and then TCU, were anomalies too.

Self has never been one to overtly take personal responsibility very often. Most of the time when he does, it's cryptic -- like, "we need to coach it better." As opposed to, "I really should have had our guys foul Burke before he got that shot off. That was my fault." There's a big difference.

But that's different than lashing out like he did. I don't recall him singling out a player like he did after OSU, or insulting (perhaps too strong of a word) a team like he did after TCU. The EJ stuff was obviously worse. Anyway, I think he's earned a big free pass for that, in my opinion. It's not close to his normal character.

Anyway, after that OU game in 2013, here's what Self said about the league race after the OU loss: “We’ve been behind a game in the league race going into the last seven-eight games of the season before,” Self said. “We were never quite as good as our record, but we are better than what we have played here this past week. Does it surprise me we are in a dogfight? Not at all. This talk people had that the whole deal is who is going to finish second? I never had that feeling at all. We are going to have to play our best ball to have a chance to win it. Every game is lose-able on the road especially when you have Baylor, Oklahoma State and Iowa State left.”

He got the ship righted pretty quickly. And we know how that turned out.

January 28, 2015 at 12:50 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Less than perfect: Greene misses FT, but his trey huge vs. Oklahoma

Ingram is a small forward, a wing -- a three. He is not a post player. He would not be competing with Traylor, who is of course plays the four and is strictly a post player.

With some luck, Traylor won't play much at all next season.

January 22, 2015 at 10:34 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

With clinic, practices, Jayhawks 'living at the gym'

I appreciate that Self mentions that Traylor brings consistent energy. But he just isn't a high quality player. He is exactly what his non-ranking said he'd be. He's a redshirt junior, and is a serviceable 4th big. He should not be a third big at Kansas. I don't think we've seen any improvement since last season. He is consistently inconsistent. He can be terrific as he was in the EKU game, and he can be very bad as he has been for numerous stretches this season. Nothing negative, really, he just is what he is. And he is what we could have reasonably expected he would be.

Traylor averages just .214 rebounds per minute, and just .25 points per minute, good for 5th and 9th on the team respectively. That just doesn't cut it. He's worse than Lucas in both categories.

Traylor's played more minutes per game than Cliff, but Cliff has .321 rebounds per minute, and .439 points per minute. That's first and third on the team.

The better player needs to play substantially more than the lesser player.

December 29, 2014 at 10:26 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

Manning the point: Junior guard Evan Manning could see more time

Guys, I'm sorry. But the Christmas spirit has made everyone delusional.

Evan Manning is an unranked, non-recruited player who was gifted a spot on the KU roster *solely* because his dad was a tremendous player here. That's reality. He wouldn't have sniffed D-1 but for the fact that his last name was Manning.

There is no *deserves* about it. The only reason why he is even being discussed is because of roster issues. As Self said, "emergency."

It's just comical how all of a sudden a decent high school player becomes "valuable", or considered for a "scholarship". We make unfounded declarations that he "won't make terrible plays" and that he's a "glue guy." And that he should be "given a chance without question."

Do you all really understand how silly all that sounds?

The only place Evan Manning should be playing point guard is at Washburn or Emporia St. If he's that good, why doesn't his dad have him over to Wake Forest to back up their point guard?

December 25, 2014 at 2:41 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Jayhawks 'exposed' in miserable loss to Temple

Benz said above: "That was one of the most lackadaisical, lethargic, lazy, heartless games I have ever seen by people wearing Kansas uniforms in a very long time."

That sums last night pretty well. This one wasn't about talent, or scheme, or anything else other than "want to", as Roy would say.

But the nice thing is that the problems with last night, largely, are controllable.

The systemic issue that is more concerning is our inability to score at the rim.

December 23, 2014 at 8:09 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

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