It certainly doesn’t rank in the top five of reasons the Kansas basketball program is the No. 1 choice of so many elite athletes, but the lob play might just be the most subtle factor that never is discussed.
Basketball prospects watch SportsCenter highlights. So often they feature a player on the run tossing a pass to a teammate who soars above the rim and flushes it. Typically, that is followed by a crowd shot of students going wild. What better way to market a basketball team and its wild atmosphere? Fun games in which to play and attend.
Most of the highlights from Tuesday night’s victory against Iona College came from players in the 5-foot-something/7-foot category.
The best in the former category involved Naadir Tharpe setting up Frank Mason, the two shortest players on the team playing so fast.
The highlight of Mason throwing down Tharpe’s lob might have taken the television audience by surprise, but nobody in the program was shocked.
“We watch him in practice,” coach Bill Self said of Mason. “That would have surprised us if he didn’t dunk.”
Kansas had seven dunks against Iona, which did not have any. KU leads opponents, 14-4, in dunks three games into the season. The totals: Andrew Wiggins (7), Joel Embiid (4), Perry Ellis (1), Mason (1), Jamari Traylor (1).