TCU has regressed since win over KU
KenPom (Ken Pomeroy) Ranking: 284
All statistics from KenPom.com unless otherwise noted
• Getting to the free throw line: TCU has the nation's 57th-best offensive free throw rate, averaging 19.8 free throws per game while playing one of the nation's slowest tempos. That's not always a huge positive for the Horned Frogs, though, as their 58.7 percent free throw percentage is the fourth-worst in the nation.
• Forcing turnovers: In Big 12 play, TCU is fourth in the conference in defensive turnover percentage, creating giveaways on 20.3 percent of opponents' possessions. For the season, the Horned Frogs ranked 120th nationally in the stat (21.2 percent).
• Avoiding fouls: TCU is second-best in Big 12 play when it comes to defensive free throw rate, with conference foes averaging just 16.3 free throws per game. For the season, opponents are getting just 18.7 percent of their points against the Horned Frogs from the line (259th-highest split nationally).
• Shooting: TCU shoots a high number of two-point jumpshots according to Hoop-Math.com (47 percent of its shots, 16th-highest split nationally) and does it without much success (32 percent; NCAA average is 35 percent). This has crushed the Horned Frogs' two-point percentage, which sits at 42.8 percent (319th nationally). Though TCU is extremely selective with its three-point shots, it still shoots a horrible percentage from there as well, making just 28.7 percent of its long-range tries (330th nationally).
• Turnovers: TCU ranks 284th nationally in offensive turnover percentage (22.3 percent), and that number has stayed steady throughout the season. In Big 12 play, the Horned Frogs are last in the conference in turnover percentage, edging out Texas Tech for the bottom spot.
• First-shot defense: Big 12 opponents have shot high percentages from both two-point and three-point range against TCU, making 49.7 percent of their twos (eighth in conference) and 39.8 percent of their threes (ninth in conference). Hoop-Math.com shows that TCU also has allowed opponents to take a lot of easy shots, as 37 percent of the field goals against the Horned Frogs this year have come at the rim (NCAA average is 34 percent).
3 Players to Watch
• Six-foot-7 small forward Garlon Green (No. 33) had the best game against KU in the first matchup, putting in 20 points on 7-for-13 shooting which included 2-for-4 three-point shooting. KU fans will be happy to know that it took him four games after that to get seven more made field goals, as he went 1-for-12 against West Virginia, 2-for-9 against Oklahoma, 3-for-11 against Iowa State, then 6-for-15 against Texas. Green is a volume shooter (27.1 percent shot percentage, 246th nationally) that shouldn't be based on his numbers, as he's made just 39.4 percent of his twos and 32.3 percent of his threes. Though Green doesn't get to the free throw line often, he is TCU's best shooter there (77 percent).
• Six-foot-7 forward Connell Crossland (No. 2) isn't much of a scoring threat, but he is a great rebounder, as evidenced by his game-high 15 rebounds against KU in the first meeting. Crossland actually is a better offensive rebounder (181st nationally) than defensive rebounder (300th nationally), as he's averaged 3.2 offensive rebounds per game over his last six contests. Crossland gets a high percentage of his shots at the rim, which helps his two-point percentage (50.8 percent). He's terrible from the free throw line, though, making 33 of his 73 shots there (45.2 percent).
• Five-foot-11 point guard Kyan Anderson (No. 5) is TCU's best perimeter player. Though he takes the second-most shots on the team (24.7 percent, 474th nationally), shooting isn't his best asset. The sophomore is a good passer, posting the nation's 166th-best assist rate, while also providing the Horned Frogs with their best perimeter defender, ranking 330th in steal percentage. Anderson is prone to turnovers, though, and his two-point percentage (43.8 percent) and three-point percentage (33 percent) aren't anything to brag about.
After upsetting KU 62-55 on Feb. 6, TCU moved up 29 spots in KenPom's rankings from 278th to 247th.
Somehow, four games later, the Horned Frogs have played poorly enough to move to a ranking below where they were before the KU game (285th).
In other words ... the KU win didn't make TCU any better. In fact, the team has been playing worse.
Sometimes in a mismatch game at the Fieldhouse, KU will have some mercy on its opponent, taking it easy in the second half while having some sympathy for a team that is rebuilding.
Poor TCU. That won't happen Saturday, as the Jayhawks — and their fans — won't be letting up after the Jayhawks get a huge lead with revenge on their minds.
Kansas 77, TCU 45
Hawk to Rock
TCU is a team that turns it over often and allows a lot of layups. That sounds like a game where Travis Releford could thrive. I'll say Releford finishes as a top-two scorer for KU with at least two steals.
22-4 record, 296 points off (11.4 points off/game)
Hawk to Rock
SE Missouri: Perry Ellis (2nd in KUsports.com ratings)
Michigan State: Jeff Withey (4th)
Chattanooga: Andrew White III (10th)
Washington State: Ben McLemore (4th)
Saint Louis: Perry Ellis (7th)
San Jose State: Travis Releford (2nd)
Oregon State: Jeff Withey (2nd)
Colorado: Elijah Johnson (4th)
Belmont: Kevin Young (6th)
Richmond: Jeff Withey (1st)
Ohio State: Ben McLemore (1st)
American: Jeff Withey (5th)
Temple: Kevin Young (2nd)
Iowa State: Travis Releford (4th)
Texas Tech: Ben McLemore (4th)
Baylor: Jeff Withey (4th)
Texas: Elijah Johnson (8th)
Kansas State: Kevin Young (6th)
Oklahoma: Travis Releford (3rd)
West Virginia: Jeff Withey (2nd)
Oklahoma State: Ben McLemore (1st)
TCU: Kevin Young (3rd)
Oklahoma: Travis Releford (5th)
Kansas State: Naadir Tharpe (3rd)
Texas: Kevin Young (6th)
Oklahoma State: Ben McLemore (7th)
Average: 4.1st in KUsports.com ratings