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Confident Jeff Withey dominates Oklahoma State

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1. Jeff Withey: Playing with all-time high confidence and energy coming off his 25-point Baylor game, Withey looked even better in the opening half vs. OSU, hustling his way to 11 points, 11 rebounds, an assist, a steal and three blocked shots. Finished with 18 points, a career-high 20 rebounds and seven blocked shots. Withey has scored in double figures in eight of the past nine games, the exception being his scoreless night in Mizzou Arena.

2. Thomas Robinson: Exposed Oklahoma State talent Le’Bryan Nash as the freshman that he is in the first half. Nash, provided he doesn’t jump too soon, will make it to the NBA, but Robinson schooled him in a way that showed that day is in the distance. Robinson, once passing up an open 10-footer to feed Withey for a dunk, finished with 24 points and 14 rebounds.

3. Elijah Johnson: In the first half, he caught fire from long distance and made terrific passes. Faded in the second half and finished with 11 points, four boards, five assists and two steals.

4. Tyshawn Taylor: Concentration lapsed in the second half after a terrific first half in which he and Johnson combined for 10 assists and one turnover.

5. Travis Releford: Contributed 10 points and four rebounds and made 5 of 6 shots from the field.

6. Kevin Young: Skilled passer who finds the open man quickly and gets rid of it in an instant is looking more confident. Contributed four points, three boards an assist and a steal in 13 minutes.

7. Naadir Tharpe: Played six minutes and had zeroes across the board. He didn’t turn it over and hung in there defensively.

8. Conner Teahan: Misfired on all three three-pointers on a scoreless day.

9. Justin Wesley: Played less than a minute.

The Keegan Ratings: Season Standings
1. Thomas Robinson (224 points)
2. Tyshawn Taylor (209 points)
3. Jeff Withey (182 points)
4. Travis Releford (168 points)
5. Elijah Johnson (166 points)
6. Conner Teahan (130 points)
7. Kevin Young (108 points)
8. Justin Wesley (90 points)
9. Naadir Tharpe (63 points)
10. Merv Lindsay (11 points)

Comments

Vernon Riggs 8 years, 6 months ago

Thought Naadir moved up a little bit. He wasn't just in HCBS's doghouse, he was buried under it. Six minutes without one cuss word from HCBS: huge feat. I think Naadir will be making big contributions in 2012-2013. RCJH!

Richard Benson 8 years, 6 months ago

Maybe Naadir can do us some good yet this year. Worth noting: Naadir played six minutes in the first half when KU played dominant basketball. Naadir didn't get off the bench in the second half when KU stunk.

I'm not sayin' he could begin to handle it, but if he could have spelled Tyshawn for three minutes at any point during the first 3/4 of the Missouri game (or the last one minute of first-half play, so as to give Tyshawn an extended halftime blow), Tyshawn would have had a little gas to finish with.

Let me be clear: I am not criticizing Tyshawn. I am a Tyshawn Taylor fan. But, brainfarts admitted, as a practical matter, Tyshawn takes no possessions off at either end in terms of effort. If HCBS wants Tyshawn to play well in the final minute of a tough game against a talented, scrappy, speed-up team then Naadir HAS TO BE considered. Now.

Brandon Pope 8 years, 6 months ago

I have been hating pretty hard on Teahan recently (just ask my wife), but I do stand by this: aside from T-Rob discovering the "Pass to Withey" option on offense, there is nothing more encouraging to me right now than seeing Young produce some decent minutes off the bench.

Teahan is simply a liability to this team right now, his confidence seems to be fading by the minute and although I hate to say it, I don't see him contributing to this team much down the stretch.

The scouting report on Teahan seems to be this: If he has the ball, pressure the crap out of him and he will likely turn it over. If he is guarding you, drive and you will score or be fouled. His below average ball handling and defense were fine when we was shooting a cool 40% from three, but now, it his risk/benefit ratio is not looking good at all.

Seeing Young step into that 6th man spot and moving Teahan to a position where he gets fewer minutes seems like a positive to me. Young has shown that he can contribute in more ways than one if he is confident. He is a great passer, skies for boards and hustles up and down the floor and is good for 4 points if he plays well which is more than we are getting from our current #6.

With TT showing this year that he can shoot the three and EJs shot looking like it may be back, maybe we don't need the pure shooter on the floor this season like in years past. We certainly don't have the depth and that seems to be working out okay for us this year.

Richard Benson 8 years, 6 months ago

If you are a fairly serious baseball fan, you know that some batters do much better -- MUCH better -- when they take (meaning: do not swing at) the first pitch in a given at-bat, even if that first pitch is a hanging curve ball that just hangs all afternoon. I don't know if that has to do with timing, mentation, or what, but it is a very real phenomenon that never goes away, but rather tends to apply (or not apply) to a given player through his entire career until he retires.

Maybe I have watched too many Jayhawk games, and I am losing my mind, but I swear that at least a few of KU's opponents have had no one within 10 feet of Teahan on KU's first possession after he enters the game. If he bites, he tends to miss, and to proceed into a miserable overall performance. If he passes on that initial, baited open shot and moves the ball and defends hard for a couple of minutes, KU's opponent (now guarding him tightly) cannot shut him down.

That seems far-fetched, even to me. But I would love to look at a league-opponent's scouting report to see.

Kye Clark 8 years, 6 months ago

It's something Bobby Knight touched on during a big Monday game, that he didn't like seeing Connor come straight off the bench and start shooting cold. Get warmed up, get in the flow of the offense, then look for your shot (he said).

Connor didn't have a good game today, but I'm not bagging on him like Jaydoc, even though I love seeing KY out there as well. He is generally solid, although he does have some turnovers that are along the likes of some of Naadir's - just getting his pocket picked way too easily. I'd be in favor of having some of minutes go to KY, or Tharpe, but most games he does a decent job.

baldwinjhawk 8 years, 6 months ago

Totally agree! SLOW footed is an understatement. I spent the entire mizzou game yelling at the tv to take Teahan out of the freakin game! At least young can dunk the ball...

repaste 8 years, 6 months ago

This is Hcbs 's MO, The season starts with the boys that know how to play the system well, and he gets results. Later in the season, if lucky, the young talent figures it out and then you get the fireworks!

rwhawk 8 years, 6 months ago

Been saying it since the Kentucky game...

Darrel Stice 8 years, 6 months ago

Here's hoping Jeff receives Big 12 POW honors for his outstanding play in the last 2 games, and PLEASE let his fire and love of playing rub off on everyone else! What a treat it's been to watch him lately!

Alohahawk 8 years, 6 months ago

If Jeff doesn't receive player of the week for this past week's performances, the voters would have had to have buried their heads in the proverbial you know what. There's also the case that TRob deserves runner-up.

Fantastic first half. Then, "Oops!" during the second half. That makes 3 straight games KU has let up in the second half. They'll need to improve on that against K State and especially Mizzery. And if KU beats Mizzery, OSU is going to paint a big target on the Jayhawks's backs on their home court. The Cowboys have always played KU tough at home.

As for the conference race, right now, Mizzery has a slightly easier schedule left to play: OSU, KSU & ISU at home, with KU their only tough game away. Having already lost to OSU and KSU on the road, those will be payback games.

KU has two tough road games, KSU & OSU, but has the advantage of playing Mizzery at home. And Texas won't be a pushover in the Phog for Senior Night.

Baylor is all but out of the race. They must play Iowa State twice, and I see Baylor losing at least one of those, and possibly losing to KSU at home or Texas away. ISU could easily end up in third place.

Kye Clark 8 years, 6 months ago

"PLEASE let his fire and love of playing rub off on everyone else!"

Kind of a funny statement, considering it's his teammates that have to fire him up. Let's just hope they keep punching him in the chest and hollering at him.

tical523 8 years, 6 months ago

Great game!!! I'm comfortable if any team tries to run zone on us in the tourney, our bigs pass great and when Kevin Young comes in the game no zone is safe. Really encouraged with the way our team looked and passed today.

Michael Bratisax 8 years, 6 months ago

Great 20 minutes.. The second 20 left a bad taste in my mouth.

This team needs to learn to finish if they want to go anywhere in the NCAA .

hbjayhawk 8 years, 6 months ago

Amazing how unselfish this team is...releford was mvp in b12 games 1-4, TRob was mvp in game 5-8, withey is current mvp...can't wait to see what is next

treed14ku 8 years, 6 months ago

All KU fans need to sign this petition to not play Mizzou again. http://www.gopetition.com/petitions/boycott-scheduling-missouri.html Pass this link on to all your friends on Facebook and Twitter. Our voices matter.

actorman 8 years, 6 months ago

Thanks for the link, treed. I encourage everyone to sign.

KU_Alumn_2000 8 years, 6 months ago

Great game Hawks. Way to put them away early.

I'm with a couple of the previous posters on some items.

1: Teahan is a liability. Play Young on the wing instead of Teahan.

2: The OK State game in Stillwater scares the crap out of me. Hopefully we don't screw that one up like we have in the past.

Michael Bratisax 8 years, 6 months ago

Young over Conner might be a good idea. But EJ is my biggest concern... I hope we get someone next year who understands what HCBS is trying to do. EJ is still not stepping up and at times looks lost. Of the starting 5, EJ is the most disappointing imo.

Michael Bratisax 8 years, 6 months ago

I like the optimism of many posters but this was not a great game.

That requires 40 minutes of effort, not 20 and coasting to the end.

Kye Clark 8 years, 6 months ago

It's human nature. I don't begrudge them that, especially not on the heels of two big, emotional road games at Misery and at Baylor. It was bound to be a let-down game; had all the makings of a trap game with the game at Manhattan on Monday night. Instead they came out and did what they needed to do - put the game away early. The first half was as well as I've seen them play all year. So while it would have been nice for them to play better in the second half, it doesn't bother or worry me.

Ben Kane 8 years, 6 months ago

there was just no way they were going to come out of the locker room after halftime and not have a let down. I'm not too concerned about it.

on to the next win.

Michael Bratisax 8 years, 6 months ago

I agree ict..but once you slow down, its harder to get going again. Just glad OSU shot poorly the entire game. I still remember UNC closing the gap in '08

Kye Clark 8 years, 6 months ago

Oh no doubt brother. I was sweating that Final Four game big time!

I agree with what you're saying, I've just seen people draw parallels to that and the end of the Misery game, and to me I think that's a flawed comparison.

Again, I wish they would have played better. Would have been nice to rest the starters a bit in the second half - both for their benefit and to get guys like Tharpe and maybe even Lindsay some extra PT - but it is what it is. They'll be ready for the kitties.

Jeremy Wilhelm 8 years, 6 months ago

Well, I'll say this... They didn't handle the full court press too well but I didn't see a lack of effort from them - just poor execution. Still, OSU wore themselves out running the press and still never seriously threatened to get back in the game. Credit Ford for getting his team to play harder in the second half. Let's just hope Self gas them practice breaking full court pressure for a few sessions! Now, beat KSU!

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