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Jeff Withey shows toughness against Kansas State

1. Jeff Withey: Showed he could not just hang but dominate in a physical game. Fell one block short of a triple-double with 18 points, 11 rebounds and nine blocks. In the three games since the scoreless Missouri night, Withey is averaging 20.3 points, 12 rebounds and 6.3 blocked shots. Defended his Big 12 player of the week honors the way he defends shooters near the hoop.

2. Tyshawn Taylor: Missed the front end of a one-and-one twice in the final minute and had a costly turnover, but, as he has a tendency of doing, took over the game during the decisive stretch. When KU went to a Triangle-and-Two defense and went on an 11-0 run, Taylor scored eight of those 11 and finished with a team-high 20 points, five rebounds, five assists and three turnovers. Look for Taylor to be a late addition to the Cousy Award list of finalists. Taylor continued his hot touch from three-point range, hitting three of six.

3. Thomas Robinson: Not his best night. Thanks to foul trouble, he played just 33 minutes. The highlight of his night: He made four of six free throws. Lowlight of his night: five turnovers. Finished with 10 points and nine rebounds.

4. Travis Releford: Did a nice job of chasing Rodney McGruder all over the place, forcing him into difficult shots. Managed to stay ahead of a defender on a runout for a nice, quick dunk. Finished with four points, six rebounds and a steal.

5. Elijah Johnson: Fouled out late, which left Tyshawn Taylor pretty much alone against K-State’s full-court pressure. Had a decent night defensively and on the boards (five rebounds), but had a rough night offensively, committing four turnovers to go with five points and five assists.

6. Naadir Tharpe: Played a minute and made a nice pass.

7. Conner Teahan: Played 18 of the bench’s 30 minutes and scored the only two bench points in the final seconds of the 30th minute of bench play.

8. Kevin Young: Somebody had to be eighth.

9. Justin Wesley: In a game in which K-State’s only chance of scoring was at the free throw line, Wesley committed three fouls in six minutes.

The Keegan Ratings: Season Standings
1. Thomas Robinson (232 points)
2. Tyshawn Taylor (218 points)
3. Jeff Withey (192 points)
4. Travis Releford (175 points)
5. Elijah Johnson (172 points)
6. Conner Teahan (134 points)
7. Kevin Young (111 points)
8. Justin Wesley (92 points)
9. Naadir Tharpe (68 points)
10. Merv Lindsay (11 points)

Comments

Kye Clark 2 years, 9 months ago

Just always such a drop off it seems after the third guy, and for much of the season it was after the second guy. TRob, TT, and everybody else. I know this was an ugly game and points were hard to come by, but I've been saying for quite awhile now that if we're going to be a legit Final Four team I believe we have to have another perimeter threat. Having 2 post threats is great, but I believe the ascension of either EJ or Travis has to take place for us to make a deep run.

Kye Clark 2 years, 9 months ago

Part of the problem I think lies in the composition of this team. In most year's the production from our 4th and 5th options in the starting line-up would be pretty much in-line with what we're getting from those two. Normally I think EJ & Releford would be playing exactly the roles they need to be playing. The problem is that there is no production from the bench. TRob last year, Mario Little, Brady and/or Tyrel, Sherron his first two years - these were guys that could come in and give you some offense. A spark. This year we have nothing, save Connor on occasion hitting a few trey bombs. Because of this, we have to maximize the production from our five best players. It has to be extremely difficult to try and integrate all 5 starters into the offensive flow of the game. Since they're all on the court at the same time for so much of the game there are going to be periods during the game where Tyshawn, TRob, or Withey aren't carrying us and it's during those lulls that EJ & Releford have to assert themselves.

Like I said, I'm sure it's difficult; to just be able to first recognize when their contributions are needed, and then to be able to throw that switch. I'm not giving up on them, just maybe taking a little longer for this team to figure everything out, which is understandable.

actorman 2 years, 9 months ago

I'll put this out to everyone: is there any hope for Wesley to be a contributor this year? He seems to have completely disappeared, to the point where if he doesn't come in and immediately rack up a couple of fouls (and do nothing else) I'm surprised.

Earlier in the year it seemed like he was doing some good things, but now it's been a long time since he's contributed anything. Any insights as to why?

Dirk Medema 2 years, 9 months ago

If nothing else, he is contributing rest for Jeff & TRob. That is important. He is trying to play some D, but really just seems physically overwhelmed in the post.

Doug Fogleman 2 years, 9 months ago

I actually had this conversation last night. Look how far Withey has came along Jackson and Kauhn improved leaps and bounds from one year to the next. Even the Twins made big strides in their time with Manning. With Wesley atheletism I think he will improve considerable in the off season.

actorman 2 years, 9 months ago

I'll put this out to everyone: is there any hope for Wesley to be a contributor this year? He seems to have completely disappeared, to the point where if he doesn't come in and immediately rack up a couple of fouls (and do nothing else) I'm surprised.

Earlier in the year it seemed like he was doing some good things, but now it's been a long time since he's contributed anything. Any insights as to why?

actorman 2 years, 9 months ago

Man, you click to post something and nothing happens, so you click again. Then it comes up twice! You'd think I'd know better by now.

manginodrh00lz 2 years, 9 months ago

No...we expect these stunts from you now and in the future.

Dirk Medema 2 years, 9 months ago

It is good that Naadir is not turning the ball over the way that he had been but I think you have his number inverted. Conner was solid as always, and was absolutely cold blooded going to the line at the end after TT attempted to give the game back to the kitties. Kevin continues to show the energy, but is finding his niche as the that supports the headliners and ALWAYS hustling. Justin is pretty overwhelmed physically most of the time, but filling a valuable role of providing minutes when Jeff or TRob needs some pine time. That is huge. HUGE. It would be nice if Naadir continues to develop in practice and become capable of some quality minutes to both TT & EJ.

TheStonesSuck 2 years, 9 months ago

Conner Teahan is about as solid as a bowl of jello. He occasionally makes an opportunistic play on defense. Other than that, he hits maybe 1/4 of his open three pointers. Don't get me wrong... I root for Conner, but he is not a solid contributer.

Alohahawk 2 years, 9 months ago

Yeah. Should have switched Teahan and Tharpe, if only for the clutch freethrows Conner made in the crucial crunch time at the end. And Teahan played a lot of minutes giving the starters some rest. Sometimes you have to give credit for that alone.

Just wish EJ and CT could make a few more of those 3's. Making those 3's could be the difference between a sweet 16 season and a final 4. Just imagine how much more room TRob and JW would have if the opposition had to guard the perimeter a little tighter.

I give credit to Releford and Johnson for their defense. That can't be fun chasing players around the court throughout the game while the opposition plays bumper cars with their bodies.

Knight was positive TT charged when he made that 3 pointer as time ran out. I think it was a good no-call, because it could easily have been a flop. Even Martin stated it was a flop post game.

I truly think that giving up all those points at the end of the OSU game may have helped KU in this game. Otherwise, the Jayhawks might have been a little too confident before the game, what with their # 5 ranking and having beaten KSU by 18 in Lawrence.

Alohahawk 2 years, 9 months ago

BTW, according to ESPN's stats for the season, including this game's blocks Withey moves into 7th place nationally, (with 88) one block less than tied for 6th.

TRob is holding strong in 2nd place in the rebounding category.

Steve Kubler 2 years, 9 months ago

I was glad to see CT going to the foul line instead of Taylor. Is it just me or is Tyshawn's free throws looking uglier and uglier each game?

Seemed to me that in the post game interview with Withey his nose was swollen and perhaps appeared broken. He came out of the game shortly after TRob nailed him and kept holding it as if to pull it straight.

eastcoasthawk 2 years, 9 months ago

I thought Kevin Young did a good job of defending and setting screens away from the basket while he was in the game. He picked up a couple of fouls quickly but was definitely a positive for us. Keegan must have been getting tired of writing at that point.

rockchalk_dpu 2 years, 9 months ago

KY reminds me of a lot of our post players their first year in the program. It seems like they come into the game and pick up fouls just standing there and last night was no exception. The refs seems a little tight on the calls in the post when we'd try to body up K-State, and a lot of those came when Young and Wesley were in the game. Give it time for them to build some size and muscle, and to play with Coach D and they will learn to play within the defense and do their work early to prevent these mistakes.

Sam Brockert 2 years, 9 months ago

It is easy to set up a screen when you move with the defender every single time. I cringed everytime, expecting there to be a call. Luckily there wasn't one.

Clarence Haynes 2 years, 9 months ago

To TRob's defense, when he got the ball underneath, he was mugged, with the refs making a bunch of no calls on fouls. Also, I think that teams have learned to try to draw fouls on TRob's dribble drive to the basket. It cost us twice last night and of course, the Moore call at Mizzou albeit questionable did hurt. It is a great weapon, but perhaps he has to develop variations (eg stop and pop, dish it out for a perimeter shot, etc).

Clarence Haynes 2 years, 9 months ago

He played passive because of fouls! Moreover, what can you do when you have 3 guys hanging all over you (It is not as if they were 5-9 150 lb midgets defending him). Also, Withey benefitted from the TRob double teams. Also, K State blocked Withey's shots down low! .

Studogg 2 years, 9 months ago

So I have to share this with my Jayhawk brethren. This morning on the way into work ( I teach in Kansas and my son goes to my school) we drove into some dense fog. As we did I commented something like "Man, this is some thick fog!" And without missing a beat, my 7-year-old son in the back seat replies, "Whoa, are we getting close to Allen Fieldhouse?!" Haha! That's my boy :)

Alohahawk 2 years, 9 months ago

Love it. He's obviously been brought up in the right frame of mind.

Ahh, the innocence of youth. Reminds us oldies of the old Art Linkletter Show: Kids Will Say the Darndest Things".

REHawk 2 years, 9 months ago

Keegan, that has to be a whimsical decision, placing Tharpe above players who actually spent minutes relieving starters, albeit their scoring contributions were almost nil (but for Conner's two clutchtime freethrows). Tharpe made a nice pass, although into easily defended traffic; but how much relief was he able to provide in the way of minutes to TT or EJ? Your RANKINGS have fallen into line with Bill Self's punitive YANKINGS.

VaJay 2 years, 9 months ago

I don't think its whimsical. He probably picked Tharp higher because for every good thing the others did was balanced out by fouls, poor defending, turnovers, etc. & where have HCBS's punitive yankings got us - how bout top 5 in the country, top of the Big 12. You expected better with this group? Please.

hawk_of_ages 2 years, 9 months ago

Constructive comments like yours are sure to boost the kid's confidence.

Sandeep Kalburgie 2 years, 9 months ago

Why dont we try to recruit Nerlens Noel? He is a beast!!!!

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