Jeff Withey tops first ratings of year
1. Jeff Withey: He was KU's leading scorer with 17 points, but his biggest impact came on the other end of the floor. He had five blocks and changed numerous other Southeast Missouri shots, leading KU's stifling defense in the first half. Withey also tied a team-high with 12 rebounds, including five offensive boards.
2. Perry Ellis: After his first game, he's probably already established himself as KU's best scorer in the post. The freshman showed an array of moves — including a left-handed baby hook — on his way to 15 points on 5-for-9 shooting. He also posted eight rebounds and no turnovers in 23 minutes.
3. Ben McLemore: Though he wasn't as aggressive as he could have been offensively, McLemore still impacted the game in nearly every way possible. He posted nine points, 12 rebounds, five assists and three blocks with just one turnover. He also won a pair of 50-50 balls that led to layups, which should make his coach happy.
4. Naadir Tharpe: Attacked the paint more often in the second half and also looked confident in his jumper. He posted 10 points on 4-for-11 shooting, which included 3-for-5 shooting from two-point range. The sophomore also added two assists to go with two turnovers in 28 minutes, playing point guard for most of the night with Elijah Johnson held back by fouls and cramps.
5. Jamari Traylor: KU coach Bill Self commented afterwards that he thought Traylor did some good things. The freshman posted five points on 2-for-4 shooting, which included a composed spin move and two in the lane. He also added a rebound, assist, steal and block to go with two turnovers in 16 minutes.
6. Travis Releford: The senior struggled with threes (0-for-5) and turnovers (four), but he still provided some stability when Johnson went to the bench. His best offense was in transition, as he had nine points on 3-for-11 shooting to go with five rebounds in 34 minutes.
7. Elijah Johnson: Didn't look like himself, perhaps because of leg cramps. He also couldn't avoid the whistles, fouling out of the third game of his career after playing just 22 minutes. He posted three points on 1-for-5 shooting, missed all four of his threes and had just one assist.
8. Rio Adams: He's trying hard defensively but might need to back off the aggressiveness just a bit. He had two fouls in five minutes, but he did make both of his free throws for two points.
9. Andrew White III: He ended his team's stretch of 17 consecutive missed threes with a trey late. He posted three points on 1-for-2 shooting in his three minutes.
10. Justin Wesley: He had two rebounds, two fouls and two turnovers in eight minutes.
KUsports.com Season Standings
1. Jeff Withey (10 points)
2. Perry Ellis (9 points)
3. Ben McLemore (8 points)
4. Naadir Tharpe (7 points)
5. Jamari Traylor (6 points)
6. Travis Releford (5 points)
7. Elijah Johnson (4 points)
8. Rio Adams (3 points)
9. Andrew White III (2 points)
10. Justin Wesley (1 point)
— Compiled by Jesse Newell