Jeff Withey tops ratings against TCU


1. Jeff Withey: The senior had a hard time getting shots up against TCU's physical post players, but he still was easily KU's best performer. Withey posted 12 points on 4-for-6 shooting from the floor and 4-for-5 shooting from the free throw line. He also added eight rebounds and three blocks to go with two turnovers in 33 minutes.

2. Ben McLemore: After lifting KU out of so many scoring droughts this season, McLemore couldn't bail out the Jayhawks in the first half, scoring two points on 0-for-6 shooting. McLemore bounced back with a solid second half, ending with a team-high 15 points (6-for-16 shooting), though he still missed all six of his three-point tries. He also had nine rebounds, three assists and one block to go with a team-high-tying three turnovers.

3. Kevin Young: KU coach Bill Self said Kevin Young's benching in favor of Perry Ellis didn't affect the outcome — a point I disagree with. Young had a favorable matchup against TCU but only played 14 minutes, with Self many times choosing to play small with two guards that combined to go 5-for-27 from the floor. Young was productive during the time he was in, posting six points (2-for-7 shooting) with nine rebounds, which included four offensive boards. He also added a steal with no turnovers.

4. Travis Releford: The senior was burned on the defensive end by Garlon Green, who scored a game-high 20 points, and was a no-show on the offensive end, attempting just one field goal. Through all that, he still ranks fourth because everyone else stunk worse than he did. Releford added six rebounds and four assists to go with one turnover before he fouled out after 36 minutes.

5. Jamari Traylor: Scored KU's first and only basket in the game's first 12 minutes. That basically was his entire line. The freshman played seven minutes, scoring two points with one rebound and two fouls.

6. Naadir Tharpe: The good news? He hit all six of his free throw attempts, which pushed his point total to 11 points. The bad news? The sophomore was just 2-for-15 from the floor and 1-for-6 from three-point range, which included crucial misses late in the second half when KU still was within striking distance. Though Tharpe's confidence is admirable, his decision-making has to be questioned if those quick-trigger shots early in the shot clock aren't falling. Tharpe posted two assists and two turnovers in 25 minutes.

7. Perry Ellis: Started for the first time since the Michigan State game because Self wanted to shake things up. Ellis did almost nothing in his 10 minutes, picking up a rebound and missing one field goal.

8. Rio Adams: A member of the 3 trillion club; he played three minutes with no other statistics. That put him ahead of three other Jayhawk scholarship players.

9. Justin Wesley: Had a rebound, a foul and a turnover in three minutes.

10. Elijah Johnson: Self had to know his critical comments about Johnson after the Oklahoma State game was going to force him in one of two directions: Either the guard was going to be fired up to prove his coach wrong, or he was going to play like a guy whose confidence had been shaken. Obviously, Self made the wrong call after Saturday's loss, as Johnson is playing with hesitation and shooting like a player with a bad case of the yips. Johnson was 3-for-12 from the floor and 2-for-8 from three, once again missing too many open jumpers while also failing to convert those opportunities he had at the rim. He had eight points, three assists, one block and tied a team-high with three turnovers before he fouled out after playing 31 minutes.

11. Andrew White III: Missed a three-pointer, airballed a three-pointer, posted a turnover and had three fouls in his two minutes. Season Standings
1. Jeff Withey (170 points)
2. Ben McLemore (167 points)
3. Travis Releford (161 points)
4. Kevin Young (124 points)
5. Elijah Johnson (117 points)
6. Naadir Tharpe (106 points)
7. Perry Ellis (93 points)
8. Jamari Traylor (72 points)
9. Andrew White III (38 points)
10. Rio Adams (26 points)
11. Justin Wesley (11 points)

Big 12 Standings
1. Jeff Withey (79 points)
2. Ben McLemore (78 points)
3. Travis Releford (75 points)
4. Kevin Young (65 points)
5. Naadir Tharpe (45 points)
T6. Elijah Johnson (41 points)
T6. Perry Ellis (41 points)
8. Jamari Traylor (31 points)
9. Andrew White III (15 points)
10. Rio Adams (11 points)
11. Justin Wesley (4 points)


Jack Brooks 6 years, 3 months ago

Saying Jeff Withey was the best player is saying he was the least fat kid in fat camp. He was the biggest guy on the court and should have had double the stats he had. That being said ALL of the guys play like they expect the other team to just roll over for them. And now they've given us one of the worst losses in Kansas history. Unbelievable.

nuleafjhawk 6 years, 3 months ago

Yeah. There was no best Jayhawk last night. They all stunk.

McLemore (NBA bound McLemore bwa-hahaha) did have some nice NBA type stats though. 6 for 16 from the field, 0 for 6 from 3 pt land. Awesome.

SaltLakeHawk 6 years, 3 months ago

Come on, nuleaf, you're better than this. Yes, McLemore had a bad night. But that fact suddenly makes his NBA dreams "bwa-hahaha" laughable?? Get real.

The thought of him NOT being NBA-bound is laughable.

Michael Bennett 6 years, 3 months ago

yeah, keep trashing the best player on the team, both in skill and attitude.

AsadZ 6 years, 3 months ago

What has happened to this team from Dec to Jan/Febb is mind bogglin

I mean we beat OSU on their turf

We beat very good teams in Colarado, Belmont, Richmond etc by large margins

And now we lose to TCU after a home loss to Okie State

What has caused this dramatic collapse?

What has changed?

A lot of questions but no clear answer?

Jonathan Allison 6 years, 3 months ago

I've been asking that same question since the Texas Tech game.

nuleafjhawk 6 years, 3 months ago

Well, my best guess is that this team thought they were invincible, found out they were not and can't handle it mentally.

We are our own worst enemy now, nobody has any confidence. Speaking strictly for myself, they won't get any sympathy. This is KANSAS - you are expected to win. You must be good or you wouldn't be here. Get off your sorry butts, quit feeling sorry for yourselves and QUIT thinking - just PLAY. You're overthinking so much that you can't even make layups and free throws anymore.

Dirk Medema 6 years, 3 months ago

RussRob LEARNED toughness, but he was a whiny B as a frosh.

Kyle Sybesma 6 years, 3 months ago

Conspiracy Theory: HCBS is an intense coach and the players are weak minded. They didn't like it and in the three hour meeting on Sunday they convinced HCBS to soften his coaching style. I noticed during time outs during the TCU game he didn't do his patented fist over the mounth and scream at the guys til he turned red in the face. The players think they know better than the eight straight Big 12 champion coach.

They played tight in the first half as if they didn't want to make a mistake which caused more mistakes. HCBS has a big decision to make. Does he get intense with them which could make them tighter or go soft with them hoping it losens them up? Either decision could back fire. Self needs to know what kind of guys he has to get the most out of them. Something he been a master of over the last 20 years.

eastcoasthawk 6 years, 3 months ago

Pretty much agree with the rankings as if they mattered after a game like this. How in the hell are EJ and Tharpe jacking up more shots combined than Withey, Releford and McLemore? Withey looked lost many times out there. Releford was afraid to shoot. Ben just had a bad night shooting. Frustrating. I'm afraid the book is clearly written on how to beat this team.

Ryan Michael 6 years, 3 months ago

Probably because every time they try to pass the ball to Withey, McLemore, and Releford, those guys defer and pass the ball right back.

Those guys are getting touches... They are just not taking any shots. That's not on Johnson/Tharpe, that's on the guys who are too scared to shoot. (Releford especially)

Jason Wilson 6 years, 3 months ago

Releford is just as big an offensive problem as Johnson is right now. I'd rather a guy take his open looks and miss than be too scared to even shoot.

Dirk Medema 6 years, 3 months ago

Exactly. Giving up 20 pts and only getting up one shot in 30+ minutes is far worse than EJ.

Scott Smetana 6 years, 3 months ago

Looking at the bright side... It's a good time of the year to have problems.
We're still leading the Big 12. Being ranked lower will only help motivate. We've got an amazing coach. If anyone can pull us out of a nosedive, he can. Don't forget we were in the finals last year, lets not get spoiled. Mizzery stinks this year and will only get worse.
We've got an amazing recruiting class next year. There, I feel better.

Steve Kubler 6 years, 3 months ago

Horrid game, no other term for it that won't get removed. Now lets look at the bright, or at least not so dark spots.

EJ hit three big shots at the end of the game. That layup may have taken the lid off for him, particularly as he followed it up with two threes. That could very likely be all it takes to get him his mojo back.

McLemore showed he is not superman, perhaps his stock will drop enough for him to stay another year. Doubt it really but I am grasping here!

Naadir showed energy and the ability to take over the game in short stretches. If he can be smarter on his shot choices his future will be much brighter than I for one thought possible a year ago.

Oh, and no one got hurt, other than their pride!

conlawgrad 6 years, 3 months ago

I'm starting to question coach Bill Self. He has never had favorites on any of his teams. He would pull a player and punish that player in practice if they did not perform well but all Self wants to do is BELIEVE that Perry is getting better and that EJ is his man. Sit them on the bench where they belong until they figure out if they reallyy want to start playing. For some reason coach's instructions aren't getting through to them to make better decisions in the game and that has to be on the coach. Self has never been afraid to call out his players until this year and that's not working...

Hank Cross 6 years, 3 months ago

You're kidding about Self not having favorites, right? See, Morningstar, Brady.

Hank Cross 6 years, 3 months ago

Withey may have been the best of the worst last night, but he might have cost himself millions of dollars. He got shoved around by smaller players, players the size of NBA small forwards. That's not a personal knock on him, but it looks doubtful that he can physically compete with NBA bigs.

PSM 6 years, 3 months ago

Jesse-I thought starting Ellis instead of Young affected the outcome as well. I think Kevin would have brought much needed energy out of the gate, and Perry was a ghost out there. We'll never know, but Young could have hustled for an offensive rebound or two and gotten KU some early points.

Tim Chappell 6 years, 3 months ago

  1. In no way was Withey best last night. He is sooooo slow hedging on the ball screen and then basically walks back to the paint. He got beat on lack of effort at least twice on that alone. The number of rebounds he should have had that went to TCU, crazy. He got pushed out of the lane and didn't even try to lower down and use his hips for positioning. Everyone stunk last night, but in my opinion, Withey would not be in the top three. #2. The team will go only as far as the leader, and we don't have one. Elijah seems determined to shoot his way out of his slump. Instead, he should drive and dish to Withey like he had two almost in a row in the second half. Then, when they collapse on Withey, he can make an uncontested layup. Which will lead to jumpers and 3's. Rather than just hoisting up shot after shot. #3. And can someone other than Ben drive left and make a basket. Straight down the left side of the lane is open all night long. A couple of others tried it but they are obviously not comfortable driving left and then making the easy shot. I say hand the PG starting spot to Tharpe. He and Ben were the only ones playing with any heart last night as far as I could tell.

lifelongKUfan 6 years, 3 months ago

Why is Releford afraid to shoot the ball? How many open looks did he turn down in the last 2 games? And his defense has been off as well -- his man has been the opponents' leading scorer each of the last 2 games. Is he sick?

KGphoto 6 years, 3 months ago

This list is putrid. Throw it out. All points should be donated to the fans who had to endure watching that game.

KUbsee69 6 years, 3 months ago

How about we give some props to Garrett, Manning, and Tyler Self. Afterall, they didn't miss a single shot, commit any fouls, or have any turn-overs!

Jack Wilson 6 years, 3 months ago

Releford shouldn't have even been rate. 1 shot? 36 minutes? The absolute most disappointing player last night, and vs. OSU.

SaltLakeHawk 6 years, 3 months ago

I just don't get Releford. If Lebron stole Harry Potter's invisibility cloak, he'd be Travis Releford.

He's an amazing player at both ends of the floor, with an equally amazing ability to completely disappear.

Jack Brooks 6 years, 3 months ago

Haha! I think we have Releford's new nickname: "The Magician", for his amazing ability to make himself disappear.

Robert Brock 6 years, 3 months ago

What was Coach thinking with Ellis? He does not need to start or play more than 10 minutes. PE is just not ready to play this year.

Steve Corder 6 years, 3 months ago

Jesse, were you at that game?

Withey was horrendous, bungling, and totally dominated physically. I was at that game and if you're going to rank these players this way then cast a net across half court and then we can see Withey at his best.

Nice job Ben, that dunk at the horn when it didn't matter shows you're ready to sky with the big boys next year, but where were you in the first half with that play?

Jesse, you should have "passed" on this weekly newspaper filler. "Top Ratings" seriously?

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