Thursday, March 5, 2009

Unhappy champs

Despite loss, KU nabs title

KU's Marcus Morris holds a towel over his head as the Jayhawks fall to Texas Tech on Wednesday, March 4, 2009 at United Spirit Arena in Lubbock, Texas.

KU's Marcus Morris holds a towel over his head as the Jayhawks fall to Texas Tech on Wednesday, March 4, 2009 at United Spirit Arena in Lubbock, Texas.


Audio clips

2009 KU-TTU March 4

— Heads bowed as they exited their United Spirit Arena locker room, Kansas University’s basketball players boarded their team bus late Wednesday night as five-time Big 12 champions.

“Yeah, I’m ecstatic,” KU coach Bill Self said sarcastically after the No. 9-ranked Jayhawks’ 84-65 blowout loss to a Texas Tech team that entered an apparent mismatch with a 12-17 record, 2-12 in league play.

“It’s what I told our guys in the locker room. I said, ‘Congratulations, we won the league and got beat by 19,’’’ Self added.

“It’s pretty remarkable a team could perform as poorly as we did tonight and was able to be 13-2 and clinch a tie and can win it outright on Saturday.”

The Jayhawks — who were victimized by a career-high 35 points by Alan Voskuil on a night Sherron Collins and Cole Aldrich combined for 19 points off miserable 4-for-24 shooting — were guaranteed at least a piece of the crown thanks to Missouri’s victory over Oklahoma on Wednesday.

KU (13-2 compared to OU’s and MU’s 12-3 marks) can win it outright with a victory over Texas on Saturday in Allen Fieldhouse. No matter what happens, KU, because of tiebreakers, is guaranteed the No. 1 seed for next week’s Big 12 tournament.

“It really doesn’t feel like it,” Aldrich said of KU claiming another title. “We just didn’t play our game. We couldn’t buy a shot, and they couldn’t miss.”

Aldrich missed an inside layup try five minutes into the second half that actually could have brought KU all the way back from an 18-point deficit (39-21).

Instead he missed, Brady Morningstar missed a three, and Tech moments later, with the score 43-41, embarked on an 11-2 run to up its lead back to 54-43. Voskuil had hit two free throws in that run off a technical foul on Self, a ‘T’ Self said was “deserved.”

“I missed shots tonight I make 99 percent of the time,” said Aldrich, who hit one of five shots and six of six free throws. “It was really frustrating all the way around.”

KU did slice the gap to a workable three points, 57-54, at 8:27. But Nick Okorie hit a three, then after Collins and Tyrel Reed missed threes, Marcus Morris not only was called for a foul, but a technical foul, apparently for barking at a ref.

Voskuil hit the two resultant free throws and Okorie two charities, and Tech again was in business at 64-54.

“You should never get a T,’’ Self said. “I deserved my T. I know what the official said what Marcus did. It was something not confirmed by our players. I deserved mine. I thought he blew the call. I thought it was a big deal. T’s don’t usually come at opportune times. I don’t think it cost us the game tonight. They didn’t help us in any way, shape or form.”

Self said, “I won’t go into it,” when asked what the ref said Morris said.

Morris said: “My coaches talked to me about it and told me I’ve got to stop being so emotional. No words came out of my mouth. It was just the emotion I was in. I guess that’s what happened.”

Self had a lot of words to describe the loss.

“Our whole team collectively played very very poor. All around, coaching, execution, everything was poor,” Self said. “They whipped us in every capacity.”

Collins had a tough night, obviously, considering he missed 16 of 19 shots and nine of 10 threes.

“Going 3-for-19 he couldn’t throw it in the ocean. When you have your other players play so poorly we couldn’t even sub them ... we should not point to one player as far as poor play. I could point to a lot of different reasons we played poorly,” Self said.

KU’s perimeter defense was lacking big-time. Tech made 15 of 27 threes.

“Playing H-O-R-S-E, 15-of-27 is pretty acceptable,” Self said. “Cause that’s what they were playing. If defended, 15 of 27 is unbelievable. It’s as good as a team can shoot.

“I don’t know Voskuil at all ... Senior Day probably means something to him,” he added, noting it was fitting the senior threw in his final two trey tries down the stretch with the small crowd of 9,883 making a lot of noise.

The Jayhawks will go for the undisputed league title versus Texas at 3 p.m. Saturday in Allen Fieldhouse.

“I think if we lost we needed one like this,” Collins said. “We were feeling pretty good about ourselves. We have to get back to work and try to win it outright on Saturday.”


Lin Rahardja 13 years, 3 months ago

Let's face it, we took them lightly... KU players might be taller, but it didn't show during the game. They burned our mano a mano defense. Should have use the triangle zone and two to guard their good guards.

nobodylikesmizzou 13 years, 3 months ago

On another note, even though I know it will never happen, please kill me if we have less than 10,000 people at Senior Night...unreal

NebraskaJayhawk 13 years, 3 months ago

Well put, Drgnslayr. Couldn't agree more.

I seriously hope there is not a bunch of referee bashing from Kansas fans. We flat out got spanked last night by a sub-par team that wanted to win more than the #9 team in the nation did.

It is hard to imagine at this time in the season we could come out of the gates flat like we did last night. Did they not think they would get the best effort out of Texas Tech.? It didn't help that Collins laid more bricks last night than a mason typically does in a days work. I'm not sure how good we are without Collins next year. When he is out of stride, so is the rest of the team. Same type of game against UMass earlier in the season. Nonetheless, we pretty much got beat in every aspect of the game.

By the way Mr. Aldrich...despite having a rough game, it was nice to see someone on the court take a call (good or bad) from the referee with some class. You are a pleasure to watch win or lose.

RawkChawkJHawk 13 years, 3 months ago

I hate it. I hate to say I told you so. I mean, given the outcome, I really, REALLY hate to say I told you so. But this is what I was talking about in my post yesterday when I suggested this is exactly what could happen down there. What did we expect going on the road to face a blood thirsty, desperate team with nothing to lose on senior night that was looking for revenge for last year? They got their revenge. Our guys played like crap. As I said yesterday, I really, really wish the PLAYERS and the COACH had been talking a lot LESS about when and how and to what degree they were going to celebrate in the locker room in Lubbock depending on the outcome of the MU-OU game, and a hell of a lot MORE about how they were going to stop Texas Tech. I couldn't believe the whole group was planning a victory party before they planned to show up and play. Our guys absolutely looked past this one. And it cost them. They have to take EVERY team seriously because every team gives Kansas its best shot. Lesson learned.

Jay Skinner 13 years, 3 months ago

Hey! They got to celebrate in somebody else's locker room last night.

Michael Pannacciulli 13 years, 3 months ago

That was a disaster of game. I saw a look of frustration and panic on Self's face early on when he was chewing Morningstar before a commercial. They were tight, looking ahead, sloppy! You certainly can't blame this one on a hostile environment!

When will Morris understand that his actions do in fact affect games!?!?! My goodness. By now you NEED to know that.

Not indicative of the season this far this loss...but we need to be peaking and playing better ball now as we inch closer to the madness! Let's get it going fellas!

rockchalkin54 13 years, 3 months ago

"I saw a look of frustration and panic on Self's face early"

That right there, coupled with the fact that Sherron and Cole had a bad night and panicked, is why we lost. Look at the K-game and the OU game. We were down badly in the first half, but Coach, Sherron, and Cole did not panic. They panicked last night, and that caused the rest of the team to panic, and we were done for.

Jason Musick 13 years, 3 months ago

Everyone has to understand..They KU played 4 games in 7 days. They were tired and did not want to be their. TT played 2 games. If you are a true KU Fan..Let this game go.This game don't mean a hill if beans to anyone. Get TT away from home and they can't win a game. There season is over after last night.


kansasYEA 13 years, 3 months ago

I had a bad feeling about this game from the start, not even any hustle from Brady-- that's a bad sign. Absolutely no energy. And Cole has never looked so white. I love Cole, but I don't think he needed to be on the floor the majority of the game- he was just hurting us. So slow!

KWufan 13 years, 3 months ago

Who cares about Texas Tech, jesus. We had the conference wrapped up, they are NOT any rival of ours, of course we were going to come out flat. Big deal we lost a game, yeah it was to a team with a poor record but that's what happens when Sherron doesn't pass the ball to ANYBODY when he's 3 of 19. PATHETIC dude, that was just pathetic. Anyhow, screw this game thorwaway game, let's hope Tyshawn and Cole are healthy for the real games we get to play now.

Jonathan Allison 13 years, 3 months ago

4 games in 7 days?

They played OU on Monday, didn't play again until Sunday (6 days), then they were off Monday and Tuesday, and played Wednesday. That by my count is three games in 9 days.

Bad shooting nights happen. It happened for Mizzou on Sunday, it happened to Texas Tech last year in Lawrence, and it happened to us last night. Yet despite that we had the lead cut to three points more than once in the second half and just couldn't get over the hump. There would be a technical foul, or Tech would knock in a three, and the lead would stretch back out. Sometimes they say that a loss can help a team. I think that the Mizzou loss may have helped us, but this loss is just plain bad. The team comes out and can hit the broad side of a barn, and just gets lit up repeatedly.

Congrats to Tech on a big Senior night win. You deserved it more than Kansas deserved to clinch a 5th straight Big 12 crown.

We'll see how we respond on Saturday. I do NOT want to be in a tie with Mizzou.

KU 13 years, 3 months ago

"KU, meet 4 Seed." Still, if you had told me at the beginning of the year that we would win the league and be in position to be one of the top 16 teams in the country I would have taken it in a heartbeat.

What is it Coach Self says? There are going to be 5 games a year where you play lights out and can beat anybody in the country. Then there are going to be 5 games a year where you play horribly and can get beat by any team in the country. When KU played its worst and TT played its best game of the year, it was a perfect storm.

jayhawkinATL 13 years, 3 months ago

The replays of Marcus' "T" didn't show anything except him squeezing the ball and grimacing. It sure didn't look like he said anything...pretty lame call if you ask me.

exiledhawkfan 13 years, 3 months ago

A couple thoughts... 1. I know Cole didn't play well in general, but we only got him enough touches for 5 shots? Unacceptable for one of our two best players. This is only magnified by the fact Collins took 19 of his own. 2. When you lose by 19, the refereeing simply can not be looked to as a factor in you you lost. Period. We just got our butts beat. 3. Kubigban, it's "did not want to be THERE" and "a hill OF beans". Rock chalk, and lets get it done Saturday...

Martin Rosenblum 13 years, 3 months ago

To paraphrase (and revamp) a line from a Gary Bedore article earlier in the week about Tyrone Appleton not making the trip due to illness: .."thus the team's swagger and spirit remained in Lawrence". Maybe,Tyrone is the spiritual leader or something. Let's not ever leave him behind again even if he has to have IV's for the road trip! Or, maybe we need to have Kirk and Nick attend all of the rest of our games!

Joe Joseph 13 years, 3 months ago

As embarrassing as that was, all will be forgotten if KU can just win on Saturday.

keith horinek 13 years, 3 months ago

there's something in the water in Lubbock. that's three losses in three trips. I agree the team looked liked they were looking past TTU. we were out hustled, out coached, (it's hard to say that, but I really believe Pat Knight had his players ready) and out referee'd. If our team leaders take this loss and use it to their advantage, we wil be ready for UT on saturday. we canstill win the big 12 outright with a win on saturday. this loss hurts but if youput it all in perspective, OU lost and probably lost their no. one seed in the NCAA T. as well. everything this team does from now on this season will be gravy asthey were only picked fourth inthe big 12. I still think we will get a respectable seed in the NCAA.

Robert Brock 13 years, 3 months ago

"Who cares about Texas Tech...". Well, they have beaten us on their floor in "05, '07, and, now, '09. Maybe that is why they scheduled us for Senior Night.

craigers 13 years, 3 months ago

This team has done extremely well so far in the conference and had a bad game. Give them a break!

jayhawkintexas 13 years, 3 months ago

They played like freshmen and sophomores last night--even Sherron and Cole. We have UT on Saturday and Abrams can light up the scoreboard just like Voskuil did. Also, expect to have two UT big men on Cole whenever he gets the ball just like TT did. No oubt that TT played a great game last night and we stunk up the place but the thing that killed us last night was complacency and we had better get our heads into the game on Saturday otherwise it will be a repeat performance from last night. The crowd needs to be into the game, the players need to be into the game and the coaches need to coach a great game.

barackchalkjhawk 13 years, 3 months ago

Letdown game, it happens. Better now than in two weeks. Now let's take it out on Texas this Saturday. Any word on Cole's ankle?

OutWestNEHawk 13 years, 3 months ago

Welcome back to reality. A relatively young team that got kicked around like a dirty sock. We'll see the real composition of this team against Texas on Saturday AND in the Big Dance. The sky isn't falling, rather, this is a slap in the face that should make everyone realize KU isn't invincible.

mandomax 13 years, 3 months ago

The guards were able to feed Cole relatively consistently, but TTech always had a double team waiting for him down there. Cole could have had four to five more assists had his teammates been knocking down the shots he fed them off the double team. I thought Cole did as well as he has done all season kicking the ball out of double teams.

55.7 percent from three says a lot about why we lost this game. Sometimes, teams can just light it up. 33% from the FIELD says even more about why we lost this game. We'll fight back. I hope those kids are pumped for the TX game at home, and we show some fireworks on our Senior Night.

KGphoto 13 years, 3 months ago

That's what happens when you get a little cocky. When you start believing you are good enough. When you start looking down the road at tourney seeds.

You lose your super powers. Sherron lost his Tron. Cole lost his Train.

Senior night in someone else's house is certainly the wrong nite to be Clark Kent.

BCRavenJHawkfan 13 years, 3 months ago

The sixtyfour thousand dollar question is..... Have this loss now or in the first round of the big dance to a 15 seed?

This unpleasant feeling had better get so far up their a$$es because this is what happens at tournament time. Unknowns get hot, and if you don't answer the bell you go home.

It was mentioned that the officiating was not to blame. I agree, it was poor on both sides. But I will say this, the officiating was right up Bob Knight alley (I know his son is Tech's coach). The calls were so tight on the perimeter that over time it created the space for Voskuil and his Jerry Macnamara (Syracuse '04) impersonation.

And now I have to face my co-workers......I work for Texas Tech.

Joel Hood 13 years, 3 months ago

No one wants a loss - but I believe this loss might be like the OSU loss last year. A reality check that ultimately helps them get focused and mad. But, this is still a very young team and it might hurt their confidence in tight situations. I'd wager they come out fired up Saturday and ready to leave it all on the floor. Go Hawks.

JayJayPG 13 years, 3 months ago

Hats the Texas Tech players for their level of play last night. You could tell right from the tip that they were ready to play. They endured two big runs from KU and they were just insane from beyond the arc.

Shame on...Texas Tech fans for not filling those seats to witness an amazing performance (especially by Voskuil). I couldn't believe how empty that arena was on Senior night versus a top 10 team. I hate to think how many fans (if any) show up for a regular conference game against a mediocre/poor team.

Daniel Cummings 13 years, 3 months ago

Telling moment early in last night's game....loose ball under the Tech basket....Cole is reaching for it as it rolls in front of his feet much like a football player trying to swoop up a fumble on the fly and run with it. 99 times out of a 100, Cole is hurling his body recklessly on the loose ball....but not last night. I don't mean to pick on Cole but, let's face it, the Hawks didn't have the intensity or, as Roy used to say, the "want to" last night from the get-go. If something good can be salvaged from an embarrassing 19 point blow-out loss to a conference bottom-dweller, HCBS will find it and exploit it, I'm sure.

BCRavenJHawkfan 13 years, 3 months ago

JayJay, It was a shame the game was so poorly attended, it wasn't because the tickets were not sold.

justanotherfan 13 years, 3 months ago

Texas Tech shot lights out. They came out on fire, we made a run, they got hot again, we made a run, they got hot again and finished us off. That's it.

Last night's game shows what happens when one team is hot and the other isn't. Even when we were scraping back into the game, we weren't shooting very well. Nobody on the roster played all that well, really. Taylor had some nice moments, but was a nonfactor for most of the game. Releford had a good stretch, but then didn't get many more minutes after a couple bad plays. Mc. Morris had a pretty good game, but the T hurt us. Reed didn't shoot it well. Brady didn't shoot it well, and is recovering in ICU from the scorching Voskul laid on him. Aldrich looked lost when they doubled down on him. And Sherron did not have it last night at all. Wasn't even close.

That said, I'm glad we got that stink bomb out of our system now as opposed to in two weeks.

jayhwkr77 13 years, 3 months ago

Embarassing performance last night. One of Self's top 10 losses since he has been here. Clearly tech wanted it more, and KU was ready to celebrate before the game started. I have never seen such a lackluster performance from the two best players on a team. That being said, this could be exactly what they needed. ESPN and journalists all over the country began to praise us and it got to their head. Hopefully, they can turn it around and have a respectable end to the season heading into next year. Rock Chalk.

Drew Bender 13 years, 3 months ago

“I missed shots tonight I make 99 percent of the time,” said Aldrich, who hit one of five shots and six of six free throws. “It was really frustrating all the way around.”

A question for Cole - How often do you make those shots from behind the backboard??? Is it just me or does it sometimes just seem that Cole gets lost on where he's at around the basket... I know he got fouled on the play but he was still in no position to make that shot unless he was going to shoot over the backboard like Larry Bird

Jim Pendleton 13 years, 3 months ago

I seem to have this same thought a few times a year. Why do players come out and say they weren't ready to play? I have never understood why that would be the case, particularly late in the season with still lots to play for. After all, you only have so many games to play and at this point, there aren't many left.

Continuing to take care of business on a game by game basis should be this team's first priority. Not rankings, not what seed we'll have in a couple weeks. After you just took care of the two teams you needed to beat to get a leg up in the conference, how can you come out and say you weren't ready to play?

It is apparent that everyone has been paying too much attention to all the accolades being thrown at them from all directions. Thanks also to the media for throwing out comments like, how did KU get this good so fast, or KU looks Final Four good. This doesn't help either. Need to have less of this and more of the coaches telling them how reality is in this business.

Yes in the grand scheme of things this has been a great year. Another conference title (hopefully outright after Saturday), a number one seed in the conference tourney (yes that was clinched last night despite the loss), and some really good wins (Wash, Siena, Tenn, Okla, Mo, KSU twice to name a few).

The '06 team didn't start out well, but finished strong. But if we learned anything from that team, anything can happen if you don't come to play, and despite a strong finish, they got taken out by a hot Bradley team (who was obviously underseeded based on their second round win as well). The guys need to buy in to what the coaches are telling them every night, and bring it strong each and every game. Let's hope the next time we are talking about a loss like this, it was because we lost to a better team and not because guys said we weren't ready to play.

To repeat my line from last week, the crowd needs to come ready again this Saturday. Be loud, wear blue, and don't sell your tickets to UT fans. The crowd was awesome last Sunday, let's do it again Saturday. Rock Chalk!!!

Brian Skelly 13 years, 3 months ago

Folks, I think we knew this game had "trap" written all over it.

And in the end, it was by its very definition a trap game. Pathetic all around.

That said, we need to get over it quick and get ready for Texas.

We need to win the conference outright.

Matt1958 13 years, 3 months ago

Any team can have a horrible shooting night. We wouldn't guard. That is the part that bothers me.

63Jayhawk 13 years, 3 months ago

I was at the game. Even though the paid attendance was 9,883, there were no where near that many people in the arena. It was probably more like 4,000-5,000. The support that Tech gets from the fans is pitiful!

KUPROUD 13 years, 3 months ago

How about those lady jayhawks? Great win, ladies. And oh yes, the men "won" a tie for league. It's been a good year, and will be a great year if we take care of business against Texas. Get some rest for the weary legs and be ready to shoot and battle. The real season is just beginning. RockChalk

Chris Seferyn 13 years, 3 months ago

don't worry too much folks - KU will be out for blood this sat against UT. It's Kleinmann's going away party and it will be a love fest. Texas is not good. Abrams is stellar but its too easy to just take one player out of the game. OSU did it pretty simply with Eaton just shadowing him. Texas has been better with the Turkish guy playing but he can't shoot. Their huge guy will pick up some cheap points against our skinny front line but bottom line KU will fart around sat for a half and then win by 12-15. They won't drill Texas but all we need is a W. We could end up a 2 seed with our favorable B12 tourney schedule. The pieces have fallen in place for this young team - easy early conf schedule, Griffin out, favorable schedule, overall weakness of the league, etc. The bad losses like this one might move us to a 3 seed. Let's watch and enjoy... remember the entire tourney we're the defending champs. They will replay that over and over (the shot).

also - NO BILLY PACKER THIS YEAR! No more moronic analysis from the insurance salesman from Indy. If DICKIE V would retire then we could watch games with the sound on again...

jayhawkcat 13 years, 3 months ago

Lesson learned, we can lose to anyone. Maybe this is a good loss. Sometimes it takes a jolt to get your mine back in the game. Their ok, just keep up the good work.

kyushujet 13 years, 3 months ago

TT basketball has been pitiful this year (compared to the football team), so I really haven't been following it much. I thought KU would come back in the 2nd half after seeing the 2 easy dunks KU had at the beginning of the period and TT would lose much like they did in Austin. But for Tech to not to lose their composure, and hang on for a blow out win against the defending national champs is the lone bright spot in a dismal year. Hopefully TT can build on this win for next year, and KU can use this loss to propel them deep in the tourney. Good luck. Btw, why does KU have so much trouble against Tech in LBB? KU also lost to Tech in 99 in LBB when they were ranked 24th and Tech had a 11-13 record, which would make KU 2-4 in LBB.

Joe Joseph 13 years, 3 months ago

Kansas played its way out of a one-seed last night, but did it also play its way out of a two-seed?

Two losses to two terrible teams in UMASS & Texas-Tech look awful on a resume.

jaybate 13 years, 3 months ago

“I think if we lost we needed one like this. We were feeling pretty good about ourselves. We have to get back to work and try to win it outright on Saturday.”--Sherron Collins after the loss to TTech

These words may seem simple and appropriate, even a little canned to some, but they were spoken by a 20 year old immediately following a terrible personal performance and a terrible team loss. Many persons cannot speak this clearly and insightfully even when things went only just a little bit bad. Sherron shows great character and maturity of insight in the midst of a debacle; this is the sign of a winner and a leader. Perhaps last year's late season upset by Okie State is helping him process the loss and speak insightfully.

But Sherron is the only person, or coach, in these quotes of this story exhibiting what is increasingly referred to as a high Emotional IQ.

Cole, a greener player than Sherron, mostly exhibits high emotional IQ after losses, but there have been a few games after which he seemed overwhelmed and unable to process the failure into a tool for getting better, i.e., a weapon for future success. It is why Cole has had longer stretches of building back up to his best than Sherron has tended to experience. Sherron is getting better from the moment the failure occurs. Cole sometimes takes longer to start getting better.

Tyshawn has pretty high emotional IQ. He just has some mechanical and psychological deficiencies in his game that take some time to overcome.

The Twins exhibit some high emotional IQ and some exceedingly low emotional IQ. The part where they are high and to be praise for being so, is that they keep coming back for more. They have a deep reserve of character and self-confidence about who they are, probably flowing from the strong and protective Mother Morris, that they persevere from the enormous difficulties they experience in this trial by fire of the freshman big man playing big minutes in D1.

But the Twins response to adversity in the moment tends to evidence very low emotional IQ. They are learning, but only very, very slowly, getting emotionally down or persecuted, or angry out of control, are themselves failures that a warrior must read as sign posts pointing to what must be mastered. They must learn not to be victims of their own emotions in the moment, even when they are beaten by another warrior.

True warriors use an opponent's self-destructive emotions as a weapon against them again and again.

jaybate 13 years, 3 months ago

Nutshelled, high Emotional IQ refers to how quickly and constructively one deals with the experience of failing. Persons with high emotional IQ take failure very hard, as most do, but almost immediately, unlike most, transform the pain into a driver to work and get better. And the words "work on" are not just words. Mastery empowers. Mastery without work is unfeasible. Work on mechanics that were mis-performed requires work to get the mastery to get the empowerment to be a total warrior. Even positive mental attitude--make that especially positive mental attitude--requires work, before it can be achieved and the empowerment of mastery can be turned into a weapon.

True warriors use the empowerment of mastery as a weapon.

Coach Self, who normally also exhibits a very high emotional IQ, even in the midst of crises, usually expresses his emotional IQ in his reminders to think always about the next play, or the next game. He process failure pretty open and honestly, which is a virtue, but he also usually weds the description of that processing with "to get better and ready for the next opponent." He usually lays down a clear program almost immediately of what the team has to get better at for the next game. I did not hear that from him in these quotes and that is rare.

This game the team played so poorly in so many regards that even the masterful coach couldn't process it all in the moment and pick out something definite to get better at, though guarding three point shooters was clearly high on his list! :-)

Sherron seems to have learned from the coach. Coach may need to let Sherron's behavior remind him to focus on next this time.


jaybate 13 years, 3 months ago

The loss was a bitter one, and perhaps the team needs to know their coach is not pleased, but Coach Self needs to take his own advice after this one, because there is only a two day turnaround before the Texas game day.

There is no time to lose getting better. Someone above said memorably flush and forget. They are partly right. They recognize that too much went wrong to focus on everything and they realize that the next game is imminent. Still, I do not think a true warrior can ever waste the opportunity to weaponize a loss like this one. There are only two days to get better. But some drills on getting out and guarding three point shooters today, plus some exaggerated drills of fighting through 8-10 guys trying to screen them getting to the 3 point shooter would be good, also. This team has not liked defending frequent screening offenses all season. After this loss, they will see frequent screening again, but even if they don't it will empower them to get over their dislike of it by desensitizing them to it.

Coach Self might also make a mock drill in which each guy grabs the rebound Self throws off the glass, then gets pushed gently in the chest by Coach Manning, then Coach Dooley in zebra stripes whistles not Manning but the player for a foul, then the player turns and hands the ball to Coach Dooley smiles, breaks down the court and is fed at the other end for a roaring slam dunk! Lesson: do not let the zebras take away your game.

True warriors turn bad calls into a weapon.

The rest of this game, I agree with the poster above, should be flushed due to short turnaround time.

Maybe also post Michael Jordan's great quote about failure.

"I have missed 9000 shots. I have lost 300 games. I am a success, because I keep failing."

jaybate 13 years, 3 months ago

Michael Jordan became the biggest winner who ever anchored teams from the back court by living this crucially truthful paradox, not just talking it. It gave his self-confidence the hardness of a diamond and it minimized his fear of the pain of failure. It made failure the sign post to excellence, rather than the exit sign to defeat.

Michael Jordan understood that great success and great failure are two sides of the coin of the realm of winning. Talent and competitive greatness make one side of the coin bigger--make them come up more often, but the true warriors and ultimate winners experience horrendous failure, too, on all levels of play and in all aspects of play. Yet they are the ones who turn failure itself into an advantage--no, make that a weapon.

True warriors make even failure a weapon.

To beat Michael Jordan at anything--from a first step on the dribble, to a loose ball, to position on a rebound, to a game-deciding shot, to a final score--was to realize that you had just made Michael Jordan aware of one of the few remaining ways that you could beat him. It was to realize that the next time you played him he would have plugged that hole with excellence that you could not beat the next time. It was to realize that beating him actually made him harder, not easier, to beat the next time.

Winning made him better, because he learned what worked on you. Beating him made him better, because he learned an advantage he could take away from an opponent. I suspect at some point, Michael Jordan even learned how to weaponize breaking even.

True warriors make failure a weapon.

True warriors make everything a weapon.

jaybate 13 years, 3 months ago

Sherron's quote shows he was doing just that and that is why I believe the combination of Sherron's talent and his high emotional IQ will take him farther than most persons realize.

Please do not confuse Sherron's high emotional IQ with knowing everything about his emotions, or his game, yet. He is 20 or so years old. It is his first year as a starter. It is his first year as the number one option. With more experience and work, he would have been able to avoid, or at least minimize the valley that he let himself and his team fall into vs. TTech. With more experience and work, he would have on a cold shooting night for the team forced the ball into the bigs more often. He would have put it on Tyshawn that he had to go to the rim every time he dished Tyshawn the ball. With more experience and work, he would probably have understood that Brady needed a big fat chewing out in the middle of the floor to get him pissed enough to play, instead of getting benched by Self. With more work and experience, he probably would have said to Marcus, "This game is yours, I can't hit deer droppings and Cole is off, too; this is the time when a rook breaks out late in the season and saves the vets. I am bringing you the ball, because I trust you." Then he would have shot him a grin and said, "Make me look good, or I'm stealing your woman tomorrow."

Henry Ford, who went bankrupt 6 times before successfully getting Ford up and running, said he actually enjoyed failure, because it gave him a chance to get things organized correctly that he would not otherwise have had time to correct. He was turning failure into a tool of his success, rather than into a nail in his coffin. He was weaponizing failure.

True warriors turn everything into a weapon.

And they start immediately when the next game is three days away.

not_important 13 years, 3 months ago

A #1 seed was a long shot at best before last night. The loss last night probably costs us a #2 seed unless we win the conference tournament now. Along those same lines, the KC first/second round site is gone. We had a shot of jumping past Oklahoma and being able to play 45 minutes from Lawrence, but even if we win the conference tournament, I still don't think we can wrestle that site from OU after losing to Texas Tech. And after having the Minneapolis site locked up, it is now in play again. We are very close to being shipped off to Boise or Portland as a 3 seed and end up with Gonzaga or something as a 6 with an arena full of their fans. Just an absolutely horrendous loss last night.

Yes, it may not mean anything to our conference championship if we play well Saturday, but you can't lose to a team rated 135 in the RPI and not have it affect you. We would have been better off losing to OU, having MU beat them like they did, and then tie for the conference than to lose to TT.

100 13 years, 3 months ago

Self: many midmajors play this style like TT (wide open motion offense).

There's a reason they've beat us 3 out of the last 4 times we've gone there.

Defensive Strategy: our strength in most other games (solid D) is turned into a weakness against teams like this.

They just spread us out and make us look like fools.

The answer is simple and you might quiz Danny on this because he knows the answer...

You have to force the point guard to dive into the lane. Otherwise their spread motion is free to go as it pleases. This is a simple strategy. Essentially you force the point guard one way or the other, rushing his decision making, and forcing him to use only half of the court. Saves us energy and the threes aren't as available.

Best of all it allows us back into our own rhthym.

They owned the rhythm last night. Just like Bucknell did. Just like Bradley.

Let's make that adjustment.


Jeff Hargate 13 years, 3 months ago

The worst part of this loss was we knew that for TTU to win they would have to shoot lights out from 3. I knew it, Self knew it, everyone knew it and we still could not stop them. I wish Self would pull a Roy and pull everyone out and throw in the scrubs. Put players in that are hungry and want to be out there.

This was the kind of game we will have in the dance...we are off and the other team can't miss. How will we handle it next time?

Trying to get 20 year olds to focus every game is easier said than done, but at some point they have to realize that they have to bring it every game.

exiledhawkfan 13 years, 3 months ago

jaybate, The only word I know to describe your writing is "prolific.

jncarlsbad 13 years, 3 months ago

I live in San Diego now and I heard after the game Collins was talking about celebrating the Big 12 title in another person's locker room. I love it, just because you've been scoring 20 points a game doesn't make you unstoppable. Collins is a great player but he's needs to get off his ego and someone needs to tell him he's not Chris Paul or Dwayne Wade. Those guys are the real deal, he is not yet.

This team played so out of synch last night that I"m scared for them during the tournament if they catch a hot shooting team. They better bring their A game next time because Texas would love nothing better than to mess up our Big 12 title in Lawrence.

Oh, and can someone tell me why Little can't come close to hitting a outside shot to save his life? I know he doesn't get many opportunities but his shots aren't even close for many games now. I thought he was suppose to be a shooter?

hawkshot 13 years, 3 months ago

BAD OFFENSE! BAD DEFENSE! BAD COACHING! BAD ATTITUDE! The best defensive play was when Roberson went down the lane uncontested. At least it wasn't a wide open three and we didn't foul! Bill needs to learn how to play a match-up zone or not play zone at all! His zone leaves too many wide open outside shots. Thats what we needed to shut down.

100 13 years, 3 months ago


Thanks for the sarcasm. Good stuff.

Listen, anyone who's been studying the team this year knows that spread we saw last night was nothing like anything we've seen this year.

Our coaching staff needs to work on a new strategy to handle these smaller precision teams. They control us -- the solution is simple but for a game, you have to back away from your usual defensive strategy.

Take a look at the tape. They scouted the heck out of us.

With a simple adjustment (the point defender), it knocks off everything they practiced for five days.

That's the best spread motion we've seen since Southern Illinois.

And we can beat it.

Lance Hobson 13 years, 3 months ago

Bad attitude is right. This game reminded me much of the Bradley game a few years ago, but at least it's behind us. We really need to win Saturday.

Congrats on winning the league! Rock Chalk!

cre017 13 years, 3 months ago

What does panic look like in Self's face? Is it the same as when he has his game face on? Does he frown or do his lips quiver? Self has the same expression on his face every game. Please don't tell me you can see panic and doubt on Coach Self's face if you really don't know the guy or you are not his wife, give me a break. This was a game we lost and could have lost several more just like it earlier this year. This team just played very young. Don't panic Jayhawks Saturday is going to be fun. At the end of the game this team will be one of the youngest to win a Big 12 title, "outright". Go Hawks! :) :< :{

kvskubball 13 years, 3 months ago


I agree that against a three point shooting team, you need to pressure them and make them drive the ball. Make them take a two instead of a three. Reed was backing off of Voskuil instead of being in his face. Was he afraid V. would drive on him????

Just a poor effort all the way around. I agree that this was like OSU last year. Came out flat and couldn't ever get enough momentum. Still it is only one game (Hey, after a loss like last night all we can do is be a little philosophical!)

Sometimes shooters are hot like V. for TT and cold like Sherron. V. should have and did keep shooting. Sherron should have realized that his shot wasn't there sometime before the game was over. He just never seemed to be in flow. Others were rushing shots too. When your shot isn't falling, drive the lane, get to the free throw line. I kept waiting for our guards to drive the ball more, TRel was the only one who did and he got two quick baskets in his limited time in.

Everyone was out of sync, why not put QT in earlier??? He has been calm when he went in, but Coach got in a funk and couldn't get out of it any more than the players. Stress sometimes causes tunnel-vision and that seemed to happen to everyone of KU's main guns last night. Hopefully it was just a brain-fart night....and we learn from it.

Beating Texas and at least getting to the Big XII tournament title game should keep us in the hunt for a 3 seed, but I think this stinker will probably cost us a two, unless we win out...

Keep on Rockin the Chalk, good and bad!!!

Let's go hog-tie us some Texas doggies!

Itstyler 13 years, 3 months ago

Did anyone else hear the commentators when they were talking about the 5-5 theory that someone jokingly made up? They said that in a given year a team will play 5 games above their ability/potential and also play 5 games below it. I wasn't paying a lot of attention to it when I heard it but afterwards it got me thinking about our team this year...interesting theory. I would chalk this game up to one of the games played below!

Tony Bandle 13 years, 3 months ago

Nice article about Bill Self on Yahoo Sports, whereby they list five, five man squads of coachs by achievement and Bill is #1 on the first squad. It's good to see that the rest of the country is recognizing what we all have been enjoying for months!!

kvskubball...I agree. I'm afraid a six loss team [unless your Puke, the Tarholes or from the Big Least], has a small chance at a number 2. Even so, it would appear that if Memphis keeps winning, they may have a chance at a #1 with OU getting the number 2 for KC and KU heading west.

Gosh this loss really hurts the seedings. If we win out, that would put us at 28-6, Big Twelve Champions and Tourney Champs. That might do it but can we count on this team to stay focused, especially for many of them, their first experience with consecutive multi-night games?

I just don't know. Still, what a wonderful surprise of a season and just wait till next year!!!!!

Nick Cole 13 years, 3 months ago



jayhawk02 13 years, 3 months ago

LOL trojan. That's what I was thinking. So if you force the point to one side, where he dishes off, then the wing/forward uses a skip pass back across the lane, you are right back where you started. For every defense, there is an offense that can beat it. The key is execution, and our players didn't execute last night---plain and simple.

100 13 years, 3 months ago


You're exactly right. Last night was an "off night" anyway.

But there's no reason to compound it. If our guys are out of sync, there's a reason.

The "sync" that everyone refers to is a very delicate matter. As a coach I saw this multiple times with my teams over two decades.

If your defensive strategy is wrong (and I'm guilty of choosing the wrong one myself for entire games too, only to see later on in the tape how easy it wouldve been to beat another way), generally your "offensive" sync will be off. Especially if your kids aren't confident about the strategy they're using.

And you could see it last night. All due credit to TT, because that was beautiful offense and they flat out beat us. But our guys (again look at the tape) were running around like chickens with their heads cut off on defense, waiting to get hit by a moving screen.

25 seconds later, they score. Always after wearing us down.

Which then translates to unconfident, rushed offense for us.

The answer to this problem is to ALWAYS let the point guard have an angle towards the paint. Make them do something they're not used to.

Make them drive and get into the paint. Take away half of the court by angle guarding. Seal the passing lanes. Take a charge. Rebound and go (like against MU).

kennethst 13 years, 3 months ago

All is well(not great) with our team.....lets face it they were probably due for a let down at some point. Better now than in the tournement that's for sure.

With that said I want to say one thing......It's definitely time to end the "Mario Little Experiment"!! This guy look completely lost....and I'm not sure he even knows what sport he's playing. Absolutely terrible player. He's not the reason we lost.....but he is one reason this team has ups and downs. People say he's the X-Factor??? No.....unless he is an XFactor to make the team worse!!! He should have redshirted, obviously. I seriously doubt he will make the team next year.

Blake Brown 13 years, 3 months ago

I thought we were beyond this kind of game which was shades of the blowouts in Arizona and Michigan State. I knew the "trap" nature of this game going in and the youthfulness that can take it for granted and just show up and then not put it together when the chips are down.

This was a team loss. Not good and indicative that we really do not have a team leader. And why do we not go back into the zone later in the 2nd half when it was responsible for getting us back into the game earlier?

This kind of play is what can take us out early in the tournaments coming up.

We have been playing to our competetion like the games in Lawrence against Iowa State and Nebraska and then elevating for Mizzou. Should not be a problem to get up for Texas. I expect a high intensity and physical game. We win outright!!

Go Hawks!!

Aaron Rosenthal 13 years, 3 months ago

I rarely post here. But I must say that I love seeing the general optimism and perspective about last night's KU loss. These kids have shown amazing growth and competitive nature all season. A loss like this was lurking in the weeds all year, though I didn't think Texas Tech would be the game.

KU has played with fire on the road all year. Down 26 - 13 at Nebraska, down 31 - 15 at K-State, down 22 - 8 at OU. Of course they erased those deficits fairly quickly and ultimately won the games. The Xs and Os of Tech's motion offense aside, KU's habit of falling into big holes on the road was going to burn them eventually.

Tech ran their stuff wonderfully last night. I almost thought Bobby Knight and Jarious Jackson were back. But there are two larger truths that transcend strategy in this case:

  1. No team plays its best every night. KU came off an intense, emotional week playing OU and Mizzou. Texas is looming next. The stands were half full. It's easier said than done for young players to be 100% locked in for such a game.

  2. Even bad Big 12 teams have scholarship Division I athletes. Would Texas Tech win a series over KU? Of course not. But the cliche about "no nights off on the road" is so true.

KU will play great on Saturday. I suspect Texas will too and we'll have another memorable Hawks-Horns March contest. And let's be honest, a 14 - 2 finish and another Big 12 title is shocking to contemplate for this team. I for one believe it will happen and we'll be left to ponder how amazing this group of players and coaches really is.

kennethst 13 years, 3 months ago

1bighawkfan-What is your opinion of Mario Little? I was pretty hard on him in my post.....what do you think?

jaybate 13 years, 3 months ago

Gotta disagree with the spread motion being the major problem.

The major problem was that the Knight's slid the spacing scale on KU big time.

There were stretches where the motion offense was being run with sharply shorter spacing; then there were stretches where they really stretched it out.

Whenever KU got used to narrow spacing, TT stretched it out; then vice versa.

Sliding the spacing scale really threw our guys sense of how to choose about how to negotiate the picks: through, up or under. They could never get used to where and how many picks would be waiting, because of the sliding scale of spacing.

Next, if I were Pat Knight, and 100 forced the point into the middle, the adjustment is fairly simple. Post man steps out and reinitiates. Same motion. Same spacing. Only a five second delay. Same plenty of time to run around for 25 seconds.

I think problem and solution lies in recognizing spacing. When TT runs close spacing switch to zone, because it nullifies all our athleticism anyway. When TT wants to spread it out, guard them out to the trey stripe, but switch all the time. Let them do the work.

eddiesuttonschoolofdriving 13 years, 3 months ago

Watching Danny Manning having to pull the ball out of Thing One's hands last night b/c he was nutting up kinda said it all about the twins development - 1 step backward for every 2 steps forward. Could somebody, ANYBODY, please tell Thing 1 and Thing 2 to start pushing people around with their body instead of their hands, its too late in the season not to have learned it and the ref's are completely sick of it too, which is hurting our squad.

jrbill67 13 years, 3 months ago

time for the Morris twins to show some maturity & basketball IQ; they are no longer freshmen; they play for KU & if they don't grow up fast, it's going to be a short post season.

kubball99 13 years, 3 months ago

kennethst - I have to completely disagree with your post about Mario Little. I would agree that he has looked lost at points this season, but there are some things you should consider. First, although he is considered a junior, he is as much of freshman as the Twins, Thomas, Taylor, etc. Not to mention, he missed a considerable number of games during the first half of the year; practice and game experience are two completely different things. Second, he is 6'5" playing the 4, which is not his natural position. He is much better suited to play out on the wing where he can create his own shot. I agree that he has not been consistent, but he has definitely shown signs of promise. To say he is an "Absolutely terrible player" is ridiculous. You're not the JUCO Player of the Year if that were the case. Obviously, Coach Self sees something in him. If Kansas had a dominate player at the 4 position and Little were allowed to play his natural position, I think he would development into a very solid player.

JayhawkLova7 13 years, 3 months ago

They are definitely freshmen and personally dogging on them isn't going to help either. The twins have gotten better and thats a fantastic sign in itself, they will progress more and more. There are a lot of fouls that were called where I looked at the TV closely and then I would rewind it back until I actually saw a little bit of contact. Rolls eyes The Technical Foul last night was a horrible call, they didn't really specify why and I thought the over the back call was awful in the first place. They will grow more mature as they get older. I'm not worried just as long as they keep progressing at this speed, the maturity will come.

kennethst 13 years, 3 months ago

KUball99-fair enough and you're right. I was pretty hard on him b/c I was still a little angry earlier. You make good points. Maybe they just need to figure out a way to use him better-b/c he does look way off to me. Thx.

Max Ledom 13 years, 3 months ago


for the love of god if your going to say an emmotional speach than atleast spell "chalk" right. its not Rock chock jayhawk. wow

Rock Chalk Jayhawk

Marcia Parsons 13 years, 3 months ago

You can badmouth this group all you want, but you still have to admit that with a win over Texas they will finish with a better conference record than our championship team. They must be doing SOMETHING right.

OKJAYHAWK5 13 years, 3 months ago

Oh good, look who is covering the KU Texas game!!!! Yay CBS!!!! NOT

NebraskaJayhawk 13 years, 3 months ago

I don't think a lot of people annalyzing this game are bashing or "badmouthing" the team. I'm sure they aren't happy with the loss either. We've seen glimpses of brilliance this year and like last night. But at this point in the season, you can't come out and play like that and expect to ride into the NCAA tourney with a lot of confidence. All I'm saying on the matter...let's get a win Saturday!

Larry Smith 13 years, 3 months ago


This phrase "emmotional speach than atleast " disqualifies you from correcting other people.

Was at the game, the crowd was very small. Hard to believe it at a D1 major conference school.

Tough loss, but the team will rebound.

I think we still get a 2 seed, but most likely not in KC.

100 13 years, 3 months ago

Jaybate and jayhawk02???

I don't think you get it. Not at all. To a casual fan, sure your argument is completely correct. In a video game, you are right. In a high school game, your argument holds a grain of truth.

In a college game, where superior athletes are being beaten by the spread of a crisp passing/ cutting team, you could be right. But not here. Not with KU's team. Not with that many athletes on KU's team ready to get into the game.

The question is: Why let them work the ball for 25 seconds, wear your D down, and hit a three pointer when you COULD let the guard think he can drive in, perhaps hit a floater (maybe not). He gets (possibly) 2 points. It takes 5 seconds off the shot clock. We get the ball back and fire it up the court (because he's out of position after shooting a dirty layup) and score. Or don't.

(continued below)

100 13 years, 3 months ago


But our blood is flowing again.

The point is, the shot attempts per game go WAY up. The rhythm of their offense is knocked into a different time zone. The number of 3 point shots goes WAY down. Perhaps to zero. The flow of our team (and confidence) goes way up. They have no one coming off the bench in a game like this. Their winded by 5 minute mark of the first half. We have 7 kids that would be starting for them that are on the bench. We don't get winded the entire game.

So FORCE THE TEMPO on these crappy little mid major teams!!!!

HINT to Self: the score SHOULD NOT be in the 50's or 60's! We should have 90 plus points in a game like this!

Getting the mid major (or TT) point guard out of his "trained" rhythm is EXACTLY what you want... even if he hits a layup.

The TT spread (severe spread) with good cutters is, and always has been our weakness. Look back at each and every heart breaking loss in the last five years. Bucknell, Bradley, Richmond, Texas Tech. With the exception of one (the most recent Missouri loss), the only way teams are beating us is by playing the midmajor style of basketball -- beautiful basketball -- draining us on our defensive end so our confidence/lungs are drained for our own offensive sets.

TT has perfected it. At least at home. Until you guys (Jaybate and Jayhawk) face that and quit "Laughing Out Loud", we'll never find a solution to our problem (and I think we all want that). Not sure why finding a solution to this problem bothers you. This is KU's problem.

By angling your point guard defender (for instance, make him go left, with the paint relatively open) you take away half of his passes (and you nullify their entire scouting report). He is now in layup mode. If you're defenders are doing their job, the other two passes (on the open side) are now much more risky (i.e. they've stayed home, glued on their defender).

Sure the others on the skip pass might seem open, and they might be. Have your skip pass (that's what we want by the way, when we occassionally got steals last night those are the floaters we stole). If you've coached your D properly in a general set (Self has), the tempo has now changed, simply because one of your defenders is "seeming" to give the dribbler something. And he has. Sort of. But not really.

Its all psychology when you have the better athletes.

People are out of position. Their point guard is now deep, out of position whether he scores or not. The point is, he is the only one "truly" open. So if he scores a layup, so be it -- its no big deal.

(continued below)

100 13 years, 3 months ago


Perhaps you've forgotten? We're Kansas, we get our athletes up the court and score right back at them. Yes, this is more what Roy used to do. But its also why we used to beat any (any) midmajor team by about 70 points. When was the last time we really stomped a midmajor team?

This is the only big complaint I have about the way Self coaches his D. When someone's running a smooth offense that's wearing us down, turn it on its head, and turn it in to one on one matchups. Make their strength (teamwork) become a weakness (greed).

Let them occasionally score without a pass. GET THE TEMPO UP!

GET OUR HEARTS RACING! It's gonna be 40 minutes of this!

(did anyone notice we looked dead in the first few minutes, thats because we had nothing to get excited about besides staying in front of our defenders, knowing someone was gonna hit a 3)

The problem we had last night is general flow. It all about flow. Jaybate you know that! C'mon. Its all about flow when you already have everything you need (and we do).

So give them one side. Give them the other. Give the point guard the lane. But don't give them both sides (4 possible passes) and make us run around for the shot clock until they score a 3.

That's deflating.

Make the point guard feel rushed.

So Jaybate and Jayhawk02, I appreciate your comments. But so much of this is psychology. When you're better, and have better athletes, you just are.

Get the tempo of the game up, let them have a few more easy buckets, WEAR THEM DOWN, and win by 50.

jaybate 13 years, 3 months ago


You're not selling me on this one, coach. :-)

"I don't think you get it" may have worked with your kids, but I've been around the barn a few times.

In the abstract, routing PGs down the center triggers quicker shots and more trips, which are desirable when you've got faster horses and have a philosophy like Roy's; i.e., more trips and higher scoring games are better.

But Self's philosphy is antithetical to that. He likes to beat you the way you like to play, but he always wants his defense get stops, no matter how long it takes, rather than use his defense to trigger quicker shooting.

I'm not saying Eddie's and Bill's philosophies are the only way to play it, just that Bill would rather eat lint than coax quick high percentage shots, when he could use his athleticism to force lower percentage shots how ever long it takes.

Roy, for example, has done just fine using his defense to speed up shooting the way you suggest, coaxing increased trips, playing games in the 80s-90s, and relying on getting more high percentage primary and secondary break baskets than the other guys, who aren't as well trained that way.

But you know as well as I do why Self resists doing it. He is looking for manly stops, not accelerated shooting. He is looking to use athleticism to belly button defend and fight through picks. He doesn't care how much picking is done, he believes in fighting through them and relying on superior athleticism to be able to overcome the picking. He hates switching to conserve energy, because he wants to deny the opportunity to dictate mismatches. He really hates zone precisely, because the advantage of athleticism is reduced. He just believes in going to zone to rest, or protect fouled-up players.

Its the Eddie Ball (or if you prefer Bill Ball) philosophy, coach. Play whatever game they want to play, then exploit whatever they give you with the best match up advantage you can create. Do it until you can't, then look for adjustments, or go zone.

jaybate 13 years, 3 months ago

Asking Coach Self to encourage a point guard into the free throw line, or closer, to shoot high percentage shots more quickly and accelerate into transition is like asking a good priest to encourage a little sinning by a troubled member of the flock so that person will fall quicker and transition back into the confessional quicker. Not gonna happen. Violates some central tenets. :-)

But even if Coach Self caught some your religion, 100, I still say that it is exceedingly easy for a coach of a motion offense and a team used to running that offense to adjust to wrinkles like the one you propose.

The way to ball up a motion offense is simple. Every team in the Big Ten knows how to do it in their sleep. Where ever the picker attempts to set the pick, you push him two to three feet away from that spot. Any time anyone even thinks of setting a double pick, you forearm shiver and shoulder drive those guys in opposite directions. Every guy who starts to run a cut gets pushed two feet out of his cut. This was what KU was not prepared to do by the coaching staff.

Why? Because the KU coaching staff had to make a decision immediately after the MU game. Do they amp up and give a best effort vs. TT--a lousy team--and walk into the Texas game almost certainly without enough juice in the battery to play maul ball with Butcher Barnes' boys? Or do they not amp up against TT, and leave more in the battery for the Texas game and spend more time on the Texas game plan. Self clearly decided to try to win both games by gambling that he could not geek the team up for TT and still beat TT, then take on Texas with everything they had and beat Texas, too.

But Self guessed wrong on how poorly his team would shoot and then how poorly they would play once the frequent screening TTech team wore them down. The reason Self was in such a foul mood is that he could have guarantied a split the last two games but tuning it up for TT and taking a loss against Texas. Instead, he's likely to lose to two. Its a mistake he'll never make again, I'll bet you on that.

KUGreenMachine 13 years, 3 months ago

I'm guessing the awkward silence from that arena the whole game kind of messed with how they were playing.

100 13 years, 3 months ago


Nice overall stuff. Your research as always is right on, regarding LarryBall/ Billball.

The emphasis has always been on shutting all options down inside 21 feet, or at least forcing a low percentage shot & rebounding. Frankly it's the best philosophy. It's about possessions..

Strangely, however, you just proved my point.

My point is these are the games that give us trouble. It's our strength (shutting down and limiting high percentage shots).

So if someone actually tries to stretch us out and is successful (and we're not doing anything offensively), what are our options?

It's all about tempo. We have the athletes. They don't.

Throw these midmajor types a curve.

Don't play into their plan, something they've practiced all year!!!!

Let them have their stupid little 10 foot floaters from a 5'11" guard that takes 5 seconds off the shot clock. MAKE them NOT pass!

Try it for five possessions. See if their other four players start becoming a little disinvolved on the offensive end.

All I can say is it works. Bill has tried things outside of his Larty Brown coaching style before.

ANYTIME we play a midmajor we need to run.

Otherwise Bucknell & Bradley will happen again.

Watch the tapes. Watch our guys on defense. Watch Aaron Miles standing there on the three point line, DYING to jump their lame point guard.

Never take away your players heart.


DOUBLE your shot attempts!!!!!!!

(save the thoughtful intelligent Larry ball for OU, Duke & UNC)

RCJ, Jaybate (Clyde Lovellette)

rockchalk80 13 years, 3 months ago

as a fan---rank your emotional IQ ---:)

it is one game... let's try not to get into analysis paralysis.

jaybate 13 years, 3 months ago


I'm talking about why the combination of Eddie/Bill's basketball philosophy and defensive strategy, plus the ability of opponents to adjust, make Self unlikely to use your tactic.

You're talking about whether it would work.

This is a conversational dynamic I've had in many meetings in professional situations. :-)

I do agree with you on this: a fix has to be found, because we both see a persistent problem that triggers losses to frequent screening teams that use our current defensive strategy to exhaust us.

We diverge regarding TTech in particular on this point. You think it was just the frequent screening offense that caused KU fits (i.e., the same as what mid-majors have thrown at KU). I too think it was a frequent screening offense, but I add that TTech was systematically varying the spacing between packed in and spread out.

Because we define the cause differently, we arrive at different solutions.

Now, here is how I resolve these sorts of issues in other situations.

Let's try your solution in a practice game, and then try my solution in a practice game. The solution that works the best is what we try in a game.

And if you won't try my solution, then we'll just go with my solution. ;-)

As always, it is a pleasure to think about issues with some one who knows plenty and cares much.

Rock chalk.

100 13 years, 3 months ago

Actually Jaybate you and I agree on this more than we thought. The systematic spacing was certainly a huge part of this.

One reason a simple fix is needed (like adjusting the point) is because it is entirely too much to expect five guys to read minute spcing gaps every five seconds and switch together.

Alas if the switch is made it's a backdoor and we're burned.

I'm also not asking Self to do anything different in the first few minutes (necessarily). Just have something up your sleave coach Self!!!!


It's just against teams like this it's all about speeding up the tempo.

If the tempo is slow because of their offense, speed it up.

Their offense is a precision machine made for your D. They've been practicing this all year to beat one team -- yours.

So don't run your D the "exact" way they've seen it on film.

I'd love to hear a better solution (give me one I'd love to hear it) -- the key, as i see it, is not draining your guy's energy.

Again -- their strength (passing/ spacing/ taking time off clock/ 3s) becomes their weakness (quick 2 point shots without a pass).

And best yet for KU -- our shots per contest against these precision teams DOUBLES!


jaybate 13 years, 3 months ago

Strategic Solution:

A motion offense requires good timing to run. People have to be where they are supposed to be when they are supposed to be there. Do everything you can to disrupt them from getting there.


Funnel guard to middle to encourage the quick floater and the five second offense, which means less guarding for our guys; this one's for you. :-)

Push more on defense to prevent the screens from being set appropriately. If the screen can't be set in the right spot, it can't produce an open look.

On double picks, shoulder and hip drive both double picks to the basket, so the on ball defender can always go over them and not have to choose between over and under; this almost eliminates open looks at the three and funnels the shooter toward our bigs--no open looks for three, or two.

Push cutters out of their routes consistently. If the cutters can't get to where they are supposed to be when they are supposed to be there, the offense grinds to a halt and produces no open looks.

Zone when they start to shorten the spacing on the motion offense.

M2M when they widen the spacing and guard the 3 point line and employ all the above tactics.

Alternate zone and man to man frequently so they can't determine a rhythm of wide and narrow spacing in the motion offense.

One more thing. When you've got an imposing big like Cole, play more 1-3-1. It keeps a defender on the three point line the full 180 degrees of the semicircle, when played correctly.

That ought to do it, make us both happy, and be something Coach Self could live with. :-)

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