Kansas defeats Kansas State, 90-66

  • 6 p.m., Jan. 29, 2011
  • Allen Fieldhouse, Lawrence, KS

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Uplifting experience: Robinson heroic vs. ’Cats

Kansas forward Thomas Robinson gets airborne for a flying bump from the Morris brothers Markieff (21) and Marcus during a timeout against Kansas State during the second half on Saturday, Jan. 29, 2011 at Allen Fieldhouse.

Kansas forward Thomas Robinson gets airborne for a flying bump from the Morris brothers Markieff (21) and Marcus during a timeout against Kansas State during the second half on Saturday, Jan. 29, 2011 at Allen Fieldhouse.


His Kansas University basketball teammates and coaches — as well as the fans — would have understood had Thomas Robinson decided to take a leave of absence and skip Saturday’s Sunflower Showdown against rival Kansas State.


KU vs. Kansas State

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Kansas defeated Kansas State 90-66 on Saturday, Jan. 29, 2011 at Allen Fieldhouse.

Podcast episode

Press Conferences & Post-Game Interviews

KU coach Bill Self

Kansas coach Bill Self talks to reporters following the Jayhawks' 90-66 victory over Kansas State on Jan. 29, 2011.

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Podcast episode

Press Conferences & Post-Game Interviews

KSU coach Frank Martin

Kansas State coach Frank Martin talks to reporters following KU's 90-66 victory over the Wildcats on Jan. 29, 2011.

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The grief-stricken sophomore forward, whose mom, Lisa, died on Jan. 21 and was buried Thursday, elected to take the court, however, and after a slow start, emerged as one of the heroes in a 90-66 rout of the Wildcats in Allen Fieldhouse.

“I played tonight because I cannot sit around too long. I knew my mother wouldn’t want me to sit around crying about it forever,” Robinson said.

He missed his first three shots — including a dunk try after checking into the game to wild applause with 16:47 left in the first half — yet rallied for 17 points off 7-of-11 shooting with nine rebounds in 20 minutes.

“Coming into this game, I felt I owed it to all the fans and all the people across the country that showed me support helping me get through this time. I felt I owed it to all those to at least give it my all,” Robinson said.

There were many signs in the student section including “We love T-Rob” and “Jayhawks for Jayla,” a reference to his 7-year-old sister who is now staying with her father in Washington, D.C.

All the love didn’t help Robinson convert that first dunk try.

“I was thinking I was jumping higher than I was, trying to pull the rim down, and the ball came out. It was just a little mental mistake,” the 6-foot-9, 237-pounder said.

“I’ve not been sitting around, but not been playing basketball for a whole week. For somebody playing at this level, that’s unheard of. I was so anxious to get back on the court whether practice or the game. I just could not wait to see the fieldhouse again.”

He hit seven of eight shots the second half, good for 15 points. His total of 17 points marked his second-highest output of the season, trailing only his career-high outing of 20 against UT Arlington.

“We ran a couple things to try to get him an easy basket a couple times,” KU coach Bill Self said. “He did miss some shots in tight. There have been times in the past I maybe didn’t let him play through those things. I was going to do everything I could to let him play through that tonight. He needed to be out there.”

Robinson scored six straight early in the second half — a short jumper in the paint, a driving layup, followed by a 15-footer — that gave KU a 55-31 lead. KU led by as many as 32 points in this one-sided affair.

“After I hit the first two, I made my mind up on their end (playing defense) that I was going to shoot that (deep jumper). That was just momentum. It was a heat check,” said Robinson, who indeed was red-hot.

“He got on a roll there for a minute,” Self said. “Good thing he got tired or he would have shot the next one maybe from halfcourt. He played so well, so much energy.”

Robinson finished with three vicious dunks, including one in which he was called for a technical foul for hanging on the rim.

He received a thunderous ovation and waved to fans upon exiting for good with 1:04 left.

“That was a special deal for him. Of course, the fans here are incredible,” Self said, “how they recognized him when he checked in and how they recognized him when he checked out. It’s a special moment, one he’ll never forget. Of course it goes without saying we’re really proud of him.”

Robinson received a lot of attention right after his stellar performance that helped the Jayhawks improve to 20-1 overall and 5-1 in the Big 12; KSU fell to 14-8, 2-5.

KSU’s Jacob Pullen, who scored 21 points, but most when the game was well out of reach (KU led 15-2 and 37-20 at halftime and never looked back), spoke with Robinson in the handshake line.

“Basketball is basketball, and the things that he is going through in life and regardless if this is a rivalry or whatever, the things he is going through right now are things you wouldn’t wish on your worst enemy,” Pullen said. “I told him he has to use basketball as a tool for other things in life and to keep his head up at all times, and things will get better. God will never put you in a situation you can’t handle, and right now times are tough on him, but I told him things would definitely get better.”

KU will meet Texas Tech at 8 p.m. Tuesday in Lubbock, Texas.

Robinson will be in attendance.

“The support I’ve received has touched me beyond words,” he said. “I know I cannot physically say thank you to every person that has helped me, but if this could get out I just want to thank people that have tried to reach out to me or thought about me. This past month (following deaths of grandmother, granddad and mom) has opened my eyes to how amazing this place is. It is beyond words to describe how I feel and the love I have for Kansas University and the fans.”


Alohahawk 11 years, 10 months ago

We love you too, TRob. Fantastic game. Here's hoping that from now on, 2011 will be nothing but the best for you. RCJH Go TRob!!!!!

ljmhawk 11 years, 10 months ago

I respect pullen, he is a classy guy and to say that to Robinson means alot. I wish Kstate were having a better season to help with the conference, and I'm sorry pullen has to be stuck on that sorry team.

James Miller 11 years, 10 months ago

Pullen is headed to the NIT. Yeah!!!! No remorse. Maybe they can play North Carolina.

Scott Smetana 11 years, 10 months ago

I feel this more than ever.. KSU is a friendly rivalry. Many of our neighbors root for the other side. Pullen is class. Collins seemed to have a great relationship with the Wildcats as well. Many of my good high school friends are Wildcats. We need them to make us and the league better. I hope their bigs get their heads out.

Now on the other hand.... MIzzery.

Lance Hobson 11 years, 10 months ago

It's great to see the Jayhawk fans support TRob and his family the way we have. I look forward to the day when his little sister walks down the hill.

ccarp 11 years, 10 months ago

No thanks necessary, T-Rob. That's just what families do, look out for each other. Hope you felt the love on the heat check, I know me and my crew were going crazy for ya in St. Louis!

Corey Shideler 11 years, 10 months ago

My man! Good to see you back. Good to see you driving the lane like a guard. what a great game. KSU fans equate winning at AFH to winning the National Championship and we crushed them. Also great to hear Dickie V eat crow about his preseason rankings.

Ron Franklin 11 years, 10 months ago

He definitely got away w/ 3 steps there...but it's all good!!

Dyrk Dugan 11 years, 10 months ago

great game by TRob....i was jumping out of my chair on every one of his baskets...even hit some FTs too. very fun for him....and all the signs honoring him it was great.

KSU showed us nothing really...they are in true turmoil. Curtis Kelly doesn't even see the floor in the 2nd half. the KC Star this a.m. was STILL talking about the scenarios to take them from 2-5, to 9-7 and make the NCAA tourney. c'mon!?! at CU, at NU, at UT, home to KU and MU....does two wins seem possible there? with winning all the rest, that's still only 8-8....and even then i don't think it happens.

expectations were high this year for the kitties....and i said all along they would miss Clemente big time...and they really, really do.

Ashwin Rao 11 years, 10 months ago

Any word on the recruits? I bet they liked what they saw!

kellyrojo78 11 years, 10 months ago

That was inspiring basketball and a joy to watch. T-Rob is a physical freak and he was well spoken and throughtful during the post game interview. With football being on break, yesterday felt like the first true college basketball Saturday with the sports media really focusing on colleg hoops. Good to see KU at the center of it all!

RockCaCO3 11 years, 10 months ago

Thinking of you and your family T Rob. Great game!

ilovebill 11 years, 10 months ago

I LOVE this team! My whole family was wildly cheering for Thomas. (And great character shown by the KSU team.)

honk_for_hawks 11 years, 10 months ago

A game I don't think I'll ever forget. I literally teared up a little at the end when the crowd was going crazy and T-Rob was waving. There were so many signs for T-Rob and I hope he felt all that love cause every single person in that arena last night had his back. It was like every single fan was a parent at a little league game and T-Rob was our kid. We took the BS calls against him more seriously than anyone else, we got more pumped for the stuff he did than anyone else, and we all were disappointed whenever he was taken out of the game. I had to call in to work to go to this game but man was it worth it. I'm always gonna remember this as the "Here's to you Mrs. Robinson" game.

KGphoto 11 years, 10 months ago

Favorite signs:

"0 is my Hero!"

"Here's to you Mrs. Robinson"

That last one caught me off guard. The sign actually brought a tear. I wouldn't mind hearing that song at AFH during opportune moments in the future. I only saw it for the first time after his amazing jumper that punctuated the 6 point streak that had the crowd in a frenzy. ("Did TRob just hit a jumper!?" OMG!!) As the cameras tried frantically to get as much crowd reaction as possible, all the signs were bouncing around like crazy. The announcers were drowned out and TRob had the moment we all wanted for him so badly.

What an awesome game! Got it all DVR'd and I'm gonna watch it again today. So proud to be a Jayhawk.

Steve Brown 11 years, 10 months ago

KU pep band should have the Ms. Robinson down by next game...should be sweet.

ilovebill 11 years, 10 months ago

Zero is my Hero!

Now there is a great t-shirt idea! Those would practically sell themselves for Jayla's scholarship fund.

DDDHawk 11 years, 10 months ago

Thanks for that article about Tharpe (sp?) and how that high school is supporting T-Rob! Can't wait to get him next year to join Robinson and the team.

docileboy 11 years, 10 months ago

I thought the K-State players and coaches showed a lot of class last night. A beat down like they faced is tough to handle, but they showed good sportsmanship through out, and I appreciate the respect they showed for T-Rob.

Woody Cragg 11 years, 10 months ago

Great story, we all did want this for TRob. I liked that HCBS "let him play through" some mistakes. Is likely we also witnessed the creation of a real force. But KSU is nowhere like last year wthout Sutton & Clemente, not even close.

jayhawkintexas 11 years, 10 months ago

Great game for TROB, KU coaches and staff, students, alumni and friends. Way to go 'Hawks! Go wreck Tech on Tuesday. As for KSU--they have no confidence right now. That's really a shame because Frank is a really good coach and they have the talent. Even though they are our rival, I still want them to do well except when they play KU, of course.

Funhawk 11 years, 10 months ago

“I played tonight because I cannot sit around too long. I knew my mother wouldn’t want me to sit around crying about it forever,”

Its interesting to hear someone else also think this after a parent dies.

cobweb 11 years, 10 months ago

Most of us from stable homes forget where a lot of these kids come from. Poor, single parents, crummy schools, friends killed. They have to grow up in a hurry and have a ton of opportunities to go bad. Coach Self favors these kids and has done a great job changing their lives. Next time you bitch about taxes or social programs, put yourself in their environment.

Hank Cross 11 years, 10 months ago

This is a sports board. Feel free to post on the dailykos. However, since you brough it up, social programs like LBJ's Great Society have done nothing to stop poverty, and probably made it worse.

KingManMan 11 years, 10 months ago

Please keep politics off this board, it is an invitation to ruin the joy we receive talking about the Jayhawks and college sports in general.

Martin Rosenblum 11 years, 10 months ago

I dont think cobweb's comments are political in nature. More socially oriented. I sort of disagree that HCBS "favors" kids from challenged backgrounds, however. He is obviously a man of integrity and sensitivity. Cobweb is merely trying to get people to have empathy for those who come from more humble backgrounds.

ParisHawk 11 years, 10 months ago

My take on cobweb's comments is similar to memhawk's. Substitute "empathizes with" for "favors" and I entirely agree. The last sentence has a political flavor, but not enough to ruin your day IMHO...

The point is that Coach Self (and other coaches) do a great job with kids from different and mostly difficult backgrounds, and it takes a lot of understanding to help them individually and as a team. Of course, it starts with prudent recruiting.

cobweb 11 years, 10 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

KGphoto 11 years, 10 months ago

Haha. LJW deleted the word ...

... oh yeah. Well they deleted the big O. Gimme a break LJW.

Ken Sedgwick 11 years, 10 months ago

Some people aren`t happy unless they have something to hate. That said, KSU haters take a moment to acknowledge the way KSU (coaches and team) handled themselves yesterday. It had to be a real bitter pill to swallow.

dtownhawkfan 11 years, 10 months ago

As much as I do not like K-State, I gained a lot of respect for Pullen and Martin last night. Very classy by them towards T-Rob.

KU_FanSince75 11 years, 10 months ago

K-State did show a lot class last night. That was nice! Unlike Colorado, though.

Kyle Crenshaw 11 years, 10 months ago

This whole situation just makes me love having HCBS as our coach even more! He has embraced the fact that we're not just fans and this isn't about just basketball to us...the University of Kansas is a family stretched from L.A. to Lawrence, all the way out here to Virginia. I hope Self really realizes what he's a part of and decides this really is the greatest place in the country to coach! Rock Chalk Jayhawk GO KU!!!!

KGphoto 11 years, 10 months ago

I think he does. He's just a stoic fella. He got choked up a little at his press conference after he was hired if you remember.

Days like this though, probably drive him into a feeling of loyalty that even the alumni don't have. He's right in the middle of it, after all. He's a piece of the lore.

In fact I bet he was the most emotional person in the whole gym last night, hearing the crowd cheering for TRob. He's just a tough cookie.

KGphoto 11 years, 10 months ago

Personally I would've been sobbing like a little girl at some points last night, if I had recruited, coached, attended the funeral and witnessed the power of the church of basketball, standing right there on Naismith Court.

KU_FanSince75 11 years, 10 months ago

T-Rob had a fantastic game last night. When he took that top of the key shot and swished it, I am sure HCBS didn't want him to take that. I was laughing my head off when it went in. According to Chris Piper on the radio broadcast, Self had a weird smile on his face. That had to be priceless!

MrPilot 11 years, 10 months ago

OT: The Dukies are getting reamed by St. John right now, down 20 points in the 2nd half.

Priest Fontaine 11 years, 10 months ago

T-Rob, We had a big Kansas alumni crew in Brooklyn rooting you on last night. You've always been one of our favorite players. We are all so proud of you. You have our love and support. Now just keep playing like you did last night!!! Wow!

4everahawk 11 years, 10 months ago

Anyone know the song that ESPN played prior to commercial breaks several times during first half?

Darrel Stice 11 years, 10 months ago

Firework, by Katy Perry was played a lot when they cut to commercials.

Darrel Stice 11 years, 10 months ago

You're more than welcome! Glad I could help!

dochambers 11 years, 10 months ago

I didn't attend kids did and I spent half my life in Kansas...that doesn't keep my from being a Jayhawk fan. Being one I am hurting for T-Rob about as much as any one.

Because I care, my check for Jayla is in the mail.

Y'all keep talking about the Jayhawk Nation and all that crap. I would like to see all of you posters put your money where your collective mouths are and raise enough money so this poor orphan kid doesn't ever have to worry about money for any school she is capable of attending. It will be interesting to see how the Jayhawk Nation responds when they are asked to contribute something other than (occasional) wise words..

If you want to bitch at me my name is Clark Groseth and my email address is

Marcia Parsons 11 years, 10 months ago

Appreciate your passion, but I think you are being harsh for no reason. Many, maybe most, people who post on this board have already sent their checks to the scholarship fund.

jayhawkgirl72 11 years, 10 months ago

The best coach, the best team, the best fans and the best field house! it's great to be a Kansas Jayhawk!

Alohahawk 11 years, 10 months ago

+1 Plus: The best chant (RCJHKU), the best and most recognizable quote (Beware all who enter....), the waving wheat, the most historical BB legacy (soon to include the original Naismith rules), the most recognizable fight song (Match it to any school's fight song - few people who have attended college anywhere would not recognize it as KU's), and I'd bet most students would admit we have the most beautiful and picturesque campus with a wide variety of architectural styles perched on Mt. Oread overlooking the surrounding countryside. Finally, tadaaaa, Potter's Pond with the Campaniile looming on the horizon above. :-)

We also came up with the Wheaties theme song, when a player fouled out. All in all, I doubt there are any other schools which have had so many innovative and unique ideas over the years.

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