Saturday, February 21, 2015

Jayhawks looking for better showing vs. TCU

Kansas head coach Bill Self glances at the scoreboard during a timeout late in the second half at Wilkerson-Greines Activity Center on Wednesday, Jan. 28, 2015 in Fort Worth, Texas.

Kansas head coach Bill Self glances at the scoreboard during a timeout late in the second half at Wilkerson-Greines Activity Center on Wednesday, Jan. 28, 2015 in Fort Worth, Texas.


Kansas University basketball coach Bill Self has compared the end of the Jayhawks’ 64-61 victory over TCU on Jan. 28 in Fort Worth, Texas, to a trip to the dentist for a root canal.

That is, a painful experience.

Remember, the Horned Frogs, who trailed by 11 points with 3:35 left and nine with 1:40 to play, missed a possible game-tying, overtime-inducing three-pointer at the buzzer.

“We were fortunate. They made it interesting late,” said Self, whose Jayhawks (21-5, 10-3) meet TCU (16-10, 3-10) in a 3 p.m. rematch today in Allen Fieldhouse.

“They whipped us on the glass last time. We have to address our deficiencies and do a better job,” he added.

Chris Washburn had 12 rebounds, Trey Zeigler 11 and Kenrich Williams nine for a TCU team that won the board battle decisively, 50-40. The Horned Frogs had 26 offensive rebounds to KU’s nine.

“I’ve always said if you are going to play somebody twice, you want to win. But if you make a perfect scenario, make the first game a hard game,” Self said.

“I think obviously what happened with Oklahoma State, with what happened with Kansas State, then what happened with us down there, are three good reminders that this team’s very capable of playing with anybody.”

TCU enters today’s game after home wins over both KSU (69-55) and OSU (70-55).

“A lot of times their best offense is going and getting it off the glass. We’ve got to do a much better job. We were really poor in Fort Worth with that,” Self said.

Frank Mason III scored 16 points and was the only Jayhawk in double figures at TCU. Brannen Greene and Landen Lucas had seven rebounds apiece. West Virginia outrebounded KU, 37-32, in Monday’s 62-61 win over the Jayhawks in Morgantown.

“Long shots mean long rebounds. We don’t have a good rebounding, defensive rebounding team, per se, from a size standpoint,” Self said. “If you’re not big, you need to do some things from a physical standpoint to put you in better position to get those rebounds.

“You’ve got to hit somebody in position. Your rotating position has to be better. We’re not going to win a lot of jump balls with our standing height with our bigs. If you don’t put a body on physical guys, then obviously they control you. One shove, not necessarily a foul, but one hard move that creates contact can displace you and all of a sudden it becomes jump balls.

“And our guards have to clean up. Frank and Wayne (Selden, Jr.), Kelly (Oubre, Jr.), Brannen (Greene) and Devonté (Graham) are all doing a poor job. Kelly is the best of the five. But all are doing a poor job of running down rebounds,” Self added.

Freshman point guard Graham said rebounding has been an emphasis.

“We’ve got to start doing our jobs better. We’ve got to help the bigs out rebounding,” Graham said of the guards. “We do a bad job of boxing out and rotation box out. We’ve got to start focusing on that. Like coach tells us, do our job and we’ll be better off.

“It’s more wanting to be that guy, be that alpha dog and get your nose dirty a little bit,” Graham added of the key to guards grabbing boards. “I don’t think it’s hard to be aggressive against anybody. You should always want to be aggressive.”

TCU’s Anderson: Senior guard Kyan Anderson scored 17 points off 5-of-18 shooting in the first game. He hit two of six threes and five of seven free throws. Anderson, an 87.2 percent free-throw shooter, has dished five or more assists in five of the past six games.

“Frank and Devonté have to be good. Our ball-screen defense has to be better. Of course, we got to keep him out of the paint. I mean that even from a running start, from an offensive-rebounding standpoint,” Self said.

“We need to make sure we keep him away from the basket as much as possible, which we didn’t do a very good job of the first time at all. He’s a nice player. He controls their team. I don’t know how many he had last night (nine versus K-State), but I don’t think he scored a lot. I know at one point it wasn’t like he was scoring, but he totally controlled the game with the pace. He’s a good player.”

This, that: KU leads the all-time series, 8-1. ... TCU coach Trent Johnson is 2-4 versus KU. Prior to a 2013 home victory, his only other win over the Jayhawks came with Nevada on Dec. 21, 2003, which ended in a 75-61 home Wolf Pack decision. ... Self is 12-4 vs. TCU, including a 6-1 mark as KU coach. ... TCU is shooting 52.7 percent in its last two games, both wins. ... TCU is 9-1 when scoring 70 or more points. ... TCU is 14-2 when outrebounding its opponents. ... KU has a 21-game homecourt win streak. ... KU is 64-9 in games following losses in the Self era. ... Brannen Greene is 18-for-30 (60.0 percent) from three-point range in his last nine games and leads the Big 12 in three-point field goal percentage in conference games at 55.3 percent. ... Cliff Alexander is 38-for-59 (64.4 percent) from the field in Big 12 play with 18 blocked shots. Alexander has at least one blocked shot in 15 of his last 17 games, including a career-high-tying four at Texas Tech (2/10). ... In his last five outings, Frank Mason III has 30 assists against nine turnovers. Mason has multiple steals in three of his last five games and nine games this season. He has 10 steals in his last six contests. ...

Wayne Selden Jr. has scored in double figures in five of his last six games. His five straight 10-plus point games prior to West Virginia (2/16) marked his longest consecutive double-figure scoring mark as a Jayhawk. Selden’s 13 games of multiple threes are best on the KU team this season. Selden is averaging 14.0 points in his last six games and 9.9 for the season. ... After his 2-for-2 effort from three at West Virginia, Kelly Oubre, Jr., has made multiple treys in four of his last five games and nine times this season. Six of those have been against Big 12 competition. The Jayhawks are 8-1 when Oubre connects on two or more three-pointers. ... Graham has 31 assists against nine turnovers in the last 12 games. He has at least one steal in six of his last eight games.

Recruiting: Brandon Ingram, a 6-8 senior forward from Kinston (North Carolina) High, will attend the North Carolina-Georgia Tech game at 11 a.m. today in Chapel Hill and the Duke-Clemson game at 3 p.m. in nearby Durham.’s No. 19-rated player nationally also has KU, Kentucky, UCLA and N.C. State on his list. ... KU assistant Norm Roberts watched No. 7-rated Cheick Diallo, 6-9 senior from Our Savior New American in Centereach, New York, play on Thursday night, reports. Diallo also is considering Kentucky, Iowa State, St. John’s and Pitt.

TCU (16-10, 3-10)

F — Kenrich Williams (6-7, Soph.)

F — Karviar Shepherd (6-10, Soph.)

F — Chris Washburn (6-8, Sr.)

G — Trey Zeigler (6-5, Sr.)

G — Kyan Anderson (5-11, Sr.)

KANSAS (21-5, 10-3)

F — Perry Ellis (6-8, Jr.)

F — Cliff Alexander (6-8, Fr.)

G — Frank Mason III (5-11, Soph.)

G — Wayne Selden Jr. (6-5, Soph.)

G — Kelly Oubre Jr. (6-7, Fr.)


Tony Bandle 7 years, 2 months ago

A loss to TCU today at Allen is almost unthinkable..I predict a coaches sons game i.e. Evan and Tytler both see multiple minutes.

I am guessing KU will have three scholarships to give next season; Kelly's, Conner's and the left over 2014 one. Carlton already has one. I am hoping one of the big men [Maker or Zimmerman] take the second. That leaves one to give.

Any thoughts???????

Robert Brock 7 years, 2 months ago

Jaylen Brown would be a sensational get.

Rob Bedford III 7 years, 2 months ago

KU needs a physical big man over 6' 10. The options may be limited after Kentucky completes the perfect season and needs to restock a first, second and possible 3rd platoon.

Micky Baker 7 years, 2 months ago

Kentucky will likely have 7 to 8 guys declare.

Rob Bedford III 7 years, 2 months ago

And 7-10 will rush in to fill the spots to try to be the next team to have a perfect season.

Shane Johnston 7 years, 2 months ago

It would be nice to have more shot blocking and back to the basket scoring. But I could see Landen and Cliff being enough for next year. We need a little more consistency from Landen, and Cliff is an underrated shot blocker. He alters more shots than he credits for.

I'm not so sure that many leave Kentucky. I see no less than three leaving, but probably 4-5.

Walter Bridges 7 years, 2 months ago

Kentucky already has 3 recruits commit and surprisingly only 3 players predicted to go in the first round. Their 3 seniors are walk ons..

Maybe Cal tells someone they would do better elsewhere but they are pretty much done as far as recruiting goes.

Shane Johnston 7 years, 2 months ago

I think at least one of the Harrison brothers goes. It will be tough for Calipari to start them both ahead of Ulis next year, and at this point they are probably thinking it's time to cut their losses. They were both projected higher at the end of last year, and their stock won't go up next year by coming off the bench.

I could maybe see UK being done with recruiting if the season ended today, but that team will get a ton of attention through the end of the year. Many of their players will push up the draft boards as they play deeper into March. There are several players on that roster who could play themselves into the first round with a couple great games in the tournament. And everyone in their rotation is capable of stringing a couple great games together in any round. Calipari has also shifted away from platooning, so he's less concerned with balancing minutes than he was earlier in the year. Whoever gets hot, will play.

Aaron Paisley 7 years, 2 months ago

Kentucky has 4 projected 1st round picks right now. Karl-Anthony Towns and Willie Cauley-Stein are consensus lottery picks right now and Devin Booker and Trey Lyles are projected in the 1st round on the vast majority of projections. Some have 1 or both of them in the late lottery so I'm expecting all 4 to go.

Mike Riches 7 years, 2 months ago

These next two purple games are classic take-care-of-business matchups. The Jayhawks will and should be highly favored in both, and if we play reasonably well, we should win both by double digits. Two wins will leave Kansas with at least a one game lead in the conference race, with only three games to go. Those last three games will all be tough, which is even more reason to play well today and Monday.

Micky Baker 7 years, 2 months ago

Well. OU and ISU have to play each other in Ames. That guarantees at least one loss for one of them. Iowa State plays at Texas today. Texas should be playing with a sense of urgency today... stay tuned. I predict Texas to win that one today.

Oklahoma has one more loss than we have already and has one fewer game to play than we do heading into today. I believe Iowa State is going to beat Oklahoma in Ames.

We play TCU, Kansas State, Texas, and West Virginia in our next 4, 3 of which are at home. We should win all four of those and if we do, we will have clinched the league championship. We might be do it by the end of the Texas game, at least clinch a tie.

Iowa State has to play Kansas State, Baylor, Texas, Oklahoma, and TCU. I can see as many as 3 losses for Iowa State in those 5, but most likely I can see them losing at Kansas State and at Texas today. The other game the could lose is to Baylor. Baylor has size advantages and is as quick as Iowa State is so Iowa State better have their A+ game when they play Baylor. West Virginia, well, they have the toughest schedule remaining of them all. Unfortunate for them it's all grouped up at the stretch portion of the season for them.

Shane Johnston 7 years, 2 months ago

It would be nice for KU, ISU and OU to all play well down the stretch. The finale with OU will be a great one to watch.

I view our KSU game as just as lose-able as ISU going to Texas. ISU has tough games left, but many of those are at home. Certainly they don't have a game as challenging as our road game at OU. It's gonna be tough avoiding a share of the conference.

Walter Bridges 7 years, 2 months ago

I get where you are coming from Shane but I hope the game is played for pride only.

Harlan Hobbs 7 years, 2 months ago

Pretty thorough analysis of where we stand in the conference race, Mike and Micky. It is set up well for KU, but a stumble at home would certainly upset the apple cart.

I don't particularly worry about West Virginia because I think that KU can handle the press at home, given that we should have won at Morgantown.

My biggest concern is Texas. They are capable of playing with anyone, and they have the power inside to give us a lot of problems. It becomes a case of which team shows up.

The darkhorse candidate for a crucial game is Monday night at Manhattan. We need this game and hold serve at home to guarantee no worse than a tie for the title. That would force ISU to run the table, and I don't think they are good enough to do that.

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