Thursday, February 18, 2016

Dunk talk: Wildcats using play as motivation

Kansas guard Brannen Greene (14) comes down from a breakaway dunk with seconds remaining in the the Jayhawks' 77-59 win over Kansas State, Wednesday, Feb. 3, 2016 at Allen Fieldhouse.

Kansas guard Brannen Greene (14) comes down from a breakaway dunk with seconds remaining in the the Jayhawks' 77-59 win over Kansas State, Wednesday, Feb. 3, 2016 at Allen Fieldhouse.


Kansas University basketball coach Bill Self was furious at junior guard Brannen Greene for flushing a meaningless, unguarded, unopposed dunk right before the final horn sounded in the Jayhawks’ 77-59 win over rival Kansas State on Feb. 3 in Allen Fieldhouse.

Two weeks, four victories and no losses later, the wounds have healed on KU’s side of the equation.

The 6-foot-7 Greene in fact — after playing just one minute against TCU following a public admonishment by Self — has responded to double-digit minutes with 30 points and 12 boards in wins over Oklahoma State, Oklahoma and West Virginia.

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Press Conferences & Post-Game Interviews

Bill Self on what it will take to win at K-State

Kansas basketball coach Bill Self discusses what the Jayhawks will have to do Saturday to beat rival Kansas State on the road, as well as a number of other topics, at his weekly press conference.

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Meanwhile, in Manhattan, where the Wildcats are preparing for Saturday’s 5 p.m. rematch against KU in Bramlage Coliseum, feelings just now are beginning to surface about Greene’s controversial slam.

“It was kind of like they were just throwing stuff in our face when they did that,” K-State senior Justin Edwards said Thursday as reported by Kellis Robinett of the Wichita Eagle. “To get back at them and just beat them on the court is what we want to do.

“It wasn’t sportsmanlike of him to do that,” Edwards added to Robinett. “The players kind of just said he was a (bleep). I don’t know if I should say that or not, but, yeah, players talked about it.”

Of the dunk, KSU junior Wesley Iwundu said: “In a situation like that you just want to walk off the court and let the game be over with. We still remember that. It is just motivation going into this game.”

Self issued an apology to KSU after the game and Greene did the same after Monday’s home win over Oklahoma State.

“I do apologize and am sorry for it. I’m just ready to play. It’s about the basketball game,” Greene said. “It is what it is, probably so,” he added of fans likely booing him in Bramlage on Saturday. “It won’t faze me much. I don’t really care too much about that.”

KU’s players Saturday also could use an unsportsmanlike act committed by KSU as motivation, if they so desire. Last season, a KSU student plowed into Jamari Traylor and was issued a disorderly conduct citation following a courtstorming after the Wildcats’ second home win over KU in as many years.

“They deserved to storm the court. They beat us. They deserved everything they got that night,” KU junior Wayne Selden, Jr., said Thursday. “We lost the game. They beat us. It’s a new year. We’re not really looking toward sportsmanship (issue) or anything like that, the past or anything like that. We’re just looking to go there and get a win.”

“If we win, we don’t have to worry about it. It (everything) would be all right,” Traylor said. “We’ve just got to take care of business. As far as sportsmanship, that’s old (news). I saw them win a game a little while ago, a big game. I think it was OU. Nobody got hurt after the game. My mindset is on winning anyway. We just have to take care of business,” Traylor added.

The Jayhawk players indicated they weren’t concerned about the Greene issue being on the Cats’ minds.

“I feel any Big 12 game you should be motivated to play. I don’t feel you need small incentives like that,” Selden said. “I feel they’re going to come ready to play and we’re going to come ready to play.”

Noted Traylor: “I’m just here to play. I’m just going to play. Whatever happens outside of the court, I don’t have any control of that. We’re just going to be focused and go out there and play.”

KU coach Self said at his weekly news conference Thursday he anticipates no problems with sportsmanship in Round Two between the No. 2-ranked (22-4, 10-3) Jayhawks and unranked (15-11, 4-9) Wildcats.

“The reason they are rival games is because people on both sides, and fans primarily, don’t really like each other that much. There’s a reason why it’s a rival. It’s because it means something to your group, and it means something to their group, and both of them have pride in who is the victorious one,” Self said.

“Things happen sometimes that doesn’t equate to poor sportsmanship. It equates to a lot of people who care, that get upset at inopportune moments. That situation that happened last year is not a factor, and we’ve had situations where we didn’t handle ourselves right. That’s not a factor. The factor is you’ve got hopefully 10 guys out there at a time competing against each other and keeping everything within the lines certainly. That’s not going to be a point with us, and you know, it shouldn’t be. If you don’t want to get the court storm, you should play better, and certainly we haven’t done that the last couple times over there.”

More on courtstorming: A Twitter post by reporter Robinett (who interviewed KSU players Thursday) reads: “K-State players are pushing for students to storm the court should they beat KU on Saturday. Why not have fun with it, says Wesley Iwundu.” ... KSU this week issued a video on YouTube regarding treating its guests with class. It is available at

Award finalist: KU senior Perry Ellis is one of 10 finalists for the 2015-16 Senior CLASS Award for excellence on and off the court. Other finalists: Georges Niang, Iowa State; Buddy Hield, Oklahoma; Ryan Arcidiacono, Villanova; Malcolm Brogdon, Virginia; Marcus Paige, North Carolina; Justin Sears, Yale; Denzel Valentine, Michigan State; Fred Van Vleet, Wichita State and Kyle Wiltjer, Gonzaga. Fans can vote for Ellis at the Web address


Dirk Medema 6 years, 6 months ago

“K-State players are pushing for students to storm the court should they beat KU on Saturday. Why not have fun with it, says Wesley Iwundu.”

Now that should be some extra motivation.

Mike Riches 6 years, 6 months ago

My initial thought when Self was reacting to Greene's dunk, was he didn't want KSU to have any more ammunition going into the rematch, especially after dropping the last two in Manhattan.

That said, they can use that as motivation if they want to...I don't think it will help. I think we'll be ready to play on Saturday. I think we win by double digits.

Steve Macy 6 years, 6 months ago

It is a rivalry game, yet the mild cats need extra motivation? Going to be fun.

Len Shaffer 6 years, 6 months ago

My sentiments exactly, Steve.

If a team can't get motivated enough to play against their biggest rival and the number 2 team in the country, then they have no chance.

Sae Thirtysix 6 years, 6 months ago

This dunk has to be the most over-reported / over-coached / over done story of the 2015-16 season.

John Boyle 6 years, 6 months ago

I didn't like the dunk and obviously he shouldn't have done it but I agree with Sae Thirtysix, it has been blown way out of proportion.

Danny Hernandez 6 years, 6 months ago

What's with the "they" “It was kind of like they were just throwing stuff in our face when they did that,” K-State senior Justin Edwards said Thursday as reported by Kellis Robinett of the Wichita Eagle. AND "Them"? “To get back at them and just beat them on the court is what we want to do.

Last I read, it was Greene and Greene alone who dunked at the buzzer and who was called out almost immediately by Coach Self quite loudly I moght add. If this is what a player of Edwards caliber needs to do to play better, ok, but it comes across as pretty lame to be bringing up Greene's dunk. Kstate really only needs to look at their pathetic season/record to be angry. I have Kansas winning this one easily, 12 points or more

Joe Joseph 6 years, 6 months ago

Using the dunk as motivation is indicative of how inexperienced and poorly coached K-State is this year. An experienced team, with genuine expectations of competing with and beating KU, may be motivated by such an act, but it's players wouldn't be on full blast in the media. Nor would any good coach encourage his players to bring it up so much in the media leading up to the game. Self would probably threaten to force-transfer anyone who would do such a thing.

I have a feeling this may also end up playing to KUs favor.

Kent Richardson 6 years, 6 months ago

What a bunch of phonies. KSU eschewed the post game OU handshake to go into the stands and act like dipsticks. Disrespect for any opponent or worse total disregard for anything outside their little kingdom. Poor babies, aw shucks.

Bryce Landon 6 years, 6 months ago

Kansas State fans are like Nebraska fans - demanding respect for themselves but not showing it to others. Except Nebraska - at least in football - is good enough most years to command respect anyway. Kansas State doesn't have that pedigree.

Jay Scott 6 years, 6 months ago

Nebraska fans are the most respectful fans in America. None are classier.

Marc Frey 6 years, 6 months ago

Dunking at the end of a game is now a micro aggression. Who knew?

Michael Leiker 6 years, 6 months ago

So to anyone who was upset or disappointed in Greene for the dunk, isn't this a lot more fun now because he did dunk that ball?? Hope he has the same opportunity tomorrow and does it again. You're supposed to want to make KSU feel the pain of a loss...HCBSnyder knows that.

John Fitzgerald 6 years, 6 months ago

Yes, agreed. If they want a war, we'll give them a war.

Glen Miller 6 years, 6 months ago

I didn't like the dunk..... but seriously, really KSU?? You want to talk about unsportsman like conduct..... you of all Universities have absolutely ZERO room to talk when it comes to sportsmanship. There will be no storming the court this year, but thank you for giving our players a bit of extra motivation. We seem to use motivation pretty well this year.

Ryan Zimmerman 6 years, 6 months ago

Someone made the comment when this actually happened with Greene, but I don't see it any differently than when Roy would bring in the bench players and have them play the last 2 minutes with a big lead. Those guys would pop threes and shoot all day long during that time. Greene's dunk wasn't a showboat or even a dunk that had any flair or power to it. It was just an easy drop in the basket. Why KSU is motivated by that makes no sense. Now if we would have crashed the court and body checked one of their players, maybe that would be reason for motivation...

Ryan Zimmerman 6 years, 6 months ago

And if KState fans were smart they'd hope their team gets leveled by KU. Just one more reason to can Weber

Joe Ross 6 years, 6 months ago

If you gotta use a dunk as motivation, then your team is very difficult to motivate otherwise. It says a lot about the character and immaturity of your team. I hope everyone is focused on Brannen Greene, because they'll focus less on Ellis, Selden, Mason, Graham, and Lucas...who all happen to be starters. Good way to get the Wildcats into their heads and out of the game. Besides, Greene is the kind of player that will thrive in that situation. He loves attention. I hope they give it to him. And more than that, I hope Brannen goes for 12 or 15 in the game and shooshes the crowd with a finger to his lips after made threes. Put those "3 goggles" on and just let it fly.

"“It was kind of like they were just throwing stuff in our face when they did that,” K-State senior Justin Edwards said Thursday..."

Then what was the court-storming incident after the game last year at Bramlage that caught Self and Traylor in a stampede?

“It wasn’t sportsmanlike of him to do that."

Oh, and the gridiron fellatio depiction was NOTHING if not sportsmanlike.

“To get back at them and just beat them on the court is what we want to do."

You'd better damn well hope that the string of incidents that Kansas had to endure at the hands of the most unsportsmanlike school in the conference isn't quietly fueling our own team's desire to hand out a beatdown in Manhattan. God, I can't tell you how much I'd like to beat them by 50.

Mike Greer 6 years, 6 months ago

"Oh, and the gridiron fellatio depiction was NOTHING if not sportsmanlike."

Honestly, someone, many someones, should have lost their jobs for that smart move. It's not just bad judgment on the part of a twenty year old, it's bad judgment on the part of faculty and administration. It's not just being caught up in the moment and storming the court, it's premeditated poor conduct. It goes beyond poor sportsmanship and fringes on vulgarity. I can tell you, if my student were in that marching band, they would not have been after that stunt.

Bryce Landon 6 years, 6 months ago

Iowa State is pretty unsportsmanlike too. Don't forget the behavior of their white trash fans and boosters after we won in their house in 2013.

Jay Scott 6 years, 6 months ago

Being upset about KSU sportsmanship and trying to correct it is like a hog farmer trying to control swine halitosis by giving the pigs breath mints.

Mike Greer 6 years, 6 months ago

Rivalry games are intense enough, they shouldn't need Greene's dunk to get up for the game. When you're almost always on the loosing end of that game it's difficult to put it in perspective sometimes.

My favorite response to a question about a rivalry game came from Bob Stoops in reference to Less Miles when he was at OSU, something to the effect . . . winning one game does not make a winning season . . .

I would think all the incentive the Jayhawks need is that, this may be one of the easier of the three road games they have on the schedule, and they need to take advantage of that. Bring their A game and all this "incentive" from Greene's dunk will quickly dissipate.

David McNickle 6 years, 6 months ago

Shouldn't their motivation be if they win, they will at least be in a short discussion for NCAA tourney. If not that, probably could host a couple of NIT games.

Aaron Paisley 6 years, 6 months ago

Start Greene and run a lob for him first possession!

Doug Cramer 6 years, 6 months ago

My thoughts exactly. I hope Greene has about 5 dunks Saturday.

Mike Greer 6 years, 6 months ago

Brannen's really not a dunker at heart. He had the opportunity in the OSU game and passed it up for a very nice layup. I thought for sure he was going to dunk, but that's not what he did. His KSU dunk was so casual, it was more like what you see someone do after play has stopped, like I've got the ball in my hand and I need to do something with it. Far be it from me to try to get in the head of a 20 year old, but I'd be surprised if Brannen has a dunk in store for us on Saturday. But let the threes fall like rain!

Andrew Holmes 6 years, 6 months ago

I saw that Brannen didn't dunk it when he had a chance. I turned to my buddy and said "Brannen just had a chance to dunk without being yelled at...guess that's not his style."

All joking aside, it's nice to see Brannen putting in more effort on the defensive end and hitting shots. I hope it continues for the next month and a half.

Austin Lopez 6 years, 6 months ago

I honestly wasn't mad about Brannen Greene dunk in the last seconds because what goes around comes around, I haven't forgot about that incident the KSU band did.... They deserved what they got and they deserve two A $$ whoopings in the same year also, they don't show respect so why show them respect....

Bryce Landon 6 years, 6 months ago

The K-State players complaining about sportmanship? When their university has a recent track record of classless behavior, and their president issues unapologetic apologies? Check yourselves, K-State; one walk-off dunk is but a drop of water in the ditch of classlessness that you have flooded in the last year or so.

David Robinett 6 years, 6 months ago

I begrudgingly have to say that it appeared K State really tried to prevent a court storming against OU The Yellow Jacket people lined up well in advance of the buzzer and it did prevent the court storming if I remember properly.

Yonatan Negash 6 years, 6 months ago

They can use it a motivation if need be.

That will not change the outcome of the game.

KU wins by double digits.

Humpy Helsel 6 years, 6 months ago

This smack will hopefully help KU come out ready and focused. If we know anything about this team is that if ready to play and focused, they can really be tough to beat on the road or at home (see game last Saturday in Norman). If we should lose, I don't mind if they storm. Just leave our players and coaches alone. Three 3's from Brannen, 5 total dunks and a win, and the KSU faithful can quietly exit toward the feedlot with shovels in hand doing what they do best.

Michael Lorraine 6 years, 6 months ago

We should be using last year's court storming as motivation.

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