Kansas defeats Oklahoma, 109-106

  • 8 p.m., Jan. 4, 2016
  • Allen Fieldhouse, Lawrence, KS

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Unbelievable: No. 1 Kansas outlasts No. 2 Oklahoma in triple OT

Kansas head coach Bill Self flashes a smile as he leaves the court following the Jayhawks' 109-106 triple overtime win over the Sooners.

Kansas head coach Bill Self flashes a smile as he leaves the court following the Jayhawks' 109-106 triple overtime win over the Sooners.


Buddy Hield’s last-gasp three-point shot missed and finally, after three overtimes, Kansas University’s No 1-ranked basketball team had won a game of the ages, a 109-106, thriller over No. 2 Oklahoma in Allen Fieldhouse.

It’s a wonder Hield’s shot clanged, considering his 46 points, yes 46 points, on Monday matched Kansas State’s Mike Wroblewski for highest scoring output in a game by a KU foe in Allen Fieldhouse in school history.

Wroblewski’s mark came way back in 1962. 

That’s right, 1962.

“Buddy is awesome. He’s a great player. He can score from anywhere ... but we wanted it so bad,” said KU senior forward Perry Ellis, who responded with 27 points and 13 rebounds for the Jayhawks in the first three-OT game in fieldhouse lore.

“It’s the toughest game I’ve ever played. We never stopped fighting,” Ellis added.

Once the thriller ended, freshman Cheick Diallo stood on the press table and waved wildly to the fans while other players and coaches slapped five and hugged as they headed out the northwest tunnel to the locker room.

Quite an end to a day in which KU was ranked No. 1 in the AP poll and Oklahoma took over the top spot in the USA Today/coaches poll.

“It was an unbelievable game, probably the best game I’ve ever been part of in the regular season,” said KU coach Bill Self. “The Missouri one here (in final meeting in series history) is the only one that comes to mind. That was such an emotional game. They are good. They could win a national championship,” Self added of the Sooners. “I look at their bench, their coaches are smiling, laughing at me and me at them (because of the epic contest). It was ridiculous how well both teams were playing and how many shots went in.

“I’m so proud of our guys. This is draining emotionally. We may have to take couple days off. It’s certainly one of the most fun nights I’ve had here,” added the 13th-year KU coach.

Podcast episode

Press Conferences & Post-Game Interviews

Bill Self on KU's 'incredible' 3OT win over OU

Kansas basketball coach Bill Self marvels at the display put on by the No. 1-ranked Jayhawks and No. 2 Oklahoma after KU's 109-106, triple-overtime victory at Allen Fieldhouse.

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The Jayhawks, who blew an 11-point first-half lead and overcame a 10-point second-half deficit, had so many big plays in the thriller. But here’s a look at the ones that won the game in the third OT.

First, Wayne Selden Jr. (21 points) was fouled on a three-point try that busted a 94-94 tie. He missed the free throw, but KU had a three-point lead early in OT. Ellis and Devonté Graham (20 points, seven boards) hit two free throws apiece and KU led, 102-98, with 2:53 left.

OU then surged to grab a 103-102 lead, Selden putting the Jayhawks back in front, 104-103, with a nice scoop shot at 1:14. 

Podcast episode

Press Conferences & Post-Game Interviews

Mason, Graham and Ellis on KU's 3OT thriller

Kansas players Perry Ellis, Devonté Graham and Frank Mason III react to the Jayhawks' crazy, triple-overtime victory over Oklahoma.

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KU trailed 106-105 when Landen Lucas batted the ball from Hield and Graham was fouled on the other end. He hit two free throws and KU led, 107-106 at :15.2

Hield then took the ball out of bounds, but Mason batted it with his left hand, then grabbed the ball with both hands and was fouled, hitting two free throws with 8.6 seconds to play and giving KU the three-point lead.

“Here a little 5-9 guy steals the ball with a 6-5 guy throwing it in,” Self marveled. “Frank labored all night long, then makes great plays to win the game.”

OU had eight seconds to hit a three and tie it. Did Self consider fouling the Sooners to avoid a last-second trey try?

“I said, ‘Let’s foul ’em. Then at the end of the time out said, ‘Let’s guard their ass,’’’ Self said. “There were key plays, a ton of ‘em,” Self added.

Of the crucial steal on the out of bounds play, Mason said: “Right before the play started the ref told me not to get close to the line. I took a step closer and went all out to deny. I got a deflection and got the steal.

“It was a great feeling,” he added. “I’m just happy I made the free throws and was able to get a deflection and make the free throws at the end.”

Mason actually guarded Hield the second half.

“I was going to put Devonté on him to start the half. Frank comes to me and said, ‘I’ll guard him, coach. I’ll get underneath him,’’’ Self said. “Frank guarded the heck out of him the second half and he got 24. Buddy’s great and is such a class kid.

“To think, all we did was win at home,” Self joked. “Think of how hard it’ll be to win on the road. It couldn’t have been scripted better tonight as a showcase for our league.”

Self said, “both teams were exhausted. Perry shoots two air-balls at the end 'cause of fatigue. I’m proud of our guys. January 4 is too early to be having games like this. Everybody is going to be talking Big 12 right now nationally.”

Of Ellis’ play, Self said: “He played great. He played inside tonight. Lattin (Khadeem, who missed a free throw that could have won it at the end of regulation) was blocking every shot and Perry did a good job going at him inside.”

The Jayhawks, who travel to Texas Tech Saturday, were fired up after the epic game. KU's fans were so awed by the action they graciously gave OU's Hield a standing ovation as he exited the arena.

“I could play two more overtimes right now,” Mason (15 points, 5-20 shooting) said with a smile. “It was a great night. I couldn’t be more proud of my teammates.”

— See what people were saying about No. 1 versus No. 2 during’s live coverage

More news and notes from No. 1 Kansas vs. No. 2 Oklahoma

By the Numbers: Kansas 109, Oklahoma 106 (3OT)

By the Numbers: Kansas 109, Oklahoma 106 (3OT)


Omari Miller 6 years, 6 months ago

Epic game. I nearly punched a hole in my ceiling when I jumped off the sofa at the end.

Debbie Mangen 6 years, 6 months ago

Can anyone tell me where I could see the game either online or on DirecTV? I know they replay the games sometimes. If anyone could let me know, I'd appreciate it. Thank you. I didn't get the end of it recorded.

Dirk Medema 6 years, 6 months ago

Go to espn has replays at the watch espn link. It's probably there already, though sometimes it craps out on me before the end of the game.

Steve Zimmerman 6 years, 6 months ago

Wow.. I wish I was there. Buddy is unreal. This is the best player came to AFH - post KD. Hield will win POY for sure. He's so much more athletic than Denzel and so much fun to watch. And this we know now: KU's trio: Mason, Graham, Selden belong to Elite Guards. Who's next?

Bert White 6 years, 6 months ago

I was at the last KU vs Mizzou game in AFH and it was hands down the best live event I ever attended.... I truly had a hard time hearing for an entire hour after the game it was so loud in there.... But after watching this OU game I'm kicking myself for not making it to the game. AMAZING game (KU even actually made free throws), and I'd of loved to have heard what being in AFH during it was like.

Sadly next game I goto is Texas, but on the plus side I'm debating on making a commemorative shirt to celebrate Shaka Smarts first year coaching the Longhorns


KANSAS What a Shaka


9 out of 10 University of Texas students aren't that Smart

Suzi Marshall 6 years, 6 months ago

I'm glad the officials got there act together during half time because they were horrible the first half. The League Head Official or somebody must have talked to them because they were the story in the first half. How do they make that call on Mason just before half? Also at the end of the game, it took me, what seemed like an eternity, to determine the refs did not call a foul on Mason on Hield's last trey.

Jared Reeves 6 years, 6 months ago


I agree that the official were really inconsistent all game. Although in the first half, Oklahoma was driving to the basket a lot more than us, which explains some of the free throw disparity.

Joe Joseph 6 years, 6 months ago

Normally, only the players wearing Kansas on their uniforms get preferential treatment in AFH. Buddy Hield was treated by the officials like royalty. Though he probably deserved it.

Rodney Crain 6 years, 6 months ago

I agree with you Suzi but I just am not sure what blaming the refs does. Have they ever changed the outcome of the game, a call? I can see a Coach getting fired up on a bad call but they are not going to change it, even if they agree they might have made a mistake. Especially on something they can not review on video.

It evened out and we won, I say we toast the victory and let it be.

Patrick Bryant 6 years, 6 months ago

I will toast with you Rodney. I have to admit that bad call on Frank (steal/foul) and then the T got me a little uneasy but I trust Coach Self knows what he is doing.

Jared Reeves 6 years, 6 months ago

RCJH! Amazing game and great win!

This may sound like heresy, but Oklahoma might be the better team. KU definitely outplayed them yesterday, but Oklahoma runs better offense, and their defense seems just as good. Oklahoma’s guards are so fast, and they beat us off the dribble all night on screens. It reminded me of the Michigan St. game. I think Oklahoma could be even better if they dished it to Lattin when we come over to help on defense. Their 4-out and 1-in look is so effective with quick guards who can shoot. I wish KU played more of that, and took Perry away from the basket more, like how they use Spangler. I thought Spangler played great and really shut down Ellis near the rim for much of the game, and Lattin seemed to block everything else.

For the Jayhawks, this might be our ceiling (although I hope not). Our guard trio played great, and Lucas and Traylor had great games--which was nice to see them start playing like seniors. Ellis started 6 - 18, trying in vain to take it Spangler and Lattin near the paint, but then started playing smarter and found ways to knock down some shots with quickness and getting away from the basket.

If the rematch is half this good, we are in for a treat.

Benz Junque 6 years, 6 months ago

That's not our ceiling AT ALL. We had a ton of unforced errors, especially in the first half. Graham was flat out terrible to start the game. At one point he had 1 assist and 4 turnovers. Ellis took a number of really bad shots and Mason threw some junk up there that had no chance of anything but getting blocked.

KU can still play a lot better,

Kent Richardson 6 years, 6 months ago

Perry missed 10 chippies in the second half. Against ISU Spangler missed 7 bunnies in the second half. Bunny misses win games? Lol

Kent Richardson 6 years, 6 months ago

This one played out much like the ISU/OU game. ISU had them down by 8 or so late in the second half. OU just kept making shots and not just Hield. ISU had a lock down defender which we don't have. ISU didn't have what we do outside of Niang. We were able to keep scoring with them so they did the same thing with ISU and KU and we beat them. No fluke. Woodard is the real deal and we still beat them.

Mike Riches 6 years, 6 months ago

Incredible! One of the best games I've ever seen!

I understand the logic of sticking with the guys who are playing, but it just was difficult watching those five guys play so tired, while our bench was full of capable, fresh legs, through fifteen minutes of extra time. Having said that, I don't know when would have been the right time to make a substitution, and if that might have disrupted the rhythm. And the fact the starters (plus Lucas) were all on the floor for the majority of all three overtimes, is part of what made this game so epic, so no complaints. Just proud to be a Jayhawk fan!

Kent Richardson 6 years, 6 months ago

We don't win without Svi and Brannen hitting their shots and I would expect they would have continued.

Bill Corey 6 years, 6 months ago

I don't understand why we don't foul with 6 seconds left and a 3 point advantage. Put 'em the line and win by one. Is it considered bad form? Is it illegal? What am I missing? We got burned by Michigan a few years back when they came down, hit a 3, and went on to an OT win. And yet I remember Memphis saying they tried to foul Sherron in a similar situation in the '08 Nat'l Championship game. Do the refs conspire to not call a foul in that situation? Someone (nicely) enlighten this avid yet apparently uninformed fan. Little help.............

Jonathan Allison 6 years, 6 months ago

Self is fearful of putting a three point shooter on the free throw line or getting called for an intentional or flagrant foul.

Jonathan Allison 6 years, 6 months ago

He would rather play straight up and force the other team to make a tough contested three pointer. I think that most coaches and commentators would agree that the percentage play would be to foul with 6 or fewer seconds and put them on the line to shoot two. Self has almost always chosen to play it out and not foul.

Brett McCabe 6 years, 6 months ago

My gut last night was not to foul OU. Both teams were exhausted and I agreed that forcing a tired team to make a 3pt play was the right approach, especially with Woodward out, Spangler non-existent and the great defense that Frank was playing on Hield.

Rodney Crain 6 years, 6 months ago

Bill I thought they should foul them but with the time out, Coach was able to put a defensive set with a body on anybody at the 3 point line daring them to take a guarded 3. It worked. My bet is that if anyone was going to drive to the basket they would have let them go without fouling them give up 2 points. He has said before he does not foul in that sittuation.

Joe Joseph 6 years, 6 months ago

The only time I can remember KU fouling in that situation is against Ohio State in the 2012 final four.

Bryce Landon 6 years, 6 months ago

This game should live forever on ESPN Classic. Better yet, it should be made available for fans on DVD.

Benny Armstrong 6 years, 6 months ago

If KState was involved, then there would have been shirts and DVD's already on their website. Amazing game for sure, but like Self said we held serve at home and it's only the second game of the conference schedule. Lot of ball left and we can't go lay an egg in Lubbock on Saturday.

Jonathan Allison 6 years, 6 months ago

Texas Tech is still under the radar. They and WVU are both good teams. In my mind both should be top 20 teams and possibly top 15 teams. These first two conference road games will both be tough tests for our team. Both teams on their home courts have given Kansas fits in recent years, and both are much improved this year.

Brett McCabe 6 years, 6 months ago

That's the story of the whole season. TCU seems to be the only easy out, and we lost there a few years ago in the worst basketball game ever played.

However, I think that our team has the most upside of any team in the conference. Check, Carlton and Svi will continue to improve and give us match-up options, fresh-leg opportunities and effective scoring. This team will get better and better and better as the year progresses.

Roger Ortega 6 years, 6 months ago

I look for Svi, Diallo & Bragg to get their minutes in the TT, TCU, KSU and Texas games. Which will in turn help them be more ready for OU, ISU, Baylor again (they won't go as easy next time) and WVU if we need them.

Rodney Crain 6 years, 6 months ago

Well we will sure have earned our battle stipes by the time the tournament comes around.

I would like to see our roation add 2 players to it. When it gets tight in the 2nd half, we leaning on experience. Got no issues with that just saying I would like to get a couple of young ones in that roation.

Michael Lorraine 6 years, 6 months ago

Unbelievable game but for my money the last game against mizoo is still my all time favorite in AFH.

Joe Joseph 6 years, 6 months ago

As great as this game was and as great as the start for the Jayhawks has been, the conference could very well be lost over the next 2 games.

Texas Tech presents the potential for a HUGE let-down game, especially with WVU (on the road) just two days later.

Tough two-game stretch coming!!

Gerry Butler 6 years, 6 months ago

hmmmmm did anyone see KU fans storming the court?- - -- - me neither, lol ummm hello, Iowa State fans, this is how winners act after a big win, they act like they belong

Brett McCabe 6 years, 6 months ago

I did see 75-or-so KU fans stay after the game and applaud Buddy Hield after his ESPN interview. It made me smile.

Rodney Crain 6 years, 6 months ago

Me too that was pure class. He deserved it too.

Kent Richardson 6 years, 6 months ago

He was humble and displayed ownership on the Mason steal. The Kansas class made me feel good.

Joe Ross 6 years, 6 months ago

Mason got all ball on the Hield strip near the end of the first half. Just sayin. It was not John Higgins who called the foul, though.

Shannon Gustafson 6 years, 6 months ago

Yes, that was a horrible (and untimely) call. The other one in the 3rd (?) overtime where Mason guarded him perfectly, Hield missed a 12ft jumper, and then got bailed out by the ref was also bad. Mason stayed in front of him, had his arms straight up, and didn't reach in and they still blew the whistle.

Shannon Gustafson 6 years, 6 months ago

[Edit] I think the other phantom foul on Mason that allowed Hield to tie the game was near the end of regulation.

Bville Hawk 6 years, 6 months ago

I don't understand Bill's use of Hunter. It seems that he prefers to play anyone BUT Hunter at the 5 if he can help it. Yes, Landon was better last night than he has been but if you look at his stats (last night) vs Hunter's (last night) their per minute production as far as points, rebounds, etc are comparable. I can see using Traylor more last night because he is a little better at guarding the perimeter than Hunter and certainly better than Lucas.

I just don't understand starting a guy who gives you 9 solid minutes early in the 1st half and then not ever going back to him in 55 minutes of basketball. Certainly the 5 position is one we could've subbed to keep a fresh body on the floor when fatigue was becoming a real issue late in regulation and OT.

Joe Ross 6 years, 6 months ago

With great respect, Mickelson's early minutes were non-productive, and that's putting it generously. Went 1 for 4 for 2 points. He clanked a couple from outside, but Self doesn't seem to be too enthusiastic about Hunter scoring from outside. I saw a radio show done with Bob Davis at the Salty Iguana after a game in which Hunter scored decently. The problem, Self said, was that he didn't need a guy who could score from mid-range jumpers because he had other players who could do that. He needed a big man to score in the paint area on the offensive end of the floor for the high-low and who could defend the post at the other end. Hunter did NEITHER last night in the early minutes. It appears to me that the strategy for Hunter is to start him, but the utilization after that point depends entirely on Mickelson himself. If he does well, leave him in. If he doesn't, take him out.

Bville Hawk 6 years, 6 months ago

Hi Joe, In 9 minutes all in the early going, Hunter's line: 1/4 from the field, 3 rebounds (2 O, 1 D), 3 assists, 1 TO, 1 block. What you say you heard on Bill's radio show is interesting and makes sense. I find it hard to believe, though, that a player like Hunter who has been in Bill's system for 3(?) years now would take 10 foot jumpers if he hadn't been told to "take the jumper if they give it to you," but I might be wrong.

Joe Ross 6 years, 6 months ago

Hello my friend.

Just a quick analysis of your stats. The turnover and the block neutralize each other. No net contribution there.

One for four from the field is a low percentage for a big man, and Self needs guys who can score in the paint area...especially against Oklahoma. Do you recall how when Perry went out everything fell apart for the Jayhawks? No post presence to speak of.

With the rebounds and assists, I think Coach was just thinking other bigs could match that, but Mickelson's numbers on those stats were not enough to justify that he was neither scoring nor playing great defense. It's clear to me that Self thought he needed more from a big man.

Dont get me wrong. I heaped praise on Mickelson during and after the Baylor game. I think he showed brilliance in Korea. I think the guy has the ability to bring big games. But I also think he is inconsistent and that his playing time probably shows that. My hope is that Hunter will raise his level of play to justify more time.

Tony Bandle 6 years, 6 months ago

What seems to me to be the actual key to the final stop, no one has mentioned. Perry's reach in on Spangler just before he got off a shot was huge. That big lug was bombing them in from everywhere and good ole Perry not only stopped him, knocked the ball away and ate up some seconds but put Buddy in almost an impossible shooting position.

If I am wrong someone please correct me.

PS I was at the 2007 Texas game...Buddy shot better than what's his name did in that first half!!!

Mike Riches 6 years, 6 months ago

Totally agree! Of course there were so many key plays in this game, but that one reminded me of when Mason swatted the ball away a couple years ago at the end of the Duke game. Gutsy and great play!

Bill Shaw 6 years, 6 months ago

"Unbelievable" implies that someone is not telling the truth. The truth is, it had been too long since we had back to back 100+ scores in Allen. Baylor was the old fashion blowout. OU was the hard way. Well done!

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