• Bad Ball is already proven to be no fluke.

    The team has played it and won with it for nearly an entire season.

    It has taken a loooooong time to break the old habits of trying play Good Ball, but starting sometime 3-4 games ago, despite a couple of losses, and what seems a 1300 mile slog through the basketball jungle of one of the toughest schedules played in basketball Burma, Brigadier General Frank “The Self” Merrill and his Basketball Marauders have crossed over into some kind of mastery of a new form of basketball warfare.

    @drgnslayr rightly points out that this is “grind ball,” but this is not “just grind ball.” Grind ball was in prior seasons something Self used to resort to for stretches of games. And grind ball was something that still involved traditionally good basketball play. Grind ball was, shall I say, tactical.

    What we are witnessing is something systemic. We are watching the result of early season Marine Corp indoctrination and training. We are witnessing tactics becoming strategy, as I have described on and off during the season.

    We are watching anything and everything at hand being weaponized. Kelly Oubre plays soft? Go with softness. Landen Lucas can’t dunk without falling down when he does? Go with it. Dunk and fall down. Perry can’t shoot 50% from the floor as a big man? Go with it. Base the offense on him shooting 9-21. We have a half a roster full of 40% trifectates that go in slumps? Play as if they were always in slumps. Don’t use them. Lose shooting 13 treys? Shoot 8. Jamari Traylor is so badly injured that he cannot jump at all? Start him. Use his limp for some sympathy from the refs, or something. Jamari Traylor is so badly injured that he cannot jump at all? Hold him out of the game till crunch time and have him, at a likely 6-6, block a shot simply holding his hand up. Need to get FTAs to win the game? Have Frank Mason drive 50 times and get 1 FTA. Go with what doesn’t work, and stay with what doesn’t work, to win.

    This is waaaaaaay beyond grind.

    This is the tactic of grind raised to the strategy of Bad.

    This is a season of work and discipline and practice aimed at playing systematically Bad Ball.

    This is getting a double double shooting 9-21. This is riding the back of a player that fades, and disappears at times. This is embracing what is not supposed to be good ball. And it is working. In fact, the more Self embraces Perry’s deficiencies, the MORE this team wins. Perry has not gotten better at all. Self has simply embraced what he was doing wrong earlier this season, as part of the new standard of Bad Ball. Don’t fix a weakness. Use the weakness as a strength. I don’t know exactly how this works, just like I don’t know exactly how Tesla can make a better car than the established majors after only 3 years, but this is clearly what is going on here.

    This is the biggest innovation, no make that the biggest unforeseen consequence, in how to play winning basketball, since Dean Smith dreamed up the four corners as an antidote to his greatly talented teams be stalled to death, and instead stalled other teams to death.

    I suspect within a year or so, we will begin to see the teams with the talent-stacks playing Bad Ball, too, of Self has any success with Bad Ball in the Madness, at all.

    But this is a bigger, more counter intuitive leap than the 4 corners.

    This leap redefines good.

    Bad is good now.

    Bad is not bad anymore.

    Such inversions of values at the heart of anything are very difficult to adapt to at first.

    America used to pride itself on winning wars.

    Now it prides itself not losing them–on only starting them preemptively and intermittently stirring the pot to keep the factions fighting each other until an opponent is too exhausted to resist internally, or externally. It is Bad War, the war equivalent of Bad Ball in basketball.

    We don’t beat teams. We muck things up so badly that they finally lose the ability to operate coherently; then we back into the W. And they stand their scratching their heads thinking how can that be? We out hustled them. We out intimidated them. We shot a better percentage. Hell, we have better players. But they won. Its like William Westmoreland muttering and deceiving himself by blaming politicians and American kids, and the Cambodians, and the Chinese, and the jungle canopy, and the for Ho Chi Minh having a strategy he could not only not defeat, but could not figure out how he could not defeat it. Its like Howe, and Gage and Burgoyne and Cornwallis not being able to really understand how Washington prevailed by losing every battle, but one.

    This is the essence of Bad Ball. Don’t win a single battle if you have to, maybe even botch it intentionally, if it makes sense situationally, but the last battle.

    The only battle Bad Ball is geared to win is the last one.

    For most of the season I have noted @drgnslayr rightly pointing out all of the most basic things that this team is NOT coached to do properly. No shot fakes. Players aren’t hedging worth a hang. Guys aren’t keeping track of who is behind them on defense. A true point guard plays mostly backup at the 2 and 3, or in a very big game, like Texas 2.0, barely at all, while the starting point guard, a guy learning the position on the job, is having an absolutely horrendous game statistically.

    And then it occurred to me.

    Self no longer thinks those things matter, at least with the level of talent that he now possesses.

    All that matters to Self, and to his team, is winning the last battle.

    They don’t care if you beat them 39 minutes and 59 seconds. This KU team only plays to win the last second.

    Self, the new George Washington of college basketball, plans not how to win every battle, but rather how to win the last battle.

    Self and KU are metaphorically speaking, willing to sit across the river from NYC, or in Valley Forge, or wherever, as long as it takes to get to the last battle, the only one it actually schemes to win.

    Self and his team have gone through the looking glass again.

    Maybe never to return.

    People think I am being too harsh on this team saying it plays Bad Ball.

    I am not.

    I am actually paying it the highest strategic compliment possible, as an out of the box thinker, and long time admirer of George Washington, assessing what is going on here in the asymmetric world of NCAA Division I.

    There is a way to beat what Self is doing. But it is not just by winning a game against it. One has to go deeper into it. And I am not going to do that here, because I don’t want anyone to beat us.

    This team has left the box people.

    Frankly, it has put the box in the recycling shredder.

    The basketball equivalent of Merrill’s Marauders left the program long ago. Maybe even before the season started. But it has taken a lot of training and practice and games for the players to really unlearn their old habits, and really learn the new ones, and then adapt and reshuffle when the inherent flaws have been exposed game by game by smart opponents.

    This team is playing another kind of basketball with another kind of criteria of what is good.

    And it is playing it consistently and it is playing it apparently exactly as the Mad Man of Edmond and Okmulgee, Oklahoma, envisioned it could (and would) be played all season.

    Sometime near the middle of this conference race there was a moment of truth where the team began to lose faith in the concept. Self in effects stared his team down and communicated someething like, “I don’t care about your doubts. We are going to play Bad Ball and keep playing Bad Ball, and we will lose as many games as we have to, until we learn how to win the last battle of every game we play. Or let no player come home victorious ever again in a Kansas uniform!!!”

    What once we thought was bad became good.

    And I am not kidding at all here.

    The last loss to WVU. They were playing very good Bad Ball. They just got caught by a little more asymmetric home whistle that what is increasingly egregiously normal in D1.

    That close win against TCU? They were playing almost text book Bad Ball.

    KSU? Superb Bad Ball. That just got beat by a few defensive maneuvers by Helmet Hair down the stretch that Self will adjust to for the future.

    Texas 2.0? Bad Ball mastery.

    Can they win every game winning the last battle?

    They don’t have to win every game.

    They only have to win the last battle of six games in March and April.

    That is all they are designed to do; that and win, or share, a conference title.

    They are expressly designed to play against superior teams, to constantly be beaten and out talented, and even out hustled and outshot and be given raw calls, so that they lose every battle for 39 minutes 59 seconds, but win the LAST battle.

    If in time, Self ever writes a book about this new way of playing basketball, I am confident that we will look back at this team and say, "That was the genesis of Bad Ball. Those guys were the first ones that played it the way it was supposed to be played. They were the bunch that Self finally put it all together with.

    If Self gets his roster of 10 OAD/TADs like UK and Duke, Bad Ball may go in the still born ash heap of history. It maybe forgotten by all but the coaches that really know the game–just as much of what Iba developed was forgotten, even has his high low/Carolina passing offense came to dominate basketball. Many play at Iba, but few understand Iba. Wooden deeply understood Iba. He understood Iba so well, he understood the underlying principles could be applied in full court, or half court, in single high post, or single low post, or double post, or 1-4, or four out one in.

    Mark these words: the coaches that really know the game are watching very closely what Self is doing this season.

    No one liked Hank Iba’s discovery that you could slow the same to a snail’s pace and win not one but two straight national titles. No one liked that Iba eclipsed Phog Allen’s reign as the greatest coach. Iba was never loved anywhere but Stillwater.

    No one liked Dean Smith’s Four Corners outside Chapel Hill. No one. They actively hated it. And they actively detested Dean for doing it. Even Dean hated it. He wanted a shot clock to prevent stalling. Dean invented the four corners precisely because teams were stalling on his teams with superior talent. Dean was happy when the shot clock was added to prevent stalling for entire games. He got the shot clock installed the only way he knew how. By making everyone else hate stalling as much as he did.

    I believe Bill Self does not really like Bad Ball. I am convinced he is sick of home whistles. I believe he is sick of talent stacking certain programs. But Bill Self has been faced with the rise of thug ball, and the ever increasing predicatability of a home whistle his entire career. Note: the modern home whistle is a product of systematically engineered hostile environments. I believe the home whistle and home court advantage are consistently greater now than in the old days. In the old days, the home court advantage was much more uneven. Now every road game is an exercise in overcoming engineered asymmetry. But I digress.

    Back to Self. Self has at what is supposed to have been the greatest years of his career been confronted with asymmetric talent stacking at a handful of schools that makes a mockery of college basketball. And I believe he has responded to his circumstance with as much contrarian genius as Iba and Smith before him responded to their circumstances. Like them, he has inverted the game of basketball and what defines playing it well. Self seems to be saying, "Fine, you a-holes don’t care enough about the greatest game ever invented to keep the playing field level, call the game the right way, and police those that seem apparently to be stacking talent asymmetrically, well, then here is how the game can be played that will upset all of this “wrong way” stuff that has been imposed on the game. Take this Bad Ball and see how you like it!!! I can play the game this way with a third the talent of the talent stack programs. I can win a conference title playing this way. I may win a national championship playing this way. And I can do this even if you deny me all but one difference maker.

    And isn’t this basically what Bob Huggins has been saying at WVU? Isn’t the way his team is schemed a response to being denied the same level of talent of the talent stack programs? Huggins left KSU to get home to his alma mater–a program with a proud legacy in basketball. And suddenly the recruiting dynamics took a sea change on him. Where once he could haul in Michael Beasley to Manhattan, KS, now he cannot sign comparable talent at a more advantageous location to recruit from–a place where John Beillein, no charismatic recruiting type, was able to sign a lot of talent to. Bob Huggins has found himself crossing time zones to play every road game without the level of talent he has always been able to sign at UCinn and KSU, and so he has reschemed the way he plays. He has inverted the game of basketball. He plays Bad Ball Mountaineer style.

    This talent stacking is going to backfire.

    It is already backfiring.

    It may work this season. UK is 29-0 playing in the Softeast Conference. But come the Madness, if it ever plays a game without a favorable whistle, against an accomplished Bad Ball team, it is very likely to be upset…the last second…after leading every second for 39 minutes 59 seconds.

    Talent stacking is going to produce some counter strains of basketball that are going to change how the game is played.

    To every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.

    And in emerging complexity in a heterogenious game space, like college basketball, the reactions are going to be largely unforeseen consequences.

    The last KU-WVU game, and this upcoming one, are laboratories testing two of those unforeseen consequences.

    Get ready powers that be biasing the greatest game ever invented for to the benefit of a few for motivations not yet adequately understood.

    Here come the unforeseen consequences.

  • @jaybate-1.0


    I’ve been supporting our shift to focus on the trey line for quite some time.

    But maybe there is more to the game than just looking at stats. I often think that is where us “non-coaches” fail to understand the game.

    Here is my example:

    3 weeks ago, Kansas loses to Oklahoma State. We shot 50% from trifecta. 10-20. That is 30 points off of only 20 possessions… 1.5 ppp.

    Yesterday, Kansas beats Texas. We shot only 12.5% from trey, and a whopping 36.2% from 2. We were 1 for 8 from trey.

    Maybe we need to adjust our math. Maybe our analytics have been off by only using the “short form.”

    Adjust to the “long form.” Factor in other variables.

    Is it possible our guys just can’t play tough when points come easy? Could that be true?

    Look at how Self has been praising his troops for playing tough yesterday.

    The dynamics involved in the game are complex. A successful coach does have to be as much of a psychologist as a “court schemester.”

    There is one overwhelming number that trumps everything… #11.

    In the year that everyone and their one-eyed step sister had Kansas going down on our streak. All the basketball wizards with the big mouths… they could hardly contain themselves. “Could this be the year?”… spoken gleefully by media wonks who probably has our State culture similar to the hillbillies of Appalachia.

    It’s always a blast when the world is taught a lesson about basketball. Self is 40 minutes away from doing it again!

  • @jaybate-1.0

    “Talent stacking is going to produce some counter strains of basketball that are going to change how the game is played.”

    I totally believe it already has.

    Let’s examine our very own Wigs. He chose Kansas, and all of us could hardly contain ourselves. World media deployed permanent crews in Lawrence to document his every bowel movement.

    The kid we all praised… looked like a virtual God sent from the heavens. We all bit the hook… youtube clips showing Wigs high-flying slams through his legs. And then there was his infamous spin move. None of us have ever seen a player move like that before. Not in college, and not in the NBA. Jordan couldn’t touch that spin move.

    But what we came to find out was young Wigs ONLY possessed the slam and spin as his offense. He had the athleticism of a God, but the skill set of a very standard HS player.

    It didn’t take long before our delusions were met with reality. It didn’t take long before college players had him scouted for his spin move. Suddenly Wigs had to look to create some offense. So he stepped out to the trey line with minimal results. Then Self directed him to just force it to the rim. Force contact and make a living at the FT line. To some degree that worked… at the cost of our team offense. Suddenly… the rest of our guys just turned into spectators of Wigs when he had the ball on offense. Except for a few highlight dunks… we weren’t left with much from Andrew as he departed to the NBA.

    The morale of that story is the message sent from a true God of the game… Kobe Bryant. Love him or hate him… you have to respect a guy that speaks his mind, regardless of the ripples it causes. His take on AAU ball was right on the mark. US players are not learning the basics. They are just meat on the slab, being weighed for profitability. It isn’t any different in college ball. And us fans have looked at it all wrong. We’ve started to resent the OADs for only giving a few months of their lives for college ball. But what the heck does college ball offer to them? Very, very little.

    I used to believe the fable, that Kansas knows how to develop players. I don’t believe it any longer. The players develop themselves. I feel certain they would improve the same playing just about anywhere. Why do I believe that? Because the game we watch doesn’t lie. We see so little of the fundamentals in use now. The game is a complete disaster. Players are using their raw athleticism to mask their inabilities to play fundamental basketball.

    The perfect example is watching the drive. Coaches are now trained to defend their players for not defending. They give credit to the offensive player for being “unstoppable” because of their remarkable speed. Yet that same player can’t seem to use his speed to defend. If he has such a speed advantage on offense, he would have the same advantage on defense. For some reason, that logic is lost in college basketball.

    Yes, @jaybate-1.0 , the game is under duress… the fundamentals are gone in trade for pure athleticism. And the fans are trained to only admire the athleticism and not fundamentals. Turns out… the fans aren’t as knowledgeable as they think.

    Try to find some old footage of UCLA in the Wooden era. You will see the end of fundamentals in college. Or Bobby Knight at Indiana. Play that footage today and no one will watch. It’s just like watching an old black-and-white movie. The visual action of the old classics doesn’t interest young movie watchers today. They want to see 3-d high-motion graphics and animation. Wigs is a big hit because he resembles a super action hero.

    I seriously doubt there are many young readers that understand my post here. Why? Because they have nothing to compare it to. The game seems to hold a lot of fundamentals still… hey… guys are dribbling and rarely being called for double-dribble?

    I can hardly stomach college basketball today. I do enjoy the athleticism… but without fundamentals, it’s not basketball.

    If attendance starts to drop I’m expecting a marketing guru to just start dressing the players in action hero costumes. Who will be our next Hulk? Spiderman?

  • @jaybate-1.0

    Who do we blame for this loss in fundamentals?

    It appears to be a vicious circle created by modern times.

    Every kid has cable tv… a smart phone with video capabilities. Gameboys… Xbox…

    Young kids are having their minds shifted into unreal worlds. The worlds of 3d games.

    This is where young people live.

    And when you mesh that with young athletes… you throw in SportsCenter Top 10s…

    Why would any athletic kid waste his time learning boring fundamentals. There is no sparkle to fundamentals. There is a lot of sparkle in a 45 inch vertical and a monster slam dunk.

    Young kids spend all their time focusing on super hero moves. Young Wigs did it. His spin move was (and is) something out of Spiderman. And hey… it worked. It got him to the next level each time, with media trailing right behind. Now he’s in the league… starting to learn some fundamentals for the first time! At least… enough to help his stat line and execute his super hero movies.

    So the kid athletes aren’t exactly begging for fundamentals anymore. And as Kobe said… their developmental chain is corrupted with exploitative feeders, not real coaches. The same can be said about college coaches. Never thought I’d say that… but I am sick of watching dumb basketball!

    Can we blame college coaches? I’m not sure… I recall just a few years ago… before Self sold out to the OADs. He told recruits they would have to earn their minutes. Fight hard and eventually you will earn some PT. We see where that got him. I sort of view him as a victim of the game, too. He had his morals coming in. And I know he has had to sacrifice his beliefs in order to push to the top. He had to. It’s what the fans want. And if the fans want it, the money follows, and the administration wants it, too.

    I just wish Self could get rid of some of the dead weight assistant coaches and bring in real developers. And start selling these kids that they need more than a monster slam to make it in basketball.

    As much as I despise John Calipari… I have to hand it to him… at least the guy has successfully convinced his crew of 5-star athletes that their best option is to share minutes and go with a team strategy. If he can convince them of that… surely Self can start focusing back on development and start teaching recruits and players that development will eventually give them more than a little sparkle in their games.

    @jaybate-1.0 - perhaps consider renaming “BAD BALL” to “DUMB BALL.”

  • @jaybate-1.0

    I can hardly stand to watch Kansas basketball because I start caring so deeply for our players.

    For example… Wayne Selden.

    Man… I really care about Wayne. He just seems like such a quality human being. He is so likeable.

    Wayne may easily be the strongest basketball player Kansas has EVER had! Examine his clean and jerk numbers with Hudy. The guy is a phenomenal athlete. And I know his heart is in this game. He is passionate about his basketball and wanting to help his team. For all of these reasons I have developed a man crush. I had the same man crush for EJ… the guy who made ultimate sacrifices for Self and Kansas basketball.

    Wayne was jacked up for this game. His stat line was not outstanding… but it does show that he was involved deeply in the game. He also did a reasonable job shutting down Yancy.

    With Wayne’s physique and athleticism… he should be pulling huge huge stats in college. Imagine if he was taught how to rebound? Imagine if he was given enough of the scoring basics to play at a level similar to Niang? There is no reason why Wayne shouldn’t be averaging 8+ rebounds a game. Imagine if we had a shooting guard averaging 8+ rebounds a game? And imagine if he knew how to score like Niang, but add in his remarkable athleticism with that skill set? His scoring average would be up there around 20 ppg.

    Players don’t typically develop to all that in just one year. But Wayne is on his second year. And after that… you think he’ll even get there after 4 years? I doubt it. Then Wayne will struggle to make his living in basketball going through the D-league and in Europe or some other far off place. It just isn’t fair. We will have had him for 4 years and he has the bones to be a top notch NBA player if he was developed right with 4 years of college ball development. It ain’t gonna happen!

    This is why I can hardly watch. To care about a guy so much and see the potential not even closely reached. It is tough to watch. I don’t know if I blame our coaches or the players or both. Or maybe it is just our society and what I mentioned above with young people focused on stuff like video games, Spiderman and SportsCenter.

  • @drgnslayr don’t give up hope!!👬❤❤💙💙. Your man crushes!!!

  • @drgnslayr

    Have you heard of the Buffalo Germans?

    They were 792-86 and once won 111 straight games.

    They are one of only five teams inducted into the BHOF.

    They were coached by Fred Burkhardt, who learned the game from James Naismith, when Burkhardt was among the boys that played at the Springfield YMCA, before Naismith went west to University of Denver to get a medical degree.

    In the Naismith coaching tree, Burkhardt is the forgotten branch–the YMCA branch.

    Basketball had at least three distinct branches until WWI.

    The branch that Naismith brought with him to KU–the college branch.

    The professional branch that grew up entirely beyond his influence in the eastern seaboard cities under the influence of both entrepreneurs and gamblers.

    And the YMCA branch, of which the Buffalo Germans were the most famed members of.

    The Germans were a group of German-American youth that started playing around 13 and played for a decade or so. They played all comers any where any time, pro or college, if I recall correctly, but mostly other YMCA teams. They played lots of town teams. They played games in streets and in YMCAs, and in parks and where ever. They sometimes played 5 official games in a day and I suspect probably many more than 5 in a day unofficially.

    YMCA ball was its own kind of basketball. The Germans were the best of it, but it is believed that at the time of their greatest dominance they were not as good as some professional teams of the time. They were probably better than many if not most college teams.

    The boys played a brand of basketball that came and went; that was eclipsed by pro and college styles of play, not because it was better, but because the college and pro games were more economically viable.

    But they accomplished the following.

    Won Pan American Championship, 1901
    Won Olympic exhibition title in St. Louis, 1904 Went undefeated in five of first eighteen seasons Won 111-straight games, 1908-10

    These things may be willingly forgotten. But by anyone that knows the game and really understands it, what this handful of boys did in the game’s early years stands with anything KU has done, anything the Harlem Globe Trotters did, anything UCLA did, anything that ever happened in the Rucker Leagues, anything any ethnic group has ever done , anything any religious group has done, anything that ever happened in the NBA, the ABA, or the Olympics.

    And yet, we do not begrudge the future for not being like them. For being different. For evolving to fit the new economics that have always underpinned the game.

    My father, who played high school and some college ball in the 1930s, was unequivocally mornful through my time in the game in the 1960s. The fundamentals of shooting and passing had been jettisoned as a result of the jump shot of Hank Luisetti (encouraged by Allen Disciple John Bunn at Stanford), by the height of the early footers and later by the jumping abilities of African Americans. Height, jumping, dunking and physical contact killed off most of the beauty and skill of the game he had grown up with and loved. And he was as absolutely correct in his way regarding his game, as you are regarding the game of our time.

    Meso-Ballers would hate what their game has become, even as they would love the monies and education once could get from it today.

    I am supremely confident that Wayne Selden, when he is in his 60s will look at the game of his time and feel pity for the players and the way they play it.

    Loss is a bitch.

    And when one reaches the time of one’s life where the game has morphed from the game we grew up with, the loss is enormous.

    You are so right that today’s players really have little conception of what you are talking about.

    I look at the OAD players today and I can increasingly see that they know nothing at all about anything that cannot be learned in AAU ball, when they start out at UK, Duke and KU. Nothing.

    I can see that Cal just goes with it.

    I can see that Coach K and Self still try to teach certain aspects of the old fundamentals, knowing their isn’t time, or personnel, or will to learn, to teach them all.

    But Self, Cal and Coach K are practically anachronisms already.

    But I don’t feel bad for them.

    I feel bad for Kevin Ollie.

    He and his generation of coaches and assistants are the ones that change are going to obsolete soonest.

    Ollie grew up the old way. He probably even played some street ball, unlike Wayne, and Cliff, and Kelly.

    Ollie coached in the L when it was still full of street ballers and full of coaches and assistants that had been street ballers.

    I really believe the street is dead.

    Frank Mason appears the only guy on the KU team, for example, that plays like he spent a lot of time on a playground, or even a neighborhood gym.

    Ollie could easily soon going to be eclipsed by the AAU coaches and the college assistants that came up through the AAU system.

    And if Ollie isn’t eclipsed, then he will soon be this dinosaur talking to kids about stuff that you and I would recognize but that the other assistant coaches and so on will have no clue of.

    And the economics of the situation will not favor what Ollie know any better than the economics favored what Iba knew with in five years after he won two rings, or that Ted Owens knew after he didn’t quite win his rings, and got the force out, because everyone had forgotten the significance of what Owens’s knowledge of Bruce Drake’s shuffle, and Dick Harp’s and Phog Allen’s games meant in the changing game of basketball after Wooden did what he did and made persons think that Drake no longer mattered, that Harp and Allen no longer mattered.

    Dean Smith adopted the high low post offense from Iba’s olympic team innovation, because he had been running Bruce Drake’s shuffle that he had picked up at Air Force Academy, but believed that the Shuffle was too hard for the guys to learn at UNC. Running the Shuffle meant you had to teach one offense for m2m and a different offense for zone. Smith thought neither of the offenses he taught really let his super athletic players impact the way they could if he just taught a single offense–Iba’s new high low.

    Is it the game that is dumber today, or the players?

    How can the OAD players of today not learn an offense that was devised in 1964 to be learned in 3 weeks by players invited to the Olympics?

    Simple, today’s OAD players have only played AAU ball when they are asked to play high low. They don’t have the fundamentals the four year college players had that were invited to the 1964 Olympic games.

    But the problem is: look at UK’s new guys trying to play the Dribble Drive. They really don’t have the fundamentals for that offense either.

    The basic high low offense is a brilliant offense. And it is super easy to learn.

    Frankly, I’ve looked at the Dribble Drive and the reason iits days are numbered is that it relies on basic play ground abilities and fundamentals. The high school coach that developed it was coaching mostly play ground kids at his high school. And as we both know, basic play ground abilities are disappearing rapidly. So: the Dribble drive may actually be tougher for players to master than Iba’s old high low. In fact, I suspect that one of the reasons that UK consistently performs so far below its talent levels is the Dribble Drive offense itself. Cal relies on OAD players that haven’t grown up on the play grounds. Even the poorest among them have been plucked off the play grounds by they time they are 13-14 and shoved onto the AAU conveyor belts. But I digress.

    My point here is that the game changes, as the economic framework supporting it changes.

    The Buffalo Germans and their way of playing the game were no doubt things of great beauty and fundamentals of their times fully mastered.

    But the game changes.

    The fundamentals of one era are often drastically different from those of another era.

    But it does not mean there are no fundamentals being taught.

    I am sure the AAU coaches are teaching a brand of fundamentals.

    And economics of shoes and agents may finally determine those will be prevalent for a generation or so.

    But that too will change.

    The irony of all of this is that it could turn out that the High Low becomes (maybe already is) easier teach to these AAU players than the Dribble Drive. life is full of little ironies like this.

    But of course the next big thing that will replace the Dribble Drive and the High Low is being born somewhere on some court more fitting to these times of disappearing playgrounds and rising foreign inference and most importantly of all, in the suburban gyms where the African Americans are moving into suburbia and playing with Caucasian Americans, Hispanic Americans and every other kind of Americans. Its going to produce something awesome.

    Trust me.

    Wayne is going to be okay.

    He will probably turn out to be the guy that comes up with the new offense suited for the suburban AAU context.

    Often guys that were great talents that get injured and have to learn to play another way give the game much deeper thought than the ones that didn’t.

    Its the greatest game ever invented.

    Rock Chalk!!!

  • @drgnslayr You know, I love Wayne. But in December, I was at the Lafayette game. I arrived early and watched early warmups from the bleachers. Wayne is a really big guy. He is a good defender because he works hard at it. But, seeing how big he is, I can see why he might have a hard time keeping up with quicker 2 or 3 men. Also, why he isn’t quite the ballhandler that we maybe thought he was. But, I am very glad he is a Jayhawk.

  • @jaybate-1.0

    Wow… you blew me away with that post! Many thanks, my friend. And thanks for the history lesson!

  • @drgnslayr So are you saying that Coach Self isnt able to develop his players? Im not being critical here, just inquisitory. Another question, what Are his clean and jerk numbers with Hudy? I actually wanna know. I mean, the kid is a beast. The strongest ever? For real? I mean, Tyrel Reed wasn’t the most athletic kid on the team but he was one of the strongest. I’d also put TRob on that list, he was a monster in person.

  • @jaybate-1.0




    You are SO in Bill’s tank, lol.

  • @KUinLA, How about providing us some of your own insight on how we got the 11th with this team? Analytical in me would like to know because it HAS been painful, dumbfoundingly painful to watch KU play. I’d appreciate your analysis.

  • Bad ball assumes you have the energy to go for 40 minutes. You have to have a very good guard and some forwards that don’t mind running up and down the court for their health. In WV case you have to be able to take a cussing without choking the coach to death. As they say WV kids come from places the grass don’t grow in the yard and no parents to bother you. Hugs is doing the raising.

    That’s not Bill Self’s style and I can appreciate that to some extent. Some of these kids are not all that tough but BS can help that along and going to college can help that as well. It does take getting away from Mom and spending more time with other kids from other places in the world. That usually takes a couple of years.

  • @KUinLA Are you referring to the Abrams tank that just blew up your POV for an 11th title?


  • @jaybate-1.0 Don’t recall if I ever said we wouldn’t win the conference this year. But I do recall your ridiculous post after the OU game, where you totally misunderstood what happened in the second half, and predicted we wouldn’t lose another conference game. Got a good laugh out of that, thanks!

  • Banned

    I mean no disrespect to the deep thoughts being posted.

    However we are playing bad ball because HCBS is being stubborn. Now let me say I maybe wrong and HCBS is a genius. After all he gets paid really well to coach, and I just pound away at my keyboard with my arm chair beliefs. Yet this team’s real strength is shooting the three. It really is.

    Now some make the claim that we lost this game or this game even though we shot the three ball at a high %. Well my rebuttal would be that have lost just as many games playing the high/low and not shooting the three at all. Just saying.

    HCBS has been rock solid in conference play. I think that speaks for it’s self. However lets look at his tournament success or the lack of. Yes HCBS has had some success in the tournament, but man he’s had some stinkers too. As a fan ask yourself this question? How many times after exiting the tournament did we as fans say to ourselves, “Where was the three ball?” Also in those games that sent us home how many of those teams had a key player just get hot from three land and KU had no answer?

    The high/low is a consistent way of winning games, but in the tournament crazy things happen, and if you can’t shoot the three? Well then you come home.

  • @KUinLA



  • @DoubleDD I wish you could at least enjoy a lil of this season. I’m thinking the 3 will go down tonight. Rock chalk!! Time to celebrate 11!

  • @DoubleDD

    Don’t worry about the three. We have already proven we can shoot the trey whenever we need to. Now that we don’t need to, we’ll be even more deadly when/if we choose to do so again.

    Self proved everyone wrong. The team could win a title attacking inside.

    No reason to think they can’t do it in the Madness.

    And now that they have big averaging 22 ppg inside, won’t that open those treys up?

    Yes, wide open.

    Don’t fight this with deep think and resistance of what has worked.

    Enjoy the bubbly.

    And know that Self is now in position to completely switch gears yet again.

    He is a wily one!

  • Banned


    Oh I am, I never give up it’s the one flaw I have LOL. However as I’ve gotten older I’ve learned to see things for what they are. I still root for a miracle when needed. ')

  • I can’t wait for the game…I think we’re going to destroy the Hillbillies. Run outs galore. After this game, WVU might be tempted to stop payment on that “Huggie beat KU” bonus check.

  • 2015 is filled with young guards and wings, Freshmen and Sophomores. This has impacted the way KU plays ball. Whenever I feel the pain of watching this team it is often with the thought “this team is young”. No Seniors nor Juniors play in the backcourt and that will produce some painful viewing.

    Self said that he held Mason (Soph) back last year and could have given him more opportunities at the point. Graham (Fresh) hurt his toe in December and missed too much of winter break. Selden (Soph) emerges from the shadow of Wiggins his Sophomore year and gets is first crack at being Alpha Male. Greene (Soph) learns over the course of the year that he needs to play better defense, which has improved, and he has had several moments to shine for the deepening of his confidence to shoot it. Svi (Fresh) may be the best prospect on the team, he got minutes early in the season to give him a taste and now he has had the time to settle into living in America while playing big time ball. Oubre (Fresh) has played his way onto the the final 10 for National Freshman of the Year–thanks for playing at Kansas Kelly!

    Next year Kansas will NOT be young. For our rotation of Five in the backcourt we most likely get Four back from our 2015 Big XII Championship team and Oubre’s replacement is an elite prospect who has had a year of practicing and playing with the team. It would be fascinating to know what skills they will be having each player focus on over the summer.

    This year Bill Self could not give in. Bill Self had to keep the course. Coach had to hammer into his players that the closer to the rim a shot leaves your hands the higher the percentage you will make it. Three bombs create long rebounds offering breaks the other direction are reduced. Attacking the glass on offense means you have to be aggressive and attack with your attitude, your body, your skill. Attacking is not about analytics and numbers and higher probabilities which tell you what your strengths are. No, your attitude is not a number. Putting the other team on their heels through attacking the defense in the paint is not an analytic. If you are looking too much at the box score you are missing the game on the court. It’s not just being a psychologist either. You have to believe in heart, and you must try to impose your will onto the game, and, letting it go with confidence to make wise, winning plays may be the most crucial of it all.

    Next year we will have a wiser group. They will have had time to develop more skill. They will have had time to contemplate what they accomplished and be able to focus on what will make them even better. Next year we return a group that will reprise their roles and they will have an opportunity to rise, as a team, be a more mature brand of Bill Self Ball. Bill Self Ball is always a relationship with his players and always a work in progress.

  • @jaybate-1.0 Wrong, wrong and wrong. You can’t just ‘shoot the trey whenever we need to.’ It’s not a light switch you can just turn on when you want. In fact, the 3 requires more confidence than any other shot. People who’ve played the game know that. And confidence needs to be built up and maintained. By putting it into practice. That’s part of the coach’s job.

    And Bill didn’t win the conference by attacking inside. In fact, he almost lost it by attacking inside, going 2-2 in his last four, losing to a non-tournament team and almost losing at home (in Allen Field House?) to two probably non-tournament teams. In the Madness, we’ll face better teams than those. And not in Allen Field House.

    And did averaging 22 ppg inside open up the 3’s in the last four games? Nope, not at all. Because opposing coaches are game-planning to shut down our 3game. That’s their best chance of beating Kansas.

  • @KUinLA


  • @jaybate-1.0 I’m thinking the word of the night is “BOOYAH”.Lots of rim rattling dunks created by Huggie’s 40 minutes of mildly annoying defense, which we’ll run into the ground tonight .I’m thinking Devonte has another 20 point night tonight.


    I’m thinking Self could skip the next two games and KU would still tie for the title. 🙂


    My hunch is that he sat Devonte for the last game so he would be fresh as a daisy for this game.

    I think Devonte and Frank are going to take turns guarding and running Staten till his butt falls off.

    Self has always believed: cut off the head and the body dies.

    This game will be about breaking Staten.

    Staten is one man with not much behind him.

    The press masks that by forcing the ball quickly away from Staten.

    I believe Self will try to keep the ball in front of Staten, until he runs out of gas and then I believe they will drive him till he either drops, or gets in foul trouble.

    Staten is the strength.

    Break the strength and WVU will come undone.

  • @jaybate-1.0 Run, run,young Jayhawks…like the wind!!!

    LOL. I know…I know…

  • Staten is DNP tonight…

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