The 3 has been freed...(not really)

  • As we saw vs UCLA, there are 3 ways to bust a zone: penetration & ball movement, 3ptrs, transition opps. KU used all to blow out a rebuilding royalty program.

    I could postulate, that it was Coaching101 to leave a misfit (BG) at home, allowing team chemistry to shine, & the kids to play focused without wondering if BG is pissed about his touches or minutes…but I dont have to, since that is old news.

    My main point is to see all the in-rhythm, openlook 3att’s that Self didnt seem to have any issue with. In the flow of the offense, and hardly any as buzzer beaters. So in terms of 3% analytics and theory–> these are the best types of 3s to be shooting. Did Svi really have 11 3pt att’s? Yes! And no quick yank? Graham, Selden, Perry, Svi, BG, Mason–> we got a ton of >38% 3pt shooters. Bragg may have a 3gun as well…

    But my second point is that certain shooters always have had a “green light” on 3s: even from day 1. Rush, Sherron, Chalmers, Brady, Reed, Teahan, Greene, Frankamp (just couldnt hit em all season), Tyshawn, Elijah, Selby, Selden, Wiggins, Oubre, Morris Twins, and “developed” RussRob & Releford.

    Self’s point about “settling” for 3’s at the expense of running the offense is where a game’s trend can take you to the fool’s gold concept: (team starts off hot from 3, then cools off, while opponent keeps chipping away and catches you, while your 3% with enough atts, will actually “regress to the mean (season avg %)”.

    So the “fool’s gold” isnt a knock on the 3ball, but truly an in-game phenomenon where you may go to the well too many times in that game. He wants players to develop and be well-rounded. That’s always been Self’s m.o.–> take high talent h.s. scorers, & turn them into complete players, which makes his KU teams a threat from every position.

    Look at the 3wing. Self says, until Wiggins came along years later, that Brandon Rush was his best wing player, and he was. Watched a freshman game of his, & he was everywhere on both ends of the court, defending, rebounding, shooting 3s from day 1. Andrew White couldnt do all that. Wiggins could. Releford got to where he could. XHenry was borderline at it, and Selden was sporadic. Selden likes the highlight pass, so we should commend his unselfishness, while we see if he develops that ptp’er mentality, in games we need him.

    The corollary to the 3ball, is if you use it as a ‘foundation’ piece, you will live and die by it as IowaSt and Duke have repeatedly proven. Any team can get hot & go off from 3, & get surprise wins…but what happens? They regress to the mean…law of averages. Look at VCU’s lone cinderella run, ya beat overall 1seed (ku)…a game that actually got Shaka the TX job (according to his own infamous comments this April), yet he’s had trouble recreating his own success he had in 2011, hasnt he? They got to the final four and couldnt sustain their 3%, were overmatched, & got bounced. And we dont even need to discuss UNI, right? For Ben Jacobsen hasnt duplicated anything, as he now toils in the MVC shadow of Gregg Marshall, whose hard-nosed playstyle is from the same page as Self’s. Gameflow, in-rhythm 3s. Same as KY: Cal gets p.o.'d when they start chukking too many 3 misses. Cal said they got away from “feeding Karl Anthony Towne”, in their seadon-ending loss. Must have balance.

    Recall the zone-busting 08 champs? 3s were an integral part of their “toolkit”, but not their identity, like it is with IowaSt. Subtle difference?

    Recall also those 08 champs, & how many ugly games they were able to win, when they only made 1-2 treys in the whole game? There have been KU wins with zero 3s made. The 2012 runner up Hawks are a good example of a team finding ways to win on cold shooting nights. They actually epitomized that in every tournament game, except the final one…a game and the type of opponent you need every gun you have, or you lose.

    Final point: there is no “magic” number or balance on 3 att for Self: it depends how efficient a team is with it. Shooting good %? Keep working the O, but come back repeatedly to the 3–I mean you still should run offense to keep the opposing D guessing… But if your 3 goes cold…you’ll have to rely on other elements of the offense, if you have developed them, wont you?

  • @ralster I was drinking last night but I could have sworn that Mickelson attempted a 3! The fools gold Self was not in attendance last night! The WUG Self coached our guys last night! Jekyll and Hyde who coaches tonight?

  • We’ll never actually know if Self has had a bit of philosophy shift, or not, unless someone wants to tabulate % of shot att that are 3ptrs, compared to past KU teams, maybe compared to last season, as most of the roster is the same…is this year different?

    We definitely see he is OK with in-rhythm threes. We also know he’s ordered Graham, Mason, Selden to put pressure on opposing Ds with the dribble-drive. Get to the FT line, or “drive-to-pass instead of drive-to-score”, meaning drive to lob it, pocket pass, or kick out for a 3att.

    If anyone’s played this game, getting those passes in-rhythm actually initiates your shooting motion form…enhances your form & timing. Herky-jerky off-target passes can really screw up a shooter’s 3% & timing as he has to re-gather himself.

    The main gamefilm issues vs MichSt, was the myriad of point-blank misses. Just needed about 3 of Mason + Graham’s fouled att to drop, & allow for 3 pt play. And cannot miss front-end of 1&1 FT opportunities. Guys gotta finish plays. Lucas bunnies is another tale of tape. Credit earned by Lucas for his doule-double vs ucla. Everything looked better vs UCLA. Chaminade/Div2 game doesnt matter as much, other than as glorified scrimmage.

    Biggest thing is to not get rattled by name opponent or big lights scenario. Perry Ellis has become rock solid.

  • @ralster nice post. You are right. We have won without three pointers. And our 2012 team epitomized a team the type of team that could do that. Including last season, 2e haven’t shown the ability to score inside like TRob did against bigger/longer teams – tonight will be a test of that.

    I would suggest that this team, much like last year’s team, is a perimeter based team. The strength of this team lies on the perimeter. This team, much like last year’s team, needs the perimeter focus (and the requisite three point shooting) to win the national title.

    This team is and can be more potent from the outside than last season’s team. Bragg brings a terrific perimeter player we didn’t have. And Mickelson can step out and shoot (see the step out shot at 4:00 min mark vs. Chaminade – bad, bad opponent, but an example of a skill that translates to any opponent).

    I just think it’s early with this team. We don’t know which way Self is going to jump. We know what history says. Let’s hope we see a softening.

  • @HighEliteMajor Agreed. Personally, I am really curious if Self will continue to allow the 3ball showers. Vandy has, like 3 7ftrs? Yikes! We know what that has meant in the past for this roster.

    Agree 100% on Bragg & Mickelson. Vandy will be a real test.

    Against UCLA, our guys obviously got amped up vs the “name” opponent. But against Vandy, they’re going to have to grind against a team with fouls-to-give height/trees, and a team that is dangerous from deep w/multiple 3 shooters. Vandy is another MichSt-type of true test.

  • @ralster

    I look at it this way…

    If we have a shooter, like BG, and he is wide open from 3. Except for late game strategy where we might want to run clock… is there any reason why Self would object to him taking the shot?

    Over the past 5-7 or so years I have seen a huge shift in the NBA perspective… and now it is influencing D1 more and more.

    Teams used to “settle” for 3s. Now… they “promote” for 3s, by running offense trying to open up the trey.

    I noticed this a lot in the past few years with the SA Spurs, sometimes running elaborate schemes to open up the trey.

    Now, Golden State will sometimes give up an uncontested dunk to throw it out for a trey shot.

    I’m not sure there is so much a shift in attitudes as there is just the realization of more offense run specifically to free up the trey shot. By making that adjustment, the percentages are climbing and bean counters are going wild with this, now proclaiming the “trey offense” as the way to go.

    We have experienced our guys ice cold from “bunnyland.” So what risk are we taking by using an offensive scheme that frees open the trey shot? In the least, it can help open up more post scoring. Outside-in.

    I think, in the past, our issue is that we always run the same set, and run options through just one set.

    If we run more sets and fewer options for each one, we open up more possibilities for trey exploitation.

    It didn’t always work… but I am liking the use of Traylor sometimes receiving the ball in the high post and driving the ball. That seems to totally rattle defenses. Typically, there are few post players with the same quickness of Jamari. The quicker defender is over guarding Perry. I think that is the potential we can realize with a player like Jamari… and I hope, soon, we can replace some of Jamari’s minutes for Cheick.

  • @ralster Figuring out the actual % of 3 point FGA isn’t hard because you only need 2 numbers for that (FGA and 3 point FGA). The actual hard work is in figuring out where that number is relative to the rest of the country.

    That said, in one of the post MSU threads, someone posted a link to an article that talked about that number. 5 years ago (the last Final Four team), KU attempted 33% of the total FGA from 3. That number went down each year to a Bill Self era low of 28% last year despite KU being a top 50 3 point shooting team last year at 38%.

    The concerning thing about that stat is that KU was also a horrible shooting team inside of 5 feet last year. KU left a lot of points on the floor last year because they didn’t take near enough advantage of their 3 point shooting ability. The way this team shoots, KU needs to be north of 35% of their total FGA from 3.

  • For those who love the metrics of the game, this article suggests a seismic shift in the NBA game:

    • " It’s as if at some point in the past few years, the Warriors solved contemporary basketball, at least perimeter basketball. They know that 3-pointers are the best way to rack up points on offense, so they developed talent and tactics to master that. But they have also employed defensive principles to prevent their opponents from doing so on the other end."

  • @HighEliteMajor

    You can win without the three ball if you have a lottery pick in the post. KU does not have that right now. If we had an Embiid, or an Okafor, or a Towns or someone like that on the low block, we could certainly win by allowing that guy to dominate games.

    But we have Perry Ellis who, while very good, cannot flat out dominate night in and night out. We have no one in the post that we can just dump the ball in to time after time and get either a bucket or a foul.

    That’s why the three ball is critical. I hope that Self saw last year that pounding the ball inside actually limited Perry’s effectiveness as the season wore on because he was banging against bigger, stronger players all year. Let Perry punish smaller guys on the block, but against bigger players, he should be facing up with regularity.

    As @Texas-Hawk-10 points out, KU is actually not very good inside, due in large part to the fact that KU isn’t really all that big in the post and lacks a dominant big man that can own the paint. Shooting a poor interior percentage means that KU gives away points by throwing the ball inside for “easy” shots because KU can’t hit them at an average to above average rate.

  • @justanotherfan Valid comments. Our strength is on the perimeter and that should be the primary focus

  • Diallo from what I have heard is going to put 7 Jayhawks in double figures scoring. How about them apples? When have we ever had that problem? In fact I have heard that we will see a major increase in transition buckets on top of what we already have. The reason he is so valuable is he will score 10-12 more points in transition buckets/putbacks each game. Its not really about set plays for him he gets his own and will wear other bigs out in a hot hurry. I am salivating just thinking about how bad we are going to run up the score board. DIALLO IS FREE!!!

  • @justanotherfan Truth is, KU hasn’t been good inside since Embiid got hurt.

  • @HighEliteMajor Tarik Black had some moments!

  • @ParisHawk I love the Black reference … he was the only big that could score vs. Stanford. The fact that he made an NBA roster was no coincidence. Wish we had the dude four years.

  • T-Shirt I would love:


  • Banned

    Great posts Jayhawk faithful, but I think you guys are missing on a very important point about this team and shooting the three.

    To many times we just focus on the mere numbers. Like how many 3’s are shot and how many are made. Yet good jump shot shooters know a good shot and when it’s bad. I know we can’t make to strong of a case for the current events as KU has beat up on average to below average teams. Yet the point is allow a shooter to shoot when they have the shot without punishment for missing allows the team to play freely.

    Sadly as a fan and even a coach when a player is missing the shot we don’t want them to shot anymore. When in fact we should demand them to shoot it more. The 3 point shot is not some lucky shot. When a gun slinger finds his rhythm? It means somebody is getting their ass handed to them.

  • @DoubleDD but, Svi wasn’t given the quick hook.

  • Banned


    I know that’s what I’m talking about. Maybe I didn’t explain it my point very clearly? Think of it in this way. Say you’re Greene, or a hot shooting guard. Yet if you miss a couple three’s the coach pulls you out of the game. Would you not be a bit more nervous about pulling the trigger on a 3 point shot even though you maybe wide open for fear that you miss and be taking out of the game?

    That’s why I say it’s more than KU shooting the three. It’s letting the kids play.

  • @DoubleDD he didn’t pull Svi!

  • @DoubleDD Cliff Notes to my 8 year list of KU “green light” 3 shooters. Self doesn’t sit a guy for missing a good-look 3att. He pulls the kid for turnovers or defensive lapses. That’s what BGreene doesn’t get. His tirade of being the “best player on the floor” showed he was CLUELESS (Mason and Ellis and Selden and Graham were in earshot). And a poor, poor teammate.

  • @ralster thank you!

  • Banned


    OK Whatever? I happen to love Greene he has passion, and wants to take the big shots. Not sure how this turned to Greene? Yet ok

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