Jan 7 Headlines: Andrew White's Return; Cindy Self's Advice


    ####KU’s White ‘back in the flow’ after hip injury####

    It was only three minutes, but Andrew White III was happy to get back on the court Sunday after missing Kansas’ previous three games with a hip injury. “It felt good,” the KU guard said. "I just tried to bring energy and do my job.

    ####Wife tells Bill Self to heed his own words####

    Bill Self warned Kansas University basketball fans to be ready for ups and downs as his young Jayhawks aged during the 2013-14 campaign.

    “I actually got a text today from my spouse (Cindy) reminding me I said, ‘Enjoy the process,’” Self said Monday night on his “Hawk Talk” radio show.

    ####Newell: Recap: Forget other factors … KU’s shooting to blame for SDSU loss####

    Kansas’ interior offense isn’t invincible. The Jayhawks entered Sunday’s game with the second-best 2-point percentage in the nation (58 percent) and was completely taken out of their game by SDSU’s athletic back line while making just 13 of 41 2s (32 percent). The Aztecs’ defense had a lot to do with KU’s struggles, but the Jayhawks also simply missed some shots as well.

  • @jesse_newell - Shooting cures many woes. Cannot agree more.

    I called Hawk Talk last night and asked coach Self about the double teaming in the post, and our approach. Specifically, I asked about cutters and not attacking. I was curious as to why we appeared out of sorts there. Seemed to completely take us out of our game.

    Coach Self was pretty direct in his response. He said their strategy was when the post man dribbled back out of the double team, to send a cutter to the basket. He said they didn’t do a very good job of that and pointed out that KU only scored once on it (citing the Mason example I had referred to). Self cited an example when Black had a cutter but tried a cross court pass. But it sounded like they wanted to send a cutter, but failed to recognize it properly when the post man retreated from the double team.

    He made the point of having to make them pay when they doubled, and that they didn’t do a good job of that. Self also said that the double teaming in the post negated their post advantage, and they didn’t react well to it.

    He mentioned that they knew ahead of time that Fisher would employ this strategy, but Self said at the end of his comment that he “didn’t get them playing the way they should have against that (referring to the trap).” Self was quite candid and took responsibility for it.

    I posted this in response to @jaybate on another thread -

    Do not believe your own negativity. Refuse to believe it. I promise you that the issues on this team are not as broad as you believe right now. There are technical items to correct. That is mainly a young team learning from its coach. But it is also a coach learning from his team. Self blew it yesterday in prepping these guys for the post double team (more on that tomorrow). That took our post guys out of the game. This team needed more coaching and prep. We saw it vs. Villanova … we got stung hard by the press. Coach is learning his team. He learned more yesterday.

    And I promise you … cross my heart … we get a little outside shooting going from three, and you will see the parting of the Red Sea. It is a magical thing.

    Positivity, my man. This is like a Rubik’s cube. A freaking mess … until it isn’t. Just have to know what colors to rotate, and which way.

    I sense Self is still feeling that out.

    The more I think about this, the more I am convinced that coach Self is really figuring out how much coaching this team needs, and the kind of prep it needs. Much different than the last few years. But again, shooting is a magical thing. And when those Rubik’s cube colors rotate the right way, watch out. We aren’t that far away.

  • As of yesterday tickets were still available for our OU game:

    January 6, 2014 (from OU Site)


    NORMAN, Okla. – It’s a big week for the Oklahoma men’s basketball team, as it will take on a pair of top-25 opponents at Lloyd Noble Center.

    The 12-2 Sooners, who won 88-85 at Texas on Saturday to begin Big 12 Conference play, will host No. 16 Kansas on Wednesday at 6 p.m. CT before hosting 13th-ranked and undefeated Iowa State on Saturday at 11 a.m. CT.

    OU is off to its best start in five years and second-best start since the 2004-05 season when it shared the Big 12 regular season title with Kansas.

    The Sooners rank fourth nationally with their 87.3 points per game. The last time they averaged more points per contest for an entire season was during the 1993-94 campaign (87.4), which was the last under head coach Billy Tubbs.

    Tickets remain for both games this week (limited number for Kansas contest) and can be purchased here or by calling the OU Athletics Ticket Office at (800) 456-4668.

  • @HighEliteMajor -

    “Positivity, my man. This is like a Rubik’s cube. A freaking mess … until it isn’t. Just have to know what colors to rotate, and which way.”

    There is just no way to say it better than that! Brilliant!

    This team needs work, lots of work… but we knew that starting this season that it would be full of bumps for these freshmen. As much as it hurts to lose… maybe the best thing ever for us was to lose many times to wake up these freshmen into following their coach better.

    I think many of these freshmen have different personalities than what we are used to having. It seems like it is taking longer for Self to reach some of them. I never would have thought this way before the season started, but I think Selden is one of those guys that is slow to catch on to Self. But… I think he tries real hard, maybe too hard, so his efforts look slow because he is thinking way too much while being on the floor. We’ve seen tiny glimpses of his potential… and imagine what difference it will make to this team to have him playing well!! Go, Wayne!

    These guys all need to loosen up out there and be confident and motivated. If we were the same team that beat Duke a while back that in itself would be good enough to beat 99% of our competition… that was before they were coached up. But back then they brought in plenty of mojo from HS. They need to get back to being loose, confident and motivated! Bring back the mojo, fellas!

    We can help them most by staying positive and focus on positive ways to show them how to improve.

    Every couple of days another color to a side gets solved and we come closer to finishing the Rubik’s cube… and if we get stuck we can always call Kevin Young to help us solve the next step! Mr. Rubik’s Cube!

  • @HighEliteMajor That was a great question, and got a direct answer. It really helps understanding Coach Self’s thoughts and the team’s understanding. Well done!

  • I want to suggest something without getting killed for continuing to beat a dead horse, and since this feed mentions “Andrew White’s Return,” I think it’s fitting…

    One of the most anticipated things about the start of this season was how incredibly deep this roster was going to be. I remember going to one of the exhibition games at the beginning of the year (albeit an exhibition) and with about ten minutes left in the game, Self took all five players out and put an entirely new set in. I thought, ‘ok, here come the scrubs.’ Not so. Not a single one of the five coming in was an Evan Manning, Justin Wesley, or Niko Roberts. And I couldn’t help but think, that’s something we can legitimately do this year. Incredible.

    Now, one third of the way through the season we are locked into an eight-man rotation. With the starters being: Tharpe, Embiid, Selden, Wiggins and Ellis. Our three off the bench are Black, Mason, and Traylor. Sure, there’s a Lucas sighting every once in a while, and sometimes even Greene or White get a couple of minutes, but for the most part that’s our rotation.

    Now, go back to the beginning of the season when we were all giddy with anticipation of this roster’s depth. Imagine a game like the one on Sunday where we have White and Greene in the game (I’m sure the basketball aficionados will be critical of suggesting something like this as it would mean that Greene would be playing the three, and Wiggins would be out of the game with Perry playing the four or Wiggins being forced to play the four), Embiid gets doubled in the post and is able to kick it out to the perimeter where we’re able to move the ball efficiently around the perimeter to the open shooter and drill the open three. Maybe this is just my delusion, but the prospect of being able to do things like that is why we were all so excited at the beginning of the year.

    Clearly, suggesting lineups like this come at the cost of other player’s minutes. As @dylans pointed out in a post earlier today about out team’s PER, some of our starters are leaving much to be desired. I’m sorry to pick on Wayne Selden, but he is a player averaging 26 minutes and has one of the lowest PERs (10.5) on our team. And before anyone jumps to point out to me that Greene is at a 5.7 PER, take into consideration that he is averaging 6 minutes a game, and hasn’t even appeared in 4 of our games. The same can be said for Andrew White who is at a 17.6 PER and averaging 8 minutes a game. The statistics are there to provide the evidence. As Jesse Newell has continued to point out, Selden’s defense is not as good as everyone seems to think; as @HighEliteMajor pointed out yesterday, it may be a bit of a Red Herring. Also, let me be clear, because I know this argument is not popular with some who believe Selden is the better option, I’m not suggesting that Self bury Selden on the bench, but 5-7 (if not more) of his minutes can be distributed to someone else because I can’t help but think if we are able to nail some threes in games where we have really struggled to shoot, we beat SDSU and Villanova.

    The same argument can be made for Lucas over Black. Lucas has played less than a third of the minutes that Black has and has almost half the amount of rebounds as Black. In his limited time, Lucas has performed very well. Again, I’m not suggesting that we bury Black on the bench, but giving Lucas some more time may help us in games where we get killed on the boards.

    This team lacks confidence. But this is two-sided. The bad news is the lack of confidence is contagious. The good news is, the spread of confidence, or swagger as HEM put it is also contagious, and a deafening and raucous AFH doesn’t hurt either.

    I could probably go on, but my first day of graduate school awaits! Let me know what you guys think.


  • @MoonwalkMafia forget Traylor?

  • @Crimsonorblue22 Yes. Yes I did. Thanks for pointing that out.

  • Cindy to Bill:

    “Chill, Bill!”

  • @MoonwalkMafia I agree with you 100%. Spot On.

  • @MoonwalkMafia I agree with you and HEM, in general, that it makes sense to give either White or Greene significant minutes by trimming back others by a few each. Seems like there would be no harm. But what we don’t see is practice and Self mentioned this. Based on practice, those guys aren’t ready to be in a game like the one we just played. (He may not have included White in that comment…can’t remember)There is a reason he is saying that. Presumably, Selden (and Mason…hence the Tharpe/ Mason combination) are out playing those guys in practice. It is frustrating, but Self’s track record is why many people say in Self we trust. I have to go with that until he is proven otherwise over a long season.

  • @HighEliteMajor HEM. Great question, as was your questions about the rotation earlier in the year. Keep it up and thank for sharing!

  • @Hawk8086 meant to say… as was your question…

  • @HighEliteMajor, not feeling the neg at all. I figured 8 Ls min 10 max, so they are on schedule for 8-10.

    Naa and Frank are ok against ponies, but that SDSU GUARD ATE THEM ALIVE and he is not nearly the best long guard they will face.

    And Perry at 4 is the other weak link boarding and scoring on L&As. Swing Perry to 3 against the L&As and our troubles are over. Keep sitting him when the going gets tough and we won’t have enough scoters on the floor.

    Rock Chalk! Ian am poz

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