Thoughts on last nights game.

  • KU escaped Fort Worth with a 86-80 win. I thought we started off right where we left Vegas icy cold and with little energy. We really shot the ball terrible outside of an 8 minute stretch in the first half, started 1 for 13 and 38% in the second half, finished at 43%. I’m not sure coming out flat was a surprise outta the holiday break being on the road, but I expected us to take control in the second half and we flat didn’t and let them hang around. We had an edge on the glass bye 7 at half time and ended up tied with 39 a piece with them and giving up 12 offensive rebounds which is too many. The defense continues to be suspect, we over purse and over help about 20 times a game leading to open dunks and layups. The lack of a rim protector and a solid post defense, yes I know LL had a good game and I’m excited about it, but we have now given up career days for I believe 4 bigs that we have faced and none of which are probably Lottery picks. I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again we look like a Roy Williams team, to win we have to out score the opponent. I really liked what I saw from Vick and Svi (besides that ridiculous pass late), they hit open shots and played well. DG struggled badly from the floor(3/14) and was beaten often on defense. Mason did what Mason does bye getting to the hoop and creating shots for everyone and FTs for himself. LL was great, man if he can play like that on a consistent basis it would be a big help inside, but TCU is small so I’m not gonna get too far ahead of myself. Bragg had a decent line of 5 points and 9 rebounds in 16 minutes, he just has to finish around the rim and catch the ball then he would have more points. Well JJ is human lol. He had a bad game hopefully it was just first B12 game jitters. The most disappointing thing from him to me was he never got after the glass or on floor after loose balls like he normally does baring one play. The slamming the ball down T cant happen, I know hes young but you have to keep your head on straight, we will need him on the floor to win this league. The best things I saw was good FT shooting for the first since Indiana and the stat that won us the game, creating turnovers, in way, seemed like they had a ton of travels unforced.

  • I mentioned it in the other thread but as of now TCU is a tournament level team and one of the higher ranked teams we have played so far (and a true road game unlike the previous two against IND and Duke).

    Edit: TCU is not DUKE/IND level, to be clear, but they are ranked considerably higher than anyone else on the schedule to date.

  • A few comments -

    1. Misconception - you don’t need a rim protector to get to the final four and be successful throughout the season. The problem is Self’s teams, outside of '08, have been too weak defensively on the perimeter to negate not having a rim protector. The rebuttal that I hear is “Yeah, but the rules changed. We can’t play defense like we used too.” My response is - bollocks. West Virginia, Villanova, Michigan State (not this year of course) and a host of other teams play solid defense and don’t give up straight line drives to the goal like what Frank and Devonte do. Need I remind everyone again that Villanova won the championship while playing only two 6’9 bigs? Look at what they have accomplished this year - won AT PURDUE who has 7’2 Isaac Haas and near footer Caleb Swannigan and just won at Creighton. Their post men, Reynolds and Paschall are not back to the basket scorers or shot block extraordinaires. So how are they winning? By first playing solid individual defense, which means not giving up blow bys and not commiting silly fouls, and solid team defense, which means that their rotation is solid also. Did Butler have a shot blocker in '10 and '11 when they went to back to back title games? No. Conclusion: It is not necessary.

    2. Career games by opposing bigs - Last night, I never got the feeling watching the game with my dad that Landen was getting destroyed down low. Why? Because he wasn’t really. One on one, I think he only got scored on a couple times. Outside of that, it was mostly off of poor rotations and getting fouled off of those poor rotations. In all actuality, our perimeter defense and rotations were the reason for his career game, same as Travis from Stanford. Our perimeter guys, mainly Frank and Devonte, continually get beat off the dribble causing our defense to collapse which creates opportunities for opposing bigs. I also wouldn’t say that TCU is small - career night man is 6’11 so he has legit size.

    3. JJ - just like early in the year, last night was something else that Josh will learn from and improve on. Not worried about him at all.

  • @BShark Ya I think they could surprise some people for sure. I see things from a coaching stand point as I did it for a number of years. I think the B12 has 3 teams that can win against anyone, any given day in KU, WVU and Baylor. I would say Texas and OU are the bottom feeders but 4th-8th could be anyone in the league. I think TCU gets in as the 6th and final B12 team at this point.

  • @HawkChamp That’s pretty much what I was getting to, A rim protector helps a ton when your guards cant keep their man outta the lane, doesn’t mean that it is a must to win a NC. Landen isn’t a great post defender, he is okay but slow and when you help time after time that hurts. The defense as whole needs a lot of work. We used to do what was called shell drill and it focuses on where you should be when the ball is reversed and who is supposed to help. I would spend hours on this the next few days if I was coaching( I’m self has a plan). Also that’s why I said JJ is human no need to worry at this point, just hope he doesn’t turn in wiggins with 3 points one game and 30 the next.

  • @kjayhawks love the shell drill, kids hate it!

  • @kjayhawks

    That’s a pretty solid assessment I think. Texas is the clear cut worst team imo.

  • @Crimsonorblue22 haha its an old drill but it works

  • Anyone else think it was strange that Mitch didn’t get in whatsoever, I realize we were never in foul trouble outside of JJ but still figured he get a minute of two.

  • @kjayhawks

    We found out which players Self really trusts (just 7 of em it turns out).

  • @kjayhawks The reason we shot FTs well was that the 2 primary culprits of our bad FT % …Doke and Josh, didn’t go to the line. The rest of the guys…should all be able to shoot it well from the line.

  • @Hawk8086 nailed it

  • Besides the start of the game which was some of the worst basketball we’ve played this year, I thought we had control of the game even though the score was relatively close throughout.

    I don’t think we played great as a team but we got some great individual efforts. Landen rebounding and getting some close-in buckets, Svi & Vick making timely outside shots and Frank being Frank Mason led us to escape with a win. Even Bragg deserves a kudos for 9 rebounds in just 16 minutes, he took some balls away from guys and showed some grit for the first time.

    This was all done without arguably our best player who pulled a complete no-show last night. Should we be concerned Josh will do this again? We should be concerned, he’s got a bit of emotional temper he needs to learn to channel. The foul call was bogus but the immediate reaction is selfish and he needs to think of his team. He cannot continue to take himself out of the game with stupid fouls. I know he’s competitive, aggressive and he’s trying but the fouls are just stupid, there’s nothing else to say. Stay on the court and you get 18-20 a night, foul people and you get what you deserve. I’m sure he’ll take this game as a good teaching moment as I’m sure Self will.

    Lots of good practice film.

    Obviously the biggest concern for this team is our defense. And most of it was due to our perimeter players not containing dribble penetration. We had some really poor rotations as well that left Big Whitey beanpole wide open all night. Whatever his career night didn’t win them the game. TCU is improved, they have depth and guys who can make plays which is something they have lacked for many years. I still think KU played its B- game and walked away with a win!

    Where’s Devonte Graham’s shooting? If it wasn’t for his other perimeter mates coming through I thought he was terrible. I might be on him a little too much but we should be seeing the best version of DG and we aren’t right now. I’m sure it will pass but what makes this team so deadly is its 1-2 punch with DG/Frank and we can’t afford too many 3-14 shooting nights.

    Now we get the 2 game home-stand and a chance to get to 3-0.

  • @Hawk8086 Very true and whats with Svi 7 for 14 guy damn near hits 3s at a higher percentage

  • @BShark Ya which worries me, we know we cant have anymore injuries or a lot of foul trouble or we go down. I’m not a betting man but Bragg and LL will be in foul trouble more than once before the season is up. That’s why I hoped mitch got some more PT hopefully he gets some against the mildcats.

  • @BeddieKU23

    Graham has been pretty bad lately.

    Agree about the defense, it’s an issue. Honestly it’s an issue for almost everybody now. Players are worried about ticky tack foul calls and the fact that KU doesn’t have a lot of eligible players exacerbates it.


    Can’t afford a single injury at this point, just can’t.

  • @BShark

    I’ve been saying ever since last spring that Devonte needed to be moved to point. The idea was to have him take ownership of this team. Frank moves to the 2, and his new role is to score. Even though it seems like their positions are basically the same, they aren’t. And psychologically the roles are quite different.

    I kind of feel like every time Frank scores it gives Devonte an excuse to coast. But when Devonte is given ownership, he performs probably better than anyone on this team does or can. Just think back to the OU game at OU last year.

    As good as Frank is this year, I think he could have even bigger scoring totals if this was his role. Watch his court behavior now. He isn’t always aggressive. He seems to be aggressive in our half court offense only when he has to. In the open court, he just goes 110%!

    I still think this is our one fatal flaw for this team. Having an effective Devonte and Frank is enough to win a National Championship. Usually it really only takes one alpha dog to get the job done.

    This is just my opinion… right or wrong…

  • @drgnslayr you are right - the 1-2 punch we were all expecting has not been there at all and yet we are still winning. I honestly don’t think Bill will change anything but you never know

  • @kjayhawks We have to play better defense, period. We never stopped TCU the whole game.

  • @HawkChamp Really agree with you on # 2 a lot. Landen played very well as his line proves plus diving on the floor for loose balls on top of everything else. The big thing I noticed was we weren’t getttin out to guard the 3 very well especially in the 1st half when they went 5-8. I tell you what TCU will take down some people in conference at home - -Jamie Dixon has them headed in the right Direction - - -ROCK CHALK ALL DAY LONG BABY

  • @BeddieKU23 Im not concerned about JJ. Coach Self will fix that right up.

  • @drgnslayr et all.

    I just have to ask. Is Devonte hurt? Or did he just have a bad game? The guy usually is one of, if not the best player on the court and he gets beat on D and shoots way below his average? At least he made his Free Throws. If he really was hurting and not just a little bit nicked, he probly woulda missed a couple.

  • @Lulufulu He was hurt. He looked gimpy before he knocked knees with the purple frog.

  • Wayne short shorts Selden was in town last night. Austin Spurs beat his team and my friend said Wayne played well.





  • Stats 2.JPG

    Stats 3.JPG

  • What we learned from the first look at the various conference teams.👍

    Texas - KSU - Texas is without question the worst team in the conference. KSU is now potentially a top half team; Tuesday game at KU will tell how good or average they are; zero point from the KSU bench has to be a concern

    Texas Tech. - ISU - Hilton proved to the be a tough place to play and ISU is desperately trying to hang on to the top half but I am not sure how it going to do considering the weak bench…9 point in 70 minutes combined by bench players will not cut it in a long season. Texas Tech. is improved but still bottom half team.

    WVU - OSU - WSU is the real deal OSU got exposed.

    Baylor - OU - Baylor is really good and withe WVU represent the top competition for KU. They had 6 players with more than 20 minutes and 3 more with double digit minutes; they have depth and they use it. OU continues its down slide and there are no signs it will get better; maybe a step above Texas.

    KU - TCU - TCU is a much improved team and when they get in the zone they can stay with anyone. KU needs to stop spotting the other team points early in the game and then playing catch up. Graham and Brag with sub-par games and Jackson had perhaps his worst game as a Jayhawk. With all of that, it still managed to win but it cannot go through the season playing only 7 players or Jackson only 13 minutes; it needs to get some distance early and use the bench some more.

    KU, WVU and Baylor are well ahead of the other teams with ISU, KSU and TCU trailing behind. With WVU and Baylor playing well, KU will really have to earn the title this year and it will not come easy. KU needs to hold serve at home, beat the teams it is supposed to beat and then steal one on the road from either Baylor or WVU.

  • @JayHawkFanToo Do you think we made TCU look better than they really are with our poor defense? Just a thought.

  • @Hawk8086 I think Coach Dixon has his guys playing well. Note to the Big 12: TCU is going to compete.

  • @Hawk8086

    TCU is a good team that will take advantage of what the competition gives it. They took advantage of KU poor defense and cold shooting and after KU took control, it never was able to put distance and they stayed in the game until the end.

  • @JayHawkFanToo let’s see how they do when we have jj on the court full time. Huge defensive difference.

  • @Crimsonorblue22

    …they forced (and frustrated) Josh into fouls - with a little help from the refs - and stayed in the game…gotta give them credit for that.

  • @JayHawkFanToo don’t believe that will happen again

  • @Crimsonorblue22

    I sure hope not. I thought Josh learned from the Duke game but apparently forgot; I am sure Coach Self will have a “talk” with him.

  • @JayHawkFanToo Josh knows

  • @BShark

    Your right defense is an issue for most teams right now with the way the game is called. I do think for the type of players we have this game showed how much they are underachieving as a unit on defense. Self is on them- “we don’t guard” to the media is his way of getting his message across to them.

  • @BeddieKU23 This was their second game without Azubuike behind them. Having to adjust to no longer having a true rim protector will take a few games to adjust to.

  • @Texas-Hawk-10

    Very True it is an adjustment still . I do want to note that Doke was only playing on average 12 minutes a game because of foul trouble, game flow etc. If he was playing 25 minutes a game his impact would be felt even more.

    I believe Jackson’s foul trouble impacted a lot of our defense in the TCU game. Jackson’s leading the team in blocks with Doke out, 2nd in steals and his versatility to guard the post was felt on rotations where a guard had to pick up a big ( it seemed Svi struggled when put in that situation). It’s certainly a key to minimize Jackson’s fouls over a course of a game.

  • @BeddieKU23

    Missing Josh for most of the game hurt the defense a lot.


    I came away from that game thinking KSU was pretty bad too, a good team blows UT out at home. We will see though.

  • @BShark

    I remember it being 10-12 point game with 3-4 minutes left, not sure what happened to make it so close? Did K-St call off the dogs? Both teams are offensively challenged and we’ve talked about this before K-St is down to what 6 D-1 players. That game was never going to be pretty they only get jazzed for one game a year anyway

  • @BeddieKU23

    Some things just evened out a bit. It was truly an awful game to watch as you said both teams struggle to score.

  • @BeddieKU23 UA’s minutes were increasing as the season went along. He was averaging 17 mpg in the 5 games before Davidson and probably would’ve ended up averaging 20 or so by the end of the regular season. KU’s defensive prowess was getting better as UA’s minutes were increasing as well.

  • @BeddieKU23 @BShark

    Exactly. KSU was up 11 with 3 minutes left and basically coasted to the end; not unlike what KU has done at times…remember KU was up 11 points over Duke with 6-7 minutes left and let Duke back in the game, human nature perhaps?

    In the old days before computers, wins and loses were mostly what counted; now, with the computerized rankings margin of victory counts a lot more, but in this generation of participation trophies, running up the score is considered bad etiquette and politically incorrect to beat up on weaker opponents. I say screw it, keep the pedal to the metal and run up the score, if they could do it to you they would any day of the week and twice on Sunday…now I am kidding of course…maybe? maybe not?

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