KU's March Depends on Frank Staying Hot or...

  • …Someone else shooting 51% from treyville on 5-7 3ptas per game.

    Assuming no seeding and whistle asymmetry.

    KU also needs for Frank’s leg he was dragging to get better. I fear Frank is entering his slump same as Tyshawn did down the stretch with a nagging injury triggering it.

    But like Donald Trump, this team has defied the odds many times.

    Here is to hoping for another month of brilliance from Frank!!!

  • Or…

    An unheralded guy steps up. I think this happens often in March. A guy that the other team does not aggressively scout for has a huge day. Sadly I can think of McNamara against us in the final in 2003, Spike Albrecht in the final in 2013 (losing effort) and Grayson Allen in the 2015 final. Those are of course just examples in single games but I think that is all it will take. I don’t see Frank having multiple off nights on our way to a National Championship. I think he will play well in 5 of 6.

    My money is on Svi pulling his head out of his ass and hitting 5 or 6 3’s in one game when we desperately need him. Rock Chalk.

  • @jaybate-1.0 Frank doesn’t need to shoot 3’s to get his. At this point, he has been so deadly from 3 teams will guard him too aggressively from 3 and he can get to the lane and the line often enough to put up 20.

    It is LL getting in foul problems that could cause us problems. And that is where we will need someone to step up. Aaaand that is where I think Coleby steps in as our savior one game in March. He will have an 8 point 8 rebound 3 block game that saves us.

  • @Kcmatt7 I hope you are right, or even Bragg pulls his head out!

  • @Crimsonorblue22

    Bragg? I don’t know. I believe the only chance he has for recovery this season is if we all agree that he has no chance; that is usually when guys come around; when Self can walk up to them and say, “You know, no one believes in you any more, but I do.” Then they go out and do something incredible. Gotta put Bragg behind the 🎱

  • @jaybate-1.0 I believe he is doing that, w/Svi and Bragg.

  • For years I have seen board rats state that if you just give these high recruits playing time they will be ready by March. Well, it’s time for Braggto prove that; he has had plenty opportunity to be ready. He needs to break out now.

  • @Blown


  • @Crimsonorblue22 said:

    I believe he is doing that, w/Svi and Bragg.

    Uh, oh, that means THAT’s not working either.

    Big trouble in river city.

  • @jaybate-1.0 Self, on Svi, said he needs to quit thinking and just play. #kubball

  • @Blown

    Hypothesis: Mick will shortly experience the kind of problems Rick Pitino has.

  • @jaybate-1.0

    I doubt Frank stays hot every game in March. And he shouldn’t have to.

    In the least, when he is having a down night his other two amigos should be stepping up to have his back.

    But we are always going to need support in the post. Landen isn’t going to come through every night either. We now know that Carlton and Dwight are capable of having big nights. Let’s hope they both come through when needed in March.

    I’m also hopeful Mitch steps up for a few valuable moments.

  • @drgnslayr

    If Frank finally has his 9 game shooting slump that brings his gaudy 51% trifectation down to the realistic for him low 40s, this team is going to fight and scramble with one hand tied behind its back, same as the 2012 team did when Tyshawn came down out of the stratosphere from treyville.

    And one of those nine games, KU is ulnerable to not being able to compensate; that is the danger.

    So IMHO we need for Frank to defy the law of averages and stay on a tear.

  • @jaybate-1.0 Ok. Now you’ve got me worried about the law of averages. Thanks a lot!

  • @jaybate-1.0

    You have it wrong stating that Mason shooting 50% from the 3 is an anomaly and 40% is his average. His average over 30 games and 134 3 point attempts IS 50%, this is a large, season long sample and not an anomaly. The law of averages or return to the mean indicates that he is more likely to shoot 50% from the 3 than 40%…which would be the anomaly.

  • @JayHawkFanToo not if the sample size was his entire career. What is his 4 year average?

  • @Blown

    42.5% (170-400) currently for his career.

    If you only include the 3 years he’s started- 44% (152-345)

    In conference play- 42.9% for his career.

  • @Hawk8086 nah, players can improve their shot.

  • @jaybate-1.0

    You know how this goes. It only takes one bad night to go home early. That is part of the intrigue of March Madness. Rarely does the best team of that year win… it is the best team for 6 games.

    “No tomorrow!”

    I like our chances this year. “Chance” is the right word.

  • @JayHawkFanToo


    And really, there is no reason why Frank can’t maintain a high % from trey to finish off this year.

    Frank learned a lot over the last 12 months. His discipline from trey is unreal. He doesn’t force it. He just waits until he is wide open.

    And then there is other times… when the shot clock is under 5, and Frank has the ball and is well-guarded at the top of the key. He makes his move with a few seconds left, so the defender has to play for the drive. Then Frank steps back and has a wide open trey.

    Other guards need to pay attention to Frank. Frank is 5’11" and very rarely gets his shot blocked from trey and usually finds the bottom of the net.

    Simple rules:

    1. Be patient for a wide open trey

    2. When forced to shoot, decoy off the drive and step back for a wide open trey.

    Frank keeps it simple, but defending him is not simple! If the defender doesn’t bite the decoy drive, chances are he fouls Frank for 3 FTs or Frank has an “and 1.”

  • @Blown said:

    @JayHawkFanToo not if the sample size was his entire career. What is his 4 year average?

    What he did in previous years would only help establish a progress/improvement trend but would not be representative of how good he is now. He has obviously improved quite a bit even from las year and he has 30 games this season to evaluate what his 3 point true average is and now it sits right at 50%.

  • @JayHawkFanToo I agree you can take that perspective, also, if that is the argument you want to make.

    I’m looking at the ‘anomaly’ from a bigger picture. Yes, he might be considered a 50% 3 pt shooter THIS YEAR. But is he a 50% three point shooter, overall? No, I don’t think he is.

    Michael Jordan shot 43% from three in the 95/96 season, but he was not a 43% 3 pt shooter, either. Over his career, the larger sample size, he was about a 33% 3pt shooter, so the 95/96 season was an aberration.

  • @Blown

    I understand what you are saying but you have the wrong analogy. College is the time where players are still learning and improving but not quite at their peak, particularly those that stay only one year. In the NBA players are pretty much at a steady state after a couple of years.

    Mason has become not only a better shooter but a more efficient one and you will notice he is now more selective on the shots he takes. Also the role he plays has an effect on the shooting; his current shooting is a reflection of the overall improvement and his role in this year’s team. His shooting has remained steady through the 30 games played this season.

    You might have a better argument with Jackson who started the season shooting so poorly from the 3 that we cringed whe he took a long shot, but in the last 11 games, he has shot over 50% from the 3.

    I short, I would expect Mason to continue shooting 50% from the 3 going forward since this is what he has been doing all year. Can he have a subpar game or two when he shoots a lower percentage? Absolutely, but regression to the mean would indicate that the longer KU plays the more likely his percentage will be around 50%.

  • @JayHawkFanToo Fair enough, but Steph Curry shot 5% higher his soph year than he did his junior year, if you prefer a college analogy.

    I hope he shoots 50% over the next 10 games. Time will tell.

  • @jaybate-1.0 Your 3 numbers are a little off, he averages 2.2 makes off of 4.6 shots per game. He has only shot 134 on the year. I think his knee or leg looks good personally, just think he will need help. Some other guys have to play well other than him for us to make the FF IMO.

  • @Blown

    Again, read my post. Some of it has to do on what your role is on the team. If you are the “go to” player that has to take the shot regardless, chances are a fair number of the shots will not be ideal. If you have a good team that can move the ball well and get you open and you are not the primary, but one of several scoring options, chances are that your shot selection will be better and hence a better percentage. The second case is where Mason fits, several other players that can score from outside and hence a better shot selection’ Devonte and Svi have taken more 3 point attempts than Mason.

    Curry and Thompson combined to shoot 3-22 from 3 last night and the Warriors lost to barely over .500 Chicago. I don’t believe they will continue to shoot 14% and they will revert to the meant in the 40s soon enough. Unfortunately and unlike the NBA, in the NCAA you lose one game and you are out. Mason has had off-shooting games before and the team picked up the slack and won anyway.

  • @drgnslayr “Doubt Frank stays hot”…I like the word of caution, as we definitely need the whole team to show up, not just Frank.

    Personally, I think Frank stays hot. Why? The only “off” game he had was the one where we saw him coughing into his jersey (flu game). Every other game, he gets his 20. All manner of opposition (2 blue bloods, other top 10 teams, conf foes with full scout on him) have tried to stop him, but they cannot.

    So what’s the chances that some foe who’s never faced Frank can stop him? Almost NO chance.

    But they can scheme, and send 2 guys at him, but that’s exactly what we want also, since Frank avg 5 apg, and he’ll simply find his open guys. Devonte capable of same. Josh capable of same.

    I pity the competition. The only thing that will fell us is a cold shooting night. And the occasional 15+ turnover outing. Put the 2 together, and thats how IowaSt got us in AFH. And combined with poor 3pt defense.

    We’ll get everybody’s best shot. A GREAT test will be this game at OkieSt.

  • @ralster I think Frank will always impact the game. But no doubt he will have an off shooting night if we get to the NC. I doubt he has 6 straight good shooting games. That being said one of many guys will have the chance to step up. Hopefully he imposes his will when he needs to. Not to bring up bad times but Sherron never really got going vs UNI. Which blew my mind and flat out sucks that’s the last memory of him in a KU uni, the same could be said of EJ’s epic collapse vs Michigan. Loved those guys, still do. It was just hard to watch them lose to teams that we all know we were better than.

  • @kjayhawks Good points. I went and watched the WVU and Baylor games again from last week, and Mason’s statline in one of those: 3-13 FG late game, but somehow ended with 20-23pts, as he hit a ton of FTs.

    My qualified bet is Frank ‘gets his’ (20pts), but the key is what does the rest of his team do? He cant win anything by himself. Quick fouls on Landon and Josh could make for a dicey game.

  • But win or lose, one thing I can guarantee is that Frank will give 100%, as will Devonte, Lucas, and Josh. Vick and Svi are fighters also, as Coleby appears to be as well.

    A whole team of fighters. Never-say-die guys, who also are offensively gifted. Never know when that switch will ignite, even on an off-night, or after a slow start…

  • @ralster we need everyone, the chances of getting in foul trouble are high if you play the 6 games. I think some of it is the law of averages. Think about how we struggled with Davidson in 08 and how Nova struggled and barely escaped us last year. To get there it takes a team effort. Hopefully these guys remember how close they were to being a NC team last year. I think our guys play hard most of the time but sometimes it’s like we must be down 10 or so before we really start to fight. Which we can’t afford to do in NCAAs, teams are too good.

  • @ralster

    Nice conversation.

    Yeah… the real top talent players find ways to get theirs, whether it be from the field of FT line. And when absolutely nothing is falling for them, they find other ways to help their team win.

    Basketball is a complex game and there are so many areas to positively impact the game. Top players know that and their main goal is to help their team win, not build their stat sheet. This has been a problem with Carmelo Anthony’s career. Many have questioned his motives and he has been on some pretty bad teams. He finally compensated for his reputation during the Olympics, by making sure he was “the man” that helped his teammates win.

    I really like our team and I like our chances. But I have to admit, a big part of my optimism relates to having Frank on this team. I believe in his heart, his desire, and his ability to execute!

  • Foul trouble early kills us! Mason and ll at wv, jj multiple times and Dg nova game last year.

  • Knowing how competetive Frank is, that Nova game, the WSU game, the Stanford game, all probably stoked his fire…he on a mission now.

  • @ralster I always thought that Kentucky killing has inspired frank more than anything.

  • @JayHawkFanToo It reminds me of mlb, where you get a hitter utilizing a new skill, or a pitcher learning a new pitch that changes their results. Now, practically every sabermatician is going to project Moose Moustakas to hit 22 hrs this upcoming year. The past shows that would be a reasonable assessment. However, it won’t show the major adjustment he made last year ( in a small sample size ) that portends a major Moose breakout. Moose is a late bloomer- watch for him to pass the 30 HR range easily this year.

    I really think Frank is a late bloomer as well. Last year he was a good player, but he wasn’t a game finisher. Frank this year is physically and mentally stronger than last year, and might be the most clutch player in America this year. He is due for more positive regression, simply due to his improved skills, and his increased confidence. No doubt he will show up better in the NCAA tournament than years past. I absolutely think he can hit over 50% from 3 in the tournament, even when teams try to key on him. You guard him close, and he’s around you in a second- you lay off him, he buries you from deep. Most importantly, I think Frank has conquered the mental aspect of the game. In times past, he would shrink a bit in the spotlight, try to do too much, miss free throws…etc. This new Frank is the best player in basketball, and the NCAA tournament will prove it.

  • @kjayhawks said:

    @jaybate-1.0 Your 3 numbers are a little off, he averages 2.2 makes off of 4.6 shots per game. He has only shot 134 on the year. I think his knee or leg looks good personally, just think he will need help. Some other guys have to play well other than him for us to make the FF IMO

    Thx for the stat. I was remarkably close guessing at his range of 3ptas, wasn’t I? I was at low of 5 and high of 7. Since his average was 4.6 calculated I am tickled pink with my guesstimate.

  • @drgnslayr said:

    Chance” is the right word.

    So hope your right about our chances, but apppearances of the last few years make me wonder if there might also be some “chance” of legal “selection” or “engineering” being involved.

    Could it be our turn to be engineered toward, too?

    Might they be starting to get a little self conscious about the run of EST winnahs?

    Might they be preparing for one loss leader before getting back to another run of EST teams?

    Just speculation’ and hypothesizin’.

    Not suggesting an illegal conspiracy.

    All legal entertainment value hypothesis.

  • @JayHawkFanToo

    “…this is a large, season long sample and not an anomaly.”

    Tell this to Tyshawn Taylor who fell precipitously from dizzying heights for him his last season.

    Frank shot 38% from Trey last season, if I recall correctly.

    Frank could not make another shot this season and probably only fall to 38%, which would be shooting back to average.

    What makes this all dicey are his injuries. He’s reputedly a great shot. He was “nicked up” last year and shot 38%. This year he has seemed healthier until recently when the one leg started being dragged around. Will high mpg and leg problems turn him into last year’s Frank, or was last year’s Frank the real Frank?

    Further, Frank hasn’t had the one big slump each season most outside shooters have–the 4-6 game stretch where they just can’t find the range. It can come any time of year. But it almost always does come.

    Frank is ripe for a big slump. He hasn’t had his yet and he has played big minutes and is dragging a leg in early March.

    It only takes a couple off shooting games this late for opposing coaches to gamble he is in one and sag off early and choke off our other hot shooters; that’s how losses often happen in March.

    Impact players enter slumps at the point of one and out.

  • @jaybate-1.0 I dont buy this whole “due for a big slump” nonsense. If you have been shooting 200 jumpers every day or every other day for months, the muscle memory should be solid enough that there isnt a great chance of a “big slump”. For me as a current player, I have yet to experience one of those. Frank can swish open shots all day. Why? Because we know he has worked very hard all summer and this season to become a great three pointer shooter. The whole idea of “he may never hit another shot this season” is utterly ridiculous. Did you ever play basketball? Can shooters not improve?

  • @jaybate-1.0 You have to wait until the bracket comes out to prove your point. And prove your point you will ( forgive the Yoda sentence - I thot it sounded cool ). This group has collective amnesia every year.

  • Frank’s leg looked FINE as he drove and glided effortlessly to the rim against OkieState (in Stoolwater). Its the shot to the ribs I’m nervous about. Announcers said “got wind knocked out of him”, but he did seem fine by game’s end.

  • @ralster his speed last night in the open court was unbelievable - John Wallesque. I am a little concerned also about that shot he took to the midsection - like you said, didnt seem to bother him late in the game.

  • @jaybate-1.0

    Now, I am curious. Please tell what stats for Tayshwan “who fell precipitously from dizzying heights for him his last season.” are you talking about? I seem to recall that Tayshawn’s las season at KU was his best.

    As far as Mason, you have your statistics wrong because you are comparing apples with oranges…Senior Mason>>>Junior Mason>>>Sophomore Mason>>>Freshman Mason. You are assuming, incorrectly, that this year’s Mason is the same as last or previous year’s Mason…obviously he is not, he is much improved in all aspects of his game, including shooting, and this is why he is the leader for POY.

  • @JayHawkFanToo you talkin bout Tyrone Tanner?

  • @HawkChamp

    I ain’t selling.

    But if I were, you would be wise to buy it.

    I’ve never met a coach, or a player, that hasn’t used the word slump to describe players going through stretches where they aren’t making many baskets that they usually make.

  • @JayHawkFanToo

    I recall Quantum T was over 40 percent from trey entering the conference tournament. His final season was the first season that he had really become a serious three point threat clicking above 40% for most of the season. Then he went cold as ice starting in the conference tourney, I believe, and he spent the entire NCAA tournament mired in a 3pt slump. If I recall he wound up somewhere around 38% from trey for the season, right?

    Taaaaa daaaaa!

    Bring on the yellow bird photo with the drill. I want to photoshop the suckah!!!

    I love that photo. I always know I’m getting deep into your neural nets when you bring it out.

    I’ve been a little derelict in my duties to the board lately in not stimulating you enough, but I haven’t been myself lately. A couple of nasty bugs in a row…

    C’mon, we’re 28-3, I’m feeling better and if I have to needle you to get this board juiced I guess that’s what I have to do, right?

    Bring it on, Mr. Engineer!!!


  • @jaybate-1.0

    You are good at offering opinion as fact. How about you show some actual links and numbers to support your claim.

    Tayshawn shot 0.382 from the 3 for the season and a slightly better 0.398 during conference. Note that the year before he shot 0.380 for the year while shooting 0.409 during conference. KU and Mason have the most games of any team against top 10, top 25 and top 50 teams so he has seen some of the tougher defenses and he has done just fine.

    All players have off games where part of their game does not click. Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson, arguably two of the better 3 point shooters ever, combined for 3 of 22 from 3 a couple of days ago…does this mean they will continue shooting at the same rate? Absolutely not. Chances are they will go back to shooting their usual average.

    Mason has already had well below average shooting games but he bounced right back. There is ZERO evidence or reason to think he will go on a long slump. Yes, he might have a poor shooting gamve from the 3 but he will continue driving and scoring, dishing assists and rebounding like he always does, and again, you have provided nothing to prove otherwise.

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