I Am in Awe of this Team Now

  • The greatest heroism is showing up and doing one’s duty, when seemingly hopelessly outnumbered. It is not going to one’s death without hope. It is searching for the path to victory that no one including one’s self can see. This is belief. Belief is the heroism of showing up hoping to find a way.

    I am in awe of this team.

    Heroism sometimes goes on under our noses without our notice.

    Sometimes for awhile.

    But then someone does something that we ourselves might not have been willing, or able, to do ourselves, and we notice!

    It ignites not just our hope, but our will to persevere and make the journey no one should have to take, but that must be taken to prevail.

    With a concussion, Malik Newman voted with his feet. He laced them up. He played 31 the hard way.

    He was 0 for 9, but the team could not have won without him. They would not have been close enough for Svi to have made the last shot. Malik Newman gave Svi and his team the greatest assist it could have been give.

    The tide of defeat was stemmed by Malik’s assist that does not even show up in the line score.

    Rock Chalk, Malik Newman. You are a Jayhawk now. More than that. You made us all remember what being Jayhawks means.

    This team is facing great adversity and is bending but not breaking. It is scrambling. It just stole a win. There are no reinforcements coming. They must do it themselves. They are in their gallant hours.

  • @jaybate-1.0 That was, indeed, a gutsy 31 minutes from a guy whose brain cells took a big hit last week. His scoring numbers have been down for a spell, but he displayed the determination to fill a vital role when his teammates, coaching staff and fans really needed the effort. I’ve a feeling that soon the bucket will widen for Malik.

  • I have full faith that soon…Malik will be the 2014-2015, number 8 ranked kid. He will get his mojo and I hate to bring up anything that’s attributed to Marsha…but play angry. We’ll see the attached kid. I want him to get to the point when he asks if his opponent is “scared”

  • bmensch1 said:

    I have full faith that soon…Malik will be the 2014-2015, number 8 ranked kid. He will get his mojo and I hate to bring up anything that’s attributed to Marsha…but play angry. We’ll see the attached kid. I want him to get to the point when he asks if his opponent is “scared”

    Not happening. The dude practiced against Mason and Devonte all last season. He just isnt that good. He isnt that fast with the ball and doesn’t have a good enough jump shot to make him faster.

  • I guess you could look at it and say we win comfortably if he had done better than 0-9 shooting instead of we won because he made an assist. It was discussed other places, so we don’t need to rehash whether he should have played, but his poor play nearly cost us that game.

  • @wissox

    He played poorly, but…

    Would a committee of Garrett, Cunliffe, Lightfoot and Young have given us a better chance to win?

    Remember, it was a last shot win with Newman. Thus any fall off at all from Newman’s play would almost surely have triggered a loss.

    Garrett goose egged the game in the minutes he played, so probably no advantage there and someone else would have had to cover his backup minutes. Who would have done as well as he did backing up? Not sure.

    Lightfoot played pretty well, but how would he have done as a wingman, and who would have replaced Lightfoot’s back up production in front court. I doubt anyone could have.

    Self seemed to have little confidence in Cunliffe, which kind of disappointed me, but the old coach was probably protecting Cunliffe from taking blame for a potential loss also. Cunliffe shouldn’t be thrown to the dogs, just because of an emergency, when developing him slowly could make him a contributor for the long haul of the second semester.

    6-4 walkon Clay Young for 31 hotly contested minutes seems the only other possibility. But Young might have gotten eaten alive on defense. But surely he would have kept the ball from sticking and made a good assist or three.

    We may see a committee of Garrett, Cunliffe and Young the rest of the way, with Malik either subbed for a minute just to take a trey, or given a med red shirt. Why?

    Hypothesis: Maybe Self offered Newman a med red to come back next year and Malik and advisors declined, because they want him to go pro end of season and don’t want to give up marketing him with PT this season. Perhaps Self said if you decline the med red, then you start and play. Up to you.

    Who knows?

    I hate this hypothetical scenario, but Newman is apparently not a minor and has to decide who he trusts and takes advice from—Self or his own advisors. Apparently the doctors signed off?

    I am, however, at a loss to understand why both his and Team doctors signed off on him playing so soon, if they did.

    Maybe we will learn more later?

  • I like your enthusiasm and optimism and I don’t want to sound negative, I see too many flaws with this team. The biggest concern is lack of depth and practically no scoring from bench. Dok is turning the corner but after him there is no one in the post, Lightfoot is not ready for prime time play.

    Another problem is Newman. He is not a Bill Self type of player, he just does not like to guard. Garrett on the other hand can play Defense but he is a liability on offense, cannot score. Unlike past teams under Self, this team is simply not very talented, not a single player is projected to go in 1st round of NBA. If KU wins Big 12 with this roster it will be Self’s best coaching job.

  • Newman played poorly on offense again. But I watched the replay yesterday morning and focused soley on him and his D was fine. As was his rebounding.

    Newman played his ass off, the guy just has the yips on the offensive end. It happens to guys. If he can see a couple of shots go down I think his confidence will come back. But he is 100% not the issue with this team. Arguing between playing him or playing Garrett is pointless. Because if we have to play Garrett, this team doesn’t have it. This team’s best chance to make it in the tourney is to continue to play Newman and hope he breaks out. Because Garrett is so limited offensively he really has no upside this year. It will take tens of thousands of shots before he is a threat. Newman on the other hand, is capable of putting the basketball in the hoop.

    A couple of other notes:

    • This team does not give Doke the ball enough. He had 26 on a night he should have gone for 35-40.
    • Why do we walk the ball up the court? Devonte is just crossing half court at 22 seconds. We are only forcing our opponents to guard for 10 or so seconds. If you give Doke 25 seconds to post up, at some point he will be open for an easy lob pass.
    • We continue to get burned for easy buckets. And yet we have not seen one possession of zone on D yet. This team is not deep enough or talented enough defensively to win the tournament playing M2M unless everyone gets hot at the right time. That is unless we try and see what a Zone does.
    • Tim Miles just showed how to beat Bill Self out of a timeout. Bill calls an end of half/game timeout and you just switch to zone.

  • @Kcmatt7

    Against Nebraska I agree Doke could have had more points. He already made up for poor offensive games from Newman, a quiet game from Vick & an inconsistent game from Svi. I thought Doke did everything to his ability at a high level, a level if he played at the rest of the season would really take some pressure off what is starting to become an inconsistent perimeter. Nebraska didn’t have anyone to stop him and from the comments looks like Self lit a fire and he responded.

    Devonte played near 40 minutes for the 4th consecutive game. We don’t have another PG on this team, we all saw the 2 minutes Devonte sat how poorly we executed offense. He should get the ball over quicker but either this was a coaching decision by Self to try and limit some possessions of Nebraska by going deeper into the clock or Devonte is laboring a bit from all the minutes. I wouldn’t be surprised if its a combination of both.

    Agree on the defense but we know its not changing. Self said as much in his recent comments. He’ll roll over in his grave before his team becomes a Zone team. I do however think he’s too stubborn here and should practice some zone to give a different look. I’ve always wanted him to employ the Nova method where we show some type of full court press and back into a physical M2M or some cheap zone. Just think what 5-6 successful trips of this could accomplish. At least what this does is force a PG into thinking about what he’s going to do to get it up the court instead of just having his way down the court. I’m continually stunned that more schools do not use some kind of dummy press with the shorter clock. If you take away 4,5-8 seconds from an offense’s normal routine you have a great chance of disrupting flow and controlling pace!

    Self admitted the mistake with that timeout. That almost cost us the game late as KU was absolutely clueless on what to do in that zone. Imagine if Nebraska kept to it on that last possession instead of going man and giving up the 3. Hard to imagine we would have scored with how poorly we attacked and executed against the zone. I haven’t watched much of Nebraska before that game but I wonder if they threw that zone wrinkle into their arsenal because of KU’s struggles against Cuse/Washington zone’s.

    Team is in a funk, not an easily fixed one. Self has his work cut out for him.

  • I’m surprised at the lack of shooting from Marcus. He really came out strong and his defense and rebounding are still a plus but Self either has to convince him to pass up that shot or get him to drive it. He had a few open lanes on the open 3’s he badly missed. I think we need to do a better job of putting Marcus in position to score from places outside of the 3 point line. I’m sure scouting reports are already showing you can lay off him. We could certainly do a better job to get him the ball on the baseline or at the FT line, something that could make it easier for him. If his shot is going to be a struggle this season we are just setting him up for failure the way we are utilizing him.

  • @BeddieKU23 I just think we don’t want him shooting the ball period. Not this year at least.

    It is a good point about DG. But then let’s just have someone else bring the ball up and he can wait for them at half court lol. If someone presses he can come get it.

  • Kcmatt7 said:

    @BeddieKU23 I just think we don’t want him shooting the ball period. Not this year at least.

    It is a good point about DG. But then let’s just have someone else bring the ball up and he can wait for them at half court lol. If someone presses he can come get it.

    He’s a better shooter then he’s shown. Has to be a mental thing for him right now. I do however think until he can work on his shot diligently that he should pass up the shot. I know that’s kind of counter-intuitive to the mindset and style of play Self is letting these kids play with but 4-19 with some of the attempts just plain awful (like hitting the side of the backboard at Nebraska) make it difficult to watch him chuck them up. He’s not forcing anything either which makes it worse. I think Marcus could be the one guard that instead of just taking a wide open 3 could take the ball to the hoop and collapse the D for a pass or a potential layup/foul. We need anyone to have a mindset on driving and drawing fouls/getting to the line because right now I’ve never seen anything like it in all the years of watching KU basketball. We simply don’t care about forcing defenses to foul us.

    I honestly think the solution with Marcus is putting him in the post and letting him operate closer to the basket. He’s shown he’s a very capable rebounder, much more active defensively then Lightfoot so I think that could end up helping us get easier baskets for Doke. Lightfoot has 1 assist on the season and has very limited offensive awareness right now. I know Mitch is playing out of position but its really tough to watch him play defense and not rebound when Doke is sitting. Marcus is not capable of being a consistent shooter in this offense right now and scouting against him in the lineup will make teams sag off him. If you put him in a ball screen role and post him up the defense cannot do that and I think in order to get some confidence in his shot it might be best to get him some close range shots. Just some thoughts. Unless we magically get some big’s eligible Self needs to get a little more creative then he is currently

  • @BeddieKU23 I actually like the idea of putting him in the high post and letting him catch the ball on at the free throw line. I think that he could hit that shot and gain some confidence. Or, drive the ball and get fouled or dish to Doke. Definitely like where your head is on this.

    No matter what though, Bill has to find a way to make defenses guard him. He may also need to bring in an outside consultant to help the guards with driving and finishing in the lane. It truly is embarrassing how bad we are at driving the ball.

  • Kcmatt7 said:

    A couple of other notes:

    • This team does not give Doke the ball enough. He had 26 on a night he should have gone for 35-40.
    • We continue to get burned for easy buckets. And yet we have not seen one possession of zone on D yet. This team is not deep enough or talented enough defensively to win the tournament playing M2M unless everyone gets hot at the right time. That is unless we try and see what a Zone does.

    Doke needs to work on establishing his post position before the ball is on his side. He is pretty bad at it and only looks to get the ball when its on his side.

    Agree our D is soft soft soft and allows way too much penetration.

  • The character of the team is taking shape. It won’t be Newman being the focal point. Shifting our focus from he potentially being a star, or all conference, or something like that – this season – is all that is required for peace of mind. He’s a more than competent player that could strike for 20 some nights. But right now, he’s a peg or two behind our other four starters. His ball handling is something that shouldn’t be overlooked. He’s our second best ball handler, thus is pretty indispensable right now (assuming DG can’t go 40). I’m just not seeing skills that indicate a significant leap to a different level of player right now. If he would be displaced as a starter, he’d be the first guard off the bench for sure.

    Our issues, really, aren’t Newman or guard related at all. They’re post related. Until that continuing drama/saga is solved, we’re exactly what we’ve seen. If we can add a real post player, that will help defensively, as well. But the x factor is what we’ve seen before. We are staged for another round of Self magic. Who doubts the guy will find a way to get this team playing better? This may be a big test for Self magic come conference play.

  • @BeddieKU23 @Kcmatt7 Remember, with Garrett, he’s just a freshman, and not the “stud”, highly ranked guy. Shooting is much about comfort. @BeddieKU23’s reference to a “mental thing” is a real consideration. He just needs to settle in. Needs to develop confidence. I do like the idea of setting him up more to operate near the basket. He’s seems pretty skilled there, and seems particularly quick on the second jump. Finds a way to get the ball, tip the ball, recover. Personally, I’d start him over Newman because of the defense. I really like how Self has handled his misses – again, calm and cool. Probably only getting on him if it is really bad look. That will pay off. Garrett looks like Releford to me a little bit, as far as his attributes. Garrett is a better rebounder of course, and I think Garrett does have more upside. I really like Garrett moving forward.

    Now, do we want him shooting a critical three? Probably not. But he does need to shoot. On good looks. That will allow him to progress and develop. You never know when, late in a game perhaps on the road in Morgantown, a few guys have fouled out, and the ball finds Garrett late. We want him to drill it.

  • @BigBad Yes and no. Our offense doesn’t really match him. First, the ball moves so quickly that getting the right angle at the right time is difficult.

    Second, sometimes we shoot the ball so quickly that he barely has enough time to get down the floor.

    Third, it appears our guards forget that he exists for stretches of the game and Bill has to remind them to get him the ball. If you are a big man and working hard over and over and then you never get the ball, it is hard to keep putting in the work.

    Ultimately, the guy is shooting at an incredible rate. Even if with added usage he was only shooting 60%, that would still be amazingly efficient.

    He needs the ball more.

  • @HighEliteMajor I definitely like Garrett in the future. But I still think he has no business being out there this year at all.

    I thought even Cunliffe looked much better than Garrett last night and would even play him over Garrett.

    The thing is, I don’t trust Garrett. Even when he gets a steal, we rarely convert on the other end. Because either he is the one leading the break, or we have to pull it back because he doesn’t feel comfortable attacking the basket in the open court. His defense is completely worthless because he offense is so bad. Sure we need to put him in a position to be a threat. But if he doesn’t fit in the offense, he doesn’t fit.

    Cunliffe can score in transition, he is long and can play D, and he can actually shoot a 3. Of course much of that is based on last night. But in extended minutes, Cunliffe played a better game than Garrett. And, more importantly, he fits what this team is trying to do. Just don’t feel that same way about MG.

  • Marcus Garrett’s last 6 games he has 6 points, 5 assists, 4 turnovers, 7 steals, 0 Blocks, 23 rebounds, is 0 for 7 from 3 point range, has not shot a free throw, and is shooting 21% from the field.

    He is not playing anywhere near the same as he did the first 5 games. The Marcus Garret from the first 5 games was a completely different player than the one we are seeing now. I don’t know if it is confidence or competition, but last night Cunliffe scored more points and hit more 3s (one) than Garrett has in 6 games.

    I just don’t see Garrett as ready to contribute.

  • The problem with Udoka is that he still does not know how to get position on offense or defense. On offense he does not put himself in a good position to receive the pass inside but when he does he has now some shake and bake moves that make him fairly effective; his lack of position also prevents him from getting offensive rebounds effectively. On defense he is drawn away from the basket way too often and again, he is not in position to prevent the layup or block it or get the defensive rebound; he was supposed to be the big rim protector and penetration stopper and he really is not; Lightfoot has more blocks and has taken more charges than him playing considerably less minutes.

    Look at this article from Jesse Newel, particularly where he has side by side video of Lucas and Udoka and the big difference in position. Once Udoka learns ho to get position he will be unstoppable.

  • @Kcmatt7 As a coach, Self knows he needs to show faith in your players. The guy is a freshman, who, on another KU team, may not be playing. But one thing is for sure, we may be forced to rely upon him in March. Further, we’ve seen many positives from him.

    When you say he is not ready to contribute – I think you are completely ignoring the defensive end. That the biggest thing you are not recognizing.

    Who is a better defender than Garrett (other than DG)? And who is a better rebounder on this team? He is the second best rebounder of the 7 regulars, and he has 2.5 more rebounds per 40 minutes played than any other guard. Doke’s the only one with more rebounds per 40, and he’s 6’10" 280 pounds and is near the basket on nearly every shot. The gap between Doke and Garrett is less than the gap between Garrett and the other guards.

    When you look at the Box Score +/-, Garrett is third on the team. Interesting at least.

    It would be really unwise to write him off as not ready to contribute. Has his performance tailed off? No doubt. But the same way you don’t get giddy after 5 games, you don’t declare him not ready to contribute after a similar time frame.

    All of that said, if Cunliffe proves to be a better player when you “net” everything out, then he should play over Garrett. We’ll see how Self handles it.

  • jaybate 1.0 said:

    The greatest heroism is showing up and doing one’s duty, when seemingly hopelessly outnumbered. It is not going to one’s death without hope. It is searching for the path to victory that no one including one’s self can see. This is belief. Belief is the heroism of showing up hoping to find a way.

    I am in awe of this team.

    hmm…we lost 2 games in a row and then beat Omaha (which is ranked in the 200s last i checked). Guess it doesn’t take much to impress the fans here. Don’t recall our standards being his low…

  • @elpoyo

    You post here…our standards are obviously non existent. 😃

  • @Kcmatt7

    Damn good post!

    I’m glad to see someone else focus on pace.

    The main positive of a 4-guard offense is to better control pace, especially towards speeding up the game while maintaining composure.

    We have some strange things going on. After our second loss, Self said he was going to change our strategy so we go towards valuing defense. Nothing wrong with that. However… if it is about installing another push for BAD BALL, grind’em games… then that means slowing down the ball and TAKING AWAY our one big advantage of a 4-guard offense.

    Even though we have seen our team shift out of an open court, fast paced game to essentially our old offensive, half-court emphasis, I’m not sure we are going to stay like this.

    I’m hopeful we are just getting our guys on the same page. Dessert will come after we eat our beans. At least, that is what I am hoping.

    In reality, maybe, just maybe, Self knows more about coaching than all of us. Maybe, by flipping over the cart, going back to BAD BALL, he not only refocuses our guys on defense, but he resets the offense. And though the reset involves slowing down, maybe it also focuses on doing a better job of taking care of the basketball and then letting the pace come back organically to a natural effective speed.

    I’m just FULL of wishful thinking! lol

  • @elpoyo Welcome back. I knew this would be a good time for you to join in. Bout’ time to get rid of Self.

  • Good scorers go through periods where they miss shots. Good players always play hard.

    That’s a big deal.

    Newman has been playing hard. His shot has been off for reasons I can’t quite diagnose, but he’s been working in the other aspects of the game.

    He’s grabbing 4.5 rebounds per game. For his struggles, his shooting percentages are still holding steady. He hasn’t gotten to the rim like I expected, but he’s been very solid. Remember, at MSU, he averaged less than 3 rebounds and just 2.2 assists per game. He’s exceeding both those figures at KU, all while shooting a higher percentage.

    I think part of his struggle is that he hasn’t yet found the best driving lanes. Once he does that, look out. Remember those 30 point explosions from the EuroTrip? That’s coming, people. Be warned, Big XII - Malik Newman is coming. He just hasn’t done it yet, but some unsuspecting team is going to experience Newman slashing them to shreds. He already has more blocks and more steals than he did at MSU.

    Newman is a player trying to stay within the team, but he will explode at some point.

  • @HighEliteMajor I’m not overlooking it. I said before, that when you have 4 players that give up points, having a 5th guy who doesn’t is useless. Right now we play a style of basketball that is basically attempting to outscore the opponent instead of stopping them from scoring.

    You just have a love for Garrett that makes you blind. His stats vs. P5 competition are absolutely atrocious. As has been the eye test. The double whammy.

    He looks like an absolute stud in the future. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not sure he won’t leave Lawrence one of the All-time best defenders or one of the top 5 in steals. But he is such a liability on offense right now. Against teams with real talent, he turns the ball over more than he assists, he rebounds at a pedestrian rate, and he shoots as well as a blind archer.

    He is the perfect guy to have off the bench to give the team some life or send a message. He will come in and hustle and do little things and not screw things up. But he isn’t going to win us games.

    I hope you’re right and I’m wrong. But nothing from Garrett has shown me that will change this season.

  • @justanotherfan His shot is off because his shot has been flat.

    Noticed last game his 3pt shot was flat. He had really nice arch on his mid range jumpers he was hitting. But he kept going off the front iron with a flat shot last game.

  • JayHawkFanToo said:


    You post here…our standards are obviously non existent. 😃


  • @drgnslayr and @Kcmatt7

    The team would clearly be better at a faster pace, but losses of Preston, and all the other guys that didn’t join, or rejoin the team, make playing any faster unfeasible IMHO.

    With the starting 5 playing 35-40 minutes against any decent competition, and Self trying to hedge the wear and tear of a long season, it means Self is having the team rest on the floor the way he did during the 2012 season with 6-7 guys. Self is trying to shorten games with Devonte walking it as much as possible until the last 10. Alas, the habit sometimes carries over into the last ten making them less dynamic than they should be. Self is also apparently having them walk it to try to keep Udoka on the floor as much as possible. The object is to let Udoka cruise up floor rather than run, and then set up and take a few breaths while the ball gets passed, or weaved without him a considerable length of time. We will not likely see pace pick up much until both the existing bench gets to where it can play about double the minutes its playing now, and Preston and DeSousa show up.

    Regarding Preston and De Sousa, a friend of mine in Lawrence suggests there is finally some real optimism being rumored in Lawrence about Preston and De Sousa playing shortly. No factual back up for that. Just what I heard from someone else that says that’s what he heard.

  • @jaybate-1.0 Bill Said something after the game. Said he hopes this was the last game they had to play small.

  • @jaybate-1.0

    “Self is trying to shorten games with Devonte walking it as much as possible until the last 10”


    Evidently, DeSousa passed his ACT or we wouldn’t be waiting for the next step to be completed. Self did everything but say he would become eligible.

    Billy… I think will become eligible, too, but faces a short restriction from game action, and most of what he has already done will count. So he should be eligible probably right after Texas or the game after that. They will need to watch that kid the entire time he is in Lawrence. He’s been in trouble TWICE now, without even playing a game. He is a good kid, but just needs constant guidance.

  • @Kcmatt7

    All fingers and toes I have are crossed and I am saying this prayer each night:

    “Now I lay me down to sleep

    Praying for our bigs to keep

    Themselves in silks of red and blue

    Or white that somewhere, someplace have KU!!!

  • @jaybate-1.0 More so for Billy… De Sousa will be a two month long project. If we get De Sousa and no Billy, KU could end up the most dangerous 4 seed the tournament has seen in a long time.

  • @Kcmatt7

    Preston and Cunliffe have been with the programs for a while now and should blend in quickly; Silvio will definitely take longer.

    The upside of this is that KU will continue to get better with the additions and hopefully fly under the radar and peak around Tournament time.

  • Seamless transitions to D1 starter DO NOT HAPPEN for even the best first year bigs.

    More broadly, NOTHING good happens quickly in basketball, or life. It only happens suddenly, after a ton of hard work and preparation and work at fitting in.

    De Sousa has put in zero hard work and preparation under Self. He has not tried to play with teammates and learn their tendencies, much less the plays. ZERO. ZIP. NADA.

    Preston put in a preseason conditioning program, then a boot camp, and played ball with the team daily and he was ready to be—drumroll please—an unimpressive sub against weak competition for 15 mpg…before vehicular issues with, um, law enforcement.

    Let’s keep this in perspective, shall we?

    The greatest big man prospect since JABBAR—Joel Embiid—took a quarter to a half a season to hit his stride even given a very limited job description.

    Josh Jackson played, but took a third of a season to really get in the flow.

    KU will be lucky to get a solid 20 mpg from Preston backing up 5 and 4 spots by February. He is a scorer who has been protected from physical play his whole life and has never been forearm smashed by a blue meanie in Morgantown.

    De Sousa will be a 10 mpg type for two months, unless injury forces him into a baptism of 🔥. I will say De Sousa looks strong and solid, so Self might expose him to smash mouth a little sooner.

    Frankly, Sosinski might see more time than either of them, when the going gets tough in places like Morgantown.

    Board rats gotta remember: this is a very violent game within 15 feet of iron and very fast in transition for newbie big men.

  • @jaybate-1.0

    Are you talking specifically about KU freshman bigs or freshman bigs accross the country?

  • For the first few weeks Self will be looking at him for help on rebounding, defense, setting screens, and an additional capable Big to give room to Dok. It will allow Dok to play more aggressively without worrying too much about fouling.

    Knowing that team only has 7 players is taking a physical and mental toll on players and I believe having him on the bench will provide some emotional relief.

  • @BeddieKU23

    All the OAD bigs I can recall had rough stretches of transition early on to D1 Team play.

    The scorers could score, but they had trouble fitting with the Team and vice versa.

    A few had so much MUA that the team won despite the rough early transition.

    But I don’t recall any that just stepped in and fitted seamlessly with their teams.

    Persons forget how much UK and Duke in their long stack years struggled early with young OADs adapting. They won because of huge MUA, but played very fitfully early on.

    Do you recall thing differently?

  • @drgnslayr

    I just saw an X FILES promo for episodes in January.

    I want to believe!

    Maybe if Self hired Mulder and Scully as Belief and Skepticism Conditioning coaches?

    Also, get ready for a rumored psyops wave of ACTUAL fake ambiguous news announcements about military discovery of alien life. NYT already reputedly ran one a day or two ago. It appears the new XFILES installments last year and this have been slotted for predictive programming reinforcement!!!

    Too much woke.

    The bots and shills aren’t turning the tide.

    It’s 1947 and NatSecAct and Roswell 2.0.

    Mix with something traumatic to NorKor, or Iran.

    Shake well.

    Poor and garnish with paranoia.

    Grab popcorn.

    Watch fake evidence.


  • @drgnslayr Devonte walking it up - some announcer said it best the other day - “They’re playing NOT to lose”.

    Same thing as a “PREVENT” Defense in football.

    They prevent you from winning.

    Play the damn game the same way you did when you were building the 30 point lead.

  • @nuleafjhawk

    They want to play a 10 minute game.

    You need a full roster to play 40.

    KU reaches the Finals playing 10 minute games in 2012.

    Maybe he should red shirt everyone but the starters?

    That might get them the ring!!!

    Less is more!

    Just kidding.

  • Having no scouting report, if we get Preston and Silvio by Big 12 play, Self can make lives of opposing coaches quite difficult by throwing in different line ups, mixing and matching them with Dok. It will be fun to see how this all shakes out.

  • @nuleafjhawk

    I think we are using this “lack of depth” topic as a crutch.

    I seem to remember several National Champions that only ran 7 players, including one UCONN team that would have LOVED to have our single Doke in their post as their post option.

  • @drgnslayr I agree! In fact, I’ve often thought “lack of depth” is a big advantage. You don’t have to worry about getting players minutes and interrupting the flow of the game. I also don’t buy the idea of 18-20 year old kids getting tired during the two hours it takes to play a basketball game.

  • @drgnslayr & @nuleafjhawk

    A crutch? yes.

    But that is what you use, when your leg is broken, or a knee is blown.

    The crutch will be set aside when/if the bench lengthens, and in March, regardless, when we are not facing two months of 2 in 3 sets.

  • @jaybate-1.0

    Well I would look to this years freshman OAD bigs, lots of guys having zero issue transitioning.

    Bagley & Carter at Duke are playing great. Carter was a little slow to begin with but had 27 in their win last night. Bagley is 2nd in freshman scoring behind Trae Young and has shown widely why he will be a Top 5 pick in the upcoming draft.

    Then we have Ayton at Arizona, arguably their best player, has been dominant and a Top 5 pick next June.

    McCoy at UNLV averaging close to 20 and 10 and backing up his ranking with no issue.

    Bamba at Texas has been exactly what he was advertised as. An elite defensive presence with a raw offensive game that has plenty of long range potential.

    Jaren Jackson has been a big part of Michigan St’s Top 5 team so far showing the offensive versatility and defensive abilities that he was known for coming out of school.

    PJ Washington & Richards at Kentucky have been solid so far. Both looked more comfortable when I last saw them last weekend against Virginia Tech.

    Other then Preston & Vanderbilt who have yet to play a minute this OAD batch has been pretty darn good so far.

    Last years class was a mixed bag, some returned due to injury/ineligibility/not ready. Still at least 5 bigs in the top 25 rankings went in the first round last year and had good seasons. 2015 class has a ton of OAD’s who had good freshman years. There will always be some that just don’t progress quick enough. Unfortunately the common theme is that freshman OAD type bigs at KU fall flat on their face. Alexander, Bragg, Diallo all came and went and threw what we thought were promising seasons with them out the door. Preston hasn’t played a game yet, seems to be fitting right in line.

  • We’ll have a ton of paper talent next year. Depends on what leaves this years squad but we certainly look to have depth at every position. Perimeter shooting would be the biggest concern regarding next years squad currently. Hence why Self is still out there for a elite wing

  • @jaybate-1.0 Yes, but once March comes, won’t every KU player have bruises, strains, or some malady? Quilted knee wraps? All putting KU at a disadvantage against seemingly every possible opponent? Jabbing you a bit.

  • @nuleafjhawk

    I have a hard time always believing the exhaustion excuse, too, especially since these kids recover so quickly.

    But there are many factors that must go into this. It isn’t just all the court time they play. Their schedules are stuffed, between academics, practices, games and, of course, travel. Those road games are a bear!

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