• Tarik Black! Tarik Black! Tarik Black!

    I can’t stress it enough. Tarik Black’s performance last night not only won the FLOOR BURN AWARD for this game, he may have won it for the entire year! That was the most-inspiring play of any Jayhawk all year!

    And it couldn’t have happened for a more-deserving player and human being!

    Tarik is the spiritual leader of this team, and he has become the spiritual leader of the Jayhawk Nation! We are all feeling his love. And we all know he is feeling it back!

    Normally, I start posting players’ stats in this piece. Forget it. We all know what Tarik did on the court. It was magnificent. But what Tarik has done in our hearts and souls must be recognized above everything else.

    Last night was more than Tarik’s break-out game… it was OUR break-out game! It was the realization that Tarik is a special man, and we have been so blessed to have him even if it is just for one year of basketball. Truth is, we will have Tarik forever! He will always be in our hearts and we will be in his.

    This is what Jayhawk basketball is all about!

    Conference Season Tally:

    Wayne Selden 7

    Andrew Wiggins 6

    Joel Embiid 6

    Tarik Black 5

    Perry Ellis 4

    Naadir Tharpe 4

    Frank Mason 2

    Brannen Greene 1

    Landen Lucas 1

    Conner Frankamp 1

    Jamari Traylor 1

    Andrew White III 1

    Justin Wesley 1

    Evan Manning 1

    Niko Roberts 1

    Christian Garrett 1

  • @drgnslayr Good call on Tarik yesterday. He didn’t have a million, but it was close enough to get my attention !

  • @nuleafjhawk

    I thought he had more than a million… since what he had we can’t measure!

  • @drgnslayr Heart!! He had heart and he showed it last night.

    He really has shown it all year in how he has let his playing time dwindle here and there and still been there for his teammates. He just showed us last night on the floor.

  • @drgnslayr his attitude has been so positive and it’s awesome to see that. I couldn’t fathom what this team would be without him. These guys have grown up a lot since they arrived on campus and as great as HCBS is, I can’t help but to think that Tarik had a lot to do with that as well. How many players do you know who would coem to a new program slated as a starter and teach the young incoming big kid to take his spot and not only do it, but do it well and with pride!

  • @HawkInMizery To add to your point what Tarik ha sadded this year will be something guys like Traylor and Lucas can use and teach in the upcoming years as well.

    He is handing down his knowledge, his passion, his love of the game to those guys and if they learn anything from him they too will hand it down to the next batch of Jayhawks.

  • @JRyman I can’t wait for Mari’s senior season. You can tell from how well they play together on the court that they really have a bond off of it. I’m sure he has been a psonge this season and same goes for Landen. Look at how gritty and tough Lucas plays when he gets his oppotunities. Even though Tarik is gone in just a few short weeks. His impact will be felt for at least the next 2-3 years with those two. Optimistically speaking we still have him for another 10 games!

  • Dang, chokes me up again! All posters, great comments about Tarik! Can’t wait to see what Tarik does after bb!

  • @drgnslayr can’t forget to acknowledge Tharpe, we were hard on him sat. He deserves some praise for a terrific game too!

  • @drgnslayr

    This is a huge copy and past from jaybate!!!

    Copy and paste. Copy and paste. Copy and paste. Copy and paste.

    What I loved most about Tarik was that he made everyone better out there, after a period of adjustment. He was a steadying, stabilizing, great bear out there. He was directing people. He was bringing basketball IQ into this team. He was getting the team to run the stuff. It was amazing to watch. Tar just kept running around setting great big man mountain screens, not in a rough way, or mean way, but in a “right way.” He just kept being where he was supposed to be in the offense. After I saw his performance, I just knew, slayr, that you were going to on cloud nine about it. Tarik’s personality impressed on this team in this game in a way that not only the starters, but the subs, bought into. He became the daddy out there that let the rest of the players run the stuff around him. How many times this season have you said: this team doesn’t really run any offense even when it tries to? The offense ran like clock work for nearly ten straight minutes in the second half. I was watching it. It ran so flawlessly I could follow each action unfolding. I know, Tech was not a great team, but the last time we played Tech they disrupted us to the point that we did NOT really “run the stuff.” Tar gave me goose bumps a number of times. He was playing the team like a big man plays base violin in a jazz quartet. He would get them moving around him. He would do a quick release and goose the tempo some. He would settle his mass onto the low block and say revolve around my gravity boys. He would signal Jam Tray, Big Daddy is moving out high so they have a little different look, and Jam Tray would catch the signal and move low and wait for the Tar to move the game to him down low through a pass to a wing and wing entry into Jam Tray. It was a thing of beauty what Tar did out there. And he did exactly what he said he was going to do. He was going to use his opportunity to make the team play like a team. Tar was on the glass some. He was in transition some. When things went wrong, he gauged his pace up the floor to be some one to coordinate with on the way. I could almost feel him through the live feed. I felt like if Self had called my number I could have gone down and been one of the planets revolving around the big sun. I know Tar is not as great of an athlete as Joel, but Tar has grown up with the game and knows intuitively how a big man can orchestrate a team. I have not see a KU big man since Cole “BE” the big man that really had the force of physique and personality to “BE” the post. And while Cole did it longer and against better teams, even Cole never did it with the cool, assured control of all the trim and throttle that Tar showed ,when everything was clicking. Darnell Jackson once or twice came close, but he was just not quite the man mountain that Tar is either. It was like watching Charlie Parker laying down the line be bop line and letting the others play around him, with him, then around him, then with him, etc.

    It was why I keep watching basketball.

    It was the beauty deep in the game that once in a great while gets brought out into the open.

    Like Mother Judith said to Tar, “Manifest your destiny.”

    And he did.

    And the team played together like the kind of team I most love to play on and watch.

    He reminded me at a times of Willis Reed and there is no higher compliment than that for any that saw Red Holzman’s perpetual motion machine he build around Willis in the Garden so many many years ago now.

    There are great bears among men. They are rare, but they are there. To have the power of the bear is a great gift. But like all gifts it can not always find the right circumstances to manifest in the fullness of its sweet power.

    I have been calling Tar a great bear, a mountain of a man, for awhile because I felt it in him.

    But I had no idea if he would ever get to show it with this team so centered on awesome athleticism.

    But out of the improbability of a starting five of Niko, Tar, Justin, Wigs, and Selden, there it immersed uncertainly at first, slowly, then more and more, and then first the starters joined the great bear, and then the subs he knows so well joined in, and it just kept building and it built through half time and it crested with the walk ons.

    Rack the tape of that game and show it to every big man that ever plays at KU forever afterwards. That is the way a big man is supposed to orchestrate a game. The game is not about him. But he is at the center of everything and at some point he can move around in the center of it all and it is not a controlling thing. It is a gravitational thing. Where he moves the gravity moves and everyone revolves around that gravity and he moves with insight part of the time and on feel part of the time and the players revolving around him sense when he his play calls for staying within the stuff and when it calls for improvising on the stuff and the team becomes truly greater than the sum of the parts.

    So help me Phog!!!

  • @Crimsonorblue22-SCuse’ me but lol…Oops, there’s many a slip twixt the cup of the lip !!

  • @globaljaybird confused???

  • @Crimsonorblue22-Not one bit.

  • @globaljaybird I am!!

  • @jaybate 1.0

    That may be your best post all year! You nailed his performance last night! He ran hi/lo like it is supposed to be run, and with all the nuances and with all the high ball screens.

    What really came to light is how much of the game JoJo still needs to learn. He has come along faster than any player I can think of in my lifetime… but the game is complex, and last night we saw the difference translated into execution.

    Self’s hi/lo is a thing of beauty, but it takes more than putting a tree in the post who can play with his back to the goal. Tar showed that clearly!

    We all want to see players like Andrew and JoJo reach their potential… I do… but I also want to see players like Tarik reach their potential. I’m not expecting him to build more on his toolbox between now and April. I just want to see him reach his potential with this team! He already has tools, basketball IQ, a heart the size of Kansas, and a dream to see Kansas win it all. Now, we need to illustrate to him that he is more than a tiny piece in the cog that will churn out another trophy for AFH!

    We need to go back and rewrite Tarik’s journey to Kansas. He WAS a senior transfer with one year of remaining eligibility and came to Kansas to be a role player. That piece of history needs to be erased.

    The new history for Tarik is that he came to Kansas to become a MAJOR PLAYER for bringing home a national championship! He needs to lose his old identity of reduction that says “role player means minimal impact.”

    Tarik has the potential to be the missing piece for this team. Last night wasn’t the first time he lifted this team to better play. His actions always get a major reaction from his teammates. He is the spiritual leader of this team. Naadir is the floor general. Big difference. Naadir calls out plays, sets pace, executes from the point position. Tarik’s role is to inspire his teammates. Tarik’s role is to reassure his brothers that we have to lift our heads up, feel positive, play hard and go win!

    JoJo will return eventually… and it will be a welcome site for everyone. But moving forward we will still NEED Tarik to be the spiritual leader, and also to perform well when he is on the court.

    Tarik needs to accept his new role as being a MAJOR PLAYER for the Kansas Jayhawks! With this new role comes the need for him to stay out of foul trouble, because we need him to play longer so he can make an impact. Tarik’s new role it to do what he did last night in every game; to set good screens and run the offense correctly… and he needs to keep fighting for his shot, because his shot is important for this team moving on! He can easily create his own shot in the low post… he has the size and strength to do whatever he wants!

    Tarik should be a good option for us to use him beside JoJo in many circumstances. We have two post positions for him to play… two times the potential to make his presence felt!

    And when JoJo needs to rest, Tarik will remove the slack… keeping us playing well as a team!

    It isn’t about who starts a game… it is more about who finishes it! Sherron Collins proved that in '08! He was the difference off the bench, and we would not have brought home the trophy without him. Sherron knew he was a MAJOR PLAYER with that team, and that knowledge proved to be the deciding factor in winning the championship!

    Tarik needs to know that he is a MAJOR PLAYER with this team, and no longer a role player! If that clicks in his head, you can start building the next trophy case for the new hardware that will be here in April!

  • @drgnslayr I’m pretty sure Tarik already knows!!!

  • I posted earlier that Tarik might have Jeff Graves like game…and what do you know, he did.

    Thanks Tarik for what you brought to the program…and for making this Jayhawk fan very happy.

    If KU wanted to send a message to the college basketball world that “Embiid or not we are equally good” it could not have done a better job. KU placed itself smack in the middle of the “who will be the next champion” conversation. Several analyst are now calling Florida and KU the favorites.

    Also, in most brackets, the Big 12 is the only conference with 7 teams which, percentage-wise, would be the highest since the introduction of the current format.

  • @drgnslayr

    “Tarik needs to know that he is a MAJOR PLAYER with this team, and no longer a role player! If that clicks in his head, you can start building the next trophy case for the new hardware that will be here in April!”

    slayr, this is the essence of what I could not quite get to. He is the missing piece, if he can get his head around what he just did.

  • Tarik was awesome last night on the court. He’s been even more awesome all year with his attitude and leadership. I loved the way Tharpe bounced back with an unbelievably efficient game. No turnovers, and his points per minutes played were great. Obviously, we need him to continue to play well. Black’s performance gives us confidence going into the next few games. Now, about Embiid’s back…

  • Tarik, This Jayhawk would like to thank you for coming to KU. What a fine young man you are. Thanks for all you did for your team and Jayhawk Nation. Best of luck the rest of the season and beyond. RCJH.

  • Tarik Black = Winner.

    True in basketball and will be true in life.

    This team is like the big diamond on the top of the diamond studded ring that is Bill Self’s career at Kansas because of the amazing depth and quality of individuals. If those individuals can just play like a unit for the next month and a few days… What a ride we’ll all have!

  • @drgnslayr I posted this elsewhere, but this seems a more appropriate place: A couple of weeks ago I said that Tarik Black was rapidly rising on my list of favorite players. Someone asked me why. My reply was disjointed and not well thought out. After watching the Texas Tech game and the senior speeches, I don’t have to say another thing. I rest my case. Thanks, Tarik, and as the logic professors say: QED.

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