March 7: News Headlines Digest

  • Also see our Daily Threads, March 7, and the News Digest for Yesterday, March 6, as well as Daily Threads for Yesterday, March 6 ####

    Wiggins Waves Goodbye

    ###Bill Self says Andrew Wiggins Big 12’s best###

    “To me, with our team 14-3 and the next best team 11-6, to me it’s almost a logical no-brainer,” Bill Self said. “I don’t believe his numbers blow anybody away. That’s not who he is. To be the best player on a team that’s had quite a bit of success in the league, I’d have a hard time going in any other direction, not that other players can’t play as well.

    ###Newell: Quietly, Wayne Selden Jr. improving his turnover numbers###

    One of the biggest reasons for KU’s improved ball-handling has been the play of Wayne Selden Jr. The freshman had just one turnover in 23 minutes against TTU, which made it the sixth straight game that he’d recorded one turnover or less.

    ###KU basketball, Adidas unveil ‘Made in March’ uniforms###

    KU and Adidas unveiled the “Made in March” uniforms Thursday morning, a collection that will be debuted starting with the Big 12 tournament.

    The uniforms feature a perforated print pattern on the leg and are made with additional ventilation to attempt to keep athletes cool.

    ###Future Jayhawk Cliff Alexander named Naismith high school player of the year###

    Kansas men’s basketball signee Cliff Alexander has been named the Naismith Boys High School Player of the Year, the Atlanta Tipoff Club announced Friday.

    Currently listed as the No. 4 overall recruit by, Alexander, a 6-foot-9, 240-pound power forward from Curie High School in Chicago, was one of three finalists for the Naismith honor — an elite list that included fellow KU signee Kelly Oubre, a guard from Henderson, Nev.

    #####PHOTO GALLERY#####

    ###### Also see our Daily Threads, March 7, and the News Digest for Yesterday, March 6, as well as Daily Threads for Yesterday, March 6

  • @bskeet thanks!

  • Of all the players this season we played, it seemed like Juwan Staten of WVU was the most dominating. He’s the league player of the year in my book.

    I looked at his stats – 18.2 points per game, 5.9 rebounds per game, and 5.8 assists per game, and 1.2 steals per game. I’d say it would be a close call between he and Deadre Kane, 16.7, 6.7, 5.8, 1.3.

    Compare to Wiggins: 16.0, 5.8, 1.6, 1.0. It is pretty glaring that Wiggins assists are so low. He literally never passes when he drives despite players being wide open. It happens every game when teams collapse on him when he drives. But the guy is just a freshman, a few months into a college career. This is an area that I think he would vastly improve on if he stayed in college.

    Those are season stats, not Big 12. But in the Big 12 play, Staten is even better 19.7, 5.6, 5.5, 1.1; Kane 17.9, 6.2, 5.65, 1.5. Wiggins is 16.2, 6.1, 1.6, and 1.0.

    In my view, it should be the top player on the top team, nor the player most valuable to his team. It should simply be the most outstanding player. Wiggins was clearly not the top player in the conference. Staten an Kane have good assist totals, way out distancing Wiggins, but nearly the same boards per game as guards; and more ppg.

    In that regard, I’d go Staten #1 and Kane #2.

  • @HighEliteMajor I agree about Wiggins. He should stay another year and learn to play. hehe

  • @HighEliteMajor I’ll take Wiggins! I’m counting defense too! Adding the SOS schedule, and we have a lot of talented players on our team! He doesn’t have to put us on our back! Winning the league by 3 games is huge! I’m w/coach.

  • @approxinfinity My pleasure! Can’t believe we’re nearing the dusk of this season. As Wiggins said, It’s gone too fast!

  • Congrats to Danny Manning, Steve Woodberry and Brett Ballard for winning regular season championship with the Tulsa Golden Hurricanes in the Conference USA. They finished in a four way tie, and their tournament is this week. Will Danny possibly coach against Bill in the Tournament?

  • @HighEliteMajor

    You touched on a major flaw in Wiggins game… assists.

    He doesn’t hit the open man on his drives. That should tell every coach in America how to scout him… everyone squeeze in on him on his drives, because there is little risk he will outlet the ball.

    But then… part of why he doesn’t have more assists relates to another flaw in his game… his inability to control the ball on his drives! Half of his drives end with the ball going off in any direction and Andrew’s arms continuing through as if the ball is still in his hands. He either turns it over or gets a foul call.

    It is a tough call for POY of the B12. Andrew’s stat line could be better, but then, we have a team of star talent so Andrew doesn’t carry the scoring load. Another thing… is we (sometimes) run our hi/lo. Our hi/lo builds our offense around our post players, instead of a guard. Andrew doesn’t touch the ball nearly as much as Staten or Kane.

    But I’m going along with @Crimsonorblue22 … Wiggins is easily the best defender of the bunch, and defense is half of the game! That makes it a shoe-in for me to decide. Steals-per-game are a part of defense, but definitely doesn’t reflect defense in total. Andrew is a decent lock down defender, even in this period of “Bilas ball” where the game is being sterilized from contact.

  • @HighEliteMajor-Stats don’t lie, but SOS doesn’t either. While I agree with you on the lack of assists & & slayr on scouting reports, I still gotta go with the most consistent OAD on the (IMO) best team. Rock Chalk !!

  • Here’s a great example of what I see with Wiggins much of the time. Granted, he drives and finishes some, and gets fouled many times. But these are points left on the table. It is a significant weakness in his game. And by the way, Wiggins didn’t pass on this play. He lost the ball.


  • @HighEliteMajor

    One picture worth one thousand…

  • @HighEliteMajor

    On the live blog with @JesseNewell, we often grouse about Wigs missed shots on drives to the basket. It is often times because he goes up in heavy traffic like you show and the degree of difficulty for the layup increases.

    I wonder how many pictures you could find of Mason doing the same thing, especially in recent weeks. Mason has really worn on me lately with his wannabe Sherron act. It’s wearing thin.

  • @HighEliteMajor do you have a percentage of his TO’s, compared to makes, free throws, rebounding his misses?

  • @crimsonorblue22 - I don’t. My guess is that he has a 50% success rate – either scoring or getting fouled. But that is a pure guess. I’d say that his actually putting the ball in the hoop on a drive is less than 25%. Again, an estimate/guess.

    @wissoxfan83 - I would agree with you on Mason. He is doing the exact same thing, but with much lower success rates (scoring/fouled) than Wiggins. But more importantly, he’s a point guard and should be looking to dish and create instead of shooting. I have a feeling that will transform a bit next season. But I do wonder what Self’s thoughts on that are. I mean, he tolerated it from TT and seemed to encourage it.

  • Good news for someone who could use some right now: Cliff Alexander is named Naismith high school player of the year! (Article at top)

  • My take on Bill’s increased allowance of drives not to dish: The rules if strictly enforced favor driving to score over driving to dish due to the block/charge call and complete lack of contact allowed. If loosely enforced the advantage on a drive goes to the hacker not the hacked.

    That being said, Mason needs to make a few more layups to be any kind of threat. It seems he only makes 1 of 3 or 4 layups when not fouled. The little guy gets lost in the trees, but I admire his guts. Once Mason starts making more layups and dishing more when the defense collapses on him he will be a difference maker.

  • @wissoxfan83 Don’t be too hard on Frank Mason. A reserve does not repeatedly do such things and continue to play unless his coach is ordering it.

    Nor does a starter like Wigs.

    Self wants this kind of play, or it wouldn’t be happening.

  • @dylans strongly agree, it’s hard to pass out of a spin move as fast as wiggin’s move is. I think Coach wants Wiggins to go hard and often. Not sure what to think of Mason, especially after the OSU game. Give him time.

  • @jaybate 1.0 We had this discussion back a ways regarding Taylor. I think you are exactly right. Self is sanctioning it. Though I was hard pressed to believe that a few years ago. The Mason “evidence” is persuasive.

  • @HighEliteMajor

    Mason was a volume shooter in High School and sometimes he reverts to his old habits. Many times when he takes an ill advised long shot a the beginning of the possession or drives into a forest of trees, you can see Coach Self cringing on the sideline; I am sure this is not what he is being told to do and coach Self has said that much in a couple of occasion on the after game presser.

  • @HighEliteMajor Taylor was 6ft 6" and Mason is 5ft 10", some difference on finishing at the rim in traffic.

  • @HighEliteMajor

    When selecting players for awards, sometimes it gets lost in the translation what the award is for.

    We use the words “Best Player” and “Most Valuable Player” interchangeably when in reality they have quite different meanings.

    There are several players that can make a case for either term. For example, Wiggins would and should be in the run for “Best Player” since he is arguably the best player in the league; however, if he would not play for KU, it is more likely than not that KU would be equally good.

    When you look at the “Most Valuable Player,” to me is the player without which the teams would not be nearly as successful. I think that a player like Kansas State Marcus Foster would be a candidate, not only because he has excelled as a player, but more importantly, without him Kansas State would not have nearly the success it had this season.

    I cannot think of a single player, Joel comes the closest, without which KU would not be nearly as good, particularly in view of how well Tarik played the last game. Who would you nominate for MVP?

  • @JayHawkFanToo did you say we would not be as good w/out wiggins?

  • I see great arguments for multiple guys in the Big 12. Wiggs, Kane, Ejim, Foster, etc. At the end of the day it is a personal achievement and I don’t really get caught up in it. In 2008 when we won the National Title we did not have anyone on First Team All Big 12 as I recall. I’d rather have the balanced play we currently have and have guys “in the discussion” for player of the year. Wiggs had a great year as did Embiid for KU and they can impact games as much as anyone whether or not stats are there to back it up.

    Can’t wait for the post-season. Let’s beat WVU and move on to what this team is capable of doing…cutting down nets.

  • @Crimsonorblue22

    Actually quite the opposite. I said that if Wiggins would not have come, KU would be equally good.

  • @JayHawkFanToo let me try again, you think KU would be just as good w/out Wiggins? Sorry I messed up.

  • @joeloveshawks

    I don’t think you recall correctly:

    Brandon Rush - All Big 12 1s team, second player in big 12 history to be first team 3 years in a row.

    Darrel Arthur - All Big 12 1st team.

    Mario Chalmers - All Big 12 second team.

    Darnell Jackson - All Big 12 third team.

    Big 12 All defensive team - Mario Chalmers and Russel Robinson, both for the third time.

    Big 12 Sixth Man Award - Sherron Collins; first KU player to receive the award.

    Phillips 66 Big 12 Championship All-Tournament Team - Brandon Rush (Most Outstanding Player), Mario Chalmers.

    NCAA (Midwest) Regional All-Tournament Team - Brandon Rush, Mario Chalmers, Sasha Kaun.

    NCAA Basketball Tournament Most Outstanding Player - Mario Chalmers.

    The 2008 teams was one of KU’s more decorated teams.

  • @AsadZ Hmmm … I kind of think Tyshawn was just as poor finishing at the rim as Mason, even at his height (which was 6’4" in shoes, 6’2.75 without, fyi). Taylor was a disaster, actually, on many, many occasions. His career was pretty much a disaster in my opinion except for the second half of his senior season.

    @JayHawkFanToo: I’d go with Kean Anderson. TCU would be much worse without him … just kidding. I’d still go with Staten. WVU’s drop off, I think, would be much greater without him than if any team, lost any other player. We would have still won the Big 12 in my opinion without either Embiid or Wiggins.

  • @Crimsonorblue22

    Yes. Maybe not “exactly” as good, but the drop off would be minimal and KU would still win the Conference… and Green and White would have a lot more experience.

  • @JayHawkFanToo just on defense alone, we would have been beat by quite a few more teams, just my opinion.

  • @HighEliteMajor

    But…TCU would still be last, whereas Kansas Sate finishes in the bottom instead of the top half.

    I know, semantics. A case can be made for several players, again, depending on how the award is defined. Probably there should be two, one for best player (most outstanding) and one for most valuable player.

  • If I could have one dream come true… it would be Andrew coming back next year. Meanwhile, Andrew and Frank would get a training session with John Lucas this summer to help both of them work on ticks on their jump shots and drive finishes.

    Lucas did wonders for Tyshawn, especially helping him finish his drives.

    It is such a pity to lose Andrew from college before he learns even a little bit to enhance his talent. The guy didn’t even get going on his upside yet…

  • @HighEliteMajor won the big 12 w/out Wiggins and Embiid? I’ll stop because I can’t think of anything nice to say .

  • @Crimsonorblue22

    Too much caffeine Crimson?

    I believe HEM said Wiggins “OR” Embiid, which by the way I agree.

    Now, think of something nice to say…like TGIF? 🙂

  • @JayHawkFanToo need caffeine! Makes me sad to hear these opinions.

  • @HighEliteMajor I think calling Taylor’s career a disaster is too harsh. He did have several off the court issues but on the court you not be realizing that he played out of position after arriving at KU. Furthermore he had to deal with injuries, literally played on one knee in some games and the arrival of X caused some issues regarding his role on the team. Overall he was clutch though.

  • I absolutely love watching Andrew Wiggins play. I am certainly glad he decided to become a Kansas Jayhawk. It is rare to find a player of his skill set that is also a team player. He is the best player on the best team in the Big XII and he even delivered in the clutch versus Duke and Texas Tech. There are those out there that never cared for the young man, mostly because of his one and done status. Choosing to point out the deficiencies of this freshman phenom is laughable. His NBA stock will not suffer one bit. He did not ask for one and done status. He did however, earn it! Andrew Wiggins has been an excellent teammate and deserves to be Big 12 Player of the Year. Averaging 18 points a game did not help Kane, Ejim, or Staten win the Big 12 Title. Kansas was not swept by any team in the Big XII. Andrew Wiggins has not done anything to bring negative attention to the Kansas Jayhawks. I’m a fan. I hope he wins.

  • @KansasComet God bless you!

  • @JayHawkFanToo I recalled 1st team as being…

    Beasley, Durant, Blake Griffin and 2 other non-Jayhawks.

    I must be wrong but Fran Fraschilla tweeted the same thing earlier today. Perhaps we are both wrong? Is Fran ever wrong?

    I certainly did not mention them as being not decorated. I just thought they all made 2nd Team…and my stats (wrong or right) were all Big 12 related.

  • @Crimsonorblue22 - The distinction noted by @JayHawkFanToo is important. It was “either Embiid or Wiggins”, meaning either one of them, and not meaning “both” – which would have been “and.” If we were missing just one of them, I still think we would have won the Big 12.

    @AsadZ - Do you think TT was clutch before the second half of his senior season? I don’t. And he was selfish. I go back to Selby’s season. TT started off the season like gangbusters, had a 10 assist game; was really playing like a point guard. Then, when Selby got on the court, he immediately went in the tank. I personally believe that Selby was threatening to TT and TT thought he had to be “the man.” Taylor had the infamous “I finally got mine” quote after scoring 20 or something like that in a December game at the Sprint center. The second half of his senior season made up for the rest, though, as his play was crucial in our title game run. That was an amazing March.

  • @HighEliteMajor got it!

  • @HighEliteMajor Good points about stats. But I believe that Wiggins’ stats, if he played on the other teams, would be higher. He didn’t need to score as much due to our balance. I know that logic asks voters to make assumptions. But, he was the best player on the best team in the league. His defense should also count. Also, I may be in the minority, but I’m not sure we win the league without either Embiid or Wiggins. They were our 2 best players.

  • @joeloveshawks

    You and Fraschilla are obviously wrong. Durant and Beasley did not play in the same year; in 2008 Durant was already in the NBA, he left in 2007.

    Here is a link to the conference official press release that verifies the information I provided in my previous post:

    Big 12 conference press release…

Log in to reply