“It was one of the best winning plays that you’ll ever see an opposing team make,” KU coach Bill Self said Tuesday on his “Hawk Talk” radio show.
Some viewers thought Staten traveled before converting a layup at 3.9 seconds that gave WVU its one-point margin of victory.
“Regardless of how he got to the rim, he got to the rim and made the basket,” Self stated. “Then he’s the one who defended Perry on the other end. What a great hustle play. That’s a kid who really wanted to win.”
…KU had 3.9 seconds to erase the one-point deficit and pull out the road victory.
Traylor inbounded and threw a bullet baseball pass to Perry Ellis, who, with Staten next to him, ultimately missed a layup at the buzzer.
“It worked out perfectly, but obviously Staten made a good play and Perry was just off balance a little bit,” Self explained.
Staten — who had 20 points, four assists, no turnovers — and Mason — who had 18 points, two assists, two turnovers — barked at each other during various junctures.
“Always,” Staten said, asked if trash-talking brings out the best in him. “I am going to be pumped all these games. This is Kansas. Everybody wants to play Kansas — Big Monday game, prime time. The fact he was doing a lot of jawing definitely helped me out. I like that. That’s why I came back to school (for senior year). I appreciate him for that.”
…“I’m still planning on starting Cliff,” Self said. “Cliff wasn’t his best last night. I’m not going to throw any player under the bus saying what all he didn’t do, but he has to be a defensive presence for us. He has to protect the rim. His man caught the ball with no resistance at all, made two uncontested layups against him. A lot of it was scouting report, being in the right place. He’s learning. It will take time. When he’s good, he’s really good. When he’s not as good, our other players can do some things that maybe give us a better chance. It’s not anything personal, it’s the other guys probably gave us a chance in that particular game.”
Mind if I come to the defense of Perry Ellis?
I know a lot of you KU fans are up in arms about how Ellis missed a close-in shot Monday night that allowed West Virginia to escape with a 62-61 win over the Jayhawks in Morgantown.
Yes, the 6-foot-8 Ellis easily could have made the shot after catching a near full-length court pass from Jamari Traylor with 3.9 seconds left. But that’s a long way from saying the shot was easy. Because it wasn’t.
I’ve seen it called a “bunny,” and referred to as such by Kansas coach Bill Self on his post-game radio interview. I’ve seen it referred to as a lay-up, which implies that it was a simple shot and that Ellis choked, blew it – use the terminology that suits you.
…Ellis caught a great pass from Traylor, who was standing out of bounds underneath the West Virginia basket, in full stride, on the run. He was just a few feet from the basket when he caught the ball, so he had difficulty getting his feet set the way he would have preferred. He was directly in front of the basket after making the catch with a couple of West Virginia defenders trailing him and flanking him on each side. One defender cut in front of him as Ellis jumped to the basket, the other closed from the right.
Ellis had no time to dribble. He had barely enough time to catch the ball, turn his head and try to locate the basket. He couldn’t use the backboard because of a bad angle, so he had to attempt to lay the ball in the basket. He couldn’t dunk the ball because his feet weren’t set.
Could Ellis have taken a little more time, as he suggested after the game? Perhaps, but doing so would have allowed West Virginia’s defenders to adapt, too. Perhaps Ellis would have drawn a foul, perhaps he could have tried to stop and gather himself – quickly – before making a move to the basket.
But there was a rush, obviously, to make something happen. And there was a frenzy that made it difficult to think. It was catch and react.
Let’s not forget Ellis had a team-high 19 points and five rebounds for the Jayhawks. He was a big difference-maker offensively in the second half, but also a part of KU’s terrible rebounding effort that allowed the Mountaineers 22 offensive rebounds that led to 64 shots compared to only 49 for Kansas.
…Blaming Ellis for his late miss is taking the easy way out. Anyone who believes Ellis blew a chip shot hasn’t been around much basketball.
Could he have made that shot? Of course, and he probably does six or seven times out of 10. But to say it was a “bunny” or that it was easy is too simplistic. There was nothing easy about it.
Wichita Eagle Lutz
Kansas junior Perry Ellis has been named one of 16 student-athletes to the watch list for the 2015 Karl Malone Power Forward of the Year Award, the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame announced Feb. 17.
Named after Hall of Famer and two-time NBA Most Valuable Player Karl Malone, the annual honor in its inaugural year recognizes the top power forwards in Division I men's college basketball. A national committee comprised of top college basketball personnel determined the watch list of 16 candidates.
A two-time Big 12 Player of the Week in 2014-15, Ellis currently leads Kansas in scoring at 13.3 points per game, which is seventh in the Big 12, and rebounding at 6.9 boards per outing, which is fourth in the league. The Wichita, Kansas, forward is the only player in the Big 12 to rank in the top seven in both statistics and he is fourth in the conference with six double-doubles this season. Additionally, Ellis was the most valuable player at the 2014 Orlando Classic last Thanksgiving weekend in leading Kansas to the tournament title.
The Kansas men's basketball team was selected to represent the United States at the 2015 World University Games, July 3-14 in Gwangju, South Korea. Two fan packages are available exclusively to KU alumni, fans and friends through BTI Events. Packages include a 12-night stay at one of the top 5 hotels in Gwangju, Hotel Prado, the Official USA Team hotel.
Fan travel packages are available now at http://www.wugusa.com/summer-games/fans/, or contact Ashley of BTI Events at 425.977.2700 (888.HOOPING).
A spring 2014 visit with students in the University of Kansas Department of Theatre inspired alumnus Jon Eicholtz and his wife, actress Barbara Eden, of Beverly Hills, California, to make a $300,000 gift to provide one full-ride undergraduate scholarship for a student who plans to be a professional actor.
“I had a desire to do something for the university in acknowledgement of and return for what it had done for me. KU gave me a foundation for my life,” Eicholtz said. “It also was important to me that this gift be meaningful to Barbara, and that it be a reflection of her career.”
“Pay Heed. The game you love began here. Respect those who came before you. Make their legacy your own. Because destiny favors the dedicated. And rings don’t replace work. In this game you don’t get what you want. You get what you earn. We are Kansas. Together we rise. Rock Chalk Jayhawk!
Big 12 / College News
North Carolina, K-State, Northwestern and Missouri will play in the 2015 CBE Classic in Kansas City, NABC announces.
The College Basketball Hall of Fame announced its 2015 class on Tuesday and includes eight new inductees. The Class of 2015 includes five players and three coaches and is headlined by Ohio State’s John Havlicek, Kansas State’s Rolando Blackman, Indiana’s Quinn Buckner, North Carolina’s Charlie Scott and Long Beach State’s Ed Ratleff.
Three coaches will also be inducted, including Dayton’s Don Donoher, Zip Gayles of Langston, Okla. and former New Mexico State and Illinois coach Lou Henson.
The class will be enshrined during the week of the CBE Classic festivities in Kansas City. The induction is Nov. 20 at the Midland Theater while the four-team CBE Classic is Nov. 23-24 at the Sprint Center. Kansas State, Missouri, North Carolina and Northwestern make up the four-team field for the 2015 game next fall.
If the Sooners had beaten K-State, they would be 9-4 and would control their own destiny. Win out, and OU would have been no worse than co-champion of the Big 12.
That's a big deal in a conference terrorized annually by Kansas.
Now, the Sooners need help just to have a shot to tie Kansas with a regular-season ending victory over the Jayhawks in Norman on March 7.
Can Kansas lose before then? Possible, but not likely.
Here is KU's remaining schedule: TCU, at Kansas State, Texas, West Virginia, at OU. The Wildcats are capable of beating Kansas, but don't count it. It's happened just thrice in 32 years: 2008, 2011, 2014.
Can the Sooners win out before getting to KU? Again, possible, but not likely. OU's remaining schedule: Texas, at Texas Tech, TCU, at Iowa State, Kansas.
The loss at K-State imperils OU's hopes of finishing second. The Cyclones are a half game ahead of OU. The Cyclones' remaining schedule: at OSU, at Texas, Baylor, at Kansas State, OU, at TCU. So the Cyclones have a tough road ahead.
The Sooners could lose to the Cyclones and still finish second, but would need some help.
West Virginia has played its way back into contention for at least second place, but the Mountaineers have a tough finish: at OSU, Texas, at Baylor, at Kansas, OSU.
So Kansas is sitting pretty for its 11th straight Big 12 championship.
This was a good win for the Sooners, because it was about to be a bad loss. OU had spanked Texas 71-49 on Jan. 5 in Austin, yet those hapless ’Horns were nowhere to be found in Lloyd Noble Center. This Texas team was much better offensively and protected the rim with zeal that made the Sooners seem to question every possession.
…This was a valuable victory for its multiple benefits. Come March, the Sooners could face a team of giants. Good to know they can answer that challenge. And speaking of challenges, OU finally won a game that went down to the wire. Before Tuesday, the Sooners’ closest victory was 64-56 in Stillwater.
“Their size, of course, was a big factor in the game,” said OU coach Lon Kruger. “The plays our guys made down the stretch were big-time plays.”
The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame announced Wednesday the 15 watch list members for the 2015 Julius Erving Small Forward of the Year Award. Named after Hall of Famer and 11-time NBA All-Star Julius Erving, the annual honor in its inaugural year recognizes the top small forwards in Division I men’s college basketball. A national committee comprised of top college basketball personnel determined the watch list of 15 candidates.
“I would like to thank the Basketball Hall of Fame for recognizing these hardworking young men and allowing me to be a part of the process,” said Julius "Dr. J." Erving, a 1993 inductee of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. “To be the best small forward in college basketball, you have to work tirelessly and I believe the players on this list have shown that level of dedication.”
By early March, the current list of 15 finalists for the 2015 Julius Erving Small Forward of the Year Award will be narrowed down to five players. The final five players in contention for the award will be presented to Mr. Erving and the Hall of Fame’s selection committee. The winner of the 2015 Julius Erving Award will be presented at ESPN’s new College Basketball Awards presented by Wendy’s from Club Nokia in Los Angeles, CA on Friday, April 10, 2015. The Awards will be televised live on ESPN2 at 8:00pm EST.
2015 Julius Erving Award Candidates
Stanley Johnson, University of Arizona
Roosevelt Jones, Butler University
Justise Winslow, Duke University
Branden Dawson, Michigan State University
Denzel Valentine, Michigan State University
Terran Petteway, University of Nebraska
Pat Connaughton, University of Notre Dame
Le’Bryan Nash, Oklahoma State University
LaDontae Henton, Providence College
Anthony Brown, Stanford University
Jonathan Holmes, University of Texas
Vince Hunter, University of Texas, El Paso
Treveon Graham, Virginia Commonwealth University
Justin Anderson, University of Virginia
Sam Dekker, University of Wisconsin
Three straight basketball road games isn’t normal.
But definitely brutal.
Thus is life for some mid-majors like FGCU.
Men’s coach Joe Dooley was Bill Self’s right-hand man at Kansas for a decade before taking over at FGCU prior to the start of last season.
The Jayhawks, of course, never played three straight road games in that time as power conference teams never do. (There’s a huge difference in road and neutral floors) In fact, two straight on the road is fairly rare. Kansas has done that just twice this season.
FGCU (19-7) ran its Atlantic Sun record to 9-1 and maintained a one-game lead on North Florida by winning at Stetson (67-51), at Northern Kentucky (65-59) and at Lipscomb (76-74) from Saturday to Saturday.
It was FGCU’s second three-game road stretch as the Eagles lost at Iona, at Xavier and at Pitt Dec. 23-30. Since joining Division I for the 2007-08 season, FGCU has had at least one three-game road stretch each campaign.
Last week’s was the first time in FGCU’s D-I life the Eagles pulled off the three straight road wins feat and Dooley said they worked hard to keep their regular road routine.
Complete ESPN Networks schedule
Big 12 Composite Schedule & Results
Carlton Bragg will pursue his dreams all the way to the U of Kansas. Watch him #Get2TheGame. vine.co/v/OxmzAFzxPvv
I'm on track to graduate this year but a lot of hard work ahead this summer! No shortcuts on this road to success. #built4this
A capacity crowd saw Wheeler hang on in the final moments to beat Cherokee 51-49 in Friday’s Region 5AAAAAA semifinal at Roswell.
…Buckets were hard to come by for both sides in the first quarter, which ended 7-5 in the Wildcats’ favor. McDonald’s All-American Jaylen Brown, however, had no troubles putting the ball in the hoop and scored all of Wheeler’s seven points in the first quarter.
Brown finished with a game-high 24 points, while no other Wildcat finished in double-digit scoring.
Super 25 Game of the Day: No. 8 Wheeler vs. Centennial
The Matchup: No. 8 Wheeler (Marietta) will play Centennial (Roswell) in a AAAAAA first-round playoff game Wednesday.
Wheeler players to watch: Jaylen Brown, a 6-7 senior wing, is a preseason American Family Insurance ALL-USA player
What to expect: Yes, Wheeler (25-2) is the top seed in the AAAAAA tournament, but the Wildcats had to claw to win two games last week, defeating Pope 61-59 and Cherokee (Canton) 51-49. Plus, this is the playoffs, where every game could be your last. The Wildcats last won the state title in 2009. The Knights (16-12) haven’t gone far in recent years in the state tournament, but they made it to the championship game in 2007.
McDONALD’S ALL-AMERICAN GAME, April 1, United Center, Chicago
ESPN NATIONAL HIGH SCHOOL CHAMPIONSHIP, April 2-4, Christ the King, Queens, N.Y. & Madison Square Garden
NIKE HOOP SUMMIT, April 11, Moda Center, Portland
KENTUCKY DERBY FESTIVAL, April 11, Freedom Hall, Lexington, KY
JORDAN BRAND CLASSIC, The @JordanClassic is set for Friday April 17 at the Barclays Center at 7:30 p.m, proceeded by the International & Regional Games
Although the public still doesn’t know much about Malik Newman’s recruitment, the five star guard from Callaway, MS is slowly closing in on a decision date.
In an interview with MS News Now, he mentioned that his decision could come during the McDonald’s All-American game on April 1 – the earliest that a decision will likely come.
“I may do it at McDonald’s; I may not,” he explained. “I haven’t set a date yet, but as of right now, I will be going into the McDonald’s game undecided.”
After cutting Ohio State from his list, Newman is down to just six schools: Kansas, Kentucky, LSU, Mississippi State, NC State and Ole Miss.
My Late Night in the Phog videos, 60 Years of AFH Celebration videos, KU Alumni games videos, 2011-12 Final Border War videos, Legends of the Phog videos, KC Prep Invitational, Jayhawk Invitational Videos and more, now on YouTube