“@KUAthletics: Press Conf w/ @CoachBillSelf: "Elijah is the guy. Period." #kubball” AND THAT'S IT !!!!
KUAD: Kansas vs TCU Pregame Notes
KUAD: MBB previews TCU game
Kansas University senior basketball point guard Elijah Johnson was in need of a pick-me-up on Sunday, the day after his turnover on KU’s final possession proved pivotal in a rare Jayhawk loss in Allen Fieldhouse.
“Usually I don’t,” Johnson said, asked if he required a pep talk or two during the course of a season. “But yesterday I did, and coach (Bill Self) gave it to me. I didn’t realize until I went home that’s what I got. He gave me one.”
…Self spoke to Johnson and the rest of the Jayhawks during a three-hour team meeting in the fieldhouse that took place after the Wilt Chamberlain Special Olympics Clinic.
“We talked a lot yesterday. We talked a whole lot yesterday,” Johnson said.
…“He’s my guy,” Self said. “He hasn’t played as well as he is capable of playing. I think in our situation, we should judge our point guard more by his record (19-2) than we do his stats. And I do know this: For us to have any chance of being a national contender and competing at the highest level, your best players have to play well, and he is without question one of our best players. He is my guy. I’m going to ride him, and it doesn’t make any difference what happens, statistically, as long as I know he is trying and cares. He is my guy and will remain my guy, period.”
Self didn’t stop there.
“I look at the (Super Bowl champion Baltimore) Ravens. How many games did they lose this year? Seven or six? They lost three in a row, and they didn’t bench (QB Joe) Flacco,” Self said. “You look at the Giants last year. They lost seven. They were 9-7 and win the Super Bowl, and I don’t think (head coach Tom) Coughlin was benching Eli (QB Manning).
“I think sometimes losses are OK as long as you get better through them. I think losing at home, to be honest, was good for us. If I was going to pick to lose on the road or at home, I would pick at home because it would definitely be more of a humbling experience than it would be if it didn’t happen at home. I don’t want to lose — don’t get me wrong — but I think for our team, our mind-set and psyche, I think it was probably good for us to be humbled.”
…Self discussed the possibility of Ben McLemore’s heading to the NBA after this season. McLemore and his AAU coach/mentor have been quoted by the Journal-World saying they will not even think about the pros until this season is complete.
“I would recommend Ben definitely explore, and hopefully he’ll want us to help him,” Self said on his “Hawk Talk” radio show. “Then he must make a decision where he thinks he’ll be at age 20, 25, 30, 35 and if another year helps him accomplish his goals or going ahead and getting out and starting to earn a paycheck would be the best thing for he and his family. I would never say, ‘Stay,’ (to Ben) because his family has sacrificed an awful lot for him to be in this position.
“The kid is a unique kid. You never know,” Self added. “When he studies everything ... one thing we know about Ben, he’s going to be great next year, too. His draft stock (projected top-five pick) isn’t going to go down because he stays. His draft stock is going to be great next year, too. It’s going to keep getting better because he’s so gifted athletically.”
“Do we have a chance last year to go to the national championship game if we had said, ‘You know what, Elijah’s not producing. We’ve got to get somebody else there,’ ” Self said. “Zero. I’m not saying (we’ll) go that far, but I’m banking on the same thing happening this year, because I know the thing that gives us the best chance to win is not to be emotional about doing something because I’m disappointed in a certain situation.”
Everyone agrees Johnson is in a slump, but getting out is the tougher question. In Self’s mind, the best solution is for Johnson to stop worrying about his shot and focus on the other responsibilities that go with being a point guard.
“I think when you worry about shooting, then it lets everything else kind of go haywire, and I think we’re at that stage right now,” Self said.
Johnson had a slightly different take. Though he doesn’t consider himself a volume shooter, Johnson described his shots as “confidence shots” that allow him to reach a different plane when he makes them.
“If I was making shots right now, I’d be playing different,” said Johnson, who is 12-for-47 over his past five games. “I think I’m getting by right now game to game, but if I was making shots, it just automatically pumps some kind of adrenaline up your body and makes you do other things better.”
Johnson had surgery on his left knee in the offseason and battled soreness earlier in the season, but he didn’t pin any of his struggles on injuries.
“I’m healthy,” he said. “I’m great. Nothing’s wrong.”
“Not that I can remember,” White responded when asked if he ever had been used as a reserve before this season. “Even going back to when I was a young kid, recreation, I was always the best player on my team. It’s different, coming off the bench, but you’ve got to adjust to it.”
It’s not as if he would make himself a starter if named player-coach.
“You look who’s playing the wing spots,” White said. “(Am I) worthy to take either one of their spots? I don’t think so.”
Red-shirt freshman Ben McLemore has more natural talent than any Kansas basketball player since Paul Pierce. Releford has four years of physical strength and advanced-level basketball education on White.
“I would like to be performing a little better,” White said. “I would like to be playing a little more, obviously, but I don’t complain about it. I don’t put my head down about it. I just embrace whatever I have to do. What freshman wouldn’t want to be playing more, honestly, but I don’t spend a lot of time reflecting on it.”
He’s smart enough to see the path the man who guards him in practice has taken to know that the work he does today will pay off tomorrow. Releford played 225 minutes as a freshman, 302 as a red-shirt sophomore. White has played 93 minutes 21 games into his freshman season. Others made Releford better, and it’s Releford’s turn to make White better.
“A couple of times, I try some of my best, fastest moves on him, and he’s always there with me,” White said. “He’s helped me to get my shot off quicker. He’s helped me to have a better first step just because Travis doesn’t put up with any foolishness offensively, so it really makes me wonder and try to figure out what I can do to better my game. I’m happy for that because some wings around, they don’t have a star defender guarding them every day, and then they get in games and realize they’re not as good as they thought they were. So I don’t take that for granted at all.”
…Saturday against Oklahoma State, White made his Colorado-Belmont points-to-minutes ratio seem pedestrian. He played the final 54 seconds and scored six points and added a steal. That, as any stat-obsessed sports fan with a calculator could tell you, means that if White had played the entire game, he would have scored 266 points and contributed 44 steals.
“I think without question it should give him some confidence moving forward,” 10th-year KU coach Bill Self said of White’s productive minute.
“He’s getting tougher,” Self said. “Andrew’s getting tougher. He’s a competitive kid. Andrew’s going to be OK. You look at our team. Does Andrew deserve from a talent standpoint to play more? Absolutely. No question. But you look at our team, what’s our biggest need?”
Better ball-handling and passing.
“Now you’re putting in a guy who doesn’t do that as well as some other guys,” Self said. “If we were more consistent handling and passing the ball, Andrew White would be playing more. But that’s not really Travis’ forte. That’s not Ben’s forte, so it needs to be Elijah (Johnson) and Naadir (Tharpe’s) forte.”
9. Is Bill Self underrated?
Is it possible to be underrated when you've reached multiple Final Fours and have a national championship? Year in and year out, there are few constants in college basketball anymore. But Kansas winning the Big 12 regular season has been one of them.
It is eight consecutive years and counting for the Jayhawks, an extraordinary streak in a major conference during an age of unprecedented parity. And despite Saturday's loss to Oklahoma State, Kansas is well positioned to extend that streak.
USA Today: 10 things to know now that college basketball is suddenly relevant
Former Kansas University men’s basketball great B.H. Born, a member of the 1952 NCAA title team whose jersey hangs in the Allen Fieldhouse rafters, died Sunday in Peoria, Ill., Born’s son David said Monday. Born was 80.
“We heard this morning about the passing of B.H. Born,” KU coach Bill Self said Monday. “He’s one of the very few people that have been the most outstanding player of the Final Four on the team that did not win a national championship. He was certainly a gentleman and a great ambassador for KU through the years. Our sympathies certainly go out to his family as they go through this difficult time. I’m sure our KU family is saddened today but also very proud of the legacy that he left as a faithful Jayhawk.”
A 6-foot-9 center from Medicine Lodge, Born played for Kansas coach Phog Allen from 1952-54, when KU won three conference titles and amassed a 63-14 combined record. His sophomore year, Kansas won the 1952 NCAA championship, posting a 28-3 overall record and 11-1 Big Seven Conference title mark.
In 1953, Born became the center of attention for the Jayhawks and established himself as one of the country’s best centers. He was named All-American and first-team All-Big Seven. That same year, Born was selected as the most outstanding player in the NCAA Tournament, becoming the first player to win the award from a non-championship team. KU fell to Indiana, 69-68, in the 1953 NCAA title game, and Born had 26 points, 15 rebounds and 13 blocked shots in the Jayhawks’ effort. Though unofficial, it is believed to be KU’s first ever triple-double.
“He was outstanding on that ’53 team. He carried them,” noted former KU player and assistant coach Jerry Waugh. “He was really good at blocking shots when people drove toward him. He was a small-town guy who was a very good person.”
…“He was an incredible guy who came here at 6-9, 190, and worked his butt off to become great. I never covered a KU athlete I admired more than I did B.H.,” said former Journal-World executive editor Bill Mayer, who covered Born during his KU career. “He became great as a KU junior and senior and had a tremendous record with the Peoria Caterpiller-Diesels. Home town was Medicine Lodge, Kan. He became one of the finest representatives KU has ever had. I’m so glad his jersey hangs in the fieldhouse.”
Born was the first person to notify Allen and assistant Dick Harp of the prowess of former Jayhawk great Wilt Chamberlain.
The Journal-World’s Mayer reports that in the early 1950s, many college court standouts spent summers working for resort hotels in New York’s Borscht Belt in the Catskills. The players would have day jobs, then play games against teams from other hotels to the delight of their guests. As a high schooler, Chamberlain played for the Kutsher’s resort. Born played for another hotel.
“He turned me inside out,” Born told Mayer of his first game against Wilt. “I’d never seen college guys do some of the things he did, dunking, blocking, running along with the speediest little guys ... it was almost terrifying. Several times I just wanted to save my life. I think he got something like 29 off me, and I was supposed to be able to play defense.”
There have been many great performances in NCAA Tournament championship games. UCLA’s Bill Walton with 44 points on 21 of 22 shooting in 1973, Kentucky’s Jack Givens hanging 41 on Duke in 1978, and Kansas’ Danny Manning’s 31 points and 18 rebounds against Oklahoma in 1988 easily come to mind.
One that doesn’t is the only triple double recorded in a title game.
That’s because Kansas’ Bertram “B.H.” Born, who accomplished the feat in 1953, didn’t become a popular professional athlete, and his team didn’t win the game.
Still, a triple-double in a title game? Amazing.
Born, who died Sunday in Peoria, Ill., at 80, finished with 26 points, 15 rebounds and 13 blocked shots in the Jayhawks’ 69-68 loss to Indiana at Kansas City’s Municipal Auditorium. Blocked shots didn’t become an official NCAA statistic until 1985, so Born’s performance is listed with four others as “unofficial” triple doubles in the NCAA record book. He’s in terrific company. Oscar Robertson is credited with three triple doubles, and Magic Johnson one.
Only Born’s came in a title game, and he could have added to the numbers, but he fouled out with 5:36 remaining. Kansas got the ball with 27 seconds left, down one, and held for a final shot. The ball was supposed to wind up in the hands of Al Kelley, but he was tightly guarded. Jerry Alberts wound up taking an off-balanced jumper that caught the front iron as time expired.
Born, who at 6-9 was the only player in the Kansas lineup taller than 6-2, became the first from a losing team to be named the Final Four's most outstanding player. He had scored 25 in the national semifinal victory over Washington. In two games he had scored more points than he did the entire previous season when, as a sophomore, he backed up Clyde Lovellette.
KC Star Kerkhoff
Could the Shockers beat the Jayhawks on the hardwood?
Fans would find out each year under a bill Wichita Republican Sen. Michael O’Donnell plans to introduce this week.
The proposal requires the University of Kansas Jayhawks to play the Wichita State University Shockers in men’s and women’s basketball each year or lose millions in state funding.
O’Donnell said he hasn’t worked out all the details yet, but he said the proposal would likely call for alternating games between Wichita and Lawrence every other year.
“I think it would really benefit Wichita,” he said. “It would benefit our economy. I could see thousands of people coming out. I think this is a win-win. We should be proud in Kansas of our basketball teams.”
KU Coach Bill Self indicated the idea is a long-shot during a chat on ESPN last week.
…House Minority Leader Paul Davis, D-Lawrence, said it would be great for both schools to have a KU-WSU match up every year.
“But this is clearly an area where legislators shouldn’t be meddling,” he said. “We need to let the universities decide these issues on their own, without any kind of legislative intrusion.”
Larry Rankin, WSU’s assistant athletics director for media relations, said that WSU Athletics Director Eric Sexton wouldn’t have any comment until he reads the bill. Jim Marchiony, associate athletics director at KU, said the same.
SLAM ONline: Q&A with Angel Goodrich
There will be plenty of pink to promote cancer awareness in Allen Fieldhouse when the Kansas women's basketball team hosts Oklahoma on Feb. 17, at 1:30 p.m. for the annual "Jayhawks for a Cure" game which will be seen nationally on ESPN2 as part of a 10-day celebration throughout the NCAA.
Prior to the game, fans will have the opportunity to bid on customizing a warm-up shirt that will be worn by one of the Jayhawks during pregame. The customization will provide individuals the opportunity to honor a loved one who has been affected by cancer. The bidding process is currently taking place via an online auction and ends on Feb. 6. All the proceeds from this auction will go to "Jayhawks for a Cure," which benefits both the Lawrence Memorial Hospital and the KU Cancer Center.
On the day of the game, the first 5,000 patrons will receive a FREE "Jayhawks for a Cure" T-shirt at the Allen Fieldhouse entrances, while supplies last. In addition, attendees will be able to have their photo taken with either Big Jay or Baby Jay on a pink sofa. Photos are $2 each and all proceeds will go to "Jayhawks for a Cure." The photos will be taken in the Fun Zone, which is in the northeast corner of the fieldhouse.
There will also be pink straws and cups on sale at the concession stands with a portion of the proceeds going to "Jayhawks for a Cure."
Fans will also have the opportunity to submit photos of family, friends and loved ones who have been affected by breast cancer. These images will be shown during pregame and halftime on the Allen Fieldhouse high definition video board. Please submit your high-resolution images to email@example.com prior to Monday, Feb. 11.
At the conclusion of the game, a live postgame auction will be conducted on the court. Items for this auction include: a pink jersey signed by team, a pink jersey to be customized, a 2014 Big 12 road trip for two, handmade "Jayhawks for a Cure" quilt, two spots at the 2014 "Ladies Night Out" with head coach Bill Self, a foursome in the 2013 Bonnie Henrickson Golf Tournament, a facilities tour and invitation to a women's basketball practice, two 2013-14 women's basketball season tickets, a birthday party for 10 people in Allen Fieldhouse for next season, a Hardwood Club membership and two honorary coaches for the 2013-14 season along with two autographed team balls.
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Big 12/College News
With teams approaching the midway point of the conference season, now is a good time to evaluate the league’s Player of the Year race. KU’s Ben McLemore seems like the favorite, averaging more than 16 points for the team atop the Big 12 standings. But there are several other challengers. Baylor’s Jackson leads the league in scoring (19.6 points), Rodney McGruder has pushed K-State into the top 15, KU’s Jeff Withey might be the nation’s top shot-blocker and Will Clyburn is on a nice run for the Cyclones. Don’t count out Oklahoma State’s Marcus Smart, either.
The K-State men’s basketball team had a lot going for them entering their home game against Texas on Jan. 30. They were coming off of a pair of tough losses but still maintained a 4-2 Big 12 Conference record and a top-25 ranking.
Coming home to play a conference rival during a season that still held so many opportunities for achievement, it would be logical to assume the home crowd would show up in full force, right?
But if you took a look around at the crowd at Bramlage Coliseum during that Big 12 matchup, you’d think the K-State basketball team was scrapping for a bid to the NIT rather than in the midst of a conference title race.
The alumni sections slowly crept to near capacity during tipoff, but the student section remained barren in many areas. Despite having a basketball program then ranked 18th in the nation during a matchup against Texas, a program with which K-State Athletics has recently developed a rivalry, the students only filled up their allotted space by about half.
The lack of student support for the basketball program is absolutely embarrassing.
Iowa State men’s basketball extends their home winning streak to 20, hitting a milestone and doing so in spectacular fashion. The Cyclones start off unconscious from three-point range and never let the lead go, securing their biggest margin of victory in Big 12 conference play this season.
The team hit seven of their first 10 3-point shots in the first 12 minutes of the game. All five starters made a basket, with Tyrus McGee coming off the bench making two shots. He unfortunately went cold the rest of the way, finishing 2-8 from the perimeter but still led the bench with 11 points.
Chris Babb carried the 3-point shooting the rest of the way, scoring three more treys and finished with 12 points. Will Clyburn led the team in scoring again with 19 points. He had an efficient game going 7-10 from the field and made all four free throw attempts. The team didn’t get to the line often early but was able to in the second half, finishing 16-18 overall from the stripe.
What’s most shocking about the game is both Romero Osby and Steven Pledger being just about nonexistent. Both players shot 4-29 combined from the field and 11 points combined. Osby was dominated inside defensively, even without Georges Niang for most of the game who suffered in foul trouble most of the way.
A week ago, Baylor was riding high, near the top of the conference
But consecutive losses at home to Oklahoma and at Iowa State have pushed the Bears (14-7, 5-3 in the Big 12) back to the middle of the pack.
Coach Scott Drew, however, is not fretting. He spun it into a positive example of what makes college basketball interesting.
"Last week everything was great with us. This week it looks like it's terrible," Drew said. "In reality, that's just college basketball. I think that's what makes it so exciting from game to game."
The Bears lost two close ones, including 74-71 at home to Oklahoma, in which Baylor trailed the entire second half but nearly pulled off the comeback in the final minutes by outscoring the Sooners 35-22 the final 13:39.
In Ames on Saturday, ISU held off Baylor down the stretch.
Drew chocked it up to parity, in the league and across the nation.
"I think that's why having veteran leadership and experienced players is so critical because every year in the conference race there's highs and there's lows, especially in a conference like the Big 12," he said.
"The teams that are successful at the end of the year are able to maintain that sense of balance. We like to say, [make sure] one mistake doesn't lead to two."
Drew's Bears will try to not let two losses turn into a three-game losing streak at 6 p.m. Wednesday at Oklahoma State
After beating North Carolina State 79-78 Saturday with a last-second tip-in by Reggie Johnson, the Hurricanes extended their surprising streak to nine wins. For those with short memories, that streak includes one against then-No. 1 Duke.
An 8-0 start in ACC play isn't too shabby for a team picked in the preseason to finish fifth.
Miami doesn't show up in the top three among ACC teams in statistical categories like scoring (sixth 69.5 points per game), field-goal shooting (fifth at 45.3 percent) or 3-point shooting (ninth at 34.1 percent). Their defense is more notable, ranking third in field-goal defense (37.8 percent) and scoring defense (59.3).
But the Hurricanes know how to win. And with a load of experience — five of the top six scorers are seniors — and now brimming with confidence, Miami suddenly is the ACC team to beat.
PrimeSport, the official Ticket and Hospitality provider of the NCAA, on Monday announced the launch of the Official NCAA Ticket Exchange for the 2013 NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championship. The popularity of NCAA March Madness grows every year and fans excitedly seek tickets to support their teams and follow all the great moments of the championship. On March 17, 68 teams from across the country will be selected to compete in the historic 75th celebration of the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championship with hopes of making it all the way to Atlanta for a chance to compete in the 2013 NCAA Men’s Final Four.
The Official NCAA Ticket Exchange allows college basketball fans to buy and sell tickets online for every round of the 2013 NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championship in a convenient, safe and guaranteed environment. Ticket holders who are unable to attend their games or find their team eliminated prior to the final rounds of the championship, have a place to safely sell their tickets. Buyers can be assured that the tickets are authentic and guaranteed, even if the game is sold out.
“Our priority is always to ensure our fans have the best experience possible as they root for their teams,” said Josh Logan, director of ticketing at the NCAA. “Our partnership with PrimeSport has provided our fans with a safe, dependable and fully authorized method for securing tickets and hospitality packages throughout the championship — from the very first round all the way through the NCAA Men’s Final Four.”
PrimeSport also manages The NCAA Experience program that offers official ticket packages for every round of the championship. Ticket packages can either include official pregame hospitality with cash bar and refreshments or a NCAA gift card redeemable for official NCAA merchandise at the game. As fans look to secure a spot to watch their team compete, PrimeSport is the only place where you can get guaranteed seat locations, official pregame hospitality and the assurance of buying directly from the NCAA’s only approved ticket and hospitality package provider.
“We are looking forward to another great year of great college basketball and a historic 75th celebration of this special event,” PrimeSport President Sam Soni said. “Through our relationship with the NCAA, we are excited to be able to offer fans The NCAA Experience with official tickets, VIP experiences and travel packages.”
For further information and to purchase tickets for every round of the NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship, please visit www.ncaa.com/hospitality.
NCAA CBB Games on TV: Feb 4-10 schedule w/network info
Big 12 Composite Schedule & Results
RPI and SOS Team Comparison Calculator
NMH overcame a widespread team illness to score a quality win, but this game will be remembered for Wayne Selden’s offensive explosiveness. He finished with 35 points, 22 of which came in the first half, as he converted shots with extreme degrees of difficulty time and time again. Selden also had a dunk for the ages as he rose up in the open floor to throw down over top of a helpless defender.
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