Jayhawks Hold On to Win 87-79

Kansas was tested on both ends of the floor last night and showed some strengths and faults during the process.  In the first ten minutes of the game, it looked like KU was going to turn the game into a laugher.  A 31-15 lead after 9 minutes of play had me thinking this team had no faults.  In the next two and a half minutes, Kyle Fogg hit a couple of 3 pointers and the Jayhawks hadn't scored allowing the lead to be cut to 7.  So in the first 9:13 of the game, KU scored 33 points.  In the remaining 10:47, they scored 11 points due to a combination of poor shooting and a lot of standing around on offense.

In the 2nd half, the game was tight with Arizona leading until around the 8 minute mark.  At this point, something clicked for Kansas.  They became much more active on the offensive end after switching from their high/low offense to a 3 guard weave.  This was out of necessity with Marcus and Markieff Morris on the bench with foul trouble and Arizona playing very good defense inside.  The next 10 points came from layups and a monstrous dunk by Thomas Robinson on a fast break alley oop from Tyshawn Taylor. Overall, it was a solid offensive game and a shaky defensive game that led to a good win over a team that looks like they will definitely be in the discussion in the Pac-10 this year.

 

Random thoughts about the game after the jump.

Before getting to players, a few things about the team as a whole.

  • Even a game where I wasn't overly impressed with the offense outside of the first 10 minutes, we still had a 58.8 eFG% which is very good.  That's even more impressive when you realize the team was 5 for 14 on 3 pointers.  That's not a terrible percentage but it's also not a good one. 
  • The offense scored 1.19 points per possession last night.  That's just below what they scored against Texas A&M CC and this was against much better competition.  And somehow, I still wasn't overly impressed on the offensive end.  Am I being too hard on this team?
  • Arizona's offensive rebound percentage is way higher than we'd like to see.  However, Arizona has a guy named Derrick Williams.  He's good and had almost half of those rebounds.  He attacked the basket and got both Marcus and Markieff in foul trouble. 
  • Before the last two minutes, Arizona was shooting 40% behind the arc.  So much for that low defensive 3 pt% meaning a lot, huh?

Players

  • Tyshawn Taylor- 4 for 6 from the field and all four were layups.  Also had 7 assists to 4 turnovers, not great but it is acceptable. 
  • Thomas Robinson- Had the only two dunks for the Jayhawks last night.  Offensive game is looking much better than I expected to see this year. 
  • Travis Releford- Hit two threes and had a layup in the first half.  Matched up with Derrick Williams in the 2nd half and did a pretty good job of keeping him from going to the basket.  Also had a few nice plays while attacking the basket.  Most impressive game from him this year.
  • Marcus and Markieff finished with 16 and 15 points respectively.  Can't complain about that at all but foul trouble for both was a big cloud on their night.  For Markieff, this is a red flag right now.
  • Tyrel Reed- Looked lost on his 3 point attempts last night but saved his night with a few drives to the basket and solid free throw shooting at the end of the game. 

Below is a shot chart that I marked during the game.  See anything good or bad here?  Blacks are made baskets and reds are misses.

1st Half

1st_half_medium

2nd Half


2nd_half_medium

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