What a great win. It wasn't the prettiest win we've seen over the years due to Kansas turning the ball over 24 times, which helped to keep the game interesting until the end. The Jayhawks threatened to run away with the game multiple times with the lead yo-yo-ing between 5 and 10 points throughout the night, just couldn't get that basket and stop needed to push the lead to comfortable territory. Thankfully Iowa State did their part in keeping the drama low with their shooting. The Cyclones were 22-70 overall and 4-25 on 3 point attempts. I think Bill Self probably picked up on some 3 point defense tips when scouting K-State last week because this is two games in a row of great defense beyond the arc.
Offensively it seemed as though Kansas played a little better than their numbers suggest as they shot their season average from the field but only 5-16 on 3 point attempts. Domination did occur on the glass with Kansas grabbing a season high 53 rebounds (15 offensive rebounds) to Iowa State's 36.
Naadir Tharpe, Andrew Wiggins, and Joel Embiid led Kansas to the victory with outstanding performances by each player. Tharpe was on fire throughout the game, even prompting me to comment that he was passing up too many shots. He finished with 23 points on nine shots, 4 assists, and 4 turnovers. We'll take that game every night.
Andrew Wiggins was simply amazing at times, especially in transition. Wiggins ended with 17 points and 19 (!) rebounds but did have 6 turnovers.
And then we get to cheer the "Lion Killer", Joel Embiid had a rough first half dealing with foul trouble and earning a technical foul after retaliating to a hip-check by a Cyclone player on a rebound. His second half, however, was dominant. He kept Iowa State from having any success at the rim and made several outstanding plays on the offensive end. Overall, he recorded 5 blocks, 9 rebounds, and 16 points.
Lets hope the team continues to play with the energy and intensity we've seen the last two games. That's good Kansas. That's scary Kansas to opponents.