clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

NCAA Tournament: Kansas - UConn Recap

Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

There wasn't much bad news during Saturday's game, but we will start with it anyway: Perry Ellis knocked his knee, Kansas came out flat in the second half, and if Amida Brimah hadn't picked up a ton of fouls the game probably would have been a lot closer. The end.

Now the good news: Kansas played the toughest team according to KenPom of any 1 seed, and had the easiest time of things of any 1 seed. Now add in the fact they shot just 35 percent from three (not awful, but definitely about as bad as they'll shoot), Connecticut shot 45 percent from three, and Kansas's second best player had one of his worst games of the season. And the Jayhawks still won by 12 and it could have been a lot worse.

Offensively, the Jayhawks posted 1.09 PPP, which isn't great, but against a defense like Connecticut's it is to be applauded. Even better, Kansas shot 56 percent on twos against one of the best 2-point defenses in the country. The offense went into a lull in the second half in which there was a bit too much aimless passing and 1 on 1 stuff, but when they were moving the ball like we all know they can, they were impossible to stop. Kansas didn't pound the offensive glass (just 29 percent offensive rebounding rate) and turned it over on almost 20 percent of its possessions, so it's a good thing they were able to get almost any shot they wanted whenever they wanted.

Defensively, Kansas was probably even more impressive. The Jayhawks allowed just .91 points per possession even with Connecticut on fire from three, and while the Jayhawks did allow some open jumpers early, for the most part they forced the Huskies into amazingly tough shots. Connecticut also helped Kansas out big time by not crashing the glass to prevent run outs, meaning basically any time Connecticut missed a shot it was the end of the possession. Connecticut grabbed just 12.2 percent of its misses. The lone bad news was Kansas forced turnovers on just 9 percent of Husky possessions, but when you create as tough of shots as they did, it doesn't really matter.

Frank Mason had one of his worst games of the year, going just 1-4 on twos and 0-4 from three. He was 6-6 from the line, which was nice, but he also had just 4 assists and 4 turnovers.

Wayne Selden had an excellent game, going 6-10 on twos and 2-5 from three while also supplying Kansas's dunk of the tournament with an alley oop late in the game. Selden also grabbed 7 rebounds.

Landen Lucas was 2-4 from the field and 2-2 from the line, and continued to show his value on the glass and defensively. Lucas had 12 rebounds and 3 blocks, and also several plays where he jumped straight up and walled guys off when they tried to drive. Oh and he also had 3 assists.

Devonte Graham rebounded a bit from a tough opening round game, going 2-3 from two and 2-5 from three. He did have just 2 assists and 2 turnovers however.

Perry Ellis continues to make his last tournament a good one. Ellis was 7-9 from two and 2-3 from three, and added 8 rebounds.

Jamari Traylor missed his only shot, but had two amazing blocked shots (and a third one that I don't remember) and played pretty well defensively.

Brannen Greene played 9 minutes without taking a shot.

Sviatoslav Mykhailiuk played 6 minutes, made a free throw, and had a turnover. I guess it makes sense he didn't play more given how well Kansas played but I think he could have played more.

Carlton Bragg played 4 minutes and scored 2 points and had 2 offensive rebounds.