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View Full Version : KU Keegan - Jayhawks vs Spartans rematch looks promising


Lzen
03-25-2009, 12:05 PM
http://media.lawrence.com/img/staff/2008/keegan_mug_r42x50.jpg?3913731fb126281141001f4d5e1a4892028de933 Keegan

Rematch looks promising

By Tom Keegan (http://www2.kusports.com/staff/tom_keegan/)



Few things make a sports columnist feel cheesier than writing nice words about the local coach, especially one as celebrated as Bill Self. So when it’s unavoidable to do so, the easy route involves stepping out of the way to let the numbers do the talking.
Fasten your seat belt and digest this astonishing figure: When given an opportunity to avenge a loss from earlier in the season, Self has a 7-1 record in six years at Kansas.

“The reason a lot of times the record is good in rematch games is the return game is at home,” Self said. “In our guys’ mindset we know we didn’t take the same team we have now to the floor in East Lansing. That was not the Big 12 champion. It was a good team, but not one that has played to the level we’ve played at. They’re a better team, too. Here’s a team that goes 15-3 in the Big Ten.”


Sure, some of his 7-1 record has to do with losing to a school on its homecourt and then getting to play either in Allen Fieldhouse or at a neutral site. But that’s not always the case. Self’s team lost to Kansas State, 59-55, Jan. 14, 2006, in Lawrence. Kansas won the rematch March 4 in Manhattan, 66-52.


There’s more to Self’s success in rematches than the three most important factors in pitching and in real estate: location, location, location.
What the 7-1 record says about Self is that he’s a terrific counter-puncher. He knows how to tweak tactically and how to challenge players to do better the second time than they did the first time.


KU’s three prominent freshmen — Tyshawn Taylor, Marcus and Markieff Morris — combined for nine points in the first game against Michigan State and for five points in the tournament victory against Dayton. They’ll need to do better than that in Indianapolis and here’s guessing they will in the wake of Self calling each one into his office for a talk/challenge (http://www2.kusports.com/news/2009/mar/25/one-one-challenge/).


The Sweet 16 is packed with great counter-punchers. For example, Michigan State coach Tom Izzo, during the time Self has been at Kansas, is 11-2 when given a chance to avenge a loss from earlier in the season.
Seven of the 16 remaining coaches have won at least one national title: Duke’s Mike Krzyzewski (3), UConn’s Jim Calhoun (2), Syracuse’s Jim Boeheim, Izzo, Louisville’s Rick Pitino, Self and North Carolina’s Roy Williams. Plus, John Calipari, the best active college basketball coach never to win a title, has his team in play for a return trip to the Final Four.


Here’s hoping Krzyzewski’s not offended at being mentioned on a list with a bunch of college basketball coaches. After all, as he told the world on that television commercial that used to play 50 times a day, “I don't look at myself as a basketball coach. I look at myself as a leader who happens to coach basketball.”


You’d think a leader as great as Coach K could find better things to do with his time than coach basketball. You know, like maybe fix the economy.
Anyway, the fact Michigan State dominated Kansas in January shouldn’t render Self’s 7-1 revenge record meaningless. On Feb. 25, 2006, in Austin, Kansas lost to Texas, 80-55. Not quite three weeks later, Self’s team avenged the loss with a 12-point victory.


KU ready to beat Michigan State? I think so.

http://www2.kusports.com/news/2009/mar/25/rematch-looks-promising/

CoMoChief
03-25-2009, 12:25 PM
All depends on how Collins plays, when he plays well KU plays well, when he doesn't the offense gets in a funk for the most part and KU has trouble scoring.

Buehler445
03-25-2009, 12:26 PM
Interesting read. However I think he is overlooking the fact that each time a loss was avenged, the initial loss was because his incredibly talented roster played like dumbfucks who had never seen a basketball.

While that is partially the case this time, with the first road game, young team, hostile environment, physical play, blah, blah, blah, I think it is arguable that KU doesn't have the horses to come out and beat MSU without certain things falling their way.

If they get a good game out of BOTH of the Morrises, and some explosiveness and ball protection out of Tyshawn, it's possible. More importantly, I think it is critical that Reed and Morningstar hot their shots. If they are hitting, that will force their defenders to not sag down on Cole and the Morrises and potentially allow Sherron to be more efdective on ball screens.

If those things don't happen, I think it is going to take some foul trouble or a piss poor shooting night from some of their personnel.

The chances of either of those situations ocurring? Meh, I'd say 50/50. The fact is that those statidtics are fine and well, but this team is much much different from a talent standpoint than the teams that forged those stats.
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CoMoChief
03-25-2009, 12:59 PM
I think KU has the horses to beat MSU, their role players just need to play well. As of recent, they havent. But anytime you have a top center and point guard out on the floor, you have a chance to beat anyone in the country IMO.

I hope to God, that Morningstar, Reed, and Taylor are skipping classes all week spending many hours of the day perfecting their shot. KU's gonna need it.

And you never know. MSU hasn't been playing well as of late. They could be in a slump and KU can come out runnin' and gunnin' the way MSU did to KU the first game.

Either way both teams should be pumped and it will be a good game. I initially had KU making it to the Sweet 16 so if they get past this point they've exceeded my expectations for the season. I sure as hell didn't think they'd win the Big 12 Conf.

Next season if Cole and Sherron stay, with Lance Stephenson, Robinson and Johnson coming in, KU should be in the mix for another NC.

Mr. Kotter
03-25-2009, 01:09 PM
The key to the MSU game IMHO is whether we hit the perimeter shots and/or threes. If we don't, and MSU's defense is able to swarm Aldrich and shut-down the lane....this young team's season will end on Friday night. If MSU has to defend the perimeter diligently, KU has a good shot at making the Elite Eight again.

Mr. Krab
03-25-2009, 01:13 PM
I think Jayhawk fans better hope that Reed and/or Morningstar shoot well.

sedated
03-25-2009, 01:22 PM
This does seem a lot like the KU/Texas matchup in 2006, when Rush, Chalmers, and Wright were all freshmen. They got beat down in Austin by 25. No one thought they had a chance in the rematch, but won by 12.

Lzen
03-25-2009, 02:58 PM
Kenpom gives us a 55% chance to win this game. That's right, we're the favorites according to his ratings. :) Hope he is right.


BTW. His formula picked us to beat NDSU prior to that game by 10 points 80-70. We ended up winning 84-74. Just sayin'.

Saulbadguy
03-25-2009, 03:02 PM
Kenpom gives us a 55% chance to win this game. That's right, we're the favorites according to his ratings. :) Hope he is right.


BTW. His formula picked us to beat NDSU prior to that game by 10 points 80-70. We ended up winning 84-74. Just sayin'.

Here I am, trying to remote in to your PC, and blah blah blah...:p

Buehler445
03-25-2009, 03:05 PM
Kenpom gives us a 55% chance to win this game. That's right, we're the favorites according to his ratings. :) Hope he is right.


BTW. His formula picked us to beat NDSU prior to that game by 10 points 80-70. We ended up winning 84-74. Just sayin'.

Wow. I didn't expect that. Maybe MSU isn't as good as I think.
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Lzen
03-25-2009, 04:14 PM
Here I am, trying to remote in to your PC, and blah blah blah...:p

Heh, I got a short 10 minute break there.

Bearcat
03-25-2009, 05:21 PM
After beng down 25-12, the game was even at 50-50. Okay, so they went down by as many as 20 and was down 18 with 6 minutes to go, blah blah blah... :)

The only time I've seen MSU, outside of a few minutes here and there the other night against USC, was the Kansas game.... they beat OSU by 15, lost to UNC by 35 in Detroit, beat Texas by 4. Since then.... eh. It's the Big 11. Not that I have any urge to watch B11 basketball, but I kind of wish I had seen more of them up to this point, because I'm fairly confident Kansas can win... and I probably shouldn't be. Of course, this is a lot like the year they lost to GTech in the EE.... it's just a fun ride, and when it's over, there will be a lot to look forward to next year.

I'd love to be there Friday night... it's only 250 miles from East Lansing and 500 from Lawrence.