Kansas basketball: Jayhawks eye 14th true Big 12 title, some-more Mar Madness glory
October 28, 2017 - Basketballs
LAWRENCE, Kan. — Bill Self was initial introduced to what he calls “Kansas math” when he hereditary a module that had mislaid stars Nick Collison and Kirk Hinrich to a NBA and was still approaching to win a Big 12 title.
Anywhere else, that would have been reason for a rebuild.
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But there is no such thing as rebuilding on Naismith Drive, not when Self would remove all 5 starters after in his career, or a bulk of his 2008 inhabitant pretension team. And that rings loyal again this season, when a Jayhawks are approaching to win their 14th true discussion pretension notwithstanding losing inhabitant actor of a year Frank Mason III to graduation and No. 4 altogether breeze collect Josh Jackson to a NBA.
“When we took a office here, Kansas math vacant me, since we remove Collison and we remove Hinrich yet we’re ostensible to win it all a subsequent year since that’s a mindset,” Self said. “But we also consider that’s a positive, too, since a mindset with these players is that, ‘We’re going to skip those guys yet somebody is going to step adult and do it.'”
There are copiousness of guys means of stepping right up.
Start with Devonte Graham, who averaged some-more than 13 points final deteriorate while holding a backseat purpose to Mason in a backcourt. Throw in Lagerald Vick, another ensure means of scoring in bunches, and associate ensure Svi Mykhailiuk, who eschewed NBA overtures for one some-more deteriorate with a Jayhawks.
— Big 12 Conference (@Big12Conference) October 26, 2017
Seven-foot, 280-pound core Udoka Azubuike is behind after an damage sidelined him most of final season.
Then there are a newcomers: Mississippi State send Malik Newman is authorised after redshirting, Arizona State send Sam Cunliffe will spin authorised in December, and beginner ensure Marcus Garrett and Billy Preston give a register flexibility and childish exuberance.
All a mixture to make another championship run.
“Everybody’s only got to stay healthy,” pronounced Graham, an All-America candidate. “Keep doing what we’ve been doing, and put ourselves in a good conditions in March. Working hard, starting now.”
As a Jayhawks being office of their sixth inhabitant title, here are some of a pivotal story lines:
Despite a discussion supremacy, a Jayhawks have struggled a past 5 years in a NCAA Tournament. They’ve been bounced a opening weekend twice, mislaid in a Sweet 16 and were knocked out of a informal finals any of a past dual seasons.
— Kansas Basketball (@KUHoops) October 23, 2017
“Getting over that hump,” Graham said. “Been to dual Elite Eights and mislaid — that’s really something on my bucket list that we wish to do.”
They won’t see a building this season, yet a Jayhawks will still advantage from a contingent of transfers in Dedric and K.J. Lawson from Memphis and Charlie Moore from Cal. The contingent has to lay out underneath NCAA rules, only like Newman did final season, yet are means to work out opposite Kansas in practice. In other words, good fitness anticipating a improved director patrol anywhere in a country.
The Jayhawks always have one of a nation’s toughest schedules, and this year is no exception. They open with Kentucky in a Champions Classic in Chicago, play Syracuse in Miami and have non-conference games opposite Washington, Arizona State, Nebraska, Stanford and Texas AM. Throw in a double-round robin of a Big 12 and a Jayhawks will have a heartless highway to March.
— Kansas Basketball (@KUHoops) October 22, 2017
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Graham quickly deliberate branch pro before revelation Self that he’d lapse to Lawrence, while Mykhailiuk dipped his toes in a pro waters. Some even suspicion that Newman would skip personification for Kansas and spin pro, yet he insists that was never his plan. Regardless, a Jayhawks could have been a whole lot opposite this deteriorate if they done adult their minds in a opposite direction.
Newman is looking for a career reboot after averaging 11.3 points during his sole deteriorate during Mississippi State. He led a Jayhawks in scoring during 18.5 points per diversion during a outing to Italy in early August, and his knowledge should concede him to slip right into Mason’s mark on a fringe to give Kansas one of a nation’s best backcourts.
“Motivation is a right word,” Newman said, “because we don’t wish to be that set of guards people say, ‘This is a initial set that Bill Self had that wasn’t tough.’ He’s famous for carrying tough guards.”