No. 1 Kansas to Host Nebraska Saturday in Men's Basketball
Feb. 5, 2010
No. 1 Kansas (21-1, 7-0 Big 12) returns home to face Nebraska (13-9, 1-6 Big 12) on Saturday, Feb. 6 at 5 p.m. The Jayhawks, who are ranked No. 1 for the 10th time this season, won at Colorado Wednesday 72-66 in overtime. Nebraska has lost six of its last seven games, including a 76-57 loss to No. 10 Kansas State Tuesday in Lincoln, Neb.
Kansas has the nation’s longest home court winning streak at 54 games. After winning back-to-back overtime games, KU averages 84.1 points per game and gives up 62.6 ppg for a Big 12-leading +21.5 scoring margin. In Big 12 play, Kansas is scoring 82.1 points per game and holds a +13.4 scoring margin. Senior guard Sherron Collins leads the team in scoring at 15.5 points per game and has scored in double figures 16 times this season. Collins leads KU in free throw percentage at 84.6 percent and assists with 92. He and freshman guard Xavier Henry are tied for the team lead in three-pointers with 42 on the season. Henry averages 13.2 points per game and leads the team with 40 steals, which ranks sixth on the KU freshman single -eason list. Junior center Cole Aldrich, an Academic All-America candidate, has four-straight double-doubles after his 16 points and 14 rebounds at Colorado (Feb. 3) and 10 DDs for the season. He is one of three Big 12 players to average a double-double with 11.8 ppg and 10.5 rpg this season. Aldrich also leads the team in blocked shots at 3.6 per contest and had five blocked shots at Colorado. Sophomore forward Marcus Morris leads Kansas in scoring during conference play with 17.4 ppg. He is shooting 58.8 percent from the field and pulling down 8.1 rebounds in league action. For the season Morris is averaging 12.7 ppg and 6.0 rpg. Junior guard Brady Morningstar had a season-high 14 points at Kansas State (Jan. 30) and has started each of the last five games. He is scoring 5.9 points per game, including 7.6 in Big 12 play. He averages 3.5 assists and has a 3.0 assist-to-turnover ratio. Sophomore guard Tyshawn Taylor’s 12 points at Kansas State were his most in five games. Taylor is scoring 7.1 points per game and is second on the team with 74 assists this season. Sophomore forward Markieff Morris, twin of Marcus, is coming off the bench to average 6.1 points and 5.1 rebounds per game. Junior guard Tyrel Reed averages 4.7 points per outing. He has 27 three-pointers, including a 4-for-4 effort from beyond the arc against Missouri (Jan. 25). Freshman guard Elijah Johnson (3.1 ppg) has started two games this season. Thomas Robinson (3.2 ppg, 3.3 rpg) is another KU regular. Robinson started his first career game at Nebraska (Jan. 13).
Nebraska is 13-9 and 1-6 in Big 12 play. The Huskers are 11-3 at home and 2-6 away from the Bob Devaney Center in 2009-10. NU averages 66.4 points per game and is giving up 61 for a +5.5 scoring margin. The 61 points allowed leads the Big 12, as does Nebraska’s 32.3 rebounding defense average (or rebounds opponents average per game). NU averages 7.0 steals per game and 14.3 assists. Senior guard Ryan Anderson is scoring 10.7 points per game and leads the Big 12 with 2.0 steals per game. His 28 three-pointers are second on the team and his 4.9 rebound average is a team best. Sophomore guard Brandon Richardson scores 8.8 points per contest and he is second behind Anderson with 25 steals. Freshman center Jorge Brian Diaz leads the Huskers with 31 blocked shots to complement his 8.5 points per game. He has a team-best 52.8 field goal percentage. Freshman forward Christian Standhardinger sat out the first 15 games of the season due to NCAA regulations and is averaging 8.2 points and 4.0 rebounds in his six games played. Senior guard Sek Henry is a starter scoring 7.5 points per game and he is second on the team with 60 assists. Junior guard Lance Jeter leads the team with 87 assists to complement his 6.8 scoring average. Freshman guard Eshaunte Jones comes off the bench to score 6.6 points per contest and he leads NU with 33 three-pointers. Freshman forward Brandon Ubel (4.9 ppg) and freshman guard Ray Gallegos (3.7 ppg) are other Husker regulars who average 15-plus minutes per game.
The Kansas series with Nebraska dates back to 1900 and Kansas leads 167-71. Kansas is 86-23 against Nebraska in games played in Lawrence, including 49-7 in Allen Fieldhouse. Kansas has won 14 straight against Nebraska and 23 of the last 24 dating back to the 1998-99 season. The last Nebraska victory in the series was a 74-55 decision on Feb. 15, 2004, in Lincoln, Bill Self’s first season at KU and his only loss to Nebraska. The previous NU win was 64-59 on Feb. 10, 1999, in Lawrence. Kansas holds a 28-3 record against Nebraska since the inception of the Big 12 and has swept the season series 11 times, including each of the last five seasons. KU and NU have played each other four times in the Phillips 66 Big 12 Championship with the Jayhawks winning all four contests. Earlier this season, Kansas opened up its Big 12 slate with an 84-72 win at Nebraska on Jan. 13. Sherron Collins led KU with 22 points, while Marcus Morris added 19 points and seven rebounds. Tyshawn Taylor and Tyrel Reed scored 11 points apiece, while Cole Aldrich led all rebounders with nine to go along with eight points. Nebraska jumped out to a 12-1 lead and led 44-43 at intermission. KU outscored NU 41-28 in the second half.
–KU leads the Big 12 in scoring margin (+22.2), field goal percentage (49.4), field goal percentage defense (36.3), assists (17.9) and assist-to-turnover ratio (1.4). The Jayhawks rank in the top three in all but two Big 12 statistical categories.
–Ten of Kansas’ 21 victories this season have been by 25 or more points with eight of those by 30 points or more.
–KU averages 6.3 blocked shots per game to its opponents’ 3.4.
–Kansas has shot 50 percent or better in 12 of 21 games this season.
–Kansas has also held 17 of 22 opponents this season to under 40 percent from the field, including four of seven Big 12 foes.
–KU’s bench has outscored its opponents’ bench in 15 of 22 games this season.
–Through 22 games, nine different Jayhawks have led the team in steals, seven in points and six in assists.
–Kansas forces 14.7 turnovers per game and averages 17.2 points off turnovers per game.
–Senior Sherron Collins scored 14 of his 16 points in the second half and overtime at Colorado (Feb. 3) and 12 of his 16 points after halftime at Kansas State (Jan. 30). He leads KU in scoring (for all games) with 15.5 points per game and has scored in double figures in eight of his last 11 games. He had a career-high 33 points in the come-from-behind win against Cornell (Jan. 6). Collins has shot 50 percent or better in 11 games this season. He leads the Big 12 with his 84.6 free throw percentage. Collins’ 15.5-point scoring average is 11th in the Big 12. Collins also ranks among the league leaders in field goal percentage (ninth at 44.7), assists (eighth at 4.2), three-point field goal percentage (10th at 39.3), three-point field goals made (tied for 12th at 1.9) and assist-to-turnover ratio (tied for eighth at 2.0).
–Junior Cole Aldrich, an Academic All-America candidate, has four straight double-doubles and 32 for his career. He had 16 points and 14 rebounds at Colorado (Feb. 3), 18 points and 11 rebounds at Kansas State (Jan. 30), 12 points and 16 rebounds against Missouri (Jan. 25) and 19 points and 11 rebounds at Iowa State (Jan. 23). He is one of three Big 12 players averaging a double-double (11.8 ppg and 10.5 rpg). Aldrich has pulled down at least nine rebounds in 11 of his last 13 games and had a season-high 18 rebounds at Tennessee (Jan. 10). He has 15 blocked shots in his last three games, including a season-high seven blocked shots against Missouri. He has at least three blocked shots in 20 of 22 games. Aldrich has been named Big 12 Player of the Week twice (Feb. 1 and Jan. 4). He is second in the Big 12 and ranks in the top 10 nationally with 3.6 blocked shots per game and his 3.3 blocks in conference play lead the league. Aldrich is third in the Big 12 in rebounding at 10.3 rpg.
–Sophomore Marcus Morris leads Kansas in conference play with a 17.4 scoring average, which is tied for sixth in the Big 12. Also in league play, Morris leads the Big 12 with his 58.8 shooting percent and his 8.1 rebounds are seventh. For the season, he is averaging 12.7 ppg and 6.0 rpg. Morris’ 6.0 rebound average is 14th in the Big 12. He has three double-doubles on the season – at Kansas State (Jan. 30), vs. Michigan (Dec. 19) and vs. Oakland (Nov. 25). Morris has started 19 games in 2009-10.
–Junior Brady Morningstar had a season-high 14 points at Kansas State (Jan. 30), which surpassed his previous season-high of nine points versus Missouri (Jan. 25). At K-State, Morningstar was 4-for-5 from the field, 2-for-3 from three-point range and 4-for-4 from the line. He is scoring 5.9 ppg in all games and 7.6 in Big 12 play. Also, in league play Morningstar ranks among the conference leaders in assists (tied for seventh at 3.9) and assist-to-turnover ratio (tied for third at 2.5). A defensive stopper who started all but one game last season, Morningstar missed the first nine games of the season due to breaking team rules. Morningstar is a redshirt junior who is the oldest player in the Big 12 at 24.
–Freshman Xavier Henry has been named the Phillips 66 Big 12 Rookie of the Week twice this season (Dec. 7, Dec. 14) and is second on the team in scoring with 13.2 ppg. He has led KU in scoring in six games this season, including a career-high 31 points against La Salle (Dec. 12). He has scored in double figures in all but six games. Xavier leads Kansas with 40 steals and had a Kansas freshman-record-tying seven steals against Baylor (Jan. 20). His 40 steals are tied for sixth on the KU freshman record list. Henry is tied with Collins for the team lead with 42 three-point field goals made. He has made multiple three-pointers in 12 contests. He is 10th in the Big 12 in three-point field goal percentage at 39.3 percent. He also ranks 18th in the Big 12 in scoring at 13.2 ppg, 12th in free throw percentage at 77.8, tied for second in steals at 1.8 and tied for 12th in three-pointers made at 1.9.
–Sophomore Tyshawn Taylor scored 12 points at Kansas State (Jan. 30), his highest output in Big 12 play this season. At KSU, he was 2-for-4 from the field and 8-for-9 from the free throw line. He is averaging 7.1 points on the season and 6.7 in conference action. He has scored in double figures in six games this season. Taylor has shot 50 percent or better in 10 games, including four times in Big 12 play. He has nine games with five-plus assists and ranks tied for 13th in the Big 12 in assists at 3.4 per game and 12th in assist-to-turnover ratio at 1.8.
–Junior Tyrel Reed, an Academic All-America candidate, tied his career high with 14 points against Missouri (Jan. 25) on 5-of-6 shooting, including 4-for-4 from three-point range. Reed has made 27 three-pointers this season and 73 percent of his field goals made have been from beyond the arc. He is 10-for-16 (62.5 percent) from three-point range in Big 12 play and 45 percent from beyond the arc for the season. Reed has made at least one three in 17 games this season and multiple threes in five contests. Reed is averaging 4.7 points per game for the season.
–Sophomore Markieff Morris scored seven points at Colorado (Feb. 3) on 2-of-3 shooting. He has pulled down six or more rebounds in 10 games this season and is third on the team with a 5.1 rebound average. Morris is scoring 6.1 points per game. Morris had a double-double with 12 points and 12 rebounds against La Salle (Dec. 12). He is second on the team with 16 blocked shots and is shooting 56.5 percent from the field on the season.
–Freshman Thomas Robinson scored six points at Iowa State (Jan. 23), the most since he scored 10 points against Radford (Dec. 9). He made his first career start at Nebraska (Jan. 13). Robinson averages 8.8 minutes per game with 3.2 ppg and 3.3 rpg. He is third on the team with 13 blocked shots. Robinson has had two games of double-figure scoring and had his first career double-double with 15 points and 10 rebounds against Alcorn State (Dec. 2). He has pulled down four or more rebounds in eight games.
Kansas travels to No. 9 Texas for an ESPN Big Monday match-up at 8 p.m. on Feb. 8. The Jayhawks will then return home to face Iowa State on Feb. 13 at 7 p.m. on ESPNU. KU will make its third ESPN Big Monday appearance of 2010 when it travels to Texas A&M on Feb. 15.