Kansas to Take on Kent State in Men's Basketball on Monday

Nov. 30, 2008

Kansas notes for Kent State in PDF Format Get Acrobat Reader

Four-time defending Big 12 champion Kansas continues its home stand against 2008 Mid-American Conference champ Kent State, Monday, at 8 p.m. The game will be televised on ESPNU. Kansas, 4-1, is coming off an 85-53 win against Coppin State on Friday. Kent State is 3-2 on the season after going 0-2 at the South Padre Island Invitational on Friday and Saturday.

About Kansas

No. 22/23 Kansas is 4-1 after rebounding from its first loss of the season with an 85-53 win against Coppin State on Friday. The Kent State game is the second of six straight home contests for KU. Kansas has won its last 27 straight home games dating to the last four contests in Allen Fieldhouse of the 2006-07 season. KU went 20-0 at home in 2007-08. Kansas is scoring 79 points per game and giving up 59.4 for a +19.6 scoring margin. KU is outrebounding foes by a +8.6 rebound margin and outshooting opponents 48 percent to 33.8 percent. KU’s lone loss on the season was 89-81 in overtime to Syracuse in the championship game of the CBE Classic.

Junior guard Sherron Collins leads KU in scoring at 18.2 points per game. Collins, a CBE Classic all-tournament team member, has a team-high nine three point field goals and 20 assists. Sophomore center Cole Aldrich leads Kansas with 9.4 rebounds per game to complement his 15.8 point scoring average. He has recorded a double-double in each of his last two games (15 points, 16 rebounds vs. Syracuse and 23 points, 11 rebounds vs. Coppin State). Aldrich has 13 of KU’s 31 blocked shots through five games for 2.6 per game. Freshman guard Tyshawn Taylor has scored 37 points in his last three games and is averaging 9.8 ppg on the year. Sophomore guard Brady Morningstar scored a career-high 21 points, including 6-of-8 from three-point range, against Coppin State Friday. He is averaging 7.8 points per game. Freshman forward Marcus Morris (7.4 ppg, 7.0 rpg) and sophomore guard Tyrel Reed (5.8 ppg) are next in scoring. Freshman forward Markieff Morris is scoring 5.0 points per game. Freshman guard Travis Releford is averaging 5.2 points in only nine minutes per game.

About Kent State

Kent State is 3-2 on the season after its 77-71 loss against Texas A&M in the consolation final of the South Padre Island Invitational South Padre Island, Texas. KSU fell to Big Ten foe Illinois, 69-63 in overtime, in the event’s opening round on Friday. The Golden Flashes defeated UNC Wilmington 83-64 on Nov. 23 before making its trip to Texas. Kent State is scoring 75.2 points per game and giving up 65.2. The Golden Flashes are making 48.4 shots from the field and have 46 steals to their opponents’ 18. Senior guard Al Fisher was the 2008 MAC Player of the Year and leads Kent State in scoring with 21.8 points per game. He has made a team-high 12 three-point field goals and is tied for the team high with eight steals. He also, leads Kent State with 17 assists. Junior guard Chris Singletary is next in scoring at 15.2 points per game and he has 15 assists. Senior forward Julian Sullinger chips in 8.2 points per game, while junior center Brandon Parks leads the Golden Flashes with 6.2 rebounds per game to go along with his 6.4 points per contest. Senior guard Jordan Mincy (3.6 ppg, 2.6 assists per game) rounds out the KSU starters. He is tied with Fisher for the team high with eight steals. Off the bench, junior forward Anthony Simpson is scoring eight points per game and he has a team-best six blocked shots. Kent State returns three starters and eight letterwinners from last season’s MAC championship team, which went 28-7.

The Series

Kansas and Kent State are meeting for first time in men’s basketball. The Jayhawks are 8-1 all-time against the Mid-American Conference and defeated two MAC teams during last year’s national championship season – Miami and Ohio. Against the MAC, KU is 2-0 vs. Ohio, 1-0 vs. Miami, Toledo, Western Michigan and Bowling Green, and 2-1 vs. Ball State.

Team Notables

–Kansas’ scoring percentage broke down by class is – sophomores 40 percent, freshmen 37 percent and juniors 23 percent. Note: KU’s seniors – Brennan Bechard and Matt Kleinmann are walk-ons and have combined for two points.

–Kansas leads the Big 12 in field goal percentage defense at 33.8 percent. The Jayhawks are tied with Texas for second in the conference with 6.2 blocked shots per game.

–KU is 74-9 (89.2 percent) in its last 83 games.

–Kansas’ 27-game home winning streak ranks fourth nationally.

–KU has outshot four of five opponents this season and has shot 50 percent or better in two of its last three games – 50 percent vs. Washington and 52.7 percent vs. Coppin State. Syracuse outshot KU 48.3 percent to 41.9 percent. Last year, KU outshot 39 of 40 opponents.

–Kansas has held 115 of its last 118 opponents to under 50 percent shooting, including all five foes this season.

–On the season, the Jayhawk bench has outscored its opponents 85-71.

Player Notables

–Junior guard Sherron Collins has led the team in scoring in four of five games this season. He is coming off a career-high eight assists against Coppin State. Collins is fourth in the Big 12 in scoring at 18.2 ppg. His four assists per game are 10th in the conference. One of 35 preseason Bob Cousy Award nominees, Collins leads KU with nine three pointers. He has two games of 20 or more points this season – career-high 25 vs. Florida Gulf Coast and 21 vs. Syracuse.

–Sophomore center Cole Aldrich has recorded a double-double in each of his last two games. He is coming off a career-high 23 points against Coppin State, along with 11 rebounds. Against Syracuse he had 15 points and career-high 16 rebounds. He had 27 rebounds in his last two games. Aldrich leads the Big 12 with 2.6 blocked shots per game. He is third in the Big 12 in rebounds at 9.4 rpg, field goal percentage at 60 percent and second in free throw percentage at 86.4 percent.

–Sophomore guard Brady Morningstar scored a career-high 21 points against Coppin State on 7-of-9 shooting, including 6-of-8 from three-point range. He also pulled down a career-high seven rebounds against the Eagles. With 15 assists and only five turnovers, Morningstar is third in the Big 12 in assist-to-turnover ratio at 3.0.

–Freshman Marcus Morris is averaging 7.0 rebounds per game which is seventh in the Big 12. Twin brother Markieff’s 6.2 rebounds are 13th in the conference. Marcus Morris has scored in double figures in two of his last three games.

–Freshman guard Tyshawn Taylor has started each of the last four games and has scored in double figures in each of the last three. His has averaged 12.3 ppg in his last three games and 9.8 on the season. Included was a career-high 17 points against Syracuse. Taylor is making 60 percent of his shots on the season. He is 3-for-5 from three-point range in his last two games.

–Freshman Travis Releford is averaging nine minutes and 5.2 points per game. He had eight points in 13 minutes against Coppin State.

Basketballs Available For Holidays

Basketballs autographed by the 2008-09 Kansas men’s and women’s basketball teams are now available online exclusively through the KUStore.com. Please note that these items will ship separate from other ordered items. The men’s basketballs are $159.95 and the women’s basketballs are $74.95 plus tax, shipping and handling. To purchase, log on to www.kustore.com.

Up Next

Kansas will play New Mexico State on Wednesday, Dec. 3, at 7 p.m. on Jayhawk TV in the third game of its six-game home stand. The fourth straight game at Allen Fieldhouse is against Jackson State on Saturday, Dec. 6 at 1 p.m. on Jayhawk TV. KU will then play Massachusetts in the M&I Bank Kansas City Shootout on Dec. 13 at 1 p.m. on ESPN at the Sprint Center in Kansas City, Mo. That game is part of the KU season ticket package. The Jayhawks will then host Temple on Dec. 20 at 1:30 p.m. on ESPN2.