No. 1 Kansas to Host Alcorn State in Men's Basketball Wednesday
Nov. 30, 2009
No. 1 Kansas concludes its four-game homestand when it hosts Alcorn State December 2. The Jayhawks are 5-0 for the second time under head coach Bill Self after their 112-75 win against Tennessee Tech on Nov. 27 in the final game of the Basketball Hall of Fame Showcase. Alcorn State is 0-9 on the season after its 87-52 loss at Wichita State Monday.
Kansas extended the nation’s longest home court winning streak to 45 games with its 112-75 win against Tennessee Tech on Nov. 27. The win was KU’s fourth margin of victory of 30 points or more in five games this season. The top-ranked Jayhawks average 90.6 points per game and are giving up 59.6 points for a +31 scoring margin. KU is shooting 53.4 percent from the field, while its opponents are shooting 34.2 percent. Freshman guard Xavier Henry leads the team with a 16.8 scoring average. He is making 47.6 percent of his shots from three-point range. Senior guard Sherron Collins is at 13.6 points per game and he leads the team with 12 three pointers and 20 assists and he is tied with Xavier Henry with a team-best eight steals. Sophomore forward Marcus Morris had a double-double with 19 points and 11 rebounds against Oakland on Nov. 25 and is scoring 11.4 points per game. Junior center Cole Aldrich, who will be nominated for Academic All-America this season, averages team bests in rebounds at 8.6 rpg and blocked shots with 3.8 per outing. He is scoring 10.8 points per game. Sophomore guard Tyshawn Taylor rounds out the KU starters. He is scoring 7.6 points per contest and has 17 assists and six steals. Sophomore forward Markieff Morris missed his first shot of the season and has made 14-straight field goals since. He averages 7.4 points per game. Junior guard Tyrel Reed scores 5.6 points per outing and he has seven three-pointers this season. Freshman guard Elijah Johnson (5.4 ppg, 2.4 apg) and freshman forward Thomas Robinson (4.8 ppg, 5.0 rpg) also average more than 12 minutes per game for the Jayhawks.
Kansas is the five-time defending Big 12 champion, finished 27-8 last season and won the 2009 league title outright with a 14-2 conference record. The Jayhawks advanced to their third-straight NCAA Tournament Sweet 16 before falling to NCAA runner-up Michigan State in Indianapolis last year.
About Alcorn State
Located in Vicksburg, Miss., Alcorn State is 0-9 after losing at Wichita State Monday 87-52. The Braves are coached by former NBA star Larry Smith, who is in his second season at ASU with a 6-34 record. Junior center JeMarkus Holt leads Alcorn State in points at 11 per game and rebounds at 7.7 rpg. Senior forward Jonathan Boyd is next in scoring at 10.6 points per game. He leads ASU in three-pointers with 20 and steals with 15. Alcorn State returns one starter and seven letterwinners from last season’s team, which went 6-25. Holt has 13 of ASU’s 27 blocked shots on the season. Senior guard Brandon Rogers has appeared in four games and is scoring 6.8 points. Freshman forward Ian Francis averages 8.1 points per game and he is second on the team with 5.0 rebounds per game. Freshman guard Keith Searcy has a team-best 15 assists on the season and he is scoring 7.0 points per contest. Freshman forward Jamar Ragland (5.4 ppg, 2.2 rpg) joins Boyd, Holt, Francis and Searcy in the starting lineup. Alcorn State was picked to finish ninth in 2010 in the Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC) preseason poll.
–Four of Kansas’ five victories this season have been by 30 or more points.
–KU averages 7.2 blocked shots per game to its opponents’ 2.8.
–Kansas has shot 50 percent or better in four of five games this season. Conversely, the Jayhawks have held their last 79 opponents to under 50 percent shooting. All five opponents this season have shot under 40 percent.
–KU’s bench outscored Oakland’s bench 32-3 on Nov. 25. The Jayhawks’ bench averages 32.2 points per game compared to 17.4 by its opponents.
–Through five games, seven different Jayhawks, including ties, have led the team in steals, six in assists and six in points.
–Kansas forces 15.4 turnovers per game and averages 20.6 points off turnovers per game.
–Senior Sherron Collins is 17-for-28 (60.7 percent) from the field in his last four games and is shooting 55.8 percent on the season. Collins is 8-for-10 from the free throw line this season. Collins collected his 400th career assist against Oakland (Nov. 25). He is 35 points shy of KU legend Wilt Chamberlain on the school career scoring list. Collins has 1,398 points, while Chamberlain had 1,433 points.
–Junior Cole Aldrich, who will be nominated for Academic All-America this season, leads the Big 12 with 3.8 blocked shots per game. He led the league with 2.7 blocked shots per game last season. Aldrich posted his second double-double of the season with 14 points and 10 rebounds against Tennessee Tech.
–Freshman Xavier Henry leads KU and the Big 12 freshmen class in scoring at 16.8 points per game. He has shot 50 percent or better in four of five games this season. Henry has made multiple threes in three of five games and averages 4.4 rebounds per contest. The last KU freshman to lead the team in scoring was Brandon Rush in 2005-06 at 13.5 ppg.
–After going 0-for-6 in his first two games, junior Tyrel Reed, an Academic All-America candidate, is 9-for-12 (75 percent) in his last three games. In that span, Reed is 7-for-10 (70 percent) from three-point range.
–Sophomore Markieff Morris is 14-for-15 (93.3 percent) from the field this year and has made his last 14 shots since missing his first of the season (against Hofstra).
–Sophomore Marcus Morris recorded his third career double-double with 19 points and 11 rebounds against Oakland (Nov. 25). He has scored in double figures in three of five games this season and in 14 games for his career.
–Freshman Elijah Johnson is making 61.1 percent from the field (11-for-18) this season and averages 5.4 points per contest.
–Freshman Thomas Robinson has pulled down four or more rebounds in four of five games this season, including 11 against Central Arkansas (Nov. 19). He is scoring 4.8 points and pulling down 5.0 rebounds per game.
Kansas plays its first true road game of the season at UCLA on Sunday, Dec. 6 at 4:30 p.m. (Central) in the Big 12/Pac-10 Hardwood Series. That game will be televised on Fox Sports Net. The Jayhawks then return home to face Radford on December 9 at 7 p.m.
Kansas leads the all-time series with Alcorn State 3-0, yet the teams have not met since the first round of the 1984 NCAA Championship in Lincoln, Neb., a KU 57-56 win. Kansas defeated ASU 72-60 on Jan. 25, 1982, and played the Braves again the following December, winning 86-72. Both of those matchups were in Allen Fieldhouse. Kansas is 14-0 against current membership of the Southwestern Athletic Conference.