Kansas to Host Long Beach State Tuesday at 8 p.m. in Men's Basketball
Dec. 5, 2011
Kansas Continues Homestand
No. 15/14 Kansas continues its five-game homestand when it plays host to Long Beach State on Tuesday, Dec. 6, at 8 p.m. on ESPNU. The Jayhawks are 5-2 on the season after defeating South Florida (USF), 70-42, on Dec. 3, in Allen Fieldhouse. The 42 points allowed were the fourth least in the Bill Self era. Long Beach State is 4-3 on the season after its 79-43 win against BYU-Hawaii on Dec. 2. Kansas will be the third nationally-ranked team the 49ers will face this season. LBSU won at then-No. 6 Pittsburgh 86-76 on Nov. 16 and lost at then-No. 6 Louisville, 79-66, on Nov. 28.
No. 15/14 Kansas is 5-2 on the season after defeating Big EAST foe South Florida 70-42 on Dec. 3. Both of Kansas’ losses this season have been to teams ranked sixth or higher, including current No. 1 Kentucky. Kansas averages 73.1 points per game and allows 58.9 for a +14.3 scoring margin. KU is using solid defense as four opponents have scored 56 or less points this season. KU is outrebounding foes by 8.0 per game, including a 53-32 board advantage against Florida Atlantic on Nov. 30. Additionally, KU averages 14.4 assists per contest. The Jayhawks are led by senior guard Tyshawn Taylor who is coming off a season-high 24 points on 8-of-10 shooting againt USF. Taylor is tied with junior guard Elijah Johnson for the team lead with 25 assists and 11 three-pointers made. Junior All-American candidate Thomas Robinson is scoring 16.1 points per game and he leads the Big 12 in rebounds with 12.1 per game and double-doubles with six. Robinson, an all-tournament selection at the Maui Invitational who was named the Phillips 66 Big 12 Player of the Week Nov. 28, has 11 blocked shots and is third on the team with nine steals in 2011-12. Johnson averages 9.0 points per game and leads the Jayhawks with 11 steals. Rounding out the KU starters are juniors Travis Releford and Jeff Withey. A guard, Releford averages 8.0 points per game and is second on the team with 10 steals. Withey, KU’s center, has scored 10-plus points in two of his last three games and is averaging 7.9 points per contest. He had a double-double with 14 points and 10 rebounds against No. 6 Duke (Nov. 23). Withey is second on the team with 5.3 rebounds per outing and leads KU with 14 blocked shots. Senior guard Conner Teahan scores 6.9 points per game and has made 10 three-pointers. Sophomore Justin Wesley joins Teahan as the first two off the bench. Wesley averages 2.6 points and 2.9 rebounds per contest. Junior forward Kevin Young (3.7 ppg, 3.8 rpg) and freshman guard Naadir Tharpe (1.1 ppg, eight assists) are the other KU regulars.
About Long Beach State
Located in Long Beach, Calif., with an enrollment of 33,419, Long Beach State is 4-3 on the season after its 79-43 win against BYU-Hawaii on Dec. 2. Like Kansas, the 49ers’ schedule is one of the toughest in the nation as Long Beach State will play nationally-ranked teams Kansas, North Carolina and Xavier. The 49ers won at then-No. 6 Pittsburgh (86-76) on Nov. 16 and lost at then-No. 7 Louisville (79-66) on Nov. 28. Picked to win the 2012 Big West Conference, the 49ers are loaded with senior leadership as three seniors have already accumulated 1,200-plus career points. Senior forward T.J. Robinson leads the 49ers in rebounds with 11.3 to complement his 13.7 scoring average. He has 42 career double-doubles and is eighth on the LBSU career scoring list with 1,402 points, just ahead of senior guard Casper Ware’s 1,370 points, which puts him in ninth place. This season, Ware leads LBSU with 17.1 points per game, 14 three-pointers made and 32 assists. Senior guard Larry Anderson is next in scoring at 15.1 points per outing and he averages 4.6 rebounds per contest. Anderson is 12th on the LBSU scoring list with 1,220 career points. Rounding out the 49ers’ starters are junior guard James Ennis (9.4 ppg, 3.4 rpg) and senior forward Eugene Phelps (9.1 ppg, 6.6 rpg). Freshman guard Mike Caffey (4.3 ppg) and senior forward Edis Dervisevic (3.5 ppg) round out the LBSU regulars.
The Kansas-Long Beach State Series
Kansas leads the all-time series with Long Beach State 2-1 but the two teams have not met since LBSU handed Kansas its second overall loss, and first at home, during the 1992-93 season, 64-49 on Jan. 25, 1993, in Allen Fieldhouse. Kansas would go on to advance to the 1993 Final Four and go 29-7. Kansas won the first two meetings – 69-52 on Dec. 21, 1970, in Lawrence, and 66-60 on Dec. 7, 1991, in Long Beach, Calif.
–Kansas has outrebounded its last six opponents, including 53-32 against Florida Atlantic on Nov. 30.
–Three different Jayhawks – Thomas Robinson, Tyshawn Taylor and Elijah Johnson – have led Kansas in scoring through seven games.
–KU has shot better than six of seven opponents this season.
–Kansas has shot 70 percent or better from the free throw line in five of its last six games. Kansas is third in the Big 12 in free throw percentage at 74.4 percent.
–KU has blocked four or more shots in six of seven games this season, including a season-high 13 against Florida Atlantic (Nov. 30).
–Kansas has 38 dunks to its opponents 12 through seven games. Thomas Robinson leads KU with 19 dunks, while Jeff Withey has eight.
–KU has used the same starting lineup – Taylor, Johnson, Withey, Robinson, Releford – in all seven games this season.
–Junior Thomas Robinson leads the Big 12 in rebounds with 12.1 boards per contest and just missed his seventh-straight double-double with 14 points and eight rebounds against USF (12/3). In the second half against the Bulls, Robinson was 3-for-3 with six rebounds. His four steals for the game set a career high. Robinson is sixth in the league in scoring at 16.1 ppg, is eighth in field goal percentage at 47.8 percent and tied for sixth in blocked shots at 1.6 per contest.
–Senior Tyshawn Taylor is coming off a season-high 24 points against USF (12/3), which was two points shy of his career high. He leads KU with 17.4 points per game, which is third in the Big 12. Taylor leads the league in three-point field goal percentage at 57.9 percent following his 4-for-6 effort from behind the arc against USF. Taylor has two 20-point efforts this season. In the Big 12, he is tied for ninth with teammate Elijah Johnson in assists at 3.6, ninth in free throw percentage at 78.8, tied for 15th in three-pointers made per game at 1.6 and 14th in assist-to-turnover ratio at 0.9.
–Junior Elijah Johnson has had at least one steal in six of seven games this season and multiple steals in three contests. Johnson is tied for eighth in the Big 12 in steals at 1.6 per game and tied for ninth in assists at 3.6. His 1.6 three-pointers made per game are tied for 15th in the league.
–Junior Jeff Withey leads KU with 14 blocked shots this season and he has at least one blocked shot in six of seven games. Withey ranks fifth in the Big 12 with 2.0 blocked shots per game and his 5.3 rebound average is tied for 20th in the conference.
–Junior Travis Releford was 2-for-3 from the field in scoring five points against USF (12/3). He had 11 points and a season-high six rebounds against Florida Atlantic (11/30). Releford’s 1.4 steals per game are tied for 11th in the Big 12.
–Senior Conner Teahan has made four three-pointers in the last two games and 10 for the season. He went 3-for-5 from three-point range against Florida Atlantic (11/30) in scoring nine points. He answered that with a career-high-tying 11 points against USF (12/3). Through seven games, Teahan’s 48 points are a season high. His previous high was 46 back in 2007-08, Kansas’ national championship season.
–Sophomore Justin Wesley averages 16.1 minutes per game and is 6-for-11 (54.5 percent) from the field.
–Junior Kevin Young’s six rebounds against USF (12/3) were the most since he pulled down a season-high seven rebounds in the season opener against Towson (11/11).
2011 Kansas Men’s Basketball Holiday Clinic Set for Dec. 27
The 2011 Kansas Men’s Basketball Holiday Clinic will be Tuesday, Dec. 27, from 1-3:30 p.m. in Allen Fieldhouse for boys and girls in grades second through sixth. The annual clinic, hosted by the current KU players, coaches and staff, will include fundamental instruction, an official camp T-shirt, a Junior Jayhawk Basketball, a 2011-12 Kansas Basketball team picture and one general admission ticket to KU’s Dec. 29 home game against Howard. Additionally, there will be an autograph session with the current KU team and coaches following the clinic. The clinic costs $85. To attend, one must apply online at www.billselfbasketballcamp.com as there will be no walk-up applications accepted.
Kansas continues its five-game homestand on Saturday, Dec. 10, when it plays host to current No. 2 Ohio State. Tip is set for 2:15 p.m. and the game will be televised on ESPN. KU will play Davidson in the M&I Kansas City Shootout at Sprint Center in Kansas City, Mo., on Monday, Dec. 19, at 8 p.m. on ESPN. The KU-Davidson contest is part of the Kansas season home ticket package.