🏀 GAME PREVIEW: vs. Kansas City
LAWRENCE, Kan. – No. 2/3 Kansas (8-1) will make the short journey to Sprint Center for a clash with the Kansas City Roos (5-6) on Saturday, Dec. 14. The contest is slated to tip off at 4 p.m. (CT) on Big 12 Now on ESPN+. Dave Armstrong (play-by-play), Chris Piper (analyst) and Kennetra Pulliams (reporter) will call the action.
Bill Self Weekly Press Conference
- No. 2/3 Kansas takes an eight-game winning streak into its Dec. 14 battle against Kansas City in the Jayhawk Shootout at Sprint Center. KU has tallied a win streak of eight games or more 21 times during the Bill Self.
- With its 95-68 win against Milwaukee on Dec. 10, KU became just the second NCAA DI team (Gonzaga, 305) to claim 300 wins during this decade. KU sits at 300-67 in the 2010’s, good for an .817 win percentage.
- Kansas will be playing 52nd game in Sprint Center and 312th all-time in Kansas City. KU is 41-10 (80.4 percent) in Sprint Center, 27-6 (81.8 percent) since 2012-13, and 227-84 all-time in KC.
- Kansas is 7-0 all-time against Kansas City, including 2-0 in Kansas City meetings, 1-0 in Sprint Center.
- Through games of Dec. 11, according to the NCAA, Kansas has the fifth toughest schedule in the nation. The ranking is based on past opposition winning percentage, with KU at 76.7.
- KU is 5-0 in Allen Fieldhouse this season and has a 26-game homecourt winning streak, which includes last year’s win against New Mexico State at the Jayhawk Shootout at Sprint Center. KU’s homecourt winning streak is third-longest active nationally behind Tennessee (31) and Gonzaga (28).
- Kansas ranks third nationally in field goal percentage at 52.3 percent. KU is one of only 13 teams shooting above 50 percent in 2019-20.
- Senior Udoka Azubuike leads the nation in field goal percentage at 82.2 percent. Azubuike also led the nation in 2017-18 at 77.0 percent.
- Sophomore guard Devon Dotson leads the Big 12 in scoring at 19.8 points per game. He is vying to be the second-straight Jayhawk and fifth overall to lead the Big 12 in scoring as Dedric Lawson averaged 19.4 ppg in 2018-19.
- KU is ranked No. 2 in the Dec. 9 Associated Press top-25. KU has been ranked in each of the last 206 AP polls, the longest streak in the nation. The Jayhawks have also been inside the top-10 in 91 of the last 106 AP polls.
KU in KC
Kansas City has been a second home for KU over the years. The Jayhawks’ first-ever game — a 16-5 loss to Kansas City YMCA on Feb. 3, 1899 — was played in Kansas City. The Dec. 14, 2019, Jayhawk Shootout will mark KU’s 312th all-time game played in Kansas City, and its 52nd in Sprint Center. Excluding exhibition contests, KU is 41-10 in Sprint Center including winning the 2008, 2010, 2011, 2013, 2016 and 2018 Big 12 Championships in the venue and the 2012 and 2016 CBE Hall of Fame Classics.
More Notes on the Jayhawks in Kansas City
- Beginning in 1984-85, Kansas has played at least one regular-season game, be it in a tournament or a home contest, in Kansas City in 31 of the last 34 seasons. KU only missed 1987-88, 1990-91 and 1996-97 and in those seasons the Jayhawks played league tournament or NCAA Tournament postseason games in KC.
- KU is 227-84 in games played in Kansas City.
- KU played 106 games in Kemper Arena with an 81-25 record. Kansas went 26-4 in Kemper Arena from 1997 until 2006, when it played its last game in the venue. Included in that run were Big 12 Championship titles in 1997, 1998 and 1999.
- Kemper Arena was the host of the 1988 NCAA Final Four when the Jayhawks won the national championship.
- Kansas has won a mind-boggling 27 conference tournaments (13 holiday conference tourneys and 14 postseason league titles) with 25 of those in Kansas City. The lone two titles not in KC were in 2006 in Dallas and 2007 in Oklahoma City.
ABOUT KANSAS CITY
Located in Kansas City, Mo., with an enrollment of 16,000, Kansas City (5-6) is looking to snap a two-game losing streak after is 82-73 loss at McNeese State on Dec. 10. The Roos are coached by Billy Donlon who is 5-6 in his first season at Kansas City and 114-100 in his eighth season overall.
Kansas City averages 70.3 points per game and has a plus-4.9 scoring margin. The Roos pull down 33.1 rebounds per contest and make 6.4 3-point field goals per game, attempting 19.5 from beyond the arc per contest. Kansas City also averages 13.4 assists, 9.4 steals and 3.3 blocked shots per game.
Kansas City is deep with 10 players averaging 11 or more minutes per game. Senior forward Javan White leads Kansas City in scoring at 12.0 points per game and rebounding at 7.6 boards per contest. White is tied for the team lead with 10 blocked shots and 15 steals. Junior guard Brandon McKissic is next in scoring at 9.3 points per game and he has made 11 3-pointers this season. He is tied for the team lead with 25 assists and has 14 steals.
DOK DOWNING RECORDS
Senior Udoka Azubuike leads the nation in field goal percentage at 82.2 percent through nine games (as of Dec. 11). The center is vying to earn the honor for the second time in his career. In 2017-18, Azubuike ended first in NCAA Division I in field goal percentage at 77.0 percent and he was the only player shooting 70 percent or better with a minimum of five shots made per game.
In 2017-18, Azubuike crushed the Big 12 single-season record of 69.3 percent, set by Ricardo Ratliffe of Missouri in 2011-12, and the KU season mark of 64.6 percent set by Mark Randall in 1988-89. In fact, Azubuike’s 77.0 percent ranks second all-time behind Devontae Cacok of UNC-Wilmington, who set the NCAA record in 2016-17 at 80.0 percent.
History has shown that it isn’t easy to lead the nation in a statistic. Azubuike’s feat in 2017-18 marked only the third time a Jayhawk led the country in a season stat, with the other two by KU All-Americans. KU legend Clyde Lovellette led the NCAA in scoring average in 1951-52 (28.6 ppg). Thomas Robinson led the country in double-doubles with 27 during the 2011-12 season.
- Kansas leads the Big 12 in scoring offense (83.1), scoring margin (+18.8), field goal percentage (52.3), 3-point field goal percentage (37.6) and rebound defense (31.7).
- Four different Jayhawks – Devon Dotson, Isaiah Moss, Udoka Azubuike and Ochai Agbaji – have posted 20 or more points in a game this season.
- After their win over Dayton on Nov. 27, the Jayhawks are 29-4 in overtime games under Bill Self and have won their last six OT contests. The six-straight rank fourth nationally. KU’s 24 overtime wins are the most by any NCAA Division I school since the 2003-04 season.
- Seven of eight Kansas victories have been my 12 points or more with two margins being by 30-plus points.
- The Jayhawks’ 112 points against Monmouth (11/15) were their most since KU tallied 114 against Texas Southern on Nov. 21, 2017, and tied for the fourth-most in the Bill Self era.
- After his 7-for-7 performance against Milwaukee (12/10), senior center Udoka Azubuike is 37-for-43 (86.0 percent) from the field in his last five games, averaging 16.4 ppg in that span. Azubuike has eight blocked shots in his last three games.
- Sophomore guard Devon Dotson has scored 17 or more points in eight of nine games this season. He has 11 steals in his last four games.
Junior guard Marcus Garrett has 25 assists and 11 steals in his last five games.
Kansas continues its homestand when it plays host to Kansas City in the Jayhawk Shootout at Sprint Center in Kansas City, Mo., on Saturday, Dec. 14, at 7 p.m. (Central). The game will be televised on Big 12 NOW on
The Jayhawks will take part in the Big EAST-Big 12 Challenge when they journey to No. 20 Villanova on Saturday, Dec. 20. Tipoff from Wells Fargo Arena set for 11 a.m. (Central), on FOX.
Kansas and Villanova will meet for the fifth time since 2013 and the third time in the last 22 months. KU defeated the Wildcats last season in Lawrence, 74-71, while Villanova claimed the previous match-up in the 2018 Final Four, en route to its NCAA Championship. The all-time series is tied at 4-4.