No. 1 Kansas to Face No. 6 Villanova in NCAA Elite Eight
2016 NCAA CHAMPIONSHIP ELITE EIGHT®
Advancing to its 21st Elite Eight, No. 1 seed Kansas (33-4, 15-3 Big 12) will face No. 2 seed Villanova (32-5, 16-2 Big East) on Saturday, March 26, at 7:50 p.m. (Central) at KFC Yum! Center in Louisville, Kentucky. Kansas has the nation’s longest active winning streak at 17 games after defeating Maryland, 79-63, on March 24 in Louisville. Villanova advanced to the Elite Eight with a 92-69 win against Miami (Fla.) also in Louisville. The winner of the Kansas-Villanova contest will advance to the Final Four in Houston.
Kansas is making its 45th NCAA Championship appearance and its 27th-consecutive trip to the tournament, the longest active streak in the nation and ties the longest in tournament history (North Carolina, 1975-2001).
This marks the seventh-straight season that the Jayhawks have earned a No. 1 or No. 2 seed. In head coach Bill Self’s 13 seasons in Lawrence, KU has never been seeded lower than fourth. Since seeding began in 1979, Kansas has been a No. 1 12 times, including six times under Self (2007, 2008, 2010, 2011, 2013 and 2016).
KU, which is ranked No. 1 in the latest Associated Press and USA Today Coaches polls, has won 12-straight, 16 Big 12 and an NCAA best 59 regular-season conference championships, including the 2016 title. KU also won the 2016 Big 12 Postseason Championship, its 14th all-time and 10th Big 12.
Kansas averages 81.9 points per game with a 14.2 scoring margin. The Jayhawks pull down 38.1 rebounds per game with a 5.5 rebound margin. KU has a 49.6 field goal percentage and holds its opponents to 39.7 percent shooting. The Jayhawks shoot 42.2 percent from 3-point range and average 16.0 assists, 6.7 steals and 4.2 blocked shots per game.
In three NCAA Championship victories the Jayhawks are averaging 85.7 points with a 18.0 scoring margin. KU has dominated the boards averaging 42.7 to its opponents’ 29.7 for a 13.0 rebound margin. Also in the tourney, the Jayhawks are shooting 50.8 percent from the field and average 17.0 assists, 5.7 blocked shots and 5.3 steals per victory.
After his 27 points against Maryland (3/24), senior F Perry Ellis has scored 20 or more points in three straight and seven of his last eight contests. He leads Kansas in scoring 17.2 ppg and is second in rebounding at 5.9 rpg. Ellis has 16 games or 20 or more points this season. Ellis averaged 17.7 points and 5.8 rebounds during Big 12 play. Junior G Wayne Selden Jr., is a starter who scores 13.7 points per game and has averaged 18.3 ppg in the NCAA Championship. Selden leads KU with 74 3-pointers this season. At 40.4 percent, Selden is one of eight Jayhawks making 40 percent or better from 3-point range. Junior G Frank Mason III is averaging 12.8 points for the season. Mason leads KU with 4.6 assists per contest and is second on the team with 49 steals. Sophomore G Devonte’ Graham, the Most Outstanding Player of the 2016 Big 12 Championship where he averaged 17.3 point and 3.3 assists in leading KU to the title, leads KU with 54 steals and is second on the team in assists (140) and 3-point field goals made (70). He is scoring 11.2 points per game. Junior F Landen Lucas rounds out the KU starters. He is coming off his third double-double of the season with 14 points and 11 rebounds against Maryland (3/24). Lucas leads Kansas in rebounding at 6.6 boards per game, which ranks in the top seven in the Big 12. Lucas scores 5.7 points per game.
Sophomore G Sviatoslav Mykhailiuk scored a career-high 23 points against Austin Peay (3/17). He averages 5.5 points and has made 37 3-pointers this season. Junior G Brannen Greene is a regular who has made 31 3-pointers this season and scores 5.4 points per game off the bench. Greene missed the Maryland game (3/24) due to back issues. Freshman F Carlton Bragg Jr., averaged 8.0 points in three Big 12 Championship games and is averaging 4.0 ppg and 2.4 rpg for the season. He pulled down a career-high eight rebounds versus Maryland (3/24). Senior F Jamari Traylor leads KU with 33 blocked shots, including five in three NCAA Championship games. Traylor is averaging 3.0 points and 3.3 rebounds for the season. Freshman Cheick Diallo averages 3.0 points and 2.5 rebounds per game. His 23 blocked shots are tied for second on the team with Lucas and senior F Hunter Mickelson, who has started 10 games this season and is averaging 2.3 points and 2.3 rebounds.
Located in Villanova, Pennsylvania, just outside Philadelphia, Villanova University (32-5, 16-2 Big East) has won three straight and eight of its last nine games heading into the Elite Eight. The Wildcats are coached by Jay Wright who is 351-157 in his 16th season at Villanova and 473-242 in his 23rd season overall. Villanova is ranked sixth in both the Associated Press and USA Today Coaches’ polls and won the 2016 Big East regular-season title by two games over runner-up Xavier. The Wildcats average 77.9 points per game and have a 14.1 scoring margin. Villanova pulls down 35.2 rebounds per contest with a 2.1 rebound margin. The Wildcats make 8.8 3-pointers per contest and average 16.5 assists, 6.9 steals and 3.4 blocked shots per game.
Junior G Josh Hart leads Villanova in scoring at 15.4 points per game. He is second on the team with 6.8 rebounds per contest and 41 steals. Hart has made 52 3-pointers this season. Junior F Kris Jenkins leads Villanova with 93 3-pointers made in 2015-16 as he scores 13.5 points per game. Senior G Ryan Arcidiacono is second on the team with 70 3-pointers made as he averages 12.3 points per game and has a team high 163 assists and 52 steals. Senior F Daniel Ochefu pulls down a team best 7.6 rebounds per game and also leads the Wildcats with 53 blocked shots. Ochefu makes 61.9 percent field goals to lead Villanova. Freshman G Jalen Brunson rounds out the starters. He is second on the team with 98 assists and averages 9.8 points per game. Brunson has made 47 3-pointers. Rounding out the Villanova regulars is sophomore G Phil Booth (6.8 ppg), redshirt freshman G Mikal Bridges (6.4 ppg) and junior F Darryl Reynolds (3.8 ppg, 4.7 rpg).
THE KANSAS-VILLANOVA SERIES
This series dates back to 1968 and Kansas holds a 3-2 advantage. Kansas defeated Villanova, 55-49, in the 1968 NIT on March 18, 1965. The two teams then played a home-and-home series in 2004-05 with Kansas winning 86-79 on Jan. 2, 2004, in Allen Fieldhouse and Villanova winning 83-64 on Jan. 22, 2005, in Philadelphia. Kansas defeated Villanova, 72-57, in the 2008 NCAA Midwest Regional Sweet 16 en route to its NCAA National Championship in Detroit. Villanova won the last meeting, 63-59, in the second round of the 2013 Battle 4 Atlantis in the Bahamas.
A KANSAS WIN WOULD…
Make Kansas 34-4 and give KU 34 victories for the sixth time in school history with three of those in the Bill Self era… Extend KU’s winning streak to 18 games, its longest of the season and longest since KU opened the 2010-11 season 18-0… Advance KU to its 15th Final Four and its third under Self… Make KU 15-6 in its Elite Eight games played in the NCAA Championship… Make KU 18-4 away from Allen Fieldhouse this season… Make the KU-Villanova 4-2 in favor of Kansas… Make Kansas 101-43 all-time in NCAA Tournament games… Make Self 386-82 while at Kansas, 593-187 all-time and 41-16 in the NCAA Championship (31-11 while at KU)… Make Kansas 2,187-835 all-time.
A KANSAS LOSS WOULD…
End Kansas’ season at 33-5… End a KU 17-game winning streak, its longest of the season… Tie the KU-Villanova series at 3-3… Make Kansas 17-5 away from Allen Fieldhouse this season… Make 14-7 in Elite Eight in games in the NCAA Championship… Make Bill Self 385-83 while at Kansas, 592-188 all-time and 40-17 in the NCAA Tournament (30-12 while at Kansas)… Make Kansas 2,186-836 all-time.
• Kansas improve to 12-2 against teams ranked in the Associated Press (AP) Top 25 this season.
• Kansas’ victory over Maryland in the regional semifinals marked the program’s 100th win during NCAA Championship play (100-43).
• Kansas (33-4) reached 33 wins for the ninth time in school history with five of those during the Bill Self era. The Jayhawks have the most wins (33) and the highest winning percentage (.892) of all 351 NCAA Division I teams.
• Kansas extended its winning streak to 17 games. It is KU’s longest of the season and the longest active winning streak in NCAA Division I. KU features 14 winning streaks of 10 games or better during the Bill Self era.
• The Jayhawks have now won eight-straight neutral-site games, not including the Dec. 12 win over Oregon State at Sprint Center in Kansas City, which was deemed a home game by the NCAA.
• Kansas out-rebounded Maryland, 43-28. The Jayhawks have outrebounded their last two opponents (UConn and Maryland) by an average margin of 17.5 rebounds per game.
• Senior F Perry Ellis passed Paul Pierce for eighth on KU’s all-time scoring list, totaling 1,794 career points after scoring 27 points on 10-of-17 shooting.
• Ellis has seven 20-point scoring efforts in the last eight games. During six postseason games this season, Ellis averages 21.2 points on 60.3 percent shooting from the field.
• Junior F Landen Lucas recorded his third double-double of the season and fourth of his career with 14 points on 6-of-7 shooting with 11 rebounds.
• Junior G Frank Mason III registered 11 points for his 30th double-figure scoring effort of the season.
• Junior Wayne Selden Jr. scored 19 points for this third-straight double-figure scoring effort in NCAA postseason play.
• Freshman F Carlton Bragg Jr. pulled down a career-high eight rebounds, which included seven in the first half.
KANSAS vs. THE NCAA CHAMPIONSHIP FIELD
Kansas has faced 12 NCAA Championship teams in 2015-16 with a 19-3 record. Those include No. 2 seed Oklahoma (2-0), No. 2 seed Michigan State (0-1), No. 3 seed West Virginia (2-1), No. 4 seed Iowa State (1-1), No. 4 seed Kentucky (1-0), No. 5 seed Baylor (3-0), No. 5 seed Maryland (1-0), No. 6 seed Texas (2-0), No. 7 seed Oregon State (1-0), No. 8 seed Texas Tech (2-0), No. 9 seed Connecticut (1-0), No. 11 seed Vanderbilt (1-0), No. 16 seed Holy Cross (1-0) and No. 16 seed Austin Peay (1-0).
Kansas is the No. 1 seed for the 12th time since the NCAA Championship started seeding in 1979: 1986-92-95-97-98-2002-07-08-10-11-13-16. This is the sixth time KU has been a No. 1 seed under Bill Self. Kansas is 32-10 as a No. 1 seed, has won all 12 of its No. 1 seed first-round games and has advanced to three Final Fours (1986, 2002 and 2008) as the No. 1 seed. KU’s 42 games played as a No. 1 seed are its most in the NCAA Championship. It’s No. 2 seed is next with 27 games.
KANSAS IN THE NCAA CHAMPIONSHIP
• This year marks Kansas’ 45th NCAA Championship appearance.
• Kansas’ 27-straight NCAA Championship appearances, from 1990-2016, is the nation’s longest active streak and is tied for the best all time (North Carolina had 27-straight appearances from 1975-2001).
• Under head coach Bill Self, Kansas is 30-11 (73.2 percent) in the NCAA Championship with eight Sweet 16s, six Elite Eights, two Final Fours, one NCAA Championship title and one NCAA runner-up finish.
• In the last 15 NCAA Championships, including 2016, Kansas has a 39-13 (75.0 percent) record with one NCAA National Championship (2008), four Final Four (2002-03-08-12) and eight Elite Eight (2002-03-04-07-08-11-12-16) appearances.
• Kansas’ 45 NCAA Championship appearances are tied for third nationally behind only Kentucky (54), North Carolina (47) and UCLA (45).
• Kansas sports an all-time NCAA Championship record of 100-43. The Jayhawks’ 100 wins trail only Kentucky (121), North Carolina (114) and Duke (107).
• The Jayhawks will play their 144th NCAA Championship game on Saturday. The Jayhawks’ 143 games in the event rank fourth all-time in NCAA history, behind Kentucky (169), North Carolina (158) and UCLA (147).
• Entering the 2016 event, KU’s NCAA Championship winning percentage of 69.3 percent ranks sixth all-time for a minimum of 20 games played.
• Kansas coach Bill Self is making his 18th-consecutive appearance in the NCAA Championship as a head coach, which is fifth-best consecutive string in tourney history by a head coach: 23 Dean Smith (1975-97), 20 Roy Williams (1990-2009), 21 Mike Krzyzewski, (1996-2016), 19 Tom Izzo (1998-2016), 18 Bill Self (1999-2016), 17 Rick Barnes (1996-2012). Self, Krzyzewski and Izzo are the only active streaks.
• KU is one of eight schools that have won at least three NCAA Championships. The Jayhawks won the NCAA crown in 1952, 1988 and 2008. The other schools are: UCLA (11), Kentucky (8), Indiana (5), North Carolina (5), Duke (4), Connecticut (4) and Louisville (3).
• Kansas has appeared in the Final Four 14 times, making KU one of just seven schools to reach the Final Four 10-plus times: North Carolina (18), UCLA (17), Kentucky (17), Duke (16), Kansas (14), Ohio State (11) and Louisville (10).
• Kansas has won 12 games in the Final Four, which is tied for fifth best all-time: UCLA (25), Kentucky (20), Duke (17), North Carolina (15) and Indiana (12).
• Five different Jayhawks have been named NCAA Championship Most Outstanding Player, including B.H. Born in 1953 and Wilt Chamberlain in 1957, who both won the award even though KU lost in the title game. Clyde Lovellette (1952) and Danny Manning (1988) also won the honor. Mario Chalmers won the Most Outstanding Player Award for the 2008 NCAA Championship.
• Former Jayhawk player and coach Dick Harp is the only person to play in the Final Four and later coach his alma mater in the Final Four.
• In 2007-08, Kansas became the fourth school to win a BCS game, and then play in the Final Four the same academic year. The 2007 KU football team won the FedEx Orange Bowl and the men’s basketball team captured the NCAA National Championship. Other schools to accomplish the feat include Ohio State (1999), Wisconsin (2000) and Florida (2007).
• In 1993, Kansas became the first school in NCAA history to make a Final Four appearance, a College World Series appearance and win a bowl game in the same year.
• Larry Brown is one of two coaches to take two different teams to the NCAA championship game (UCLA, 1980 and Kansas, 1988). Frank McGuire took St. John’s in 1952 and North Carolina in 1957. McGuire’s 1957 North Carolina team defeated Kansas for the championship in triple overtime.
• Brown is the only man to coach teams to the NCAA Championship (Kansas in 1988) and the NBA Championship (Detroit in 2004).
• When Phog Allen’s 1952 team won the NCAA title, Allen was 66 years old. That was the oldest age for the head coach of a championship team until Jim Calhoun (68) of Connecticut won in 2011. Allen became the fourth coach to win the NCAA National Championship at his alma mater, a feat that has been accomplished 14 times.
• Kansas won the NCAA Tournament in 1988 as a No. 6 seed. Jim Valvano‘s 1983 N.C. State team also won the tournament as a No. 6 seed. Only two other teams has won the tournament with a lower seed – Villanova in 1985 as an eighth seed and Connecticut as a No. 7 seed in 2014. In the 1990s, the lowest seed to win the tournament was the 1997 Arizona team, which captured the title as a No. 4 seed. The Wildcats upset Kansas, the top seed, in the Sweet 16.
CRADLE OF TOURNAMENT COACHING LEGENDS
With Jerod Haase leading UAB to the 2015 NCAA Championship, there are 11 head coaches who have advanced to the NCAA Championship that graduated from the University of Kansas. In fact, the 125 combined NCAA Tournament wins by those men are easily the most by graduates of any one school: Phog Allen (KU 1906, 10-3), Tad Boyle (KU 1985, 1-4), Tim Carter (KU 1979, 0-2), Frosty Cox (KU 1930, 2-4), Jerod Haase (1-1), Dick Harp (KU 1940, 4-2), Danny Manning (KU 1991, 0-1), Ralph Miller (KU 1942, 5-11), Adolph Rupp (KU 1922, 30-18), Dean Smith (KU 1953, 65-27) and Mark Turgeon (KU 1987, 7-7).
• Kansas was the only team in the Big 12 with an undefeated league record at home (9-0) in 2015-16.
• Kansas’ 81.9 scoring average is the best in the Bill Self era (81.6 in 2009-10) which is the highest since a 90.9 scoring average in 2001-02.
• Out of its 33 victories this season, Kansas has won by 10 or more points in 21 of those wins, including six of the last eight games. Six KU wins have been by 30 points or more, including 86-56 at Texas (2/29).
• KU has out-shot 32 of 37 opponents, including each of their last 16 opponents.
• Kansas has shot 50 percent or better in seven of its last 11 games and 18 times overall this season.
• The Jayhawks have out-rebounded 27 of 37 foes, including 13 of the last 18 contests. KU had its third 20 rebound advantage against Connecticut (44-24) on March 19.
• Kansas has shot 40 percent or better from 3-point range in 23 of its 37 games, including five of the last 10 contests.
• The KU bench has outscored its opponents’ bench in 23 of 37 games this season and is 22-1 in those contests. KU’s bench outscored Austin Peay’s bench 45-19 in its NCAA opening round (3/17). With it being Senior Day, KU’s bench outscored Iowa State’s bench 46-10 on March 5.
• KU has made seven or more 3-pointers in 26 of 37 games this season. KU has made 10 or more 3-pointers 11 times, including 15 threes vs. No. Colorado (11/13) and Chaminade (11/23), which were one off the school record.
• When guards Frank Mason III, Wayne Selden Jr. and Devonte’ Graham each score 10-plus points in the same game, KU is 13-0, including 7-0 in Big 12 play.
The Ellis-Mason-Selden-Graham combination is carrying the load for Kansas. All average 29-plus minutes per game and 10-plus points per game. KU’s next closest player is 17.2 minutes per game (Landen Lucas) and 5.7 points per game (Svi Mykhailiuk). The group of four combines for 37 35-plus minute games this season, while the rest of the team has none.
QUITE THE COMPARISON
In Kansas’ 33 victories this season, the Jayhawks have won by an average of 17.6 points per game. In its four losses, KU lost by 12.2 points per game. Here is a breakdown of statistics when the Jayhawks win compared to when they lose.
COMPARING WINNING STREAKS
Kansas has posted two winning streaks of 13 or more in 2015-16. KU’s current 15-game winning streak, which started Jan. 30, is the 14th time in the Bill Self era that the Jayhawks have won 10 or more straight games. The 13-game streak earlier this season included three ranked teams and three Big 12 foes, while the current 15-game streak includes seven ranked opponents and 13 conference opponents.
IN THE POLLS
In the most recent national rankings released on March 14, Kansas is No. 1 both the Associated Press Top 25 and USA Today Coaches’ Poll. Kansas holds the longest active streak for consecutive weeks in the AP Top 25 (141) after Duke fell out of the poll for the first time in eight seasons, ending a 167-week streak, on Feb. 1.
KU has spent six weeks ranked No. 1 in the AP poll (Jan. 4, Jan. 11, Feb. 29, March 1, March 7, March 14) and five weeks at No. 1 in the Coaches’ poll (Jan. 11, Feb. 29, March 1, March 7, March 14). On Jan. 11, Kansas was ranked No. 1 in both national polls for the first time since Feb. 14, 2011.
The last time Kansas was not ranked by the AP was during the 2008-09 season. Under coach Bill Self, Kansas has been ranked in the AP Top 25 for 224 weeks, which includes 162 weeks in the Top 10, 94 times in the Top 5 and 24 times at No. 1. In the coaches’ poll, under Self, Kansas has been ranked 237 times with 175 in the top 10 and 108 in the top five.
• Senior F Perry Ellis is only the 13th Jayhawk to reach the 1,600 point plateau, reaching the milestone at Kansas State (2/20). Ellis has 1,794 career points, which is eighth on the KU career scoring list. Earlier this season, Ellis became the 13th player in KU history to reach 800 career rebounds, currently 12th at 829. Ellis is the sixth player in KU history to rank in the top 13 in both career points and career rebounds: Danny Manning (2,951 points/1,187 rebounds), Nick Collison (2,097 points/1,143 rebounds), Raef LaFrentz (2,066 points/1,186 rebounds), Clyde Lovellette (1,979 points/839 rebounds) and Dave Robisch (1,754 points/815 rebounds).
• Junior G Wayne Selden Jr., had 33 points against Kentucky (1/30) and in the process became the 57th Jayhawk to reach the 1,000-point plateau. He is 37th on the KU scoring list at 1,186 points and ranks 10th on the KU career 3-pointers made list at 162) and tied for eighth on the 3-pointers attempted list at 437 (Adonis Jordan, 1990-93).
• Junior G Frank Mason III surpassed the 1,000 points mark at Kansas State (2/20) and is the 58th Jayhawk to accomplish the feat. He is 43rd at 1,116 career points. Mason ranks 16th on the KU career assists list, currently at 385.
THREE 1,000-POINT SCORERS
When junior G Frank Mason III surpassed the 1,000-points plateau, currently at 1,116, he joined teammates Perry Ellis (1,794) and Wayne Selden Jr. (1,186) who have also reached the milestone. Historically, this is only the sixth time in KU history there have been three or more 1,000-point scorers on the same floor and the first since 2004-05. Kansas and Oklahoma are the only two Big 12 schools that have three active players with 1,000 points or more. OU has senior Buddy Hield, senior Isaiah Cousins and junior Jordan Woodard.
KANSAS vs. RANKED TEAMS
With its 79-63 win against No. 18/17 Maryland (3/24), Kansas improved to 12-3 against nationally-ranked opponents in 2015-16, including 4-0 versus top-10 foes. The 12 wins is a new high in a season for Kansas, surpassing the 10 set last year. In the Bill Self era, Kansas is 76-37 against ranked opponents and has had a winning record against ranked foes each of the last 11 seasons. In 2014-15 KU played an all-time high 16 games vs. ranked foes.
Kansas is making 42.2 percent from 3-point range. At their current percentage pace, the 2015-16 Jayhawks would finish second on the school’s single-season 3-point field goal percentage list. Additionally, Kansas’ 298 3-pointers made this season are the most in school history for a season ranking passing the 271 in 2010-11.
In Bill Self’s previous 12 seasons at Kansas, the Jayhawks have led the Big 12 in field goal percentage defense eight times and finished no lower than fourth. Nationally, Self-coached Jayhawks have ranked eighth or higher in all but two seasons in field goal percentage defense and have ranked in the top five on eight occasions, including first in 2005-06 and 2011-12.
Including the 2015-16 title, Kansas has won 16 of the 20 Big 12 regular-season championship (includes ties), including the last 12, which ranks second on the NCAA all-time consecutive list. Kansas’ 59 conference titles are the most in NCAA Division I. Kentucky is second with 52 and Penn third at 37. KU’s 12-straight league titles are the longest active streak in NCAA Division I and the longest streak in school history.
BIG 12 RUN NO CAKEWALK
Kansas currently ranks No. 1 in the NCAA Rating Percentage Index (RPI), through games of March 6 and its strength of schedule is sixth nationally. KU ended 2014-15 ranked No. 5 in the RPI and No. 1 in strength of schedule. Following the 2013-14 season, for the second time in the Bill Self era, Kansas ranked first in strength of schedule, according to data from RPIratings.com. KU was also tops in Self’s second season, 2004-05. Prior to 2015-16, in Self’s 12 seasons, KU has ranked fifth or higher in the final RPI eight times, including each of the last six years. Kansas was fourth in the final RPI in 2013-14, its highest since 2010-11 when it ranked first.
A Kansas victory March 26 would have the Jayhawks advance to their 15th Final Four April 2 and 4 in Houston.
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