No. 1 Kansas to take on No. 17/16 Villanova in Saturday blockbuster
RS-Junior forward Dedric Lawson
|GM 9: vs. #17/16 Villanova|
|Allen Fieldhouse (16,300)|
LAWRENCE, Kan. – No. 1 Kansas (8-0) will host defending national champion No. 17/16 Villanova (8-3) in a 2018 Final Four rematch Saturday, Dec. 15 at Allen Fieldhouse. The Jayhawks and Wildcats, two of the top-three winningest programs over the last four seasons, will tip off on ESPN at 11 a.m. Dan Shulman (play-by-play), Jay Bilas (analyst) and Brooke Wisebrod (reporter) will call the action.
WATCH JAYHAWK GAMEDAY LIVE FROM ALLEN FIELDHOUSE
Jayhawk Gameday Live, a 30-minute pregame show and a 60-minute postgame show, will be live before KU’s match-up with Villanova starting at 10:30 a.m. (CT). Full postgame reaction and analysis will follow immediately after the game’s conclusion. The show will be available across the country on the ESPN app, as well as regionally on KMCI, Spectrum Sports, Midco Sports Network and Cox Cable. For more information on how to access Jayhawk Gameday Live as well as content from the Jayhawk Network, visit KUAthletics.com/JTV.
TEDDY BEAR TOSS SET FOR SATURDAY
Kansas Athletics will hold a Teddy Bear Toss at the Jayhawks’ men’s basketball game against Villanova at 11 a.m., Saturday, December 15 inside Allen Fieldhouse. Fans are encouraged to bring teddy bears, or any plush toys, to throw onto James Naismith Court during halftime. All of the teddy bears and plush toys will be collected and donated to Toys for Tots to be distributed to children in the local community. Preferred maximum height for the teddy bears is 24 inches. Click here for more information.
- This will mark the third time in the arena’s 63 years that KU will host the defending NCAA Champion at Allen Fieldhouse. KU fell to the 1962 champion Cincinnati, 64-49, on Dec. 16, 1962, and defeated the 1995 champion UCLA Bruins, 85-70, on Dec. 1, 1995.
- Kansas and Villanova are meeting for the eighth time in men’s basketball with the last meeting in the 2018 Final Four semifinals, a Villanova 95-79 win in San Antonio. Villanova has a 4-3 series advantage over KU.
- Kansas is looking to go 9-0 for the first time since the 2010-11 team opened the season 18-0. A 9-0 record would be the fifth in head coach Bill Self’s 16 seasons at KU (14-0 in 2004-05, 20-0 in 2007-08, 14-0 in 2009-10 and 18-0 in 2010-11).
- At 8-0, Kansas is one of nine teams in NCAA Division I still undefeated.
- Villanova is the third ranked team Kansas will face in 2018-19. The Jayhawks are 2-0 against ranked foes this season with wins versus then-No. 10 Michigan State and then-No. 5 Tennessee.
- Kansas is 46-3 in Allen Fieldhouse when it is the No. 1 team in the Associated Press poll, including 20-0 under Bill Self. The Jayhawks have won 38-straight in Allen Fieldhouse when ranked No. 1 dating back to the 1994-95 season.
- Kansas is the only team in the Big 12 with two players ranked in the top five in the league in scoring. Redshirt junior F Dedric Lawson is third at 19.1 ppg, while senior G Lagerald Vick is fifth at 16.3 ppg.
- With four double-doubles in his last five games and five-straight 20-point outings, Lawson is the only player in the Big 12 to average a double-double with 19.1 ppg and a conference-leading 10.6 rpg.
- Dedric Lawson has five double-doubles this season, which leads the Big 12 and is 15th nationally.
No. 1 Kansas is 8-0 for the first time since the 2010-11 team started the season 18-0. Through eight games, Kansas ranks in the top three in the Big 12 in scoring offense (second at 81.8), 3-point field goal percentage (third at 37.7), rebounding offense (third at 39.4) and steals (third at 7.6). KU has a +3.3 rebound margin and has outrebounded six of eight opponents this season. KU also averages 7.1 3-pointers made, 15.1 assists and 3.8 blocked shots per game.
Redshirt junior F Dedric Lawson has five-straight 20-point games with four of those being double-doubles. He leads Kansas with a 19.1 scoring average, which is third in the Big 12. With his 10.6 rebounds per game, which lead the conference, Lawson is the only player in the Big 12 to average a double-double. A two-time Big 12 Player of the Week (11/12, 11/26), who was the conference newcomer of the week Dec. 3, Lawson also leads KU with 23 assists.
Senior G Lagerald Vick is next in scoring at 16.3 points per game, which is fifth in the league. He leads the Big 12 in 3-point field goals made per game at 3.6 and 3-point field goal percentage at 55.8 percent. Vick is 29-of-48 (60.4 percent) from beyond the arc in his last seven outings. Vick is second on the team with 12 steals.
Junior C Udoka Azubuike left the Wofford (12/4) game with a sprained ankle and is out indefinitely. Azubuike scores 12.9 points per game and his 6.1 rebound average is 11th in the league. Freshman G Devon Dotson is a starter who leads KU with 14 steals and is second on the team with 20 assists. Dotson averages 11.0 points per game. Freshman G Quentin Grimes has started all eight games and is second on the team with 11 3-pointers made to complement his 8.3 scoring average. Grimes also has 20 assists this season.
Sophomore G Marcus Garrett has started the last two games and is averaging 8.5 points and 5.0 rebounds in the span. Included are three of his four 3-pointers made. Garrett is averaging 6.6 points and 3.1 rebounds for the year. Other KU regulars include redshirt sophomore G Charlie Moore (3.6 ppg, 11 assists, one start), redshirt sophomore G K.J. Lawson (3.0 ppg, 2.4 rpg), freshman F David McCormack (1.9 ppg, 2.0 rpg) and junior F Mitch Lightfoot (1.9 ppg, 2.0 rpg). Lightfoot is coming off a seven-point, six-rebound game against New Mexico State (12/8).
|REMAINING NCAA DI UNDEFEATED TEAMS|
|Furman||11-0||vs. UNC Willmington (12/15)|
|Michigan||10-0||vs. W. Michigan (12/15)|
|Nevada||10-0||vs. South Dakota St. (12/15)|
|Virginia||9-0||at South Carolina (12/19)|
|St. John’s||9-0||vs. Wagner (12/16)|
|Texas Tech||9-0||vs. Abilene Christian (12/15)|
|Buffalo||9-0||at So. Illinois (12/15)|
|Houston||9-0||vs. Saint Louis (12/16)|
|KANSAS||8-0||vs. Villanova (12/15)|
|Through games played on Dec. 12, 2018|
Located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, with an enrollment of 6,584, Villanova is 8-3 on the season after its 78-75 loss at Penn on Dec. 11. The Penn outcome ended a Villanova five-game winning streak. The Wildcats are the defending NCAA National Champions and are coached by Jay Wright who is 430-168 in his 18th season at Villanova and 552-253 in his 25th season overall.
Villanova averages 75.0 points per game and has a +9.0 scoring margin. The Wildcats pull down 36.9 rebounds per contest with a +5.4 rebound margin. The Wildcats attempt 29.5 3-pointers per game and make 10.1 treys. They also average 13.8 assists, 5.0 steals and 3.5 blocked shots per outing.
Redshirt senior G Phil Booth leads Villanova in scoring at 15.8 points per game. He also leads the team with 26 3-pointers made and 33 assists. Senior F Eric Paschall is next in scoring at 14.5 points per game and he is second on the team with a 5.7 rebound average. Paschall has made a team-high 39 free throws through 11 games. Sophomore G Collin Gillespie is a starter who leads the team with 12 steals. Gillespie is second on the team with 31 assists and scores 11.9 points per game. Freshman F Saddiq Bey (7.9 ppg, 4.6 rpg) and sophomore F Dhamir Cosby-Roundtree (6.6 ppg, team-high 7.5 rpg) round out the Villanova starters. Cosby-Roundtree also leads the team with 17 blocked shots.
Other Villanova regulars include senior G Joe Cremo (6.9 ppg, 2.0 rpg, 17 3FGs), sophomore F Jermaine Samuels (4.9 ppg, 4.6 rpg) and freshman F Cole Swider (4.3 ppg, 1.7 rpg).
This series dates back to 1968 and Villanova holds a 4-3 lead after last season’s 95-79 win in the Final Four semifinals in San Antonio, Texas. Villanova has won the last three meetings with the last two in the NCAA Tournament: last season and a 64-59 win in the NCAA South Regional final on March 26, 2016, in Louisville. The Wildcats also topped KU, 63-59, in the second round of the 2013 Battle 4 Atlantis in the Bahamas. 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.
On Nov. 27, 2017, these two basketball powers announced a two-game series starting this season. The Jayhawks and Wildcats will play Dec. 15, 2018, in Allen Fieldhouse in Lawrence, Kansas, and Dec. 21, 2019, at Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia.
A KANSAS WIN WOULD…
Make Kansas 9-0 for the first time since the 2010-11 season … Give Kansas its 39th-straight win in Allen Fieldhouse when ranked No. 1 by Associated Press … Tie the KU-Villanova series at 4-4 … Give Kansas its ninth-straight win in Allen Fieldhouse … Make KU 777-113 all-time in Allen Fieldhouse, including 239-13 under head coach Bill Self … Make Kansas 4-0 in the month of December for the ninth time in Bill Self’s 16 seasons at KU … Make Self 456-96 while at Kansas and 663-201 overall … Make Kansas 2,257-849 all-time.
A KANSAS LOSS WOULD…
Make Kansas 8-1, ending an eight-game winning streak … Give Villanova a 5-3 all-time series advantage and its fourth-straight win versus KU … End an eight-game win streak in Allen Fieldhouse … End a 38-game win streak in Allen Fieldhouse when Kansas was ranked No. 1 … Make KU 776-114 all-time in Allen Fieldhouse, including 238-14 under head coach Bill Self … Make Self 455-97 while at Kansas and 662-202 overall … Make Kansas 2,256-850 all-time.
LAST TIME OUT
Redshirt-junior Dedric Lawson accounted for 16 of the Jayhawks’ final 19 points to help No. 2 Kansas outlast the New Mexico State Aggies, 63-60, Dec. 8 inside Sprint Center at the Jayhawk Shootout. Kansas trailed by as many as seven points in the second half before Lawson closed strong and tallied his fifth double-double of the year.
The shots were not falling for the Jayhawks over the opening 20 minutes of action, who hit only 11 of their 32 tries from the field and posted a season-low 26 points in the first frame. The Aggies outscored the Jayhawks 26-14 over the final 16 minutes prior to the intermission. That run handed KU its fourth halftime deficit of the year, 28-26.
New Mexico State carried that momentum into the second half. Over a six-minute span early in the frame, the Aggies hit 8-of-9 shots, including a 4-of-4 mark from 3-point range, to help build a 51-44 advantage with just over 11 minutes remaining.
From that point forward though, it was all Lawson. The 6-9 forward kicked off a stretch that pulled his team back into the game, scoring 11-straight points and handing KU a 60-57 lead with a 3-pointer at the 3:23 mark. Kansas held off the upset-minded Aggies from there, holding NMSU to just one field goal in the final minutes.
NEW MEXICO STATE LEFTOVERS & NOTABLES
- The win made Kansas 8-0 for the first time since 2010-11.
- The Jayhawks’ 63 points were their fewest since a 74-60 loss to Oregon (3-25-17) in the regional final of the 2017 NCAA Tournament, a game also played at Sprint Center.
- The last time Kansas won a game scoring 63 points or fewer came in a 63-52 win over Baylor (3-13-15) in the semifinals of the 2015 Big 12 Championship.
- With its seven-point second-half deficit, Kansas has now trailed by seven points or more in six of its eight outings this season and has gone on to win each.
- Redshirt junior F Dedric Lawson scored 16 of the Jayhawks’ final 19 points, all coming in the final 10:41 of the second half.
- Lawson has eclipsed 20 points in all but two games this season.
- With his 10 rebounds, Lawson has led the Jayhawks in rebounding five times this season.
- Lawson recorded his league-leading fifth double-double of the season, and the 41st of his career.
- Senior G Lagerald Vick dished a season-best five assists, this after tallying a total of five helpers in his last four outings.
- Junior F Mitch Lightfoot tallied season-highs with seven points, six rebounds and 18 minutes. His previous highs were four, three and 13, respectively.
KANSAS AS NO. 1 IN ALLEN FIELDHOUSE
Kansas is 46-3 in Allen Fieldhouse when it is ranked No. 1 in the nation by the Associated Press. This includes at 20-0 record under Bill Self. The Jayhawks have won 38-straight in Allen Fieldhouse when ranked No. 1 dating back to the 1994-95 season. The last KU loss as a No. 1 team in Allen Fieldhouse was to Kansas State, 68-64, on Jan. 17, 1994.
|NO. 1 KANSAS AT ALLEN FIELDHOUSE|
Redshirt junior F Dedric Lawson leads the Big 12 with five double-doubles this season. Lawson entered the 2018-19 season with 36 double-doubles in his two seasons at Memphis. He had 17 as a freshman in 2015-16 and 19 as a sophomore in 2016-17.
Lawson’s 41 career double-doubles are third on the NCAA Division I active list. Lawson is the only non-senior on the NCAA Division I top-10 list.
|ACTIVE NCAA DI CAREER DOUBLE-DOUBLE LEADERS|
|1||James Thompson VI (E. Mich.)||110||61|
|2||Jordan Murphy (Minnesota)||108||53|
|t3||Dedric Lawson (Memphis/Kansas)||73||41|
|t3||Devontae Cacok (UNC-Willmington)||106||41|
|t5||Mike Daum (South Dakota State)||116||40|
|t5||John Konchar (Purdue Ft. Wayne)||112||40|
|Through games played on Dec. 12, 2018|
KANSAS VS TOP-25 TEAMS
With its wins over No. 5 Tennessee in the NIT title game on Nov. 23 and versus No. 10 Michigan State to open the season on Nov. 6, Kansas added to an impressive record against ranked teams during the Bill Self era. Under Self, Kansas is now 92-45 against AP-ranked opponents. In his first 15 seasons at KU, Self’s Jayhawks have collected four wins or more over top-25 ranked foes in 12 of those seasons, which includes a 37-16 record from 2014-present.
Kansas’ record against top-10 ranked opponents is even more impressive. KU is 18-4 against foes ranked inside the top-10 of the AP poll since 2013-14, including 4-1 in 2017-18. Last season, KU’s top-10 wins included Kentucky, West Virginia, Texas Tech and Duke. Since Bill Self’s first season, the Jayhawks are 13-3 against AP top-10 teams inside Allen Fieldhouse, which includes KU’s current streak of nine-straight home victories against top-10 foes.
|KU VS. AP TOP-25 TEAMS UNDER SELF|
VICK MAKES 3-POINT HISTORY
Kansas senior Lagerald Vick recently recorded one of the best five-game shooting stretches in program history. In five outings from Nov. 12 to Dec. 1, the Memphis product combined for a 28-of-43 clip from 3-point range, good for 65.1 percent in that span.
His 28 triples are the most in program history for a Jayhawk over a five-game span. Only one other Jayhawk in school history who has hit 25 or more threes over a five-game stretch. “Downtown” Terry Brown (1989-91) connected on 25 or more treys over a string of five outings on two occasions during the 1990-91 season.
Vick’s 65.1 percent shooting in that span has not been matched by another Jayhawk. The two closest are Brown and Sviatoslav Mykhailiuk. Over five games during the 2017-18 season, Mykhailiuk hit 22-of-41 3-point tries (53.7 percent) in the Jayhawks’ first five outings of conference play.
|MOST 3-POINTERS BY A JAYHAWK IN A FIVE-GAME SPAN|
Many talk about how tough the Kansas schedule is for 2018-19. One look at KU’s nonconference opponents shows that six foes were preseason selections in their respective league races, with an additional five picked for second-place finishes.
|KU’S NON-CON OPPONENTS IN PRESEASON LEAGUE POLLS|
|America East||Vermont (W, 86-68)||1st|
Marquette (W, 77-68)
|Big Ten||Michigan St. (W, 92-87)||1st|
Stanford (W, 90-84 ot)
Tennessee (W, 87-81 ot)
|Southern||Wofford (W, 72-47)||2nd|
|Sun Belt||Louisiana (W, 89-76)||2nd|
|WAC||New Mexico St. (W, 63-60)||1st|
|Preseason polls included both those from coaches and media panels|
KANSAS IN THE NATIONAL POLLS
Kansas men’s basketball returned to the top this week at No. 1 in both the Associated Press and the USA TODAY Coaches’ polls released on Dec. 10.
Kansas has been ranked in each of the last 186 AP polls dating back to Feb. 3, 2009, which is the longest active streak in NCAA Division I. For the third time in poll history Kansas entered the season ranked No. 1 by Associated Press (AP), as the AP released its poll Oct. 22. Three days later, Oct. 25, Kansas was once again picked No. 1 in the USA TODAY Coaches’ Poll.
This is the fifth-straight year the Jayhawks have opened the season in the top five of the coaches’ poll. The No. 1 ranking marked the ninth time KU has been preseason No. 3 or higher in the coaches’ poll. Additionally, it was the 13th time in the Bill Self era the Jayhawks have been preseason seventh or higher, including each of the last seven seasons.
Kansas will welcome the South Dakota Coyotes to Allen Fieldhouse on Tuesday, Dec. 18 for a 7 p.m. contest on Jayhawk TV and ESPN+. KU will then head to the southwest to take on the Arizona State Sun Devils on Dec. 22. Tip-off from Tempe is slated for 8 p.m. (CT) on ESPN2.
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