No. 3/2 Kansas and No. 1/1 Duke meet Tuesday in State Farm Champions Classic
Notes Game Notes (.pdf)
No. 7/8 Kansas, 12-time defending Big 12 regular-season champions, faces No. 1/1 Duke (2-0) in the State Farm Champions Classic Tuesday night at 8 p.m. (Central) at historic Madison Square Garden in New York City on ESPN.
Kansas is facing its first No. 1 foe since the Jayhawks defeated USA Today Coaches Poll No. 1 Oklahoma, 109-106, in triple overtime on Jan. 4, 2016, in Allen Fieldhouse. Kansas is facing an Associated Press No. 1 team for the 24th time in school history and the first time since the 2014 Champions Classic where it fell to Kentucky, 72-40, in Indianapolis. Kansas is 7-16 all-time versus the Associated Press No. 1, including 2-2 under head coach Bill Self.
KANSAS-DUKE QUICK HITS
• Kansas and Duke are two of only four NCAA Division I men’s basketball programs with 2,000-plus all-time victories: Kentucky (2,205), KANSAS (2,186), North Carolina (2,177) and Duke (2,087).
• Dating back to 1990, Kansas’ 27 current consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances is the nation’s longest active streak, and is tied for the NCAA record. Duke is next with 21.
• KU has five national championships, including three NCAA titles, while Duke has four NCAA championships.
• Kansas ranks fourth in all-time NCAA Tournament games played at 144. Duke is fifth at 141.
• Kansas and Duke have met 10 times, including eight on neutral floors and five in the NCAA Tournament. Three of those five were in a Final Four (1986, 1988, 1991). Duke defeated Kansas, 72-65, in the 1991 NCAA Tournament title game.
Kansas opened up the 2016-17 regular season with a 103-99 loss to No. 11/12 Indiana on Nov. 11, in the State Farm Armed Forces Classic in Honolulu. The loss ended a KU 14-game season-opening winning streak and was the first season-opening loss under head coach Bill Self.
Senior G Frank Mason III led Kansas with a career-high 30 points against Indiana. He is one of three returning starters for the Jayhawks along with junior G Devonte’ Graham and senior C Landen Lucas. Graham had 16 points in the opener, while Lucas tied Mason for the team lead with seven rebounds and scored 11 points. Sophomore F Carlton Bragg Jr. had 12 points on 6-of-7 shooting and freshman G Josh Jackson added nine points to round out the KU starters.
Junior G Sviatoslav Mykhailiuk had 12 points against Indiana, which included two 3-pointers. He also had two steals as did Lucas and sophomore G Lagerald Vick. Vick scored seven points in the opener. Freshman C Udoka Azubuike added two rebounds and one blocked shot to round out the KU regulars against Indiana.
Last season Kansas 33-5 team which went 15-3 in Big 12 play, winning its unprecedented 12th-straight, 16th Big 12 and NCAA-leading 59th overall conference regular-season championships. KU also won the 2015 Maui Invitational and 2016 Big 12 Championship titles and was the overall No. 1 seed for the NCAA Tournament where it advanced to the Elite Eight. Additionally, Kansas head coach Bill Self was named the national coach of the year for the third time in his career reaping Associated Press (AP) and National Association of Basketball Coaches accolades in 2015-16. Self was also the 2016 Big 12 Coach of the Year by the AP, earning the conference honor for the seventh time.
All three returning starters earned All-Big 12 recognition last season with Mason garnering All-Big 12 Second Team honors for the second-straight season. Graham and Lucas were all-conference honorable mention in 2015-16. Mason and Graham were also named to the five-person the Big 12 All-Defensive Team.
Mason is Kansas’ leading returning scorer at 12.9 points per game, which ranked 12th in the Big 12 and is the second-highest returning scorer in the league for 2016-17. He led KU in assists at 4.6, which was fourth in the conference. Graham averaged 11.3 points per game and was the team leader in steals with 1.4 per contest. Lucas, who scored 5.8 points per game, started 19 of KU’s final 20 games and led the Jayhawks in rebounds at 6.8 per outing, which was seventh in the conference and is the second leading returner in the league for this year.
Junior F Dwight Coleby will also add depth to the inside. Coleby sat out last year after transferring from Ole Miss. He averaged 5.4 points and 4.8 rebounds per game his sophomore for the Rebels in 2014-15.
Led by Jackson, the 2016 No. 1 overall recruit nationally by many recruiting services, Kansas’ newcomers rank as one of the highest recruiting classes in the nation entering 2016-17. Joining Jackson in the rookie class are Azubuike and forward Mitch Lightfoot.
Jackson is the third overall No. 1 recruit to play at Kansas since 2010-11, joining Josh Selby (2010-11) and Andrew Wiggins (2013-14). Jackson and Azubuike were McDonald’s All-Americans last season as Azubuike was ranked No. 22 in the final ESPN100 rankings. Look for both to contribute immediately, while Lightfoot, the 2016 Arizona Gatorade Player of the Year, will also be a spark in the big man rotation.
Located in Durham, North Carolina, with an enrollment of 6,504, No. 1 Duke is 2-0 on the season after defeating Grand Canyon, 96-61,Saturday, Nov. 12. The Blue Devils are coached by Naismith Hall of Famer Mike Krzyzewski who is 972-262 in his 37th season at Duke and 1,045-321 in his 42nd season overall. Duke dominated its first two opponents, averaging 95 points and posting a 40.0 average scoring margin. Duke uses a solid defense allowing a 32.2 percent field goal defense percentage and forcing 17.5 turnovers per game. The Blue Devils also average 16.5 assists, 11.5 steals and 7.5 blocked shots per contest.
Junior G Grayson Allen leads Duke in scoring at 20.5 points per game and he is tied for second on the team with a 7.0 rebound average. He has made a team-best six 3-pointers through two games. Off the bench, freshman G Frank Jackson is second in scoring at 19.5 points per game and he is second on the team with five 3-pointers made. Sophomore G Luke Kennard is a starter who averages 15.0 points per game and is tied with Allen at 7.0 rebounds per game. He has a team-best eight assists. Senior G Matt Jones has a team high six steals to complement his 11.0 scoring average, while senior F Amile Jefferson leads the team with 8.0 rebounds per contest to go along with his 10.0 scoring average. Jefferson also has a team-best eight blocked shots. Sophomore F/C Chase Jeter (7.0 ppg, 5.0 rpg, five blocked shots) rounds out the Duke starters. Other Duke regulars include freshman F Javin DeLaurier (4.0 ppg, 4.5 rpg), freshman F Jack White (4.0 ppg) and sophomore C Antonio Vrankovic (3.5 ppg, 6.0 rpg).
Although it only started in 1985, Kansas and Duke have shared a high-stakes series. Duke leads, 7-3, but Kansas has won two of the last three meetings, including the last match-up, a 94-83 win in the 2013 Champions Classic in Chicago. Eight of the 10 match-ups have been on neutral floors while five of the games have been NCAA Tournament battles, including three Final Fours and one NCAA title game. The first meeting came in the 1985 Preseason NIT championship game in Madison Square Garden, which Duke won 92-86. The same two teams met in Dallas in the Final Four semifinal later that season, a game which was the first-ever game between two 30-win teams. Duke won that contest, 71-67. In 1988, Duke traveled to Lawrence for a February non-conference game and came away with a 74-70 overtime victory in Allen Fieldhouse. Later that season the teams met again, this time in the Final Four semifinal, with Kansas defeating Duke, 66-59, at Kemper Arena in Kansas City, Missouri. The national title was on the line in the 1991 meeting, a Duke 72-65 win in Indianapolis. The Blue Devils ended the Jayhawks’ season in the second round of the 2000 NCAA Tournament in Winston Salem, North Carolina, while KU returned the favor in the 2003 Sweet 16 in Anaheim, California, en route to its Final Four run. Duke won the 2011 Maui Invitational title defeating KU, 68-61, in the championship game.
A KANSAS WIN WOULD …
Make Kansas 1-1 for the seventh time in the Bill Self era … Improve Kansas to 2-4 in the Champions Classic with both wins against Duke … Give Kansas its second-straight win against Duke and make the all-time series 7-4 in favor of Duke … Make Kansas 8-16 all-time against Associated Press No. 1 teams, including 3-2 under Bill Self … Make Kansas 72-39 against ranked teams in the Bill Self era … Improve Self to 386-84 at Kansas, 593-189 overall and 2-3 against Duke … Make KU 2,187-837 all-time.
A KANSAS LOSS WOULD …
Make Kansas 0-2 for the first time since the 1972-73 season … Make Kansas 1-5 in the Champions Classic … Make the KU-Duke series 8-3 in favor of Duke … Make Kansas 7-17 all-time against No. 1 teams, including 2-3 under Bill Self … Make Kansas 71-40 against ranked foes in the Bill Self era … Make Self 385-86 while at KU, 592-190 overall and 1-4 against Duke … Make KU 2,186-838 all-time.
•Kansas’ string of 14-straight wins to open a season ended.
•Kansas fell to 66-57 all-time in overtime games, including 15-7 under Bill Self.
•Kansas shot 30-for-38 at the free throw line, already tying 2015-16’s season-high 30 free throws made against Kentucky (1/20/16) – also an overtime game.
•The contest featured 16 ties and 17 lead changes, surpassing KU’s 2015-16 season high of 13 ties in three overtimes against Oklahoma (Jan. 4, 2016).
• Senior G Frank Mason III‘s 30 points were a career high as were his 13 free throws made and 15 free throw attempts.
•Mason moved into 40th place on the KU career scoring list, currently at 1,162 points.
•Mason’s 30 points marked his fifth career game of scoring 20 or more points and his nine assists marked the 14th time in his career he has had seven or more assists.
• Senior C Landen Lucas and Mason led KU in rebounds with seven. It marked the 27th time Lucas has led KU on the boards and the second for Mason.
• Junior G Devonte’ Graham has now made multiple 3-pointers in 29 games for his career.
• Sophomore G Lagerald Vick tied his career high with seven points and set his career high in minutes played (28).
CHAMPIONS CLASSIC HISTORY
Beginning in 2011, the State Farm Champions Classic is a neutral site doubleheader series featuring men’s basketball powers Kansas, Duke, Kentucky and Michigan State. The inaugural Champions Classic was held at Madison Square Garden in 2011 followed by the Georgia Dome in 2012 and the United Center in Chicago in 2013. In November 2013, the Classic was extended through 2016.
Kansas is 1-4 in the Champions Classic, while the other three teams are 3-2. In 2011, Kansas and Kentucky’s Champions Classic meeting also became the matchup for the 2012 NCAA National Championship title game in New Orleans. The Wildcats defeated the Jayhawks, 75-65, in the Champions Classic. In 2012, KU fell to Michigan State in Atlanta, 67-64. KU won its first game in the Classic with a 94-83 win against Duke in Chicago in 2013. In 2014, No. 1 Kentucky defeated Kansas 72-40 in Indianapolis. Last year, Kansas lost to Michigan State, 79-73, in Chicago. KU will face Kentucky in Chicago in 2017, Michigan State in Indianapolis in 2018 and Duke in New York City in 2019.
Including 2015-16, Kansas has won 16 of the 20 Big 12 regular-season titles (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 53 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. UCLA, from 1967-79, holds the NCAA record of 13 straight, which was under two coaches. Kansas’ current run has been under head coach Bill Self.
KANSAS IS PRESEASON BIG 12 FAVORITE
For the 15th time in the 21-year history of the Big 12, Kansas men’s basketball has been selected as the preseason favorite to win the conference regular-season championship. Coaches were not allowed to vote for their own teams in the poll and KU received a unanimous nine first-place votes and a total of 81 points. West Virginia was second in the poll receiving 65 points, followed by Texas (59), Iowa State (56) and Baylor (53). Oklahoma was sixth with 40 points, while Oklahoma State and Texas Tech tied for seventh with 32 points. Kansas State (20) and TCU (12) rounded out the coaches’ preseason poll.
Historically, the preseason favorite has gone on to finish first in the regular season 13 times, which does not include 1996-97 as a coaches’ poll was not conducted. Kansas has been the preseason favorite in 12 of its 16 Big 12 regular-season titles, missing 1996-97 (no poll), 2005-06 (third) and 2010-11 (second).
JAYHAWKS EARN PRESEASON BIG 12 HONORS Kansas guards Frank Mason III, Devonte’ Graham and Josh Jackson each garnered recognition on the 2016-17 All-Big 12 Preseason Team as voted on by the league’s men’s basketball coaches.
Mason and Graham were on the five-member All-Big 12 Preseason Team, while Jackson is an honorable mention selection as the recipient of at least one vote by the league’s coaches who could not vote for their own student-athletes. Jackson was also voted as KU’s fourth-straight Big 12 Preseason Freshman of the Year.
Jackson is the fourth-straight Jayhawk to be named preseason freshman of the year joining Cheick Diallo last season, Cliff Alexander in 2014-15 and Andrew Wiggins in 2013-14. KU has had eight Big 12 Preseason Freshman of the Year selections starting with Nick Collison in 1999-2000.
TRIO NAMED TO NAISMITH WATCH LISTS
The Kansas trio of Frank Mason III, Devonte’ Graham and Carlton Bragg Jr. have been named candidates for three respected national honors the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.
Named one of 20 candidates, Mason is on the 2017 Bob Cousy Point Guard Award list and Graham was named to the 2017 Jerry West Shooting Guard of the Year Award list. Bragg is one of 20 candidates on the 2017 Karl Malone Power Forward of the Year Award, an honor Perry Ellis was a finalist for in both of the last two seasons.
FIFTEEN JAYHAWKS ON NBA OPENING DAY ROSTERS
A total of 15 Jayhawks were opening day rosters for the 2016-17 NBA regular-season which began Oct. 25.
Paul Pierce has the most tenure of the Jayhawks in the NBA, entering his 19th and final season of his hall-of-fame career. Pierce is in his second year with the Los Angeles Clippers. Oklahoma City’s Nick Collison, a member of KU’s 2002 and 2003 Final Four teams, is next entering his 14th season with the Thunder.
The Minnesota Timberwolves carry the most Jayhawks with Cole Aldrich, Brandon Rush and Andrew Wiggins. Aldrich, from Bloomington, Minnesota, returns home for his first season with the Timberwolves and his seventh season in an NBA uniform. He and Rush were members of Kansas’ 2008 NCAA National Championship team. Rush is also in his first year in Minnesota and his ninth in the league. He is one of four Jayhawks to have won both NCAA and NBA titles, as he was a member of the 2015 Golden State Warriors’ title team. Wiggins, the overall No. 1 NBA Draft selection in 2014, is entering his third season with Minnesota.
Also a member of the 2008 national champ Jayhawks is Darrell Arthur, who is in his eighth season in the NBA and fourth with Denver. Arthur missed 2011-12 due to injury.
Twins Marcus and Markieff Morris are entering their sixth year in the league. They have been separated as teammates for the past few seasons with Marcus on the Detroit Pistons, and Markieff with the Washington Wizards. Joining Markeiff on the Wizards is Kelly Oubre Jr., who is in his second season in the NBA.
Thomas Robinson (Los Angeles Lakers) and Jeff Withey (Utah Jazz) were part of KU’s NCAA runner-up team in 2012. The fifth overall NBA Draft selection in 2012, this will be Robinson’s first season with the Lakers as he joins fellow Jayhawk Tarik Black, who is in his third season with the franchise. Drafted in 2013, Withey begins his second year in a Jazz uniform and his third overall in the NBA.
Fourth-year player and No. 7 overall selection in the 2013 NBA Draft, Ben McLemore continues his career with the Sacramento Kings.
The No. 3 overall selection in the 2014 NBA Draft, Joel Embiid suffered through injuries his first two seasons but is now healthy for the Philadelphia 76ers.
Cheick Diallo is the youngest Jayhawk in the NBA as he begins his rookie season with the New Orleans Pelicans.
In Bill Self’s 13 seasons at Kansas, the Jayhawks have led the Big 12 in field goal percentage defense nine times and finished no lower than fourth. Nationally, Self-coached Jayhawks have ranked eighth or higher in all but four seasons in field goal percentage defense and have ranked in the top five on eight occasions, including first in 2005-06 and 2011-12.
BIG 12 RUN NO CAKEWALK
Kansas ended 2015-16 ranked No. 1 in the NCAA Rating Percentage Index (RPI) and its strength of schedule second nationally. In Self’s 13 seasons, KU has ranked fifth or higher in the final RPI nine times, including each of the last seven years.
KANSAS VS. RANKED TEAMS
In 2015-16, Kansas posted a season-high 12 wins against Associated Press Top 25 teams. The mark surpassed the previous season, 2014-15, of 10. In the Bill Self era, Kansas is 76-38 against ranked opponents and has only had one non-.500 record, that being his first in 2003-04. Each of the past two seasons, Kansas has played a season-high 16 games vs. ranked foes.
In 2015-16, Kansas made a season-record 304 3-pointers. The Jayhawks’ 41.8 percent from 3-point range tied for second best in school history.
SOME THINGS TO LOOK FOR IN 2016-17
• Bill Self is 206-9 in Allen Fieldhouse. Ted Owens was 206-47 from 1964-65 to 1982-83. When Self wins his first game in Allen Fieldhouse this season, he will be the winningest coach in Allen Fieldhouse history. (Self 206-9, Owens 206-47, Williams 201-17, Brown 71-5, Harp 51-29, Allen 9-2).
• Bill Self has 385 wins at KU (15 shy of 400), 592 overall (eight shy of 600). When he won his 500th, Self tied for the ninth fastest in NCAA history. Self has coached 780 games, which is how many it took Phog Allen to win his 600th. Self will most likely end up 10th or 11th fastest to 600.
•KU is 744-109 all-time in Allen Fieldhouse, approaching win No. 750 in the venue.
•Kansas has the nation’s longest active home court winning streak at 42 games entering 2016-17; 40 of those in Allen Fieldhouse.
•KU has sold out of 243-straight games in Allen Fieldhouse, approaching 250.
•Kansas has won 2,186 all-time games, approaching 2,200, which is second all-time in NCAA history. Kentucky is first at 2,205.
•With a 216-43 (83.4 percent) record since 2010, Kansas is the winningest program, by percentage, this decade: 1. KANSAS (216-43, 83.4%); 2. Kentucky (217-47, 82.2%); 3. Duke (210-47, 81.7%).
•Should Kansas advance to the 2017 NCAA Tournament it would be its 28th-consecutive NCAA tourney appearance. The current 27 straight is tied for the NCAA Tournament longest consecutive appearance streak with North Carolina (1975-2001).
• Junior G Devonte’ Graham ranks tied for fourth on the KU career 3-point field goal list (min. 200 attempts), currently at 43.5 percent. He is tied with Brandon Rush (2006-08). Milt Newton (1985, 1987-89) holds the record at 44.6, while Jeff Gueldner (19887-90) is second at 43.9.
• Senior G Frank Mason III ranks No. 40 in KU career scoring (1,162 points), and No. 16 in assists (398). Mason is the 11th player in KU history to rank that high in both points and assists.
•Mason has started 75-straight games, which ranks 10th on the KU career list.
THIS DATE IN KANSAS BASKETBALL HISTORY
Kansas is 6-3 all-time on Nov. 15
Nov. 15, 1989: Kansas opened up its second season under Roy Williams with a 109-83 victory over UAB in the first game of the Preseason NIT in Allen Fieldhouse. Senior Kevin Pritchard and junior Mike Maddox scored 22 and 21 points, respectively, in a game where the Jayhawks never trailed. Kansas went on to win the Preseason NIT by defeating St. John’s in Madison Square Garden, 66-57. The Jayhawks finished the 1989-90 season with a 30-5 overall record, including an 11-3 mark in Big Eight play, which tied for second. Despite being unranked at the beginning of the season, the Jayhawks finished the year No. 5 in all three national polls. The season ended with a trip to the NCAA Tournament, which began KU’s current streak of 22 consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances, the longest active streak in the country. The 1989-90 season will also be remembered for several notable games, including a 150-95 win over Kentucky and a 91-77 victory over defending-champion UNLV.
KU plays host to Siena in the regular-season home opener on Friday, Nov. 18, at 7 p.m., on Jayhawk Television Network/ESPN3. The KU-Siena matchup is a ‘host game’ for the CBE Hall of Fame Classic. Kansas will then have a short turnaround when it faces UAB in the bracket round of the CBE Hall of Fame Classic, Monday, Nov. 21, at 8:30 p.m. from Sprint Center in Kansas City, Missouri. The game will be televised on ESPN2. KU will either play Georgia or George Washington Nov. 22, in the event. The CBE Hall of Fame Classic consolation game will be at 6:30 p.m. on ESPN3 and the finals at 9 p.m. on ESPN2.
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