Jayhawks Bounce Back With Blowout

Coming off of their first loss in nearly nine months, Kansas was looking to get back on track against Texas Southern. Boy, did they ever. In a rematch of last year’s first round NCAA Tournament game, the Tigers were possibly looking to avenge that loss. They did not. In fact, they lost by even more than they did in the first meeting.

This game was all Jayhawks from the tip. After Texas Southern scored the first basket, KU quickly responded with a three pointer to take the lead. They wouldn’t relinquish the lead for the remaining 38 and a half minutes of the game.

The lead was 15 at halftime, and I assumed it would be another KU game where they get a comfortable lead and coast to a win that makes the box score looks like it was much closer than it actually was. That wasn’t the case, as Kansas took their frustrations out on the Tigers for nearly the full 40 minutes. They took their largest lead of the game (34) with less than two minutes left and would finish with a 32 point victory.

Kevin McCullar and Bobby Pettiford sat this one out, which allowed some younger players to get good minutes for the Jayhawks. The biggest showing was from freshman MJ Rice, who put up 19 points on 6-9 shooting after playing just 40 total minutes coming into the game. If he can emerge as a legit third scoring option, it will make life much easier on Jalen Wilson and Gradey Dick.

Speaking of which, those two were as steady as they have been all season, collecting 37 points, 11 rebounds, and seven assists between them. Dajuan Harris only scored five points on two shots, but he had nine assists to just one turnover. KJ Adams was pretty quiet, with 10 points and two rebounds, but wasn’t a negative on either end. Joseph Yesufu got the start in place of McCullar and he made the most of it, finishing with 14 points on just seven shots, while providing a spark to what has been a somewhat mundane offense so far this season.

Zuby Ejiofor and Ernest Udeh continue to sloooowly increase their minutes. They played 18 minutes combined, while Zach Clemence got 10 minutes of action. They will need at least one of those guys to emerge as a threat if they want to reach their potential, and Coach Self is trying to figure out which of the three it will be. Their next chance to see the floor will be on Thursday, as they play host to Seton Hall.

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