Nov 16, 2011, 2:10 AM EDT
Bill Self needed more than a lucky tie. Even Mario Chalmers might not have been enough.
Kansas’ coach wore the same tie for Tuesday’s game against No. 2 Kentucky that he wore when his Jayhawks faced John Calipari’s Memphis Tigers in the 2008 national title game. (It does look awfully similar to this tie.)
But it’s clear that Kentucky’s loaded roster – headed by the physical freak known as Anthony Davis – overwhelmed any residual luck that tie might’ve had from Mario’s miracle. A 75-65 win over the No. 12 Jayhawks showed as much.
“Their best offense for a long period of time was our offense,” Self said. “Our bad shots and turnovers led to run-outs and dunks and easy baskets that you’re going to have a hard time defending. So I really think that we helped them, but they were also a lot better in the second half than the first half.”
Not that Kansas should be embarrassed.
The Jayhawks don’t have nearly the talent Kentucky does – a mix of early NBA departures, recruiting misses and some bad luck with the NCAA clearinghouse accounts for that – and hung with the ‘Cats throughout the first half.
The second half was a different story, particularly when Davis (seven blocks) and that Kentucky defense got rolling and guys started hitting shots.
If there’s a Kansas consolation, it’s that the Maui Invitational next week offers a chance to build a little confidence. If it beats Georgetown on Nov. 21, it gets the UCLA-Chaminade winner. The Bruins have hit bottom, while Chaminade is usually the weakest team in the field.
And hey, there’s trophy the memories from when that lucky tie did work …
- Easy to see why Thomas Robinson’s so motivated
- Tyshawn Taylor’s not a bad kid, but a leader?
- Elijah Johnson is Kansas’ X-factor
You also can follow me on Twitter @MikeMillerNBC.
- Bracketology: Delaware, Manhattan, Wofford punch tickets 0
- 2014 SEC Tournament Preview: How will Kentucky, bubble teams fair? 0
- Joel Embiid out for Big 12 tournament, ‘longshot’ for NCAA tournament first weekend 1
- 2014 Big 12 Tournament Preview: This is going to be good 1
- 2014 Big East Tournament Preview: Can Villanova finally beat Creighton? 0
- College Basketball Talk’s Latest Top 25 4
- Bracketology: Florida in driver’s seat for overall No. 1 seed 5
- Wichita State will head into the NCAA tournament 34-0 as a No. 1 seed (12)
- No. 7 Syracuse falls to Georgia Tech in a shocking home loss (9)
- NBCSports.com’s 2014 College Basketball All-Americans (8)
- Assigned Reading: Dean Smith’s health continues to deteriorate (6)
- No. 1 Florida’s undefeated SEC season not just a by-product of their league (6)