Dec 30, 2013, 11:18 PM EDT
Naadir Tharpe finished with 20 points and eight assists, hitting 7-for-8 from the floor and 4-for-5 from three, as No. 16 Kansas held off a scrappy Toledo squad 93-83.
The Jayhawks put together one of the most brutal non-conference schedules in the country this season, one that still features a visit for San Diego State. But after tough road losses to Colorado and Florida — which came on the heels of a disappointing trip out to the Battle 4 Atlantis — the Jayhawks seem to have righted the ship. Their last three games have all been double-digit wins over potential tournament teams in New Mexico, Georgetown and Toledo. And while those wins being spread out over the course of 16 days, the Jayhawks look like they have embraced the opportunity to spend some time in the practice gym improving.
Kansas has as much talent on their roster as anyone in the country. With the continuous improvement of Joel Embiid and Andrew Wiggins, and the solid play of Perry Ellis convincing Bill Self to run his offense from the inside-out, Kansas looks every-bit the part of a team that can win the national title.
Most important of all, however, has been the play of Naadir Tharpe of late. Over the course of those last three wins, he’s averaging 12.7 points and 7.0 assists while shooting 63.6% from the floor and 7-for-12 from three. He’s the key to Kansas going from a good team to a scary-good team.
But we all know about the Jayhawks and how good they can be.
I don’t want to focus on that.
I want to talk a bit about Toledo.
Monday night was the first loss of the season for the Rockets. They entered the game 12-0 with a couple of decent wins over the likes of Boston College, Stony Brook and Cleveland State, but Kansas was their first real test. And despite playing on the road, and despite the Jayhawks actually playing pretty well, Toledo would never go away. Every time it felt like Kansas was getting ready to make a run and turn this thing into a blowout, Toledo had an answer, whether it was a triple or a couple of quick buckets in a row.
This is a good basketball team, especially on the offensive end of the floor. They don’t defend well enough to truly be a threat at earning an at-large bid, but any power conference team that draws this club in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament — assuming they are able to make it that far — is going to be in for a dogfight.
Jul 11, 2014, 12:00 PM EDT
We discussed some of the nation’s top prospects with the coaches that are scouting them.
Jul 11, 2014, 11:00 AM EDT
Thomas Bryant and Ted Kapita, who will be teammates at Huntington Prep next season, were a handful due to their activity and willingness to work hard on both ends of the floor.
Jul 11, 2014, 10:00 AM EDT
The adidas Unrivaled camp tipped off in Chicago on Thursday and a lot of talented players were in the building.
Jul 11, 2014, 9:10 AM EDT
Tyree goes to the same school that Karl Towns attended.
Jul 11, 2014, 12:09 AM EDT
Jeantal Cylla, Mike Watkins and Perry Dozier also impressed.
Jul 10, 2014, 8:00 PM EDT
After posting improved numbers in 2013-14, the rising senior guard is looking to make strides as a leader to help account for the loss of James Bell.
Jul 10, 2014, 6:51 PM EDT
The five-star forward is working hard to make sure he can play both inside and out at the college level.
Jul 10, 2014, 5:28 PM EDT
The redshirt senior guard has led the way this summer for Auburn, which is looking to turn things around under Bruce Pearl.
Jul 10, 2014, 1:15 PM EDT
Barksdale is the fifth Hokie to leave this offseason
Jul 10, 2014, 12:37 PM EDT
Stone has dropped 17 pounds and streamlined his body.
Jul 10, 2014, 11:00 AM EDT
The Elite Academic Showcase helped usher in the July live evaluation period on Wednesday night.
Jul 10, 2014, 9:00 AM EDT
Wisconsin’s Sam Dekker and Kansas’ Kelly Oubre were two of the college standouts, and LeBron James even took the floor to play with the high school campers on Day 1.
Jul 9, 2014, 9:55 PM EDT
Derryck Thornton, Dwayne Bacon and Jawun Evans were Wednesday’s top performers.
Jul 9, 2014, 9:15 PM EDT
Having dropped some 45 pounds according to reports, the rising sophomore is looking to be a more consistent player in 2014-15.
Jul 9, 2014, 8:00 PM EDT
The reigning OVC tournament champions will play four games in Australia.
Jul 9, 2014, 7:15 PM EDT
Sen. Claire McCaskill asked the president of the NCAA an attention-grabbing question during Wednesday’s hearing.
Jul 9, 2014, 5:56 PM EDT
Paul Lee will remain in Poughkeepsie for his seventh season, with Andy Johnston joining the Marist program.
Jul 9, 2014, 5:00 PM EDT
The MVC tournament extends their deal with St. Louis
Jul 9, 2014, 3:54 PM EDT
One has academic issues, one needs … a visa?
Jul 9, 2014, 2:25 PM EDT
Tharpe is likely headed to the D-League
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