Archive for Monday, November 26, 2007

Rush to the rescue

Long bomb misses, but Jayhawks shine in overtime

Kansas University's Darrell Arthur, center, lets out a scream as the Jayhawks pulled away from Arizona. At left is UA's Jerryd Bayless, while Chase Budinger is at right. Arthur led KU with 20 points in a 76-72 overtime victory Sunday at Allen Fieldhouse. Bayless and Budinger combined for 46 points.

Kansas University's Darrell Arthur, center, lets out a scream as the Jayhawks pulled away from Arizona. At left is UA's Jerryd Bayless, while Chase Budinger is at right. Arthur led KU with 20 points in a 76-72 overtime victory Sunday at Allen Fieldhouse. Bayless and Budinger combined for 46 points.

November 26, 2007

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Hawks survive OT scare, 76-72

Amidst all the Border Showdown hype, the Kansas basketball team was at home tonight with the always dangerous Arizona Wildcats. Enlarge video

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2007-08 Nov. 25 KU-Arizona Basketball

Like most all college basketball players, Kansas University's Brandon Rush tries to hit a halfcourt shot at practice now and then.

"I've thrown in a few like that, not in a game, especially tied going into overtime," said Rush, whose 55-foot shot - that's eight feet behind the midcourt line - kissed softly off the glass and the rim and darn near dropped through the hoop at the final horn of Sunday night's nonconference thriller against Arizona at Allen Fieldhouse.

"I thought it was going in. I was praying it was going to drop right in there. It would have made my year. It would have been the highlight of my year."

Instead, Rush and the No. 4-ranked Jayhawks, who were tied with the unranked Wildcats 62-62 after 40 minutes, had to gut it out five extra minutes to earn a 76-72 overtime victory.

"I thought it had a chance," KU coach Bill Self said of Rush's beyond-halfcourt missile. "Usually when you throw 'em in like that and hit the glass from that far a distance, they usually come off hard, but it was close.

"I'm glad it didn't go in," Self added, "because we needed to play five more competitive minutes like that to kind of execute with the pressure on."

Rush - amazingly he scored 17 points, grabbed eight rebounds and took his turn on Chase Budinger (27 points, six rebounds, five turnovers) while playing a season-high 36 minutes - excelled in the extra session.

He had a steal and breakaway slam and on the ensuing possession caught an alley-oop pass from Russell Robinson for a slam that gave KU a 73-65 lead with 1:36 left in OT.

Earlier, Darrell Arthur hit from 12 feet, then put back a Mario Chalmers miss to open the 8-0 run that busted a 65-all tie.

"It felt good, especially the alley oop," said Rush, who proved he can go high to dunk in his remarkable comeback from June 1 ACL surgery. "I got up on a few of those. The only time I was tired was running around screens. The screens were killing me, and he (Budinger) was getting open and hitting every shot."

Rodrick Stewart (13 points, six rebounds) also guarded Budinger much of the game.

"I'll be honest. He's good, real good," said Stewart, whose driving basket and foul shot opened overtime on a good note for KU.

Budinger finally fouled out with :28.6 seconds left in overtime, sending Rush to the line where he hit one of two free throws to give the Jayhawks a 74-70 lead. Jawann McClellan missed a 3 at :17. Russell Robinson was fouled and hit two free throws at :12 to ice the victory.

McClellan, who Rush knows personally, had six points on a night Budinger and Jerryd Bayless (19 points, seven turnovers) provided most of the Arizona offense.

It was such a tight game - Arizona trailed by as many as 11 the first half and led by four the second - Rush and McClellan joked before the overtime jump ball.

"I guess before the end of the game (regulation), he said, 'Don't make a miracle,''' Rush said. "I told him, 'One almost came through.'

"It's probably good we had overtime. We needed a grind-it-out win."

Self explained his decision to use Rush so much.

"Our game plan was to play him 20 (minutes). Our medical staff kept checking him. When Tyrel (Reed, ankle sprain end of first half) went down and Russell picked up the two foolish fouls to end the half to give him three and then Rod (Stewart) got a touch foul to give him three, we didn't have any bodies.

"I know one thing, (Rush) is getting the day off tomorrow. They all are."

It's not just a reward. Self wasn't pleased with KU's play in much of the game. The Jayhawks were outrebounded 38-29.

"I think it's a toughness thing," Self said. "We need to get Sasha (Kaun, two boards) going. He's just not reacting to the ball. He's got to rebound it. Russell probably had as bad a night tonight as he has had since he was a freshman. He didn't have any games like that the last two years.

"It was one of those nights we were fortunate to win because we didn't play the way we felt we should play and are capable of playing. Rod was really good, Mario (Chalmers, 14 points, seven assists) made some big free throws (four of six) and competed hard, and I thought Brandon, to play that well considering what he's been through, was remarkable."

KU next will meet ex-Jayhawk Rex Walters' Florida Atlantic University team at 7 p.m. Wednesday at Allen.

Go figure

27

Points by UA's Chase Budinger (on 10-of-23 shooting)

30

Points scored by Arizona off 3-pointers

6

Points scored by Kansas off 3-pointers

9

Arizona's rebounding edge (38 to 29)

5-for-6

KU's field-goal shooting in overtime

4-for-5

KU's free-throw shooting in OT

4-for-8

Arizona's field-goal shooting in overtime

1-for-2

UA's free-throw shooting in OT

Comments

jonas 7 years, 8 months ago

It was over when Budinger fouled Rush and got his fifth. It was kind of a stupid, anti-climactic end to the game. Best shooter gone on a useless foul.

JJHawq 7 years, 8 months ago

Bad coaching at the end by Zona - they waited 10 seconds to foul - and the ONLY guy who the didn't want to pick up the foul was Budinger.

Probably didn't matter, but it could have!

nobody1793 7 years, 8 months ago

Quote "I thought it was going in. I was praying it was going to drop right in there. It would have made my year. It would have been the highlight of my year."

I guess B-Rush ain't planning on getting to a final four...

Confrontation 7 years, 8 months ago

nobody1793 (Anonymous) says:

Quote "I thought it was going in. I was praying it was going to drop right in there. It would have made my year. It would have been the highlight of my year."

"I guess B-Rush ain't planning on getting to a final four:"

**I don't know about your year, but my year ends on 12-31-07. How does the Final Four in 2008 have anything to do with this year?

BorderRat 7 years, 8 months ago

I got ill hearing the TV guys and their Budinger this, Budinger that, is Kansas going to lose to another Chase, yada, yada, yada. I'll admit, he's a good player but he had little or no supporting cast last night. Even when I lived in Arizona I couldn't support Lute and his "I recruit them to stay 2 years attitude."

jonas 7 years, 8 months ago

"Yeah, but after his 5th foul, he found himself sitting on an angry chair."

When he blocks the ball, then, is it a godsmack?

BigAl 7 years, 8 months ago

Pilgrim (Anonymous) says:

That headline gave the looney left of Lawrence a heart attack.


What does this mean? How far right are you?

jonas 7 years, 8 months ago

"What does this mean?"

Like most silly platitudes from the people who would use the term looney left, it means very little.

Ubermime: The center was really pounding the paint. He was definitely the Man In The Box!

Man, that was so bad. I'm almost ashamed.

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