Final, KU wins 69-45
Wearing blue throwback uniforms, Kansas University got back to its pre-Texas ways in thumping Colorado Saturday in Allen Fieldhouse, 69-45, in front of several KU hoops alumni in town to celebrate the program's 110th birthday.
Mario Chalmers led the way for KU with 13 points, including a three-of-five showing from three-point range. KU, which had been 4-of-26 from deep in the past two outings, went 8-of-19 Saturday from beyond the arc. Chalmers also had five assists, two blocks and two steals to his name.
Darnell Jackson was the only other Jayhawk to score in double figures for the Jayhawks (12 points), who were an efficient 25-of-54 from the floor. Sasha Kaun and Darrell Arthur each scored eight for KU, while Brandon Rush chipped in seven.
Colorado struggled offensively all day. Leading scorer Richard Roby, who netted 22 points against KU in the first meeting two weeks back, scored just two points on 1-of-11 shooting.
The Jayhawks now have a week off before taking on Oklahoma State in Stillwater, Okla., next Saturday at 3 p.m. For more on this game, including full postgame coverage, log back onto KUSports.com and pick up Sunday's Journal-World.
3:16, second half, KU leads 66-36
Darrell Arthur scored a pair and Sasha Kaun hit two free throws following a pair of Xavier Silas charities and a Levi Knutson three out of the timeout to keep KU ahead. At that point, Bill Self went a little deeper into the bench, putting Tyrel Reed into the game just inside the nine-minute mark.
Reed immediately grabbed a defensive rebound, then after the under-eight minute timeout cashed a three from the corner. It was his first trifecta since hitting two of them against Yale on Dec. 29.
Darnell Jackson continued KU's second half explosion with an and-one bucket coming off a spin move underneath. He hit the free throw to put KU ahead 60-29 with just under six minutes to play.
Cole Aldrich then got himself to the free throw line after grabbing a third in a series of tough defensive rebounds. Aldrich swished both looks, putting KU up by 33 points with 5:30 to play.
Xavier Silas hit a pair of bonus charities for Colorado, then Mario Chalmers did the same, giving Chalmers a game-high 13 points.
Cole Aldrich put the exclamation point on the victory with just under four minutes to play, throwing home an alley-oop toss from Brandon Rush just under the four-minute mark.
11:20, second half, KU leads 50-24
Sasha Kaun spun in a quick two after Colorado's Marcus Hall was called for traveling. The Buffs then had themselves another empty possession, and Mario Chalmers became the game's first player to get into double figures in the point column, cashing his third three-pointer of the game to push KU ahead 44-24.
Sherron Collins then fed Darrell Arthur for an alley-oop up high as KU continued to pull away, giving the sophomore forward four points. Arthur then fed Sasha Kaun down low for two while spinning away from the basket, drawing a foul in the process. The charity missed, as did Arthur's follow-up dunk attempt, but Colorado again couldn't answer, with Xavier Silas missing long on a three. On the other end, Darrell Arthur scored again, following up a KU miss with his third bucket of the game in close.
15:33, second half, KU leads 39-24
Richard Roby got to the free throw line to start the second half and missed both of his charity attempts, keeping CU's leading scorer without a point on the afternoon. Darrell Arthur then missed a baseline jumper for KU on hte other end. Roby drove the lane yet again and tried to open the second half scoring, but again drew nothing but iron.
Then, after Brandon Rush missed a three from the wing, he picked off a CU pass and fed Russell Robinson, who lobbed a toss up high for Darnell Jackson for a two-handed throwdown.
Cory Higgins scored CU's first points of the half with an up-and-under layup after a near-KU steal. Mario Chalmers answered with his second three-pointer of the game, giving him eight points on the afternoon and pushing KU's lead to 15 points.
Colorado signaled for a full timeout, and out of it Richard Roby slashed to the rim and finally dropped in his first points of the game. Darnell Jackson lost the ball on the way up for a dunk on the other end, but Russell Robinson defensively was able to draw a foul on Dwight Thorne. Mario Chlamers missed a three on the other end, but Brandon Rush tipped the loose ball in off the glass to give KU another 15-point advantage.
Halftime, KU leads 32-20
The Jayhawks and Buffs traded scoreless possessions out of the timeout, but Darnell Jackson finally cracked the code for the Jayhawks just inside the two-minute mark, muscling inside for his third field goal of the game to put KU ahead 30-18.
Sherron Collins extended the lead to 14 points, putting in two inside off the glass following a Cole Aldrich miss. Marcus Hall then scored in transition for the Buffs, and that would be the final tally of the half, with KU leading 32-20 at the break. Hall led all scorers in the first half with nine points.
Darnell Jackson led KU with seven points in the first half. KU was an efficient 12-of-24 from the floor, playing in Colorado's slowed down style. The Jayhawks were 4-of-9 from three-point range, with Brandon Rush, Mario Chalmers and Sherron Collins each turning in five points.
3:58, first half, KU leads 28-18
The defensive intensity stayed turned up on both ends out of the break, first with Sasha Kaun turning it over by stepping out of bounds against an expiring clock, then with Colorado failing to get a shot off in 35 seconds.
Kaun ended the drought with a tough two inside, but Marcus Hall then came down to spill in two for Cu, giving him a game-high seven points and keeping KU's lead to just five points at 23-18.
Hall couldn't connect on a three on his next trip down, and after KU picked Cory Higgins' pocket for the loose ball rebound, Sherron Collins took a kick-out from Rusell Robinson and hit a three from the wing. Richard Roby tried to respond with a three for CU but misfired, keeping him scoreless so far.
Mario Chalmers swatted a shot on the defensive end and then got himself to the line by drawing contact while driving on the offensive end. His two free throws gave KU its biggest lead yet at 28-18.
7:57, first half, KU leads 21-16
Cole Aldrich applied a nice move inside to score for KU right out of the timeout, but Levi Knutson answered back for Colorado, taking a KU defender off his feet with a pump fake and then hitting a pull-up jumper to make it a six-point game. Dwight Thorne missed a three for Colorado on the next possession and Mario Chalmers made the Buffs pay with his first three-pointer of the game. Jermyl Jackson-Wilson hit a baseline two moments later for Colorado, making it 20-13 with KU out in front.
Russell Robinson drove hard to get to the line on KU's next turn with the ball, missing his first look and hitting the second. Levi Knutson then canned a three for the Buffs, forcing Bill Self into a 30-second timeout with 8:55 to go and Colorado within five points.
Rodrick Stewart checked in during the break and ound up turning it over looking for Mario Chalmers up top. Richard Roby tried to drive and dunk it against a dwindling shot clock on Colorado's next turn with the ball but was swatted, forcing a shot clock violation heading into a full break.
11:43, first half, KU leads 15-9
Marcus Hall and Xavier Silas each missed short looks off the glass out of the timeout for Colorado, but the Buffs got the ball back after a Brandon Rush three form the left wing rimmed out. Marcus King-Stockton scored inside against Sasha Kaun to pull Colorado to within five.
Sherron Collins drove inside on the ensuing offensive trip for KU and fed Darnell Jackson inside, who drew contact from Jermyl Jackson-Wilson. The KU senior hit one of two free throws. Brandon Rush then quickly pinned a Xavier Silas shot off the glass on the other end, but KU couldn't score in response. Cory Higgins scored his first points of the game for CU, making it a four-point game. Jackson quickly answered for the Jayhawks with a short-range baseline jumper on the right side.
Sherron Collins went hard to the rack on KU's next possession and laid in two while grabbing contact, but a charge call was made against Collins negating the transition bucket.
Cole Aldrich came in after that and immediately wiped away a Jermyl Jackson-Wilson offering off the glass, then drew cheers saving the ball from going out of bounds. Marcus Hall was called for a defensive foul on the other end, bringing the game to a full break.
15:17, first half, KU leads 12-5
Colorado's Marcus Hall controlled the game's opening tip, and Richard Roby was forced to throw an awkward shot off the glass which missed. KU turned it back over, and after Colorado slowed things down, much like it did against KU in the first go-round, and Marcus Hall ended the possession iwth a three. Russell Robinson quickly answered back with a three on the right wing for KU.
Brandon Rush put KU ahead for the first time following a Roby three miss, nailing a shot from the elbow off a screen from Darnell Jackson.
Colorado's Cory Higgins turned it over for the Buffs on hte next pssesson, stepping on hte baseline before driving. Brandon Rush came down and cashed a three atop the key for the Jayhawks, making it 8-3.
Marcus Hall ended Colorado's drought with a long two from near the same spot where he hit a three earlier.
Mario Chalmers tried a three in response but couldn't connect, though he picked off an interior pass on the other end and set up a Darnell Jackson two from the free-throw line on KU's next possession, putting the Jayhawks ahead 10-5.
Darrell Arthur brought the crowd to its feet with a reversed two-handed finish on an alley-oop lob from Brandon Rush, forcing Jeff Bzdelik into a 30-second timeout at the 15:18 mark.
For the second time this season, the Kansas University men's basketball team will try to use Colorado as an elixir to cure hangover woes from a loss.
KU takes on CU today in Allen Fieldhouse after having a few days off to lick wounds from Monday's 72-69 loss to Texas down in Austin. The Jayhawks' first encounter with the Buffs this year came on Feb. 2 in Boulder, with KU then coming off its first loss in Manhattan since 1983. It took the Jayhawks a bit go get going then, tied with the Buffaloes 30-30 at halftime, eventually pulling away 72-59.
The spotlight today for the Jayhawks may be largely on the big men, who came under some fire for the second half at Texas. UT sophomore big man Damion James outrebounded the Jayhawks as a team in the second half, 13-12, and Darrell Arthur and Darnell Jackson combined for just 10 points after the break after scoring a total of 25 in the first.
The biggest obstacle today against CU will be defending Richard Roby, who has blossomed as a well-rounded senior leader for the Buffs under first-year head coach Jeff Bzdelik. Roby's numbers are up almost all the way across the board, as he enters today's action averaging 17.1 points and 6.4 rebounds per game. He scored 22 against the Jayhawks on Feb. 2.
Tip-off is set for 12:45 p.m. with several KU basketball alumni in town for the program's 110th birthday. KU will wear throwback blue uniforms with crimson and gold trim, remakes of the jerseys worn by the 1988 NCAA championship club which will be recognized today. Colorado is in its alternate gold uniforms.