The college basketball world is buzzing about Jack Taylor, a 5-foot-10 sophomore running-and-gunning machine from Grinnell (Iowa) College who scored an NCAA-record 138 points in Tuesday’s 179-104 victory over Faith Baptist Bible.
“That is great, but that is not real,” Kansas University coach Bill Self said with a laugh, asked about the feat by radio voice of the Jayhawks Bob Davis on Self’s weekly “Hawk Talk” show. “You take 108 shots, and your next nearest teammate takes six? When Wilt hung 100 (points), how many shots did he take to get 100? Was it 60? I think it’s one of those things the coach definitely wanted to get some publicity for his school. It did work. He (Taylor) was lead story on ESPN.”
Let’s do some numbers crunching in comparing Taylor’s accomplishment to that of former KU 7-footer Wilt Chamberlain, who scored 100 points in the Philadelphia Warriors’ 169-147 NBA regular-season victory over the New York Knicks on March 2, 1962.
Taylor, who hails from Black River Falls, Wis., on Tuesday sank 52 of 108 shots. He was 27-of-71 from beyond the three-point arc. He also made seven free throws off 10 attempts while playing 36 minutes.
As far as secondary stats, Taylor had zero assists, six turnovers, three steals and three rebounds.
Chamberlain hit 36 of 63 shots while converting 28 of 32 free throws. Chamberlain also grabbed 25 rebounds in 48 minutes. Two of Wilt’s teammates had double-digit shot attempts. Paul Arizin was 7-of-18 and Tom Meschery 7-of-12, both finishing with 16 points. Philly’s Al Attles scored 17 points off 8-of-8 shooting and Guy Rodgers 11 points off 1-of-4 shooting and 9-of-12 free-throw shooting.
Taylor’s onslaught eclipsed the old NCAA single-game scoring record of 113 points, set by Rio Grande’s Clarence “Bevo” Francis in a 134-91 victory over Newberry on Feb. 2, 1954. The 6-foot-9 Francis scored his 113 points off 38-of-70 shooting. He also added 37 free-throw makes. He scored 116 points in another game, but that was against a junior college, thus not recognized by the NCAA.
“I knew in time somebody was going to break it (scoring record),” the 80-year-old Francis told the New York Times. “When I played, we didn’t have the 1-and-1, we didn’t have the 3-point, nothing (including a shot clock).”
The Associated Press reported in 1954 that Francis was triple-teamed en route to the record.
“I guess I’m the luckiest guy in the world,” Francis said at the time. “I never cared much about points before, but I really did want to break 100 sometime this year. It seemed like I couldn’t miss.”
Furman’s Frank Selvy scored 100 points against Newberry College, also in 1954. Before this week, the closest anyone had crept to 100 since that effort was Portland State’s Freeman Williams, who scored 81 points versus Rocky Mountain on Feb. 3, 1978.
Larry, Larry: Former Kansas University coach Larry Brown has SMU off to a 5-0 start, the program’s best start since a 10-0 mark in 1997-98. SMU, which plays Arkansas-Little Rock today, has defeated Loyola Marymount (73-58), TCU (64-61), Texas State (78-75), Malone (81-47) and Rider (83-70).
“After the first week, I told them to go home. I told them I’d pray we’d be able to win one game,” Brown said. “I wasn’t kidding. I’m just proud of them. I see growth in everybody.”
Brown, who has former KU assistant Tim Jankovich on his staff as the Mustangs’ coach-in-waiting, said he’s “thrilled” with the attitude of his players.
“Matt (Doherty, former KU assistant who was fired by SMU last spring) left us with high-character kids that have good values,” Brown said. “Unfortunately, we don’t have enough of them right now. They are on the horizon (in recruiting).”
Brown is looking forward to Dec. 2-14 when his team has no games because of final exams.
“We’ll have time to get back in the gym and teach a little bit more. Now we are doing a lot of teaching on film,” Brown said. “We are not wearing them out on the court. I’m a practice guy.”
Former KU All-America player and assistant coach Danny Manning’s first Tulsa team is off to a 4-1 start heading into today’s game against Stephen F. Austin. Tulsa has defeated LSU-Shreveport (110-54), Northern Kentucky (76-56), San Diego (63-51) and Jackson State (92-76) and lost to Cal State Northridge (92-76).
Former KU guard Jerod Haase’s first UAB team is off to a 3-1 start heading into today’s game against Illinois State. UAB has defeated Young Harris College (105-59), Navy (82-63) and Prairie View A&M (76-70) and lost to Creighton (77-60).
Former KU guard Jacque Vaughn’s first Orlando Magic team is off to a 5-7 start.