Kansas defeats Baylor 73-68 despite Baylor’s late game surge.
Kansas began the game on a dominant 18-2 run looking sharp in all aspects. The Jayhawks defense was stellar, and shots were falling consistently. After the first 12 minutes of the game, Kansas allowed Baylor guard Jared Butler to knock down three shots from behind the arc. After that defensive lapse, Kansas finished off the half strong by knocking down their last 3 attempts from deep. It started with a 26 foot jumper by Lagerald Vick with 1:50 left in the half. Then, with 1:14 left in the half, freshman Ochai Agbaji knocked down another. And with less than 5 seconds left in the half, Vick put Kansas up 35-25 by knocking down his third three point shot of the half.
Vick continued his success throughout the second half by knocking down 3 triples. Baylor was quiet the first 36 minutes of the game although they controlled the rebounding battle 49-30. Despite being down 68-48 with 3:45 left, Baylor went on a surprising run to give the Jayhawks a scare.
It started with an and one from Baylor forward Matthew Mayer. With 1:25 left, Baylor guard Devonte Bandoo knocked down a triple to close the gap to 11 points. With 20 seconds left in the half, down 72-65 Bandoo hit an improbable pull up 3 which cut it to a 4 point deficit for Baylor. Dedric Lawson was then fouled, putting the Jayhawks up 5. Baylor was unable to score on the following game resulting in a final score of 73-68.
Kansas coach Bill Self was not thrilled with the way his team played. Although his team was able to secure a pivotal road win and Vick was able to get back on track, Self described his Jayhawks as “soft” due to the fact that they allowed 26 offensive rebounds and only grabbed 4 offensive boards of their own. This embarrassment of a statistic sparked a reaction from ex Kansas guard Devonte Graham. Graham tweeted, “Coach self about to go NUTS after the game!! #TrustMeIKNOW.” Clearly, Self is going to stress rebounding before the Jayhawks next game against Texas on Monday.