KU’s two All-Americans – Thomas Robinson is and Tyshawn Taylor – were big time off their games yesterday…
And Kansas looked like a sure loser against Purdue the entire game until the very end, when a point guard named Elijah led Kansas to the promised land.
Elijah Johnson – who is likely to be the star of next year’s team – saved the day.
Robinson and Taylor could just not score, hitting only six shots from the field.
So how did Kansas beat a good Purdue team? Bill Self.
In what was maybe Self’s best coaching job since the national title game in 2008, he was making more moves to stop Purdue and get Kansas scoring than Republicans trying to find someone to challenge Obama.
Early on Self could see Robinson was unable to get the ball to go down and Taylor was headed for foul trouble, so he put the bench guys in EARLY.
Names like Naadir Tharpe (who hit a three), Justin Wesley, Kevin Young and the more-often-used senior guard Conner Teahan.
But the night belonged to Elijah – he led Kansas with 18 big points.
Kansas trailed until the last minute when Elijah put KU up by one, 61-60. Then Kansas got a rare offensive rebound for the night, scored and it was bye, bye Purdue.
The Boilermakers, Robbie Hummel had been unstoppable in the first half with 22 points until Self’s genius moves slowed him down in the second half and gave KU a chance to come back. Hummel only had four second half points.
Kansas fell way behind early and looked like the CHOKE Missouri team of a few days earlier.
Most of the game KU was behind by 5-10 points until they closed with good D and timely shots in the last two minutes.
By the way Norfolk State – the team that beat MU and looked so great two days ago – was crushed and NEVER in the game against 7th-seeded Florida and lost 84-50. Florida did whatever it wanted to and could have even beaten Norfolk worse had it desired.
Making it look kinda like Missouri got beaten by Shawnee Mission East.
The tough Purdue win may give KU some confidence.
And North Carolina coach Roy Williams lost his No 1 guy Kendall Marshall to a wrist injury. Marshall may not play another game. So if KU beats North Carolina State Friday, its Roy’s boys and North Carolina against KU maybe on Sunday for the trip to the Final Four.
How sweet would that be? A chance for KU to extract a pound of revenge flesh from Benedict Roy.
Come on Thomas Robinson, dump the Mike Sweeney imitation and get rolling son!