University of Kansas

Kansas-Towson basketball preview

Updated: 2013-11-22T00:46:06Z

• WHEN/WHERE: 7 p.m. Friday at Allen Fieldhouse in Lawrence

• TV/RADI O: Time Warner Cable SportsChannel; KCSP (610 AM)

• ABOUT TOWSON (3-1) : Two years ago, Towson finished 1-31 in the first season under head coach Pat Skerry. Last season, Skerry guided the Tigers to an 18-13 finish, setting a Division I record for the best one-season turnaround. Towson is 3-1 this season with a victory over Temple and a loss at Villanova. Senior forward Jerrelle Benimon, a Georgetown transfer, averaged 17.1 points and 11.2 rebounds last season for the Tigers. Kansas coach Bill Self likened Benimon to former Iowa State star Royce White. Towson hasn’t faced an opponent ranked No. 1 or No. 2 since losing 77-68 to No. 1 Oklahoma in the 1990 NCAA Tournament.

• ABOUT KANSAS (3-0): Kansas freshman guard Frank Mason, a native of Petersburg, Va., committed to Towson out of high school before electing to attend a prep school for a year. He parlayed the extra year into an offer from Kansas, and Mason is now averaging 9.0 points per game off the bench in three games. (“He was definitely overlooked at times,” KU guard Wayne Selden said.) Senior forward Tarik Black has just nine points and nine fouls in three games, but KU coach Bill Self said Black would be back in the starting lineup against Towson. The other option would have been freshman Joel Embiid, who is coming off a double-double, but Self would like to get Black going.

• BOTTOM LINE: Early next week, Kansas will leave for the Battle 4 Atlantis tourney in the Bahamas. But first, the Jayhawks will have to maneuver past a Towson program that has greatly improved since losing 100-54 in Allen Fieldhouse two years ago.

PNo.TowsonHt.Yr.PPG
F15Timajh Parker-Rivera6-7So.3.5
F20Jerrelle Benimon6-8Sr.17.5
F1Marcus Damas6-7Sr.10.8
G23Mike Burwell6-5Sr.9.0
G0Jerome Hairston6-3So.6.3

PNo.KansasHt.Yr.PPG
F25Tarik Black6-9Sr.3.0
F34Perry Ellis6-8So.19.0
G22Andrew Wiggins6-8Fr.17.0
G1Wayne Selden6-5Fr.10.0
G10Naadir Tharpe5-11Jr.6.0

| Rustin Dodd, rdodd@kcstar.com

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