Former Lansing High players Clay Young of Kansas and Siler Schneider of UC Davis guarded each other the final three minutes of the Jayhawks’ 100-62 first-round NCAA Tournament victory over the Aggies on Friday night at BOK Center.
“I told Clay, ‘He’s busting your butt just like he did every day at practice at Lansing High,’” Kansas coach Bill Self said. Self actually spoke to the two players as they stood on the court just a few steps from KU’s bench in the closing moments.
“I gave Clay crap all day,” Self added. “I said, ‘He was Batman and you were Robin’ (after) looking at their stats in high school. He’s a good player. He played well in the first half especially,” Self added of Schneider, who scored 10 points — all in the first half.
Young had one rebound and one foul at the end of the game.
Schneider missed a dunk try with 38 seconds left.
“I’m sure he never would have forgotten it if he dunked on KU,” Young said after the game.
No foul called on hard hit before half
KU’s fans — and coach Self — were furious when Devonté Graham was run into at halfcourt by Chima Moneke, and no foul called, at the end of the first half.
“I asked him (ref), ‘Why wasn’t that a foul?’ He said, ‘Well, he (Moneke) has the same right to go after the ball,’’’ Self said. “I said, ‘Good gosh, in the NFL, a defensive back coach would have been happy with that play.’ He came and told me the second half that he missed it. He said he got swallowed up, which in officiating terms that means he was too close to actually see it because it happened too close to him. I’m sure maybe it could have gone in our favor. It wasn’t because of anything besides he was too close to see it.”
KU had jitters early
Kansas senior Frank Mason explained the Jayhawks’ slow start. The game was tied 21-21 before KU rolled, 29-7, the rest of the half.
“I think we had some jitters. I’m not sure who the jitters were from. They were a little out there,” Mason said. “I think guys were playing a little tight early, thinking too much. We got a little bit loose and showed how good we can be, how good we can defend.”
Tears on stat sheet
UC Davis coach Jim Les was emotional in speaking after his squad’s 100-62 loss.
“Chima (Moneke, 20 points, nine rebounds) just asked me for the stat sheet. It has some tears on it, so it’s a little tough to read,” Les said.
“I don’t want tonight and what the outcome and the score to take away from what this group did. They put UC Davis basketball and UC Davis on the map, nationally, internationally. And they were just a special group. We just had as emotional a locker room as I’ve ever been part of, and I’ve been part of a lot of teams. There’s a lot to be grateful for, and I’m going to be indebted to this group of Aggies for a long time. They’ve raised the bar for what UC Davis basketball is going to look like coming forward.”
UC Davis was making its first-ever appearance in the NCAA Tournament. The school joined Division I in 2007.
Coach comments on technical
Les was called for a technical foul that accounted for Kansas’ third and fourth points of a half-ending 29-7 run. Kansas’ Frank Mason hit the two technical foul shots.
“I wish I could take back the technical, but it happened,” Les said. “Unfortunately we weren’t able to stem the tide, and I thought that run starting there leading to halftime gave them some pretty good separation, unfortunately.
“I thought it was quick,” he added of getting the ‘T’ after a layup by Kansas’ Josh Jackson. “It’s an intense, emotional game. The call was on the other end, just on a handoff. And we had quick dialogue with the official as there was a timeout being called, and he felt it warranted a technical. So it is what it is.”
Bradley game no factor in this one
Les, who coached Bradley when the Braves shocked KU in the 2006 NCAA Tournament, said: “That really didn’t have any impact in getting ready for this game, completely different teams, other than the respect I have for Coach Self and the teams and how he coaches and the talent and how versatile they are. It was going to be a tough challenge for us. I don’t think they were taken back by the moment it was more so giving Kansas credit for how they executed and how they played and how good they are rather than it’s a deterrent from UC Davis and who these guys are.”
KU to play Spartans
KU will next meet Michigan State, a 78-58 winner over Miami on Saturday. Kansas and Michigan Sate will square off on Sunday at BOK Center. The winner advances to a Sweet 16 game on Thursday at the Sprint Center.