Campus Corner

The Star's blog on college sports, featuring Kansas, Kansas State and Missouri

The Bonus: A look at Kansas' last-second victory over Texas Tech

02/20/2014 12:12 AM

02/20/2014 12:41 AM

Sometime over the last 11 years, Bill Selfs coaching reputation began to evolve. He was always The Master Recruiter, an accomplished winner who could manage a roster and put a team of top-50 recruits on the floor.

But in those early years at Kansas, Self was never thought of as a late-game tactician. But now, you can hardly go a game without a color analyst talking up Selfs ability to take advantage of in-bounds opportunities and draw up useful sets. Perhaps nothing has changed in the last 10 years. But perception can be a powerful thing.

If you watch enough Kansas, you notice a familiar trend. Its not that Self draws up late-game plays that opponents havent seen before. Its generally that KU runs the same two or three late-game sets sets with multiple options and the Jayhawks generally run them well.

On Tuesday night in Lubbock, Kansas beat Texas Tech in the final seconds. There was an element of luck involved, of course maybe a lot of luck. But its worth taking a look back at that final possession, when Andrew Wiggins swooped in and dropped in a last-second layup after Joel Embiid lost the ball across the lane.

Its not just that it was essentially the same set that Kansas ran to tie the game against Colorado earlier in the season. (

Remember that play?

) It was the exact same play that the Jayhawks had run on the previous possession. So before we get to Kansas final play, lets look at the possession before that, when the Jayhawks trailed 61-60 with under 40 seconds left.

Kansas spread the floor with Andrew Wiggins on the left wing, and Joel Embiid on the block. And Perry Ellis set a high ball screen for Naadir Tharpe.