Turnovers were one of the main discussion points in the Stanford and Kansas locker rooms Saturday, a day before the teams play for a Sweet 16 spot at the Scottrade Center in St. Louis.
The Jayhawks trailed by as many as nine points in the first half as they committed 13 turnovers before turning it around for an 80-69 win over Eastern Kentucky in the NCAA Tournament round of 64 on Friday.
No. 2 seed KU faces No. 10 seed Stanford at 11:15 a.m. Sunday for a spot in the South Regional semifinals in Memphis, Tenn.
Stanford’s Anthony Brown said the Cardinal would look to confuse the Jayhawks on offense. KU’s Naadir Tharpe was replaced by freshman Conner Frankamp in the lineup after four early turnovers, but Tharpe returned for the second half and didn’t turn it over the rest of the way.
“Anytime we can try to throw different looks at them,” Brown said, “whether it’s the zone or the man or the press. Just try to give them different looks and make them think about stuff and not let them just play and be free and throw lobs and dunks, which they love to do.”
KU’s Perry Ellis said the key to reducing turnovers was mostly internal, not a result of what the opposition is doing.
“I feel like it’s something easy for us to turn around just to slow the game down,” Ellis said. “Our guards just need to slow the game down and good things will happen from there.
“We have to have the ability to focus on the different types of pressures that teams bring.”