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Missed Opportunities

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OK, I'll admit it. I've been griping about the officials a bit a lot. While it's unquestionable that 60 fouls is way too much for a college basketball game (that's 1.5 fouls every minute, or about 0.875 fouls per shot clock [35 seconds]), we lost the game because we didn't play up to our potential. The 60 fouls were a disservice to both Kansas and Oklahoma.

I'll also admit it that Kansas is a good team. They really have a lot of talented young players and will clearly be great for years to come in the Big 12. You have to give credit where credit is due. How about Sherron Collins? That guy was unreal, those consecutive three pointers were back-breakers.

In any event, we missed some major opportunities, and that's on us:

  • We played really well starting at the 6:56 mark in the 2nd half. Cade hit a 3 pointer to close the gap from 62-53 to 62-56. From that point on we scored on 5 consecutive possessions through the 4:49 mark (includes Cade's 3). That brought the game to 69-65, extremely manageable for about 5 minutes left in the game, especially at home.
  • At 4:27 mark, Kansas missed another jumper, Leary got the defensive rebound and Cade was quickly fouled. But he missed both free throws. If he had made those, it would have been a 69-67 game.
  • The next Kansas possession, Juan Pattillo fouled Tyshawn Taylor who made both free throws to make it 71-65 with 4:09 left.
  • On our next possession (and I'll actually not complain about the refs here) Willie turned the ball over by losing the ball driving to the hoop. He might have tried to do a little too much in this situation and they probably should have set up a play (they had about half the shot clock left)
  • All that aside, Cade made a marvelous block and set up Omar Leary's three which made it 71-68 with 3:39 left. That made it 71-68, but had Cade been his normal automatic self from the free throw line, it could have been 71-70.
  • Willie Warren then made a triple sandwiched between two Sherron Collins threes to make it 77-71 with 2:30 left. Not much you can do about that, Collins was just on fire. But, back to missed free throws, could have been 77-73.
  • However, after Collins' three, only 7 seconds into the shot clock, Willie drove to the basket and was called for an offensive foul. Again, probably trying to do too much and they should have probably tried to set up a play.
  • From that point on, things just went downhill. Kansas made 1 of 2 free throws. Pattillo missed a dunk and it was 78-71. The guy who shot free throws for Kansas next missed both, but Aldrich got the rebound on the second miss and they extended the lead to 80-71. Had we got the rebound there and even scored a quick two, it could have been 78-73 with about 1:30 left. And those two free throws factored in, could have been 78-75 - a whole different ball game.

Not to mention that we were sloppy with the ball the entire game and had a lot of turnovers. We missed 11 free throws (could have made up the point differential with that alone). I think we will get the ship righted though. Hopefully AJ and Crocker will benefit from a long rest. Hopefully Blake will get healthy by Saturday.