Game 5: Oakland at No. 3 Kansas – Preview and Prediction

The Jayhawks go for 5-0.

Off their Thanksgiving feasting of the Texas Southern Tigers, the Jayhawks welcome the Oakland Golden Grizzlies into Allen Fieldhouse for a campus game of the HoopHall Invitational.

About Oakland: The Golden Grizzlies of the Horizon League aren’t from Oakland, California, but rather from Oakland, Michigan. They have two players posting at least 2o+ points per game, and everyone else is under 10. It’s a team that’s one of the country’s smaller rosters, but they spread the ball around and typically like to play at a high pace.

Game Info and Notes:

  • Friday, November 24th, 2017 at 7:00 pm
  • Allen Fieldhouse, Lawrence, Kan.
  • Spectrum Sports, 38 the Spot, or ESPN3
  • One matchup in history between the two schools, which came in 2009-10 and the No. 1 Jayhawks beat Oakland by 30 points. Xavier Henry and Marcus Morris both scored 19 points.
Golden Grizzlies to Watch

Kendrick Nunn – 6’3″ guard

Leading the team with 24 points and five assists per game, Nunn is a 40% three-point shooter that can score in a variety of ways. He also is one of the team’s best defenders, making him a presence on both ends of the floor.

Martez Walker – 6’6″ wing

Walker is the other Golden Grizzly averaging at least 20 points per game, checking in at 22 points and six rebounds per game. He’s coming off a week where he had 27 and 29-point contests. He’s an athletic wing who spends a ton of time under the basket, but his versatility allows him to make all types of shots.

James Beck – 6’8″ power forward

Beck isn’t technically a center, but he is Oakland’s leading rebounder with seven boards per contest. He very rarely leaves the paint, where he shoots a high percentage.

Prediction

Kansas 92, Oakland 68

AUDIO PREVIEW: LINK

Another cupcake game for the Jayhawks that shouldn’t provide much of a challenge. Eventually, the Jayhawks are due to have an opponent that keeps things close for at least a half, but Kansas is just too talented to not go on a huge run eventually and turn it into a laugher. Oakland doesn’t have the arsenal to slow down Udoka Azubuike, who is three inches taller than any Golden Grizzly that gets meaningful minutes. Look for him to feast down low the day after Thanksgiving.

Ryan Landreth

I’m a recent graduate of MidAmerica Nazarene University. In addition to writing for Rock Chalk Blog, I host the Inside the Paint podcast that covers KU basketball, and I write for Royals Review in the summer. My grandma has had season tickets to Jayhawk basketball for 30 years, and I have the privilege of going to most games with her.