Kansas has started 9-0 and is No. 1 in the country, but that doesn’t tell the whole story of this Jayhawk team.
To break it down a little more, let’s look at some good and not so good things about KU’s young season.
Good: Dedric Lawson
Lawson has been dynamite all year besides one dud of a game against Vermont where he scored zero points and racked up four fouls. The transfer is currently averaging a double double, racking up 19 points and 10 rebounds per contest. He’s also averaging one steal and one block per game, and he is leading the team in assists, affecting the game in every facet and showing that he is more than just scoring flash. Lawson is the leader on most early season Player of the Year polls, and there’s no reason why his production should fall off at any point this year.
Not So Good: Bench Production
KU’s reserves have been so-so thus far. While the Jayhawks are featuring a 10-man rotation, the production just isn’t coming from the bench mob. The best bench player has been Marcus Garrett, who’s averaging just less than seven points and continues to frustrate the opponent’s best players on defense. No other non-starter is averaging more than four points.
One player to watch is Charlie Moore. Moore is playing 19 minutes per game, and the Jayhawks will need him to find his shooting stroke to make a deep run late in the season.
Good: KU’s Core Four
There’s no dispute as to who have been the Jayhawk’s best players early on. Lawson, along with Lagerald Vick, Udoke Azubuike, and Devon Dotson are all averaging over 11 points per game. They’ve each been big contributors so far this season in four unique ways, resulting in one of the best collections of top four players in the country. Lawson has been a beast all year, dominating opponents on the offensive end. Azubuike has become a reliable post scorer and wreaks havoc on defense when opponents try to drive to the basket. Lagerald Vick has been on fire from three, and Devon Dotson has been the steady point guard presence this team needed.
Not So Good: Close Game Overreactions
Kansas has only really blitzed one team so far this year, a 72-47 win against Wofford, and even that game was close in the first half. The close games have made many fans question how good this team is and doubt if they will live up to the early season hype. In reality, close games early on should help build a team’s confidence when conference play and tougher opponents come calling. The fact that KU is playing close games shouldn’t be a cause of worry. The ability to close out those close games consistently should be what fans are really focusing on, and so far, this KU team has passed every test.