After taking down Villanova in a hard-fought victory on Saturday afternoon, No. 1 Kansas returns to action on Tuesday night when the Jayhawks host South Dakota at Allen Fieldhouse. The Coyotes come in at 6-5 on the year with no real notable wins to date, although they hung in there with Baylor for a full 40 minutes. South Dakota went 26-9 last year before falling in the Summit League Championship final. This is, perhaps, the weakest opponent left on KU’s schedule.
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Game Info and Notes:
- Tuesday, December 18, 2018 at 7 PM CDT
- Allen Fieldhouse, Lawrence, Kan.
- ESPN+ ($)
- Kansas and South Dakota are meeting first time in men’s basketball. KU is 18-5 all-time against current members of the Summit League.
- Kansas is looking to go 10-0 for the first time since the 2010-11 team opened the season 18-0. A 10-0 record would be the fifth in head coach Bill Self’s 16 seasons at KU (14-0 in 2004-05, 20-0 in 2007-08, 14-0 in 2009-10 and 18-0 in 2010-11).
- A 10-0 start would also mark the 16th 10-game winning streak for the Jayhawks in the Self era and the longest since 2016-17 when KU won 18-straight from Nov. 15, 2016 to Jan. 21, 2017.
- At 9-0, Kansas is one of nine teams in NCAA Division I still undefeated.
- Five of Kansas’ nine wins have been by six points or less, including each of the last two three-point victories.
- Kansas is 47-3 in Allen Fieldhouse when it is the No. 1 team in the Associated Press poll, including 21-0 under head coach Bill Self. The Jayhawks have won 39 straight in Allen Fieldhouse when ranked No. 1 dating back to the 1994-95 season.
- With five double-doubles in his last six games and six-straight 20-point outings, Dedric Lawson is the only player in the Big 12 to average a double-double with 20.1 ppg and a conference-leading 10.8 rpg.
Kansas 85, South Dakota 67
This should be nothing more than a tune-up for the Jayhawks before they face a stiff road test on Saturday at Arizona State. There are some things KU needs to focus on, especially on the offensive end.
The Jayhawks turned the ball over far too much against Villanova on Saturday, which ultimately let the Wildcats get back in the game in the first half, when it should have been a blowout.
Also, who other than Lagerald Vick and Dedric Lawson is going to step up offensively while Udoka Azubuike is out? Marcus Garrett makes a huge defensive impact, but to date, he has yet to show much on offense despite an improved jump shot. Outside of the first game of the season, Quentin Grimes has been more or less a non-factor out there.
The guy I’m expecting to step up, and he did late against Villanova, is Devon Dotson. Give me him to have a huge game on Tuesday night by making shots, driving to the rim and dishing assists. He reminds me a lot of Frank Mason with his speed and toughness off the dribble.
I like KU to roll against South Dakota and set up a huge showdown in the desert on Saturday against ASU.