LAWRENCE, Kan. —
Kansas ended up shooting 58.6 percent from the field, and 5 of 10 from beyond the arc, in building a 47-29 halftime advantage. It was the most points the offensively troubled Jayhawks had scored in a half since putting up 53 in the first half against American on Dec. 29.
“We just played as a team,” McLemore said. “Went out there and gave it our all. It started on the defensive end. We got some stops and created on the offensive end.”
Kansas State drew within 58-43 with 14:04 left, but Withey snuffed out the comeback.
The reigning Big 12 defensive player of the year swatted away a shot by McGruder and, moments later, threw down a massive dunk over Jordan Henriquez — a fellow 7-footer — before finishing off the three-point play. Withey then rejected McGruder at the other end, and Travis Releford had the putback that restored the Jayhawks’ 20-point lead at 63-43 with 11:59 to go.
The Jayhawks put the game on cruise control down the stretch, giving Weber — who once followed Self as the man in charge at Illinois — his third loss in three tries against Kansas, and the Wildcats their sixth straight defeat in Lawrence.
Talk about things getting back to normal.
“First of all, losing three in a row is not — I understand it’s not forgivable. It’s a terrible, terrible deal. But what we’re going through is what 99 percent of teams in America go through,” Self said. “There’s only 1 percent that doesn’t go through this kind of stretch. And we’re spoiled because it’s been a long time since we went through one of these stretches.”