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Basketball: KU’s Self turns eye to Bears

By Jeff Faraudo
Sunday, December 20th, 2009 at 9:28 am in Basketball.

It didn’t take long Saturday for Kansas coach Bill Self to turn his attention to Cal.

When asked about the Bears in the wake of the top-ranked Jayhawks’ 75-64 win over Michigan, Self  suggested KU will need a better effort than he had just seen.

“They’re fast. They’re really fast. (Jerome) Randle, their point guard, is as quick as anybody we will play against this year,” Self told the Lawrence World-Journal. “They’re picked to win the Pac-10 and it will be a tough game.

“Hopefully, we play better then what we did today.”

The Jayhawks (10-0) and Bears (6-3) square off Tuesday night at Allen Fieldhouse, where Kansas has won 48 consecutive games. Cal leaves the Bay Area today for the Midwest.

Senior guard Sherron Collins is quite familiar with Randle, a fellow Chicago native.

“I know him, played on the same AAU team for a little bit. He’s good. He’s real good,” Collins said of Randle. “He’s real fast, probably one of the fastest guards we’ll play all year. He has deep range. He can do it all. We’ll have our hands full with him. It’ll be a tough matchup.”

Junior guard Brady Morningstar, who made his season debut Saturday after a fall-term suspension for an Oct. 3 DUI charge, said he ran into Patrick Christopher last summer while working out in Southern California.

“He is a good player, a big strong kid who can shoot the ball real well. I think they’re a pretty good team also,” Morningstar said. “Randle … as far as I’ve seen, he can really handle the ball. He’s like Sherron. He can handle the ball and score. Christopher can shoot the ball and get to the rim. They do a little bit of everything.”

Just as the Bears recently fought through a flu bug that attacked much of the roster, the Jayhawks are struggling with health issues. In particular, preseason All-America center Cole Aldrich, held without a field goal Saturday, is having a rough time.

Morningstar was asked if Cal could win Tuesday night.

“I think those two (Randle and Christopher) are their top two players,” he said. “As far as them beating us, hopefully not, but if they get hot it could get close.”

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  • uh oh.

    Cole Aldrich having a tough time? Goodness me, he looked to be everywhere during the part of the game I saw. Blocked shots, free throws, big rebounds.
    I laugh at the suggestion he’s having a hard time b/c he’ll be out of that slump after playing the Bears. Max will be in there against him, get in foul trouble, and then we come back with MSF, who will be playing underneath him and will get into foul trouble. Meanwhile, Boykin won’t be able to help out b/c he’ll have his hands full with Mk Morris and others. I shudder to think of the possibilities if Self is determined to pound the ball inside all game. Bak Bak vs. Cole Adrich, soon to be top 5 NBA draft pick? If Bak (who was once rumored to be so skinny and weak that he’d likely redshirt this season) gets minutes, you know the game is over.

    It will be fun to watch Theo match up with Xavier, and PC match up against the freshman #10. I think Randle may have a tough time with Collins, who is strong and steady. That should be a good matchup to watch from an entertainment standpoint. Randle should hope his long ball game is on b/c Collins should be able to keep his body in front of Randle on drives to the basket, not to mention the tall trees on Kansas who will be waiting to swat him.

    Amoke has been playing better and better, but our Bears are just really undersized this year, and next.

    Can’t wait! (What’s 11 and 12 “days” going to bring?)

    Go Bears! Prove the world wrong!