The Kansas Jayhawks haven't been at their best on the offensive side of the ball lately, but that shouldn't be a big concern at all for Bill Self's club.
Kansas, who is currently the hottest team in college basketball, is enjoying a 16-game winning streak. In that stretch, the Jayhawks have seen their offense go from good to great, back to good, followed by a slip to mediocre.
In five of its last six games, Kansas has failed to break the 70-point mark against the likes of Temple, Texas Tech, Baylor, Texas and No. 11 Kansas State. In fact, the Jayhawks failed to break the 60-point mark in their last game against the Wildcats, with 59, and scored just 60 and 61 against Texas Tech and Baylor, respectively.
The only semblance of great offense in this span was against Iowa State, when Kansas scored 97 points in a winning effort that went to overtime.
So, with this recent lack of offense, how does Kansas continue to win?
Defense, of course. In their last four games, the Jayhawks have held their opponents to under 60 points, including two victories that saw Kansas hold opponents under 50 points.
While you'd like to see this team score more points on a nightly basis, it hasn't proven to be that big of a deal. Even with their recent offensive struggles, the Jayhawks are averaging 75.1 points per game for the season, which is impressive for such a talented defensive squad.
Coach Self is obviously preaching defense to his team and it has certainly rubbed off on each and every player on the roster.
What's astonishing is that Kansas is not at the top of most of the major statistical categories on defense, with the exception of blocks per game. The Jayhawks are averaging just under eight blocks per contest, good enough for second in the nation.
This is a team that brings an incredible intensity to the defensive end on a nightly basis. They force difficult shots on defense, and even when their opponents do get the ball in close, Kansas has the ability to return those shots from whence they came.
It shouldn't be mistaken that this team can't be an offensive force.
Looking at their earlier games this season, clearly this team can score the basketball and is just in the midst of a tough stretch. But with the type of defense they play, the Jayhawks can afford to have a letdown at the offensive end.
As it stands now, this team has some work to do in order to be a more complete team, but the evidence is certainly there that they can get it done. If they can combine their sensational defensive effort with a more consistent offense, the Jayhawks will be a clear-cut favorite to win another national championship come March and April.
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