The Kansas Jayhawks kicked off the 2010 season with an impressive exhibition victory over Washburn University last night. Yes, Washburn is an in-state Div. II team, but the Jayhawks looked extremely athletic and poised in their opening dress rehearsal.
Marcus Morris led all scorers with 28 points and seven rebounds, showing why he is a Naismith Award candidate. Morris scored from everywhere on the floor and was clearly the best player on the floor for most of the night.
Tyshawn Taylor played very well, showing poise in running KU's offense and appeared to be in total control of his game and emotions. Although Kansas should play well against an over-matched opponent, Taylor needed to rid himself of the immaturity in his game from his first two seasons and he played like a seasoned veteran.
Kansas had a very balanced scoring attack, with the exception of Marcus Morris. Ten Jayhawks scratched the scoring column, with Markieff Morris and Taylor tallying 12 points each. Thomas Robinson added 6 points and 6 rebounds and was very active around the basket.
Mario Little played well at small forward for KU, chipping in eight points and playing solid defense.
What Kansas fans can take away from this exhibition contest is hope. KU is every bit as fast as advertised. They share the ball extremely well (21 assists) and they play rugged, physical defense. This Kansas squad will continue to improve, but looked very polished for this early in the 2010-2011 campaign.
Look for the Jayhawks to fly under the radar for a while, but should they continue to gel and develop, it won't be for long. Kansas is very athletic and they have proven leadership and scoring at every position. Kansas will again challenge for a conference title and a deep run in the NCAA Tournament.