Kansas basketball: Five takeaways from victory over Monmouth

(Photo by Ed Zurga/Getty Images)
(Photo by Ed Zurga/Getty Images) /

Kansas basketball absolutely dominated Monmouth last night in a 112-57 victory. Here are five quick takeaways from the Jayhawks’ blowout win.

Kansas basketball got a much-needed win over the Monmouth Hawks last night. The Jayhawks came out hot and never looked back, winning 112-57, and it really wasn’t even that close. Hopefully, it will be the first of may impressive wins for Kansas this season.

1. Kansas basketball got off to a quick start

The Jayhawks came out of the gates hot, which is a good habit for this team to get into.

In-state rival Kansas State actually played Monmouth a few nights ago and went into halftime with a nine-point deficit to the Hawks.

On the other hand, Kansas was up 26-6 halfway through the first half. The Jayhawks ended up extending their lead to 59-21 going into halftime.

Being able to start fast is a huge advantage, and could very well be a strength for this team going into future games.

2. Isaiah Moss is the real deal

Isaiah Moss, a grad transfer from Iowa, might be just what Kansas basketball lacked: a pure shooter. Moss finished the night with a team-high 21 points off the bench. He took six shots the entire game, going 5-6 from behind the three-point line.

The best part is that Moss isn’t even 100% healthy right now according to Bill Self.

As Moss finds his groove with the Jayhawks, he’s going to be one of the most important players on the team, but for more reasons than just his excellent three-point shooting ability.

Moss forces defenses to respect his range, which creates opportunities for Devon Dotson to drive and Udoka Azubuike to get the ball in the post. Moss’ value simply can’t be overstated this season.

3. David McCormack deserves minutes

In just 16 minutes, David McCormack notched a double-double, picking up 17 points, 11 rebounds, and four assists. McCormack may come off the bench this season, but he’d probably start at just about any other team in the Big 12.

The problem is that Kansas basketball has such a deep and talented frontcourt with Udoka Azubuike and Silvo De Sousa, it’s hard to find time to get all three minutes considering all three should get significant time.

Still, McCormack’s proving that he can rebound extremely well and score, so he certainly deserves to get a little more time on the floor.

4. The freshmen are continuing to show out

Tristan Enaruna and Christian Braun are continuing to show what they’re made of. Enaruna finished the night with seven points and four rebounds, plus an amazing dunk. Braun was perfect on the night, shooting 4-4 including three of three from behind the arc. He finished the night with 11 points.

5. Kansas basketball can win without their star players

Through the Phog contributor, Nick Streeter pointed out on Twitter, “(Ochai Agbaji) has two points tonight… and they’re still winning by 50+.”

Agbaji would go on to finish the game with just four points in the Jayhawks’ 57 point win, but Streeter’s point still stands: this team is talented from top to bottom.

Other teams may collapse if their star player has a bad night, but the Jayhawks have plenty of star power to go around. While Kansas basketball has its leads in Dotson, Azubuike, and Agbaji, it also has its less known heroes like Moss, McCormack, and others.

It’s those less known guys that can make the difference down the road when Kansas is playing a more meaningful game and Dotson or Doke can’t get it going, and that’s going to come in handy when March rolls around.

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While Monmouth is certainly a subpar team, the Jayhawks didn’t mess around with them and pull a Kentucky, so that’s a positive. Kansas basketball’s next game will be this Tuesday against East Tennessee State at 7:00 PM in Allen Fieldhouse.