After Oklahoma’s Monday loss at Iowa State, the Kansas Jayhawks are in a three-way tie for first place atop the Big 12 standings, with West Virginia and Baylor. KU will try to stay in that position Tuesday night by beating Oklahoma State on the road.
Cheick Diallo’s sudden test run of increased minutes Saturday vs. TCU went well enough for KU coach Bill Self to make the freshman big his 5th starter tonight at Oklahoma State.
Diallo is coming off a game in which he played a career-high 21 minutes (previous was 18 vs. Holy Cross), shot 4-for-7 from the floor, scored 9 points, pulled down 9 boards and swatted away 5 shots.
Diallo’s audition kind of came out of nowhere, as Diallo had played 10 or fewer minutes in 8 straight KU games.
Tonight definitely will be Diallo’s largest test to date as a Jayhawk, and Self, of course, timed it well, with Oklahoma State lacking an imposing front line.
Something else to watch for KU tonight: this could be a a significant chance for Svi Mykhailiuk to win himself more playing time going forward. Brannen Greene is out with a bruised knee, so that means Svi should get an extended look.
If he thrives on the road, in a hostile environment, makes some shots, takes care of the ball, plays defense — the things Self wants out of all the players — maybe Svi also starts trending upward as we move toward the postseason.
Svi hasn’t scored in double figures since the non-conference, vs. Montana.
Here’s a look at the sophomore’s numbers in true road games:
- at San Diego State: 0/2 from 3, 1 assist, 0 points
- at Texas Tech: 2/3 from 3, 2 rebounds, 1 steal, 7 points
- at West Virginia: 0/3 from 3, 1 assist, 1 turnover, 1 steal, 0 points
Hammonds misses a corner 3 to open night for OSU. Cowboys get offensive rebound, but fr. G Evans picks up his first turnover on a travel.
Like the idea: run a set for Diallo to score inside on first possession. Didn't work, missed a difficult reverse lay-in.
Wayne Selden goes wedgie on a missed 3 — ball wedges between the rim and backboard. Possession arrow to KU.
Diallo aggressive, draws a foul, but misses 2 FTs.