Ben McLemore’s Impact On Kansas
This has been a great season for the No. 4 Kansas Jayhawks except for a minor setback with a loss to Michigan State by three earlier this season. Their senior leadership is among the most talented and experienced guys in the Big 12. They come out leading the team by example, passion, confidence and consistency each time they step on the court. Each senior has made his impact one way or another this season.
Jeff Withey has stepped up both is defensive and offensive game. Kevin Young brings the fire and explodes on the opposing team when they don’t pay attention to him. Travis Releford has proved the critics wrong and is becoming one of the go-to scorers on the team especially when Coach Bill Self lays into him. Elijah Johnson is the floor general making sure to get every one involved in the game. They are leaders that are showing all of us that you should never count out the Jayhawks. Each one of these guys has their own purpose by swatting the rock, rebounding, defense pressure, and handing the ball off.
There is another player who I believe has had more impact on the Jayhawks this season than another season, Ben McLemore. You can even find a little video of him dancing in the visiting locker room after the Kansas win over Ohio State. He has some classy dance moves but better than that he has some terrific ball skills. Look what he has done so far the Jayhawks as a red-shirt freshman.
Last year he rode the bench because he was ineligible but it helped him learn Self system and now he has exploded on the scene. He hit the game tying three to head into overtime against Iowa State and scored 33 points. He has been the go-to guy to score and more teams have noticed this. His passion for the game is contagious and he can fly to the rim. Right now he is listed as the No. 2 pick in the upcoming NBA draft. If you just sit back and watch his game you will know that there is something special about this guy.
This past Monday night against Baylor, McLemore gave a complete performance. He stood out for more than his offense, which he led the Jayhawks with 17 points, 8 rebounds and three steals, he was also tough on the inside by blocking two shots and wasn’t afraid to go after every loose ball. Well, a gasp went through Allen Fieldhouse when McLemore went down and had to be carried back to the locker room. McLemore tweaked his ankle with only around two minutes left in the game and the crowd stopped breathing for a little bit because all eyes were on McLemore. He has been their superman this season and was even named the Big 12 conference player of the week.
So Jayhawk fans you can breath now, according to Self, McLemore only has a sprained ankle and will only miss a couple of days. I don’t believe an ankle sprain will keep McLemore from doing his thing and from making an impact on the court. McLemore will be ready to fly when the Jayhawks visit Texas this Saturday and he will keep on dancing. (On a side note the guy eating his jersey in McLemore’s dancing video is walk-on Christian Garrett.)