No. 2 Kansas knocked off by Stanford 60-57
Published 12:00 am Monday, March 24, 2014
ST. LOUIS — Next stop for Andrew Wiggins, the NBA draft lottery.
The Kansas freshman, sensational all season, would just as soon forget what looks to be his college swan song.
“I could have done a lot better, I didn’t give my team what they needed,” Wiggins said after scoring just four points with four turnovers in the second-seeded Jayhawks’ 60-57 loss to No. 10 seed Stanford on Sunday in the third round of the South Regional.
Just a little more from Wiggins, who had averaged 28 points the previous four games, might have been enough to send Kansas to the round of 16. He didn’t get involved at all, hitting just one of six shots.
“I let a lot of people down,” Wiggins said. “If I would have played better, we wouldn’t be in this situation, you know?
“I blame myself for this.”
Jayhawks coach Bill Self expects Kansas to be back in this position soon, just not with Wiggins.
“You know, this isn’t the worst thing that’s going to happen to him in his life,” Self said. “If it is, he’s had a charmed life, there’s no question about that.
“I’m sad for our team and I’m sad for him that it wasn’t our day or his day today.”
Stanford’s front line might have thrown off Wiggins, who again didn’t have 7-foot center Joel Embiid with him because of a stress fracture in his back.
“We don’t go against many teams that are bigger than us,” Self said. “So they bothered him with length. And I think he had an off-game, too.”
Dwight Powell had 15 points and seven rebounds and Stanford wrapped up its second straight upset at the free throw line.
Chasson Randle added 13 points, six steals and four assists for the Cardinal (23-12), who advanced to the round of 16 for the first time since 2008 — also their last NCAA appearance. They beat No. 7 seed New Mexico on Friday.
Stanford will play 11th-seeded Dayton, which beat No. 3 Syracuse 55-53, in the round of 16 in Memphis, Tenn.
Kansas was the second No. 2 seed to be eliminated. Villanova lost 77-65 to seventh-seeded Connecticut in the East Regional.
Tarik Black had 18 points and six rebounds for the Jayhawks, but he fouled out with 5:25 to go.
“Besides Tarik, I don’t think we did a good job finishing at the rim,” forward Jamari Traylor said. “Those guys are pretty long.
“I don’t know what it was, but we just couldn’t buy a basket.”
Conner Frankamp had 12 points on four 3-pointers, the last two in the final 23 seconds to make it close after Stanford had pulled ahead by seven.
Stanford was 9 for 12 at the free throw line over the final 2:04 and needed all those points. Frankamp’s second 3-pointer narrowed the gap to 59-57 with 14.9 seconds left.
Anthony Brown hit one of two free throws with 12.9 seconds and Frankamp banged a third 3-point attempt off the glass near the buzzer in a bid to tie it.
“No, I knew when that left my hands I was off,” Frankamp said. “Didn’t get a great look at it.”
Kansas went to a full-court press down five points with about 11 minutes to play and forced five turnovers the next 6 minutes to tie it.
Kansas had been 0 for 10 from 3-point range for the tournament, seven of the misses against Eastern Kentucky, before Frankamp connected with 3:34 to go in the half.
Frankamp hit another one just before the halftime buzzer off a turnover to put the Jayhawks up 24-22, their first lead of the game. They trailed most of the first half against Eastern Kentucky, too, before pulling away for an 80-69 victory.
Powell hit his first shot on a drive after going 0 for 8 against New Mexico on Friday. He had 10 points before drawing his fourth foul early in the second half.