No. 14 Kansas routs Texas behind Withey, Releford
LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) — It couldn't have been a more festive night at Allen Fieldhouse.
Kansas center Jeff Withey became the Big 12's career leader in blocked shots. Mario Chalmers had his jersey raised to the rafters at halftime. More than a dozen former players made their way back to the old barn, and even the coach's son, Tyler Self, got into the scoring column.
It didn't end there: Ben McLemore threw down a jaw-dropping 360 dunk in the closing minutes, and the No. 14 Jayhawks put together a stifling defensive effort in a 73-47 rout of Texas that kept the eight-time defending conference champions tied for first place in the Big 12.
"There's not a team in America that has fun every time they go play, at the same level, the same consistent level," said Self, whose team rebounded from a three-game losing streak by blowing out No. 10 Kansas State on Monday night and then thrashing the struggling Longhorns.
"We were duds there for three games," Self said, "but I think we've got our personality back."
The Jayhawks got some help from some famous alumni.
Thomas Robinson and Tyshawn Taylor, who keyed their run to last year's national title game, have been in touch with the team. So have other players, including Chalmers, who returned to have his No. 15 jersey hoisted up among names such as Wilt Chamberlain and Paul Pierce.
"It's definitely good to have them back, our old teammates and stuff," said Withey, who had 15 points and 11 rebounds against the Longhorns. "It's fun to perform for those guys."
Withey's block in the second half gave him 265 for his career, moving past former Texas star Chris Mihm for the Big 12 record. The reigning Big 12 defensive player of the year even had four steals while making life miserable for the young, undersized Longhorns.
Withey had plenty of help, though.
Travis Releford also scored 15 points, McLemore had 13 and Elijah Johnson finished with 12 for the Jayhawks (21-4, 9-3), who have won eight of their last nine against the Longhorns.
"I told Bill, the most disappointing thing is he tried to run the score up with his son," said Texas coach Rick Barnes, joking about the circus-like shot Tyler Self scored late in the game.
Myck Kabongo, in his second game back from a 23-game suspension, was held to 13 points by the nation's top field-goal percentage defense. The Longhorns' sophomore guard missed his first seven shots and committed three turnovers, his only real success coming at the foul line.
Texas wound up shooting 21.8 percent from the field and 2 of 21 from beyond the arc.
"It really came down to execution," said the Longhorns' Ioannis Papapetrou. "I have a pretty good feeling we had a lot of open shots. We missed a lot of them."
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