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|Stephen F. Austin Lumberjacks||TBA||TBA|
These teams rarely face each other, which makes this an interesting matchup. Kansas is a very impressive team with many talented players, but Stephen F. Austin is playing well after not making March Madness this year. They did lose their last game to UL-Monroe, but they won the previous four.
Kansas is having no trouble scoring the ball this year and is fifth in the nation with their 86.4 points per game. That will be the key to them winning this game.
Kansas beats Stephen F. Austin 82-69.
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|Stephen F. Austin||Head-to-Head||Kansas|
|Kyle Keller||Head Coach||Bill Self|
|8-3 (0-0, 1st in WAC)||Standing||8-1 (0-0, 1st in Big 12)|
|Leader (Per Game)|
|Gavin Kensmil (16.2)||PPG||Ochai Agbaji (22.4)|
|Gavin Kensmil (7.3)||RPG||Christian Braun (6.8)|
|David Kachelries (4.6)||APG||Jajuan Harris Jr. (3.9)|
|Jaylin Jackson-Posey (2.0)||SPG||Christian Braun (1.4)|
|Sadaidriene Hall (1.5)||BPG||David McCormack (1.7)|
|Gavin Kensmil (.629)||FG%||Christian Braun (.621)|
|Nana Antwi-Boasiako (.667)||3P%||Ochai Agbaji (.491)|
Winning this game will be quite a task for this Stephen F. Austin. They are 8-3, but they are yet to face a ranked opponent. The Lumberjacks score well and shoot well. The problem is they do not score as well as shoot as well as the Jayhawks. Do you see where I am going with this?
The Lumberjacks need to step up their shooting against this high-powered Kansas team. Part of that shooting comes down to free throws. They are hitting 65.9% of their free-throw attempts (only a little below Kansas’ 68.9%) but need to hit at least 75% of their free-throws in this game to keep it close.
Of course, the Lumberjacks also need to play stellar defense, but that will be very difficult against the skilled Jayhawks. That is why it is more important for them to focus on shooting well.
The Jayhawks are very likely to win this game. They have three players scoring over 10 points a game, one of which, Ochai Agbaji, is the leading scorer in the NCAA. Their offensive firepower is evident, but the defensive skill has gone unnoticed.
Kansas is giving up 67 points per game. It is not a great defensive statistic, but it is pretty good. The Jayhawks have not had the easiest non-conference schedule, so giving up 67 points per game leaves room for improvement but is pretty impressive.
Kansas needs to keep shooting the ball and passing to the open man. If they bring the same defensive intensity that they brought against Missouri, they should win this game handily and send Stephen F. Austin home with their tail between their legs.
David Kachelries is not Stephen F. Austin’s top scorer, but he is a playmaker. He averages 11.5 points, 4.6 assists, and 1.4 steals a game. Kachelries is also a good shooter. He shoots 46.2% from the field, 39% from the three-point line, and 76.5% from the free-throw line. Those numbers would not be considered very impressive by NBA standards, but by college standards, those are solid and efficient.
Kachelries is the Lumberjack’s key player because he scores and creates opportunities for his teammates. The 6’1” senior guard will need those two skill sets to be on full display against Kansas. Kansas guard Remy Martin will probably have the task of guarding Kachelries. Remy Marting is 6’0”. I only say that because Kachelries has a size disadvantage against Martin and can easily attack the rim.
Kachelries will need to have one of his best games of the season against Kansas. He will need to step up all of his major skills sets and be a real floor general. If he does, the Lumberjacks might have a chance to win.
Guard Christian Braun has massively stepped up his game this year. He is playing a similar amount of minutes as last season but has improved his scoring by over 6.5 points per game. He is also getting 1.6 more rebounds per game and almost one more assist and block per game.
Those stats are great, but Braun’s shooting has been the real difference this season. He hit 38% of his shots from the field last year. He responded this season by hitting 62.1% of his shots.
Braun has become a leader for the Jayhawks and does many different things on the floor. He will continue to need to do so against Stephen F. Austin, and the Jayhawks may run away with the game. If the Stephen F. Austin defense fails to stop Braun, this game will get real bad for them real quick.
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|Stephen F. Austin vs No. 7 Kansas Information|
|What||Stephen F. Austin vs No. 7 Kansas|
|Where||Allen Fieldhouse, Lawrence, Kansas|
|When||Saturday, December 18, 5:00 PM EST|
|How to Watch||BIG 12 Network, ESPN+|
Max Heering graduated from the University of Kansas Sport Management program in May 2020. Max follows and writes about the NBA, NFL, MLB, NHL, MLS, college football, and college basketball. In his free time, you can catch Max draining threes on the basketball court. Email: [email protected]More info on Max Heering
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