KJ’s BB Newsletter                    January 13, 2001


I had the good fortune to run into Drake coach Kurt Kanaske at lunch Thursday noon.  I mentioned to him that I really liked his team this year, but they didn’t seem to have any luck.  He said, “We’ve actually had a lot of luck.  Unfortunately, though, it’s all been bad”.

  Well, the Dogs didn’t need a lot of luck that evening, beating Wichita State 90-86, after trailing by seven at the half.  The Wheatshockers are coached by former Jayhawker Mark Turgeon, who was an assistant under KU coach Roy Williams from 1989 to 1992, after playing there 1984-87. 

Drake scorched the nets (threes, twos and freethrows).  They made 17 of 23 three pointers, an astounding 74%.  Juco transfer Dontaie Smith poured in 7 of 8 while freshman Luke McDonald made 6 of 8 from outside the arc.  Those two led the Bulldogs in scoring with 30 and 20 points, respectively.  Overall, the Bulldogs shot 53.4% from the field and 78.6 from the freethrow line.  The Shockers weren’t bad either, making 13 of 22 threes. 

Senior guard Lamont Evans had a good all-around evening with 14 points, 10 assists and 3 steals. This was a much-needed win for the Dogs, who had previously been beaten badly by Wichita State nine days earlier.  Drake now sits at 5-7, 1-2 in the MVC.  They entertain SW Missouri State on Saturday evening in the Knapp Center.

The same evening, the Iowa Hawkeyes took care of business at Carver-Hawkeye, strong-arming No. 7 Illinois 78-62.  The Hawks were led by transfer Luke Recker who rained in 27 points, along with six rebounds, three assists and two steals.

The Illini are coached by Bill Self who was an assistant at Kansas in 1986 before taking over the Tulsa program.  One of Illinois’ better players is Brian Cook, son of former KU All-American Norm Cook (1974-76).

The Hawkeyes are now 13-2 with a perfect 2-0 record in the conference.  They take on the 3-0 Purdue Boilermakers in West Lafayette on Saturday.

Earlier in the week, the ISU Cyclones got bushwhacked by Okie State.  The Aggies were inaugurating their newly remodeled Gallagher-Iba Arena.  Even though the referees, I believe, were trying to assure a win for Sutton’s troops, All-American Jamaal Tinsley hit a long three-pointer to tie the game in regulation, sending the game into overtime.  However, the Cowboys played inspired ball in the extra period to carry them over the then 18th-ranked Clones 88-80.

Guard Kantrail Horton scored 19 points to lead the Clones.  He’s been hot of late, just coming off a week where he was named Big 12 Player of the Week.   ISU, now 13-2, takes on Missouri in Columbia on Saturday afternoon.