Kansas men’s basketball was a little banged up against TCU, but efficient offense and contributions from bench players helped the Jayhawks secure a much needed 93-64 bounce back road win Tuesday night.
Senior leader and point guard Marcus Garrett — who is battling a head injury after being elbowed by Texas senior forward Jericho Sims last Saturday — was ruled out pregame for Kansas. Junior guard Ochai Agbaji was also reported to be a little nicked up with a hamstring injury, but still played 30 minutes against TCU.
“Not to be full strength and have the guys kind of rally around that after what happened Saturday, I thought it was terrific,” Kansas coach Bill Self said after the game. “I thought we played great.”
This gave way to big minutes for redshirt freshman guard Dajuan Harris, who was rewarded his first career start with Garrett and freshman guard Bryce Thompson out. Harris took advantage of this opportunity, finishing with seven points and a career-high seven assists in 27 minutes.
“I thought [Harris] did a lot of really good things,” Self said. “He got the ball where it needed to go and it definitely looked like he belonged."
Harris was a key ball handler in a Kansas offense that looked much improved from its last game against Texas. Self said before Tuesday's game his team has failed to get easy baskets this season, but the Jayhawks were able to flip that script with points off dunks and 14 points in transition Tuesday.
“We got the ball where we needed it to go, we played inside out a lot and we shot the ball well enough that they had to guard us and then we were able to drive lanes,” Self said. “I thought our half court offense was as good as we’ve looked all year long. Guys ran offense to score.”
Kansas was extremely efficient, shooting 35-for-62 from the field and 8-for-20 from three-point range. The Jayhawks also posted a season-high in assists with 21 and finished with five players in double figures.
Junior forward David McCormack had a breakout game, leading Kansas in scoring with 20 points and collecting eight rebounds.
“He’s a good player, and he hasn’t played his best [this season],” Self said. “The way he scored, his activity level, his blocking and altering — I thought he was dominant tonight."
Sophomore forward Tristan Enaruna shined with his extended playing time for a career-high 12 points in 17 minutes. Agbaji finished with the second-most points for Kansas with 19, followed by redshirt freshman forward Jalen Wilson with 16 points, eight rebounds and six assists.
“Everybody at some point in the game got into a rhythm and got into a flow,” McCormack said after the game. “The ball moved. I think that was a key emphasis today as well being down players, instead of depending on certain players, everyone had the opportunity to show what they can do.”
Kansas will look to get healthy after this win before its next home game against Oklahoma Saturday. Tipoff is set for 3:30 p.m.