No. 2 Jayhawks slam Tigers in road win

Marcus Morris shook off a scary collision with a scorer’s table to

notch a double-double and No. 2 Kansas used two big runs in each

half to beat Missouri 77-56 on Saturday.

Kansas (29-2, 15-1 Big 12) led by 16 after a 20-4 run in the

first half, then put together another 20-4 spurt after Morris’

injury to beat its biggest rival for the eighth time in nine games.

The Jayhawks shot 52 percent after a shaky start and will head into

next week’s Big 12 tournament as the No. 1 seed and one victory

from joining Kentucky and North Carolina in the 2,000-win club.

Missouri (22-9, 10-6) struggled with Kansas’ depth and size

inside for the second time this season, giving up 42 points in the

paint and 17 more rebounds in its final home game. Kim English had

16 points led the Tigers, who were 3 of 22 from 3-point range.

Morris had 12 points and 10 rebounds, Tyshawn Taylor scored

all of his 13 points in the second half to go with six assists and

five rebounds, and Sherron Collins added 12 points for Kansas.

The Jayhawks wrapped up their sixth straight Big 12

regular-season title with an emotional win over rival Kansas State

on Wednesday night in Collins’ final game at Allen Fieldhouse.

That left the Jayhawks with two days to get ready for another

rival.

Kansas manhandled Missouri the last meeting, holding the

Tigers to 27 percent shooting and grabbing a 56-28 rebounding

advantage in an 84-65 rout.

Back at home, where they were 16-1 this season, the Tigers

seemed ready for Kansas.

Riding the emotion of Senior Day — J.T. Tiller, Zaire Taylor

and Keith Ramsey were honored before the game — Missouri swarmed

the Jayhawks early, getting them to force up shots against pressure

and breaking out for easy baskets.

The euphoria didn’t last long.

Working the ball inside, Kansas got six straight points from

Markieff Morris, then seven straight from Marcus. The inside

success opened up the outside and the Jayhawks started making shots

from everywhere.

Collins put the finishing touches on a 20-4 half-closing run,

scoring the final eight points to put the Jayhawks up 40-24.

Missouri still had some fight, using its defense to create

turnovers and easy shots to open with a 16-4 run, pulling 44-40 on

Tiller’s three-point play on a hard drive.

It got worse for Kansas seconds later when Marcus Morris

slammed his head on a courtside table while scrambling for a loose

ball with Missouri’s Marcus Denmon. Morris lay on the floor for

several minutes then gingerly walked off the court to the locker

room.

The Jayhawks rallied after seeing their teammate go down,

reeling off another 20-4 run that included consecutive 3-pointers

by Tyrel Reed. By the time Morris returned with just over 5 minutes

left, Kansas was well in control.