Down goes No. 1: West Virginia trips up Kansas 74-63

BY foxsports • January 12, 2016

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. -- Jaysean Paige scored 26 points, Devin Williams had 17 points and 12 rebounds, and No. 11 West Virginia beat top-ranked Kansas 74-63 on Tuesday night.

West Virginia (15-1, 4-0 Big 12) is off to its best start since 1982, when it started 24-1.

Perry Ellis scored 21 points for Kansas (14-2, 3-1). The Jayhawks committed a season-high 22 turnovers, shot 42 percent for the game and was held to its lowest point total of the season.

West Virginia fans stormed the court and sang John Denver's "Country Roads" after the Mountaineers' first win over a top-ranked team in 33 years.

With snowy conditions and traffic gridlock outside, Kansas arrived at the WVU Coliseum from their nearby hotel only an hour before the game with the help of a police escort.

It didn't get any easier for the Jayhawks on the court.

They are the fourth No. 1 to lose this season joining North Carolina, Kentucky and Michigan State.

West Virginia opened a 39-27 halftime lead by forcing mistakes, going hard after offensive rebounds and doing unusually well at the free throw line.

Ellis scored 10 of the Jayhawks' first 15 points of the second half, including a dunk at the midway point to cut the deficit to 50-44. But Kansas went more than 4 minutes between baskets and could get no closer.

West Virginia didn't need to be stellar from the field -- the Mountaineers shot just 33 percent (19 of 57) and made just one field goal over the final 5 minutes. But they made up for that from the line, where they entered the game shooting 66 percent.

West Virginia went 12 of 16 from the line down the stretch. Williams kept hitting free throws and kept grabbing missed shots -- a formula that has turned out pretty well so far for the Mountaineers.

Williams had his seventh double-double of the season but the first over a span of seven games.

He got plenty of help Tuesday from Paige, who made 14 of 17 free throws for the game.

Jevon Carter finished with 10 points for West Virginia.

Frank Mason III added 12 points and Wayne Selden Jr. had 11 for Kansas.


Kansas: The Jayhawks dropped their third straight to the Mountaineers in Morgantown. Last year, Ellis caught a long pass and missed a layup off the back of the rim just before the final buzzer, and the Jayhawks lost 62-61. In 2014, Andrew Wiggins returned to the state where he played prep school. The freshman led a furious comeback with 41 points, but the Jayhawks couldn't make up a 25-point deficit and lost 92-86.

West Virginia: The Mountaineers improved to 4-7 all-time against top-ranked teams. The previous time they did it was against UNLV in February 1983. ... Guard Daxter Miles Jr. returned to the starting lineup after missing the first game of his career with an ankle sprain.


Kansas: Hosts TCU on Saturday.

West Virginia: Is at No. 2 Oklahoma on Saturday.

share story