Scouting Longwood

News, notes and quotes on KU's season-opening matchup with Longwood tonight at 7:00 (CT) in Allen Fieldhouse while thinking the Jayhawks win this one, 102-68.


Longwood, located in Farmville, Va. (enrollment of 4,098), returns eight letterwinners and one starter from last season's 12-19 team. The Lancers, an independent who became NCAA Division I eligible in 2007, also welcome six newcomers.

Senior guard Aaron Mitchell is the returning starter who averaged nine points, 3.5 rebounds and 3.3 assists per game last season. Other top returnees include junior center and First Team All-Independent Selection Antwan Carter (14.6 ppg, 8.5 rpg, 10 double-doubles) and junior guard Martiz Washington (8.3 ppg, 2.3 rpg, 1.9 apg). Redshirt junior guard Durann Neil, who sat out last season due to a preseason injury, averaged 7.1 points and 3.9 assists as a starter in 2008-09, while senior guard Earl Gee played in all 31 games last season and averaged 11.6 minutes, 3.1 points, 1.1 rebounds, and 1.7 assists.

Jeremiah Bowman is the lone junior college transfer out of Harcum JC in Philadelphia. The 6-2 guard is Harcum's career leader in assists (302) who averaged 11.8 points, 5.3 boards, and 5.5 assists last year. He helped lead Harcum to a 26-3 record and No. 3 final ranking in the NJCAA Division I Poll.

The Lancers have an impressive schedule this season. In addition to Kansas, Longwood faces ACC members Virginia Tech and Maryland, and Big East schools Marquette and Seton Hall. The Lancers are also competing in the exempt IBN Sports Las Vegas Classic, which includes games at New Mexico and Colorado.

"We're very excited about all the facets of this year's schedule," eighth-year head coach Mike Gillian said. "Like we normally have, there is a mix of high-profile opponents, a significant number of home games, and the continuation of some rivalries we are building with in-state opponents. This schedule presents some great challenges for us, but nothing we haven't faced before."

Gillian expects his players, including the 6-6 Carter, to rise to the challenge.

"The sky is the limit for Antwan Carter for the next two years," Gillian told "He has matured to the point where he understands how much it takes to actually prepare to be great, which is well before the opening tip for the first game. He arrived at Longwood two years ago with the ability to be a fantastic college player and he has been a most important contributor to our success in that time. With the positive strides he has made, I think it is reasonable to expect great things out of him. Consider the fact that Antwan averaged close to 15 points and nine rebounds as a sophomore last year. In all of college basketball, there were only 21 players who averaged a double-double for the entire season. I believe 12 of them have departed the college game and that leaves plenty of room for Antwan to jump right into that exclusive club."


"The first game to me is always tough because they (the opponent) may do something they haven't done in years past," KU coach Bill Self said. "We have no tape on them except from last year. They're well coached and return some good players from last year. And, like us, they're likely waiting to see if some of their newcomers come through."


KU looks to improve its defense against Longwood after its two exhibition games versus Washburn and Emporia State. Washburn shot 50 percent from the field in KU's exhibition opener, including a scorching 56.5 percent in the second half. ESU, meanwhile, shot 52 percent in the second half on Tuesday.

"Defensively we've got to get better," senior guard Tyrel Reed said. "I've definitely got to be better on defense. I've got to slide my feet and keep my man in front of me. I think if we can just lock in defensively it will take care of any other problems. If we lock in for 40 minutes defensively I don't think there's a team out there that can beat us. Defense is coach's forte and he always instills that in us. So if we just keep getting better defensively we'll be fine."


This is the first meeting between the two schools in men's basketball. Other first-meeting games this season for KU include North Texas, Texas A&M-Corpus Christi, Colorado State and Texas-Arlington.


*KU has won 37 straight home openers at Allen Fieldhouse dating back to the 1973-74 Final Four season. Since 2001-02, Kansas has won its last eight consecutive season openers.

*Kansas has won 59 straight games at Allen Fieldhouse, the nation's longest homecourt wining streak. The 59 straight wins rank second on KU's all-time home win streak list and is the longest since the all-time high of 62 from 1993-98. The current streak started Feb. 7, 2007 with a 97-70 victory over K-State. KU last lost in the Phog on Feb. 3, 2007 against Texas A&M, 69-66.

*KU has a sterling 113-6 record (95 percent) under Self at Allen Fieldhouse. Top Stories