Nov 26, 2020 10:38 AM

🏀 Game Preview: KU vs. Gonzaga

Posted Nov 26, 2020 10:38 AM

LAWRENCE, Kan. – The No. 6/5 Kansas Jayhawks will open their 2020-21 season on Thursday, November 26, when they take on the No. 1/2 Gonzaga Bulldogs in the Rocket Mortgage Fort Myers Tip-Off in Fort Myers, Florida.

The game will tip-off at 12:30 p.m. CT, from inside Suncoast Credit Union Arena on FOX.

The season-opener between the Jayhawks and the Bulldogs proves to be a showdown on Thursday, as Kansas and Gonzaga rank 1-2 in total wins over the last 10 seasons, with Gonzaga leading the way with 308 wins, followed by Kansas’ 299.

Kansas has won its last two meetings against No.1-ranked teams, including last year’s 64-61 win at Baylor on February 22 and the 77-75 victory over Duke on November 15, 2016 in the Champions Classic at Madison Square Garden. All-time, KU is 9-16 against No. 1-ranked opponents, including 4-2 under head coach Bill Self.

The Jayhawks enter Thursday’s contest ranked No. 6 in the preseason Associated Press poll and No. 5 in the USA Today Coaches’ top-25 poll. The Jayhawks have been ranked sixth or higher in each of the last eight preseason AP poll and in the top-five in each of the last seven polls.

Thursday’s game will be just the second in the series history between the Jayhawks and the Bulldogs, with KU taking the penultimate matchup, 80-66 in Lawrence on November 13, 1998.

The Jayhawks have won 16-straight games dating back to last season, which is the third-longest active streak entering the 2020-21 season behind Dayton (20) and New Mexico State (19).

Kansas’ season-opener against Gonzaga will air live on FOX beginning at 12:30 p.m., CT, with Adam Amin (Play-by-Play) and Bill Raftery (Analyst) on the call. The game can also be heard across the Jayhawk Radio Network with Brian Hanni (Play-by-Play) and Greg Gurley (Analyst) calling the action.

Prior to this weekend’s action, Kansas head coach Bill Self, senior guard Marcus Garrett and sophomore guard Christian Braun met with the media.

The Opening Tip

  1. No. 6/5 Kansas faces No. 1/2 Gonzaga in the 2020-21 season opener at the Fort Myers Tip-Off, Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 26, at 12:30 p.m. (Central) on FOX. Kansas is coming off a 28-3 season in which it was ranked No. 1 in both the final Associated Press and USA TODAY Coaches’ polls. Gonzaga was No. 2 in both final polls.
  2. Kansas and Gonzaga rank 1-2 in wins over the last 10 seasons (2010-11 to 2019-20). Gonzaga leads the way with 308, while Kansas is next at 299. Kentucky is third at 295. Since 2003-04, the Bill Self’s first season at KU, Kansas has an NCAA-leading 501 wins, while Gonzaga and Duke are tied for second at 494.
  3. Kansas has won its last two meetings against No. 1-ranked teams with last year’s win at Baylor (64-61, 2.22.20) and versus Duke, 77-75, on 11.15.16 in the Champions Classic at Madison Square Garden. KU is 9-16 all-time against No. 1-ranked foes, including 4-2 under head coach Bill Self.
  4. In facing No. 1 Gonzaga, Kansas is 18-7 against teams ranked in the Associated Press top five in the Bill Self era. In that span, KU is 15-5 when ranked lower than its opponent and 3-2 when ranked higher.
  5. Kansas enters the season ranked No. 6 in the preseason Associated Press and No. 5 USA TODAY Coaches’ top-25 polls. The Jayhawks have been ranked sixth or higher in each of the last eight preseason AP polls and in the top five in the last seven coaches’ polls.
  6. Kansas finished 2019-20 winning its final 16 games. The Jayhawks’ 16 straight victories rank third entering 2020-21 behind Dayton (20) and New Mexico State (19).
  7. KU has been ranked in each of the last 221 AP polls dating back to 2008-09. The 221-consecutive weeks in the polls is the longest active streak in the nation. KU holds the same streak in the coaches’ poll at 228.
  8. Kansas men’s basketball will be wearing a patch that reads “United We Stand” signifying its stance on the recent social injustice in the United States.
  9. Former Kansas guard Evan Manning, who’s father also played at Kansas, is a graduate assistant coach at Gonzaga. Evan played at KU from 2013-16, while his father, Danny (1985-88 at KU) led KU to the 1988 NCAA National title.