After a sluggish first half that looked to result in an upset, No. 1 Kansas rallied from a 12-point deficit in the last twelve minutes of regulation to beat Oklahoma on Senior Night at Allen Fieldhouse.
Seniors Frank Mason, Landen Lucas and Tyler Self played their final game at home–but freshman Josh Jackson, who likely played his last game at The Phog, sparked the Kansas comeback. Jackson’s layup with less than seven minutes to go brought the Jayhawks within one possession at 58-56.
A series of back-to-back threes by Devonte’ Graham then launched KU to a 62-58 lead.
“[Graham] was huge for us down the stretch,” Mason said. “He hit some contested threes that we really needed and we kept believing in each other.”
A pair of buckets from Mason and another three-pointer by Graham further extended the Jayhawk lead. The night capped off with an alley-oop executed by Lucas from a pass by Mason, which lead to a 73-62 final and avoiding a loss upon receiving the No. 1 ranking in the country.
“We just got the No. 1 ranking in the country–I think we were playing for that most of all tonight,” Self said. “We don’t want to lose that the first night.”
The Big 12 champion Jayhawks finished the game on a 31-11 run, backed in part by Mason’s game-high 23 points in his last appearance in Lawrence.
“[Allen Fieldhouse] means everything to me.” Mason said. “Kansas has changed my life and I’m thankful for this opportunity and it’s something I’ll remember every day for the rest of my life.”
No. 1 Kansas looks to wrap up the regular season against Oklahoma State on Saturday.