When trying to think of an appropriate metaphor for LaGerald Vick and his time at Kansas, the answer was simple: a rollercoaster.
There have been ups and downs. There have been unforeseen twists and turns. There has been cheering and screaming…you get the picture.
Thankfully, LaGerald is on the up-and-up right now and that means good news for the Jayhawks.
During KU’s 10-0 start to the season, LaGerald Vick was 34 for 63 (54 percent) from 3-point range – including a Kansas record for most consecutive 3-pointers without a miss (8) against Vermont. He was also the leading scorer for KU in 4 out of 10 of those games while averaging 17.1 points per contest.
However, during KU’s 3-2 stretch to end December and begin Big 12 play, Vick was only 9 for 36 (25 percent) from 3-point range and averaged 9.6 points per game.
In the last two games against Baylor and Texas, both which resulted in wins, LaGerald Vick was 11 for 16 from 3-point range (68.8 percent) and averaged 19.5 points per game.
For better or worse, he is KU’s most lethal 3-point shooting threat.
Quentin Grimes hasn’t lived up to the preseason expectations. He currently owns a 30.3 3-point shooting percentage to go along with a lackluster 8.7 points per game.
Devon Dotson for as talented as he is, is more of a slash-and-drive scorer as opposed to an outside shooter. He averages just two 3-point attempts per game.
So what does this all mean? It means KU is best when Vick is at his best. And Vick is at his best when he is knocking down 3’s.
If this KU team wants to avoid being the team that ends the conference winning streak and have a chance to cut down the nets in April, they need Superman, not Clark Kent. Vick doesn’t necessarily need to lead the team in scoring, Dedric Lawson can handle that most games, but they do need him to take smart shots and be a consistent 3-point threat.
Most importantly, they need him to lead.
There is no more Perry Ellis or Frank Mason or Devonte Graham. He’s the one with the most experience playing in March. As a senior he’s been in big games, in big moments, and he needs to be an example on and off the court.
That means no suspensions. That means no being late and getting benched for two games. That means being vocal in the huddle, keeping the younger players under control, and taking zero games off.
If KU gets this version of LaGerald Vick, they may reach the Final Four for the second straight season – something that hasn’t been done at Kansas since 2002-03.