Nov. 28, 2007
LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) -- Brandon Rush scored 17 points and No. 4 Kansas routed Florida Atlantic 87-49 Wednesday night, a rude welcome back to Allen Fieldhouse for Rex Walters.
One of the more popular players of the Roy Williams era at Kansas, Walters is in his second season as head coach at Florida Atlantic. The Owls (1-6) were without their leading scorer on the court where their coach once starred.
Mario Chalmers hit two 3-pointers in a 12-0 run that put Kansas firmly in control at 32-13. Darnell Jackson, making his first start of the season, had 13 points and four rebounds and Darrell Arthur had 12 points for the Jayhawks (6-0).
Several signs welcoming Walters back popped up in the crowd. He was a top player on two Big Eight championship teams and helped lead the Jayhawks to the 1993 Final Four.
Carderro Nwoji and Sanchez Hughley each had 14 points for Florida Atlantic. Guard Paul Graham, who is averaging 17.8 points per game, has missed two games on indefinite suspension for undisclosed reasons.
For the Owls, it was the finale of an exhausting start to a season that had them playing their first six games on the road. They'll finally get a home game when they host McNeese State on Saturday.
After posting a 38-19 halftime lead, the Jayhawks quickly raised the margin to 49-25 with a 9-2 run capped by Rush's alley oop dunk. It was 52-28 when Jackson and Rush keyed a 13-0 run. Sasha Kaun hit a three-point play, then Jackson made two free throws and a 3-pointer followed by a 3-pointer from Rush.
Not all the outstanding plays belonged to the Jayhawks. Early in the first half, Rush stole the ball at midcourt from Xavier Perkins and drove in for what seemed to be shaping up as an uncontested dunk. But the 6-foot-4 Perkins managed to get in front of the 6-6 Rush and rejected the shot just as Rush was going to slam the ball into the basket.
Owls center Carlos Monroe, their No. 2 scorer averaging 17.2 points, did not score until getting his first basket in the opening minute of the second half. The 6-8 junior wound up with four points on 1-for-8 shooting after getting 26 points and 13 rebounds Monday night against Missouri-Kansas City.