Jayhawks topple Blue Devils
JOHN NADEL, AP Sports Writer
ANAHEIM, Calif. -- Roy Williams got that elusive victory over Coach K -- thanks to Nick Collison.
Collison scored a career-high 33 points and had 19 rebounds to lead Kansas to a 69-65 victory over Duke in the semifinals of the West Regional on Thursday night.
A 6-foot-9 senior, Collison scored seven straight points to give second-seeded Kansas a 63-57 lead with 5:41 remaining, and the Jayhawks were on top the rest of the way.
Kansas (28-7) will face Arizona on Saturday with the winner going to the Final Four. The top-seeded Wildcats (28-3) beat fifth-seeded Notre Dame 88-71 earlier Thursday at Anaheim Arena.
Williams, in his 15th year as coach of the Jayhawks, was 0-3 in matchups with Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski, including a 72-65 defeat in the national championship game 12 years ago.
Jones led third-seeded Duke (26-7) with 23 points and seven rebounds. Daniel Ewing added 13 points and Chris Duhon scored 12. Freshman J.J. Redick shot 2-of-16 in scoring only five points.
The game matched two of college basketball's top coaches and elite programs. Duke has been to 13 Final Fours -- nine under Krzyzewski -- and Kansas to 11 -- three under Williams.
Krzyzewski's 60 NCAA tournament wins are the second-most ever behind the 65 of former North Carolina coach Dean Smith.
Williams, an assistant under Smith before taking the Jayhawks' job in 1988, has a 32-13 record in the tournament. His .806 winning percentage (416-100) in 15 years at Kansas is the best among active coaches with six or more years of experience and third-best ever.
Krzyzewski is 663-274, including 590-175 in 23 years at Duke.
The game didn't reflect the fact that the Kansas entered averaging 83 and Duke almost 82, making them two of the six highest-scoring teams in the country.
Aaron Miles scored with 52.7 seconds left to give Kansas a 67-61, and Michael Lee added a free throw with 34.1 seconds to play for a seven-point lead.
Dahntay Jones made two baskets for Duke before Miles made a free throw with 16.8 seconds left to complete the scoring.
Keith Langford added 13 points for the Jayhawks. Kirk Hinrich, averaging 17.5 points, shot 1-of-9 for two points, but it didn't matter. Collison made 14-of-22 shots -- mostly from inside.
Jones scored five points to spark a 9-1 run to start the second half to put Duke on top 44-36. But the Jayhawks scored the next nine points -- four by Collison -- for a one-point lead.
Neither team led by more than two points after that until Collison got going. He wound up scoring 12 straight points for his team.
Hinrich scored his only points with 12:25 left on a short jumper to tie it at 49.
It was 35-all at halftime despite the fact that Hinrich didn't score and Redick shot 1-of-6 for three points. Redick, called the nation's best freshman by Krzyzewski, was averaging 15.3 points.
Lacking in depth to begin with in part because of a season-ending shoulder injury to starter Wayne Simien last month, Kansas received a blow when center Jeff Graves picked up his third foul midway through the first half.
But his teammates picked up the slack after Ewing and Redick made 3-pointers to give Duke a 22-13 lead -- largest of the game for either team.
It was 27-20 when Kansas went on a 15-8 run to finish the half.