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RPI WATCH: 12/09/2009

Just for fun, I'm going to try something new today.

For those of you who don't visit the official site on a regular basis, I've included quick facts and quotes from the game after the jump, in addition to the latest RPIs and game results.

Just trying to add to the service here at BOTC. We want to be your one-stop shop, so to speak, for basketball information this season.

As for our competition, there only was good news last night. Dayton earned a really nice road win against a team with some cachet, and the Flyers steadily are working their way back toward the Top 25. In other A-10 action, obviously Xavier accommodated us nicely by losing. I'm sure the heat in their hotel rooms was just too high, though.

In the other game of note, Texas Tech survived what I thought for sure was a trap game at TCU. I was wondering how the Red Raiders would handle being ranked for the first time since 2005, but they overcame a halftime deficit to notch a nice road win. It's their best start in 80 years.

That said, I'm still a little bearish on Tech, since their only good win came at home, in overtime, over an overrated (man, that's a lot of "overs" in one sentence...) Washington team, and they haven't yet left the state of Texas to play a game. It certainly does look like they'll finish better than ninth or 10th, though.

Current Kansas State Record = 8-1

Current Kansas State RPI = 11

Current Kansas State SOS = 15

Great Wins (RPI 1-50) = Loyola, Dayton

Solid Wins (RPI 51-100) = IUPUI, Xavier

Bad Losses (RPI 100 or greater) = none

  • Loyola (5-2, 1-1) | RPI = 30
  • Western Illinois (3-5, 0-2) | RPI = 301
  • Boston (3-6) | RPI = 156
  • Ole Miss (7-1) | RPI = 18
  • Dayton (6-2) | RPI = 36: Win at George Mason (56-55)
  • IUPUI (7-2, 2-0) | RPI = 79
  • FHSU (6-1)
  • Washington State (6-2) | RPI = 153
  • Xavier (5-3) | RPI = 68: Loss at Kansas State (71-56)
  • No. 24 UNLV (7-0) | RPI = 12
  • Alabama (6-2) | RPI = 82
  • UAPB (0-6) | RPI = 273
  • Cleveland State (3-6, 0-2) | RPI = 222
  • South Dakota (5-3) | RPI = 143
  • Missouri (5-2) | RPI = 92
  • No. 16 Texas A&M (8-1) | RPI = 21
  • Colorado (6-3) | RPI = 249
  • No. 2 Texas (7-0) | RPI = 3
  • Oklahoma State (7-1) | RPI = 26
  • Baylor (7-1) | RPI = 105
  • No. 1 Kansas (7-0) | RPI = 39
  • Nebraska (5-2) | RPI = 112
  • Iowa State (6-3) | RPI = 187
  • Oklahoma (5-3) | RPI = 240
  • No. 23 Texas Tech (9-0) | RPI = 18: Win at TCU (80-70)

Xavier at Kansas State: Game Notes

  • Kansas State moved to 3-4 all-time against Xavier, including 2-0 at home... The Wildcats moved to 8-1 on the season, marking the first time since the 2004-05 season the Wildcats started a season 8-1... The Wildcats have now won 31 of their last 32 games at Bramlage Coliseum in the month of December dating back to the 2002-03 season, including 19 consecutive home wins since December 30, 2004... Kansas State moved to 251-88 (.740) all-time in Bramlage Coliseum... The paid attendance was a sold out 12,528.
  • The Wildcats' starting lineup Saturday night was junior guard Jacob Pullen, senior guard Denis Clemente, junior forward Dominique Sutton, junior forward Curtis Kelly and freshman forward Wally Judge... It marks the second time this season the team has used this starting combination... Pullen has now started in 43 straight games for the Wildcats, extending his streak as the team's leader in most consecutive games played to 76.
  • K-State led Xavier at the half, 30-20, marking the fifth consecutive contest the Wildcats have led after the first period... The Wildcats are 8-0 this season when leading their opponent at the half... The 20 points scored by the Musketeers in the opening half were the fewest points scored in the first half by a K-State opponent this season since Western Illinois also scored 20 on November 15th... Curtis Kelly led all scorers with 10 points at the break.
  • The Wildcats dominated the boards Tuesday night out-rebounding the Musketeers 46-33... K-State held Xavier to just eight rebounds in the first frame while pulling down 27 of its own.
  • The Wildcats defense held the Musketeers to just 29.4-percent (15-for-51) shooting from the field on Tuesday night, while pressuring them into 13 turnovers... It marks the third contest this season the Wildcats have held an opponent to under 30-percent shooting.
  • Jacob Pullen led the Wildcats in scoring on Tuesday night with 16 points, marking the 16th time in his career he has led the team in scoring... The Wildcats moved to 12-4 all-time when Pullen leads the team in scoring... He also recorded three assists and one steal in the contest.
  • Curtis Kelly added 15 points and a team-high nine rebounds while shooting 6-for-9 from the field... Kelly has now scored in double figures five times in his career.
  • In a career-high 19 minutes played, freshman Martavious Irving set a new career-high in scoring with eight points... He also moved the ball well dishing out three assists, while committing no turnovers.


What They Said

Head Coach Chris Mack
On tonight's performance...
"The rebounding margin at halftime was 27-8, and that really set the tone. Defensively we made stops, but unfortunately we could not get the defensive rebounds to end their possessions. Offensively I give K-State credit for pushing us out, a lot like Marquette did. We have talked the last couple of days about being strong with the ball, trying to get the ball below the foul line, but we could not do it and because of that we spent a ton of time in the first half without scoring any points."

On the play of Brad Redford...
"Brad shot the ball really well, which I expected him to do. He is one of the best shooters in the country, but he turned the ball over four times. It is one of those things where you have to be good in all areas. You don't have to be great, but you have to be good. One time he stepped on the sideline and another he threw the ball away right by our bench, which really hearts when you are in a possession game. Brad is a great kid and he did a really good job tonight, but the game just was not ours."

On halftime adjustments...
"We talked a lot about getting on the defensive glass. We were doing a really good job guarding their shooters, they were 1-for-9 from the three point line in the first half, but we could not secure defensive rebounds. I think it got a little bit better in the second half, but the tone was already set. They were foaming at the mouth to start the game, and we could not answer them."

Dante Jackson, Junior, Guard
On what coach said to the team after the game...
"We just have to give those guys credit; they out rebounded us in the first half. I really don't need to say much more than that. It came down to toughness, readiness, and I think our team, we weren't ready. They were ready, and they punched us in the mouth and just kept punching and punching and we kind of took it. It's kind of cliché because it happened to us before. Marquette did the same thing. I thought we responded and we didn't. It comes down to where this team wants to go."

On Jacob Pullen...
"I think he's a really good player. Really good player, I mean he's tough. He and Clemente both. They're going to win some games because of those two. They did a great job tonight and we wish those guys the best of luck."


What We Said

Head Coach Frank Martin
On how Jake and Denis didn't score much in the first half...
"The guys want to win. They do not care about that kind of stuff. I do not know why you guys get so wrapped up with who scores over who. You line up to play to win. You do not line up to make guys happy. That is meaningless. It is nothing about who responded to what Xavier tried to take away. The difference is that we have guys we can throw it to in the post and it relieves the pressure. Those two guys played a pretty good floor game considering Xavier pressures the heck out of the basketball. We were a little sluggish, a little slow, but we were mentally into it. Nine straight days of practicing and playing and we were not as crisp as we needed to be. But mentally we understood, so we stayed the course defensively in the first half which did not allow them to score either. Once the game continued to settle down and our guys did not fall down by themselves, the ball did not hit them in the head and we started passing and moving the ball a little bit, then we started making a couple of shots and it got us that little lead at halftime.  That is the challenge on this basketball team. We have other parts. I do not go into halftime talking about who is scoring and who is not. I could care less about who has how many shots. We are trying to win the game."

On his team's play...
"We were pretty good until we broke that lead and then Xavier just put their heads down and just drove the ball. We got caught standing around and not guarding and we fouled too much in the second half and that is something we have to clean up."

On his progression of the younger guys...
"It is growth. When you are two, three weeks into your season you are still trying to get everyone to understand how you are trying to play. We have different pieces to the puzzle. We have a lot of youth. We have guys who are thirstier guys playing big minutes for us. It's going to take time. "

Junior Guard Jacob Pullen
On finally getting a win against Xavier...
"Yeah we got a win. It could have been prettier. If we would have made more shots, we could have run them out of (the gym). We ended up grinding one out, but we take what we can get. It is still a win and it still feels better than losing to them two years in a row."

On finding consistency...
"I think that, in a way, we don't have to rely on one person to score, but we take what we can get each night, whether it is Curtis (Kelly), Jamar (Samuels), Denis (Clemente) or me. Jordan (Henriquez-Roberts) made some good shots tonight. That is the type of thing that makes a team talented and deep, and it helps them make a deep run into March."

On the improvements made this week in practice ...
"Practice has been consistently good.  We turned it up early today and other than that, it has been pretty consistent, as far as our effort. We had a few lackadaisical plays and a few offensive rebounds we gave up, but other than that I think the reason we won was just defense and rebounding the ball."

On the fan's support tonight...
"There is a blizzard out there tonight and we expected 10 people to show up. I would not have come to the game tonight if I wasn't playing. They could have watched it on TV like a lot of people did, but they came out and gave us that home-court advantage we needed tonight."

Sophomore Forward Jamar Samuels
On the teams' rebounding edge tonight ...
"Going into the game, our coaches said they (Xavier) were going to beat us up down there and we took that has motivation. We just came out and tried to get every single rebound that came off the rim."