Just over a week ago Kansas State was on top of the basketball world after beating the top ranked Sooners at home. Since then they have lost two winnable games, and now head into Fort Worth to take on the bottom dwelling Horned Frogs. Tonight's game is a must win for Kansas State. Let's jump in and see what type of team the 'Cats will face tonight.
Know Your Opponent
TCU (11-14, 2-10 Conference, #132 Kenpom #149 RPI) is not a good basketball team. They rank last in the conference by any ranking system, and have only won twice in the Big 12 the most surprising win being a home victory against Texas. TCU tends to slow down the pace playing just below the average D-1 adjusted tempo. Offensively they are terrible ranking 316 in eFG% at 45.7. The best part of their offense is their three point shooting, however even that is a paltry 32.9% (still 4% better than K-State who shoots 28.8%). If TCU hopes to win they will need to get to the foul line where they score almost a quarter of their points.
On defense TCU performs well forcing turnovers on 21.5% of opponents possessions and limiting opponents to only 32.1% from the three point line. Given K-State's propensity to turn the ball over, and throw bricks at the backboard from three, TCU should be in a good spot when trying to defend the Wildcats. Their biggest weakness is fouling too much, something Kansas State can take advantage of with hard drives to the basket.
Keep a close watch on:
Malique Trent. Trent is tied for the team lead in points, lead TCU in assists with 3 per game. Most of his damage occurs on drives to the basket and getting fouled. He shots better than 50% from the field, though his three point shooting is an abysmal 21.1%. Trent pairs well with his back court mate, Chauncey Collins, our other player to watch.
Chauncey Collins. Collins matches Trent's team lead in points with 10.9 per game, and while he doesn't do much assisting he hits the glass well for a guard averaging 3.2 per game. Collins is also TCU's three point specialist hitting 41% from deep. K-State better keep a man on him when Trent drives, because Collins will knock down the kick out three if given enough space.
F Wesley Iwundu, 6-7 210 Jr
F Dean Wade, 6-10 225 Fr
F Stephen Hurt, 6-11 265 Sr
G Justin Edwards, 6-4 200 Sr
G Carlbe Ervin II, 6-3 205 Jr
F Vladimir Brodziansky, 6-10 215 So.
F Chris Washburn, 6-8 240 Jr.
F Brandon Parrish, 6-6 210 Jr
G Chauncey Collins, 6-0 180 So
G Malique Trent, 6-2 185 So.
3 Keys 1 Key To The Game
1. Find a way to win
This is a must win for Kansas State. Losing on the road to Oklahoma State was bad, but losing on the road to a 2-10 TCU team is frankly unfathomable. This is a rebound game for the 'Cats, but they cannot come out with the same level of apathy they displayed during the Baylor game and the OSU game. Focus on driving to the rim, converting your free throws, and defending hard and K-State should finally snap their road game losing streak.
All stats by http://www.kenpom.com, or by the respective university's sports information.