Recent history suggests that the Oklahoma Sooners could be in for a rough night at Bramlage. Lon Kruger’s bunch has lost 5 straight in Bramlage after winning his first game back in Bramlage in 2012. Yeah, that’s right. Lon Kruger is 0-5 versus Bruce Weber in Manhattan, and only 3-7 overall in their 10 meetings.
But these Sooners are the same as previous years. They feature one of the most dynamic players in the country, and some really solid supporting pieces. Oh wait, isn’t that what we said in 2016 when the Sooners were led by Buddy Hield? And the Sooners walked in to Bramlage and still lost by 11. Well then, lets hope history repeats itself.
The Kansas State Wildcats are coming off yet another close loss to the Kansas Jayhawks and are looking to rebound against the Sooners. Well, rebound may not be the right word, as this team doesn’t generally do that super well. Bounce-back, yes, we’ll go with bounce-back. Either way, Bruce Weber’s squad is looking to get back to .500 in conference play against a Sooner squad that has only lost to West Virginia, on the road, so far in Big 12 play; though they did need overtime to finish off TCU in Norman last Saturday.
Big props go to freshman point guard Cartier Diarra, who has looked pretty solid in his first two starts replacing the injured Kamau Stokes. Diarra dropped 17 points in the Wildcats 86-82 win over Oklahoma State last week, and then dropped in 18 against Kansas in Allen Fieldhouse. He’s still rough, including a pretty poor 0.67 A/T ratio over his first two starts, but his ability to draw defenders thanks to his overall offensive threat has been creating opportunities for his teammates.
Barry Brown came back down to Earth after his 38-point outburst against OSU and merely scored 12 against KU. Xavier Sneed has put two solid outings together, dropping 25 points and grabbing 19 rebounds in the last two games. And Dean Wade, criticized for only taking 5 shots against the Cowboys, led the team against KU with his third-straight 20+point game against the Jayhawks.
Again, history favors the Wildcats, but it will need all four of it’s big-name palyers to step up and contribute. And someone is going to have to live in Trae Young’s pocket all night long.
Tonight’s game, scheduled for a 8:00 p.m. CST tip-off, will be on ESPNU/ESPN3 with Matt Schick (play-by-play) and Jason Capel (analyst) on the call. Be sure and check out Jon Morse’s full How To Watch post for more details.
The game can be heard over-the-air on the K-State Sports Network with Wyatt Thompson (play-by-play) and Stan Weber (analyst) on the call (you can also listen online for free at TuneIn.com or at KStateSports.com). Satellite radio is available on Sirius/XM 84, and “Internet” 84.
PROJECTED STARTING LINEUP
Kansas State (12-5, 2-3 Big 12)
G: #2 Cartier Diarra
G: #5 Barry Brown Jr.
G: #20 Xavier Sneed
F: #32 Dean Wade
F: #14 Makol Mawien
4/6 Oklahoma (14-2, 4-1 Big 12)
G: #0 Christian James
G: #1 Rashard Odomes
G: #11 Trae Young
F: #3 Khadeem Lattin
F: #35 Brady Manek