What a ride it has been — and it’s not over yet.
In the late game from the east coast, your Kansas State Wildcats take on the Kentucky Wildcats in the East Region semifinal to determine which Cinderella story continues.
Wait, what? Kentucky isn’t a Cinderella. They may only be a 5-seed, but the are a blue blood, one of the bluest of blue bloods on par with North Carolina, Kansas, and Duke. They have the most overall wins of any men’s Division 1 program, they were just in the Elite Eight last year, and have been to this round of sixteen in seven of John Calipari’s nine seasons leading the blue Wildcats.
Yet, after knocking off the ultimate Cinderella last week, the Wildcats from Kansas are not quite the darling of this match-up. UMBC’s upset of Virginia will go down in the record books, and will remain in tournament lore forever. But K-State was the unlucky opponent to have to face them next, and wanted a Sweet 16 berth just as badly. And so K-State earned a bunch of enemies in the process, even if we aren’t all that bad (even if the offense is sometimes pretty ugly to watch).
While tonight is about 2018, and advancing to the Elite Eight, there’s also a chance at revenge for the 2014 K-State team that got matched-up with the horridly under-seeded Kentucky in the first round and got sent home early. Hopefully Shane Southwell is motivating these guys well.
We still don’t know if Dean Wade will be healthy enough to play, and he’s not listed as a probable starter. We don’t know if Bruce Weber and his staff can fix the issues that plagued the offense in the Round of 32 game (and off and on this season). We don’t know if a bevy of future NBA picks will be trying to overlook a wildcard run from K-State. This is K-State, and anything can happen. You are in Weberville after all.
Tonight’s Sweet 16 game is scheduled for an 8:47 p.m. CDT tip-off (approximate) from the Philips Arena in Atlanta, GA. The game can be seen on television on CBS, or online (or mobile) via NCAA March Madness Live, with Brian Anderson (play-by-play), Chris Webber (analyst), and Lisa Byington (sideline reporter) 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). You can also listen to the national broadcast from Westwood One with Brandon Gaudin (play-by-play) and John Thompson (analyst) for free on the March Madness Live App or at www.ncaa.com/marchmadnesslive. Satellite radio, with the national broadcast, is available on Sirius 137, XM 201, and “Internet” 962.
PROJECTED STARTING LINEUP
Kansas State (24-11, 10-8 Big 12)
G: #2 Cartier Diarra
G: #3 Kamau Stokes
G: #5 Barry Brown Jr.
G: #20 Xavier Sneed
F: #14 Makol Mawien
G: #3 Hamidou Diallo
G: #22 Shai Gilgeous-Alexander
F: #25 PJ Washington
F: #5 Kevin Knox
F: #4 Nick Richards