These boys are on fire.
Seven straight conference wins, including last Tuesday’s 74-67 beating of the hated Jayhawks, has your Wildcats firmly in first place at 7-2 in the Big 12 conference. That victory showed that these Wildcats are the real deal, handling the pressure of being on top while facing a talented team. In years past, Wildcat teams have folded under that kind of pressure, but these guys seem to be using that pressure as fuel.
If they can keep it up, great things await.
Standing in their way are Scott Drew’s Bears squad. Headed in to the mid-week games, K-State and Baylor were tied for first place in the Big 12. But the Bears dropped a road game to the Texas Longhorns, and are currently sitting in third place at 6-3 in the conference. A win for the Bears would put them back into a first-place tie with K-State (Iowa State fell to TCU earlier today to drop them out of first-place contention for this week).
The last time these two teams met in Waco, the Wildcats walked out of the Ferrell Center with a 90-83 victory. K-State has also won the last four in the series. And Baylor is without star big man Tristan Clark, and senior guard Makai Mason has been battling injury this week and was virtually a non-factor in the Bears’ loss to Texas. He’s listed as a “game time decision” for this afternoon.
The Wildcats have the skill to pull this thing off, they have the momentum, and this group has the series history. But these guys still have to play hard and not take anything for granted to maintain both their win streak as well as their hold on first place. If you want to win the Big 12, you have to keep winning games on the road.
This afternoon’s game is scheduled for a 5:05pm CST tip-off, and will be available on ESPN2 with Rich Hollenberg (play-by-play) and Tim Welsh (analyst) on the call. You should also be able to access the game on WatchESPN.com/ESPN3.
You will also be able to listen to live audio across much of the K-State Sports Network with with Wyatt Thompson (play-by-play) and Stan Weber (analyst) calling the action. The game will also be available streaming for free online via the TuneIn app/TuneIn.com and at www.kstatesports.com/watch. Satellite coverage is also available at XM 381 / Internet 972 (likely the BU broadcast). Live stats are available at k-statesports.com, and Twitter updates (@KStateMBB) will also be a part of the coverage from K-State Athletics.
PROJECTED STARTING LINEUP
Kansas State Wildcats (17-5, 7-2 Big 12)
G: #3 Kamau Stokes
G: #5 Barry Brown Jr.
G/F: #20 Xavier Sneed
F: #32 Dean Wade
F: #14 Makol Mawien
Baylor Bears (15-7, 6-3 Big 12)
G: #10 Makai Mason
G: #3 King McClure
G: #12 Jared Butler
G/F: #11 Mark Vital
G/F: #4 Mario Kegler