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It’s a big senior day in Manhattan

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The Wildcats take on Oklahoma and history today

NCAA Basketball: Texas Christian at Kansas State Scott Sewell-USA TODAY Sports

Basketball

Kansas State takes on Oklahoma tonight at Bramlage Coliseum. Tip off is set for 5 PM, and the game will air on ESPN2 with associated streaming as well. The 18th-ranked Wildcats are currently in a tie with Texas Tech for first-place in the Big 12, and a win over the Sooners will guarantee at least a share of the league title. An outright title is still possible too, and if that happens, it will be Kansas State’s first outright title since 1977. No pressure though, right?

Bruce Weber now has 148 wins at Kansas State. That makes him the third-winningest coach in school history, behind only Jack Hartman (294) Tex Winter (261). Weber is probably entitled to a bit more love and affection than he’s gotten from Purple Nation, though he’s clearly a big hit with his players.

Kellis Robinett posits that maybe John Currie—who brought Weber to Manhattan—is entitled to some credit too?

Oklahoma is riding its own wave of recent success. The Sooners are on a four-game win streak that included an 81-68 win over Kansas and ended the insufferable streak we all heard about for years and years, ad infinitum, ad nauseum.

It’s also Senior Night in Manhattan, as our own AMS reports. The Wildcats will try to beat Oklahoma and win the Big 12 while also honoring the contributions of Barry Brown, Jr., Kamau Stokes, and Dean Wade, two unheralded recruits and a small-town kid who made the Wildcats current run possible.

It is difficult to overstate how much these players have meant to the basketball program over their careers, especially when you consider the inauspicious beginnings. Struggling as freshman, Brown, Stokes, and Wade made a pact to leave the program better than they found it. Mission accomplished.

Track

Select members of the track and field team are in Birmingham this weekend for the NCAA Indoor Track Championships. The group includes Big 12 indoor champions Shardia Lawrence (triple jump) and Tejaswin Shankar (high jump) as well as Big 12 first team athletes Aaron Booth (heptathlon), Brett Neelly (shot put), and Lauren Taubert (pentathlon).

After the first day of competition, Taubert finished the pentathlon with a personal best score of 4129 points. That was good for an 11th place finish, and second team All America honors. This marks the ninth consecutive year that a Wildcat has earned All-America status in the pentathlon, tying the nation’s longest active streak.

Teammate Brett Neelly also earned second team All America honors in the men’s shot put competition. Through two throws, and a best throw of 19.41 m on his first attempt, Neelly was at ninth place, but narrowly missed the final on his last throw. He finished in 10th place, good for Kansas State’s first All America title in shot put since 1985, when Andrew Gillam finished seventh in the event.

On the second and final day of competition, Booth will attempt to move up the standings in the heptathlon. With 3928 points, he’s currently in fifth place. Also in competition today will be Shankar (at 1 PM) and Lawrence (at 3:30 PM) who will try to improve on their Big 12 indoor titles by besting a national field.