Well, this is different. This time last week, we were wondering if the losing would ever end. Now we’ve seen two straight wins (and didn’t even have to play Iowa State twice to do it), and the Wildcats are playing decidedly better basketball as of late.
Of course, now Wildcat fans have dreams of a winning streak. Of winning out and making a magical run to earn the Big 12’s auto-bid to the NCAA tournament. But standing in the way is a good West Virginia team, and Huggy’s boys are ready to turn those dreams into a nightmare.
After all, the Wildcats are still a young team, and needed a late jolt of three-straight 3’s from Mike McGuirl to recapture the lead against Oklahoma. Bruce Weber has his team playing better defense, but the offense is still rough (not that Weber teams ever really play “smooth” or “pretty” offense). And while gone are the days of Press Virginia, the Mountaineers still play tough defense and bring pressure consistently. It’s not going to be easy for this young bunch to improve on the 69-47 final from late January.
Last week was pretty magical, and definitely a breath of fresh air in the rough 2020-21 season. But be prepared to fall back to Earth today, because it’s more likely to get ugly than for the magic to continue.
We’ve got a mid-afternoon game today, with a 3:05pm CT start from WVU Coliseum that can be seen on ESPN2 with Rich Hollenberg (play-by-play) and Fran Fraschilla (analyst) on the call. You might be able to stream the game via WatchESPN if the game isn’t blocked in your area.
If you don’t get ESPN2, or can’t access the stream, you can listen to Wyatt Thompson (play-by-play) and Stan Weber (analyst) call the game on much of the K-State Sports Radio Network, and also available online via the TuneIn App and at K-StateSports.com, and satellite radio on XM 388.
PROJECTED STARTING LINEUP
Kansas State Wildcats (7-18)
G: #21 Nijel Pack
G: #00 Mike McGuirl
G: #2 Selton Miguel
F: #11 Antonio Gordon
F: #21 Davion Bradford
West Virginia Mountaineers (16-6)
G: #4 Miles McBride
G: #22 Sean McNeil
F: #11 Emmitt Matthews, Jr.
F: #2 Jalen Bridges
F: #1 Derek Culver