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Kansas State vs Central Arkansas - It’s good to be back home

After the trip to Bahamas ended on a sour note, the Wildcats are back in Bramlage for a couple weeks to get back on track.

Nov 6, 2023; Las Vegas, Nevada, USA; Kansas State Wildcats guard Darrin Ames (4) dribbles against the USC Trojans during the second half at T-Mobile Arena. Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

Well, the trip to the Bahamas certainly could have gone better for Jerome Tang and the Kansas State Wildcats.

It wasn’t a total loss, and the Wildcats (3-2) picked up a good win against a tough Providence team that has the talent to get to the NCAA Tournament, and even played toe-to-toe with a really really good top-10 Miami squad...well in the second half anyway. Of course the Cats still lost that game, and ran into the issue of having true freshman guard Dai Dai Ames getting suspended for getting punched (which, coupled with Tomlin’s suspension has caused some fans to worry about discipline in year two under Tang).

But Tang still calls the trip another good learning experience, and it did indeed show that at least two of the freshman - Ames and Macaleab “Buddy” Rich - were capable and ready to play big minutes against good teams. That’s a great sign early in the season, and hopefully both will continue to grow as we head into the season.

We’re back in Bramlage tonight for just the third game at home this season. On paper, this should be the easiest game for the Wildcats this season, including possibly even the exhibition game. Central Arkansas enters the game tonight at just 1-4 on the season, with their lone win coming over D3 Hendrix College. The Bears did, however, play tough with Vanderbilt in Nashville, and SEMO in Cape Girardeau, but they are on the third game of an extended road trip, and they’ve yet to face a squad that has the talent level of the Wildcats.

This is the kind of game that should be essentially over by halftime, and one where every able, and eligible, body sees the floor for at least a few minutes. Time to keep growing, learning, and polishing before things get much more serious in a couple weeks.

Tonight’s matchup is scheduled for a 7pm CT tip at Bramlage Colisuem and will be streamed on Big 12 Now on ESPN+ with Ben Boyle (play-by-play), Stan Weber (analyst), and Hannah Whetstone (sideline reporter) on the call. You’ll also be able to hear the game online at K-StateSports.com (and via the Varsity Network app), plus parts of the K-State Sports Radio Network and on SiriusXM 387 with Wyatt Thompson (play-by-play) and Matt Walters (analyst) calling the action over there.

Go Cats!