While it’s plain that winning on the road in the Big 12 is very tough, Kansas State’s 0-5 slide in road games misses something — that the Cats went on the road in Texas in early January and came back to Manhattan with two straight wins.
It feels like forever ago that the Wildcats beat Texas 116-103 in Austin, then followed that up with a 97-95 overtime victory in Waco. Of course, way back then no one was still quite sure what these Cats were capable of, and they were certainly still being overlooked by two of the Big 12 teams picked to finish in the top 3 of the preseason poll.
But that changed in a hurry, and while the Wildcats are definitely going to finish far above their last-place prediction it’s been kind of up and down since that miraculous first week of January.
And one of those teams K-State beat would love to join the other in repaying the favor of winning on their home floor. So far this season, Texas is the only team to come to Manhattan and come away with a win, and the Longhorns still barely scraped that one out. Baylor would love to do the same thing, and will be fueled by the loss they suffered at the hands of the Jayhawks just three days ago in Lawrence.
Despite Baylor coming in with the higher ranking, this is a toss-up game. It’s the Big 12, and K-State is the home team. If they can play good defense and limit turnovers, the Wildcats should win. But the Bears are a good team as well, and until Allen Fieldhouse Things happened, they were winning on Saturday. Add in that despite the previous game and a dozen more games of film, Jerome Tang still knows more about Baylor than Scott Drew knows about his protégé’s Wildcats.
Buckle up, this could be ugly.
Tonight’s matchup is scheduled for a 6:01pm CT tip from Bramlage and will be aired on ESPN2 with Rich Hollenberg (play-by-play) and Fran Fraschilla (analyst) 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 84 with Wyatt Thompson (play-by-play) and Stan Weber (analyst) calling the action over there.
Hey, are you on Discord? We are now, too! Feel free to join us! (Make sure you click the reaction button on the rules notice though, or you won’t see anything.) We’ll have a game thread there as well!