Kansas State plays West Virginia in Morgantown this afternoon. Kickoff is at 1 PM at Milan Puskar Stadium, but this game is streaming-only on ESPN+. More details, as always, are in the How to Watch post.
The Wildcats are pretty much in control of their own destiny at this point. Winning today and scoring a victory on Senior Night against Kansas guarantees the team a spot in the Big 12 Championship game.
Kansas State is coming off a dominant performance against Baylor that was keyed by Will Howard essentially taking over the first half. Indeed, big first stanzas have been a theme this season, as the Cats have outscored their opponents 191-94 in the first half. That performance could well continue against West Virginia, not exactly a defensive juggernaut. Indeed, the ‘Eers are dead last in the conference in scoring defense and in the bottom half in most other defensive categories.
Kansas State’s defense played lights out against Baylor, holding the Bears to just 3 points. But the team also lost Kobe Savage for the season, so it may be helpful that West Virginia’s offense is struggling this season. While a close win over Oklahoma was a much needed boost, that was only the team’s second win in the Big 12 this season. Head coach Neal Brown is very much on the hot seat. You know things are bad when the athletic director resigns and the university’s president feels compelled to make a statement in support of the football coach.
Brown was hired in the same year as Chris Klieman at Kansas State, but while he may be trying to save his job, Klieman is trying to win the 100th game of his coaching career, and the two programs appear to be on different trajectories. Still, Brown has a 2-1 edge over Kansas State and the Wildcats haven’t won in Morgantown since 2014, so all bets are off. But if you’re the betting kind, Kansas State is the favorite here (-8).
So let’s get this thing done. Go Cats, win the dang day!