Welcome back to basketball, Wildcat fans!
It’s been a hot minute since the last time your Kansas State Wildcats took the court, as, for the second year in a row, the WeberCats were unable to earn a place in a post-season tournament.
But there is reason for hope this year. Bruce Weber got three big additions from the transfer market, adding former Mizzou guard Mark Smith, former Wake Forest forward Ismael Massoud, and former Arkansas-Little Rock guard Markquis Nowell. The three transfers join a solid group of returners for the Wildcats, headlined by sophomores Davion Bradford, Selton Miguel, and Nijel Pack, as well as super-senior Mike McGuirl. These Wildcats will be much more experienced, overall, than the last couple years, and should have more scoring prowess than we’ve seen since the killer trio of Barry, Dean, and Kam were in Manhattan.
Tonight, the Wildcats open the season against SWAC foe Florida A&M. It’s a team the Wildcats have seen as recently as December 2nd, 2019, when the Wildcats picked up a 76-58 win over the Rattlers in Bramlage. FAMU was picked to finish 6th in the SWAC (out of 12), but return their starting five from the 2020-21 season, and the veteran-laden squad looks to be better than their preseason rank.
It should be a tough opener for the Wildcats, but one they should still win by double-digits if the preseason hype is to be believed. We shall see.
Tonight’s game from Bramlage Coliseum tips at 7:01pm CT and can be seen on Big 12 Now on ESPN+ with Ben Boyle (play-by-play), Stan Weber (analyst), and Kelsey Bigelow (sideline reporter) on the call.
If you haven’t subscribed to ESPN+, or just don’t want to, 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 on the The Varsity Network app and at K-StateSports.com.
PROJECTED STARTING LINEUP
G: #00 Mike McGuirl
G: #13 Mark Smith
G: #21 Nijel Pack
F: #25 Ismael [Ish] Massoud
F: #20 Kaosi Ezeagu