It’s time for another K-State Q&A.
Lots of fun topics on tap this week. Let’s get right to them. Thanks, as always, for your questions.
I’m giving K-State a 36 percent chance of winning this game. That’s double the 18 percent chance Ken Pomeroy is giving the Wildcats, if you’re into that sort of thing.
Never miss a local story.
K-State wins at Allen Fieldhouse are rare. The Wildcats haven’t won there since 2006, and it took Jim Wooldridge breaking his finger at halftime to pull that one out. Before that, K-State hadn’t won in Lawrence since 1994. The good news, it happens every 12 years. So this is Bruce Weber’s year if the pattern persists.
Also, this isn’t your standard KU team. It has already lost twice at home this season, and the Jayhawks have serious depth issues and front-court concerns. They haven’t looked dominant. Dean Wade had an open look to beat KU on the road last year. The Wildcats could finish the job this time around. They have been decent/good on the road of late. They haven’t beaten anyone nearly as good as KU on the road this season, but crazier things have happened.
But it will be a challenge without Kamau Stokes. Cartier Diarra was great against Oklahoma State, but backing up that performance with another strong effort at KU ain’t going to be easy. He’s never played in front of that type of crowd. K-State doesn’t have much depth either, and it’s going to be hard for the Cats to wear down KU the way Texas Tech did.
They will need to limit KU three-pointers and probably slow the game down a little bit if they want to pull off the upset.
Barry Brown will need another big game. Maybe not 38, but probably 25. Dean Wade will need to be in that neighborhood, too. Same with Xavier Sneed.
Bench scoring was a problem before Kamau Stokes went down, and it’s a much bigger problem now that the team’s top reserve (Cartier Diarra) has been inserted into the starting lineup. Even Bruce Weber seemed overwhelmed trying to explain how the Wildcats could manufacture more bench points after the Texas Tech loss.
The best scoring option is Amaad Wainright. Though he hasn’t shown much offensive punch this year (he’s averaging 3.3 points) he was a major scorer in junior college and even went for 45 in a game.
He can do it, K-State coaches just need to help him find easier ways to put the ball in the basket.
Brian Patrick also has scoring potential. He’s one of the better three-point shooters on the team. I could see him scoring 12 points in a game. But, like Wainright, he hasn’t done much on offense this season and is averaging 2.2 points.
I don’t see any double-digit games coming from the reserve bigs or Mike McGuirl. Someone is going to have to step up.
Nah. I would not recommend betting your life savings on K-State winning the national title because Barry Brown had 38 points against Oklahoma State, but I don’t see any down side to winning by four.
It beats Michael Beasley (44 points) and Bill Walker (31 points) going wild in a 92-86 loss to Baylor in 2008. That must have been a crazy game!
The Wildcats led by 11 with 1:30 remaining and went conservative, while the Cowboys were in comeback mode. It happens.
Oklahoma State designed its defense around stopping Dean Wade, which gave Brown lots of scoring opportunities. He took advantage. Wade will need to help Brown if defenses target him in future games.
I do. Given the choice between KU and the rest of the Big 12, I am taking the field.
That’s not to say the Jayhawks definitely won’t win the league again, but I think Oklahoma, Texas Tech and West Virginia are all a little better. And Texas Tech has already won in Lawrence, so KU is playing from behind.
Right now, I would break the league race into three tiers.
Tier 1: KU, OU, Tech and West Virginia.
Tier 2: Baylor, K-State, TCU, Texas.
Tier 3: Iowa State, Oklahoma State.
West Virginia is the current favorite, but Oklahoma and Texas Tech aren’t far behind. KU is also in the mix.
It’s going to be a fun conference race. Not only are those Tier 1 teams going to have to land wins against each other, taking care of business against Tier 2 and Tier 3 teams will be vital. How many times has KU won the league because of a contender losing games to an also-ran?
We will see what happens. Right now, it seems like OU, Tech and WVU are better positioned than KU to win the trophy.
Yeah, K-State’s upcoming schedule is on the difficult side. No doubt about that. Will the Wildcats be favored in any of those games?
Here’s guessing they find a way to go 2-4.
At KU and at WVU are probably losses, and OU at home will be hard. But the other three are toss-ups. TCU is good, but the Frogs are having trouble closing out tight games. K-State beat Baylor twice last year, and KU will be beatable in Manhattan.
My crystal ball says K-State finishes 19-12 overall and 8-10 in the Big 12. A few upcoming games appear hazy, so the exact record could fluctuate. But it will be in that ballpark. Who K-State beats along the way and how it plays at the conference tournament will decide its NCAA/NIT fate.
Not sure where that leaves the coaching staff. My crystal bar can’t see that far ahead.
At the time, it seemed very concerning that K-State looked so fatigued against Oklahoma State. But Barry Brown was playing through bronchitis and had trouble talking afterward. I wouldn’t hit the panic button just yet.
That being said, Bruce Weber needs to find a way to use Mike McGuirl more and Brown/Diarra less. Diarra definitely looked tired at times.
Early in the basketball season, it was horrible opponents.
On Wednesday, I’m assuming the announced crowd of 7,470 was low because students were away on break and snow was in the forecast. But there’s also been a lack of excitement surrounding this team.
K-State plays Oklahoma and TCU at home next week, and students will be on campus. Bramlage should have good crowds for those games. If not, it will be fairly obvious why fans aren’t showing up.
You have good taste. I am also a member of Team Twix. Seems like a lot of K-State media folks are. They go fast! Snickers is a good backup. Most of the BSFS ice cream options are solid. The only thing that never gets eaten are the orange push pops.
I am still expecting Collin Klein and Andre Coleman to share OC duties. Dickey could get some sort of enhanced title, though.
Kellis Robinett: @kellisrobinett