Sunflower State rivals meet in Big 12 Tournament
Oklahoma City, OK (Sports Network) – Intrastate foes collide at the Ford Center
today, as the second-ranked and top-seeded Kansas Jayhawks tangle with the
fourth-seeded Kansas State Wildcats in the semifinal round of the Big 12
Tournament. The winner will move on to face either Oklahoma State or Texas in
the finals on Sunday.
The Jayhawks won their third straight Big 12 regular season title with a 14-2
finish, and with that came a first-round bye in this event. Kansas began
defense of its 2006 Big 12 Tournament crown in the quarterfinals where it
thrashed ninth-seeded Oklahoma, 64-47, on Friday. It was the ninth win in a row
by the Jayhawks, who improved to 10-1 all-time in quarterfinal action of this
event. Kansas, which has posted its most victories (28) since going 30-8 in
2002-03, has won the most titles (four) and games (20) in this event.
As for Kansas State, it won a school-record 10 Big 12 games this season en
route to its first-ever opening-round bye in this event. The Wildcats began
their tournament run on Friday by posting a convincing 66-45 victory over
fifth-seeded Texas Tech in the quarterfinals. The victory was the team’s 22nd
of the season, its highest win total since posting 25 in 1987-88.
In terms of the all-time series, Kansas owns a comfortable 172-89 lead over K-
State and it has won 34 of the last 35 meetings dating back to February of
KSU knocked down 10-of-23 three-point attempts and it held Texas Tech to a
dismal 32.1 percent shooting effort from the floor en route to a 21-point
victory on Friday. The Wildcats connected on 48.1 percent of their field goal
tries in the game, in addition to dominating the boards, 39-25. Lance Harris
headed the charge with 20 points, while Cartier Martin logged 17 points and
five boards. On the season, Martin leads the squad in scoring with 16.9 ppg,
and he is also pulling down 4.4 rpg. David Hoskins, who turned in eight points
and 12 rebounds on Friday, adds 14.5 ppg and team-high 6.0 rpg for the
Wildcats, while Harris chips in with 10.8 ppg. Overall, KSU is averaging a
respectable 71.3 ppg on 43.0 percent shooting from the field this season.
Kansas forced 15 turnovers, scoring 20 points off those miscues in a 17-point
win over Oklahoma on Friday. The Jayhawks shot a solid 48.1 percent from the
field in the tilt and also outscored Oklahoma in the paint, 42-20. Brandon Rush
turned in 16 points and six boards to lead Kansas, while Darrell Arthur chipped
in with 10 points. On the season, Rush is the team’s top scorer with 13.8 ppg
and he is also grabbing 5.7 rpg and shooting 41.5 percent from long range.
Mario Chalmers, who was held to nine points on Friday, adds 12.0 ppg and he is
the team’s best defender with a team-high 81 steals to his credit. Julian
Wright contributes 11.8 ppg and a team-high 8.0 rpg to the mix, while Arthur
turns in 10.4 ppg and 4.9 rpg. As a team, the Jayhawks are averaging a solid
78.5 ppg on 49.4 percent shooting from the floor. The team is also holding its
opponents to just 37.3 percent shooting from the field, while outrebounding
them by 7.9 rpg.