KANSAS STATE (10-4, 0-2 Big 12) vs. WEST VIRGINIA (8-6, 0-2 Big 12)
Wednesday at 6:01 p.m. CT in Bramlage Coliseum (12,528), Manhattan, Kan.
- Clay Matvick (play-by-play)
- Tim Welsh (analyst)
- Bill Palladino (producer)
Satellite Radio: Sirius 119 / XM 199 / Internet 953
(800) 221.CATS 
Single Game: $20 (bench/GA)/$40 (chairback)
Group (12+): $12
Bramlage Bundle: $30
- ($10 concession voucher & gift)
Wildcat 4-Pack: $60
Kansas State: Bruce Weber (Wis.-Milwaukee ’78)
Overall: 448-239/21st season
At K-State: 135-84/7th season
vs West Virginia: 4-9 (3-3 at home)
West Virginia: Bob Huggins (West Virginia ’77)
Overall: 853-347/37th season
At West Virginia: 263-136/12th season
- Kansas State: 10-4 (3-3 on the road)
PROJECTED STARTING LINEUP
Kansas State (10-4, 0-2 Big 12)
G: #00 Mike McGuirl
G: #2 Cartier Diarra
G: #5 Barry Brown, Jr.
G/F: #20 Xavier Sneed
F: #14 Makol Mawien
West Virginia (8-6, 0-2 Big 12)
G: #10 Jermaine Haley
G: #20 Taevon Horton
F: #21 Wesley Harris
F: #23 Esa Ahmad
F: #31 Logan Routt
Overall: West Virginia leads 10-5
Current Streak: West Virginia, 4
In Manhattan: Tied 3-3
At Bramlage Coliseum: Tied 3-3
Last Meeting: L, 51-89, 2/3/18
Weber vs. Huggins: 6-9 (3-3 at home)
- Kansas State (10-4, 0-2 Big 12) returns home on Wednesday, as the Wildcats play host to former head coach Bob Huggins and his West Virginia Mountaineers (8-6, 0-2 Big 12) at Bramlage Coliseum. The game will tip at 6 p.m., CT on ESPNU with Clay Matvick (play-by-play) and Tim Welsh (analyst) on the call.
- K-State returns to friendly confines of Bramlage Coliseum after falling to 0-3 on the road in its setback at No. 11/11 Texas Tech on Saturday. The Wildcats are 7-1 in home games, but they did see their 9-game winning streak at Bramlage Coliseum fall in last Wednesday’s 67-47 loss to Texas in the Big 12 opener. The team, which has lost 3 of their last 4 meetings with West Virginia at home, is looking to avoid dropping their first 2 Big 12 home games for the first time since the 2008-09 season.
- Much like K-State, West Virginia enters Wednesday’s game looking for an offensive spark after averaging 56.5 points in its first 2 Big 12 contests. The two schools rank ninth and 10th in scoring offense after the first week of the league schedule. The Mountaineers have lost 4 of their last 7 games, including consecutive games to start Big 12 play for the first time since joining the league in 2013. Just like K-State has missed production from senior Dean Wade, WVU has been without junior Sagaba Konate, its leading scorer (13.6 ppg.) and rebounder (8.0 rpg.), for the last 5 games. Four others are averaging in double figures led by senior Esa Ahmad (13.4 ppg.).
- This will be the 16th meeting between K-State and West Virginia on the hardwood with the Mountaineers holding a 10-5 advantage, including a 9-4 edge since the start of Big 12 play. The Mountaineers have won 9 of the last 10 meetings in the series, including 4 consecutive wins since 2017, and have victories in 3 of the last 4 visits to Bramlage Coliseum. The Wildcats’ lone win since 2014 came at home on Jan. 21, 2017 when five players scored in double figures in a 79-75 victory.
- Down 14-0 to start the game and facing as much as a 16-point deficit, K-State’s second-half rally fell short in a 63-57 loss at No. 11/11 Texas Tech on Saturday, as the Wildcats dropped to 0-2 in Big 12 play for the first time since the 2015-16 season. The team closed to within 43-42 on a 3-pointer by senior Barry Brown, Jr., with 6:56 remaining, but the Red Raiders got a 3-point answer from leading scorer Davide Moretti on the next possession that ignited a 7-0 run and gave them a cushion the rest of the way. Brown led three Wildcats in double figures with 16 points, including 11 after halftime, while sophomore Cartier Diarra and junior Makol Mawien added 11 and 10 points, respectively. Mawien, who has scored in double figures in 3 of the last 4 games, had a career-best 11 boards to collect his first double-double.
- With K-State off to its lowest point total (104) to start Big 12 play since 2001, the Wildcats have had to rely on their strong defense of late, which ranks among the Top 50 in several categories, including sixth in scoring defense (58.9 ppg.), 39th in 3-point field goal percentage defense (29.7) and 43rd in field goal percentage defense (39.7). The team has allowed just one opponent to break 70 points this season (83 by Marquette), while holding 9 of 14 opponents to 60 points or less. Eight opponents have been held below 40 percent shooting, while 10 have shot below 30 percent from 3.
NOTES ON WEST VIRGINIA
- West Virginia (8-6, 0-2 Big 12) enters Wednesday’s contest with losses in 4 of its last 7 outings, including consecutive setbacks to start Big 12 play for the first time since joining the league in 2012-13. The Mountaineers opened the Big 12 season with a 62-59 loss to Texas Tech on Jan. 2 before losing at Texas, 61-54, on Saturday. The squad is 0-2 on the road this season.
- West Virginia returns 7 lettermen, including 3 starters, from a squad that won 26 games and advanced to the Sweet 16 in 2017-18.
- West Virginia is averaging 76.1 points on 42.4 percent shooting, including 33.1 percent from 3-point range, to go with 41.6 rebounds, 13.8 assists, 5.4 steals and 4.7 blocks per game, while allowing 71.6 points on 41.8 percent shooting, including 33.7 percent from 3-point range. The team is connecting on 68.6 percent from the free throw line.
- Five Mountaineers are averaging in double figures led by junior Sagaba Konate, who leads in scoring (13.6 ppg.), rebounding (8.0 rpg.) and blocks (2.8 bpg.), while connecting on 43.5 percent from the field. Konate has played in just 8 games due to injury, including missing the last 5 games. Senior Esa Ahmad is averaging 13.4 points on 46 percent shooting with 5.7 rebounds per game. Junior James Bolden (11.4 ppg.) freshman Derek Culver (11.0) and junior Lamont West (10.8 ppg.) all average double figures. West (25) and Bolden (21) are among 6 players with double-digit 3-pointers.
- West Virginia is led by Hall of Fame head coach Bob Huggins, who has posted an 853-347 (.711) record in 37 years of coaching. His 853 victories rank third among all active Division I head coaches and seventh all-time. He has a 263-136 (.662) mark in his 12th season with the Mountaineers, having led them to 9 NCAA Tournament appearances, including the 2010 Final Four.
- K-State and West Virginia will meet for the 16th time in their histories on Wednesday with the Mountaineers owning a 10-5 advantage, including a 9-4 mark since the start of the Big 12. The two schools met twice before the start of Big 12 play in 2013, including the first meeting in 1949.
- West Virginia has won 9 of the last 10 meetings with K-State, including 4 in a row, including a season sweep in 2018. The last Wildcat win in the series came at home, 79-75, on Jan. 21, 2017.
- The series is tied 3-3 in Manhattan with West Virginia winning 3 of the last 4 meetings at Bramlage Coliseum, including a 77-69 victory in the last meeting on Jan. 1, 2018. Current junior Xavier Sneed led three Wildcats in double figures with 20 points in that last meeting, while current seniors Dean Wade and Barry Brown, Jr., added 17 and 14 points, respectively.
- Head coach Bruce Weber is 4-9 all-time against West Virginia, including a 3-3 mark at home, while Weber is 6-9 against head coach Bob Huggins.
- Senior Dean Wade has had the most success against West Virginia in his career, averaging 11.6 points on 45.8 percent shooting and 6.7 rebounds in 7 career games, while fellow seniors Barry Brown, Jr., have averaged 10.3 and 9.6 points per game, respectively, in their career vs. the Mountaineers.
AT HOME IN THE BIG 12
- K-State is 275-178 (.607) at home in Big 12 play, including a 37-18 (.673) mark under head coach Bruce Weber. Since going 8-10 (.444) at home from 2015-17, the Wildcats rebounded to win 6 of 9 home games last season.
- K-State has not lost its first 2 Big 12 home games since opening the 2008-09 season with losses to Oklahoma (53-61) and Baylor (65-83).
LAST TIME OUT: 11/11 TEXAS TECH 63, K-STATE 57
- A matchup of Top 10 defensive teams proved to be as good as advertised, as Kansas State’s second-half rally fell short in a 63-57 loss to No. 11/11 Texas Tech before a packed house at United Supermarkets Arena on Saturday.
- Down by as many as 16 points, K-State closed to with 43-42 on a 3-pointer by senior Barry Brown, Jr., with 6:56 remaining. However, Texas Tech got a 3-pointer from leading scorer Davide Moretti on the next possession that ignited a 7-0 run that gave the Red Raider a cushion the rest of the way.
- The Wildcats continued their struggles on the offensive end, missing their first 13 field goals and finishing with 57 points on 33.3 percent (19-of-57) shooting from the field, including 17.4 percent (4-of-23) from 3-point range against one of the nation’s stingiest defenses.
- Brown was joined in double figures by sophomore Cartier Diarra (11) and junior Makol Mawien (10), who finished with a career-best 11 rebounds to earn his first double-double. Mawien, who scored all 10 of his points and grabbed 8 of 11 rebounds after halftime, has scored in double digits in 3 of 4 games, while Brown has a team-high 10 double-digit scoring games.
- Moretti’s game-high 19 points led a balanced offensive attack by the Red Raiders, who have now won 26 of their last 27 games at United Supermarkets Arena, including 10 straight victories. In all, five different players scored at least 9 points, including 14 points from graduate transfer Matt Mooney.
- The Wildcats were without senior Dean Wade for the fifth consecutive game, while senior Kamau Stokes did not start but came off the bench after missing the Texas game due to injury. Stokes was restricted to 21 minutes, posting 7 points on 3-of-8 field goals, including 1-of-5 from long range.
- Freshman Shaun Neal-Williams, who absorbed most of the minutes from Stokes, finished with a season-high 7 points to go with 3 rebounds, 2 assists and 1 block in 19 minutes. He is averaging 6.5 points on 50 percent shooting in the last 2 games with 3.5 rebounds in 19.5 minutes per game.
- The Red Raiders have now won 6 of the last 8 meetings with the Wildcats in the series, including 5 straight victories at home.
- K-State is averaging a Big 12-low 65.2 points on 42 percent shooting (334-of-795), including 30.3 percent (82-of-271) from 3-point range, and 62.5 percent (163-of-261) from the free throw line. The Wildcats rank 329th among 351 Division I teams in scoring offense, 287th in field goal percentage, 316th in 3-point field goal percentage and 337th in free throw percentage.
- In the Big 12, K-State ranks ninth in 3-point field goal percentage and 10th in scoring offense, field goal percentage and free throw percentage.
- The Wildcats have scored 70 or more points on just 5 occasions, including a season-high 95 points in the win over Eastern Kentucky (11/16/18), while they have only connected on 45 percent from the field in 4 games and 40 percent or better from the 3-point line on 3 occasions.
- With a fully healthy roster in the first 9 games, K-State was averaging 69.6 points on 43.6 percent shooting, including 30.9 percent from 3-point range. However, since losing senior and leading scorer Dean Wade to injury against Georgia State (12/15/18), the squad is averaging just 57.4 points on 38.8 percent shooting, including 29.2 percent from long range. In this 5-game span, the Wildcats have not eclipsed the 70-point barrier and have shot 45 percent from the field and 40 percent from 3-point range just once.
- K-State struggled from the 3-point line this season, connecting on just 30.3 percent (82-of-271) of its attempts from long range and averaging just 5.9 makes per game. The Wildcats rank 316th in 3-point field goal percentage, 302nd in 3-pointers attempted and 320th in 3-pointers per game.
- Senior Kamau Stokes, who has knocked down 14 treys in his last 5 games played, leads all Wildcats with 23 made 3-pointers this season, while junior Xavier Sneed is second with 21. Senior Barry Brown, Jr., is the only other Wildcat with double-digit 3-pointers with 14.
- This comes on the heels of a record-setting 2017-18 season from 3-point range, in which, the Wildcats set both single-season marks for makes (254) and attempts (745), while five different players posted 30 or more 3-point field goals led by Xavier Sneed’s 65 makes.
- Stokes (163/7th) and Brown (145/10th) rank among the school’s career Top 10 in 3-point field goals made (and attempted), while Wade also has 100 makes (111) in his career from long range.
OFFENSIVE BALANCE KEY TO SUCCESS
- Much like 2017-18, balance has been key to K-State’s offensive success this season, as four players (Barry Brown, Jr., Dean Wade, Xavier Sneed and Kamau Stokes) are averaging in double figures.
- Five different players (Wade, Brown, Sneed, Stokes and Makol Mawien) have led the Wildcats in scoring, while six players have at least one double-digit scoring game, including 10 by Brown, 9 by Stokes, 8 by Sneed and Wade, 6 by Mawien and 3 by sophomore Cartier Diarra.
- Since Weber took over in 2012-13, K-State has posted a 57-19 (.750) record when four or more players score in double figures, including a 5-1 mark in 2018-19. The Wildcats are 12-4 when Mawien scores in double digits, while the team is 10-3 (8-2 in 2017-18) when Diarra reaches double-digits.
- Senior Kamau Stokes scored 16 of his season-high 18 points in the second half, as K-State overcame a 16-point deficit to top Southern Miss, 55-51, at Bramlage Coliseum on Dec. 19.
- The 16-point deficit overcome for victory tied for the third-largest in school history, including the largest since coming from 16 points down to defeat New Mexico on Nov. 23, 2005. It was the largest second-half deficit overcome for victory since trailing 57-41 at La Salle on Jan. 5, 1994.
- K-State went on a 24-2 run over 8:08 in the second half to take over the game, as the Wildcats held the Golden Eagles scoreless for 5:24 during the span. The run came after scoring a season-low 19 points in the first half, the fewest points in any half since scoring 15 vs. TCU on Feb. 15, 2015.
- Stokes went 6-of-8 from the field, including 4-of-5 from 3-point range, and was joined in double digits by fellow senior Barry Brown, Jr., who scored 15 points. Junior Xavier Sneed pulled down a career-high 14 boards to lead all players and give the Wildcats a 38-32 edge on the glass.
- As a team, K-State shot 45.5 percent (20-of-44) from the field, which included a great disparity from the first to second halves. The Wildcats hit on a season-low 30.8 percent (8-of-26) in the first half then made a season-best 66.7 percent (12-of-18) in the second half. Southern Miss was held to 51 points on 31.7 percent shooting, including 21.2 from 3-point range.
HISTORY AT BRAMLAGE COLISEUM
- K-State has posted a 372-116 (.762) record at Bramlage Coliseum since its opening during the 1988-89 season. The 372 wins are the second-most at a home venue, trailing the 378 wins at Ahearn Field House (1950-88).
- K-State has registered a 171-36 (.826) record at home over the past 13 seasons, including a 72-31 (.699) mark in Big 12 play. The 171 wins rank fourth among all Big 12 schools in that span, while the 72 league victories at home are only surpassed by Kansas and Texas. In all, the program has earned double-digit victories in 25 of its 30 seasons in the arena, including a current streak of 17 straight seasons.
- K-State has a 232-59 (.797) record at home, including a 138-10 (.932) mark in non-conference action, since the 2001-02 season for an average of just over 13 home wins (13.3) per season in that span.
- Head coach Bruce Weber has tallied an 87-20 (.811) record at Bramlage Coliseum since taking over at K-State in 2012-13 with non-conference home losses to Northern Colorado (2013), Texas Southern (2014) and Georgia (2014). The 20 losses (17 of which have come in Big 12 play) have come by a grand total of 140 points or just 7.0 points per game.
- K-State has a 105-6 (.946) record at home venues (includes home games played at Bramlage Coliseum, INTRUST Bank Arena in Wichita and the Sprint Center in Kansas City) in non-conference play dating back to the 2006-07 season, including a 96-5 (.950) mark at Bramlage Coliseum.
- The Wildcats have won 92 of their last 96 non-conference home games, including a 29-game winning streak at Bramlage Coliseum. The last home non-conference loss came against Georgia, 50-46, on Dec. 31, 2014.
- K-State has posted a 140-35 (.800) record in non-conference play since the 2006-07 season, which includes a 10-2 (.818) mark in 2018-19. The team has registered double-digit non-conference wins in 12 of the last 13 years, averaging 10.8 non-conference wins in that span, and went a program-best 13-1 in non-conference play during the 2009-10 season.
- Since going 7-6 in non-conference in 2014-15, which included back-to-back losses to Texas Southern and Georgia, the Wildcats has won double-digit non-conference games each of the past three seasons and is 40-8 (.833) in non-conference play since 2015-16. It is during this span that the school has won 29 consecutive non-conference games at Bramlage Coliseum.
‘CATS HAVE BEEN STELLAR ON DEFENSE UNDER WEBER
- K-State has put up some impressive defensive numbers under head coach Bruce Weber, leading the Big 12 in scoring defense twice in the last 6 years (60.4 ppg., in 2012-13 and 65.4 ppg., in 2013-14). Last season, the Wildcats held opponents to 67 points on 42.5 percent shooting.
- K-State is holding opponents to 58.9 points on 39.7 percent shooting, including 29.7 percent from 3-point range, while forcing opponents into 15.3 turnovers per game. The Wildcats rank sixth in scoring defense, 39th in 3-point field goal defense and 43rd in field goal percentage defense. The team ranks second in scoring defense and rebounding defense (31.7) and third in 3-point field goal percentage defense and turnovers forced in the Big 12.
- K-State has held 9 of 14 opponents to 60 points or less this season with one eclipsing 70. The squad has now held 78 opponents to 60 points or less in Weber’s tenure, boasting a 70-8 mark (losses to Kansas in 2012, Northern Colorado and Kentucky in 2013, Texas Southern and Georgia in 2014, Texas and Oklahoma State in 2016, West Virginia in 2017 and Tulsa in 2018).
- Prior to allowing Texas to score 67 points on Jan. 2, K-State had held each of its last 5 opponents to 54.6 points on 37.1 percent (99-of-267) shooting, including 25 percent (32-of-128) from 3-point range. It marked just the third time since the inception of the shot clock in 1985-86 that the Wildcats held 5 straight opponents below 60 points and the first time since a 5-game stretch from Dec. 11, 2008, to Jan. 3, 2009.
- K-State has a 114-31 (.792) record under Weber when holding a foe to 69 points or less and a 21-53 (.288) when allowing 70 or more points.
POINTS OFF TURNOVERS
- Nearly a third of K-State’s total points (235/809) this season have come off turnovers, as the Wildcats are averaging 16.8 points off 15.3 opponent mistakes per game. The team ranks 67th nationally in turnover margin (+2.7), 79th in turnovers forced (15.3) and 104th in steals (7.3).
- The Wildcats scored 20 or more points off opponent turnovers in 5 of 14 games, including a season-high 24 in the win over Eastern Kentucky (11/16/18). They have also put up 20 points or more off opponent turnovers against Kennesaw State (20), Denver (23), Penn (22) and Marquette (22).
- K-State has scored more than 3,000 points (3,335) off turnovers during Weber’s tenure, an average of 15.2 points per game. In 2017-18, the Wildcats averaged 17.3 points off turnovers, outscoring opponents, 639-423.
- A year ago, K-State ranked eighth nationally in total steals (294) and 18th in steals per game (7.9), while the school was one of just 5 nationally (Georgia State, Nicholls State, Purdue and Stephen F. Austin) with three players (Barry Brown, Jr., Dean Wade and Xavier Sneed) with 40 or more steals.
- Led by all-time steals leader Barry Brown, Jr., who recently broke the record with 211st steal against Vanderbilt (12/22/18), the Wildcats have 3 other players with 100 or more steals, including Kamau Stokes (109), Xavier Sneed (109) and Dean Wade (105). Sneed and Stokes will join the career Top 10 with his next steal, while Wade could also crack the list.
GAME OF RUNS
- K-State’s use of runs has been particularly effective this season, as the Wildcats have totaled 32 runs of at least 7 or more points, including 19 runs of 10 or more points. The team posted five such runs in the win over Georgia State (12/15/18), including runs of 8-0, 16-4, 13-2, 12-0 and 9-1, while they produced the biggest run (24-2) in the comeback win over Southern Miss (12/19/18), which was the largest comeback (down 16 points) since 2005.
- The Paradise Jam was a tournament of runs for K-State, as the Wildcats put together decisive runs, particularly at the end of the first half, en route to double-digit wins against Eastern Kentucky (11/16/18), Penn (11/18/18) and Missouri (11/19/18) in the title game.
- K-State had runs of 12-2 and 20-6 against EKU to take control, while the Wildcats erupted for a 17-2 run right before halftime against Penn then had another 14-4 run to break it back open after the Quakers had closed to within 6 points. Against Missouri, the squad scored 20 of the next 22 points after a 27-all tie then used a 10-4 spurt to push the lead back out to 19 points.
- In addition, K-State used a 21-7 to jump out ahead of Vanderbilt (12/22/18) en route to building a 22-point lead in the second half, while the Wildcats broke open a tight game against George Mason (12/29/18) with a 20-2 run to head into halftime up 36-16. Neither team led in the contests. The Texas game was the first all season that K-State did not have at least one run of 7 or more points.
WADE OUT FOR UNDETERMINED PERIOD OF TIME DUE TO INJURY
- Senior Dean Wade went down with a foot injury in the second half of the win over Georgia State (12/15/18) and will be out for an undetermined period of time. The timetable depends on the rehab process. So far, Wade has missed 5 games (Southern Miss, Vanderbilt, George Mason, Texas and Texas Tech).
- Although a different injury, Wade has been through the injury process before, as he was injured in the second half of the quarterfinal game with TCU (3/8/18) in the Phillips 66 Big 12 Championship, which caused him to miss the semifinal game with No. 9 Kansas (3/9/18) and most of the NCAA Tournament run to the Elite Eight.
NEW STEALS LEADER BROWN CLOSING IN ON SEVERAL OTHER CAREER MARKS
- Senior Barry Brown, Jr., registered a significant milestone in the win over Vanderbilt (12/22/18), becoming the school’s all-time steals leader with 3 against the Commodores to eclipse Jacob Pullen (210, 2007-11). Brown now has 214 career steals in 119 games played.
- Brown places among several career offensive records, including seventh in field goals attempted (1,276) and 3-point field goals attempted (451), eighth in field goals (522), ninth in scoring (1,474) and double-digit scoring games (73) and 10th in 3-point field goals made (145) and assists (288). He is closing in on the Top 10 in free throws made (285) and attempted (407).
- Brown also ranks among the leaders in games played, as his streak of 119 consecutive games and 97 straight starts both rank fourth in school history. He is also third in career minutes played (3,748), needing 727 to pass Steve Henson (4,474; 1987-90). He has a chance to eclipse the school record of 135 set by Jacob Pullen (2007-11) and Rodney McGruder (2009-13).
STOKES ECLIPSES 1,000 CAREER POINTS
- With his 20-point effort against George Mason (12/29/18), senior Kamau Stokes become the 30th player in school history to post 1,000 in a career and join fellow seniors Barry Brown, Jr., and Dean Wade in achieving the milestone. The trio became the first senior class in school history to each top 1,000 career points in a career.
- Brown (1,474 points) and Wade (1,309 points) each eclipsed the mark as juniors and currently rank 9th and 12th, respectively, on the all-time scoring list, while Stokes ranks 28th with 1,019 points.
- Stokes already ranks in the career Top 10 for both 3-point field goals made (163/7th) and attempted (472/6th), while he ranks fifth with 346 assists and is one of just eight players in school history with 300 or more assists.
DON’T FORGET SNEED
- With all the attention paid to the three seniors, the accomplishments of junior Xavier Sneed have somehow been overlooked. The St. Louis native enjoyed a career-best year in 2017-18, averaging 11.1 points, 5.1 rebounds, and 1.8 assists in 31.4 minutes per game while starting all 37 games. He was named to the NCAA South Regional All-Tournament team after averaging 19 points and 7.5 rebounds in games against Kentucky and Loyola Chicago.
- Since missing the opener with Kennesaw State (11/9), Sneed has scored in double figures in 8 of the last 13 games, including a season-high 16 points on 6-of-11 shooting against Eastern Kentucky (11/16/18).
- Sneed collected his second career double-double and first of the season at Tulsa (12/8/18), posting a team-best 13 points to go with 10 rebounds. He has tallied at least 9 rebounds in 4 of the last 7 games.
- K-State got some unexpected “good news” on New Year’s Eve when recent signee Goodnews Kpegeol (KAH-pay-GUL) joined the team and filled the 13th and final scholarship for the remainder of the 2018-19 season.
- An NCAA qualifier prior to enrolling at TaylorMade Academy in Pensacola, Florida for the 2018-19, Kpegeol is immediately eligible after enrolling for the spring semester and has been cleared to play by the NCAA. He is expected to redshirt the remainder of the season.
- A 6-foot-6, 180-pound guard from St. Paul, Minnesota, Kpegeol spent the first half of the 2018-19 season as a postgraduate at TaylorMade after finishing his four-year prep career at North High School. He led the Polars to the Class 4A State Tournament for the first time in 17 years as a sophomore in 2015-16 before the school to a 22-5 record with a 15-1 mark in conference play as a senior in 2017-18. He averaged a team-best 18.2 points in 19 games played as a senior, which included nine 20-point games.
K-STATE WINS PARADISE JAM; FIRST TITLE SINCE 2011
- Included in K-State’s 6-0 start to season was a 3-game sweep to win the 19th annual U.S. Virgin Islands Paradise Jam in St. Thomas, U.S.V.I., Nov. 16-19, as the Wildcats knocked off Eastern Kentucky (95-68), Penn (64-48) and Missouri (82-67).
- The tournament championship marked the 14th in school history and the first since winning the 2011 Diamond Head Classic in Honolulu, Hawai’i. It was also the sixth career tournament title for head coach Bruce Weber and his first with the Wildcats.
- Senior Dean Wade was named the tournament’s most valuable player after averaging 17.3 points on 61.8 percent (21-of-34) shooting with 6.0 rebounds and 3.7 assists in three games, including a team-high 21 points in the title game against the Tigers, while fellow senior Barry Brown, Jr., was one of five players selected as Paradise Jam Tournament All-Stars.
MORE ABOUT K-STATE
- The Wildcats return 10 lettermen, including six players (Barry Brown, Jr., Cartier Diarra, Makol Mawien, Xavier Sneed, Kamau Stokes and Dean Wade) that combined to start all 37 games a season ago, for a team that posted a 25-12 overall record (10-8 in Big 12 play) and advanced to the Elite Eight for the 12th time in school history and the first time since 2010.
- It marked just the sixth 25-win campaign in school history, including the second under head coach Bruce Weber, while the school advanced to the NCAA Tournament for the fourth time in six seasons and 30th time overall.
- K-State returns 185 combined starts from 2017-18, which is the most of any Division I team in the country, and ahead of other schools which return all of its starts, including George Mason (165), Iowa (165), Lipscomb (165) and North Florida (165).
- K-State returns 93.2 percent (2,452 of 2,630 points) of its offense from 2017-18, which ranks 11th among Division I teams (trailing George Mason, Harvard, Wofford, Washington, Brown, Iowa, Wisconsin, UC Irvine, Syracuse and St. Francis). The Wildcats also returns more than 90 percent of their field goals made (869/92.7%), 3-point field goals made (232/91.3%), free throws made (482/96%), assists (476/93.3%) and steals (266/90.5%) as well as 80 or better percent of their minutes (6,558/85%), rebounds (905/80%) and blocks (98/89%).
- K-State returns seven of its top-8 scorers from last season, including three with double-digit averages [Wade (16.2 ppg.), Brown (15.9 ppg.) and Sneed (11.1 ppg.). Other returners include Kamau Stokes (9.0 ppg.), Cartier Diarra (7.1 ppg.), Makol Mawien (6.8 ppg.) and Mike McGuirl (3.3 ppg.). The Wildcats return their individual leader in scoring (Wade), rebounding (Wade), assists (Brown), steals (Brown) and blocks (Mawien).
‘CATS EARN PRESEASON RANKINGS
- K-State opened the 2018-19 season in the Top 15 in both major polls, as the Wildcats earned a No. 11 ranking in the preseason USA Today Coaches poll to go with a No. 12 ranking in the preseason Associated Press poll.
- It marks the first time that K-State has started with preseason rankings in both polls since the 2010-11 campaign when the school opened at No. 3 in the AP and USA Today Coaches polls.
- K-State appeared in the Preseason AP poll for the 17th time in school history, while it was the highest preseason ranking since starting the 2010-11 campaign at No. 3. It was also the 12th time debuting in the AP Top 15 (1951-52, 1952-53, 1953-54, 1956-57, 1957-58, 1958-59, 1961-62, 1964-65, 1965-66, 1975-76 and 2010-11).
- The Wildcats have received several preseason rankings, including No. 11 by NBCSports.com, Yahoo! Sports, Street & Smith’s, Lindy’s and Athlon, No. 12 by ESPN.com, CBSSports.com, USA Today, Stadium, No. 13 by The Athletic, Blue Ribbon Yearbook and No. 14 by SI.com.
- K-State was one of four Big 12 teams to place in both Top 25 polls, as Kansas was the unanimous No. 1 team. West Virginia was No. 13 in both polls, while TCU was ranked No. 20 (Coaches) and No. 21 (AP), respectively.
‘CATS PICKED SECOND IN BIG 12 PLAY; WADE NAMED PRESEASON POY
- K-State was picked to finish second by the league coaches in the annual Big 12 Preseason poll released on Oct. 19, as the Wildcats received 72 points and two first-place votes. Kansas was selected first, while West Virginia, TCU and Texas rounded out the Top 5.
- The second-place selection was the second-highest by a K-State team in the history of the poll, following the 2010-11 team which was picked to finish first with 119 points. In fact, the Wildcats have been picked to finish fifth or better on just six other occasions in the poll, including fourth in 2007-08, 2009-10 and 2014-15 and fifth in 2006-07, 2012-13 and 2013-14.
- Senior Dean Wade became just the second Wildcat to ever be selected the Preseason Big 12 Player of the Year by the league coaches, while Wade and Barry Brown, Jr., were both named to the Preseason All-Big 12 Team. The duo was joined on the team by Kansas’ Dedric Lawson, Iowa State’s Lindell Wigginton, and West Virginia’s Sagaba Konate.
- Wade’s selection marked the second time that a K-State player has been named the preseason Player of the Year and the first since Jacob Pullen in 2010-11. It also was just the second time that two Wildcats appeared on the Preseason All-Big 12 Team, following Pullen and Curtis Kelly in 2010-11. Wade and Brown are just the sixth and seventh players in school history to earn recognition to the Preseason All-Big 12 (since 1996-97), following Manny Dies in 1998-99, Kelly and Pullen in 2010-11, Rodney McGruder in 2012-13 and Marcus Foster in 2014-15.
NEXT UP: AT 20/21 IOWA STATE (12-2, 2-0 BIG 12)
- K-State begins a stretch of back-to-back road games on Saturday with a trip to Ames, Iowa to face a surging Iowa State team (12-2, 0-2 Big 12), which jumped into both Top 25 polls after knocking off No. 5/6 Kansas. The Wildcats snapped a 6-game losing streak to the Cyclones in Ames last season with a 91-75 victory on Dec. 29, 2017.