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PULLEN TIES WIN MARK, CHASES POINT RECORD

By Mark Janssen

TUSCON, Ariz. - Jacob Pullen admits to thinking about it: "Being a senior, it's the last trip around. You think about it's your last time touching the ball in a college jersey. You never want to have that feeling, but at the same time, you have to prepare for it and try not to let that happen too soon."

What Pullen has accomplished at K-State in the last four years will be in the record books for many media guides to come. With the Wildcats win over Utah State on Thursday, he joined Luis Colon and Chris Merriwether as the all-time winningest K-State players with 95 victories.

And, should he net 21 points tonight against Wisconsin in the 7:40 p.m. Central start here at the McKale Center, he would tie Mike Evans as the all-time leading scorer in Kansas State history with 2,115 points.

On approaching that milestone, Pullen said, "If it happens, it would mean something when the season is over, but right now, it doesn't. If I get it and we don't win, I'll feel like it was pointless. I'm a competitor and I really want to win games."

Also focused on winning the Wisconsin game as opposed to individual records was Frank Martin. But the Wildcat coach did admit, "It would be an honor to have been the person that was able to coach him when he accomplishes that."

From the 2007-08 season when Pullen arrived on campus in the shadows of Michael Beasley, coach Frank Martin said, "He learned from Mike when he was around Mike; he learned from Bill (Walker); then he started learning from Denis Clemente as far as believing that you can win through work.

"One thing about Jacob, he never ran away from anything. He has only raised the expectations of our team," said Martin. "In the middle of any crisis, he didn't lower expectations, he raised expectations. For a 21-year-old kid to do that, that's to be commended."

Pullen went to a 9.7-point per game scorer as a rookie, then to 13.9, then to 19.3 and now finishing his career at 19.6 points per game.

In the last eight games, Pullen has never been better offensively scoring 22, 18, 17, 20, 24, 27, 27 and 38 points elevating the Wildcats to a third-place tie in the Big 12 Conference, and now into the Round of 32 at the NCAA Tournament.

Pullen, along with former Texas Longhorn Kevin Durant, are the only players in Big 12 history to average 20 points per game, plus make the league's All-Defensive team.

Currently the second all-time scorer at K-State, plus the leader in career steals, 3-pointers and games played, are part of the reason why Martin says, "He's going to go down as one of the greatest K-Staters of all time. We've been to four postseason tournaments (two NCAA, two NIT). Not too many kids at K-State can claim that they were a part of something like that."

The Wildcat coach added, "When you go deep into the tournament you get credit for being a really good player. Jacob has been through it before. He had some pretty good games in the tournament last year and created a name for himself. Now he gets another opportunity. He's carried us before, and our team believes in him now."

AVERAGING 20-PLUS: Twenty-point scorers for a single season in K-State history include - Michael Beasley, Bob Boozer, Dick Knostman, Mitch Richmond, Willie Murrell, Askia Jones, Chuckie Williams and Norris Coleman. Jacob Pullen is now at 19.6.

DID YOU KNOW? In the 15-year history of the Big 12, Jacob Pullen's 34 points scored last year against BYU ranks second for a single game only behind Ricky Paulding's 36 vs. Marquette in 2003.

Pullen's six steals against Butler also ranks third high only behind KU's Sherron Collins' eight vs. North Dakota State in 2009, and, Texas' T.J. Ford's seven vs. Oregon in 2002.


We hope you enjoy K-State Sports Extra. We would like to hear your comments and any story ideas for future emails, so fire them our way. Contact either Mark Janssen at mjanssen7@cox.net, or Kansas State Director of Athletic Communications/SID Kenny Lannou at klannou@kstatesports.com. For those who would like to share Sports Extra with a friend or family member, or change your current email address, click here.