PREVIEW: K-State, Boston College Clash in Barclays Center Classic Semifinals Friday
PREVIEW: K-State, Boston College Clash in Barclays Center Classic Semifinals Friday
American Sports Network
• Mike Gleason (play-by-play)
• Mark Adams (analyst)
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K-State Sports Network
• Brian Smoller (play-by-play)
• Ben Boyle (analyst)
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K-State Game Center at kstatesports.com
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$20-60 (upper bowl)
$30-200 (lower bowl)
Kansas State: Bruce Weber (Wis.-Milwaukee ’78)
Overall: 396-209/19th season
At K-State: 83-54/5th season
vs. Boston College: First meeting
Boston College: Jim Christian (Rhode Island ‘88)
Overall: 265-198/15th season
At Boston College: 22-45/3rd season
vs. Kansas State: First meeting
PROJECTED STARTING LINEUP
Kansas State (4-0)
G: #3 Kamau Stokes (11.8 ppg., 2.3 apg.)
G: #5 Barry Brown (15.3 ppg., 3.5 rpg.)
G: #25 Wesley Iwundu (14.0 ppg., 5.0 rpg.)
F: #32 Dean Wade (7.0 ppg., 5.0 rpg.)
F: #4 D.J. Johnson (8.3 ppg., 7.3 rpg.)
Boston College (3-1)
G: #1 Jerome Robinson (19.0 ppg, 4.3 apg.)
G: #2 Connor Tava (7.3 ppg., 7.0 rpg.)
G: #0 Ky Bowman (7.3 ppg., 2.0 rpg.)
F: #11 A.J. Turner (9.3 ppg., 3.0 rpg.)
C: #15 Mo Jeffers (6.3 ppg., 8.3 rpg.)
INSIDE THE SERIES
Overall: Tied 1-1 (1-1 on neutral courts)
vs. ACC: K-State trails 12-21 (6-15 on neutral courts)
In Brooklyn: First Meeting
Current Streak: Boston College, 1
Last Meeting: BC won 69-65 in St. Louis, Mo. (3/19/1982)
Weber vs. Boston College: First meeting
Weber vs. Christian: First meeting
GAME 5 - QUICK HITTERS
• Kansas State (4-0) hits the road for the first time in 2016-17, as the Wildcats play Boston College (3-1) in the first of two semifinal games in the Barclays Center Classic in Brooklyn on Friday at 6 p.m. CT. The winner will play either Maryland (5-0) or Richmond (3-1) in the championship tilt on Saturday at 8:30 p.m. CT with the consolation game set for 6 p.m. CT. All games will be broadcast on the American Sports Network.
• K-State is looking for a 5-0 start for the first time since coach Bruce Weber’s inaugural season in 2012-13 and just the fifth in the last 15 years. The Wildcats have not won more than 4 games in a row since running off a 10-game winning streak from Nov. 24, 2013 to Jan. 7, 2014.
• K-State is 144-86 (.626) all-time in regular season tournament play, which includes 7 titles, most recently at the 2011 Diamond Head Classic.
• K-State will meet Boston College for the third time in their respective histories, including the first in the regular season. The previous 2 games came in the NCAA Tournament with the Wildcats winning 74-65 in the 1975 East Regional semifinals in Providence, R.I., and the Eagles earning a 69-65 in the 1982 Midwest Regional semifinals in St. Louis.
• The Wildcats will be playing in the Barclays Center for the second time after recording a 72-41 win over Tulane on Dec. 28, 2013 in the Brooklyn Hoops Winter Festival. Only two players remain for that game, as senior Wesley Iwundu posted 9 points, 3 rebounds and 3 assists in playing 27 minutes in a start, while senior D.J. Johnson had 4 points and 5 rebounds in 17 minutes off the bench. The team recorded 12 3-pointers.
• K-State will be playing in Brooklyn for the sixth time in its history, which going 1-3 against LIU Brooklyn between 1948 and 1950.
• K-State won both of its opening round games of the Barclays Center Classic, defeating Hampton, 89-67, on Sunday and Robert Morris, 61-40, on Tuesday. The Wildcats won the games in very different ways, doing it with offense against the Pirates with a season-high 58.3 percent (28-of-48) shooting and Bruce Weber era 12 3-pointers, while they held the Colonials to the fewest points by an opponent since 2013.
• The Wildcats have had at least 3 players score in double figures in each of the first 4 games, including 4 double-digit scorers in the first 3 for the first time since the 2011-12 season. Leading scorer Barry Brown (15.3 ppg.) is the only player to register double figures in both exhibitions and all 4 regular season games, connecting on 56.7 percent (34-of-60).
IN-SEASON TOURNAMENT PLAY
• K-State is 144-86 (.626) all-time in regular season and holiday tournament play, which includes a 68-31 record in the Big 6/7/8 Holiday Tournament from 1946-78... The Wildcats are 76-55 (.580) in other regular season tournaments.
• K-State has won 7 regular-season tournament titles, all coming since 1987... The titles include the 1987 Sun Met Classic (2-0) Nov. 27-28 in Fresno, Calif., the 1990 BMA Holiday Classic Dec. 28-29 in Kansas City, the 1993 Hawaii Nike Festival Dec. 17-18 in Honolulu, the 1994 Capital City Classic Dec. 29-30 in Tallahassee, Fla., the 1995 Otis Spunkmeyer Classic Dec. 28-29 in Oakland, Calif., the 2006 Las Vegas Holiday Classic Dec. 22-23 and the 2011 Diamond Head Classic Dec. 22-25 in Honolulu.
• Last season, the Wildcats went 3-1 in the CBE Hall of Fame Classic, defeating Maryland-Eastern Shore (80-53) and Columbia (81-71) at home before a 66-42 win over Missouri in the semifinals and an 80-70 loss to No. 9 North Carolina.
THE OPPONENT: BOSTON COLLEGE (3-1)
• Boston College enters Friday’s game with a 3-1 record after posting an 82-75 win over Stony Brook on Nov. 20 and an 80-70 win over Towson in the opening round game of the Barclays Center Classic... The Eagles have won 3 in a row.
• Boston College is averaging 77.0 points on 48.6 percent shooting, including 40 percent from 3-point range, with 41.2 rebounds, 17.5 assists, 4.3 steals and 3.8 blocks per game... The team is allowing 70.2 points per game on 41.3 percent shooting.
• The Eagles are led by sophomore guard Jerome Robinson, who is averaging a team-best 19 points on 42.6 percent shooting to go with 6.5 rebounds, 4.3 assists and 1.8 steals in 33.8 minutes per game... Robinson paces the team in scoring, field goals (26), free throws (20), assists (17), steals (7) and minutes (135)... Seven other players average better than 6.3 points per game, including two graduate transfers - Connar Tava (Western Michigan) and leading rebounder Mo Jeffers (Delaware).
• Boston College returns 5 lettermen, including 3 starters, from a team that posted a 7-25 record and finished last in the ACC.
• Head coach Jim Christian has a 265-198 record in his 15th season overall, including a 23-45 mark in his third year at Boston College... He has led eight teams to the postseason, including 2 NCAA Tournament teams at Kent State.
BREAKING DOWN THE SERIES
• Thursday’s contest will mark the third meeting between K-State and Boston College, including the first in the regular season.
• The previous 2 meetings came in the NCAA Tournament... The Wildcats won 74-65 in the East Regional semifinals in Providence, R.I., on March 20, 1975 before losing in overtime to Syracuse in the East Regional Final, while the eighth-seeded Eagles knocked off the fifth-seeded Wildcats, 69-65, in the Midwest semifinals in St. Louis nearly 7 years later on March 19, 1982.
• K-State is 12-21 all-time against the ACC, including 6-15 at neutral sites... The Wildcats has lost its last 2 meetings with ACC foes, losing to Syracuse, 75-59, in the second round of the 2012 NCAA Tournament in Pittsburgh and to North Carolina, 80-70, in the championship game of the CBE Hall of Fame Classic in Kansas City on Nov. 24, 2015... The last ACC win came in a home-and-home sweep of Virginia Tech in 2010 (73-57 in Manhattan) and 2011 (69-61 in Blacksburg).
POSSIBLE OPPONENT: MARYLAND (5-0)
• Maryland enters the weekend tournament with a 5-0 record, which included a 71-66 win over Towson and a 77-63 win over Stony Brook in the opening round games of the tournament... The Terrapins play Richmond on Friday night.
• Maryland is averaging 75.8 points on 42.2 percent shooting, including 31 percent from 3-point range, with 39.4 rebounds, 11.6 assists, 5.8 steals and 5.6 blocks per game... The team is allowing 61 points per game on 35.5 percent shooting.
• The Terrapins are led All-American candidate Melo Trimble, who is averaging a team-best 19.8 points on 44.8 percent shooting, while three others (Michal Cekovsky, Justin Jackson and Anthony Cowan) are all averaging double figures.
• Head coach Mark Turgeon has a 369-218 record in his 19th season, including a 119-59 mark in his 6th year at Maryland... Turgeon previously spent time as the head coach at Texas A&M (2007-11) and played (1983-87) and coached (1987-92) at Kansas.
POSSIBLE OPPONENT: RICHMOND (3-1)
• Richmond enters the weekend tournament with a 3-1 record, which included an 81-69 win over Robert Morris and a 65-52 win over Hampton in the opening round games of the tournament... The Spiders play Maryland on Friday night.
• Richmond is averaging 69.8 points on 45.5 percent shooting, including 35.4 percent from 3-point range, with 32.5 rebounds, 15.3 assists, 6.3 steals and 2.3 blocks per game... The team is allowing 63.5 points per game on 37.4 percent shooting.
• The Spiders are led by the 1-2 attack of ShawnDre’ Jones (19.5 ppg.) and T.J. Cline (17.0 ppg.), who are both averaging in double figures... Cline, the son of basketball legend Nancy Lieberman, is averaging 6.0 rebounds and 5.5 assists per game.
• Head coach Chris Mooney has a 239-191 record in his 14th season, including a 222-179 mark in his 13th year at Richmond.
GOOD START ON THE OFFENSIVE END
• K-State is averaging 78.2 points on 49.8 percent shooting (110-of-221), including 43.6 percent (34-of-78) from 3-point range, through the first 4 games with average of 38.2 rebounds, 16.3 assists, 8.5 steals and 4.0 blocks per game.
• The Wildcats scored 80 or more points in the first 3 games for the second consecutive season.
• K-State is now 22-2 under head coach Bruce Weber when scoring 80 or more points.
• K-State is averaging 31.5 points in the paint, 22.0 bench points, 19.5 points off of turnovers, 14.8 fast break points and 13.5 second-chance points through 4 games... The team is forcing 14.8 turnovers per game.
• K-State has at least 17 points off turnovers in each of the first 4 games, including a season-high 26 vs. Omaha (11/15)... The squad has scored more than 2,000 points off of turnovers under Bruce Weber, an average of 14.6 points per game.
• K-State has rattled of 4 consecutive games of 12 or more fast-break points for the first time since doing it in 5 straight games during the 2014-15 season... The Wildcats averaged just 7.1 fast-break points per game in 2015-16.
• The Wildcats have connected on better than 46.9 percent of their field goals in 6 of their 8 halves, including a team-best 62.5 percent (15-of-24) in the second half against Western Illinois (11/11)... The team shot a season-best 58.3 percent (28-of-48) in the win over Hampton (11/20)... K-State is now 29-5 under Bruce Weber when shooting 50 percent or better from the field.
• Seven Wildcats are shooting better than 50 percent from the field, including 5 of their top 7 scorers... The starters are shooting a combined 52 percent from the field (78-of-150), including 46.7 percent (21-of-45) from 3-point range.
• Four Wildcats have scored in double figures in 3 of the first 4 games, including double-digit performances in each of the first 4 games from sophomore Barry Brown, who is averaging a team-best 15.3 points on 57.1 percent (24-of-42)... In all, 6 different players have at least one double-digit scoring game, 3 each from senior Wesley Iwundu and sophomore Kamau Stokes.
• It marked the first time since 2011-12 that the Wildcats have opened a season with 4 players scoring in double figures.
IMPROVEMENT FROM LONG RANGE
• One of the focal points for K-State in the offseason was to make improvement from 3-point range, where the Wildcats finished 10th in the Big 12 in both 3-point field goal percentage (30.0) and 3-point field goals made per game (5.30).
• K-State is shooting 43.6 percent (34-of-78) from 3-point range and is averaging 8.5 3-point field goals per game.
• K-State ranks 17th nationally in 3-point field goal percentage and 2nd in the Big 12 in percentage and 3rd in makes.
• The Wildcats knocked down 10-of-14 3-point field goals in the opener with Western Illinois (11/11), including all 7 treys in the second half... Six different players had at least one 3-pointer, including season-best 4-of-5 performance by Xavier Sneed.
• The 71.4 3-point percentage vs. Western Illinois was the highest of Bruce Weber era and the 3rd-most makes.
• K-State posted 12 triples vs. Hampton (11/20), which were the most since also hitting 12 vs. Tulane on Dec. 28, 2013.
• Nine Wildcats have at least one 3-pointer this season, including a team-best 8-of-16 start by Xavier Sneed.
• K-State has made at least one 3-pointer in 276 consecutive games dating back to the start of the 2008-09 season.
• K-State has put up some impressive defensive numbers under Bruce Weber, leading the Big 12 in scoring defense twice in the past 4 seasons (60.4 ppg. in 2012-13; 65.4 ppg. in 2013-14)... The Wildcats currently rank 2nd in scoring defense (57.5 ppg.)
• K-State has held its first 3 opponents to an average of 57.5 points on 35.9 percent shooting, including 36.5 percent from 3-point range, with 39 assists on 80 made field goals... The Wildcats have also scored 78 points (19.5 ppg.) off 70 turnovers.
• K-State held Robert Morris to just 40 points on 22.8 percent shooting (13-of-57)... It was the fewest points allowed and the lowest field goal percentage since Long Beach State scored 38 points on just 19.6 percent (11-of-56) on Nov. 24, 2013.
• The Wildcats also forced the Colonials into 25 turnovers, which were the most since Lamar had 26 on Nov. 12, 2012.
• K-State is 73-22 under Bruce Weber when holding an opponent to 69 points or less and 10-32 when allowing 70 or more.
• Since Weber’s arrival at K-State in 2012-13 (spanning 137 games), the Wildcats lead the Big 12 in scoring defense at 64.2 points per game (8,790)... The next closest team in that span is Baylor (64.9 ppg.) followed by Oklahoma State (65.3 ppg.).
• 50 opponents have been held to 60 points or less in Weber’s tenure with the Wildcats boasting a 44-6 mark in those contests (losses to Kansas in 2012, Northern Colorado & Kentucky in 2013, Texas Southern & Georgia in 2014 and Texas & OSU in 2016).
QUITE THE RUN
• K-State has been able to change the momentum early this season by holding opponents without a field goal for stretches of nearly 6 minutes in 3 of its first 4 games... The Wildcats held Robert Morris without a field goal for two stretch of 6 minutes or more, including 6:13 of the first half (15:50 mark to the 9:37 mark) and 6:59 of the second half (16:44 mark to the 9:45 mark).
• It marked the third time this season that the Wildcats have held an opponent without a field goal for nearly 6 minutes in the first half, holding Western Illinois (11/11) for 5:57 to start the game and Omaha (11/15) for a season-best 7:35 stretch.
• It was particularly helpful against Omaha, as K-State went from trailing 13-4 at the 14:55 mark to leading 27-15 at the 7:20 mark, resulting in a 23-2 run and included 21 straight points... Omaha turned the ball over 7 times and missed 6 field goals.
• K-State also held WIU to just 2 made field goals (on 12 attempts) in the last 7:35 of the second half, as the Wildcats finished the game on a 25-6 run after the Leathernecks had closed the gap to 57-49 with a layup with 7:51 remaining.
• Although K-State didn’t hold Hampton (11/20) to such a drought, the Wildcats did use a pair of 13-0 runs to take command.
PLAYING HARD IS A SKILL
• One of the things that K-State has prided itself in under head coach Bruce Weber has been its ability to play harder than its opponents... Nothing is more valuable to Weber in this regard as the Wayne McClain Play Hart Chart, which is named in honor of the longtime Illinois high school coach and Wildcats’ former director of development who passed away on Oct. 15, 2014.
• The chart, which is kept for both teams by graduate assistants and team managers, is a point system based on the elements of playing hard, including deflections/blocks, steals, dives, loose balls, offensive rebounds and charges (+2).
• K-State has won the Play Hard Chart in all 4 games, including 53-40 over Robert Morris (11/22).
• Senior D.J. Johnson has a team-best 39 points on the Play Hard Chart and has won the chart in the first 2 games... He has 479 points in his career, which ranks second on the team to fellow senior Wesley Iwundu (513).
• Johnson, who has a team-best 14 Play Hard points vs. Western Illinois (11/11), owns the single-game, individual best for the chart since it was start in 2012-13 with 20 at Iowa State on Feb. 27, 2016.
• Sophomore Dean Wade has won the chart the last 2 games, including 12 vs. Hampton (11/20) and Robert Morris (11/22).
COUNTDOWN TO 400
• Head coach Bruce Weber is closing in a coaching milestone, as he stands just 4 wins shy of 400 in his 19-year coaching career, which includes stints at Southern Illinois (1998-2003), Illinois (2003-12) and now K-State (2012-present).
• Weber would become the 131st Division I head coach to accomplish the feat, including the 51st active coach... Kennesaw State coach Al Skinner (398) needs just 2 wins for 400, while N.C. State coach Mark Gottfried (391) is 9 shy of the milestone... He would be the fourth current Big 12 coach to win 400 games, joining Bob Huggins, Bill Self and Lon Kruger.
• Weber tied Jim Wooldridge (83, 2000-06) on the all-time wins list on Tuesday after passing Lon Kruger (81, 1986-90) earlier this season... He could still pass Charles Corsaut (89, 1923-33) and Tom Asbury (85, 1994-2000).
• Interesting note, Weber is not the only Wildcat head coach that could reach a coaching milestone this season, as football coach Bill Snyder stands 1 win from 200 (all at K-State) and women’s basketball coach Jeff Mittie is 5 wins from 500 in his career.
BROWN OFF TO A FAST START
• Sophomore Barry Brown is off to a solid start to the season, as he is averaging a team-best 15.3 points on 57.1 percent (24-of-42) shooting, including 63.3 percent (19-of-30) from inside the 3-point line.
• Brown led the Wildcats in scoring in the first 2 games, scoring a season-high 18 points with Western Illinois (11/11) on 7-of-11 field goals to go with a game-high 15-point effort on 5-of-11 shooting vs. Omaha (11/15)... He added 16 vs. Hampton (11/20).
• Brown is also doing more than just scoring, as he collected a team-high 3 steals to go with 6 rebounds and 3 assists vs. WIU, while he dished out 5 assists vs. Omaha... He posted a career-best 5 steals vs. Hampton along with 4 rebounds and 3 assists.
• Brown is the only Wildcat to score in double figures in both exhibitions and the first 4 games, posting 17 vs. Pittsburg State (10/28) and 15 vs. Washburn (11/4) in exhibition play... He is averaging 15.5 points during that span on 56.7 percent (34-of-60) shooting, including 64.1 percent (25-of-39) from inside 3-point range.
BEASLEY, MCGRUDER MAKE NBA OPENING DAY ROSTERS
• K-State had two former players on opening day NBA rosters, as Michael Beasley (Milwaukee Bucks) and Rodney McGruder (Miami HEAT) debut for their respective teams on Oct. 26... McGruder earned his first career start vs. Atlanta on Nov. 15.
• K-State is one of six Big 12 teams with multiple NBA players, joining Baylor, Kansas, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State and Texas... It marked the first time multiple Wildcats have been on NBA teams since Beasley (Miami), Bill Walker (Miami) and Cartier Martin (Detroit) all played in the league during the 2014-15 season.
• Beasley, who is entering his ninth NBA season, played the final 20 games of the 2015-16 season with the Houston Rockets after a stint with the Shandong Golden Stars of the Chinese Basketball Association... He was traded to the Bucks in September.
• McGruder, who is entering his first season in the NBA, signed a free-agent contract with the HEAT in July and was able to snag with the final spots on the team’s 15-man roster... He helped the HEAT’s D-League team (Sioux Falls Skyforce) to D-League title.
BOOZER NAMED TO COLLEGIATE BASKETBALL HALL OF FAME
• Two-time All-American Bob Boozer was among 8 individuals announced on March 22 to the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame... He was posthumously inducted on Friday, Nov. 18 as part of the CBE Hall of Fame Classic at the Sprint Center.
• Considered one of the most decorated players in K-State history, Boozer was a first team All-American in both 1958 and 1959 and he averaged a double-double for his 77-game career with 21.9 points on 44 percent shooting with 10.7 rebounds per game. He is one of only two players (Willie Murrell) in school history to average 20 points and 10 rebounds in a career.
PAIR OF FRESHMEN TO MISS 2016-17 SEASON
• Freshmen Cartier Diarra and James Love III are expected to miss the 2016-17 season after going down with injuries.
• Diarra went down with a knee injury in a practice in early July and underwent surgery on July 13.
• Love broke his foot in a practice in late October and underwent surgery on Nov. 5.
• Diarra averaged a double-double of 18.8 points and 11.0 rebounds per game his senior season at West Florence High School en route to earning Class 4A All-State honors from the South Carolina Basketball Coaches Association (SCBCA)... Love averaged 10 points, 13 rebounds and 5 blocks per game as a senior at American Heritage High School in Plantation, Fla.
‘CATS ANNOUNCE THE SIGNINGS OF McGUIRL, SHADD & STOCKARD
• Head coach Bruce Weber announced the signing of high school standouts Mike McGuirl (Ellington, Conn./East Catholic), Nigel Shadd (Chandler, Ariz./Tri-City Christian Academy) and Levi Stockard III (St. Louis, Mo./Vashon) on Nov. 11.
• The trio went a combined 72-8 during their respective junior seasons in 2015-16 with two state titles… They have a combined four state championships in their careers.
• A 6-foot-2, 175-pound guard McGuirl averaged 19 points, 6 rebounds, 4 assists and 4 blocks in 2015-16… He was First Team Class L All-State and selected to FAB 15 All-Courant Team.
• A 6-foot-9, 238-pound forward Shadd averaged 18.5 points on 69.3 percent shooting with 14 rebounds and 3.9 blocks… Twice named to Canyon Athletic Association All-State Teams.
• A 6-foot-8, 240-pound forward Stockard averaged 10 points on 94.7 percent shooting with 5.3 rebounds and 1.8 blocks… Named to Class 4 All-State Team as a junior.
‘CATS JUMP START SEASON WITH EUROPEAN TRIP
• K-State was able to get a jump start on its preparations for the 2016-17 with a 10-day trip to Italy and Switzerland from August 8-19... Aside from the cultural experience of visiting historic landmarks in both countries, the Wildcats were able to play five games against various club, select and national teams and posted a 3-2 record.
• K-State defeated BC Silute (97-80) on August 11, the Italian Select (90-55) on August 13 and BBC Lausanne (68-47) on August 18 with losses to LCC University (75-82) on August 10 and the Kosovo National Team (74-85) on August 16.
• The Wildcats averaged 80.8 points on 43.6 percent shooting (152-of-349) with 45.4 rebounds, 11.8 steals and 11.6 assists per game... Sophomore Kamau Stokes led the way in scoring at 10.8 points per game to go with a team-best 3.0 assists, 3.2 rebounds and 1.6 steals per outing... Stokes had a tour-high 20 points in the loss to the Kosovo National Team.
• Freshman Xavier Sneed, who scored in double figures in the first four contests, also averaged double figures at 10.4 points per game to go with 3.2 rebounds and 1.6 steals per game... Sophomore Dean Wade averaged 9.6 points and 6.2 rebounds per game, while senior D.J. Johnson led the way in rebounding at 6.8 per outing to go with an 8.0 points per game average on 69.6 percent shooting... Five other players averaged better than 5 points per game (Barry Brown (7.6 ppg.), Carlbe Ervin II (6.8 ppg.), Isaiah Maurice (6.2 ppg.), Brian Patrick (6.2 ppg.) and Wesley Iwundu (5.4 ppg.).