PREVIEW: K-State Opens Season vs. Western Illinois Friday


GAME PREVIEW
NOV 11, 8:10 PM

Bramlage Coliseum
Manhattan, KS

NR/NR
WESTERN ILLINOIS
LEATHERNECKS
0-0 (0-0 Summit)

NR/RV
K-STATE
WILDCATS
0-0 (0-0 Big 12)

FSN Kansas City
K-StateHD.TV
ESPN3

TELEVISION
FSN Kansas City (state of Kansas/Kansas City metro area)
K-StateHD.TV (subscription fee)
ESPN3 (outside state of Kansas)
Brian Smoller (play-by-play)
Stan Weber (analyst)
Channel Guide: DirecTV 671-5 | AT&T U-Verse 750/1750  |  Dish 448/412-36

RADIO
K-State Sports Network
Wyatt Thompson (play-by-play)
Matt Walters (analyst)
Satellite Radio: None

LIVE STATS/AUDIO
K-State Game Center at kstatesports.com
Direct Link

TICKETS
kstatesports.com
(800) 221.CATS
$10 (bench), $20 (chairbacks)
Veterans Day Special (GA ticket plus camo hat): $15 | $10 (veterans)
Bramlage Bundle: $20 | $5 (12+group)

COACHES
Kansas State: Bruce Weber (Wis.-Milwaukee ’78)
Overall: 392-209/19th season
At K-State: 79-54/5th season
vs. Western Illinois: 1-0 (1-0 at home)

Western Illinois: Billy Wright (Bradley ‘96)
Overall: 18-37/3rd season
At WIU: same
vs. Kansas State: 0-0

PROJECTED STARTING LINEUP
Kansas State
G: #3 Kamau Stokes
G: #5 Barry Brown
G: #25 Wesley Iwundu
F: #32 Dean Wade
F: #4 D.J. Johnson

Western Illinois
G: #1 Jabari Sandifer
G: #31 Garret Covington
G: #40 C.J. Duff
F: #15 Dalan Ancrum
C: #52 Brandon Gilbeck

INSIDE THE SERIES
Overall: K-State leads 3-0
vs. Summit League: K-State leads 29-2 (28-0 at home)
In Manhattan: K-State leads 3-0 (last meeting: 11/15/2009)
In Macomb: n/a
Current Streak: K-State, 3
Last Meeting: K-State won 82-50 in Manhattan (11/15/2009)
Weber vs. Wright: First meeting

GAME 1 - QUICK HITTERS
Kansas State officially tips off the 113th season of men’s basketball on Friday, as the Wildcats host Summit League member Western Illinois (0-0) in the second game of a doubleheader at Bramlage Coliseum. The game will tip off at 8 p.m. CT following the conclusion of the first game between the K-State women and Chicago State, which is set for 5:30 p.m. CT.
Friday’s opener is the first of four straight for the Wildcats at home to start the season, including Tuesday’s tilt with Omaha at 7 p.m., the Nov. 20 contest with Hampton and Nov. 22 game with Robert Morris.
K-State is 87-25 (.777) all-time in season openers dating back to the first season in 1903, including a 75-9 (.893) mark at home.
The Wildcats are 22-2 (.917) in season openers at Bramlage Coliseum, which includes a 16-game winning streak from 1995-2012. The 2 losses have come to Southern Miss (Nov. 27, 1993) and Northern Colorado (Nov. 8, 2013). Overall, the team is 24-4 (.857) at Bramlage in home openers.
K-State has a 79-5 (.940) record at home in non-conference play dating back to 2006-07, including a 77-4 (.951) mark during the regular season. The squad has won 68 of its last 71 non-conference home games.
The Wildcats went 8-0 at Bramlage Coliseum in non-conference play in 2015-16 with an average margin of victory of 16.5 points per game. The last home non-conference loss came to Georgia on Dec. 31, 2014.
Bruce Weber is 16-2 (.889) in his 18-year head coaching career in openers (Southern Illinois and Illinois), including a 16-1 (.941) mark in home openers. His 2 losses have come in 1998 (SIU) and 2013 (K-State).
Weber is 56-12 (.824) at Bramlage Coliseum since taking over as head coach with only non-conference losses to Northern Colorado (2013), Texas Southern (2014) and Georgia (2014). The 12 losses (9 of which have come in Big 12 play) have come by a total of 61 points (5.1 ppg.).
K-State won its 2015 opener, 80-53, over UMES, as the Wildcats scored 22 points off turnovers and dominated the paint, 38-18. Junior Wesley Iwundu led three Wildcats in double figures with game-highs in points (23) and rebounds (10), while sophomore Barry Brown added 17 points.
Iwundu has double-doubles in 2 of his 3 career openers, averaging 18.5 points on 63.2 percent shooting with 10 rebounds, 3 assists and 2 steals.
K-State went 2-0 in exhibition play defeating Pittsburg State, 85-72, on Oct. 28 and Washburn, 73-58, on Nov. 4. The Wildcats have now won 20 consecutive home exhibition games dating back to 2004.

RECAPPING THE EXHIBITION SEASON
Kansas State went 2-0 in exhibition play, posting an 85-72 win over Pittsburg State on Oct. 28 and a 73-58 win over Washburn on Nov. 4... In all, the Wildcats went 5-2 in exhibition play, which includes a 3-2 mark during its European tour in August.
K-State is 63-20 (.759) all-time in exhibition play dating back to 1964, including a 42-9 (.824) mark at Bramlage Coliseum.
The Wildcats have now won 20 consecutive exhibition games dating back to 2004.
K-State is 8-0 in home exhibition play under head coach Bruce Weber.
K-State is now 6-0 vs. Washburn and 4-0 vs. Pittsburg State in exhibition play.
The Wildcats averaged 79 points during exhibition play on 45.1 percent (55-of-122) shooting from the field, including 37 percent (17-of-46) from 3-point range, with 41.5 rebounds, 14.5 assists, 9.5 steals and 6.0 blocks per game... The squad allowed 65 points on 36.1 percent (44-of-122) shooting, including 28 percent (14-of-50) from 3-point range.
K-State also averaged 31.0 points in the paint, 16.0 points off of turnovers, 8.0 fast-break points and 29.0 bench points.
Sophomore Barry Brown was the only Wildcat to score in double figures in both exhibitions, posting a game-high 17 points vs. Pittsburg State (10/28) on 6-of-11 field goals to go with a 15-point effort vs. Washburn (11/4) on 4-of-7 shooting... Brown averaged 16.0 points on 55.6 percent shooting (10-of-18), including 44.4 percent (4-of-9) from 3-point range.
Senior Wesley Iwundu (12.0 ppg.) and freshman Xavier Sneed (11.0 ppg.) also averaged double figures during exhibition play... Iwundu posted a double-double vs. Washburn (11/4) with a game-high 21 points on 8-of-13 field goals with a game-best 11 rebounds... Sneed scored 13 points vs. Pitt State (10/28) on 6-of-11 field goals to go with a 9-point effort vs. Washburn.
Iwundu led the team in rebounding (7.5 rpg.) and assists (3.0 apg.) in exhibition play.
Six different Wildcats tallied at least 6 made field goals in exhibition play.

THE OPPONENT: WESTERN ILLINOIS
Western Illinois returns 11 lettermen, including three starters, from a team that posted a 10-17 overall record and finished ninth in the Summit League standings... The team welcomes four newcomers, including two community college transfers.
The Leathernecks opened the 2015-16 season with a dramatic 69-67 win over Wisconsin, which was the first of 5 consecutive wins to start the season... However, the team lost 15 of its last 18 games, including a 11-game losing streak.
Western Illinois averaged 70.5 points on 44.4 percent shooting, including 38.8 percent from 3-point range, with 35.1 rebounds, 13.4 assists, 6.0 steals and 3.3 blocks per game in 2015-16... The team allowed 70.9 points per game on 42.9 percent shooting.
WIU returns sharp-shooter Garret Covington, who averaged a team-best 17.9 points on 44.4 percent shooting, including 42.3 percent from 3-point range... Senior Jabari Sandifer also returns after averaging 8.4 points, 4.7 assists and 4.1 rebounds per game a year ago... Covington and Sandifer averaged 33.7 and 32.6 minutes per game, respectively, in 2015-16.
Head coach Billy Wright has an 18-37 overall record entering his third season at the helm.

BREAKING DOWN THE SERIES
Friday’s contest will mark the fourth meeting between K-State and Western Illinois on the hardwood and the first since 2009.
The Wildcats have won the previous three meetings with the Leathernecks, including a 67-57 win on Jan. 9, 1982, a 77-64 win over Nov. 17, 2007 and an 82-50 win on Nov. 15, 2009... This will mark the third meeting at Bramlage Coliseum.
K-State is 29-2 all-time against Summit League schools with a 28-0 record at home... The two losses came at Oral Roberts in 1978 and 1985... Western Illinois is the first of back-to-back Summit League foes to start the season, as the Wildcats host Omaha on Tuesday... K-State went 1-0 vs. the Summit League in 2015-16, posting a 93-72 win over South Dakota on Nov. 20, 2015.

NON-CONFERENCE SUCCESS
K-State has a 79-5 record at home in non-conference play dating back to 2006-07, including a 77-4 mark during the regular season... The Wildcats has won 68 of their last 71 non-conference home games.
K-State went 9-0 in games played at home in 2015-16, winning by an average margin of 15.2 points per game.
K-State went 12-3 overall in non-conference play in 2015-16, topping double-digit wins for the first time since 2013-14... The Wildcats had a streak of eight consecutive seasons with at least 10 non-conference wins from 2006-07 to 2013-14.
K-State was a stellar 13-1 in non-conference games in 2009-10, while the squad won 12 games each in 2008-09 and 2010-11, 11 games each in 2006-07, 2011-12 and 2012-13 and 10 in 2007-08 and 2013-14.

‘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.).

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.

UP NEXT: OMAHA (0-0)

K-State returns to action on Tuesday, Nov. 15 when the Wildcats play host to Omaha at 7 p.m.