'Cats Crack the Coaches Top 10

MANHATTAN, Kan. - Kansas State rose in both major polls on Monday, as the Wildcats jumped two spots to No. 10 in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches poll and one spot to No. 11 in The Associated Press Top 25.

The winners of 10 straight, including victories over two Top 25 squads, K-State (13-1) earned its first Top 10 ranking in the Coaches poll since USA Today took over ownership of the poll in 1991-92.  The No. 11 ranking is still the highest in the AP poll since head coach Jack Hartman led the Wildcats to a No. 9 ranking in the poll on March 13, 1973 with a 23-5 record.  In addition, it is the highest ranking prior to conference play since K-State was ranked No. 10 in the preseason poll in 1965.    

After receiving votes in both polls for most of the season, the Wildcats jumped into both respective polls on Dec. 21 at No. 17 in the AP poll and No. 22 in the coaches' poll.  Those rankings marked the first ranking since the 2007-08 season when the team checked in at No. 24 on Feb. 19, 2008. 

Kansas State is off to the second-best start in school history and the best since the 1958-59 team opened the year with an identical 13-1 overall record.  This is the fifth Wildcat squad to win 13 or more games at this point in the season, joining the 1918-19, 1947-48, 1957-58 and 1958-59 teams.  Only one other squad - the 1918-19 team which won its first 17 games - has a better record after 14 games. 

The Wildcats capped non-conference play on Sunday with a 91-69 win over South Dakota, which tied the 1993-94 team for the most non-conference wins (13) in school history.  The 10-game winning streak ties five other squad for the ninth-longest in school history and the longest since the 1993-94 team won 10 from Dec. 1, 1993 to Jan. 5, 1994.  It is the 15th double-digit winning streak in school history.  The win also extended its winning streak at Bramlage Coliseum to 12 games, which ties for the longest streak in the arena's history and the longest encompassing one season.  The Wildcats have won 15 in a row at home over non-ranked teams.

Kansas State opens Big 12 play on Saturday when the Wildcats travel to Missouri to face the Tigers at 1 p.m. CT at Mizzou Arena.  The game will be broadcast nationally on ESPN2.