K-State begins Big 12 play at No. 11 Texas A&M
K-State begins Big 12 play at No. 11 Texas A&M
Saturday, Jan. 6, 2007
Reed Arena (12,500) in
Tipoff: 7:05 p.m. Central
Series: K-State leads 12-4
TV: ESPN Plus
Talent: Mark Neely (Play-by-Play) and Reid Gettys (Analyst)
Channels: KMCI (
Radio: K-State Sports Network (31 affiliates), Yahoo! Radio
Talent: Wyatt Thompson (Play-by-Play) and Stan Weber (Analyst)
K-State travels to No. 11
The game will be televised regionally on ESPN Plus (KMCI - Kansas City; KSAS - Wichita; KSNT - Topeka) with Mark Neely (play-by-play) and Reid Gettys (color) calling the action. It will be the first of 12 regional broadcasts on the Big 12’s television package for the Wildcats. The audio broadcast can also be heard on the 31-station K-State Sports Network (http://sports.yahoo.com/ncaab/teams/kab) with Wyatt Thompson (play-by-play) and Stan Weber (color) on the call.
A Quick Look at the Wildcats
No. Name PPG RPG
5 Clent Stewart (G, 6-4, 190, Jr.) 4.3 2.0
15 David Hoskins (F, 6-5, 230, Jr.) 13.2 5.4
12 Bill Walker (F, 6-6, 225, Fr.) 13.3 5.1
20 Cartier Martin (F, 6-7, 225, Sr.) 15.3 3.7
34 Akeem Wright (G, 6-6, 210, Sr.) 6.4 5.1
No. Name PPG RPG
2 Blake Young (G, 6-2, 190, Jr.) 7.4 2.3
3 Lance Harris (G, 6-5, 205, Sr.) 10.6 3.8
14 Serge Afeli (F, 6-9, 235, Sr.) 2.0 2.1
23 Jermaine Maybank (G, 6-4, 180, Sr.) 3.2 2.5
42 Darren Kent (F, 6-10, 215, So.) 1.0 1.5
50 Luis Colon (C, 6-10, 275, Fr.) 2.9 2.5
55 Jason Bennett (C, 7-3, 255, Fr.) 3.0 3.8
*With its 72-56 win over
*Kansas State’s current six-game winning streak is the longest for the program since the team collected eight consecutive victories to start the 2004-05 season (Nov. 19 to Dec. 21, 2004)... The streak is even more impressive when you consider that only three of the games came at home... It marked the first time since 1995 that the Wildcats have put together a winning streak of more than five games when half of the games have come away from home.
*Senior forward Cartier Martin was named the most valuable player of the Las Vegas Holiday Classic after averaging 16.8 points in four games... He scored a team-high 23 points against the Lobos... Junior David Hoskins was named to the Classic’s all-tournament team after averaging 15.8 points.
Although he has been
For his efforts, his hiring was dubbed the 2006 sports story of the year in the state of
*For the first time in the 19-year history of Bramlage Coliseum all available season ticket packages have been sold... Season tickets went from 6,500 in 2005-06 to 13,000 in 2006-07... The last time K-State could boast a sellout of season tickets was during the 1982-83 season when the Wildcats played in Ahearn Field House, while the previous high for season tickets in Bramlage Coliseum was 11,700 during the inaugural 1988-89 season.
*In addition to the season ticket sales, the school offered courtside seats for the first time in its history and sold out of the available 25 seats at $4,400 apiece with a waiting list... There are also plans in the works for loge boxes in the arena as well as other improvements, including a practice facility.
*Kansas State has or will play six nationally-televised games this season, including two as apart of ESPN’s “Big Monday” package and two on ABC Sports (both are firsts for the program)... It is the most nationally-televised games in a single-season for the Wildcats in school history.
*Kansas State attracted the consensus No. 1 recruiting class in the country in November according to Scout.com, Rivals.com and Sports Illustrated... The class referred to as the greatest-ever for the school included consensus top 10 prospects Michael Beasley and Bill Walker.
Taking Advantage of Turnovers
One of the biggest factors in
The team scored 65 points off a combined 51 turnovers in back-to-back wins over
The current average of 17.3 turnovers forced per game is the highest by a Wildcat squad in nearly 13 years since Dana Altman’s final squad forced an average of 18.4 turnovers en route to a 20-14 overall record and the NIT Final Four.
Offense Taking Flight
After struggling much of the season on the offensive end,
The 626 points scored during the seven-game stretch are the most by a K-State squad since totaling 676 points against Texas-San Antonio, Missouri-Rolla, Delaware State, Arkansas and Alabama State, Lamar, Temple and Southern Miss to open the 1991-92 season. During the first part of the current streak the Wildcats scored 80 or more points in four consecutive games for the first time since the 1990-91 season. In doing so, the squad has shot 50 percent or better from the field in 10 of their last 16 halves of basketball, including 60 percent or better in four times.
Lift From The Bench
The most telling aspect of the recent bench play has been its diversity. The team has gotten significant scoring from nine players, while one player - senior Akeem Wright - earned a starting job after his impressive play off the bench. Senior Serge Afeli collected a career-high 14 points against
After giving up an average of 81 points in back-to-back losses to
In the win over
After struggling for most of the past five seasons on the road,
The Book on
11th-ranked Texas A&M enters Saturday’s contest with a 12-2 record after earning its fifth consecutive victory on Jan. 2 with a 71-51 win over
The Aggies are averaging 78.3 points on 52.5 percent shooting with 35.9 rebounds and have a very balanced scoring team with four players averaging in double figures and seven connecting on 50 percent or better from the field. Senior point guard Acie Law paces the squad in scoring at 15.1 points per game on 52.6 percent shooting, while junior forward Joseph Jones follows with a 13.3 points per game average to go with a team-high 5.7 rebounds per game. Sophomore guard Josh Carter averages 13.0 points on 53.5 percent shooting and has a team-high 39 3-point field goals, while senior forward Antanas Kaviliauskas adds 12.9 points on a team-best 62.9 percent shooting to go with a team-best 5.7 rebounds per game.
Head coach Billy Gillispie has a 85-51 record in his fifth season as a head coach, including a 55-21 mark in third season at Texas A&M.
This will be the 17th all-time meeting between
K-State in Conference Openers
Kansas State has posted a 35-24 record in conference openers since the formation of the Big Seven Conference in 1948, including a 12-17 mark when opening league play on the road. The Wildcats are 4-6 in conference openers since the inception of the Big 12, including 1-4 when beginning league action away from Bramlage Coliseum. K-State has opened conference play against Texas A&M on one other occasion with the Wildcats posting a 53-48 win in
K-State to retire jersey of Blackman, Knostman
Kansas State Director of Athletics
A native of Brooklyn, N.Y., Blackman is one of just two players to earn first team All-America honors in consecutive seasons in Kansas State history and one of just three (joining fellow retirees Mike Evans and Lon Kruger) to be named Big Eight Conference Player of the Year (1980). He is also just one of three players to earn first team all-conference honors three times (joining Bob Boozer and Mike Evans) in the program’s history. The school’s second all-time leading scorer with 1,844 points, Blackman was the last Wildcat to be selected as a first team All-American when he was named to the Helms Foundation, The Sporting News, Converse Yearbook and John R. Wooden Award All-American squads as a senior in 1981.
The 6-foot-6 native of
Highly-touted freshman forward Bill Walker has certainly lived up to high expectations so far this season. Just five games into his career, he is the team’s third-leading scorer at 13.2 points per game, while he is first in rebounding at 5.4 boards per game.
Walker, who signed a financial aid agreement with the university on Nov. 3, was only able to join the squad on Dec. 16, the first day that a mid-year athlete can become eligible for athletic aid, practice and competition at K-State. He joins the program after exhausting his athletic eligibility at
A 6-foot-6, 225-pound forward from Huntington, W. Va., Walker is one of the most highly-regarded high school recruits to ever join the Kansas State program. A three-year starter at North College Hill, he helped the school to a 26-1 overall record, the state title and a No. 3 final ranking in the USA Today Super 25 High School rankings as a junior in 2005-06. He averaged 21.7 points and 10.1 rebounds en route to earning recognition to the Parade magazine All-America Boys’ Basketball second team. He was also named to the USA Today All-USA High School Boys’ Basketball All-Junior team and to the EA Sports High School Boys’ Basketball First Team. He was named the most valuable player of the 2006 Ohio Division III state tournament, as he averaged 22.5 points, 11.5 rebounds and 4.5 assists per game en route to helping the Trojans to the title.
Hoskins Emerging As A Leader
One of the biggest reasons for
The streak began with a 17-point effort on 6-of-9 shooting against
Hoskins’ play of late is in stark contrast to that of his play in the previous five games, where he averaged just 4.8 points on 31.8 percent shooting.
The Martin of Old
After averaging just 5.5 points on 33.3 percent shooting in the first two games, senior forward Cartier Martin has seemed to return to his old shooting touch that made him a second team All-Big 12 selection a year ago. He has averaged 16.9 points in the last 12 games on 45.3 percent shooting (72-of-159), including 36.5 percent from 3-point range, to bring his season average to a team-best 15.3 points. Martin has scored in double figures in 10 games during the stretch, including five 20-point outputs. He began his current scoring streak by posting a career-high 28 points on a career-best 10-of-19 field goals against Tennessee Tech on Nov. 18. Martin has also turned in 20-point performances against
Martin Joins 1,000-Point Club
Senior forward Cartier Martin joined an elite fraternity at
He enters Saturday’s game against Texas A&M with 1,161 career points, which now ranks 11th in school history, and needs just 24 points to top All-American and jersey retiree Jack Parr (1,184; 1955-58) and crack the school’s top-10. A second team All-Big 12 performer by numerous media outlets last season, Martin became the third player since 1990-91 to top 500 points in a single-season, while his 18.0 scoring average was the highest by a Wildcat since Askia Jones averaged 22.1 points in 1993-94. After recording his 20th 20-point contest against
Harris Stepping Up His Game
Bob Huggins has always been a coach that has gotten the most out of his talent and senior guard Lance Harris has been a prime example of that influence. Harris has averaged 10.6 points on 49.1 percent shooting, including a team-best 40 percent from 3-point range, this season to go with a 3.8 rebounds, 1.7 assists and 0.6 steals per game. He paces the squad in both 3-point field goals (24) and 3-point field goal percentage (40.0), while he is fourth in scoring, field goal percentage and rebounding. Harris has scored in double figures in six contests, including three 20-point efforts. He opened the season with 22 points against William & Mary on Nov. 11 before posting a career-high 26 points against
Young Undergoes Successful Knee Surgery
Junior guard Blake Young underwent successful knee surgery on Dec. 11 at
Young has made an immediate impact for the Wildcats this season after transferring from
At no surprise, freshman center Jason Bennett, the tallest player in school history at 7-foot-3, has made an immediate impact on the defensive end of the court with a freshman-school record 27 blocked shots this season, including a season record-tying six in a loss at
With his three-block effort against Kennesaw State, Bennett broke the freshman mark for blocks in a season (24) set by Shawn Rhodes in 1995-96 and now is just 33 away from eclipsing the school record of 59 set by Gerald Eaker in 1995-96. He has recorded a blocked shot in eight of 14 games this year, while his 2.25 per game average ranks him third in the Big 12. Bennett’s four blocks against William & Mary were the most since Dramane Diarra had his school-tying six against S. F. Austin, while it was the most by a true freshman since Travis Canby registered four against
Through 14 games,
Texas Tech enters Monday’s game with an 11-4 record, which does not include its contest with