No. 24 K-State travels north to face Nebraska

game information
24/25 kansas state (18-6, 8-2 Big 12)
vs. nebraska (14-9, 3-7 Big 12)

Wednesday, February 20, 2008
Tipoff: 8:05 p.m. CT
Location: Lincoln, Neb.
Arena: Devaney Sports Center (1976)
Capacity: 13,595

Series: K-State leads 122-91
(Nebraska leads 58-34 at home)

Television: ESPN2   
Dave Barnett (play-by-play)
Carolyn Peck (analyst)
Steve Ackels (producer)
Preben Martin (director)

Radio: K-State Sports Network;
Powercat Passport Internet Audio;  
Yahoo! Internet Radio, Sirius Satellite 158
Wyatt Thompson (play-by-play)
Stan Weber (analyst)

Tickets: Available for $15 (upper bench) and $20 (upper back) by calling the Nebraska Athletic Ticket Office at 800.824.4733

kansas state wildcats
Record: 18-6 (8-2 Big 12)
Ranking (AP/Coaches): 24/25
Coach: Frank Martin
Alma Mater: Florida International, 93
Career Record: 18-6/1
School Record: 18-6/1
vs. Nebraska: 1-0
06-07 Record: 23-12 (10-6 Big 12)
Last game: Feb. 16, 2008
defeated Missouri, 100-63
SID: Tom Gilbert
Website: www.k-statesports.com

nebraska cornhuskers
Record: 14-9 (3-7 Big 12)
Ranking (AP/Coaches): nr/nr
Coach: Doc Sadler
Alma Mater: Arkansas 82
Career Record: 79-41/4
School Record: 31-23/2
vs. Kansas State: 1-2
06-07 Record: 17-14 (6-10 Big 12)
Last game: Feb. 16, 2008
lost at Iowa State, 60-52
SID: Jerry Trickie
Website: www.huskers.com

game preview
No. 24/25 Kansas State (18-6, 8-2 Big 12) hits the road for the first of back-to-back away contests, as the Wildcats travel to Lincoln, Neb., on Wednesday to face Nebraska (14-9, 3-7 Big 12) at 8 p.m. CT.  The team will look to regain their momentum on the road, as they have dropped consecutive contests at Missouri (77-74) and Texas Tech (84-75) after starting league play with victories at Oklahoma (84-82) and Colorado (72-56).  The game will start a crucial stretch where the Wildcats will play four of their last six games on the road.

Wednesday’s contest will be televised nationally on ESPN2 with Dave Barnett (play-by-play) and Carolyn Peck (analyst) calling the action.  It will be the 11th of a school-record 13 appearances on national television for the Wildcats, including the third time on ESPN2.  The team is 1-10 all-time on ESPN2, including 0-3 this season. K-State lost to George Mason, 87-77, on the network on Nov. 22, 2007, dropped an 80-77 decision to No. 17 Oregon on Nov. 29, 2007 and just last week lost at Texas Tech, 84-75, on Feb. 13.  

The game will be broadcast on the 31-station K-State Sports Network (Powercat Passport Internet Audio; Yahoo! Internet Radio) with Wyatt Thompson (play-by-play) and Stan Weber (analyst) behind the mikes.  Fans can also listen to the game on Sirius Satellite 158.

Kansas State continued its impressive play at home, as the Wildcats eclipsed the 100-point mark in Big 12 play for the first time in over 10 years with a 100-63 win over Missouri on Saturday.  With the win, the team tied two other squads (1998-99 and 2006-07) for the most wins (14) in a single season at Bramlage Coliseum, while it ran its overall winning streak at home to 10 games (second-longest streak in the Bramlage era) and seven in a row in Big 12 play.  The Wildcats have won their 14 home contests by an average of 23.8 points per game, including an average of 21.3 points in the six Big 12 home games.

Kansas State topped the 100-point plateau in conference play for the first time since scoring 111 against Missouri on Jan. 3, 1998.  The team shot 50.0 percent from the field, including 53.3 percent in the first half, and out-rebounded the smaller Tigers, 47-25.  The Wildcats, who had shot just 58.7 percent (54-of-92) from the free throw line in the previous four games, converted on 83.3 percent from the charity stripe on a season-best 36 attempts.  The team remains in the thick of the Big 12 race, as they trail No. 4 Kansas (24-2, 9-2 Big 12) and No. 7 Texas (22-4, 9-2 Big 12) by just a half-game for first place.

Freshman Michael Beasley led the scoring attack for the 19th time this season with season-tying 40 points on 12-of-22 field goals to go with a team-high 17 rebounds in 27 minutes.  In gaining his nation’s best 21st double-double, he became the first player in school history to tally two 40-point, 10-rebound efforts in the same season.  Fellow rookie Bill Walker joined him in double figures for the 13th straight game with 18 points to go with nine rebounds and four assists.

the book on kansas state
Kansas State remained in both major Top 25 polls on the Monday for the fourth consecutive week, dropping six spots in The Associated Press poll to No. 24 and three spots in the ESPN/USA Today poll to No. 25.  The squad returned to both major polls on Jan. 28 for the first time since November.  The program opened the season with its first preseason ranking since 1975 in The Associated Press poll and climbed to as high as No. 18 before falling out on Dec. 3.   

Kansas State’s 18-6 start to the season is the best by a Wildcat squad in 26 seasons since the 1981-82 squad also started 18-6.  The 8-2 start to league play is the best in the Big 12 era and the best since the 1974-75 team began Big Eight play with an 8-2 mark.

Kansas State is averaging 80.8 points on 44.8 percent shooting with 42.9 rebounds, 16.7 assists, 8.1 steals and 3.8 blocks per game, while holding their foes to 66.9 points on 40.4 percent shooting.  Only one team at Kansas State - the 1952-53 squad -  has averaged 80 or more points for a season, which averaged 81.4 points in 21 games.  The Wildcats rank among the top-25 nationally in scoring (20th), scoring margin (20th) and assists (25th).  The team has topped 80 or more points in 12 games (all wins), which equals or surpasses the single-season totals of 80-point games from the last 17 seasons.         

A trio of Wildcats are averaging in double figures led by Beasley, who ranks fourth nationally in scoring at 25.7 points per game.  Beasley, who paces the nation in rebounding at 12.6 per game, is shooting 54.8 percent from the field to go with 1.6 blocks, 1.5 steals and 1.3 assists in 30.6 minutes per game.  He leads the squad in 15 categories, including scoring, double-doubles (21), 20-point games (19), field goals (223), free throws (145), rebounds, blocks, steals and minutes. 

Beasley, who became the first player in Big 12 history to win any weekly award in four consecutive weeks when he was selected the Rookie of the Week on Monday, leads the conference in scoring and rebounding in both overall and league-only games.  He has a school-record 21 double-doubles, which is one shy of the all-time freshman record set by Syracuse’s Carmelo Anthony (22) in 2002-03. 

Rookie Bill Walker ranks second to Beasley in numerous categories, including scoring (16.4 ppg.), rebounding (6.7 rpg.), field goals (127), field goal attempts (272), blocks (16), double-digit scoring (19) and double-doubles (three).  Since being moved back to the interior 16 games ago, Walker is averaging 18.3 points on 49 percent shooting, including 39.7 percent from 3-point range, with 6.9 rebounds in 26.1 minutes per game.  He has now scored in double figures in 23 of 28 career games, including 19 of 22 games this season.

The backcourt of Jacob Pullen, Clent Stewart and Blake Young has also continued to play well for the Wildcats.  Pullen, who started the team’s first nine games, is first on the team in assists (3.3 apg.) and 3-point field goals (28) and third in scoring (10.2 ppg.).  During the last seven games, Pullen has averaged 12.6 points on 45.3 percent shooting (29-of-64), including 41.4 percent shooting (12-of-29), with 3.0 assists and 1.0 steals in 25.1 minutes per game. 

The team’s most experienced player with 112 appearances and 86 starts, Stewart returned to the team against Texas Tech on Feb. 13 after missing the previous two games following the passing of his mother, Vanessa, who lost her battle with bone cancer on Feb. 4.  The Wildcats will continue to wear a patch on their uniforms bearing her initials.  Young, who has the longest current game streak at 59 games, ranks fourth in rebounding (3.3 rpg.) and fifth in scoring (6.3 ppg.). 

homecourt advantage
Bramlage Coliseum continues to be one of the best home courts in the Big 12 Conference, as the Wildcats have constructed a 229-84 (.732) mark at home since the arena opened in 1988.  The team has proven to be even better in the last seven seasons, where they have posted double-digit win totals each season and an 89-27 (.767) overall. 

With the win over Missouri, K-State tied the Bramlage Coliseum record with its 14th home victory of the season.  The squad has won 10 straight overall and seven in a row in Big 12 dating back to last year.  The current winning streak is the second-longest winning streak in Bramlage Coliseum history and just one short of the record 11 set in 1997-98.  The Wildcats already have two victories at home over top-10 opponents (No. 2 Kansas and No. 10 Texas A&M), which has not happened in the same season since K-State knocked off No. 1 Missouri and No. 3 Oklahoma during the 1989-90 season.

success for both men and women
One of the best stories in college basketball this season has been the rise of both the men’s and women’s squads at Kansas State.  The 15th-ranked women’s team has won 13 of its last 14 games, which includes a 10-game winning streak from Dec. 28 to Feb. 2, and is now taken over sole possession of first-place in the Big 12 with an 18-6 overall record and a 10-1 mark in league play.  The 24th-ranked men are off to their best start since the 1981-82 season and their best start since the inception of the Big 12.  Both teams continue to be ranked in the AP Top 25 in the same week for the fourth straight week, which has never happened in the programs’ respective histories.

off to a good start
First-year head coach Frank Martin has posted an impressive debut as the Wildcats’ mentor.  His 18-6 start to his career is now the best start ever by a first-year head coach, while his 8-2 start in league play is also the best by a rookie coach.   His 18 victories have already surpassed the win totals of some of the program’s most legendary coaches, including Jack Gardner (6), Tex Winter (11), Cotton Fitzsimmons (14) and Jack Hartman (11).  Bob Huggins set the mark for most wins by a first-year coach with 23 in 2006-07.  His 18 wins are the seventh-most among all first-year coaches this season in Division I and fourth-most among coaches in their first college jobs. 

turning up the offense
Since posting a season-low 59 points against Notre Dame on Dec. 4, Kansas State has turned up its offense in the last 16 games.  The squad is averaging 82.8 points on 45.9 percent shooting (459-of-999), including 37.6 percent from 3-point range (117-of-311), during that span after averaging 76.9 points on 42.6 percent shooting, including 25.9 from beyond the arc, in the first eight.  Most notably, the team has scored 80 or more points 10 times (all wins) in the last 15 games compared to just twice (both wins) in the first eight.  Also, the squad has eclipsed the 100-point barrier twice in the span, which has not been done twice in the same season since 1997-98.

turning up the offense, part 2
Kansas State has scored 75 or more points in 13 of the last 16 games, including a span of eight consecutive games from Dec. 9, 2007 to Jan. 19, 2008, which tied the 1960-61 squad for the most in school history.  With 75 points against No. 10 Texas A&M, the team hit the mark for the school-record eighth game in a row, surpassing the seven done by the 1976-77 squad.  The Wildcats have already topped the 80-point mark in 12 contests, which surpasses the total from last season.  It also equals or surpasses the totals from the previous 17 seasons and is the most since the 1988-89 squad did it 15 times.
 
Kansas State has scored at least 75 points in 19 of its 24 games this season.  The 19 games of at least 75 points equals or surpasses the entire total from the past 20 seasons, including the 10 in 2006-07.  The last time the school had more than 19 games of 75 or more points was the 1986-87 season, which produced 20 such contests.

okay, we’re going with the opposite
The trend so far this season has been that Kansas State tends to get better as the game goes, as the team is averaging 41.9 points on 48.4 percent shooting (including 33.5 percent from 3-point range) in the second half this season.  In comparison, the Wildcats are averaging 38.2 points on 41.4 percent shooting (including 33.3 percent from 3-point range) in the first half this season.  However, in the last five games, this trend has turned with the squad averaging 41.4 points on 48.7 percent shooting in the first half in comparison to 39.6 points in the second half on 41.6 percent shooting.  After topping the 40-point barrier just six times in the season’s first 19 first halves, the team has eclipsed the barrier in three of the last five games.  In comparision, K-State has posted 40 or more points in the second half of 16 games, including three 50-point outings.  The team has also connected on 50 percent or better from the field in the second half of 11 contests.       

defense overlooked
Although, K-State gets lots of recognition for its impressive offensive output, the defense tends to get overlooked.  The Wildcats have held 15 of their 24 opponents to below 70 points, including 12 below 65 points, while 12 foes have been held to 40 percent shooting or less.  The team has been particularily solid on the defensive end in Big 12 play, holding six teams to 65 points or less and five to shooting below 40 percent.  In wins over Texas A&M, Colorado, Iowa State, Nebraska, Oklahoma State and Missouri, the squad allowed just 58.3 points on 37.8 percent shooting with 43.7 rebounds and 9.3 steals per game. 
  
the book on nebraska (14-9)
Nebraska (14-9, 3-7 Big 12) saw its losing streak hit two games on Saturday, as Iowa State rallied from a 13-point deficit in the second half to post a 60-52 win over the Cornhuskers in Ames, Iowa.  The team has as lost three of its last four games since positing back-to-back wins over Missouri and Iowa State, including a 74-59 setback to Kansas State on Feb. 6.  Nebraska held Iowa State to just 11 points on 19 percent shooting in the first half, however, the Cyclones rallied to score 49 points on 58.3 percent in the second half to post the victory.  Freshman guard Cookie Miller led three players in double figures with a game-high 14 point to go with a five steals and four assists, while senior center Aleks Maric posted 11 points and 13 rebounds.

Nebraska is averaging a 67.9 points on 45 percent shooting, including 34 percent from 3-point range, with 34.9 rebounds, 14.4 assists, 8.7 steals and 3.0 blocks per game.  The team is holding foes to 60.2 points per game on 39.5 percent shooting from the field. 

A balanced scoring squad, the team has five players scoring seven or more points led by Aleks Maric’s 16.2-point per game average.  He has connected on 55.3 percent from the field to go with a team-high 9.7 rebounds per game.  Sophomore Ryan Anderson averages 9.2 points to go with a team-high 38 3-pointers and 6.0 rebounds per game, while junior Ade Dagunduro adds 8.8 points and 3.9 rebounds.

The team is led by head coach Doc Sadler, who has a 79-41 record in four years overall as a head coach and a 31-23 mark in his second season at Nebraska.  Sadler, who posted the third-most wins by a first-year coach in school history, spent two years as the head coach at Texas-El Paso from 2004-06.  He led the Miners to consecutive postseason appearances, including the NCAA Tournament in 2005.  He spent five years as the head coach at Arkansas-Fort Smith from 1998 to 2003, where he guided the squad to a 120-39 record, before becoming an assistant to Billy Gillispie at UTEP in 2003. 

series vs. nebraska
This will be the 214th all-time meeting between Kansas State and Nebraska in a series that dates back to 1906.  The Wildcats lead the all-time series, 122-91, including a 71-30 advantage in games played in Manhattan.  K-State holds a narrow 14-10 edge in the series since the inception of the Big 12, however, Nebraska has won eight of the 11 games in that span at home.  The teams have split the last four meetings in Lincoln with the Wildcats winning 63-58 on Feb. 18, 2004 and 66-64 on March 1, 2006.  The Huskers won the last meeting, 74-63, on Feb. 13, 2007 with Aleks Maric scoring a career-high 41 points.

This will be the second meeting between Frank Martin and Doc Sadler on the hardwood.  Sadler has a 1-2 record against K-State.       

last meeting vs. nebraska
After seeing its six-game winning streak come to end four days earlier, Kansas State rebounded to post 74-59 win over Nebraska on Feb. 6.  The Wildcats have now won 10 of the 12 home meetings with the Huskers since the start of the Big 12, including six of the last seven.  

K-State shot an impressive 56.1 percent in the first half and held a 45-30 lead at the break before holding court in the second half to post a 74-59 win.  The Wildcats shot just 36.7 percent after halftime, but the Huskers were held to just 35.7 percent shooting.  Freshman Michael Beasley had 35 points and 13 rebounds to set a school record with his 18th double-double, while fellow rookies Bill Walker and Jacob Pullen added 17 and 11 points, respectively. Senior Aleks Maric posted 16 points and 15 rebounds and junior Ade Dagunduro and freshman Cookie Miller each added 14 points for the Huskers.    
 
the streak is over!
Kansas State ended 24 years of frustration against archrival and No. 2 Kansas in Manhattan with an 84-75 win on Jan. 30.  It marked the squad’s first victory over the Jayhawks at home since an 58-57 win at Ahearn Field House on Jan. 29, 1983 and the first-ever at Bramlage Coliseum, ending a 19-game losing streak.  It was also the highest ranked team to fall to the Wildcats in 14 years since they knocked off No. 1 Kansas, 68-64, on Jan. 17, 1994 and the highest at home since stunning No. 1 Missouri, 65-58, on Feb. 8, 1990.  The win also left Memphis as the lone undefeated team in the nation.  The 84 points were the most allowed by Kansas this season and the most in the series in more 29 years since a 96-69 Wildcat win on Jan. 20, 1979.

beasley, walker among the best
Freshmen Michael Beasley and Bill Walker are starting to prove they are two of the best players in Big 12.  The pair are the only rookies to rank in the top-10 in both scoring and rebounding in the Big 12.  In fact, they rank 1-2 in the league in scoring in conference-only games. 

Beasley paces the league in four categories - scoring (25.7 ppg.), rebounding (12.6 rpg.), offensive rebounds (4.38 rpg.) and defensive rebounds (8.25 rpg.) - and is the top-15 in four others - field goal percentage (third - 54.8), blocked shots (third - 1.63 bpg.), steals (11th - 1.46) and free throw percentage (12th - 74.0).  He owns the most double-doubles (21) and the most 30-point games (nine).

Walker ranks fifth in the Big 12 in scoring (16.4 ppg.) and ninth (6.7 rpg.) in rebounding.  He places among the top-15 in three categories, including sixth in offensive rebounds (2.86 rpg.), eighth in field goal percentage (46.7) and 15th in free throw percentage (70.8).

among best scoring tandems
Michael Beasley and Bill Walker are among the best scoring tandems in Division I, as they rank fourth nationally with a combined at 42.1 points per game.  The duo trails Niagara’s Charron Fisher (28.2 ppg.) and Tyrone Lewis (16.5 ppg.), VMI’s Reggie Williams (27.1 ppg.) and Chavis Holmes (17.1 ppg.) and  Tennessee-Martin’s Lester Hudson (25.8 ppg.) and Marquis Weddle (16.4 ppg.) among all scoring tandems in Division I.  Beasley and Walker are one of just five duos nationally to combine for 40 or more points and the only ones that are both freshman.  The 42.1 points per game average is also on track to the best by a scoring duo in Big 12 history, just three-hundredths of point ahead of the 41.9 points averaged by Texas Tech’s Cory Carr (23.1 ppg.) and Tony Battie (18.8 ppg.) in 1996-97.  Even more impressive is the fact that two players are combining for 45.5 points per game in league-only games and rank 1-2 in the Big 12 in scoring in these games (Beasley - 27.7 ppg. and Walker - 17.8 ppg.).

top scoring tandems in division I (all classes)
44.7, Charron Fisher (28.2) & Tyrone Lewis (16.5), Niagara
44.2, Reggier Williams (27.1) & Chavis Holmes (17.1), VMI
42.2, Lester Hudson (25.8) & Marquis Weddle (16.4), UT-Martin
42.1, Michael Beasley (25.7) & Bill Walker (16.4), K-State
40.1, Ben Woodside (21.0) & Brett Winkelman (19.1), NDSU

top scoring tandems in division I (freshmen)
42.1, Michael Beasley (25.7) & Bill Walker (16.4), K-State
32.8, Donte Greene (17.6) & Jonny Flynn (15.2), Syracuse
32.1, O.J. Mayo (19.5) & Davon Jefferson (12.6), USC

top scoring tandems in big 12 history
42.1, Michael Beasley (25.7) & Bill Walker (16.4), K-State
41.9, Cory Carr (23.1) & Tony Battie (18.8), Texas Tech (1996-97)
41.3, Kevin Durant (25.8) & A.J. Abrams (15.5), Texas (2006-07)
40.2, Paul Pierce (20.4) & Raef LaFrentz (19.8), Kansas (1997-98)
37.6, Kareem Rush (21.1) & Clarence Gilbert (16.5), Missouri (2000-01)

more beasley and walker
Michael Beasley and Bill Walker are just the fourth duo in Kansas State history (the first freshman duo) to each score 30 or more points at least twice in the same season and the first in 30 years.  The duo joins Bob Boozer (2) and Jack Parr (2) in 1956-57, Mike Evans (2) and Chuckie Williams (4) in 1975-76 and Mike Evans (3) and Curtis Redding (3) in 1977-78.

With his 40-point performance against Missouri on Feb. 16, Beasley now has notched nine contests of 30 or more points this season, which has already surpassed Bob Boozer (7, 1958-59) and Norris Coleman (7, 1985-86) for the most in a single season in Kansas State history.  He also ranks second for most 30-point games in school history, just one shy of leader Bob Boozer (10, 1956-59).
With his effort against the Tigers, Beasley remains the nation’s leader in 30-point, 10-rebound games (four more than VMI’s Reggie Williams).  He is also the Division I leader in 20-point, 10-rebound games with 17 (five more than Santa Clara’s John Bryant). 

In comparison to other recent National Freshmen of the Year, Beasley’s nine 30-point, 10-rebound games are two more than Kevin Durant’s entire total from the 2006-07 season (35 games) and three times as many as Carmelo Anthony’s total (3) during the 2002-03 season.  Walker, who has notched his two 30-point games in the last 16, ties seven other players including notable players Bob Boozer, Mike Evans, Steve Henson and Jack Parr for the 13th-most in a single season.  He posted his first career 30-point game against California on Dec. 9 and then topped it with 31 points against Xavier on Dec. 31.

newcomers a big part of success
One of the nation’s top recruiting classes have had a dramatic impact for Kansas State this season, as the newcomers have posted over 60 percent of the Wildcats’ points (1158) and blocks (54) and over 50 percent of the rebounds (536), steals (109) and assists (178). 

Most of these have come from phenom Michael Beasley, who owns over 30 percent of the team’s points (617) and rebounds (303).  He has already shattered Ed Nealy’s (230; 1979) freshman mark for rebounds, while broke Norris Coleman’s (609; 1986) rookie record for points for his 40-point effort against Missouri.  In all, four of the top-7 scorers and two of the top-3 rebounders are either freshmen or first-year players in the program.  If you include redshirt freshman Bill Walker, who played just six games last season due to a knee injury, the totals increase to over 75 percent of the points (1519) and blocks (70) and over 65 percent of the rebounds (676) and steals (131).

okay, this guy’s pretty good
Freshman Michael Beasley became the first player in Big 12 history to win any weekly award in four consecutive weeks, as he was named as the Phillips 66 Big 12 Rookie of the Week after averaging 31.0 points and 16.0 rebounds against Texas Tech and Missouri last week.  The streak of four straight weekly awards for Beasley is the second-longest string of consecutive honors in Big 12 history in any league-sponsored sport.  The longest streak is eight weeks in a row by Oklahoma’s Courtney Paris, who did it to end the 2005-06 season.  Beasley’s six rookie honors is tied for the most in Big 12 history with Texas’ Kevin Durant in 2006-07.  The player of the week award is his eighth overall this season after he earned Big 12 Player of the Week honors on Nov. 12 and Jan. 14 and Rookie of the Week accolades on Nov. 19, Dec. 26, Jan. 28, Feb. 4, Feb. 11 and Feb. 18.

beasley nets 40 again
Michael Beasley became the first player in Kansas State history to post two 40-point, 10-rebound performances in the same season, as he collected a season-tying 40 points on 12-of-22 field goals with 17 rebounds in just 27 minutes against Missouri on Feb. 16.  He also topped the 40-point plateau against Winston-Salem State on Dec. 22, as he posted 40 points on 14-of-22 shooting with 15 rebounds in 23 minutes.  In fact, a 40-point, 10-rebound effort had only been recorded twice in school history prior to this season, as Bob Boozer had 45 points and 16 rebounds against Purdue on Dec. 1, 1958 and Mike Wroblewski had 46 points and 12 rebounds against Kansas on Feb. 7, 1962.  

His first 40-point effort against Winston-Salem State broke Norris Coleman’s (39 vs. Colorado, Jan. 18, 1986) freshman mark for points.  In doing so, he became the ninth Wildcat in to record a 40-point game, while tying Mike Evans (40 vs. Colorado, 1/15/77) for the eighth-highest scoring total in a game.  The 40 points are the most since Askia Jones tallied a school-record 62 points against Fresno State in the second round of the Postseason NIT on March 24, 1994.  His 40-point effort against Missouri tied Mike Evans for the fifth-highest scoring mark in a conference game in school history and was the highest by a Wildcat in a league contest since Steve Henson had 41 points against Iowa State on Feb. 17, 1990.  

double-double
Michael Beasley will look to become just the sixth player in school history and the first since Gene Williams in 1968-69 to average a double-double for a single-season.  He is averaging 25.7 points and 12.6 rebounds per game through 24 games with 21 double-doubles.  He would join Bob Boozer (1956-59), Jack Parr (1955-58), Larry Comley (1960-61), Willie Murrell (1962-64) and Gene Williams (1968-69) as only players to average a double-double for a season.

Beasley’s 21 double-doubles are one shy of the all-time record for most-ever by a Division I freshman.  The record-holder is Carmelo Anthony, who had 22 (including 18 in regular season) in 2002-03.  Remarkably, Boozer and Parr averaged a double-double in three
consecutive seasons, while Murrell accomplished it back-to-back seasons.  At his current pace, Beasley could also top the school
single-season scoring and rebounding averages held by Bob Boozer (25.6 ppg. in 1958-59) and Jack Parr (14.5 rpg. in 1956-57).

historic beginning
Michael Beasley had a memorable first game as a Wildcat, he set three school records as well as two Big 12 marks in helping Kansas State to a season-opening victory over Sacramento State on Nov. 9.  He posted 32 points on 12-of-20 field goals with 24 rebounds, four assists, four blocks and two steals in 31 minutes. 

Beasley is just the third player in school history to top 30 points and 20 rebounds in a single-game and the first since Bob Boozer (36 points, 23 rebounds) did it against Colorado in 1957.  The 32 points were the most points by a freshman in a debut in both Kansas State and Big 12 history, while the 24 rebounds were the most by a freshman in a single-game and the third-most by a Wildcat in school history.  The 24 rebounds also eclipsed the all-class Big 12 record of 23 held by Kevin Durant (2006) and Nick Collison (2003).

On Nov. 11, Beasley became just the third player in school history (and first freshman) to tally 30 points in back-to-back games in a win over Pittsburg State.  He tallied 30 points on 12-of-19 shooting with 14 rebounds in 29 minutes.  He is the first player to top 30 points in consecutive games since Askia Jones in January 1994.

first with two 20-point/20-rebound games
Michael Beasley became the first player in Big 12 history to collect two 20-point/20-rebound performances in a single season with his 28-point, 22-rebounds effort against Western Illinois on Nov. 19.  In the first 11 years of Big 12 competition, only nine players had posted 20-point/20-rebound games in their career and none had ever done it more than once in their respective careers.  He is just the second player in school history to accomplish the feat twice in a season and the first since Jack Parr did it twice during the 1955-56 season. 

walker emerging as a star
The former high school All-American is finally healthy after playing in just six games as a true freshman in 2006-07 before going down with a season-ending ACL injury at Texas A&M in the first Big 12 contest.

Walker is second to Michael Beasley in both scoring (16.4 ppg.) and rebounding (6.7 rpg.), while he is third in steals (1.0 spg.) and fourth in free throw percentage (70.8).  He has now scored in double figures in 23 of his 28 career games, including 19 of 22 games this season.  Walker might be playing the finest basketball of his Wildcat career in the team’s last 16 games.  In gaining the start in each of these contests, he is averaging 18.3 points on 49 percent shooting (103-of-210), including 39.7 percent shooting (25-of-63) from 3-point range, with 6.9 rebounds, 2.2 assists and 0.8 steals in 26.1 minutes per game.  He has connected on 71.3 percent (62-of-87) from the free throw line during his current playing streak.

After battling through a variety injuries to start the season, Walker has played in 18 straight games for the Wildcats, including a career-high 35 minutes of action against California on Dec. 9.  He set or tied career-highs in nine categories against the Bears with 30 points on 7-of-22 field goals with 10 rebounds, two assists and four steals.  He posted his second 30-point outing of his career with his career-best 31-point effort against Xavier (12/31).  He went a career-high 13-of-23 from the field with six rebounds in 34 minutes.  Walker has been just as impressive during Big 12 play, averaging 17.8 points on 49.6 percent shooting, including 37.2 percent from 3-point range.

After suffering through a variety of aliments to start the season, where he missed two of the first five games, Walker began to turn the corner on the final day of the Old Spice Classic.  He posted his first career double-double against Rider on Nov. 25 with 14 points and a new career-high 10 rebounds.  He continued his impressive play against Notre Dame with a season-tying 14 points on 6-of-11 field goals with six rebounds, two steals and two blocks.

walker named big 12 rookie of the week again
Freshman forward Bill Walker earned Phillips 66 Big 12 Rookie of the Week honors for the second time on Jan. 21 in helping the Wildcats topple a top-10 opponent for the first time since 2004.   In his lone game of the week, Walker posted 19 points on 6-of-14 shooting, including 5-of-10 from 3-point range, in helping Kansas State earn a 75-54 win over No. 10 Texas A&M.  He also added four rebounds, three assists, two blocks and two steals in 31 minutes.

Walker earned his first Big 12 Rookie of the Week honor on Dec. 10, 2007 after averaging 22.0 points and 8.0 rebounds in games against Notre Dame and California.  He is the second Kansas State player to earn Big 12 Rookie of the Week honors twice this season after fellow freshman Michael Beasley.  In all, either Beasley or Walker has captured Player or Rookie of the Week honors 10 times this year.

iron man
A team mainstay the past three seasons, senior guard Clent Stewart has become a guiding force for a young squad.  Although he missed two games due to the death of his mother, Vanessa, Stewart had been a steady force during a crucial stretch.  In the 12 games before his absence, he averaged 9.3 points on 44.3 percent shooting with 3.3 assists, 3.3 rebounds and 1.2 steals in 30 minutes. 

Stewart continues to move up the career charts in three categories (assists, minutes played and games started), in this, his last season at K-State.  With two assists against Oregon on Nov. 29, he broke his second-place tie with Tyrone Adams (1979-82) for career assists with 318.  With 363 assists, Stewart now trails just leader Steve Henson (585, 1987-90) on the all-time list.  He currently sits in fourth place all-time in minutes played with 3,022, just 69 minutes away from passing former teammate Cartier Martin (3,090; 2003-07) for third place.  At his current pace, he should finish in the top-3 behind only Steve Henson (4,474; 1987-90) and Askia Jones (3,547; 1990-94).  In addition, he is now in sixth place on the games started list with his 86th career start against Missouri.  He is also one game shy from breaking into the top-10 for career games played (112).

young comes through in the clutch
Senior Blake Young has been one of the biggest keys to the team’s successful start to conference play.  Fully healthy for the first time in nearly a month, the guard has averaged 6.0 points on 39.6 percent shooting with 3.8 rebounds, 2.9 assists and 1.3 steals in 30.2 minutes per game since the start of Big 12 play.  He played perhaps the best game of his career in the upset win over No. 10 Texas A&M on Jan. 18, as he tossed in eight points on 3-of-4 field goals with a career-best nine rebounds and four assists in 35 minutes of action. He continued his solid in the win over No. 2 Kansas with a team-high five assists to go with zero turnovers with three points and two rebounds.  He posted double-digit scoring for the first time since December at Missouri on Feb. 2 with 14 points on 5-of-9 field goals, including 3-of-3 from 3-point range.

Young, who ranks fifth on the team in scoring (6.3 ppg.) and fourth in rebounding (3.3 rpg.), elevated his play during the key three-game stretch against Oregon, Notre Dame and California.  He averaged 9.3 points on 50 percent shooting, including 41.7 percent from 3-point range, with 4.0 rebounds, 1.7 assists and 1.0 steals in 35.7 minutes.  He is one of just two players (Michael Beasley) to start all 24 games this season.  He also has the longest active game streak on the team with 59 consecutive games played dating back to last season. 

pullen shines at the point
Michael Beasley is not the only true freshman to shine so far this season, as rookie Jacob Pullen has played well in the point guard spot.  The Maywood, Ill., native paces the squad in assists (3.3 apg.) and 3-pointers (28), is second in steals (1.3 spg.), third in scoring (10.2 ppg.) and fifth in minutes played (23.8 mpg.).

Pullen might be playing his best basketball in the last few weeks, capped by his career-high 20-point performance in the win over No. 2 Kansas on Jan. 30.  He went 4-of-9 from the field, including 2-of-5 from 3-point range, to go with a 10-of-10 effort from the free throw line.  During the Wildcats’ last seven games, he is averaging 12.6 points on 45.3 percent shooting, including 41.4 percent from 3-point range, to go with 3.0 assists and 1.0 steals.  He was solid in his first-ever Big 12 game against the Sooners, posting eight points to go with six assists, including the game-winning assist to Michael Beasley with 2.3 seconds remaining.  He continued his impressive play in the win over No. 10 Texas A&M with eight points, four assists and two steals, while he registered double figures for the first time in Big 12 play with 13 against Iowa State.  He scored in double figures for the fifth time in six games with 16 points against Texas Tech on Feb. 13.

Pullen began the season with double-digit scoring in eight of his first 10 games, including tying his career-high with 19 points in back-to-back wins over UCF and Rider at the Old Spice Classic.

kent strong off the bench
Junior Darren Kent has become a key component of the Wildcats’ success of late in the last eight contests, as he has averaged 3.3 points on 47.6 percent shooting, including 40 percent from 3-point range, with 2.6 rebounds and 1.1 assists in 17.1 minutes per game.  He posted a career-high 11 points against Iowa State on Jan. 26 on 4-of-5 field goals, including 3-of-3 from 3-point range.  He also tallied six rebounds to go with five points against Colorado Jan. 23.

what brown can do for you
Yet another talented freshman is starting to emerge from the bench, as Fred Brown posted solid efforts in the last five non-conference games.  He averaged 12.2 points on 57.1 percent shooting in that span with 3.4 rebounds, 1.0 steals and 0.8 assists in 17.2 minutes per game.  He scored 61 of his 71 season point total during this span. 

Brown posted a career-night against Xavier (12/31) with a career-best 25 points on a team season-best 9-of-11 shooting, including 5-of-6 from 3-point range, in a career-high 24 minutes.  The 25 points were nearly triple his previous season-high of nine against Florida A&M (12/17) and Winston-Salem State (12/22).  His 81.8 percent shooting from the field ties for the best by a Wildcat, while his five 3-point field goals were the most since Cartier Martin had five against Oklahoma on March 3, 2007.  After not playing much of the early conference season, he has averaged 12.5 minutes in each of the last six games with a high of 18 minutes against Missouri on Feb. 2.

anderson a monster on boards
Another true freshman making an impact for the Wildcats is Ron Anderson, who ranks first on the team in field goal percentage (55.6) and third in rebounding (4.0 rpg.).  After scoring just 13 points in the previous six games, Anderson had a career day shooting the ball against Wagner (12/29).  He posted a season-high 14 points in the game on 5-of-6 field goals with six rebounds in 22 minutes.    

A late addition to the squad in August, he has already performed well during the season, averaging 7.0 points on 75 percent shooting with 6.0 rebounds in 20.7 minutes at the Old Spice Classic.  He nearly posted his first double-double against UCF on Nov. 23 with 11 points and eight rebounds to go with three assists after turning in six points and nine rebounds against George Mason.  After a slow start to Big 12 play, he has played well against in two of the last three games.  He had five points and four rebounds against Oklahoma State then added seven points and six rebounds against Missouri in just 10 minutes.