No. 25 K-State continues road play at Baylor

game information
24/25 kansas state (18-7, 8-3 Big 12)
vs. baylor (17-8, 5-6 Big 12)

Saturday, February 23, 2008
Tipoff: 7:06 p.m. CT
Location: Waco, Texas
Arena: Ferrell Center (1988)
Capacity: 10,284

Series: K-State leads 10-8
(Baylor leads 4-2 at home)

Television: FSN Midwest/ESPN Full Court   
Ben Boyle (play-by-play)
Stan Weber (analyst)
Doug Stanton (producer)

Satellite Channels: DirecTV 648; Dish Network 450
Satellite Coordinates: AMC 16, Transponder 14 Slot B (KU Band)

Radio: K-State Sports Network; Powercat Passport Internet Audio;  Yahoo! Internet Radio, Sirius Satellite 161
Wyatt Thompson (play-by-play)
Matt Walters (analyst)

Tickets: Available for $15 (upper bench) at 254.710.1000

kansas state wildcats
Record: 18-7 (8-3 Big 12)
Ranking (AP/Coaches): 24/25
Coach: Frank Martin
Alma Mater: Florida International, 93
Career Record: 18-7/1
School Record: 18-7/1
vs. Baylor: First meeting
06-07 Record: 23-12 (10-6 Big 12)
Last game: Feb. 20, 2008
lost at Nebraska, 71-64
SID: Tom Gilbert

baylor bears
Record: 17-8 (5-6 Big 12)
Ranking (AP/Coaches): nr/nr
Coach: Scott Drew
Alma Mater: Butler 93
Career Record: 73-88/6
School Record: 53-77/5
vs. Kansas State: 1-3
06-07 Record: 15-16 (4-12 Big 12)
Last game: Feb. 19, 2008
lost at Oklahoma, 92-91, in OT
SID: Heath Nielsen

game preview
No. 24/25 Kansas State (18-7, 8-3 Big 12) continues its week-long road trip on Saturday, as the Wildcats travel to Waco, Texas, to face Baylor (17-8, 5-6 Big 12) at the Ferrell Center at 7 p.m. CT.  The team will look to regain their momentum on the road, as they have dropped  contests at Missouri (77-74), Texas Tech (84-75) and Nebraska (71-64) since starting league play with victories at Oklahoma (84-82) and Colorado (72-56).  The game continues a crucial stretch where the Wildcats will play three of their last five games on the road.

Wednesday’s contest will be televised regionally on FSN Midwest (DirecTV 648, Dish Network 450) as well as nationally on the ESPN Full Court package with Ben Boyle (play-by-play) and Stan Weber (analyst) calling the action.  The department announced on Jan. 24 that the remaining games on Fox Sports Midwest will now be available on ESPN Full Court, allowing more fans across the country to enjoy these games.  It will be the 10th and final appearance on the network this season and one of a school-record 29 televised contests.  The team is 18-1 over the past two seasons on FSN Midwest.    

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 Matt Walters (analyst) behind the mikes.  Fans can also listen to the game on Sirius Satellite 161.

K-State continued its recent struggles on the road on Wednesday, as the Wildcats dropped a 71-64 decision to Nebraska at the Devaney Sports Center.  After trailing for much of the contest, the team rallied to within 65-64 on a 3-pointer by senior guard Blake Young with 4:52 remaining in the contest.   However, the squad would not score the rest of the contest, missing their last eight field goals, in falling to 2-3 on the road this season.  The 64 points were the second-fewest scored this season by the Wildcats and the least since scoring 59 against Notre Dame at the Jimmy Classic on Dec. 4.  The team also set season-lows for free throws (6), free throws attempted (7) and defensive rebounds (17).  The defense also suffered several lapses, as the Cornhuskers shot 51.9 percent from the field, including 56.5 percent in the second half, and out-rebounded the Wildcats, 33-29.

Despite the loss, K-State remains in the Big 12 race, as the team now trails No. 4 Kansas (24-2, 9-2 Big 12) and No. 7 Texas (22-4, 9-2 Big 12) by a full game for first place.  However, the Wildcats still control their own destiny with games against both squads next week.

Freshman Michael Beasley led the scoring attack for the 20th time this season with a team-high 17 points and 10 rebounds.  In gaining his nation’s leading 22nd double-double of the season, Beasley tied Carmelo Anthony’s (22; 2002-03) all-time Division I freshman mark for double-doubles.  Fellow rookie Jacob Pullen posted 15 points and a team-high seven assists, while freshman Bill Walker and Blake Young added 12 and 10 points, respectively.

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 18-7 start to the season is the best by a Wildcat squad in 26 seasons since the 1987-88 squad started 19-6.  The 8-3 start to league play is the best in the Big 12 era and the best since the 1987-88 team also began Big Eight play with an 8-3 mark.

Kansas State is averaging 80.1 points on 44.7 percent shooting with 42.4 rebounds, 16.6 assists, 8.0 steals and 3.8 blocks per game, while holding their foes to 67.1 points on 40.8 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 margin (11th), scoring (18th) and assists (23rd).  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 25.4 points per game.  Beasley, who paces the nation in rebounding at 12.5 per game, is shooting 54.5 percent from the field to go with 1.6 blocks, 1.4 steals and 1.3 assists in 30.8 minutes per game.  He leads the squad in 15 categories, including scoring, double-doubles (22), 20-point games (19), field goals (230), free throws (147), 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 overall games and is first in scoring and second in
rebounding in league-only games.  He is tied with Carmelo Anthony for the most double-doubles by freshman in Division I history.

Rookie Bill Walker ranks second to Beasley in numerous categories, including scoring (16.2 ppg.), rebounding (6.6 rpg.), field goals (132), field goal attempts (283), blocks (16), double-digit scoring (20) and double-doubles (three).  Since being moved back to the interior 17 games ago, Walker is averaging 17.9 points on 48.9 percent shooting, including 39.1 percent from 3-point range, with 6.7 rebounds in 26.2 minutes per game.  He has now scored in double figures in 24 of 29 career games, including 20 of 23 games this season.

The backcourt of Jacob Pullen, Clent Stewart and Blake Young has also continued to play well for the Wildcats.  Pullen, who has started four of the last five games, is first on the team in assists (3.4 apg.) and 3-point field goals (31) and third in scoring (10.4 ppg.).  During the last eight games, Pullen has averaged 12.9 points on 45.9 percent shooting (34-of-74), including 42.9 percent shooting (15-of-35), with 3.5 assists and 1.0 steals in 26.4 minutes per game. 

The team’s most experienced player with 113 appearances and 87 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 60 games, ranks fourth in rebounding (3.2 rpg.) and fifth in scoring (6.5 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 15 games, which includes a 10-game winning streak from Dec. 28 to Feb. 2, and is now tied for first place in the Big 12 with an 18-7 overall record and a 10-2 mark in league play.  The 24th-ranked men are off to their best start since the 1987-88 season and their best start since the inception of the Big 12.  Both teams continue to be ranked in The Associated Press 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 18-7 start to his career is now the best start ever by a first-year head coach, while his 8-3 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 17 games.  The squad is averaging 81.6 points on 45.8 percent shooting (484-of-1057), including 37.1 percent from 3-point range (125-of-337), 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 17 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 17 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 25 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 41.5 points on 48.3 percent shooting (including 33.2 percent from 3-point range) in the second half this season.  In comparison, the Wildcats are averaging 37.9 points on 41.4 percent shooting (including 33.3 percent from 3-point range) in the first half this season.  However, in the last six games, this trend has turned with the squad averaging 39.7 points on 47.5 percent shooting in the first half in comparison to 38.5 points in the second half on 42.1 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 six 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 25 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 baylor (17-8)
Baylor (17-8, 5-6 Big 12) dropped its fourth  consecutive games on Wednesday, as the Bears lost a heartbreaker in overtime at Oklahoma, 92-91.  In a back-and-forth affair, in which the teams combined for 20 3-point field goals, Baylor rallied from an 11-point first-half deficit to force the extra period.  In overtime, the Bears ran out to as much as five-point lead, however, the Sooners rallied with four 3-pointers, including one by Tony Crocker on a 4-point play, to snatch the victory.  The loss was the fourth straight by 10 points or less for the squad, while it was the sixth in seven games since their marathon 116-110 five-overtime win over nationally-ranked Texas A&M on Jan. 23.  Junior guard Curtis Jerrells led four players in double figures against Oklahoma with a game-tying 29 points on 10-of-18 shooting, while junior forward Kevin Rogers and sophomore guard Tweety Carter added 18 and 17 points, respectively. 

Baylor is averaging 81.4 points on 46 percent shooting, including 38 percent from 3-point range, with 37.6 rebounds, 12.3 assists, 7.8 steals and 4.8 blocks per game.  The Bears pace the Big 12 in 3-point field goals per game (8.72) and second in scoring.  The team is
holding foes to 73.6 points per game on 42.4 percent shooting.   

A balanced scoring squad, the team has six players averaging nine or more points led by Curtis Jerrell’s 15.4-point per game average.  He is one of five players who have connected on 34 or more 3-pointers on the season.  A preseason All-Big 12 selection, Jerrells is shooting 44.6 percent from the field to go with 3.5 assists and 1.4 steals per game.  Freshman LaceDarius Dunn averages 13.0 points on a team-best 58 3-pointers, while Kevin Rogers and junior Henry Dugat add 12.2 and 11.9 points per game, respectively.  Rogers also averages a team-best 8.4 rebounds per game.  Senior Aaron Bruces averages 9.6 points.

The team is led by head coach Scott Drew, who has a 73-88 record in six years overall as a head coach and a 53-77 mark in his fifth season at Baylor.  The son of longtime Valparaiso coach Homer Drew has steadily built the Bears up from eight wins to their current total of 17, which is the highest by a Baylor team since the 2000-01 season.  He led Valparaiso to a 20-11 record and a first-place finish in the Mid-Continent Conference in 2002-03 before taking his current position. 

series vs. baylor
This will be the 19th all-time meeting between Kansas State and Baylor in a series that dates back to 1948.  The Wildcats lead the all-time series, 10-8, however, the Bears own a 4-2 advantage in games played in Waco.  Baylor holds a narrow 7-5 edge in the series since the inception of the Big 12, including a 4-1 record in that span at home.  The teams have split the eight meetings overall, including the last two in Waco.  The Wildcats earned a 69-60 come-from-behind win on Jan. 17, 2007 at home, while the Bears won the last game played in Waco, 72-70, in overtime on Feb. 1, 2006. 

This will be the first meeting between Frank Martin and Scott Drew on the hardwood.  Drew has a 1-3 record against K-State.       

last meeting vs. baylor
Junior David Hoskins and senior Lance Harris led a second-half comeback and K-State erased an 11-point deficit to beat Baylor, 69-60, in the last meeting between the two squads on Jan. 17, 2007.  The Wildcats, after shooting 55 percent in the first half, missed their first 15 shots of the second half and fell behind 51-40.  However, the team rallied to can six of their next seven to take the lead for good, 59-58, on a 3-pointer from senior Cartier Martin with 5:07 left.  Harris led four players in double figures with 18 points, while Martin and Hoskins added 15 and 13 points, respectively.  Clent Stewart had 12 points.    
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 both rank the top 5 in scoring in conference-only games. 

Beasley paces the league in four categories - scoring (25.4 ppg.), rebounding (12.5 rpg.), offensive rebounds (4.36 rpg.) and defensive rebounds (8.16 rpg.) - and is the top-15 in four others - blocked shots (third - 1.60 bpg.), field goal percentage (fourth - 54.5), steals (12th - 1.40) and free throw percentage (12th - 73.9).  He owns the most double-doubles (22) and the most 30-point games (nine).

Walker ranks fifth in the Big 12 in scoring (16.2 ppg.) and ninth (6.6 rpg.) in rebounding.  He places among the top-15 in three categories, including sixth in offensive rebounds (2.83 rpg.), eighth in field goal percentage (46.6) and 14th in free throw percentage (71.3).

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 41.6 points per game.  The duo trails VMI’s Reggie Williams (27.1 ppg.) and Chavis Holmes (17.3 ppg.), Niagara’s Charron Fisher (27.9 ppg.) and Tyrone Lewis (16.1 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 41.6 points per game average is also on track to among the best in Big 12 history, just three-hundredths of point behind 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 44.0 points per game in league-only games and rank in the top-5 in the Big 12 in scoring in these games (Beasley - 26.7 ppg. and Walker - 17.3 ppg.).

top scoring tandems in division I (all classes)
44.2, Reggier Williams (27.1) & Chavis Holmes (17.3), VMI
44.0, Charron Fisher (27.9) & Tyrone Lewis (16.1), Niagara
42.2, Lester Hudson (25.8) & Marquis Weddle (16.4), UT-Martin
41.6, Michael Beasley (25.4) & Bill Walker (16.2), K-State
40.2, Ben Woodside (21.1) & Brett Winkelman (19.1), NDSU

top scoring tandems in division I (freshmen)
41.6, Michael Beasley (25.4) & Bill Walker (16.2), K-State
32.8, Donte Greene (17.6) & Jonny Flynn (15.2), Syracuse
32.4, O.J. Mayo (20.0) & Davon Jefferson (12.4), USC

top scoring tandems in big 12 history
41.9, Cory Carr (23.1) & Tony Battie (18.8), Texas Tech (1996-97)
41.6, Michael Beasley (25.4) & Bill Walker (16.2), K-State
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 (1194) and blocks (55) and over 50 percent of the rebounds (551), steals (111) and assists (186). 

Most of these have come from phenom Michael Beasley, who owns over 30 percent of the team’s points (634) and rebounds (313).  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 (1567) and blocks (71) and over 65 percent of the rebounds (694) and steals (133).

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.  

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 25.4 points and 12.5 rebounds per game through 25 games with 22 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 22 double-doubles tie Syracuse’s Carmelo Anthony, who had 22 (including 18 in regular season) in 2002-03, for the most-ever by a Division I freshman.  Remarkably, Boozer and Parr averaged a double-double in three straight 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 Boozer (25.6 ppg. in 1958-59) and 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 (16.2 ppg.) and rebounding (6.6 rpg.), while he is third in steals (1.0 spg.) and fourth in free throw percentage (71.3).  He has now scored in double figures in 24 of his 29 career games, including 20 of 23 games this season.  Walker might be playing the finest basketball of his Wildcat career in the team’s last 17 games.  In gaining the start in each of these contests, he is averaging 17.9 points on 48.9 percent shooting (108-of-221), including 39.1 percent shooting (25-of-64) from 3-point range, with 6.7 rebounds, 2.1 assists and 0.8 steals in 26.2 minutes per game.  He has connected on 71.9 percent (64-of-89) from the free throw line during his current playing streak.

After battling through a variety injuries to start the season, Walker has played in 19 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 17.3 points on 49.3 percent shooting, including 36.4 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 367 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 3,059, just 32 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 87th career start against Nebraska.  He also broke into the top-10 list for career games played with his 113th vs. the Huskers.

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 6.4 points on 41.7 percent shooting with 3.7 rebounds, 2.9 assists and 1.4 steals in 30.7
 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 (6.5 ppg.) and fourth in rebounding (3.2 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 25 games this season.  He also has the longest active game streak on the team with 60 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 (3.4 apg.) and 3-pointers (31), is second in steals (1.2 spg.), third in scoring (10.4 ppg.) and fifth in minutes played (24.2 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 eight games, he is averaging 12.9 points on 45.9 percent shooting, including 42.9 percent from 3-point range, to go with 3.5 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 sixth time in eight games with 15 points against Nebraska.

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 solid off the bench
Junior Darren Kent has become a key component of the Wildcats’ success of late in the last nine contests, as he has averaged 2.9 points on 45.5 percent shooting, including 40 percent from 3-point range, with 2.3 rebounds and 1.0 assists in 15.4 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 also scored 61 of his 71 season point total during this span.  He 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 Big 12 season, he has averaged 10.7 minutes in each of the last seven 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 (55.4) and third in rebounding (3.9 rpg.).  After scoring just 13 points in the previous six games, he had a career day shooting the ball against Wagner (12/29).  Anderson 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 three of the last four games.  He had five points and four rebounds against Oklahoma State then added seven points and six rebounds against Missouri in just 10 minutes.