Wildcats celebrate Madness

MANHATTAN, Kan. - The Kansas State basketball teams opened their preparations for the 2008-09 season with the third annual "Madness in Manhattan" event on Friday night at Bramlage Coliseum.

The crowd of over 3,500 was entertained with performances from Willie Wildcat, the Classy Cat dance team and the K-State Pep Band, including a remake of the "Thriller" video by Willie and the Classy Cats.  Following the laserlight show, the teams and coaching staffs were introduced individually to go along with highlights of the 2007-08 season.  One of the evening's highlights was the introduction of senior Shalee Lehning carrying the Big 12 Championship trophy, along with a video message from former Wildcat and current Miami Heat forward Michael Beasley.  

The teams played a 15-minute intersquad scrimmage to cap the evening's activities with the White team defeating the Purple team, 46-35.  Sophomore Ron Anderson and redshirt freshman Jamar Samuels led the scoring with 12 points apiece, while senior Darren Kent and junior Luis Colon each added eight points.

Both squads advanced to the NCAA Tournament in 2007-08.  The Wildcat men, who posted a 21-12 overall record and 10-6 mark in Big 12 play, return one starter and seven lettermen for last season's squad.  The Wildcat women return four starters and eight letterwinners from a team that posted a 22-10 overall record and 13-3 mark in Big 12 action. 

The teams will continue practice the next few weeks before opening exhibition play at Bramlage Coliseum.  The women will play Washburn on Sunday, Nov. 2 at 1 p.m. and Emporia State on Friday, Nov. 7 at 7 p.m., while the men play their lone exhibition game against Washburn on Sunday, Nov. 9 at 2 p.m.