'Cats Host Loyola In Opener Friday

Game Information

Kansas State (0-0, 0-0 Big 12)
vs. Loyola Chicago (0-0)

Date: Friday, November 13, 2009
Tipoff: 7:10 p.m. CT
Location: Manhattan, Kan.
Arena: Bramlage Coliseum (12,528)

Television: FOX Sports Kansas City (Ben Boyle, play-by-play; Stan Weber, analyst; Brian McCann, producer)  ChannelDirectory: DirecTV 672, Dish Network 444, AT&T U-verse 750. 
Internet: www.ESPN360.com

Radio: K-State Sports Network ((Wyatt Thompson, play-by-play; Mike Clark, analyst). 
Live Stats: www.k-statesports.com
Local Stations: 101.5-FM (KMKF), Sports Radio 1350-AM (KMAN).  Satellite Radio: n/a

Head Coaches: Kansas State - Frank Martin (Florida International '93) is 43-24 (.642) in his third season.  Loyola Chicago - Jim Whitesell (Luther '82) is 357-270 (.569) in his 23rd season as a head coach, including 79-72 (.523) in his sixth season.  Frank Martin is 0-0 all-time vs. Loyola Chicago, while Jim Whitesell is 0-0 all-time vs. K-State.  

Series: Loyola Chicago leads 4-2 (K-State is 2-0 at home). 

Last time:
Loyola Chicago, 69-64, in Chicago, Ill., on Dec. 19, 1999. 
vs. Horizon League: K-State is 5-5.  

Rankings: K-State is receiving votes in both the AP and USA Today/ESPN Top 25 polls.  Loyola Chicago is not ranked in either poll.

Tickets: $20 (bench and Cat Cushion), $30 (chairbacks) at the Athletics Ticket Office at 800.221.CATS or via www.k-statesports.com

Season Officially Tips Off Friday vs. Loyola Chicago
Kansas State officially tips off the 2009-10 men's basketball season on Friday night, as the Wildcats play host to Horizon League member Loyola Chicago (0-0) at Bramlage Coliseum beginning at 7 p.m.  Third-year head coach Frank Martin returns eight lettermen, including four starters, from a squad that posted a 22-12 overall record, including a 9-7 mark in Big 12 play, and advanced to the second round of the Postseason NIT.  It marks the first time in 15 years that the team has gone to the postseason in three consecutive seasons, while the three 20-win seasons are the first in over 25 years.  The squad has received mention in numerous preseason top 25 polls and did receive votes in both the AP and USA Today/ESPN Coaches Top 25 polls.

Friday's contest kicks off the Ultimate Wildcat Weekend, in which, fans will be able to see four different Wildcat teams in action during a four-day period.  On Saturday, the football team hosts Missouri at 11:30 a.m. for Senior Day at Bill Snyder Family Stadium before the women's basketball team opens its season with a contest against Indiana State at 5 p.m. at Bramlage Coliseum.  The volleyball squad closes the day with a 7 p.m. match against nationally-ranked Iowa State at Ahearn Field House.  On Sunday, the men's basketball team takes center stage for the second time in three days by hosting Western Illinois (0-0) at 3 p.m.  The women's basketball squad concludes the weekend with a game against Arkansas State on Monday night at 7 p.m. 

K-State will look to continue its recent success in season openers with six consecutive wins dating back to the 2003-04 season, including a 96-57 win over Florida A&M in last year's season opener.  The Wildcats are 81-24 (.771) all-time in season openers, including 69-8 (.896) at home.  The last loss in a season opener came to BYU, 73-64, at the Paradise Jam in the Virgin Islands on Nov. 23, 2002.  The team has won 12 straight home season openers dating back to a 74-60 loss to Southern Miss on Nov. 27, 1993, which ranks as the only season-opening loss in the 22-year history of Bramlage Coliseum.  

K-State returns over 80 percent of its scoring in 2009-10, including three of its top-5 scorers in seniors guard Denis Clemente (15.0 ppg.), junior guard Jacob Pullen (13.9 ppg.) and sophomore forward Jamar Samuels (8.3 ppg.).  In addition, the Wildcats return versatile junior forward Dominique Sutton, who averaged 7.5 points and 5.4 rebounds per game last season, and senior center Luis Colon, who along with Pullen started all 34 games to go with 4.4 points and 4.7 rebounds per contest.  This core of veterans will be aided by junior transfer Curtis Kelly, who played two years at Connecticut before sitting out last year, and a five-man freshmen class rated amongst the very best in the nation.  This class includes McDonald's and Parade All-American Wally Judge, prep teammate Rodney McGruder, fellow guards Nick Russell and Martavious Irving and 7-footer Jordan Henriquez-Roberts.    

Projected Starters

Kansas State (0-0)
G - #0 Jacob Pullen (6-0, 200, Jr.)
G - #21 Denis Clemente (6-1, 180, Sr.)
F - #23 Dominique Sutton (6-5, 218, Jr.)
F - #24 Curtis Kelly (6-8, 239, Jr.)
F - #15 Jordan Henriquez-Roberts (7-0, 245, Fr.)

Loyola Chicago (0-0)
G - #10 Courtney Stanley (6-1, 165, So.)
G - #14 Terrance Hill (6-4, 190, Jr.)
G - #23 Geoff McCammon (6-4, 200, Jr.)
F - #24 Ben Averkamp (6-8, 230, Fr.)
F - #32 Andy Polka (6-7, 240, Sr.)

Series Information
This will be the seventh all-time meeting between the two schools with Loyola Chicago holding a 4-2 edge.  The series dates back to 1936 when the Ramblers earned a 44-32 win over the Wildcats in Chicago.  K-State is 2-0 all-time at home in the series, winning 77-67 on Dec. 11, 1964 and 80-52 on Dec. 1, 1998. 

Scouting Kansas State
K-State is coming off an 89-53 win over Pittsburg State in its only exhibition contest.  The Wildcats shot 51.6 percent from the field, including 60.7 percent in the second half, to coast to the win.  The team had a balanced scoring attack with five players in double figures, including a team-high 17 points by junior Jacob Pullen on the strength of five 3-pointers. Sophomore Jamar Samuels had 16 points on 6-of-9 shooting, while senior Denis Clemente added 14 points.  Junior transfer Curtis Kelly posted a double-double with 11 points and 10 rebounds to lead all the newcomers, who combined for 36 points in the win.

ScoutingLoyola Chicago
A member of the Horizon League, Loyola Chicago returns 10 lettermen, including two starters, from a squad that posted a 14-18 overall record, including 6-12 mark in league play, in 2008-09.  The Ramblers must replace four of their top five scorers in 2009-10, who accounted for a combined 39.7 points and 17.2 rebounds per contest.  Senior Andy Polka is top returner in points (7.5 ppg.) and rebounds (5.5 rpg.) after playing in 11 games with nine starts a year ago.

Up Next: Western Illinois
Sunday, Nov. 15 at Bramlage Coliseum in Manhattan, Kan.
3:10 p.m. * K-State Sports Network * FOX Sports Kansas City