K-State Opens Season with Southern Utah Friday

Game Notes in PDF Format

GAME 1
SOUTHERN UTAH (0-0, 0-0 Big Sky)
AT KANSAS STATE (0-0, 0-0 Big 12)
Friday, November 14, 2014 >> Bramlage Coliseum (12,528) >> Manhattan, Kan.


TELEVISION
FSN Kansas City
Ben Boyle (play-by-play)
Stan Weber (analyst)
DirecTV 671  |  AT&T 748
Dish 418/412-08

RADIO
K-State Sports Network
Wyatt Thompson (play-by-play)
Matt Walters (analyst)
Satellite Radio: None

STATS/AUDIO
kstatesports.com
Stats - http://bit.ly/1tMiVwP
Audio - http://bit.ly/1ovOuvF

TICKETS
kstatesports.com/tickets
(800) 221.CATS
$15 (bench), $25 (chairbacks)
Wildcat4Pack: $50 | $10 (12+group)

COACHES
Kansas State: Bruce Weber (Wis.-Milwaukee ’78)
Overall: 360-176 (17th year)
At K-State: 47-21 (3rd year)
Vs. Southern Utah: 0-0

Southern Utah: Nick Robinson (Stanford ’05)
Overall: 13-47 (3rd year)
At Southern Utah: 13-47 (3rd year)
Vs. K-State: 0-0   

PROJECTED STARTING LINEUP
Kansas State (0-0)
G - #1 Jevon Thomas
G - #2 Marcus Foster
G - #14 Justin Edwards
F - #41 Stephen Hurt
F - #42 Thomas Gipson

Southern Utah (0-0)
G - #3 Travon Langston
G - #5 John Marshall
G - #15 Juwan Major
G - #35 A.J. Hess
F - #34 Cal Hanks

INSIDE THE SERIES
Overall: K-State leads 3-0
vs. Big Sky: K-State leads 15-5 (13-3 at home)
In Manhattan: K-State leads 3-0 (last meeting: 1/22/1992)
In Cedar City: n/a
Current Streak: K-State, 3
Last Meeting: K-State won 84-74 in Manhattan (1/22/1992)
Weber vs. Robinson: First meeting

LAST GAME SUMMARY
K-State 68, Washburn 56
Exhibition  *  Bramlage Coliseum  *  November 9, 2014
 Sophomore Marcus Foster led three Wildcats in double figures with 17 points, as K-State outlasted Washburn, 68-56, in its lone exhibition game before 12,391 fans at Bramlage Coliseum on Nov. 9. The Wildcats came out of the gate firing, opening the game on a 12-1 run. Back-and-forth action soon followed with the Washburn pulling to within 14-11 at the 10:45 mark. K-State would respond with a 10-0 run to post a 32-22 lead at the break. The Wildcats continued to hold a sizable lead for much of the second half, as the Ichabods could never get closer than eight points the rest of the way. Joining Foster in double figures were juniors Justin Edwards (14) and Stephen Hurt (12). K-State played the game without four players due to injury, including senior Nino Williams, junior D.J. Johnson, sophomore Wesley Iwundu and freshman Malek Harris. 

GAME 1 - QUICK HITTERS
•    Kansas State officially tips off the 111th season of men’s basketball on Friday night, as the Wildcats play host to Southern Utah (0-0) in the second game of a doubleheader at Bramlage Coliseum at 8 p.m.
•    The women’s basketball team opens the year with SIU-Edwardsville (0-0) at 5:30 p.m. Men’s ticket holder may present their SUU ticket for early admission and sit in general admission seating for the women’s contest.
•    Friday’s opener is the first two straight for the Wildcats at home to start the season, including Monday’s tilt with UMKC. The squad will play at Long Beach State on Friday, Nov. 21 before heading to the Maui Invitational.
•    K-State is 85-25 (.773) all-time in season openers dating back to the first season in 1903, including a 73-9 (.890) mark at home.
•    The Wildcats saw their 10-game winning streak in openers snapped last season, as Northern Colorado held off a late rally to post a 60-58 win on Nov. 8, 2013. It was the first season-opening loss since a 73-64 setback to BYU at the Paradise Jam in the U.S. Virgin Islands on Nov. 23, 2002.
•    The UNC loss also halted a 19-game winning streak in home openers, which dated to a 74-60 defeat to Southern Miss on Nov. 27, 1993. Overall, K-State is 20-2 (.909) all-time in openers at Bramlage Coliseum.
•    In addition, the UNC loss snapped a 47-game winning streak against non-conference opponents at Bramlage Coliseum and was the first since an 80-77 overtime loss to No. 17 Oregon on Nov. 29, 2007.
•    K-State has a 65-3 record at home in non-conference play dating back to 2006-07, including a 63-2 mark during the regular season. The squad has won 54 of its last 55 non-conference home games.
•    Bruce Weber is 14-2 (.875) in his 16-year head coaching career in openers (Southern Illinois and Illinois), including a 14-1 mark in home openers. Before last seson, his last setback in an opener came in his first season at SIU (1998-99), when the Salukis lost 65-62 at Murray State.
•    Weber is 32-3 (.914) at Bramlage Coliseum since taking over as head coach at K-State with losses to No. 3 Kansas (2012), Northern Colorado (2013) and Baylor (2013). Those 3 losses came by a total of 8 points.
•    K-State was picked fourth in Big 12 Preseason Poll with 53 points.
•    The Wildcats return 9 lettermen in 2014-15, including starters Marcus Foster, Thomas Gipson and Wesley Iwundu, from a team that posted a 20-13 overall record and 10-8 mark in league play en route to their school-record fifth consecutive trip to the NCAA Tournament.

RECAPPING THE EXHIBITION SEASON
•    Kansas State won its lone exhibition game of the 2014-15 season with a 68-56 win over Division II Washburn.
•    K-State is 56-18 (.756) all-time in exhibition play dating back to 1964, including a 38-9 (.804) mark at Bramlage Coliseum.
•    The Wildcats have now won 16 consecutive exhibition games dating back to 2004.
•    K-State is 4-0 in exhibition play under head coach Bruce Weber.
•    K-State is now 5-0 vs. Washburn in exhibition play with wins in 2006, 2008, 2010, 2012 and 2014.
•    Sophomore Marcus Foster led three Wildcats in double figures with 17 points, while juniors Justin Edwards (14) and Stephen Hurt (12) also scored in double figures.
•    The Wildcats came out the gate firing, opening the game on a 12-1 run. Foster and Nigel Johnson combined for three 3-pointers, while senior Thomas Gipson and Edwards pitched in a free throw and layup, respectively. Jevon Thomas, who racked up the Wildcats’ first five assists of the game, would go onto finish with a game-high eight dimes on the afternoon. 
•    K-State connected on 44.1 percent (26-of-59) from the field, including 32.1 percent (9-of-28) from 3-point range.
•    The Wildcats scored 28 points off of 19 Washburn turnovers.
•    In addition to Edwards and Hurt, three other players made their first appearances in a Wildcat uniform, including sophomore Brandon Bolden and freshmen Tre Harris and Mason Schoen.
•    K-State played Sunday’s exhibition without four players due to injury, including senior Nino Williams, junior D.J. Johnson, sophomore Wesley Iwundu and freshman Malek Harris.

THE OPPONENT: SOUTHERN UTAH (0-0)
•    Southern Utah returns eight lettermen, including all five starters, from a team that posted a 2-27 overall record and an 11th-place finish in the Big Sky with a 1-19 mark. The team snapped 24-game losing streak with a 77-71 win over North Dakota in the first round of the Big Sky Tournament before losing to Northern Colorado, 77-52.
•    The Thunderbirds averaged 59 points on 40.1 percent shooting, including 32.3 percent from 3-point range, with 28.5 rebounds, 10.8 assists, 4.4 steals and 3.2 blocks per game. The team allowed 74.9 points per game on 47.1 percent shooting.
•    Southern Utah returns 6 of its top 7 scorers from 2013-14, including each of its top 3, along with its top 2 rebounders.
•    The team returns its top scorer (Trey Kennedy - 9.5 ppg.) and its top rebounder (Casey Oliverson - 5.3 rpg.).
•    Head coach Nick Robinson has a 13-47 overall record in his third season at the helm. He came to Southern Utah after serving as assistant coach at LSU for current TCU head coach Trent Johnson. A 2005 graduate of Stanford, he is a native of Liberty, Mo.

BREAKING DOWN THE SERIES
•    Friday’s contest will mark the fourth meeting between K-State and Southern Utah on the hardwood and the first since 1992.
•    The Wildcats have won all three previous meetings at home, including an 84-75 win in Jan. 16, 1989, a 102-56 win on Jan. 9, 1990 and an 84-74 win on Jan. 22, 1992.
•    K-State is 15-5 all-time against Big Sky Conference schools, including a 13-3 mark at home. It marks the second straight season that the Wildcats have opened the season against a Big Sky team after falling to Northern Colorado, 60-58, in 2013.

NON-CONFERENCE SUCCESS
•    K-State has a 65-3 record at home in non-conference play dating back to 2006-07, including a 63-2 mark during the regular season. The squad has won 54 of its last 55 non-conference home games.
•    K-State posted a 10-3 record in non-conference play in 2013-14, tallying 8 consecutive wins and 7 straight wins at home.
•    K-State totaled 10 wins in non-conference play for the eighth consecutive season in 2013-14 with a composite 81-18 record.
•    K-State was a stellar 13-1 in non-conference games in 2009-10, while the squad won 12 games each in 2008-09 and 2010-11, 11 games each in 2006-07, 2011-12 and 2012-13 and 10 in 2007-08 and 2013-14.

GETTING DEFENSIVE
•    K-State has put up some impressive defensive numbers under head coach Bruce Weber, leading the Big 12 in scoring defense each of the past two seasons (60.4 ppg. in 2012-13 and 65.4 ppg. in 2013-14).
•    31 opponents have been held to 60 points or less in Weber’s two seasons as head coach with the Wildcats boasting a 28-3 mark in those contests (only losses to Kansas in 2012 and Northern Colorado and Kentucky in 2013).
•    15 Big 12 opponents have been held to 60 points or less (13 in regular-season Big 12 play) with the Wildcats posting a 14-1 record in those matchups, including a 12-1 mark in Big 12 play (only loss to Kansas in 2012).

‘CATS PICKED 4TH IN BIG 12 PRESEASON POLL
•    Kansas State was selected to finish fourth in the preseason 2014-15 Big 12 Conference coaches’ poll released by the league office on Oct. 9. The Wildcats received 53 points to earn the nod in fourth place, just two points ahead of fifth-place Iowa State (51). The fourth-place prediction was the highest since the squad was selected as the preseason favorite in 2010-11.
•    K-State was also chosen fourth in the preseason polls of 2007-08 and 2009-10.
•    Kansas was picked as the conference favorite with 78 points and six first-place votes by the league coaches. Texas was a close second with 74 points and three first-place votes, while Oklahoma voted third with 67 points and the final first-place vote.

FOSTER NAMED TO PRESEASON ALL-BIG 12 TEAM
•    Sophomore Marcus Foster was selected to the Preseason All-Big 12 Team released by the conference office on Oct. 2.
•    Foster is the first Wildcat named to the Preseason All-Big 12 Team since Rodney McGruder was selected to the squad in 2012. It marks just the fifth time that a Wildcat men’s basketball player has been named to the preseason team, joining Manny Dies in 1998-99, Jacob Pullen and Curtis Kelly in 2010-11 and McGruder in 2012.
•    The honor marks the fourth of the preseason for Foster, as he was named to the Preseason All-Big 12 Team by a number of publications, including Athlon, Blue Ribbon Yearbook and The Sporting News.
•    Foster was joined on the 5-man preseason team by unanimous choices Perry Ellis (Kansas) and Juwan Staten (West Virginia), along with Buddy Hield (Oklahoma) and Georges Niang (Iowa State).
•    Staten was voted as the Big 12 Preseason Player of the Year and Bryce Dejean-Jones (Iowa State) was the Preseason Newcomer of the Year, while Cliff Alexander (Kansas) and Myles Turner (Texas) were selected as the Preseason Freshmen of the Year.

UP NEXT: UMKC (0-0)
Monday, Nov. 17 >> Bramlage Coliseum (12,528) >> Manhattan, Kan.  >> 7 p.m. CT  >> FSN Midwest