K-State, Xavier to clash in Cincinnati Monday

game information
kansas state vs. xavier

Monday, December 31, 2007
Tipoff: 6:02 p.m. CT
Location: Cincinnati, Ohio
Arena: U.S. Bank Arena (1975)
Capacity: 16,202

Series: Xavier leads 3-2 (2-0 in Cincinnati, Ohio; 1-0 at U.S. Bank Arena)

Television: ESPNU  
Jim Barbar (play-by-play)
Mark Adams (analyst)
Todd Kulis (producer)
Satellite Coordinates: Galaxy 11/19 K Lower

Radio: K-State Sports Network;
Powercat Passport Internet Audio;   
Yahoo! Internet Radio,
Sirius Satellite 126
Wyatt Thompson (play-by-play)
Stan Weber (analyst)

Tickets: Available through U.S. Bank Arena (513.562.4949) and via Ticketmaster.  Floor seating is $55 and 100/200 level seating is $32.

kansas state wildcats
Record: 9-3 (0-0 Big 12)
Ranking (AP/Coaches): nr/nr
Coach: Frank Martin
Alma Mater: Florida International, 93
Career Record: 9-3/1
School Record: 9-3/1
vs. Xavier: First meeting
06-07 Record: 23-12 (10-6 Big 12)
Last game: Dec. 29, 2007
defeated Wagner, 101-59
SID: Tom Gilbert
Website: www.k-statesports.com

xavier musketeers
Record: 9-3 (0-0 Atlantic 10)
Ranking (AP/Coaches): nr/nr
Coach: Sean Miller
Alma Mater: Pittsburgh, 92
Career Record: 72-35/4
School Record: 72-35/4
vs. Kansas State: 1-0
06-07 Record: 25-9 (13-3 A-10)
Last game: Dec. 28, 2007
defeated Delaware State, 65-33
SID: Tom Eiser
Website: www.GoXavier.com

game preview
Riding a season-best four-game winning streak, Kansas State (9-3) heads to Cincinnati, Ohio, for a pivotal match-up with Xavier (9-3) at U.S. Bank Arena on Monday at 6 p.m. CT.  It will be the team’s second game in a three-day period following Saturday’s impressive 101-59 win over Wagner at Bramlage Coliseum.

The Wildcats set season-highs in eight team categories, including points (101), field goals (36), assists (22) and steals, in recording their most lopsided victory of the season against Wagner.  The team, which posted their highest point total since also scoring 101 against Tennessee Tech on Nov. 18, 2006, has scored 90 or more points in back-to-back games for the first time since December 1997.  The squad has also excelled on the defensive end of late, holding three straight opponents to 60 points or less for the first time this season. 

Monday’s contest will be televised nationally on ESPNU with Jim Barbar (play-by-play) and Mark Adams (analyst) calling the action. 
It will be the sixth of a school-record 13 appearances on national television for the Wildcats, including the third on ESPNU.  The Wildcats are 2-0 on ESPNU this season, beating UCF (73-71) and Rider (82-69) on Nov. 22 and 23 on the network at the Old Spice Classic.  

The game will also be broadcast on the 31-station K-State Sports Network (Powercat Passport Internet Audio; Yahoo! Internet Radio; Sirius Satellite 126) with Wyatt Thompson (play-by-play) and Stan Weber (analyst) calling the action.

the book on kansas state
Kansas State continued their impressive play against a quality Wagner foe on Saturday, as the Wildcats broke the 100-point barrier for the first time this season in its 101-59 win over the Seahawks.  In all, the team set season-highs in eight categories, including points (101), field goals (36), field goal attempts (74), defensive rebounds (34), assists (22), steals (12), points in a half (55) and field goal percentage in a half (57.5), while holding Wagner to opponent lows in four categories, including field goal percentage (31.1), 3-point field goals (5), 3-point field goal percentage (21.7) and field goal percentage in a half (22.9).

K-State was remarkably diverse in breaking the 100-point barrier, as five players scored in double figures led by the freshman duo of Bill Walker and Michael Beasley.  Walker tallied his third career double-double with a game-high 27 points and 10 rebounds in a mere 25 minutes, while Beasley collected his 12th consecutive double-double to start his career with 21 points and 10 rebounds.  It marked just the second time this season that two players posted 20 or more points in the same game and the first time five players were in double figures since a win over Missouri on Jan. 13, 2007.  Freshman Ron Anderson chipped in a season-high 14 points, while senior Clent Stewart and freshman Dominique Sutton added 12 and 10 points, respectively. 

After earning their first preseason ranking since 1975, Kansas State dropped out of The Associated Press Top 25 on Dec. 3 after a four-week run.  The four-week run in the poll was the longest by the team since the 1981-82 squad also spent four consecutive weeks in the poll from Jan. 20 to Feb. 20, 1982.  

The team is averaging 81.2 points on 43.6 percent shooting with 45.6 rebounds, 17.1 assists, 8.3 steals and 4.3 blocks per game, while holding their foes to 67.5 points on 39.5 percent shooting.  Three players are averaging in double figures led by Michael Beasley, who ranks sixth nationally in scoring at 25.8 points per game.

Beasley, who paces the nation in rebounding at 13.7 per game, is shooting a team-high 55.8 percent from the field, including 38.7
percent from 3-point range to go with 2.0 blocks, 1.5 assists and 1.2 steals in 30.1 minutes per game.  He has registered a double-double in every game this season and has posted 30 or more points in five of 12 games.  Beasley leads the team in 11 categories, including scoring, field goals (116), free throws (66), rebounds, blocks and minutes.  His 12 consecutive double-doubles now tie Jack Parr (1957) and Willie Murrell (1963) for ninth place for double-doubles in a single-season.

His 40 points against Winston-Salem on Dec. 22 were the most by a Wildcat since Askia Jones tallied a school-record 62 points against Fresno State in the second round of the Postseason NIT on March 24, 1994.  He is the ninth Wildcat in school history to record a 40-point game, while his 40-point effort ties Mike Evans (40 vs. Colorado, 1/15/77) for the eighth-highest scoring total in a single game.  In addition, the 40 points are the most-ever by a freshman, surpassing the 39 scored by Norris Coleman against Colorado on Jan. 18, 1986.

Beasley is one of four players averaging in double figures for the Wildcats, including fellow freshmen Bill Walker (14.0 ppg.), Jacob Pullen (10.4 ppg.) and Dominique Sutton (10.0 ppg.) 

Walker, who is averaging 18.0 points and 8.0 rebounds in the last four games, is second in scoring and rebounding (6.9 rpg.) and has now scored in double figures in 11 of 16 career games, including seven of 10 games this season.  Pullen, who tied his career-high with 19 in back-to-back wins against UCF and Rider at the Old Spice Classic, is first in assists (3.3 apg.) and steals (1.5 spg.) and is third in scoring.  He has scored in double figures in eight games.  Sutton, who joined on the team just five days ago, scored 10 points on 4-of-4 shooting with four rebounds and two rebounds in just 10 minutes against Wagner.

ticket information
Tickets are available through Ticketmaster.com, by calling at 513.562.4949 or in person at U.S. Bank Arena Box Office.  Floor
seating is available for $55 and 100 and 200 level seating is $32.

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 four games.  The squad is averaging 90.0 points on 45.6 percent shooting (118-of-259), including 32.9 percent from 3-point range (25-of-76), during that span after averaging 76.9 points on 42.6 percent shooting, including 25.9 from beyond the arc, in the first eight contests.  Most notably, the team is taken better advantage of its opportunites from the free throw line, converting on 72.3 percent (99-of-137) in the last four games compared to just 63.6 percent (119-of-187) in first eight. 

The Wildcats have scored 80 or more points in four consecutive games for the first time since doing it in four straight games in early December 2006.  Prior to last season, the team had scored 80 or more points in three consecutive games just three times prior to the 1990-91 season (3, 1990-91; 3, 1991-92; 3, 2004-05).  The team has recorded 90 or more points in back-to-back games for the first time in over 10 years since scoring 101 against Coastal Carolina on Dec. 6 and 90 at Wichita State on Dec. 10, 1997.

Despite its struggles in the early season, K-State has scored at least 75 points in 10 of its 12 games this season.  The 10 games of at least 75 points equals the entire total from the 2006-07 season (10) and either equals or surpasses the total from the 1999-2000 (five), 2000-01 (four), 2001-02 (five), 2002-03 (eight), 2003-04 (eight), 2004-05 (nine) and 2005-06 (six) seasons.  The last time the school had more than 10 games of 75 or more points was the 1998-99 season, which produced 11 such contests.

the book on xavier (9-3)
In a season that has included tests against the likes of George Mason, Oregon, Notre Dame and California, Kansas State faces yet another strong and talented team in Xavier (9-3).  The Musketeers, who have played a daunting schedule with the likes of Indiana, Creighton, Cincinnati and Tennessee, broke their two-game losing streak with a 65-33 win over Delaware State on Dec. 28.  The balanced squad shot 49 percent from the field, including 56 percent in the first half, while holding the Hornets to just 33 points on 26.1 percent shooting.

Xavier is averaging 77.0 points on 46.8 percent shooting, including 34.9 percent from 3-point range, with 39.1 rebounds, 15.4 assists, 6.2 steals and 3.7 blocks per game.  The team is holding opponents to 60.9 points per game on 39.9 percent shooting from the field.  One of the most balanced scoring squads in the nation, the Musketeers have five players averaging in double figures, including four averaging
between 11.2 and 11.8 points.  Senior guard Drew Lavender leads the attack with 11.8 points to go with team-bests in assists (4.9 apg.) and steals (1.7 spg.) in 31.3 minutes per game.  Derrick Brown is tops in rebounding at 6.4 per contest to go with 11.6 points per game. 

Xavier returns seven lettermen, including two starters, from a team that compiled a 25-9 overall record and captured the regular-season Atlantic 10 titles and a trip to the NCAA Tournament, where they lost in the second round to eventual national runner-up Ohio State.  The team ran off seven straight wins this season, including a thrashing of ranked Indiana, 80-65, on Nov. 24, before dropping back-to-back games against Arizona State and nationally-ranked Tennessee.

The team is led by head coach Sean Miller, who has a 72-35 record in three seasons since replacing Thad Matta.  Miller has led the squad to back-to-back NCAA Tournament appearances, the 2006 Atlantic 10 Conference Tournament title and the 2007 Atlantic 10 regular season title.  Miller is 1-0 all-time against Kansas State, as he guided Xavier to a 76-66 win in last year’s meeting at U.S. Bank Arena.  

series vs. xavier
This will mark the sixth all-time meeting between Kansas State and Xavier on the hardwood.  The Musketeers hold a 3-2 advantage in the series, including a 2-0 mark in the city of Cincinnati.  The team has won three of the last four meetings, including last year’s victory at the U.S. Bank Arena.  The series began in 1961 with the Wildcats posting a 75-67 win at the Kentucky Invitational.  The teams didn’t meet again for nearly 30 years before playing in the 1990 NCAA Tournament, as Xavier earned an 87-79 before a school-record crowd of 39,417 at the Hoosier Dome in Indianapolis, Ind.  The teams played a home-and-home series in 1995 and 1996 with each winning on their home court.

Last season, Xavier shot 55.6 percent from the field, including 60.0 percent in the second half, to earn a 76-66 win over Kansas State in Bob Huggins’ return to Cincinnati.  The Musketeers had three players in double figures led by Stanley Burrell’s 23 points. 

wagner postgame notes
K-State is now 1-0 all-time against Wagner... The Wildcats have an 8-3 record all-time against members of the Northeast Conference.

The 101 points were the most scored this season... It marked the third time they have scored 90 or more this season and second
consecutive time... The last time the Wildcats scored 90 or more in consecutive games was 1997... The 101 points were the most since Nov. 18, 2006, when the Wildcats dropped 101 on Tennessee Tech... It was the Wildcats’ 35th 100-point game in its history.

Kansas State set season-highs in eight categories, including points (101), field goals (36), field goal attempts (74), defensive rebounds (34), assists (22), steals (12) and points in a half (55) and field goal percentage in a half (57.5).  The squad also held Wagner to opponent lows in field goal percentage (31.1), 3-point field goal percentage (21.7) and field goal percentage in a half (22.9).

Five Wildcats in scored in double figures led by 20-point efforts by freshmen Bill Walker and Michael Beasley.  It marked the first time since the Missouri game on Jan. 13, 2007 that five players scored in double figures, while it marked the first time since the season opener that two players scored 20 or more points.  Walker had 27 points and 10 rebounds, while Beasley tallied 21 points and 10 rebounds.

samuels, sutton join squad
K-State head coach Frank Martin received a pair of belated holiday gifts on Wednesday when high school recruits Jamar Samuels and Dominique Sutton were cleared to begin competing for the Wildcats.

“It’s a real exciting time for me because these two young men have remained loyal to us throughout a difficult process,” said Martin.  “They have continued to work on getting their academic situations in order to be able to be here at K-State.  They both bring tremendous athleticism and toughness to our basketball team.  It’s going to be a crash course for them to come in and try and learn as fast as they can to catch up to the rest of the team.  However, they are the kind of young men that fit into what I like in players.  They care about nothing but winning.  They want to do whatever they can to help us win.”  

Both Samuels and Sutton come to Kansas State after playing at The Patterson School in Lenoir, N.C., for head coach Chris Chaney.  The duo played a major role in helping the Bulldogs to a 36-4 overall record and a No. 3 national prep school ranking in 2006-07.  The squad advanced to the inaugural Prep School National Championship, where they lost in the semifinals to the eventual national champions Notre Dame (Mass.) Prep, led by future teammate Michael Beasley.

Sutton averaged 15.0 points, 7.5 rebounds and a team-leading 3.0 steals per game as a senior, while Samuels was the first players off the bench for the Bulldogs.  Both players starred on the AAU circuit with the DC Assault alongside Beasley and Ron Anderson.   

A 6-foot-8, 220-pound forward from Washington, D.C., Samuels played just one season at The Patterson School after a stellar playing career at Archibishop Carroll High School.  He averaged 22 points, nine rebounds and three blocks per game as a junior, while he
averaged 12 points, 10 rebounds and four blocks as a sophomore.
 
A 6-foot-4, 195-pound shooting guard from Durham, N.C., Sutton was rated among the top players in the country in 2006, including the No. 57 overall prospect by Scout.com and No. 131 prospect in the
Rivals150 by Rivals.com.  He was also ranked among the top-50 at his position by a number of outlets, including No. 11 by Scout.com, No. 21 by High School Hoops magazine and No. 39 by Rivals.com.  In addition, he was rated the No. 2 in North Carolina by Rivals.com.

Sutton played two year for The Patterson School after transferring from Durham Jordan High School.  As a sophomore, he averaged 19.7 points in guiding the Falcons to a 19-8 overall record and the 4-A Western Regional semifinals.  He was named to AP All-State second team and was the Durham Sun-Herald Player of the Year.

Sutton will receive the final scholarship for 2007-08 season, while Samuels will be a walk-on until receiving a scholarship for the 2008-09 season.  Samuels will wear No. 21 and Sutton will don the No. 23.

taking advantage of the charity stripe
In recording 80 or more points in each of the last four games, Kansas State has taken advantage of its opportunities from the free throw line.  The team is averaging 24.8 points from the charity stripe (on an average of 35 attempts) during its four-game winning streak, while hitting on 72.3 percent of its opportunities.  In comparison, the squad averaged just 14.9 points from the line in the first eight games on 23.4 attempts for just an 63.6 percentage.  The team has now posted 20 or more free throws in four consecutive games for the first time in almost 20 years.  The last time the Wildcats did it in three straight contests was in games 12-14 during the 1991-92 season.

This season, the Wildcats have hit on 20 or more free throws in seven of 12 games, including a season-high 28 in their 82-75 win over
previously unbeaten California on Dec. 9.  The team is averaging 21.3 points (on 31.3 attempts) from the charity stripe in its nine wins and just 8.7 points (on 14 attempts) in its three losses.   

cats solid in december
Kansas State is 434-222 (.661) all-time in the month of December, including wins in 29 of its last 37 games.  The loss to Notre Dame ended the Wildcats’ six-game winning streak in the month that dated back to the an 84-83 defeat at Colorado State on Dec. 2, 2006.  The win over Wagner gave K-State 11 straight wins at home in the month dating back to a win over Eastern Illinois on Dec. 30, 2005.

cats good inside the arc
Kansas State has proven to be better inside the 3-point arc this year, converting on 50.6 percent (275-of-543) of its 2-point field goals.  The team has connected on 50 percent or better from inside the arc in seven of 12 games, including a season-high 57.7 percent (30-of-52) against Wagner (12/29).   Five of the Wildcats’ top-7 scorers also prove to more effective inside the 3-point arc, including freshman
forward Michael Beasley (58.8; 104-of-177), freshman guard Jacob Pullen (52.0, 26-of-50), senior guard Clent Stewart (50.0; 20-of-40) and junior forward Andre Gilbert (47.2; 17-of-36).   

non-conference success
The win against Winston-Salem gave the Wildcats’ at least eight non-conference wins for the 23rd time in the last 27 seasons, including each of the last six seasons.  A victory also guaranteed the program a winning record in non-league play for the 36th straight season dating back to the 1972-73 season.  K-State has won 37 of its last 48 games against non-conference foes, including a remarkable 30-2 mark at home.  The Wildcats’ loss to Oregon on Nov. 29 was the team’s first to a home non-conference home opponent since 2004.

newcomers a big part of success
One of the nation’s top recruiting classes has been a big success so far for Kansas State, as the newcomers have posted over 60 percent of the Wildcats’ points (604) and blocks (32) and over 50 percent of the rebounds (304), steals (51) and assists (99).  Most of these have come from freshman phenom Michael Beasley, who owns over 30 percent of the team’s points (310) and rebounds (164).  In all, three of the top-4 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 year, the totals increase to over 75 percent of the points (744) and blocks (41) and almost 70 percent of the rebounds (373) and steals (66).

okay, this guy’s pretty good
Freshman Michael Beasley earned Phillips 66 Big 12 Rookie of the Week honors for the second time this season on Wednesday after recording a freshman school-record high 40 points in the win over Winston-Salem State on Dec. 22.  He went 14-of-22 from the field,
including 3-of-4 from beyond the arc, with 15 rebounds, three blocks, one assist and one steal in 23 minutes.  He scored 28 of his 40 points in the second half, including 24 of the team’s first 29 of the half.

Beasley is the first Kansas State player to earn Phillips 66 Big 12 Rookie of the Week honors twice in a season since David Hoskins did it twice during the 2005-06 season.  He became the first Wildcat to win Phillips 66 Big 12 Player of the Week accolades since 2005 on Nov. 12 when he averaged 31.0 points and 19.0 rebounds in wins over Sacramento State and Pittsburg State to start the season.

beasley breaks another one
Michael Beasley made history yet again with his 40-point effort against Winston-Salem State on Dec. 22, as he broke fellow rookie Norris Coleman’s mark of 39 points against Colorado on Jan. 18, 1986 for the most by a freshman.  He now owns several school records, including for most points by a freshman in a debut (32 vs. Sacramento State), most rebounds by a freshman (24 vs. Sacramento State) and most consecutive double-doubles by a freshman (11).

The 40 points are the most by a Wildcat since Askia Jones tallied a school-record 62 points against Fresno State in the second round of the Postseason NIT on March 24, 1994.  He is the ninth Wildcat in to record a 40-point game, while his 40-point effort ties Mike Evans (40 vs. Colorado, 1/15/77) for the eighth-highest scoring total in a game.

wildcats to score 40 or more points
62 by Askia Jones vs. Fresno State, 3/24/94
*47 by Chuckie Williams vs. Holy Cross, 12/5/75
*46 by Mike Wroblewski at Kansas, 2/7/62
*45 by Bob Boozer vs. Purdue, 12/1/58
*42 by Dick Knostman vs. Oklahoma, 2/14/53
41 by Steve Henson vs. Iowa State, 2/17/90
*41 by Mitch Richmond vs. Oklahoma, 2/13/88
40 by Mike Evans vs. Colorado, 1/15/77
40 by Michael Beasley vs. Winston-Salem State, 12/22/07
 *Was named an All-American following season.

30-30-30-30-40
With his 40-point performance against Winston-Salem State, Michael Beasley now has notched five contests of 30 or more points this year, which ranks fourth all-time at Kansas State for a single-season.  He now just trails Bob Boozer (7, 1958-59), Norris Coleman (7, 1985-86) and Mitch Richmond (6, 1987-88) for the most in a single year.  Beasley also ties Askia Jones (1989-94), Dick Knostman (1950-53) and Curtis Redding (1976-78) for the fifth-most 30-point games in a career.  Boozer is the all-time leader with 10 from 1956-59.

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.  Beasley is averaging 25.8 points and 13.7 rebounds per game through 12 games with 12 consecutive 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) to average a double-double for a season.

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).

better in the second half
Michael Beasley tends to get better as the game goes on, averaging 15.1 points on 70.7 percent shooting to go with 5.8 rebounds per game in the second half this season.  He has scored in double figures in nine of 12 second halves this season, including 23 points against Western Illinois (11/17) and 24 against George Mason (11/22) and 28 against Winston-Salem State (12/22).  He had a double-double just in the second half against WIU with 12 rebounds to go with 23 points. 

In contrast, he is averaging 11.0 points on 41.3 percent shooting with 8.3 rebounds per game in the first half.  He has scored in double
figures in just seven first halves this season, but he did have a double-double (16 points and 17 rebounds) in his first collegiate half against Sacramento State on Nov. 9.

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, three assists and one steal in 29 minutes.  He is the first player to top 30 points in consecutive games since Askia Jones did it against Colorado (32) and Oklahoma (31) 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. 

Beasley turned in his first career 20-point/20-rebound game in the opener against Sacramento State with a freshman-debut high 32 points and 24 rebounds on Nov. 9.  

walker back to full strength
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 (14.0 ppg.) and rebounding (6.9 rpg.), while he is second in steals (1.5 spg.) and free throw percentage (77.2).  He has now scored in double figures in 11 of his 16 career games, including seven of 10 games this season.

Walker might be playing the finest basketball of his young Wildcat career during the team’s current four-game winning streak.  In gaining the start in each of these contests, he is averaging 18.0 points on 44.4 percent shooting (20-of-45), including 54.5 percent shooting from 3-point range, with 8.0 rebounds, 1.3 steals and 1.0 assists in 24.3 minutes per game.  He has connected on 83.9 percent (26-of-31) from the free throw line during the current streak.

After battling through a variety injuries to start the season, Walker has now played in six 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 can through with another stellar performance against Wagner (12/29) with a game-high 27 points on 9-of-14 field goals with a career-tying 10 rebounds with a career-high three blocks in a mere 25 minutes.  

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
Freshman forward Bill Walker earned Phillips 66 Big 12 Rookie of the Week honors on Dec. 10 after averaging 22.0 points and 8.0 rebounds in games against Notre Dame and California.

For the week, Walker averaged 22.0 points on 39.4 percent shooting (13-of-33), including 33.3 percent (2-of-6), with 8.0 rebounds, 3.0 steals, 1.0 assist and 1.0 block in 34.0 minutes per game.  He also connected on 88.9 percent (16-of-18) from the free throw line.

Walker played arguably his best game as a Wildcat in the team’s 82-75 win over previously unbeaten California on Dec. 9, as he set or tied career-highs in nine categories.  He posted a career-high 30 points on 7-of-22 field goals, including 2-of-5 from 3-point range, with a career tying 10 rebounds, a career-high four steals and two assists in 35 minutes of action.  Walker also set then career-highs for field goals (7), field goal attempts (22), 3-point field goals (2), 3-point field goal
attempts (5), free throws (14) and free throw attempts (16). 

The performance followed a solid outing against Notre Dame on Dec. 4, as he tallied 14 points against the Fighting Irish on 6-of-11 field goals with six rebounds, two blocks and two steals in 33 minutes.  He scored 12 of his 14 points in the second half on 5-of-8 shooting in playing all 20 minutes. 

iron man
A team mainstay the past three seasons, senior guard Clent Stewart has become a guiding force for a young squad.  He has been a steady force during a crucial stretch in the last six games, averaging 10.8 points on 43.8 percent shooting with 3.8 rebounds and 3.0 assists against the likes of Oregon, Notre Dame and California.  He has been even better during the current winning streak, scoring in double figures in all four games and averaging 12.5 points on 50.0 percent shooting with 3.5 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 2.3 steals in 28 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 334 assists, Stewart now trails just leader Steve Henson (582, 1987-90) on the all-time list.
 
He currently sits in sixth place all-time in minutes played with 2,721, passing former teammate Lance Harris (2,618; 2003-07) with a
season-high 34 minutes against California.  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 secured ninth place to himself on the games started list with the 75th start of his career against Wagner.  He is also just 11 games from breaking into the top-10 for career games played (102).

young comes through in clutch
Senior Blake Young came through a pair of big 3-point field goals in the second half of the win over California.  After missing his first field goal attempt, Young hit his first trey with 3:06 remaining to give the Wildcats’ a two-point lead then followed less than a minute later to break a 69-all tie and give the team the lead for good with 2:19 left.  He finished the game with eight points on 2-of-3 shooting with four rebounds, two assists and two steals in 35 minutes.

Young, who ranks sixth on the team in both scoring (7.3 ppg.) and rebounding (3.0 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 12 games this season.  He also has the longest active game streak on the team with 47 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 3-point field goals (14), assists (3.3 apg.) and steals (1.5 spg), is third in scoring (10.4 ppg.) and fifth in minutes played (24.2 mpg.).

He has scored in double figures in eight of the team’s first 12 games, including tying his career-high with 19 points in back-to-back wins over UCF and Rider at the Old Spice Classic.  He combined to go 6-of-14 from 3-point range in those victories, including a season-high four treys against the Knights.  He has also been stellar from the free throw line, going 18-of-23 (78.3 percent) at the Old Spice Classic to rank second on the team at 70.3 percent for the season. 

He opened the season with 18 points against Sacramento State in his first collegian game on 7-of-11 shooting to go with a team-high five assists and two steals.  He made it double figures in two of his first three games, scoring 10 points against Western Illinois on Nov. 17.

what brown can do for you
Yet another talented freshman is starting to emerge from the bench, as rookie Fred Brown has posted solid efforts in the past three games.  He is averaging 8.7 points on 44.4 percent shooting in that span with 3.7 rebounds, 1.3 steals and 1.0 assists in 16.0 minutes per game.  After playing a combined 16 minutes in the previous five games, Brown logged a then season-high 16 minutes of action against Florida A&M with nine points on 4-of-6 shooting and four rebounds.  He followed with nine points on 4-of-9 shooting against Winston-Salem State.  Brown continued his impressive play against Wagner, registering career-highs in rebounds (6), steals (4) and minutes (23) to go with eight points and two assists.         

gilbert not just one-game wonder
Junior college transfer Andre Gilbert broke out against Rider on Nov. 25 and even outshined fellow newcomer Michael Beasley.  The transfer from Mount San Jacinto College in California, nearly doubled his season total for points against the Broncs with a team-high 22 points on 7-of-11 field goals, including 4-of-6 from beyond the arc, with five rebounds, two assists and one steal in 28 minutes of action.  He followed this performance with yet another stellar effort against Oregon (11/29), posting 16 points on 6-of-14 shooting with four
rebounds and four assists in a season-high 32 minutes.  He averaged 19.0 points on 52.0 percent shooting, including 50.0 percent from
beyond the arc, with 4.5 rebounds in those two games.  Gilbert came into the Rider game with a total of 13 points in the first five games with a previous high of seven against Pitt State on Nov. 11.  The 22 points broke his previous high of 17 against Manhattan on Dec. 20, 2005 when he was redshirt freshman at South Dakota State.

anderson a monster on boards
Another true freshman making an immediate impact for the Wildcats is Ron Anderson, who ranks first on the team in field goal percentage (58.5) and third in rebounding (5.3 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.  The rookie has registered eight or more rebounds in four games this year, including a career-high 12 against Pitt State on Nov. 11.