Dec. 26, 2013
Game Notes in PDF Format | Live Stats | Live Audio | FOX Sports 2 Finder
TULANE (7-6, 0-0 Conference USA)
AT KANSAS STATE (8-3, 0-0 Big 12)
Brooklyn Winter Hoops Festival Presented by Honda
Saturday, Dec. 28 >> Barclays Center (18,103) >>
Brooklyn, N.Y. >> 4 p.m. CT
FOX Sports 2
Justin Kutcher (play-by-play) >> Tarik Turner (analyst) >> Steve Scheer (producer)
AT&T U-verse 651 >> DirecTV 618 >> Dish Network 398 >>
Cox Communications 243 >> Time Warner 328
Channel Finder: http://msn.foxsports.com/other/story/find-fox-sports-1-on-your-tv
K-State Sports Network
Brian Smoller (play-by-play)
Sirius 93/XM 191
Stats - www.sidearmstats.com/liubrooklyn/mbball/
Audio - www.kstatesports.com/allaccess/
$33.10 (100 level) >> $44.35 (mid-bowl) >> $77 (lower bowl) >> $121.40 (sideline)
Kansas State: Bruce Weber (UW-Milwaukee '78)
Overall: 348-166 (15th year)
At K-State: 35-11 (2nd year)
vs. Tulane: 0-0
Tulane: Ed Conroy (The Citadel '89)
Overall: 145-186 (11th year)
At Tulane: 55-54 (4th year)
vs. K-State: 0-0
PROJECTED STARTING LINEUP
Kansas State (8-3)
G - Will Spradling (7.7 ppg., 2.7 apg.)
G - Marcus Foster (14.4 ppg., 3.9 rpg.)
G - Shane Southwell (9.9 ppg., 5.2 rpg.)
F - Wesley Iwundu (7.0 ppg., 5.1 rpg.)
F - Thomas Gipson (12.0 ppg., 5.6 rpg.)
G - Jonathan Stark (17.6 ppg., 4.4 apg.)
G - Louis Dabney (19.9 ppg., 5.1 rpg.)
G - Jay Hook (15.9 ppg., 6.3 rpg.)
F - Tre Drye (5.8 ppg., 7.6 rpg.)
F - Tomas Bruha (2.4 ppg., 1.4 rpg.)
INSIDE THE SERIES
Overall: Tulane leads 2-1
vs. Conference USA: K-State leads 24-14 (5-3 at neutral sites)
In Manhattan: K-State leads 1-0 (W, 81-69, 1/10/1976)
In New Orleans: Tulane leads 1-0 (W, 71-57, 1/11/1975)
Last Meeting: Tulane, 55-53, 3/18/1993 (Orlando, Fla.)
Weber vs. Tulane: First meeting
Weber vs. Conroy: First meeting
Kansas State (8-3) returns from its short Holiday break on Saturday, as the Wildcats play Tulane (7-6) as part of a tripleheader in the Brooklyn Hoops Winter Festival at the Barclays Center (18,103) at 4 p.m. CT. The arena, which is the newest professional arena opening in September 2012, is the home of the NBA's Brooklyn Nets and NHL's New York Islanders.
The Wildcats and Green Wave will play the second game of the festival with St. John's and Columbia tipping off first at 1:30 p.m. CT and VCU and Boston College capping the event at 6:30 p.m. CT.
This will be K-State's first game in Brooklyn in more than 63 years since playing a high-profile, 5-game series with Long Island and famed head coach Clair Bee from 1948-51. The schools played four of those match-ups in Brooklyn, the last of which came on Dec. 2, 1950 - a 60-59 LIU win.
The teams also met in 1948 (twice) and 1949 (a 58-51 Wildcat win).
This will be the fourth meeting between K-State and Tulane and the first since the 11th-seeded Green Wave defeated the 6th-seeded Wildcats, 55-53, in the 1993 NCAA South Regional First Round at the Orlando Arena on March 18. The schools also split a home-and-home series in 1975 and 1976 with each team winning on their own home court.
K-State owns a 6-game winning streak, which is the longest since also winning 6 in a row from Feb. 16-March 5, 2013. The last time the squad won more than that was an 8-game streak from Dec. 18, 2012-Jan. 9, 2013. This is the third win streak of more than 6 games under Bruce Weber.
During the 6-game winning streak, the Wildcats are holding foes to 52.8 points on 38 percent shooting, including 24.6 percent from 3-point range, while holding a +10.8 rebounding advantage (41.8-31.0). The team has out-rebounded eight opponents, including each of its last seven foes.
K-State leads the Big 12 and ranks in the Top 10 nationally in scoring defense (59.6 ppg., 9th) and 3-point field goal percentage defense (25.8, 6th). The Wildcats have held nine of their last 10 opponents to under their scoring average, including six to 60 points or less.
Freshman Marcus Foster ranks in the Top 15 in four Big 12 categories, including a team-leading 14.4 points per game. He is one of two freshmen (Kansas' Andrew Wiggins) to rank in the Big 12's Top 15 in scoring. He has scored in double figures in 10 consecutive games.
Saturday's game could serve as the debut of freshman Jevon Thomas, who became eligible on Dec. 21 after signing as a mid-year enrollee.
THE OPPONENT: TULANE (7-6)
Tulane (7-6) enters Saturday's game on a two-game winning streak after knocking off Alabama State (84-66) and Northeastern (65-62) on Dec. 21-22 to win the Westin Holiday Classic in New Orleans. The Green Wave opened the season with four straight wins before dropping five in a row from Nov. 23 to Dec. 4. They have now come back to win three of their last four games.
Six of Tulane's seven wins have come at home, while the school is 1-1 on the road and 0-2 at neutral sites. The Green Wave lost to Texas State (70-52) and SE Missouri State (102-72) at the Cure UCD Classic in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico on Nov. 29-30.
Tulane is averaging 70.8 points on 43.7 percent shooting, including 33.8 percent from 3-point range, to go with 33.8 rebounds, 9.4 assists, 5.2 steals and 2.5 blocks per game, while allowing 73.3 points per game on 47.6 percent shooting.
Sophomore Louis Dabney paces three players in double figures at 19.9 points per game, while connecting on 46.8 percent from the field to go with 5.1 rebounds, 2.4 assists and a team-high 1.5 steals per game. Freshman Jonathan Stark averages 17.6 points per game on 46.9 percent shooting with a team-high 4.4 assists per game, while junior Jay Hook adds 15.9 points on 47.1 percent shooting to go with a team-high 29 3-pointers. Junior Tre Drye leads the team in rebounding at 7.6 per game.
Tulane is led by fourth-year coach Ed Conroy, who led the Green Wave to a 20-win season and a berth in CollegeInsider.com Tournament in 2012-13. He has a 145-186 record, which includes time at Francis Marion (1997-2000) and The Citadel (2006-10).
BREAKING DOWN THE SERIES
This will be the fourth meeting between K-State and Tulane and the first since the 11th-seeded Green Wave defeated the 6th-seeded Wildcats, 55-53, in the 1993 NCAA South Regional First Round at the Orlando Arena on March 18. n Tulane won the first meeting, 71-57, at home on Jan. 11, 1975 before K-State earned its lone win in the series at home by a score of 81-69 on Jan. 10, 1976. This will be the second meeting on a neutral court after the 1993 NCAA Tournament contest.
K-State is 24-14 all-time against current members of Conference USA, including a 5-3 mark at neutral sites.
GONZAGA POSTGAME NOTES
K-State has now defeated at least one Top 25 team in each of the last eight seasons... The school is now 96-219 all-time vs. ranked opponents, including 1-3 against teams ranked No. 21 in The Associated Press Top 25 poll.
Head coach Bruce Weber has now defeated at least one Top 25 team in each of the last 13 seasons.
K-State has now held nine of 11 opponents to below 65 points this season, including Gonzaga to a season-low 62 points.
K-State out-rebounded Gonzaga, 32-31, marking the seventh straight game the Wildcats have out-rebounded their opponent. n K-State forced Gonzaga into a season-high 12 turnovers, scoring 13 points off of those miscues... The team has scored double-digit points off of turnovers in nine games, including six in a row, and are averaging 13.2 points off turnovers this season.
K-State committed a season-low four turnovers vs. Gonzaga, which is tied for the third-lowest total in school history and the lowest since also posting just four turnovers vs. Presbyterian on Nov. 18, 2010.
K-State had a season-high four players score in double figures, while nine players total scored in the game.
Freshman Marcus Foster scored in double figures for the 10th consecutive game with a game-tying 14 points to go with a team-tying six rebounds in 35 minutes of action... He also led the team in scoring for a team-leading sixth time.
Junior Thomas Gipson also scored a game-tying 14 points vs. Gonzaga, which marked the sixth time he has scored in double figures this season and the sixth time in the last seven games in twin figures. He has led in scoring 14 times in his career.
Freshman Wesley Iwundu scored in double figures for the third time with 13 points, including nine from the free throw line.
Senior Shane Southwell registered double digit points for the 19th time in his career, including the fifth this season, with 11 points vs. Gonzaga... He also had a team-high six assists (with zero turnovers) and a team-best two steals in 37 minutes.
WINNING WITH DEFENSE
K-State ranks among the Big 12 leaders in defense, placing first in scoring defense (59.6 ppg.) and 3-point field goal percentage defense (25.8). The team also ranks among the Top 10 in 3-point field goal percentage defense (6th) and scoring defense (9th).
The Wildcats have held eight of the last 10 opponents to its season low in points, including to 60 or less on five occasions. Six opponents have been held below 40 percent shooting, while nine have shot less than 31 percent from 3-point range.
If you take out the 90-point effort by Georgetown, the team is holding its 10 other opponents to 56.6 points per game on 38.5 percent shooting, including 24.3 percent from 3-point range, while forcing 15.0 turnovers per game.
K-State held Gonzaga to a season-low 62 points on 48 percent shooting (24-of-50), including 33.3 percent (7-of-21) from 3-point range. The Bulldogs came into the game ranking 11th in scoring offense (87.5 ppg.) and among the Top 5 nationally in field goal percentage (52.6), 3-point field goal percentage (44.4) and total 3-point field goals made (100).
K-State held Ole Miss to a season-low 58 points on 37.9 percent shooting, including 16.7 percent from 3-point range on Dec. 5, while reigning SEC scoring champion Marshall Henderson was held to just 13 points on 4-of-18 field goals.
Long Beach State's 38 points on Nov. 24 tied for the fifth-fewest by an opponent in K-State's modern era, which dates to the 1946-47 season. It was the fewest since Alabama-Huntsville scored 26 on Nov. 13, 2012.
K-State has held 22 opponents to 60 points or less under Bruce Weber with an impressive 20-2 record in those games.
REBOUNDING AS A TEAM
A big key for K-State during its 6-game winning streak has been its rebounding, where the team has held a +65 edge (251-186) on the glass. The Wildcats have 90 offensive rebounds (15.0 orpg.) and 80 second-chance points (13.3 ppg.) in that span.
With its relatively small team, Bruce Weber has emphasized team rebounding and the Wildcats have responded with at least four players posting at least 4 rebounds in each win, including at least five players with 4+ rebounds in the last four games.
K-State is now 27-2 under Bruce Weber when out-rebounding its opponent, including 7-1 this season.
The Wildcats have out-rebounded eight of 11 opponents this season, including a streak of seven consecutive games.
K-State posted a season-high 52 rebounds vs. Central Arkansas (12/1), including 23 offensive boards. It was most rebounds since 54 vs. North Florida (11/18/2012) and the most offensive boards since 24 vs. George Washington (12/8/2012).
Five different Wildcats have led the team in rebounding, including four times by Thomas Gipson and D.J. Johnson and twice by Wesley Iwundu and Shane Southwell. Gipson, Iwundu and Johnson have each tallied double-digit boards.
K-State ranks fifth in the Big 12 in rebounding at 38.0 per game and rebounding margin at +3.5.
The Wildcats tie for second in the Big 12 in offensive rebounds at 13.8 per game, while three players - Gipson (5th - 2.7), Johnson (8th - 2.5) and Iwundu (13th - 2.0) - rank among the Top 15. Only K-State and Texas have three players in the Top 15.
GIPSON RETURNS TO FORM
Junior Thomas Gipson is starting to return to form after an injury sidelined him for the first two games. He is averaging 12.0 points on a team-best 60 percent shooting with 5.6 rebounds in 22.2 minutes per game since returning vs. LBSU (11/17).
Gipson ranks first in rebounding average and second in scoring, field goals (42) and blocked shots (5).
During the team's current 6-game winning streak, he is both the leading scorer (14.3 ppg.) and rebounder (6.8 rpg.).
104 of his 108 points have been scored in the last seven games with team-highs of 18 points vs. Georgetown (11/22) and Long Beach State (11/24), 17 vs. Central Arkansas (12/1), 15 vs. Ole Miss (12/5), 13 vs. South Dakota (12/10) and 14 vs. Gonzaga (12/21). During this span, he is averaging 14.9 points on 63.1 percent shooting to go with 6.7 rebounds per game.
Gipson has scored in double figures in six of the last seven games, which marks the longest such stretch in his career.
Gipson earned his fifth double-double vs. Long Beach State (11/24) with a game-high 18 points on 8-of-12 field goals and 10 rebounds. It was his first double-double since his 14-point, 12-rebound effort vs. Texas Southern on Dec. 18, 2012.
FOSTER OFF TO STRONG START
Freshman Marcus Foster is off to strong start to his career, as he paces the Wildcats in scoring at 14.4 points per game on 37.5 percent shooting, including 34.8 percent from 3-point range. He also leads the team in field goals (51), 3-point field goals (24), steals (11) and minutes (30.7). He ranks among the Big 12's Top 15 in five categories, including 5th in 3-point field goals (2.2), 6th in minutes, 10th in 3-point field goal percentage, 11th in scoring and 14th in free throw percentage (74.4). He is one of two Big 12 freshmen (along with Kansas' Andrew Wiggins) to rank in the Top 15 in scoring.
Foster has scored in double figures in 10 consecutive games, while he has led the team in scoring six times.
His 42 combined points vs. Oral Roberts (11/13) and Long Beach State (11/17) were the most in back-to-back games by a Wildcat freshman since Michael Beasley scored 46 against USC and Wisconsin in the 2008 NCAA Tournament.
Foster scored a game-high 25 points vs. Oral Roberts (11/13), hitting on 9-of-12 field goals, including 4-of-5 from 3-point range. It was the most points by a freshman since Michael Beasley had 25 vs. Texas A&M in the Big 12 Championship quarterfinals on March 14, 2008. He is the first freshman to post a 20-point game since teammate Thomas Gipson in 2011.
Foster has knocked down at least one 3-pointer in 10 straight games, including a season-best four on three occasions.
Foster became just the 17th true freshmen to start an opener since 1973-74, including the eighth since 2003-04.
FRESHMEN A BIG PART
The freshmen trio of Marcus Foster, Wesley Iwundu and Nigel Johnson combined to lead the Wildcats in scoring in the first four games, marking the first time a freshman has done that since Michael Beasley did it the first four games of 2007-08. Overall, the freshmen have paced the team in scoring eight times in 11 games, including six times by Foster.
Foster and Iwundu have started together in 10 of the last 11 games, while Johnson is averaging 17.9 minutes off the bench (tops among players with zero starts). The trio rank first (Foster), fourth (Iwundu) and sixth (Johnson) in minutes played.
The freshmen accounted for 31 of the team's 61 points vs. Ole Miss (12/5) to go with 20 of the 43 rebounds and seven of the 12 assists, while combining to play 97 minutes. Foster (38) and Iwundu (37) played season-high in minutes vs. the Rebels. The trio combined for 33 of the team's 72 points vs. Gonzaga (12/21) with Foster (35) and Iwundu (33) playing 30 or more minutes.
Iwundu became just the third Wildcat true freshman (since they became eligible in 1971-72) to post a double-double in his first career game, joining Norris Coleman (1985) and Michael Beasley (2007). Iwundu was one of two players in double figures against Northern Colorado (11/8) with team-highs in both points (14) and rebounds (10) in 20 minutes off the bench.
Iwundu registered his second double-double vs. Ole Miss (12/5) with 10 points and a game-high 10 rebounds. He is one of seven players in the Big 12 this time with multiple double-doubles, including two freshmen (West Virginia's Devin Williams).
Johnson came off the bench to post a team-high 14 points vs. Charlotte to go with six rebounds and two steals in 23 minutes. He has been key in the last four games, averaging 6.0 points, 2.8 rebounds, 2.8 assists and 0.8 steal in 16.5 minutes per game.
Three freshmen have accounted for 291 points (an average of 26.5 points per game) on 38 percent shooting (90-of-238) with 33 of the team's 57 3-pointers to go with 127 rebounds, 61 assists and 27 steals in a combined 793 minutes.
EXPERIENCE BIG FOR SPRADLING
Senior Will Spradling brings a great deal of experience to a youthful K-State team, having played in 112 games with 83 starts to go with 858 points, 266 assists and 94 steals. He ranks first on the team in steals (11), second in 3-pointers (16) and assists (30), third in minutes (29.4) and fourth in scoring (8.2 ppg.), field goals (25) and free throws (19).
Spradling already ranks among the school's Top 10 in five career categories, including 7th in free throw percentage (81.9) and 3-point field goals (149), 8th in minutes played (3,030), ninth in games started (83) and 10th in steals (94).
Spradling has chance to become the fourth Wildcat with 1,000 points, 250 assists and 100 steals, joining Steve Henson, Askia Jones and Jacob Pullen. He has 266 assists in his career, while he is 142 points short of 1,000 and six steals short of 100.
SOUTHWELL CONTRIBUTING IN MANY WAYS
Senior Shane Southwell is finding ways to contribute in nearly every way, ranking first on the team in assists (3.5 apg.) and blocks (0.8 bpg.), second in field goals (42) and minutes (29.6), third in scoring (9.9 ppg.) and rebounding (5.2 rpg.).
Southwell has been the assist leader in five games, rebounding leader twice and scoring leader once.
Five times he has scored in double figures with a career-tying 19 vs. Central Arkansas (12/1) and 11 vs. Gonzaga (12/21).
Southwell ranks in the Big 12's Top 10 in assists and assist-to-turnover ratio (2.1). n Southwell is one of 22 players in school history (along with Will Spradling) with 200 or more assists in a career, while he adds more than 500 points, 300 rebounds, 60 steals and 50 blocks in 105 career games.
WEBER ANNOUNCES THE SIGNINGS OF HARRIS, HURT
Head coach Bruce Weber announced the signing of Tre Harris (Edwardsville, Ill./Fishburne Military) and Stephen Hurt (Murfreesboro, Tenn./Northwest Florida State Junior College) on Nov. 13.
A 6-foot-10, 275-pound forward, Hurt was the Atlantic Sun Freshman of the Year after averaging 11.5 points and 7.8 rebounds in 2012-13 before transferring to Northwest Florida State College. He was named Florida Junior College Player of the Week on Dec. 3 after averaging 11.2 points on 63.6 percent shooting with 6.3 rebounds in 16.4 minutes in two games.
A 6-foot-5, 185-pound shooting guard, Harris is averaging 19.7 points on 57 percent shooting for the top-ranked Fishburne Military Prep in Waynesboro, Va. He finished No. 4 on the Edwardsville High School scoring list with 1,460 points.
UP NEXT: GEORGE WASHINGTON (10-1)
Tuesday, Dec. 31 >> Bramlage Coliseum (12,528) >> Manhattan, Kan. >> 2 p.m. CT >> FOX Sports Midwest/Kansas City