Jan 18, 2014; Manhattan, KS, USA; West Virginia Mountaineers forward Nathan Adrian (11) is blocked out by Kansas State Wildcats forward Thomas Gipson (42) and guard Omari Lawrence (12) during the Mountaineers

Kansas State Wildcats Fall To West Virginia Mountaineers, 81-71

Let’s start this post by taking a look at what someone on KC Kingdom said at the Kansas State Wildcats only two weeks ago.

“Good teams easily dispatch bad teams. That’s why the Kansas State Wildcats beat the West Virginia Mountaineers  so easily on Saturday with a 22 point rout. The Wildcats are starting to have the markings of a “good” team,” – Austin Earl

In retrospect, that was not a very cogent statement. The Wildcats fell today by double digits to a team they beat by 22 points earlier in the season. With all things considered, the second contest definitely never should have been an easy game for K-state. Traveling to Morgantown against a team that is starting to play better is difficult. But the 32-point swing is absolutely crazy.

Where is the defense? Junior Juwan Staten scored 35 points on Saturday, with 18 of those coming from the charity stripe. Earlier this season, the Wildcats played very good defense without getting into foul trouble. But the fouls–coupled with 78.9% free throw shooting–doomed K-State in this game.

The Wildcats have prided themselves on stingy defense all season, but have given up 81 points in two of their past three games. They need to put the clamps back down on that side of the court if they want to win ball games. No matter who they are playing, it seems that K-State will put up about 70 points. If they play good defense, they will win. If they don’t, they will lose. Their formula is that simple, currently.

No one can be mad at freshman Marcus Foster offensively on the road, any more. Foster poured in 23 points for the Wildcats on Saturday. Thomas Gipson scored 19 points of his own, and “Sun’s out, guns out” Will Spradling put in nine points. But the biggest disappointment was Shane Southwell only putting in five points. Offensively, this team is what it is. Defense is the focus.

This is a disappointing loss for K-State. A team that looked like it had turned the corner has lost 3 of 4, and is struggling to find any success on the road. The Wildcats need to get better in enemy territory if they want to be admitted to the Big Dance.


Tags: Kansas State Wildcats

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