Who: Kansas State Wildcats (18-8 Overall, 8-5 Big 12) vs. Oklahoma Sooners (19-7 Overall, Big 8-5)
Where: Lloyd Noble Center; Norman, Oklahoma
When: Saturday 3pm, CST
TV: Big 12 Network, ESPN3 (subject to blackout)
The Kansas State Wildcats once again protected their home floor with a victory over TCU on Wednesday night. They were led by Thomas Gipson, who had a double-double with 16 points and 11 rebounds in a 65-53 win.
On Saturday afternoon, Head Coach Bruce Weber and the Wildcats will be in Norman to take on the Oklahoma Sooners. K-State won the first meeting in Bramlage 72-66 thanks to some big shots late from the Wildcats. The Sooners were ranked #25 back in January.
Kansas State is right back on the road following another tough defeat last road trip in double-overtime against Baylor. As a team, the Wildcats will need to somehow put the pieces together and come up big; both teams look to position themselves for the Big 12 tournament.
Gipson was very quiet in the scoring department in the first meeting versus the Sooners. He will have to do a lot more on Saturday if the Wildcats have any chances of winning. Gipson will have to deal with Ryan Spangler who had a big game in Manhattan.
Oklahoma likes to spread the floor and shoot shoot quickly any chance they get. The defense for K-State will need to be physical with the Sooners and also get up on the glass early and often. Gipson and D.J. Johnson will have their hands full with Spangler and Cameron Clark if they’re not to careful.
The Wildcats made things tough on Clark in Manhattan and will need to transfer some of that toughness Saturday afternoon.
The Opponent: Oklahoma
Sooners have not played since last weekend on the road when they took down their in-state rival Oklahoma State 77-74 on the road in Stillwater. Buddy Hield led the come-from-behind win with 22 points. Ryan Spangler had 12 points and 13 rebounds. Oklahoma’s overall record is 19-7 and 8-5 in the Big 12 conference, which is tied for third with K-State and Iowa State.
Shane Southwell has miss the last few games with an injury. If Southwell is on the floor on Saturday that will be a huge boost. Meanwhile, Marcus Foster will need to come up big if Southwell still cannot go for the Cats. Foster scored 18 points in the win back in Bramlage versus the Sooners.