Teams: Oklahoma State (12-2, 0-0) vs. Kansas State (12-3, 0-0)
Location: Gallagher-Iba Arena
Time: 12:00 CST
AP Rankings: Oklahoma State – N/A, K-State – #17
RPI: Oklahoma State – #43, K-State – #25
Behind enemy lines: Bring On The Cats
As John Helsley pointed out yesterday in his column, this isn’t must win but it’s a huge game. I think we’re all in agreement that 9 wins is the magic number to get your ticket punched for the dance. When you start talking about having to go to Boulder and to Lincoln and to Phog Allen and to Austin and to Waco, well, it doesn’t take a genius to realize there aren’t a ton of winnable road games. What does that mean? You have to protect home court. And you definitely have to protect it against a wounded Wildcat squad missing, arguably, their best player.
A win against Kansas State, I don’t care if it’s in Stillwater, Manhattan, or Qatar, would be massive for a team like OSU desperate to fill out its tournament resume. And to start off on the right foot (hold the Kyrie jokes) is just what Travis Ford needs.
Lastly, am I crazy, or does Jacob Pullen look like a modern-day African-American Abe Lincoln with that beard and everything?
What I’m worried about:
Two things. One, classes don’t start until Monday which means most students are squeezing in all the “I’m still a big dog in my hometown, lets put off going back to college” time they can which means Gallagher-Iba is going to be dead again. The second is the fact that Jacob Pullen is back from his Peter Warrick-esque suspension. I’m terrified of Jacob Pullen.
Two random stats that (probably) only interest me:
Kansas State beat Gonzaga by 17, OSU lost to Gonzaga by 21.
Keiton Page and Marshall Moses have combined for 44% of OSUs total points this year.
Video to get you ready:
I’m sure everybody remembers that fateful night last March in Salt Lake when Gus Johnson almost screamed himself to death.