Kansas State Wildcats (22-10) at Kansas Jayhawks (25-7)
College Basketball: Friday, March 9, 2018 at 7:00 pm (Sprint Center)
The Line: Kansas Jayhawks -6 -- Over/Under: 141.5 Click to Get Latest Betting Odds
The Kansas State Wildcats and 9th ranked Kansas Jayhawks will square off at the Sprint Center this Friday night in the semifinals of the Phillips 66 Big 12 Men’s Championship.
The 4-seed Kansas State Wildcats improved to 22-10 (10-8 Big 12) on the season after defeating the 5-seed TCU Horned Frogs, 66-64 in OT, yesterday afternoon in the quarterfinals of the Phillips 66 Big 12 Men’s Championship. TCU’s Desmond Bane force overtime with a game-typing three-pointer at the end of regulation, however, Kansas State was outstanding defensively in overtime and took the lead for good on a Barry Brown lay-up with just :11 seconds left. Kansas State shot 46.4% from the field and 20.0% (3-15) from beyond the arc in the victory. Leading the way for the Wildcats was Makol Mawien who had 16 points, 9 rebounds, 3 blocks, and a steal. On the season, Kansas State is averaging 72.7 ppg on 47.2% shooting from the field. The Wildcats are averaging 7.2 three-pointers per game on 35.1% shooting from beyond the arc. Offensively, Kansas State has been led by Dean Wade (16.7 ppg, 6.4 rpg, 2.8 apg, 1.5 spg), Barry Brown (16.6 ppg, 3.1 rpg, 3.5 apg, 1.9 spg), Xavier Sneed (10.7 ppg, 4.8 rpg, 1.7 apg, 1.5 spg), and Kamau Stokes (9.7 ppg, 2.2 rpg, 3.7 apg, 1.1 spg). Defensively, Kansas State is holding their opponents to an average of 67.5 ppg on 42.6% shooting from the field. The Wildcats have a rebound margin of -3.2 and a turnover margin of 3.0.
The 9th ranked Kansas Jayhawks, who is the top-seed in the Big 12 Tournament, improved to 25-7 on the season after defeating the Oklahoma State Cowboys, 82-68, yesterday afternoon in the quarterfinals of the Phillips 66 Big 12 Men’s Championship. Kansas Led by a 43-42 margin at halftime and pulled away in the 2nd half after a 14-0 Jayhawks run gave Kansas a 66-50 lead with 8:14 left in regulation. Kansas shot 56.1% from the field and 40.0% (8-20) from beyond the arc in the victory. Leading the way for the Jayhawks was Malik Newman who had 30 points, 1 rebound, 3 assists, and a steal. On the season, Kansas is averaging 81.5 ppg on 49.4% shooting from the field. The Jayhawks are averaging 10.0 three-pointers per game on 39.8% shooting from beyond the arc. Offensively, Kansas has been led by Devontae’ Graham (17.6 ppg, 4.0 rpg, 7.2 apg, 1.6 spg), Sviatoslav Mykhailiuk (15.3 ppg, 4.1 rpg, 2.7 apg, 1.1 spg), Udoka Azubuike (13.7 ppg, 7.1 rpg, 1.8 bpg), and Lagerald Vick (12.2 ppg, 5.0 rpg, 2.4 apg). Defensively, Kansas is allowing their opponents to average 71.1 ppg on 42.2% shooting from the field. The Jayhawks have a rebound margin of 0.3 and a turnover margin of 1.4. Kansas will be without Udoka Azubuike who is out for the Big-12 Tournament due to injury.
The Wildcats are 5-2 ATS in their last 7 games overall and 7-3 ATS in their last 10 Friday games. The Jayhawks are 5-0 ATS in their last 5 Friday games and 17-8 ATS in their last 25 neutral site games.
Kansas won both their matchups against Kansas State this season as the Jayhawks won by a 73-72 margin at home in mid-January, while winning by a 70-56 margin on the road in late January.
Kansas State has won 4 of their last 6 games and has been led by their defense this season that ranks 54th in scoring defense, 99th in defensive FG%, and 24th in steals per game. Kansas didn’t allow Oklahoma State to beat them for a 3rd time this season and has been led by their offense that ranks 35th in scoring offense and 16th in FG%. Kansas shouldn’t feel the effects of nothing having Udoka Azubuike as the Wildcats are not a great rebounding team in general and although the Wildcats defense will be a tougher test for the Jayhawks, I think Kansas offense does just enough to cover this spread. Take Kansas to cover.