The Kansas State Wildcats and the Montana State Bobcats meet in an NCAA Tournament First Round matchup in college basketball action from the Greensboro Coliseum on Friday night.
Kansas State Wildcats Team Preview
The Kansas State Wildcats come into the NCAA Tournament after going 23-9 overall in the regular season including an 11-7 mark in Big 12 conference play. The Wildcats’ stay in the conference tournament was short-lived though, as they fell to TCU in the quarterfinals. Keyontae Johnson leads the Wildcats in scoring and rebounding with 17.7 PPG and 7 RPG while Markquis Nowell has 16.8 PPG with a team-high 7.6 APG to lead K-State in the assist department. Nae’Qwan Tomlin has 10.2 PPG with 6 RPG to cap off the trio of double-digit scorers for Kansas State up to this point in the year. As a team, Kansas State is averaging 75.5 PPG on 45.3% shooting from the field, 34% from three and 75% from the foul line this season.
Montana State Bobcats Team Preview
The Montana State Bobcats come into the NCAA Tournament after finishing the regular season at 25-9 overall including a 15-3 mark in Big Sky conference play. Montana State would take down Northern Colorado and Weber State before taking down Northern Arizona in the conference championship game. RaeQuan Battle leads the Bobcats in scoring with 17.4 PPG while Jubrile Belo has 13 PPG with a team-high 6.1 RPG to lead the Bobcats on the glass. Great Osobor has 10 PPG to cap off the trio of double-digit scorers for Montana State up to this point in the year. Darius Brown II also has a team-high 4.8 APG to lead the Bobcats in the assist department as well this season. As a team, Montana State is averaging 74.2 PPG on 46.9% shooting from the field, 33.8% from three and 75.9% from the foul line.
I’m taking a shot on Montana State here. I have no doubts that this Kansas State team is legit and will put forth a solid showing. The problem is that the Wildcats have been statistically and significantly worse on the road or at least away from home this season and even on a neutral floor, I don’t think it’ll help here. Montana State’s no joke as they have great guard play and at times, K-State can be a bit too reliant on the likes of Nowell and Johnson. I think this is a potential upset spot so I’ll take a shot on Montana State and the points.