Preview and Game Thread: Kansas State vs. Texas Tech

Date: Saturday, March 5th
Time: 2:00 pm
Good Guys: Texas Tech Red Raiders (18-11, 8-9)
Bad Guys: Kansas State Wildcats (16-14, 5-12)
Location: United Supermarkets Arena | Lubbock, Texas
TV/Stream: ESPNews / WatchESPN
Radio/Stream: 97.3 FM/104.3 FM/950 AM

POINT GUARD Kennan Evans (6-3/180) 8.5 / 2.8*
SHOOTING GUARD Toddrick Gotcher (6-4/205) 11.1 / 3.6
SMALL FORWARD Justin Gray (6-6/210) 8.8 / 3.8
POWER FORWARD Zach Smith (6-8/215) 9.9 / 7.2
CENTER Matthew Temple (6-9/260) 3.6 / 1.9
SIXTH MAN Aaron Ross (6-8/225) 10.7 / 4.6
SEVENTH MAN Devaugntah Williams (6-4/205) 10.4 / 3.2
EIGHTH MAN Devon Thomas (6-0/170) 2.6 / 1.3*
POINT GUARD Barry Brown (6-3/195) 9.1 / 1.6*
SHOOTING GUARD Justin Edwards (6-4/200) 12.1 / 5.7*
SMALL FORWARD Wesley Iwundu (6-7/210) 11.9 / 4.6
POWER FORWARD Dean Wade (6-8/225) 9.7 / 5.1
CENTER D.J. Johnson (6-9/250) 8.8 / 5.2
SIXTH MAN Carlbe Ervin II (6-3/205) 3.2 / 1.9
SEVENTH MAN Stephen Hurt (6-11/265) 6.5 / 4.7
EIGHTH MAN Austin Budke (6-6/220) 2.5 / 2.2

* Assists.

1. KenPom has Kansas State a lot closer to Texas Tech than you might think as they are 43rd overall, 122nd in adjusted offense and 13th in adjusted defense. That’s a nasty split. Texas Tech on the other hand is holding steady at 37th overall, 31st in adjusted offense and 75th in adjusted defense. That’s starting to be a worrisome split as well.

2. Of all of the crazy things that have happened, Kansas State did upset Oklahoma, at home, but then proceeded to lose to Baylor, at Oklahoma State (a TCU win right here) and then lost to Kansas, Texas and Iowa State with another win versus TCU. Some of those were hard-luck losses. A 3 point loss to Oklahoma State. A 1 point loss to Texas. They were close.

3. It all comes down to this. Well, maybe not really, but it is a very important game. Both teams last year, Oklahoma State and Texas, were both 8-10 in conference play last year and made it into the Big Dance. A 9th win for Texas Tech would seemingly all but assure an invite to the NCAA Tournament, regardless of what happens in the Big 12 Tournament. And Texas Tech’s draw in the Big 12 Tournament is TCU, which has been proven to be a very tough out for Texas Tech (we can’t keep up with their guards).

4. If all things go according to plan, Norense Odiase will play today. This would really help the defense, I think, and it would be nice to have a scoring option back on the floor as well as a space-eater.

5. A huge shout-out and thank you to the two seniors, Toddrick Gotcher and Devaugntah Williams. Gotcher is one of my top five Red Raiders of all time, not because of his basketball talent, but because he showed student athletes how you use that education that’s been given to you. You graduate early, you get two masters degrees. You intern with the athletic department. You learn from those that are doing it right now. He used it up. Couldn’t be prouder of the way that he soaked it all in and hopefully set his life even further down the track than it already was. And also a huge congrats to Williams, who had a rough upbringing, persevered and is playing Division I basketball at a Power Five conference. It’s never for JUCO guys to get this done, or it’s more difficult to pull yourself up, but he did it. Congrats to both men.

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