clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

TCU Basketball Preview: Kansas State Wildcats

The Horned Frogs host Kansas State tonight looking to start the program's first ever Big 12 winning streak and avenge an early January loss to the Wildcats.

Scott Sewell-USA TODAY Sports

Game Time: 7:00pm CDT | Location: Wilkerson-Greines Activity Center
TV: FOX Sports Southwest | Series: KSU leads 8-2 | Game Line: TCU -3.5

TCU and Kansas State will square off tonight in a game featuring two programs that are looking to wrap up their seasons on a high note. The Frogs enter the game fresh off an upset of #21 Oklahoma State on Saturday. The win put the Frogs at 2-10 in Big 12 play and 15-10 overall. With another win tonight, the Frogs could capture the program's first ever Big 12 winning streak.

Similarly, the Wildcats enter the game having upset another team from the Sooner State in their most recent outing. On Saturday, Kansas State beat Oklahoma 59-56 to sweep the season series with the Sooners. The win moved the ‘Cats to 6-7 in Big 12 play and 13-13 overall. The Wildcats are tied with the Texas Longhorns for 7th place in the Big 12 and are looking to avoid finishing the season with a losing record for the first time in 13 seasons.

Marcus Foster and Nino Williams led the charge for the Wildcats on Saturday, much like they did in the first matchup with the Frogs in early January. The duo combined to score 27 of Kansas State's 59 points over the weekend, while Williams also pulled down a team-leading eight rebounds. On the season, Foster and Williams carry the load for the Wildcats, averaging 14.0 and 11.6 points per game respectively. Thomas Gipson isn't far behind, adding another 11.0 points per game.

Marcus Foster could potentially return to the Kansas State lineup tonight after being suspended for three games due to an unspecified violation of team rules. Saturday's contest against the Sooners marked Foster's return to game action, as he recorded 25 minutes of playing time off the bench. One major key for the Frogs tonight will be whether or not they can contain Foster's scoring ability. In the first meeting, Foster was removed from the starting lineup because of recent struggles and attitude issues, but he came off the bench to lead all scorers with 23 points.

Keeping Williams and Gipson off the boards will be another key for the Frogs tonight. The two combine to average nearly 10 rebounds per game, thanks in part to Williams' nine and Gipson's seven boards in the first game against TCU. Against Oklahoma State this weekend, the Frogs out-rebounded the Cowboys 30-25, which played a role in their upset win. For TCU to win again tonight, the Frogs will need a strong performance from the big men inside on the boards.

TCU will likely enter tonight's game with an elevated level of confidence after finally beating a ranked opponent at home. It will be important for the Frogs to play with the same level of intensity and physicality that they used to shut down the Pokes. A big key will be whether or not the Frogs are able to jump out to an early lead. If TCU can dictate the pace of play early and open up a gap against the Wildcats, it will be difficult for this Kansas State team that struggles on the offensive end to play catch-up.

TCU Projected Starters

Kansas State Projected Starters

G

Kyan Anderson

13.1 ppg, 4.1 apg

G

Nigel Johnson

4.5 ppg, 1.8 apg

G

Trey Zeigler

8.8 ppg, 4.1 rpg

G

Justin Edwards

6.4 ppg, 3.5 rpg

F

Kenrich Williams

8.5 ppg, 6.8 rpg

F

Wesley Iwundu

5.7 ppg, 3.4 rpg

F

Chris Washburn

6.4 ppg, 5.9 rpg

F

Nino Williams

11.6 ppg, 5.0 rpg

C

Karviar Shephed

6.3 ppg, 5.7 rpg

F

Thomas Gipson

11.0 ppg, 4.8 rpg

Here are some other game notes, as provided by GoFrogs.com:

  • TCU was receiving votes earlier this month in the USA Today Coaches Poll.
  • The last time TCU was receiving votes in February came during the 1998-99 campaign.
  • TCU is 29-5 when leading at the half under head coach Trent Johnson.
  • TCU has now held 28 opponents to 59 points or less under Trent Johnson.
  • TCU has out-rebounded its opposition 16 times this season.
  • TCU has already bettered its win total from a year ago and 2011-12.
  • TCU played its seventh ranked opponent in eight games this past Saturday vs. Oklahoma State.
  • Kyan Anderson is No. 7 all-time in scoring in program history with 1,510 points.
  • Anderson needs only three more points to move past TCU great Kurt Thomas in points for a career.
  • Anderson moved into No. 1 all-time in program history in steals this past Saturday with 164.
  • Kenrich Williams has scored in double-figures in 12 of the 25 games this season.
  • Trey Zeigler has scored in doube-figures in seven Big 12 games this year.