It was a slow week in the Big 12 last week, as all 10 favorites won and only three games were competitive late in the second half. There should be more excitement this week, however, as Bruce Weber has his Wildcats climbing in the national polls to #11 as Tuesday’s big match-up with #3 Kansas draws near. The winner will have sole possession of first place. As the double-round robin schedule starts to take effect, we should see more separation in the middle of the conference this week as teams are make their rounds. As of now, five teams are within a game of first place. Here’s where we stand heading into Week 11:
1) Kansas (16-1, 4-0 Big 12)
Previous Ranking: 1
Last Week: W 61-44 vs Baylor, W 64-59 at Texas
This Week: Tuesday at Kansas State, 7:00 PM CST, Saturday vs Oklahoma, 3:00 PM
- Rundown: Kansas had one of the most dominant defensive performances in its win against Baylor last Monday, holding the Bears to 23.2% shooting. But the offense has struggled lately. The Jayhawks shot 37.7% against Baylor (3-of-14 from three-point range) and 39.2% against Texas (3-of-11 from deep).
- Noteworthy Stat: Jeff Withey’s 78 blocks more than double the 36 of Baylor’s Cory Jefferson, who sits in second place. Withey also leads the country with 3.3 blocks per foul.
2) Kansas State (15-2, 4-0 Big 12)
Previous Ranking: 2
Last Week: W 67-54 at TCU, W 69-60 vs Oklahoma
This Week: Tuesday vs Kansas, 7:00 PM, Saturday at Iowa State, 12:45 PM
- Rundown: We will know a lot more about Kansas State in a week. With a home game against Kansas on Tuesday and a tough road trip to Iowa State on Saturday, they have the chance to claim first place in the conference and silence any critics. They could also fall back into the middle of the pack with the cluster of teams behind the Jayhawks.
- Noteworthy Stat: Junior guard Will Spradling leads the Big 12 with a 3:1 Assist to Turnover ratio. He has committed only three turnovers in the last five games.