Deja Vu? ..NCAA Selection Committee

As the Cats open up Conference Play on Jan. 12th at Oklahoma, these Cats look to be in the precariously same position of 10-4 again, the very same record as last year's Cats and looking to Impress the NCAA Selection Committee.

It's a good bet that Kansas State will open Big 12 Conference play on Jan. 12 at Oklahoma in exactly the same position as a year ago.

The Wildcats are 9-4, and should go to 10-4 on Monday when Savannah State comes to Bramlage Coliseum for the non-conference finale.

And once again, K-State will have little to show from the non-league season that will impress the NCAA Selection Committee when at-large invitations are handed out in mid-March.

A year ago, a 10-4 K-State went on to win 10 Big 12 games, another mid-year non-league game against Chicago State, and yet another in the Big 12 Postseason Tournament, but it still wasn't enough to get into the NCAA's "Dance."

Coming off Monday's embarrassing 103-77 loss to Xavier, K-State, now No. 84 in the RPI listing, is without one of those "quality wins."

The Wildcats are 0-2 against teams ranked No. 1 to No. 50 (losses to No. 23 George Mason and No. 26 Xavier), and 1-2 against teams ranked No. 51 to No. 100 (losses to No. 58 Oregon and No. 69 Notre Dame, and a win over No. 66 California … at the time of the game).

Also potentially hurting the Wildcats is the fact that they have yet to score a road victory. All six games outside of Bramlage Coliseum this year have been played on neutral courts.

Coach Frank Martin has said, "When we practice, it has nothing to do with Dec. 29 or Dec. 31, but only to gradually progress so we can play our best basketball in March." Last year, however, that March play was in the NIT and not the NCAA.

After Monday's 26-point loss, K-State was stinging. Martin simply said, "That game is over." But Bill Walker, who scored a career-high of 31, admitted, "The way we lost hurts more than anything."

It was a night when even the best Kansas State had to offer was silenced. Michael Beasley scored five points, 20 below his season norm, and he didn't score from the field until the final 35 seconds.

Not only that, but the Wildcats' prideful defense seemingly didn't put up a hand. Xavier hit 61 percent from the field with seven Musketeers ending up with at least 10 points.

On the plus side of the ledger is the fact that last year the Big 12 Conference was ranked sixth in the RPI listing.

This season, the Big 12 is No. 2, which will help KSU's strength of schedule, which is now only No. 66.


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