Pullen Pulling His Own Weight

Quick, name the Wildcat of the future in Kansas State's basketball program. Michael Beasley will likely be one-and-done, so scratch that name. Bill Walker may also have the opportunity to be a short-timer at K-State. But Jacob Pullen just might be the MVP of the next three years for the Wildcats as a fixture at point guard.

A product out of Maywood, Ill., Pullen has not only been the team-leader in assist, but also a third twin-figure scorer.

A lot has been said of the basketball talents of Jacob Pullen, but now add this to the scouting report of Kansas State's freshman point guard.

Quick learner.

Pullen was riding a high after K-State's 84-75 victory over No. 2-ranked Kansas. Arguably, Pullen was the best guard on the floor that night with 20 points and four rebounds.

That was on a Wednesday night.

On the following Saturday in Columbia, Mo., Pullen was allowed to play just eight minutes in a 77-74 loss to the Missouri Tigers.

Jacob did not prepare himself to play, said KSU coach Frank Martin on reducing Pullen's number of minutes in such a pivotal game. I've said from day-one that they guys who prepare the best are the ones who are going to play. I didn't think he was prepared to help us win on that day.

Coach didn't think I practiced right,? Pullen summarized.

Since that game at MU, Pullen has returned to score 11 points with 8 rebounds and 1 assist against Nebraska, and 17 points, 1 rebound and 2 assists against Oklahoma State.

For the most part, the 18-year-old Pullen has been prepared to play. In Big 12 games only, his 29 assists to 10 turnovers ranks second in the league only to Kansas' Mario Chalmers in assist-to-turnover ratio. Chalmers is at 3.61 and Pullen is 2.90.

Pullen's 3.63 assists per game ranks only behind D.J. Augustin of Texas (5.25), Chalmers (5.22) and Nebraska's Cookie Miller (3.75).

For the total season, Pullen's 10.0 scoring average ranks only behind Michael Beasley and Bill Walker for the Wildcats. And while shooting under 30 percent from 3-point range, his 25 treys are tied for first on the team with Walker.

Stepping in as a freshman in what coaches call the most difficult position to play, assistant coach Brad Underwood said of Pullen's play,

He's really stepped in and met all the challenges. He's used to being a scoring guard, but here he's had to learn how to be more of a playmaker. He's survived a lot.

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