The Jayhawks (18-3, 7-1 Big 12) have won four straight games and nine of their last 10 while coming off a 68-57 home victory over Kansas State Saturday.
SCOUTING Iowa STATE
ISU (16-4, 6-2) has won two straight and four of its last five games after its 83-66 home win against TCU on Saturday. Iowa State leads the nation in assists at 17.8 per game, while pacing the Big 12 in scoring at 80.3 points per game and boasting a +11.8 scoring margin (No. 2 in Big 12).
Iowa State also leads the league with a 49.1 field goal percentage, a 1.6 assist-to-turnover ratio and 7.6 three-point field goals made per game. ISU averages 6.1 steals and 3.9 blocks per contest, while averaging 36.2 rebounds per game with a +2.1 rebound margin.
Junior forward Georges Niang leads the attack with 15.2 points per game (No. 4 in Big 12). He also averages 5.4 rebounds and ranks second on the team with 69 assists. Senior guard Bryce Dejean-Jones is next in scoring (12.8 ppg, team-high 5.8 rpg), followed by junior guard Naz Long (11.7 ppg, No. 3 in Big 12 with 2.6 threes made per game), sophomore guard Monte’ Morris (11.1 ppg, Big 12-best 5.7 apg and 5.1 assist-to-turnover ratio), senior forward Dustin Hogue (11.1 ppg, Big 12-leading 59.0 field goal percentage) and redshirt junior forward Jameel McCay (9.4 ppg, team-high 24 blocks in just 11 games).
ISU is coached by Fred Hoiberg, who is 106-51 in his fifth season as a head coach, all at Iowa State.
KU coach Bill Self knows it will take a great effort to beat the Cyclones after ISU knocked off the Jayhawks, 86-81, in Ames on Jan. 17. Iowa State shot 50.8 percent from the field that game and buried KU in transition, outscoring Kansas 21 to 10 on fastbreak points.
“Our guys will be jacked and ready,” Self said. “They made us look foolish many possessions up in Ames, and even though it was a two-possession game late, we didn’t feel like we put our best foot forward there. And to be honest with you, they could probably play better too, so it will be two good teams play. They are extremely hard to guard, (ISU) and OU I think are head and shoulders offensively better than other teams in our league because they can score from all five spots. Certainly, we’re going to have to play better, but then again, I like our chances if we play with great energy and that’s something we certainly have to do.”
Self is concerned that ISU doesn’t beat KU in the transition game again.
“We’ll do something to make sure we give ourselves an opportunity to play them five against five as opposed to three against two, two against one,” Self said.
“WE OWE THEM”
Freshman guard Kelly Oubre Jr. is certainly excited to get another shot at Iowa State.
“They beat us (last time). We could be undefeated (in Big 12) right now, so we owe them one,” Oubre said.
“Last Iowa State game, they kind of exposed us a little bit,” he added. “We didn’t do the little things, we didn’t get back on defense and they took advantage of it. It’s going to be a great game on Monday, a great, fun environment.”
WINNING IN THE PHOG
KU’s current 19-game winning streak in Allen Fieldhouse is tied with Iowa State's 19-game home-court winning streak at Hilton Coliseum. Both are tied for eighth on the active NCAA Division I list as of Jan. 31. KU's 19-straight victories at the fieldhouse are the 14th longest in school history and the 10th-longest in the fieldhouse ever.
Kansas leads the all-time series with Iowa State, 175-61, dating back to 1908. KU has won five of the last seven meetings and 18 of the last 21 matchups. However, ISU has won two straight with an 86-81 win in Ames on Jan. 17 and a 93-84 victory in the semifinals of the 2014 Big 12 Championship at Sprint Center in Kansas City. Those two straight Iowa State wins are the first consecutive victories in the series for the Cyclones since they won five straight against KU from 1999 to 2001.
Kansas is 90-15 against ISU in games played in Lawrence, including 49-9 in Allen Fieldhouse. KU has won the last nine meetings in the Phog beginning in 2006.
Self is 21-5 all time versus Iowa State, including 20-5 while at KU. Hoiberg is 3-8 all time against KU. Since Hoiberg's arrival in Ames, five of the last nine meetings have been decided by nine points or less with two of those in overtime.