K-State: Bruce Weber [Wisconsin-Milwaukee ‘78]
Record at K-State: 177-133/10th Year
Career Record: 490-288/24th Year
vs. McNeese State: 0-0 [0-0 at K-State]
McNeese State: John Aiken [Southern Maine ‘08]
Record at McNeese State: 3-8/1st Year
Career Record: 33-41/3rd Year
vs. K-State: 0-0 [0-0 at McNeese State]
Overall: First meeting
Current Streak: n/a
In Manhattan: First meeting
At Bramlage Coliseum: First meeting
Last Meeting: n/a
Weber vs. Aiken: First meeting
PROJECTED STARTING LINEUP
Kansas State (7-3)
G: #1 Markquis Nowell
G: #13 Mark Smith
G: #24 Nijel Pack
F: #25 Ismael [Ish] Massoud
F: #20 Kaosi Ezeagu
McNeese State (3-8)
G: #0 Trae English
G: #15 Zach Scott
F: #5 Myles Lewis
F: #12 Kellon Taylor
C: #35 Brendan Medley-Bacon
K-STATE HOSTS McNEESE STATE BEFORE HOLIDAY BREAK
- Kansas State (7-3) makes a quick turnaround on Tuesday night, as the Wildcats play host to first-time opponent and Southland Conference foe McNeese State (3-8) at 7 p.m., CT at Bramlage Coliseum. It will be K-State’s second game in a 3-day span after knocking off Nebraska, 67-58, on Sunday night before a sold-out crowd at Pinnacle Bank Arena.
- The Wildcats have now won 5 of their last 6 games with their only loss in that span coming by 1-point to Marquette on Dec. 8, while they have started the year with consecutive road victories (Wichita State and Nebraska) for the first time since the 2017-18 season. They held both the Shockers and Cornhuskers to less than 60 points in the victories.
- K-State boasts a 5-1 record at Bramlage Coliseum this season, averaging 74.3 points in those contests on 49.1 percent shooting, including 40.9 percent from 3-point range, while holding opponents to 55.7 points on 37.3 percent shooting.
- K-State looks to wrap up the calendar year 2021 on a winning note with non-conference home games against McNeese State (3-8) and Morgan State (4-7) before opening Big 12 play at Oklahoma (9-2) on New Year’s Day. The team needs just 2 wins to equal its entire win total (9) from 2020-21.
- The Wildcats’ 3 losses to No. 13/12 Arkansas (64-72), No. 14/15 Illinois (64-72) and Marquette (63-64) have come by a combined 17 points.
- K-State turned to its reliable defense to grind out the 67-58 win at Nebraska on Sunday night, holding the Cornhuskers to 17 points under their scoring average in the first meeting with their old conference rival in more than a decade. The Wildcats held the Huskers to their second-fewest points of the season and their second-lowest field goal percentage (32.8 percent / 19-of-58). They started the game 5-of-10 from 3-point range before missing their final 18 attempts from long range, including all 11 in the second half.
- K-State struggled to find consistency on offense, finishing at 39 percent (23-of-59) from the field, including 23.1 percent (6-of-26) from 3-point range. However, the Wildcats did take advantage of their opportunities in the paint, scoring 34 points, while getting 23 points from its bench and outscoring the Huskers, 22-11, in points off turnovers. The team also made sure to take care of their chances at the free throw line, converting on 15 of 18 attempts.
- K-State also got a big lift from sophomore Nijel Pack, who returned to the starting lineup against Nebraska (12/19/21) after coming off the bench against Green Bay (12/12/21). Pack, who missed consecutive games against Wichita State (12/5/21) and Marquette (12/8/21), posted a team-high 15 points in the victory to go with a career-high 8 rebounds and a season-tying 5 assists and 2 steals in a season-best 34 minutes of action. Pack has now scored in double figures in 7 of his 8 games played this season, as he leads the Wildcats in scoring (14.5 ppg.), double-digit scoring games (7) and 3-point field goals (21).
- K-State continue to hang its hat on defense, where the team ranks among the top-30 in 4 defensive categories, including first in 3-point field goal percentage defense (23.8), 18th in defensive rebounds (29.5), 20th in field goal percentage defense (37.8) and 26th in scoring defense (59.5). The Wildcats have held 5 of 10 opponents under 60 points, including back-to-back opponents (North Dakota and UAlbany) to under 50 points for the first time since December 2015. They are also averaging 17.8 points per game off opponent turnovers.
- McNeese State enters Tuesday’s game with a 3-8 record after having dropped its last 5 contests (Samford, Seattle, Wyoming, Louisiana and UTEP) with 4 of those coming on the road. The Cowboys are averaging 71.7 points per game on 43.1 percent shooting, including 28.6 percent from 3-point range, and have a pair of double-digit scorers in forward Myles Lewis (10.7 ppg.) and center Brendan Medley-Bacon (10.1 ppg.) under first-year head coach John Aiken.
- This will be the first meeting between K-State and McNeese State and just the fourth-ever against a Southland Conference foe after victories over Northwestern State and New Orleans in 1999 and Texas A&M-Corpus Christi in 2003.