First place in the Big 12 is on the line during the Dillons Sunflower Showdown for the first time since January 30th, 2008. Of course, that’s a night K-State fans will never forget as Michael Beasley & Bill Walker knocked off then #2 Kansas 84-75 to break the streak at Bramlage Coliseum.
Both the Wildcats and Jayhawks are 4-0 in the Big 12 in Tuesday night’s matchup, and both teams are on long winning streaks. Someone’s bubble will burst as #11 K-State has won eight straight games, while #3 KU has bagged 15 victories in a row. The Cats earned a road triumph last week at TCU followed by a win against Oklahoma and Lon Kruger, who was previously unbeaten in the Big 12. The road meanwhile has been bumpy as of late for the Jayhawks, who needed a banked-in three pointer at the end of regular to beat Iowa State at Allen Fieldhouse on January 9th, and a rally from 11 points down to beat Big 12 winless Texas.
The game also features a matchup of two of the league’s best guards with K-State’s Rodney McGruder and KU’s Ben McLemore. McGruder earned his fourth Big 12 player of the week nod this season with a pair of 20-point efforts last week against the Horned Frogs and Sooners. He’s third in the Big 12 at 15.5 points per game, and leads the league in scoring during Big 12 games at 21.3 points a night. McLemore, a redshirt freshman, is second in the Big 12 to Baylor’s Pierre Jackson with an average of 16.6 points, and has mentioned by some as a national player-of-the-year candidate. The key may be in the paint with K-State’s bigs led by Thomas Gipson and Jordan Henriquez as they look to slow down KU big man Jeff Withey.
The Sunflower Showdown tips off on Tuesday night at 7:00pm at Bramlage Coliseum. Powercat Gameday starts at 5:00 on SportsRadio 1350 KMAN and 101.5 K-Rock from Kite’s Grille & Bar in Aggieville.
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