Here are projected starters with TV and radio information for the No. 18 Kansas State Wildcats vs. the No. 23 Iowa State Cyclones basketball game on Saturday at Bramlage Coliseum.
When/where: 3 p.m., Saturday, Bramlage Coliseum, Manhattan
TV/radio: ESPN2, KQAM (1480 AM) in Wichita, KCSP (610 AM) in Kansas City
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About No. 23 Iowa State (18-6, 7-4 Big 12): The Cyclones were starting to emerge as the Wildcats’ top competition in the race for a Big 12 championship until they lost at home to TCU 92-83 last week. Iowa State now needs to beat K-State on the road to stay in the title picture. It also has ground to make up because of a 58-57 home loss to the Wildcats earlier this season. K-State held Marial Shayok to nine points in that game and rallied in the final moments to win. Iowa State is known for its three-point shooting, but it is also tearing things up from close range this season. The Cyclones are shooting 56.2 percent inside the arc.
About No. 18 Kansas State (19-5, 9-2 Big 12): The Wildcats are in control of the Big 12 championship race, having won nine consecutive conference games. They can give themselves an even bigger cushion with a win over Iowa State. K-State will once again be without key reserve Cartier Diarra in this game. He is out indefinitely with an injured hand. The Wildcats won without him in their last game against Texas, thanks to all five starters reaching double figures. Mike McGuirl (five points) was the only K-State player to score off the bench. Barry Brown scored a game-high 23 points against Iowa State at Hilton Coliseum. Dean Wade was limited to two points in 22 minutes.
Prediction: This is, without a doubt, K-State’s most difficult remaining home game. The Wildcats needed Iowa State to miss free throws to rally for a 58-57 win at Hilton Coliseum earlier this season, and the Cyclones will be motivated to get revenge and stay in the Big 12 championship race. If Iowa State brings its A-game, it can beat anyone. But K-State is excellent at making teams play well below their capabilities. K-State will win with a solid defensive effort at home.
K-State 72, Iowa State 69.