6 p.m. Friday at the Sprint Center
KMCI (Ch. 38); KCSP (610 AM)
•ABOUT KANSAS (24-8):
Kansas and Iowa State have played some entertaining games during the last two seasons, and KU coach Bill Self expects another on Friday. “I think this one could be one of those epic-type matchups,” Self said. The Jayhawks should have some momentum after beating Oklahoma State, proving they could beat an NCAA Tournament team without center Joel Embiid. But Iowa State poses another test. Embiid had 16 points, nine rebounds and five blocks in a victory in Ames. He added 14 points and 11 rebounds against Iowa State at Allen Fieldhouse. In short: Embiid was a difference-maker. But if there’s a positive, Self says, it’s that Kansas’ other big men should be able to match up better with Iowa State defensively. The Cyclones will try to stretch the floor, and forwards such as Jamari Traylor are used to those kind of matchups.
•ABOUT IOWA STATE (24-7):
After beating Kansas State on Thursday, Iowa State gets another shot at Kansas. The Cyclones are 0-2 against the Jayhawks this season after going 0-3 against KU last season. The third loss came here, an 88-73 loss in the semifinals. Senior forward Melvin Ejim, who was selected Big 12 player of the year by the coaches and the AP, can back up that distinction with a strong game against Kansas and Andrew Wiggins, his main competition for the award. If there’s one difference in Iowa State in March, it’s the continued development of freshman guard Monte Morris, who had 10 assists and one turnover against K-State. Morris has 120 assists and just 21 turnovers on the season.
Kansas is 10-5 all-time in Big 12 semifinals. If the Jayhawks beat Iowa State, they can keep their name in the discussion for a No. 1 NCAA seed.