Kansas State Men's Basketball 2014 NCAA Tournament Capsule

Kansas State Wildcats
Big 12 (20-12, 10-8)


After a slow start, which saw losses to Northern Colorado, Charlotte and Georgetown, Kansas State started to come around and picked up some very nice wins. As with every team but Kansas, although the Wildcats did beat their rival at home, the tough Big 12 caused some problems on the road. Coach Bruce Weber rolled with the punches and always had his squad ready to rebound.

Big Wins: 12/21 Gonzaga (72-62), 1/11 at Kansas (60-86), 1/25 at Iowa State (75-81)
Bad Losses: 11/8 Northern Colorado (58-60), 11/21 vs Charlotte (61-68), 2/1 at West Virginia (71-81)
Coach: Bruce Weber (2 seasons at Kansas State)

Why They Can Surprise:
Kansas State is in the NCAA Tournament because of their defense. The opposition scores just 64.9 points against them and shoots a mere 40.5 percent from the floor. Most impressive is their three-point defense, which is 28.8 percent and sixth in the nation. Once the offense came around in December, the Wildcats were tough to beat. And the offense came around in part due to the development of freshman Marcus Foster. He is now the team’s go-to-scorer and is hardly a freshman anymore. Shane Southwell and Will Spradling can also hit big shots from the perimeter. But perhaps what the guards do best is pass the ball. Foster, Southwell and Spradling are not true point guards, but they share the ball amazingly well and the team as a whole dishes out 15.5 assists per contest, which is impressive for a team that does not want to get up and down the floor and scores just 69.2 points per game.

Why They Can Disappoint:
Does this team have enough size and toughness? Certainly they have been tested in the Big 12, but March is a whole different ball game. Veteran 6-7 forward Thomas Gipson does not lack in toughness and is easily K-State’s top rebounder and interior scoring threat. Wesley Iwundu is a lanky wing and power forward Nino Williams is just 6-5. Iwundu and Williams have done well and Gipson is a force in the paint, but his team is undersized. Sophomore D.J. Johnson has done a good job spelling Gipson, yet his lack of an offensive game does limit his minutes.

Probable Starters:
Will Spradling, Senior, Guard, 7.8 ppg, 2.9 apg
Marcus Foster, Freshman, Guard, 15.6 ppg, 2.5 apg
Wesley Iwundu, Freshman, Forward, 6.7 ppg, 1.8 apg
Nino Williams, Junior, Forward, 6.4 ppg, 3.5 rpg
Thomas Gipson, Junior, Forward, 11.8 ppg, 6.5 rpg

Key Roleplayers:
D.J. Johnson, Sophomore, Forward, 3.5 ppg, 3.6 rpg
Nigel Johnson, Freshman, Guard, 4.3 ppg, 1.7 apg
Omari Lawrence, Senior, Guard, 3.2 ppg
Shane Southwell, Senior, Guard, 9.8 ppg, 2.8 apg, 1.1 bpg

By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense:  69.2 (224th in nation, 8th in conference)
Scoring Defense: 64.9 (53, 1)
Field-Goal Percentage: 43.2 (225, 8)
Field-Goal Defense: 40.5 (42, 3)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 6.0 (191, 6)
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 33.0 (223, 7)
Free-Throw Percentage: 65.6 (305, 10)
Rebound Margin: 1.7 (139, 5)
Assists Per Game: 15.5 (30, 2)
Turnovers Per Game: 12.3 (170, 8)

Recent Postseason Appearances:
2013    NCAA    Second Round loss to LaSalle
2012    NCAA    Second Round win over Southern Mississippi
2012    NCAA    Third Round loss to Syracuse
2011    NCAA    Round of 64 win over Utah State
2011    NCAA    Round of 32 loss to Wisconsin
2010    NCAA    Round of 64 win over North Texas
2010    NCAA    Round of 32 win over BYU
2010    NCAA    Regional Semifinal win over Xavier
2010    NCAA    Regional Final loss to Butler
2009    NIT        First Round win over Illinois State
2009    NIT        Second Round loss to San Diego State
2008    NCAA    Round of 64 win over USC
2008    NCAA    Round of 32 loss to Wisconsin
2007    NIT        First Round win over Vermont
2007    NIT        Second Round loss to DePaul

*all team stats through 3/9


See All Men’s Basketball Postseason Capsules