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Preview // K-State Begins 2-Game Road Swing at WVU Tuesday

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MANHATTAN, Kan. (KStateSports.com) –

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GAME 15
KANSAS STATE (11-3, 1-0 Big 12) at WEST VIRGINIA (5-9, 0-1 Big 12)
Tuesday, January 8, 2024 >> 6:02 p.m. CT >> WVU Coliseum (14,000) >> Morgantown, W.Va.

TELEVISION
Big 12 Now / WatchESPN (link here)

  • Joel Godett (play-by-play)
  • Tim Welsh (analyst)
  • Kevin Kremer (producer)


RADIO
K-State Sports Network
Flagships: // KMAN 1350 & WIBW 580
Satellite Radio: Ch. 386
Online: Varsity Network [free] / www.kstatesports.com/watch [free]

  • Wyatt Thompson (play-by-play)
  • Stan Weber (analyst)


LIVE STATS
kstatesports.com
kstate.statbroadcast.com

COACHES
K-State: Jerome Tang [Charter Oak State College ’07] Record at K-State: 37-13/Second Year
Career Record: 39-13*/Second Year
vs. West Virginia: 1-1 [0-1 on the road]

West Virginia: Josh Eilert [Kansas State ’04, ’07] Record at WVU: 5-9/1st Year
Career Record: 5-9/1st Year
vs. K-State: 0-0 [0-0 at home]

PROBABLE STARTERS
K-State (11-3, 1-0 Big 12)
G: #2 Tylor Perry
G: #5 Cam Carter
W: #24 Arthur Kaluma
W: #1 David N’Guessan
C: #15 Will McNair Jr.

West Virginia (5-9, 0-1 Big 12)
G: #3 Kerr Kriisa
G: #1 Noah Farrakhan
G: #21 RaeQuan Battle
F: #11 Quinn Slazinski
F: #13 Akok Akok

SERIES HISTORY
Overall: West Virginia leads 16-10
Big 12 Era: West Virginia leads 15-9 [9-2 at home] On the Road: West Virginia leads 9-3
Active Streak: West Virginia, 1
First Meeting: W, 49-44 [12/12/1949 in Morgantown] Last Meeting: L, 89-81 [3/4/2023 in Morgantown] Jerome Tang vs. Josh Eilert: First meeting

K-STATE BEGINS 2-GAME ROAD TRIP AT WEST VIRGINIA TUESDAY
Kansas State (11-3, 1-0 Big 12) begins a 2-game road swing on Tuesday, as the Wildcats visit West Virginia (5-9, 0-1 Big 12) and former player and graduate assistant Josh Eilert for a 6 p.m., CT tipoff at the WVU Coliseum. The matchup will be the first of 2 regular-season meetings between the schools, as they have met home-and-home every year since the 2012-13 season.

Eilert, who replaced the legendary Bob Huggins as interim head coach on June 24, was both a player (2002-04) and a graduate assistant (2006-07) at K-State. The native of Osborne, Kan., he played in 8 games for the Wildcats from 2002-04 before joining the coaching staff as a graduate assistant during Huggins’ lone season in Manhattan in 2006-07.

The Mountaineers have won 15 of 24 meetings in the Big 12 era, including a 9-2 mark at home. They have won the last 4 matchups at the WVU Coliseum, including an 89-81 victory in the last season’s regular-season finale on March 4, 2023. The last Wildcat win in Morgantown came in a 65-51 victory on Feb. 18, 2019. The other win came in the first matchup in 2013.

KEY STORYLINES

  • K-State enters Tuesday’s game with 8 wins in its last 9 outings, including a 5-game winning streak from Nov. 22 to Dec. 9. Among those 8 wins are 3 Quad 2 victories (Villanova, Providence and LSU), while the 3 losses have come to Quad 1 (Miami) and Quad 2 (Nebraska and USC) teams. The Wildcats are 5-7 in true road games under Jerome Tang, including 1-0 this season.
  • K-State has continued to make strides on the defensive end after allowing 75 points or more 4 times in the first 9 games. In the last 5 games, the Wildcats have allowed just 57.8 points on 37.4 percent (113-of-302) shooting, including 29.9 percent (32-of-107) from 3-point range. The team has 60 points or less 4 times in that span, including a season-low 52 points to UCF on 33.8 percent shooting, including 23.8 percent from 3-point range. It was the fewest points allowed to a Big 12 foe under Jerome Tang and the fewest in a Big 12 opener since 2003.
  • The Wildcats have a strong scoring trio of junior Cam Carter (16.2 ppg.), senior Tylor Perry (15.7 ppg.) and junior Arthur Kaluma (15.1 ppg.), who are responsible for 62 percent of the team’s scoring (47 out of 75.9 ppg.). K-State is the only Big 12 member to have 3 players rank in the league’s top-20 in scoring, as Carter ranks seventh, Perry ninth and Kaluma 13th. The trio has been even more impressive in the 11 wins, averaging 48.1 points per game.
  • Rebounding has been a strength for the Wildcats, as they rank in the top-40 nationally in 2 rebounding categories, including 14th in offensive rebounds (14.29) and 32nd in rebounding/ game (40.86). The team held a 40-36 advantage on the glass over another strong rebounding team in UCF, as senior David N’Guessan collected a career-best 14 boards in the win.
  • Thanks to a Big 12-leading four overtime games, K-State has 3 players who rank in the Big 12’s top-4 in minutes played, including league leader Cam Carter (36.12 mpg.). Carter is followed by senior Tylor Perry (36.11 mpg./2nd) and junior Arthur Kaluma (35.0 mpg./4th).


A K-STATE WIN WOULD…

  • Snap a 4-game losing streak to WVU in Morgantown.
  • Give it a 2-0 start to Big 12 play for the second straight year.
  • Move Jerome Tang to 6-7 in true road games in his tenure.
  • Give the Wildcats their second true road win of the season.
  • Give Tang his 40th win as a head coach in his career.


NOTES ON WEST VIRGINIA (5-9, 0-1 Big 12)

  • Under interim head coach Josh Eilert, West Virginia is off to a 5-9 start, including an 0-1 mark in Big 12 play after an 89-55 loss at No. 3/3 Houston on Saturday. The Mountaineers have lost 4 of their last 5 games, including a one-point loss to Radford and an overtime setback to Ohio State. The team is 5-4 at home this season.
  • West Virginia is averaging 67.4 points on 40.4 percent shooting, including 29.3 percent from 3-point range, with 37.5 rebounds, 12.6 assists, 3.8 steals and 3.9 blocks per game, while allowing 70.9 points on 41.6 percent shooting, including 33.7 percent from 3-point range. The Mountaineers are connecting on 73 percent from the free throw line.
  • West Virginia has not had a full complement of players this season, as senior transfers Kerr Kriisa and RaeQuan Battle have played in just 5 and 4 games, respectively, due to NCAA-related issues, while fellow transfer Jesse Edwards has missed 4 games due to injury.
  • Four Mountaineers are averaging in double figures led by Battle, who is averaging 21.5 points on 43.1 percent shooting in 4 games this season. He had 27 points against K-State in the NCAA Tournament last season while playing at Montana State. Transfer Quinn Slazinski is averaging 15 points on 39.5 percent shooting, including a team-best 22 3-pointers. Edwards is averaging a near double-double with 14.8 points on 55.7 percent shooting with a team-best 8.7 rebounds per game in 10 games. Transfer Noah Farrakhan is averaging 14.2 points on 50 percent shooting.
  • West Virginia was picked ninth in the Big 12 preseason coaches poll. The Mountaineers posted a 19-15 record, including a 7-11 mark in the Big 12, in 2022-23, advancing to the second round of the NCAA Tournament. They had to replace 8 lettermen, including all 5 starters.
  • Eilert is a former player (2002-04) and graduate assistant (2006-07) at K-State. He played in 8 games as a player at K-State for then head coach Jim Wooldridge. He followed Bob Huggins to West Virginia in 2007 as director of operations before becoming an assistant coach and eventually interim head coach after the departure of Huggins this past summer.


SERIES HISTORY

  • West Virginia leads the all-time series, 16-10, which includes a 15-9 mark in the Big 12 era. The Mountaineers are 9-3 at home in the series, having won each of the last 4 meetings.
  • West Virginia has won 6 of the last 10 meetings, including a 4-game  winning streak from 2020-22.


LAST 10 MEETINGS [4-6]

DateRankResultScoreLocation
2/18/201923/–W65-51Morgantown
1/18/2020–/12W84-68Manhattan
2/1/2020–/12L57-66Morgantown
1/23/2021–/14L47-69Manhattan
2/27/2021–/10L43-65Morgantown
1/8/2022–/–L68-71Morgantown
2/14/2022–/–W78-73Manhattan
3/9/2022–/–L67-73Kansas City
12/31/2022–/24W82-76 (OT)Manhattan
3/4/202311/–L81-89Morgantown


LAST MEETING
WEST VIRGINIA 89, K-STATE 81 [March 4, 2023]

  • West Virginia used a big second-half performance to end No. 11/11 K-State’s 4-game winning streak, scoring 50 points on 57.7 percent shooting after halftime en route to an 89-81 victory in the last meeting between the schools on March 4, 2023, at the WVU Coliseum in Morgantown, W. Va.


LAST TIME OUT:
K-STATE 77, UCF 52

  • K-State held UCF to a season-low 52 points, including just 19 points in the first half on 21.6 percent shooting, as the Wildcats opened Big 12 play with a 77-52 win over the Knights on Saturday before 9,698 fans at Bramlage Coliseum.
  • K-State (11-3, 1-0 Big 12) led by as many as 35 points in the second half, as the Wildcats built upon their 16-point halftime advantage with a 25-6 run out of halftime. The Knights (9-4, 0-1 Big 12) never got closer than 23 points the rest of the way in playing their first Big 12 game.
  • The 25-point margin of victory was the largest in a Big 12 opener in more than 25 seasons since a 111-56 win over Missouri on Jan. 3, 1998, while it was the largest such margin in a Big 12 game under Jerome Tang. In addition, the 52 points were the fewest allowed in a Big 12 game under Tang and were the fewest in a Big 12 opener since No. 25 Texas Tech scored 44 on Jan. 11, 2003.
  • Four Wildcats scored in double figures led by a game-high 25 points from Tylor Perry, who scored 17 of his 25 points in the second half on 5-of-9 field goals, including 5-of-8 from 3-point range. Arthur Kaluma (14 points) and Cam Carter (12 points) and Will McNair Jr. (11 points) also registered double figures, while David N’Guessan collected a career-high 14 rebounds.
  • K-State shook off any idea of a slow start, scoring the game’s first 12 points, including the first 7 points before UCF coach Johnny Dawkins took his first timeout at 17:20 mark. The Knights got their first points in a Big 12 game on a 3-pointer by junior Darius Johnson at the 16:22 mark as part of a 7-2 run that cut the deficit in half. However, the Wildcats responded with 9 straight points to push the lead back out to double figures en route to a 16-point lead at the half.
  • Behind the sharp shooting Perry, K-State scored 25 of the first 31 points out the halftime break to push the lead to 60-25 with 12 minutes to play. Perry was responsible for 15 of the 25 points during the pivotal run, all coming from the 3-point line. UCF made a run to close to within 71-48 just before the final media timeout with less than 3 minutes remaining.
  • K-State connected on 43.1 percent (25-of-58) from the field, including 37.5 percent (9-of-24) from 3-point range, and made 18 of its 23 attempts from the free throw line. The Wildcats also held a 40-36 edge on the glass, including 13 offensive rebounds which led to 16 second-chance points. The team, which ranks top-40 in rebounding nationally, has outrebounded 10 of 14 opponents.
  • In addition to its four double-digit scorers, the Wildcats got a boost from redshirt freshman Dorian Finister, who finished with 6 points, 4 rebounds and 2 assists in a season-high 18 minutes off the bench.
  • UCF was held to more than 26 points under its season scoring average (78.6 ppg.) and 16 points under its previous season-low of 68 points against Ole Miss on Dec. 10. The Knights hit on just 33.8 percent (22-of-65) from the field, including 23.8 percent (5-of-21) from 3-point range.


POSTGAME NEWS & NOTES

  • K-State is now 56-55 all-time in conference openers dating back to Missouri Valley play in 1914, including 13-15 in the Big 12 era. The Wildcats have now won 3 of their last 4 conference openers, including the last 2 under Tang.
  • K-State is now 9-1 this season and 21-5 in the last 2 seasons when 4 or more players score in double figures.
  • Perry scored his 25 points on 7-of-13 field goals, including 6-of-11 from 3-point range, and 5-of-5 free throws to go with 5 assists, 3 steals and a rebound in 35 minutes… He scored 17 points in the second half on 5-of-9 shooting, including 5-of-8 from 3-point range… It was Perry’s 24th career 20-point game, including his team-leading 5th of the season.


NEW OFFENSE CREATING EXCITEMENT

  • K-State made the switch to the 5-out offense in the offseason to utilize its versality in talent, as the offense is structured around spacing with all 5 players required to pass, cut, screen, dribble and shoot.
  • After scoring 100 points in the exhibition play for the first time since 1993, the Wildcats eclipsed the 100-point barrier at home since 2010 and the second time under head coach Jerome Tang with a 100-56 victory over Central Arkansas on Nov. 22. The team has also scored 83 points twice (Bellarmine and No. 12/11 Miami), 91 vs. South Dakota State and 88 vs. Oral Roberts.
  • K-State scored its most points (77) in more than a month in the win over UCF to boost its scoring average to 75.9 points per game, which is the third-best through the first 14 games in the past 15 seasons behind the 2022-23 (78.5 ppg.) and 2009-10 (82.9 ppg.) teams.


NEW OFFENSE, MORE 3-POINTERS

  • The new offense has so far increased the number of 3-pointers, as the team has already attempted 347 from beyond the arc, including 33 in the opener vs. No. 21/22 USC (11/6/23), which ranks as the seventh-most in a game in school history. The Wildcats followed with 31 3-point attempts vs. Bellarmine (11/10/23), while hitting on double-digit makes (12) for the first time.
  • In the win over South Dakota State (11/13/23), K-State knocked down 14 3-pointers, which tied for the fifth-most in school history and are the most since hitting 16 at Oklahoma State on Feb. 2, 2019.
  • The Wildcats have connected on 106 3-pointers, which are the most through the first 14 games. The 26 combined 3-pointers in games vs. Bellarmine and South Dakota State were the most in back-to-back games since also making 26 in games at Oklahoma State and at home to Kansas on Feb. 2 and 5, 2019.
  • The Wildcats rank third in the Big 12 in 3-point field goal attempts (24.8) and eighth in 3-point field goals/game (7.6). Senior Tylor Perryranks among the top-50 nationally in three 3-point categories, including 21st in attempts (123), 33rd in 3-point field goals/game (2.93) and 50th in total 3-pointers (41).


MORE THAN JUST THE 3

  • K-State has shown its offense is more than just the 3-pointer, as the team is averaging 34.1 points in the paint this season, including 36.4 in the last 10 games. The Wildcats scored 50 or more points in the paint in back-to-back games vs. No. 12/11 Miami and Central Arkansas.
  • K-State scored 56 points in the paint against the Hurricanes, which tied for the most in a single game in school history (stat kept since 2000-01), and the most since scoring 56 against South Dakota on Jan. 3, 2010.


POINT OF EMPHASIS

  • Ever since the loss to Florida Atlantic in the Elite Eight, in which, K-State was out-rebounded 44-22, rebounding has been a point of emphasis by head coach Jerome Tang. So far that message has been received, as the Wildcats rank fourth in the Big 12 and 32nd nationally in rebounds/game (40.86), including third in the league and 14th nationally in offensive rebounds/game (14.29).
  • K-State has out-rebounded its opponents 10 times in 14 games, while posting an +6.0 rebounding margin, which ranks 55th nationally.
  • K-State posted its highest rebound total in more than 25 seasons in the win over Central Arkansas (11/22/23), corralling 63 rebounds, which were the most since totaling 64 vs. Kansas City on Dec. 3, 1997. Among those 63 boards were 26 on the offensive end, which they converted into 34 second-chance points. The 26 offensive rebounds were the most since grabbing 29 vs. North Florida on Nov. 18, 2012, while the 37 defensive rebounds were one shy of the top-10.


CONVERTING FROM THE LINE

  • K-State has taken advantage of its opportunities from the free throw line, averaging 16.4 makes per game while converting on 72.9 percent from the line. The Wildcats rank among top-55 nationally in both makes (16.2) and attempts (22.4) per game, as the squad places third in the Big 12 and 45th nationally in makes and third in the Big 12 and 53rd nationally in attempts.
  • No game were free throws more important than the North Alabama (12/2/23) win, as K-State converted on 34 of 48 attempts. The 34 makes were the most in a game since hitting 36 vs. South Dakota on Nov. 20, 2015, while the 48 attempts were the most since also attempting 48 vs. Southern Utah on Nov. 14, 2014. Both were just outside the school’s all-time top-10.


BETTER DEFENSIVE EFFORT

  • After allowing 75 points or more 4 times in the first 9 games, K-State has made strides on the defensive end in the last 5 games, allowing just 57.8 points on 37.4 percent (113-of-302) shooting. The Wildcats have held 4 opponents to 60 points or less in that span, including 55 to Chicago State and 52 to UCF.
  • The 52 points allowed to UCF were the fewest allowed in a Big 12 game under Jerome Tang and the fewest in a Big 12 opener since surrendering 44 to No. 25 Texas Tech on Jan. 11, 2003.
  • It is not the first instances that K-State has shown the ability to be a good defensive team, as the Wildcats held South Dakota State (11/13/23) and Providence (11/17/23) to an average of 69 points, while Central Arkansas (11/22/23) scored a season-low 56 points on 27.9 percent (19-of-68) shooting.


SUCCESS IN NON-CONFERENCE PLAY

  • K-State has posted a 181-56 (.764) record in non-conference play since the 2006-07 season. During that span, the Wildcats have a 137-15 (.901) mark at home venues (includes games played at Bramlage Coliseum, INTRUST Bank Arena in Wichita and the T-Mobile Center in Kansas City) in non-conference play, including a 126-13 (.907) mark at Bramlage Coliseum.
  • At 10-3, K-State earned double-digit wins in non-conference play for the second straight season and the 14th time in the last 19 seasons (since 2006-07). The 10 wins marked the second-most in that span in the last 6 seasons.

 

YearOverallHomeBramlage
2006-0711-47-07-0
2007-0810-48-17-1
2008-0912-311-010-0
2009-1013-19-08-0
2010-1112-39-18-1
2011-1211-17-06-0
2012-1311-29-08-0
2013-1410-37-17-1
2014-157-66-25-2
2015-1611-28-08-0
2016-1711-28-08-0
2017-1811-28-18-0
2018-1910-37-06-0
2019-207-66-26-1
2020-214-54-54-5
2021-228-56-16-1
2022-2312-18-07-0
2023-2410-38-17-1
Total180-56137-15126-13


1700 WINS AND COUNTING

  • K-State’s overtime 96-87 win over Nevada on Nov. 22, 2022, in the semifinals of the Cayman Islands Classic represented the 1,700th win in school history. The Wildcats are the 43rd Division I team to eclipse 1,700 wins, including the sixth Big 12 school.
  • The Wildcats have 1,731-1,226 (.585) all-time record as a program, which includes 32 NCAA Tournament appearances and 21 conference championships.


LATE GAME PERRY

  • Senior Tylor Perry has become the very definition of a clutch player, as his heroics against North Alabama (12/2/23) and Villanova (12/5/23) lifted the Wildcats to victory in overtime. Perry’s step back 3-pointer with 3.9 seconds in the overtime win over Villanova came on the heels of a similar step back triple that forced overtime vs. North Alabama with 8 seconds left in regulation.
  • Dating back to his days at North Texas, Perry has now made seven shots to either win a game or send a game into overtime in his Division I career.
  • Perry’s late game heroics go beyond the last 3 seasons. As a senior in high school, he sank a buzzer beater to send his Spiro High School team to the semifinals of the state tournament.


PERRY MORE THAN JUST A SCORER

  • Senior Tylor Perry proved that he is more than just a scorer in the opener vs. No. 21/22 USC (11/6/23) in Las Vegas, leading the team in assists (6) and steals (4) to go with 6 rebounds and his team-best 22 points. Currently, he is averaging 15.7 points, 5.4 assists, 3.1 rebounds and 1.4 steals in 36.1 minutes per game.
  • Perry has scored in double figures in 12 of the first 14 games, including in 7 of the last 8 games. Among those team-tying 12 double-digit scoring games is a team-best 5 20-point games, which includes 22 vs. USC (11/6/23) and South Dakota State (11/13/23), 24 vs. Providence (11/17/23), 20 vs. Oral Roberts (11/28/23) and a season-best 25 in the win over UCF (1/6/24).
  • Perry ranks the Big 12’s top 10 in 6 categories, including tops in free throw percentage (94.4), second in 3-point field goals (2.93) and minutes (36.1), fifth in assists (5.4 apg.), seventh in assist/turnover ratio (2.5) and ninth in scoring (15.7 ppg.). He is also ranks 14th in 3-point field goal percentage (33.3).
  • Perry recently eclipsed 2,000 career points in his college career, which includes stints at Coffeyville Community College (2019-21) and North Texas (2021-23). He currently has 1,263 points at the Division I level.
  • Perry had at least 4 3-pointers in 5 games, while he had a season-high 6 treys against South Dakota State (11/13/23) and UCF (1/6/24). He now has made at least 4 3-pointers in 28 career games at the Division I level, while he hast 6 or made triples in 5 games (7 vs. San Jose State (11/25/22) and 6 at UAB (2/19/22), 6 vs. Sam Houston (3/19/23), 6 vs. South Dakota State and 6 vs. UCF).


EXCELLING FROM THE FREE THROW LINE

  • Senior Tylor Perry ranks among the best from the free throw line, hitting on 94.4 percent (67-of-71). He ranks ninth nationally and first in the Big 12. He made 34 straight free throws before missing in overtime vs. Oral Roberts.
  • Among Perry’s 24 points in the win over Providence (11/17/23) was a perfect 14-of-14 performance from the free throw line, which tied for the third-best in school history and the best since Michael Beasley went 15-of-15 from the line at Baylor on Feb. 23, 2008. Only Beasley and Steve Henson, who went a school-best 17-of-17 from the stripe at Iowa State on Feb. 24, 1988, have enjoyed a better performance from the free throw line.


BUCKET GETTER

  • Head coach Jerome Tang has said that he wants guard Cam Carter to be a bucket getter and that’s what the junior has delivered in the first 14 games, averaging a team-best 16.2 points per game. He also leads the Wildcats in field goals (82) and attempts (207), while he is second to Tylor Perry in 3-point field goals (27) and attempts (92).
  • After recording his first 20-point game vs. South Dakota State (11/13/23) with a game-high 25 points on 10-of-20 field goals, including 4-of-8 from 3-point range, Carter took it to another level vs. No. 12/11 Miami (11/19/23).
  • Carter scored a career-best 28 points vs. the Hurricanes, including 24 in the second half when the Wildcats cut a 24-point deficit to just 7 points in the last 45 seconds. He finished the game 12-of-22 from the field (10-of-16 in the second half) with 5 rebounds, 4 assists, 2 steals and a block in 38 minutes.
  • Carter added a third 20-point game in his return to his home state of Louisiana, as he poured in a game-high 21 points on 7-of-18 shooting with 8 rebounds and 4 assists in the win at LSU (12/9/23).
  • In addition to scoring in double figures in 12 games, Carter notched his first career double-double vs. Oral Roberts (11/28/23), posting 19 points on 6-of-13 shooting with a career-best 10 rebounds, 5 assists and team-high 3 steals.
  • Carter ranks in the Big 12’s top 10 in 4 categories, including first in minutes (36.1), fourth in steals (2.07), seventh in scoring (16.2 ppg.) and eighth in free throw percentage (83.7).


FINDING A RHYTHM

  • Junior Arthur Kaluma is starting to find a rhythm after a slow start to the season, becoming a double-double threat nearly every night. He has scored in double figures in 11 games, all coming in the last 12 games played, while totaling a team-best 3 double-doubles. He is third in scoring at 15.1 points per game, while averaging the second-most rebounds at 8.4 per game.
  • Kaluma was named one of five national players of the week by the USBWA and the Oscar Robertson Trophy as well as Big 12 Player of the Week on Dec. 11 after averaging a double-double in wins over Villanova (12/5/23) and LSU (12/9/23). He averaged 21.5 points on 76.2 percent (16-of-21) shooting, including 85.7 percent (6-of-7) from 3-point range, to go with 10.0 rebounds and 2.5 assists in 39.6 minutes per game. He is just the third Wildcat to earn the weekly award from the USBWA, while it was the first of Kaluma’s career.
  • Kaluma scored a game and season-high 26 points in the win over Villanova, knocking down 10-of-13 field goals, including 3-of-3 from 3-point range, and 3-of-3 from the free throw line to go with 9 rebounds and 4 assists in a season-best 44 minutes. The 26 points were one shy of his career-high of 27 he had against BYU while playing at Creighton in 2022.
  • Kaluma continued his impressive play in the Chicago State win, recording his sixth career double-double, including his third as a Wildcat, with 14 points on 5-of-11 shooting to go with a season-high 13 rebounds in 38 minutes. He has now scored in double figures in 51 career games, including 11 this season.
  • The weekly honors came on the heels of being named to the Baha Mar Hoops Bahamas Championship All-Tournament Team after averaging 18.0 points and 9.5 rebounds in games against Providence (11/17/23) and No. 12/11 Miami (11/19/23). After scoring 18 in the OT win over Providence, including a pivotal 3-pointer, he had his first double-double as a Wildcat and fourth in his career with 18 points and 12 rebounds against the Hurricanes.
  • Kaluma is one of 3 players (Kansas’ Hunter Dickinson and Kevin McCullar Jr.) in the Big 12 to rank in the top-15 in both scoring and rebounding.


ATTACKING THE GLASS

  • Senior David N’Guessan has been impressive so far on the glass, ranking third in the Big 12 in rebounding at 8.6 boards per game. He ranks second in the league in offensive rebounds (3.50 orpg.), while he is sixth in defensive rebounds (5.07 drpg.). He has a team-best double-digit rebounds in 5 games, including a career-best 14 boards vs. UCF (1/6/24).
  • N’Guessan grabbed his first career double-double in the opener vs. No. 21/22 USC (11/6/23), as he scored 10 points on 5-of-8 field goals to go with a then career-best 10 rebounds in just over 27 minutes.
  • N’Guessan broke his career-high with 11 rebounds vs. South Dakota State (11/13/23) then matched it in the win over Central Arkansas (11/22/23) while collecting his second double-double with a season-high 11 points. He nearly had double-doubles vs. Wichita State (12/21/23) and Chicago State (1/2/24).
  • N’Guessan gained valuable experience this past summer training with the Dutch National Team, as the Orange Lions competed in the FIBA Olympic Pre-Qualifying Tournament in Istanbul, Turkiye August 13-16. He averaged 9 points on 55.6 percent shooting with 6.3 rebounds in the 3-game tournament.


BIG MAN OFF TO SOLID START

  • Senior Will McNair is off to solid start to the season, averaging 7.8 points on 60 percent shooting to go along with 4.7 rebounds through 13 games with 12 starts in 21 minutes per game.
  • McNair came off the bench to score 8 points vs. USC (11/6/23) then has earned starts in 11 of the last 12 games. He has double figures in 5 of those 12 starts, including a season-high 13 points in the win at LSU (12/9/23), while he had 11 points each in wins over Oral Roberts (11/28/23) and UCF (1/6/24).


FRESHMEN SHOWING PROMISE

  • Three-man freshman class of Dai Dai Ames, R.J. Jones and Macaleab Rich have all shown promise after being pressed into early action. The trio were part of a consensus top-35 recruiting class.
  • Ames has already scored in double figures in 4 games, including a season-best 14 points vs. UCA (11/22/23), while he has dished out at least 3 assists in 7 of his 13 games played with a season-high 7 vs. South Dakota State (11/13/23).
  • Jones has played in 12 games, averaging 10.8 minutes per game. He ranks third on the team in 3-pointers (10), scoring in 6 of 12 games played with a season-best 14 points vs. South Dakota State (11/13/23).
  • Rich, whose dunk against Central Arkansas made the Sportcenter Top 10, has wowed fans with his potential, logging a near double-double vs. the Bears with a season-best 13 points and 8 rebounds in under 18 minutes.


KALUMA, PERRY NAMED TO PRESEASON ALL-BIG 12 TEAM

  • Junior Arthur Kaluma and fifth-year senior Tylor Perry were each chosen as Honorable Mention selections to the Preseason All-Big 12 Team by the league coaches when the league office announced its annual preseason teams.
  • Kaluma and Perry are the first Wildcats named to the Preseason All-Big 12 since Barry Brown Jr. and Dean Wade in 2018-19.
  • A 6-foot-7, 225-pound wing, Kaluma transferred to K-State after an impressive 2-year stint (2021-23) at Creighton, where he helped the Bluejays to 47 wins, including 26 in BIG EAST play, a pair of NCAA Tournament appearances (2022, 2023) and the school’s first trip to the Elite Eight in 2022-23.
  • A 5-foot-11, 182-pound guard, Perry came to K-State after a decorated 2-year career (2021-23) at North Texas, where he led the Mean Green to 56 total wins, including a school-record 31 in 2022-23, the 2023 NIT Championship and 2022 C-USA regular-season title. In addition to being the 2023 C-USA Player of the Year and NIT Most Outstanding Player, he was twice named to the C-USA First Team (2022, 2023) while was the league’s Sixth Man of the Year in 2022.


KALUMA NAMED TO PRESEASON WATCH LIST FOR JULIUS ERVING AWARD 

  • Kaluma was also one of 20 players named to the preseason Watch List for the 2024 Julius Erving Award, which annually recognizes the nation’s top small forward, by the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame.
  • This is the second time that Kaluma has been named to a preseason Watch List after he was chosen to the Watch List for the Karl Malone Power Forward of the Year Award in 2022-23 while playing at Creighton.


ONCE-IN-A-LIFETIME TRIP
‘CATS SPENT 10 DAYS IN AUGUST IN ISRAEL, ABU DHABI, U.A.E.

  • K-State got a jump start on its preparations for the 2023-24 season with a historic 10-day trip to Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, Israel and Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates [UAE] from August 9-20.
  • During the Israeli portion of the trip, the team enjoyed walking tours of the Old City Jerusalem, the City of David, Bethlehem and Old City Jaffa, visits to the Yad Vashem – the World Holocaust Remembrance Center – as well as the Western Wall and the Dead Sea. While in Abu Dhabi, they visited the Abraham Peace Accords House and the Grand Mosque.
  • The Wildcats played 3 games on the tour, defeating the Israeli Select Team, 94-87, on August 15 in Tel Aviv before an 83-81 setback to Team Mexico on August 17 and a 112-72 win over Al-Sharjah on August 18, both in Abu Dhabi. Senior Tylor Perry paced 4 Wildcats in double figures on the tour, averaging 22.7 points on 56.8 percent shooting.
  • K-State, along with the University of Arizona, are the first college teams to ever take a foreign tour to Abu Dhabi.
  • The exhibition tour was generously sponsored by Athletes for Israel and its Founder Daniel Posner as well as the Abu Dhabi Tourism Board. In their efforts to combat antisemitism and racism, Athletes For Israel brings athletes to Israel so they can experience the Holy Land and develop a connection with its history, culture, innovation and people.
  • For more information on the organization and its mission, visit athletesforisrael.org.


UP NEXT: AT TEXAS TECH (12-2, 1-0 Big 12)

  • K-State concludes its 2-game road swing on Saturday afternoon, as the Wildcats visit Texas Tech (12-2, 1-0 Big 12 for a 3 p.m., CT tipoff on ESPN2.

 

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