Brian Spurlock-US PRESSWIRE
My basketball top matchups and player of the week for the Big 12.
Top Matchups in the Big 12 This Week
Michigan State(0-1) at Kansas(1-0) | (Tuesday, Nov. 13) Michigan State was upset in the Armed Forces Classic in their first game of the season. The team to pull off the upset was underrated UConn, and it was in a hangar at the U.S. Air Base in Ramstein, Germany. Michigan State is going to be a mad team with something to prove as they go to take on the Jayhawks. MSU has a good frontcourt, but not good enough to take on Ellis & Withey from KU. Kansas seemed to sleepwalk through their first game of the season but still beat SE Missouri State 74-55. This would’ve been an easy game to pick if MSU would’ve won their game against UConn and then went into this game and dropped the game to a better KU team. Now after being a ranked team in the preseason they could start with 2 losses and this would make any team scared and on a mission to redeem themselves. It should be a really great game to watch. Predicted Winner - Kansas
West Virginia(0-0) at Gonzaga(1-0) | (Monday, Nov. 12) We have not seen WVU play yet, but we know they come to our Big 12 conference from the Big East a top conference for college basketball. Gonzaga easily handled Southern Utah beating them 103-65 in their opening game. Gonzaga is an experienced team returning 4 of their last seasons 5 starters and is chronically ranked all season long in the top 25. This is a game that I think WVU can win, and I can see the lead going back and forth for the entire game. With that long trip all the way to Washington to be in front of the Gonzaga home crowd should prove very difficult for a good WVU team on their first game of the season. Predicted Winner - Gonzaga
Lamar(0-0) at Kansas State(1-0) | (Monday, Nov. 12) There’s only one reason why Tech fans should be interested in this game, Pat Knight. He took Lamar to the NCAA Tournament last season after being fired from Tech the year before. I thought Knight was in over his head as the head coach for Tech, but I know he understands the game very well and thought he would be a good head coach at a smaller basketball program. Lamar went 23-12 in his first season as head coach. Kansas State rolled easily to an 85-52 win versus North Dakota last week. KSU will be probably in the top half of teams in the Big 12 at the end of the season. This game should be another easy one for KSU, but I want to follow it for the chance that Pat Knight does something special and pulls off a huge upset to open the season. I don’t think it’s going to happen. Predicted Winner - Kansas State
Big 12 Player of the Week
Isaiah Austin (Baylor) | He is definitely my player of the week in the Big 12. The Baylor center is 7’1’’ and has the athleticism of a small forward. I watch him play his first 17 minutes of college basketball and it was amazing. I’m concerned about his ankle sprain that had him come out of the game and made him miss the Bears second game against Jackson State, but he is going to be a special player as long as he isn’t injury prone. I watched him drain a couple treys well behind the three point line with guys guarding him. He handled the ball nicely moving up the court, and stuffed down alley-oop dunks off passes from the guards. Only 17 minutes of college basketball played and he had 22 points (10-12 FGs), 4 rebounds, 2 blocks, and an assist.