Top Matchup in the Big 12 This Week
#9 Kansas (21-4) at #14 Oklahoma State (19-5) | (Wednesday, Feb 20th)
This battle will be fun to watch. Oklahoma State is the hottest Big 12 team right now winning 7 conference games in a row dating back to January 26th. Two of those games have gone to overtime resulting in wins for the Cowboys against Baylor and Oklahoma. Freshman stud guard Marcus Smart has had 20+ points in four of those games, and hit double digits in scoring in all of them. Junior guard Markel Brown has had 20+ in three of the seven games, and made 10+ ppg in all of them as well. OSU plays an exciting brand of basketball and has one of the deepest backcourts in the Big 12. I really enjoy watching their team play, and if anyone got to catch the OU vs OSU game on Saturday (it was on the Big 12 Network before the Tech vs WVU game) then you know what I'm talkin' about.
Switching to Kansas Jayhawks, they have come back to reality. After winning every Big 12 conference game this year they had a stunning 3 game losing streak. Guess who was the start of the Jayhawks losing skid… none other than the Cowboys. In that stretch there was an unbelievable upset by TCU, and an embarrassing loss to OU. Sometimes this is what happens in basketball when a team has been slapping everybody around and starts to get complacent. They are handed a few upsets to make them come down off their high. Not to mention that eveybody brings their A-game when playing a top 10 ranked team. Kansas is now back to normal form after thoroughly destroying K-State and Texas (with Myck Kabongo) by 21 and 26 points. KU also has a freshman stud guard, Ben McLemore, that hit 30 points in the game against K-State and threw in 13 against UT. Jeff Withey is the Big 12 seven foot center every other team is envious of, as he had his normal back-to-back double-doubles in those last two wins. KU is still the most complete team I have watched in the Big 12, and they have hit their stride again after temporarily stumbling.
OSU no matter how hot they are right now will not win this game. No matter how crazy and loud the arena in Stillwater, Oklahoma gets the crowd will be ultimately disappointed when they get beat by a better KU team. Predicted Winner - Kansas
Big 12 Player of the Week
Jeff Withey (Kansas)| As I stated above, all the other teams in the Big 12 wish they had a seven foot center that was as consistent as Withey. Last week KU crushed K-State and UT and Withey was a big contributor to that. Against K-State he put in 17 points, had 10 rebounds, blocked 5 shots, and had 2 steals. Then against the Longhorns he had 15 points, 11 rebounds, 2 blocks, and 4 steals. When I look at Withey I am reminded of how much he has developed over the years, his freshman and sophomore years he barley played and averaged less than 3 points and 2 rebounds per game. Last year he was much improved to approximately 25 minutes per game and put in 9 ppg, 6.3 rpg, and 3.6 bpg. This season he is passing up all those numbers. I always have hoped that Tech could find a huge 7 footer and develop him in this way, and I think it’s a key to our success in the future to get a big man we can count on to be consistent all season long if you want to be a top team.