Playing in a conference like the Big 12 means that every opponent is a competent team that can put your players in difficulties. Coach Beard expressed this concept to open his usual postgame press conference.
He was happy about his team’s first half, but he also recognized that the Red Raiders had some problems in the second, giving credit to a good Kansas State team that played harder despite being without its star Kamau Stokes, sidelined by a foot injury.
Coach Beard also spent some appreciation words for his center Norense Odiase, praising him for his work ethic (“He’s one of the toughest guys I’ve ever coached”) and for the impact he’s having on his teammates.
The coach was accompanied by Keenan Evans, who scored 27 points, and Brandone Francis, who scored some important points when Kansas State was trying to rally in the second half.