This will be the second encounter between Kansas State and Missouri this season and 235th meeting in history. The series is tied, 117-117, after Kansas State's 75-59 victory in Manhattan on January 7th last month. The Wildcats dominated the initial meeting of this season by shooting 49.1 percent from the field while limiting Missouri to 32.7 percent shooting.
The Wildcats picked up a big 57-56 victory over the Baylor Bears in the first game of their current road trip. The win put KSU in fifth-place in the league standings with a 7-7 mark in Big 12 play. The decision over Baylor, which snapped a two-game losing streak, was a spirited back and forth battle which ended with a big defensive play from junior Jordan Henriquez. The Wildcats are a very strong team defensively, as they are allowing only 62.8 ppg. KSU is netting 73.6 ppg on the offensively end.
Rodney McGruder is pacing the Wildcats this season with 14.5 ppg. The junior guard delivered against Baylor on Saturday as he hit 6-of-11 from the field to post 15 points. Will Spradling and Jamar Samuels are both solid contributors with scoring averages in double-figures. Samuels is also grabbing a team-high 6.3 boards per game. Angel Rodriguez has an up-and down year running the point for KSU. The rookie guard was instrumental in the victory over Baylor as he scored 15 points, handed out six assists, and swiped four steals in the victory.
Missouri is in great position to be a number one seed in the NCAA Tournament as it is 25-2 with four games left in the regular season. The Tigers' two losses have come to KSU and Oklahoma State, both of which came on the road. Head coach Frank Haith led his team to a 71-62 win over Texas A&M on Saturday to make it seven wins in a row. The Tigers played well, as they hit 56.1 percent of their field goal tries and converted 17-of-20 at the charity stripe to power past Texas A&M. Missouri has the top scoring offense in the Big 12 with an average of 79.9 ppg.
Kim English was excellent his last time out as he led Mizzou with 21 points and also had six boards and four steals to round out a complete performance. English is the second leading scorer this season for the high-powered and balanced Tigers with 14.2 ppg. Marcus Denmon averages a team-best 17.8 ppg and Ricardo Ratliffe is pulling down 7.0 rpg. Michael Dixon and Phil Pressey are vital and able components of Missouri's lethal attack, which is among the best in the nation.