The potential distraction caused by the return of guard Bubu Palo appears to be the last thing Iowa State is worried about.
The slumping Cyclones have bigger issues to deal with.
Iowa State (14-3, 2-3 Big 12) has lost three straight for the first time in three years. The Cyclones have fallen 2 ½ games behind league-leading Kansas, and they dropped eight spots to No. 16 in this week's Top 25.
Iowa State started its weeklong preparation for Saturday's home game against No. 22 Kansas State with a players-only meeting. Forward Georges Niang says the Cyclones got a lot of things off their chest.