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K-State ranked No. 25, Wildcats to face Texas Tech

By Joel Jellison

For the first time in three years, the Kansas State men’s basketball team is ranked in the top 25.

The Wildcats checked in at No. 25 in Monday’s new Associated Press poll, tied with USC.

K-State (13-2, 2-1 Big 12) first received votes in the top 25 three weeks ago and climbed to within five spots of the 25th spot last week. The Wildcats lost 90-88 to new No. 2 Kansas before beating Oklahoma, 75-64, on Saturday at home.

The Wildcats last checked into the poll on Jan. 25, 2014 when they started the season 14-4 and appeared at No. 22.

K-State’s entry into the polls begins a busy week for the Wildcats with a pair of tough games. The team goes on the road tonight at 8:15 on ESPNews against Texas Tech, and faces No. 1 Baylor at home on Saturday. The Bears are ranked No. 1 for the first time in school history.

The Red Raiders are off to a 12-3 start this season but have losses in two of their first three Big 12 contests. Both losses, to Iowa State and Kansas, came on the road. Texas Tech is unbeaten at home this season.

Keenan Evans leads the Red Raiders with 13.6 points per game, and three others are scoring in double figures. Zach Smith averages 12.4 points and a team-leading 7.9 rebounds per contest for Texas Tech.

Wesley Iwundu took over as the Wildcats’ leading scorer after Saturday’s win, now averaging 12.5 points per game. All five starters are scoring in double figures for K-State, and Xavier Sneed is scoring 9.2 points off of the bench.

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