Congratulations go as well to the Kansas State University men’s basketball team. The Wildcats, whose season is far from over, have done something its predecessors have been unable to do since 1977: win a regular season conference championship.
That the Wildcats stumbled Saturday against a good Oklahoma State team in Stillwater in the last regular season game and had to settle for a tie with KSU’s arch-rivals to the east doesn’t diminish an outstanding season. The Cats have run up a 25-6 record, including 14-4 in the conference. They’ve been ranked in the Top 25 most of the season, stand as good a chance as anyone to win the conference’s postseason tournament and have played themselves into a high seed in the NCAA tournament.
Not surprisingly, KSU’s first year coach, Bruce Weber, has been named Big 12 Coach of the Year. It also is fitting that Rodney McGruder was selected to the Big 12’s all-conference first team. Angel Rodriguez was named second team all-conference and is on the league’s all-defense team, and Shane Southwell was an honorable mention all-Big 12 selection.
They don’t have much time to savor their individual or team accomplishments. The next phase of the season begins Thursday when they play the winner of the Texas-TCU game. Go Cats!