Texas A&M, a preseason co-favorite to win the Big 12, has lost seven of its last eight games and sits in ninth place in the league standings. But this isn’t the same Aggies team that was struggling earlier in the year, and because of that, this won’t come easy for Kansas State, which travels to College Station, Texas to take on A&M tomorrow night at 6.
Khris Middleton, an All-Big 12 performer, is back after missing significant time due to a knee injury. Dash Harris, the Aggies’ senior point guard, missed a handful of games due to a foot injury, but returned to the court against Kansas last week. Both missed the previous meeting against the Wildcats earlier this season, a game K-State won 64-53 in Bramlage Coliseum.
Since the return of Middleton and Harris, A&M (13-15, 4-12) has found itself with a chance to pull off upsets late against Missouri and Kansas, losing those contests by nine and eight points respectively.
The Aggies have struggled to score. In nine of their league games they’ve scored 54 points or less and just six times in Big 12 play have they scored more than 60 points.
But they’ve received a boost from Middleton, who averages 12.6 points per game. And A&M also has plenty of length and athleticism. The Aggies’ starting five consists of three guys who are 6-foot-7 or taller to go along with Elston Turner, who is 6-5 and Harris at 6-1.
This is a key bounce-back game for K-State, which lost at home to Iowa State on Saturday. The Wildcats, at 19-9 and 8-8 in Big 12 play, will look to prevent a loss that would look bad on their NCAA-tournament profile, and hence, would damage the seed they receive from the selection committee on March 11.
KANSAS STATE (19-9, 8-8)
Yr. Ht. Ppg. Rpg.
G — Angel Rodriguez Fr. 5-11 7.8 2.4
G — Will Spradling So. 6-2 9.9 2.2
G — Rodney McGruder Jr. 6-4 14.8 5.5
F — Jamar Samuels Sr. 6-7 9.8 6.5
F — Jordan Henriquez Jr. 7-0 6.4 4.9
TEXAS A&M (13-15, 4-12)
Yr. Ht. Ppg. Rpg.
G — Dash Harris Sr. 6-1 5.8 2.9
G — Elston Turner Jr. 6-5 13.8 3.7
G — Khris Middleton Sr. 6-7 12.6 5.0
F — David Loubeau Sr. 6-8 10.8 4.6
F — Ray Turner Jr. 6-9 8.9 5.5