2008 Kansas State Wildcats Basketball Preview
In 2007-2008, the Kansas State Wildcats (10-6 overall, 21-12 Big 12) finished third in their conference and made it back to the NCAA Tournament for the first time in a dozen years. After defeating USC 80-67 in the tourney, the Wildcats lost to Wisconsin 72-55. The question is—can this team get back to the Big Dance in 2009?
The Kansas State frontcourt has some major questions. Sophomore Ron Anderson (12.0 MPG, 3.3 PPG, 3.6 RPG, 0.5 APG, 54.8 FG%, 46.2 FT%) improved a lot late last season and returns with a decent amount of experience. He’s got a better-than-average shot and some rebounding ability, but his foul shooting is extremely weak. The rest of the frontcourt is either questionable or untested. Senior forward Darren Kent (13.4 MPG, 2.5 PPG, 2.3 RPG, 1.2 APG, 39.7 FG%, 50.0 FT%) struggled with his three-point shot last season and needs to find his sophomore-touch again for this team to win. It’s hoped that junior center Luis Colon (5.6 MPG, 1.1 PPG, 1.1 RPG, 0.2 APG, 35.3 FG%, 37.5 FT%) can finally be productive.
In the backcourt, sophomore Jacob Pullen (23.4 MPG, 9.7 PPG, 1.4 RPG, 3.2 APG, 40.1 FG%, 68.5 FT%) was brilliant at times in his freshman season. He can play either point or shooting guard. Junior transfer Denis Clemente brings speed and a fine three-point shot. He could start. Sophomore guard Fred Brown (9.2 MPG, 3.9 PPG, 1.3 RPG, 0.7 APG, 39.8 FG%, 50.0 FT%) will play if he can find consistency in his shot, especially from downtown. The guard spots are lacking depth.
This year Kansas State will regress. A ninth or 10th place finish
seems likely. In his first season with the Wildcats last year, head
coach Frank Martin looked good but with the loss of three major
talents, he really has his work cut out for him. Don’t expect
this club to get back to the NCAA Tournament in 2008-2009. A NIT
appearance is certainly a possibility and the NCAA could be an option
the following season. This is a team in transition and fans will
need to be patient this year.