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Kansas State Collegian

Kansas State Collegian

The independent student news publication at Kansas State University

Kansas State Collegian

Know Your Opponent: Houston will be a problem

Wildcats look to bounce back against thriving Cougars
Guard+Cam+Carter+dribbles+between+his+legs+against+the+Baylor+Bears.+The+Wildcats+upset+the+Bears+68-64+on+Jan.+16.
Avery Johnson
Guard Cam Carter dribbles between his legs against the Baylor Bears. The Wildcats upset the Bears 68-64 on Jan. 16.
K-State 14-5 (4-2) 

Coming off a loss to No. 23 Iowa State, it was Kansas State’s first loss since Dec. 5 where the Wildcats allowed 70 or more points. Foul trouble was an issue for Kansas State, compiling 27 personal fouls. Houston has two players with a free throw percentage above 80%, one of them having an 88.2 percentage. If the Wildcats can stay consistent on defense while also limiting fouls, it could be troublesome for the Cougars.

No. 4 Houston 17-2 (4-2) 

Houston had a rocky start in Big 12 play, starting with a 1-2 record. The Cougars are on a three game win streak since losing back-to-back games against Iowa State and TCU. Houston’s last game earned its first road win in the Big 12, beating No. 21 BYU 75-68. If the Cougars make K-State pay for its turnovers and capitalize off second-chance points like it did to BYU, there are high chances Houston walks away on top. 

 Matchup to Watch: L.J. Cryer vs Cam Carter 

Guard and former Baylor Bear L.J. Cryer is one of Houston’s best 3-point scorers, leading the team at 39.6%. Cryer knocked down five deep shots last game and totaled 23 points in the victory over BYU. Turnovers are rare for Cryer, averaging the least amount on the starting lineup. 

K-State guard Cam Carter is more than just a threat on offense for Cryer. Defensively, Carter has found ways to create turnovers through steals — 1.8 a game. If Carter can cause turnovers for Houston, K-State can limit the amount of 3-pointers from the Cougars. 

Cryer is not the only threat from beyond the arc to watch out for. Guards Jamal Shead and Emanuel Sharp both shoot 35% from distance. It will take more than a couple Carter steals for the Wildcats to seal a win, as he and the rest of the guard rotation will need to bring pressure on defense. 

Carter is also an aggressive scorer for the Wildcats, averaging 16.3 points per game. His 3-point percentage stands at just 31.9%, but he has the ability to heat up in big moments. If he can’t match up with Cryer from distance, forward Arthur Kaluma can provide relief with a 3-point percentage of 40.7%.

Key Players 

K-State 

Guard Cam Carter 

Forward Arthur Kaluma 

Houston

Guard L.J. Cryer 

Guard Emanuel Sharp 

Prediction: Houston 78 K-State 64 

 

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About the Contributor
Avery Johnson, multimedia editor
Multimedia editor for 2023-24. Previously photographer for spring 2023.
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