December 22, 2006
Huggins seeks progress
LAS VEGAS - Kansas State headed off to the neon lights of the Las Vegas Strip with an 8-3 record, a four-game winning streak and a very unhappy head coach. Of course, Bob Huggins is hard to please, but he clearly wasn't enamored with his team's last outing before continuing play in the Las Vegas Classic.
The Wildcats' first two games of the event took place in Manhattan and Huggins saw his team play one good half of basketball out of four. The good one was the first one and it led to an 82-54 victory over Kennesaw State on Dec. 17 at Bramlage Coliseum. Then last Tuesday, K-State infuriated Huggins with a lackadaisical 79-58 victory over persistent Maryland-Eastern Shore.
"We had one big run at the end of the first half. To give them credit, they didn't quit. A lot of people quit, but they didn't quit," Huggins said. "In one timeout, I told them I've seen harder played games at rec centers. We had guys running between top of the key and top of the key. That's the 40-and-over league. We didn't make plays. We didn't get to the ball."
It's hard to blame Huggins for being concerned. K-State is three games away from opening Big 12 action and similar efforts against these upcoming opponents will lead to embarrassing losses.
The Wildcats open the Las Vegas portion of their tournament tonight at the Orleans Arena with a 7 p.m. (Central) game against Southern California. The other semifinal game features New Mexico and Wichita State in the nightcap. The winners and losers of the two games will meet each other on Saturday night.
"We have a lot of work to do. We just need to play hard for 40 minutes," junior forward David Hoskins said. "Once we get that together we'll be fine. It is just disappointing."
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