December 21, 2006

Cats to face talented field in Vegas

LAS VEGAS -- Kansas State will learn everything it needs to know about itself in the next two days. The Wildcats struggled away from home against quality competition earlier this season, suffering blowout losses at New Mexico and California, but have played better as of late. Now K-State will have a chance to measure itself against Tim Floyd's USC Trojans on Friday and possibly Mark Turgeon's Wichita State bunch the next day.

Here's a team by team field look at the rest of the field in Las Vegas, including the Trojans, WSU and the same New Mexico team K-State fell victim to at The Pit earlier this season.

Record: (9-2)
Best player: Nick Young (6-6, 200, G/F, Jr.)
Best win(s): 74-65 at George Washington 12/09
Worst defeat(s): 80-74 vs. South Carolina 11/16
Overview: The Trojans will provide K-State with their first challenge in Vegas, and Floyd, formerly a head coach in the Big 12 at Iowa State, has an athletic and diverse group that should give the Wildcats all they can handle.

Young is one of the three solid double-figure scorers for USC and can do a little bit of everything. The junior shoots nearly 50 percent from both the field and 3-point range to go along with being an 80-percent free throw shooter. 6-foot-4 senior Lodrick Stewart joins Young in averaging better than 15 points a game and also serves as a serious threat from beyond the arc. USC's biggest threat inside is 6-foot-8 freshman Taj Gibson, who averages right around a double-double with 13 points and 10 rebounds per outing.

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