October 13, 2007

Martin's Cats debut at Madness event

As Kansas State students raced down the stairs at Bramlage Coliseum on Friday night, football was the furthest thing from their minds. The crowd, which was armed with a plethora of purple glow sticks, was there to sneak a peak at what may be Kansas State's first Top 25 basketball team since February of 1993 at K-State's "Madness in Manhattan" basketball event, and Coach Frank Martin was quick to thank them for their support.

"We're excited to come out here every night and play as hard as you guys cheer," he said as he began to address the crowd.

Due to minor injuries to both Clent Stewart and Andre Gilbert, the second edition of Madness In Manhattan was without a dunk contest, but fans still got what they were looking for during a freestyle dunking showcase and a five-on-five scrimmage, which was also turned into a dunk festival. Not surprisingly, it was prized freshman Michael Beasley who threw down the evening's most ferocious slam -- going between his legs before dunking the ball with his left hand during warm-ups. And though the scrimmage featured less defense than an NBA All-Star game, Martin reminded that Friday's festivities were all in the name of show.

"Tonight was for the fans," he said. "Most coaches just sit on the side and bite their cheek during this kind of thing."

Despite the enormous fanfare surrounding the event, something was indeed missing. Freshman Dominique Sutton did not appear with the team on Friday night, lending credence to rumors about his lack of eligibility.

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