Busting Brackets

Kansas State vs. West Virginia: Game preview, TV schedule, prediction

MORGANTOWN, WV - JANUARY 06: Teddy Allen /

West Virginia has been struggling as of late. Will the game against Kansas State get them back on track or will they fall further down the Big 12 standings?

TV schedule: Saturday, February 3, 4:00 p.m. ET. ESPN

Arena: WVU Coliseum in Morgantown, West Virginia

When Esa Ahmad returned from his suspension in the middle of January, the expectation was that West Virginia 16-6 (5-4) would become an even more formidable team. But that hasn’t happened. In fact, the Mountaineers have lost five of its last six games, giving up an average of 86 points in the last three games.

The low point of the season may have come this past Tuesday, when “Press Virginia” allowed 93 points to Iowa State, one of the worst teams in the conference. They gave up 62% shooting to the Cyclones while only forcing eight turnovers in 40 minutes.

There’s still plenty of time for them to get it together, although a Big 12 regular season title is likely out of the picture. A team who had a brief chance to be part of the conversation was Kansas State 16-6 (5-4), who needed to beat rival Kansas this Monday to be in a tie for first place in the league. The 70-56 result didn’t go their way, snapping a four-game winning streak.

After losing starting point guard Kamau Stokes to an injury, both Barry Brown and Dean Wade have taken their games to the next level, now averaging a combined 33.4 ppg on the season. Other players like Cartier Diarra and Xavier Sneed have played better as well, allowing the Wildcats to get into the NCAA tournament picture.

Next: Big 12 Mid-season recap and awards

West Virginia’s next game is at Oklahoma, so there’s a legit possibility losing seven of eight if the team can’t get this win. How the Mountaineers, particularly Jevon Carter, defends Brown of Kansas State will go along way of determining who wins this one.

Prediction: West Virginia 80 – Kansas State 73