The Big 12 Today 3/3/12: The Weekend Slate (Previews and links) and the Week that was (links, highlights)

Its hard to believe it, but it is the last weekend of the regular season for the Big 12. It seems like it started last week. Next week at this time, we will be four and a half hours away from the Big 12 title game at Sprint Center. Mizzou-KU III?

There isn’t much to play for today, minus the exception of one game – 9 Baylor @ Iowa State.

The 6 pm tip tonight in Ames is for the 3-seed in the Big 12 Tournament. Baylor won the first meeting in Waco, rather easily 79-64.

The Bears have won three straight since losing three of four and looks to head into the Big 12 Tournament with some momentum.

Iowa State, the surprise team in the Big 12 this season, had won six of seven and seven of nine before falling late, 78-72, at Missouri Wednesday. Former Iowa State great Fred Hoiberg has done a great turnaround job in Ames, registering their first 20-win season in eight years, the most wins (21) since 2001-2002 and their first six-game home winning streak in eight years. The Clones are 15-2 at home and are 7-1 in Big 12 home games, losing to Missouri.

Baylor has been great on the road, going 8-2 with both losses against Top 10 Kansas and Missouri squads, but has never won in Ames, where they are 0-9.

Another game, Texas A&M @ Oklahoma (3 pm, ESPN3/Big 12 Network) has Big 12 seeding implications, but regardless of the winning team getting the 8-seed, they will have a rematch Wednesday in the first-round of the Big 12 tournament.

The Aggies are 0-3 since having a a healthy lineup, including two home losses. Oklahoma has lost 10 of their last 12 and eight of their last nine.

Someone has to win. And we have to see this game twice in five days? Bleh.

Oklahoma State @ Kansas State (12:47 pm, ESPN3/Big 12 Network): Kansas State won the first meeting in a slop fest and can earn the season sweep and finish above .500 in league play with a win. The Cats are only 4-4 at home in league play, but Oklahoma State is just 1-7 on the road, with their only win coming easily at woeful Texas Tech.

The “Pawnee Pistol” Keiton Page is averaging 25 points per game and draining six 3’s a game over the last six games.

Its senior night for Victor Ojeleye and Jamar Samuels and the Cats can earn the fifth seed in the Big 12 with a win and and/or a Texas loss.

Topeka Capital Journal: Ojeleye will play his final game at Bramlage

KC Star: Samuels gets his last chance to play in front of the home crowd

For the K-State Samuels seems to be more important than anything

Topeka Capital Journal: Double-doubles for Jamar Samuels are much more strongly correlated with K-State success than anything McGruder does?

Bring On the Cats: Q&A with a Cowboy

With a KState win and a Texas win (unlikely) @ Kansas (8 pm, ESPN), the top six seeds can all be in double digit wins in league play.

KU has already wrapped up its eighth straight Big 12 title, and its 12th in the 16 years of the conference. Will they have anything to play for?

Certainly. The Hawks are still coveting a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament, its senior night and Texas is the one team to win in Lawrence in their last 91 home game – last year where Texas won 74-63 to snap a 69-game KU home winning streak.

The notable senior of the group, Tyshawn Taylor, is 68-3 at home (including Kansas City).

KU has also win 29 straight home finale’s and faces a Texas team that is in search of their 14th straight NCAA Tournament appearance, but sits right on the bubble. The Horns led late in the first meeting back in January, but fell 69-66.

The league’s top scorer, J’Covan Brown (19.6) is averaging 23 points a game – the best of any opponent he has faced – in four games against Kansas.

Texas is 0-7 this year against ranked teams.

Bill Self is 144-7 at Allen Fieldhouse.

The Kansan: Taylor, Teahan, Juenemann, to be honored after hosting Texas

Topeka Capital Journal: Teahan’s journey: Walk-on to key reserve

Lawrence Journal World: Once a scout team player, sixth-man Teahan showing skills in games

Rock Chalk Talk: Jayhawks talk Senior Night

KC Star: Thomas Robinson battles Anthony Davis as game’s top player

Missouri @ Texas Tech (3 pm, Big 12 Network/ESPN 3): Missouri’s last regular season Big 12 game will be played in an empty arena in the conference’s worst home court advantage. How nostalgic. I am not even going to waste my time doing a preview on this game. It should just be any other game. The only thing that will make it memorable is a loss…

Missouri has won six straight in this series by an average of 10.3 points, but has won just one of their last five trips to Lubbock, a 94-89 overtime win in Lubbock in their last trip in 2010.

Tech has lost their 16 conference games by an average of 18.6 points.

RockMNation: Texas Tech Preview

PowerMizzou: Tip Time Preview

***

STANDINGS CONFERENCE OVERALL
Big 12 W-L GB PCT W-L PCT STRK
#4 Kansas 15-2 .882 25-5 .833 W7
#8 Missouri 13-4 2 .765 26-4 .867 W1
#10 Baylor 12-5 3 .706 25-5 .833 W3
Iowa State 11-6 4 .647 21-9 .700 L1
Kansas State 9-8 6 .529 20-9 .690 W1
Texas 9-8 6 .529 19-11 .633 W2
Oklahoma State 7-10 8 .412 14-16 .467 L1
Texas A&M 4-13 11 .235 13-16 .448 L4
Oklahoma 4-13 11 .235 14-15 .483 L2
Texas Tech 1-16 14 .059 8-21 .276 L5
EXPANDED AP 25 ESPN/USA HOME ROAD OVERALL
Big 12 W-L W-L W-L W-L PF PA
#4 Kansas 5-3 5-3 15-1 8-2 74.9 61.1
#8 Missouri 5-2 5-2 16-1 6-3 79.7 65.5
#10 Baylor 2-4 2-4 14-3 8-2 74.5 63.1
Iowa State 1-5 1-5 15-2 4-7 73.2 66.4
Kansas State 4-3 4-3 11-4 6-4 71.1 63.3
Texas 0-7 0-6 15-3 4-6 73.7 66.2
Oklahoma State 1-7 1-6 11-4 2-8 66.8 67.5
Texas A&M 0-7 0-7 11-7 2-7 60.9 60.9
Oklahoma 2-6 2-6 10-5 1-8 69.8 68.9
Texas Tech 0-6 0-6 7-7 1-11 59.5 67.5

This Week’s Games

Monday’s Games

Kansas 70, Oklahoma State 58

Kansas locked up its eighth straight Big 12 title with a relatively easy win behind Tyshawn Taylor’s 29 points.

Taylor went on a personal 10-0 run to give Kansas an 18-point lead with two minutes left in the game.

Oklahoma State’s “Pawnee Pistol” Keiton Page scored 29 points, draining 7-of-15 3’s, but had little help until the second half. Page hit four of Oklahoma State’s seven first half makes in being honored as the Cowboys lone senior. The loss marked the first time in 20 years that Oklahoma State would finish the regular season below-.500.

Thomas Robinson added another double-double with 17 points and 11 rebounds as Kansas outscored Oklahoma State 34-8 in the paint.

The win moved Bill Self to 2-3 all-time at Gallagher-Iba, one of three arena’s Self does not have a winning record in.

Oklahoma State played without Le’Bryan Nash. Page combined with Brian Williams to score 49 of the Cowboys 58 points.

CBS Sports: Kansas clinches eighth straight
Daily Oklahoman: Keiton Page shines again, but Kansas still whips Cowboys

Baylor 77, Texas Tech 48

Baylor’s seniors -Quincy Acy, Fred Ellis and Anthony Jones – won their 95th career game, the most ever by a Baylor class.

“Great senior night,” coach Scott Drew said. “I couldn’t be more proud of how our seniors were able to play their last game and go out.”

Perry Jones III scored 15 points and had 10 rebounds, Acy had 12 and former starting point guard AJ Walton scored a season-high 13 points for Baylor, who won their third straight after losing three of four. They were in total control by halftime, leading 40-15 following a 25-4 half-ending run spanning 10 minutes.

Freshman Jordan Tolbert scored a game-high 19 points, and did not get the Red Raiders to 20 points until his second half dunk six minutes into the second half, making it 49-21.

Tuesday

Kansas State 76, Texas A&M 70

A&M has now dropped three straight since they have been back to full health as their disappointing season continues.

Rodney McGruder scored 26 points with five 3-pointers to lead Kansas State, who moved to 5-4 on the road in the Big 12.

The Aggies cut it to 66-63 with a Dash Harris 3 with three minutes left, but McGruder with a 3-pointer, followed by a Harris lay-in by Harris on the other side. A put-back dunk by Jordan Henriquez and a pair of free throws by Angel Rodriguez stretched the lead to 73-65 with less than a minute remaining.

The victory gave Kansas State 20 wins for the sixth straight season and 25th time in school history.

Elston Turner had 22 points for Texas A&M, which has dropped four in a row.

KC Star: K-State, hot from outside, beats Texas A&M 76-70

Wednesday

Missouri 78, Iowa State 72

Missouri trailed for a good portion of the game, but the eight seniors – plus Mike Dixon and Phil Pressey – bounced back from the emotional loss to Kansas with a late charge.

Dixon scored 21 points in carrying the Tigers on his back after what he said “having the season in my hands and letting my team down” against Kansas.

Dixon is now averaging 17.1 points a game and shooting 60% from the floor over the last nine games.

Iowa State’s Royce White scored 20 first half points and hit two 3’s – doubling his season total – but went scoreless the last 12 minutes of the game.

It seemed like Iowa State shot 80% from 3, but finished just 12-31 as they could not buy one in the second half until a few late 3’s from Scott Christopherson.

With the game tied at 64-64 with under four minutes remaining, the Tigers unleashed a 7-0 run, then made their free throws down the stretch to pull out a tough win.

Missouri trailed 40-36 at halftime, marking back-to-back home games that they trailed at halftime. Missouri led 7-0 before falling behind 10-9 and losing until 8 minutes remaining in the game.

In the game, Phil Pressey became Missouri’s all-time single season assists leader and the Tigers notched a school-record for Big 12 wins with 13.

MUtigers.com: Dixon Leads No. 7 Missouri Past Iowa St., 78-72
MUtigers.com: Post Game Quotes
MUtigers.com: Post Game Notes
The Trib: Seniors celebrate after rallying past Cyclones
The Missourian: Missouri celebrates senior night, win over Iowa State
The Missourian: PHOTO GALLERY: Missouri celebrates senior night, victory over Iowa State
KC Star: ‘Happy tears’ as Missouri rallies past Iowa State
KC Star: MU Notebook | Tigers keep White off-balance
Post-Dispatch: Mizzou defeats Iowa State
PowerMizzou: Game at a Glance
PowerMizzou: Senior Moments
PowerMizzou: PMTV-HD: Senior Night
PowerMizzou: PMTV-HD: Seniors Speak
Fox Sports MW: Dixon, No. 7 Missouri beat Iowa State
KBIA Sports Extra: Dixon comes through as Mizzou holds off Iowa State, 78-72

KBIA Sports Extra: Mizzou senior class gives farewell speeches at Mizzou Arena

The Missourian: Marcus Denmon
The Missourian: Kim English
The Missourian: Ricardo Ratliffe
The Missourian: Steve Moore
The Missourian: Matt Pressey
The Missourian: Jarrett Sutton
The Missourian: Andy Rosburg
The Missourian: Andrew Jones

Texas 72, Oklahoma 64

Texas trailed most of the game, but turned cold shooting into hot shooting in rallying past OU, keeping their NCAA Tournament hopes alive.

Texas opened 3-18 from 3, then hit three in a one minute span – two from league’s top scorer J’Covan Brown and another from freshman Sheldon McClellan, who scored a career-high 24 points.

McClellan’s 3-pointer gave Texas its first lead, 59-58, with about six minutes left. He had a dunk in an 8-0 Texas burst in the final three minutes that opened a comfortable lead.

The win guarantees Texas will finish at least .500 in the Big 12, a critical mark for a team hoping to make its 14th consecutive tournament appearance.

Texas has won six in a row over Oklahoma and 13 of the last 15 meetings.

Romero Osby led Oklahoma with 14 points.

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