Kansas State was able to sneak into the tournament with their resume building wins over West Virginia and Baylor (2). The Wildcats are not offensively dominated by one player as 5 players are listed as significant offensive contributors on KenPom. The Wildcats tournament success will be based on relying on their defense to hold opponents down. Because the Wildcats rank 28th in KenPom’s defensive efficiency, I am going to focus on the unique microcosms of their defense.
Strength: 2 Point Shooting Defense
Kansas State does a phenomenal job not giving up easy buckets and forcing opponents to take tough shots inside the arc. Opponents are only shooting 44% on shots inside the arc which rank 25th in the country. Dean Wade is a underrated big man who provides some rim protection as well as post defense. Not giving up easy buckets will force any tournament opponent to work hard to score.
Weakness: 3 Point Shooting Defense
This is extremely odd for a top 30 ranked defense but Kansas State allows opponents to shoot almost 40% from deep. This is one of the worst percentages in the country. 3 pointers are the equalizer in NCAA Tournament games so a hot shooter and bad defense could become a slippery slope for the Wildcats and Bruce Weber.