Markquis Nowell, Kansas State Wildcats, Big 12 Tournament preview

CBB Review prepares you for every conference tournament leading up to Selection Sunday. Up next: The Big 12 Tournament.

The best conference by far this year will battle it out in Kansas City for a chance to be the kings of the Big 12 Tournament. Kansas took home the regular season title, but all ten teams have a chance to take it home. With seeding and at large implications for most teams, don’t expect anyone to take it easy. Great ready for four of the best days of college basketball you’ll ever watch.

2023 Big 12 Conference Awards

Player of the Year: Jalen Wilson, Kansas

Freshman of the Year: Keyonte George, Baylor

Transfer of the Year: Keyontae Johnson, Kansas State

Coach of the Year: Jerome Tang, Kansas State

First Team:

  • G: Markquis Nowell, Kansas State (17.0 PPG, 7.7 APG, 3.5 RPG, 2.5 SPG)
  • G: Keyonte George, Baylor (16.0 PPG, 4.2 RPG, 2.8 APG, 1.1 SPG)
  • G: Mike Miles, TCU (17.2 PPG, 2.8 RPG, 2.6 APG, 1.2 SPG)
  • F: Jalen Wilson, Kansas (19.7 PPG, 8.4 RPG, 2.5 APG, 0.9 SPG)
  • F: Keyontae Johnson, Kansas State (17.8 PPG, 7.0 RPG, 2.2 APG, 1.2 SPG)

Second Team:

  • G: Dajuan Harris, Kansas (8.6 PPG, 6.3 APG, 2.5 RPG, 2.0 SPG)
  • G: Marcus Carr, Texas (16.2 PPG, 4.2 APG, 3.0 RPG, 1.6 SPG)
  • G: Adam Flagler, Baylor (15.6 PPG, 4.8 APG, 2.5 RPG,, 1.2 SPG)
  • G: Gabe Kalscheur, Iowa State (12.7 PPG, 2.4 RPG, 1.6 APG, 1.5 SPG)
  • G: Erik Stevenson, West Virginia (15.5 PPG, 3.5 RPG, 2.4 APG, 1.1 SPG)

Big 12 Tournament Simulation

First Round – Wednesday, Mar. 8

8. West Virginia (18-13, 7-11) vs. 9. Texas Tech (16-15, 5-13) – 7 p.m. on ESPN2

Before the Mark Adams news, this game felt like a toss-up, but that could be enough of a momentum deflator for West Virginia to capitalize. West Virginia knows that this win will lock them into the tournament, and that’s enough for Erik Stevenson and co.

Ariel’s Pick: 8. West Virginia

7. Oklahoma State (17-14, 8-10) vs. 10. Oklahoma (5-13, 15-16) – 9:30 p.m. on ESPN2

Oklahoma State swept the season series, winning by double digits in both games. Oklahoma State is on the wrong side of the bubble, so they know it’s a win-or-go-home situation for their season. Kalib Boone scored 15+ in both games, so expect him to get hot early and outplay Tanner Groves in the post.

Ariel’s Pick: 7. Oklahoma State

Quarterfinals – Thursday, Mar. 9

4. Baylor (22-9, 11-7) vs. 5. Iowa State (18-12, 9-9) – 12:30 p.m. on ESPN

Wait until you see some of the games today. This could easily be a Sweet 16 matchup, and there are quarterfinals games that could be even better. Surprisingly, Iowa State dominated the season series, beating Baylor by 15 in both games. The fans are known to travel for the Cyclones, but if Baylor goes ahead early, it’ll be hard for the Cyclones to battle back due to their lack of shooting with Caleb Grill no longer on the team.

Ariel’s Pick: 4. Baylor

1. Kansas (25-6, 13-5) vs. 8. West Virginia – 3 p.m. on ESPN

Bob Huggins is 1-10 in the last 11 matchups against Bill Self, and the way this season is going, don’t be surprised if that losing streak extends. Expect Gradey Dick to have a big game in this one.

Ariel’s Pick: 1. Kansas

2. Texas (23-8, 12-6) vs. 7. Oklahoma State – 7 p.m. on ESPN

A battle of orange here will come down to guard play. Bryce Thompson needs to outplay Sir’Jabari Rice, a tough ask, but if he is unable to do so, then Texas should run away with this one.

Ariel’s Pick: 2. Texas

3. Kansas State (23-8, 11-7) vs. 6. TCU (20-11, 9-9) – 9:30 p.m. on ESPN

First of all, hats off to Kansas State. If you thought they’d be the three seed before the season started, please tell me what the future is like since you’re obviously a time traveler. We got a battle of orange, and now we get a battle of purple. Mike Miles is back and this five-day rest period should have him ready to go, and he alone will be enough to take the Frogs to the next round.

Ariel’s Pick: 6. TCU

Semifinals – Friday, Mar. 10

4. Baylor vs 1. Kansas – 7 p.m. on ESPN

The last two national champions face off in the semifinal of their conference tournament. Crazy right? Let’s be honest, if Baylor played both games on a neutral court this year they would have swept Kansas. The Allen Fieldhouse magic miraculously flipped that matchup. While the drive for KU is 45 minutes compared to ten hours, Baylor will pull off the “upset” and move on to the finals.

Ariel’s Pick: 4. Baylor

2. Texas vs 6. TCU – 9:30 p.m. on ESPN

The scariest team to play in the tournament is an inconsistent one. Like the Baylor- KU situation, TCU probably sweeps them if Texas doesn’t pull off a massive second-half comeback at home. This is the year of the Toad, and TCU will join their football team in their conference final game.

Ariel’s Pick: 6. TCU

Championship – Saturday, Mar. 11

4. Baylor vs 6. TCU – 6 p.m. on ESPN

The odds of a four-seed and a six-seed playing in the finals is very unlikely, but this is the Big 12, and both of these schools would win 95% of other conferences. George, Flagler, and Cryer vs Miles and Baugh is a terrific matchup, led by two of the best coaches in the country. This could be a buzzer-beater win, and a win by more than five would be a shock. In the end, it comes down to who can make shots, and Baylor has the edge on that.

Ariel’s Pick: 4. Baylor

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