Time: 9 p.m.
Late offensive fouls and the foul line made the difference in the first meeting between #5 Kansas (23-5, 13-2) and #3 Missouri (25-3, 12-3), with the Tigers gaining the edge in both categories and ultimately winning 74-71. There's a lot more on the line in the rematch as the Jayhawks can clinch at least a share of the Big 12 regular season title with a win, but a Missouri win would not only move the Tigers into a tie for first but also give them the all-important head-to-head tiebreaker.
Both Baylor and Texas needed a win on Monday night albeit for different reasons. Scott Drew's Bears arrived in Austin two days after losing to Kansas State at home, and despite their status as a likely high seed losing three of their last four games wasn't the best way to bolster their resume. Texas on the other hand found themselves part of the race for one of those final at-large berths, arguably making the contest more important for them than it was Baylor.
We're going with a different setup for daily recaps in hopes of making the reading easier. One piece will focus on the game of the night (or day) and the top individual performances, and the other will touch on other key happenings and some quick hitters on other games.
With the time between now and Selection Sunday getting shorter, every opportunity for a team to bolster its resume takes on added importance. This is the situation that Texas (17-10, 7-7), coming off of a 90-78 loss at Oklahoma State, finds itself in as they host #14 Baylor (22-5, 9-5) in the second of two meetings this season. Baylor is looking to rebound themselves as they fell 57-56 at home to Kansas State, a loss that essentially shuts the door on the chance of winning the league as the Bears sit three games behind both Kansas and Missouri.
With games at #13 San Diego State and against #11 UNLV this week, Steve Alford's New Mexico Lobos had a great opportunity to not only take control of the Mountain West but also make a statement nationally.
With first place on the line in Columbus the expectation was that #11 Michigan State and #3 Ohio State would play a tight, physical affair. And that's exactly what it was, with the visitors from East Lansing seeming to be the more comfortable of the two teams in the first half. Michigan State shot 46.9% from the field but the reason for their 35-25 lead at the half was their defense, as they limited Ohio State to 33.3% and forced eight turnovers.
Saturday is the day that many college basketball fans have been waiting for, with a number of important matchups on the slate. One of those games is #4 Missouri (22-2, 9-2) hosting #6 Baylor (21-3, 8-3) with the Bears looking to keep alive their fleeting hopes of winning the league title. Scott Drew's team is 0-3 in games against the two teams now ahead of them in the standings, most recently being whipped by Kansas in Waco.