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Baylor-KSU: Three Keys and Prediction

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Baylor looks to sweep KSU for the first time since 2016

NCAA Basketball: Baylor at Kansas State Scott Sewell-USA TODAY Sports

No. 2 Baylor (24-2, 13-1) takes on Kansas State (9-18, 2-12) at 7:00 on Tuesday in the Ferrell Center. The game airs on ESPN+.

Baylor is given a 93% chance to win by KenPom.

The Bears won in Manhattan 73-67.

Three Keys:

1) Free Throw Shooting: Baylor’s free throw shooting nearly cost them in the first game (13 missed free throws), and it did against Kansas. Baylor has missed far too many 1-and-1 opportunities. Maybe that won’t be fatal against the Wildcats, but if Baylor keeps missing easy shots, it will improve the Wildcats odds from 7% to maybe 20%

2) Limiting 3-point attempts: Kansas State shot 21 threes in the first meeting. Sure, the Wildcats aren’t a wonderful 3-point shooting team (255th). But have a few capable shooters. And the 3-point line gives KSU a chance to have a wild shooting night overwhelm the talent disparity.

3) Crash the glass: Baylor hasn’t been as dominant on the glass in some recent games. Kansas State has lost six straight. There’s no better time to get active and start dominating the boards than against the 261st ranked defensive rebounding team.

Prediction:

Baylor has substantially better players. Kansas State will be back soon and could make the NCAA Tournament next year.

It’s this year though, and Baylor is just too good. Barring a wild shooting disparity, Baylor won’t have a KU hangover against KSU. I’ll take Baylor 72-56.