Peter G. Aiken-USA TODAY Sports
The two in-state rivals are both nationally ranked for the first of two Big 12 games for the first time since 2010.
The Jayhawks come in as the hottest team in the nation riding a 15-game winning streak. But since conference play started the Wildcats have kept pace with both teams sitting atop the Big 12 standings at 4-0. The Wildcats are currently enjoying an eight-game win streak and have won 12 straight at home, dating back to last season.
The high-scoring Jayhawks have struggled a bit at the offensive end their past three games, averaging just over 61 points a game. They average 76 points per game this season. Snapping out of the offensive funk on the road might be a bit hard for the Jayhawks. Only two of the Wildcats' last six opponents have scored over 60 points. On the season, the Wildcats hold opponents to 57.3 points per game.
Although they are 4-0 in the Big 12, the Jayhawks have had to work hard to keep that perfect Big 12 mark. They needed a big shot from Ben McLemore to force overtime against Iowa State and had to rally from a double-digit deficit to take down Texas. The freshman guard is the Jayhawks' leading scorer at 16.4 points per game and has scored in double-digits every game this season except for two.
Kansas has maintained near-total dominance over Kansas State in recent years. The Jayhawks have won 44 of the last 47 meetings between the two teams and they are 22-2 in Bramlage Coliseum since it opened.
It isn't too often that the two Big 12 teams from Kansas face off at Bramlage Coliseum ranked so high in the standings. In 2010, both teams were ranked during both Big 12 contests during the year. That was the first time since 1958 that both teams were ranked during the regular-season game.
As Rock Chalk Talk points out, the game might have a bit of added meaning after conference realignment took its toll on the Big 12.
Kansas fans were searching for a new PRIMARY rival after the departure of Missouri and everyone has said that rival should be Kansas State. These are the kinds of matchups that can build on what was already there.
Kansas and Kansas State will tip off at 8 p.m. E.T. and will be broadcast on the Big 12 Network and on WatchESPN.