Player of the Week:

Dajuan Harris Jr, G, Kansas Jayhawks

While he certainly isn’t the star of the Jayhawks, I really think that Dajuan Harris plays the most important role on the team. Harris is probably the best defender on the team and is such a steady presence with the ball in his hands. Harris didn’t light up the scoreboard in last Monday’s win over TCU only scoring 6 points. However, he set up his teammates for plenty of points. Harris dished out 8 assists and pulled down 5 rebounds and didn’t turn the ball over all game long. Saturday Harris showed off his scoring ability dropping 17 points while still showing off his passing ability getting 6 assists. Harris was also locked in defensively too getting six steals in the win. Harris is a true point guard who can defend well and takes good care of the ball. Harris will probably be back at Kansas next year, but I think will be an intriguing prospect for the 2024 draft, especially if he can add strength and become a more consistent scorer.

Who’s Hot

Erik Stevenson, G, West Virginia Mountaineers

Stevenson continues to be lights out for West Virginia and has found a new level on offense the last three games. He’s averaged 24.3 points over those games one of them being a massive win over Oklahoma State a team the Mountaineers are jockeying for position with on the bubble. He’s been really special from deep hitting at 48% over that three game span. Stevenson has lead the charge on offense all year for WVU but he has seemingly found an extra gear heading down the stretch.

Jakobe Coles, F, TCU Horned Frogs

Jakobe Coles had a really strong week for TCU and his game seems to have taken a big step forward lately especially on offense. His scoring average on the year is 8.7 but in the last 9 games he’s up to 12.1 points per game. He got a chance to step up when Eddie Lampkin went down with an injury, and he definitely made the most of that opportunity. His minutes have come down a little bit since Lampkin has come back but he is still playing really well and is a great option off the bench and gives TCU some protection if Lampkin were to get hurt or gets into foul trouble in a game.

Who’s Not

Jalen Wilson, F, Kansas Jayhawks

Jalen Wilson has hit a bit of a scoring drought through almost all of February. Slump being a relative term he still averaged 12 point a game over his last 6 games but that is a steep drop off from the 20 points per game he was putting up before February. Wilson has still been his usual self in other areas of the game putting up strong rebound and assist numbers, but the scoring just has not been there for Wilson. Luckily Kansas has a ton of depth and guys have stepped up to help them go 6-0 over that stretch. Wilson has been a top 10 player in the country for most of the year and while Kansas has managed to keep winning even with him struggling, they will need him to find his game if they want to defend their national title.

Jaren Holmes, G, Iowa State Cyclones

Iowa State relies on balanced scoring from everyone for the most part but their leading scorer and go to guy is Jaren Holmes and he has gone ice cold. He’s been held under 10 points in each of his last three games and has not hit a three since February 15th against TCU. Coincidently that TCU game was the last win for Iowa State who have now lost three in a row. Iowa State is built on defense. In two of their last three losses, they held Oklahoma and Kansas State to just 61 points, but the Cyclones couldn’t even clear 55 in either game. Their defense is suffocating which takes a lot of pressure off the offense most of the time, but they need to be able to score at least a little bit and Holmes is the guy who needs to get going and spark the offense. The Cyclones should make the tournament but if they can’t figure out a fix on offense they are a prime candidate to be upset in round one.

Big 12 Bubble Watch

Locks to Make The Tournament: Kansas, Texas, Baylor, Kansas State, TCU

In Good Shape

Iowa State Cyclones

Last week I had Iowa State in the lock column, but they are in the midst of a really ugly losing streak. They have lost 7 of their last 9 games but it’s their last three losses that really scare me. Their offense has completely disappeared as they have failed to clear 55 points in any of their last three games. The Cyclones are known for their defense, but you still have to be able to score more than 55 points a game. Now all of this being said I do think that Iowa State is going to make the tournament even if they do lose their last two regular season games and immediately lose in the Big 12 Tournament. However, Cyclone fans have to be a little worried about this team’s ability to make a deep run in March.

On The Right Side of The Bubble (For Now)

West Virginia Mountaineers

Bob Huggins and the Mountaineers picked up a massive win on Monday against Oklahoma State beating them by 18. They were unable to keep their momentum going and pick up a win against Kansas on Saturday losing a heartbreaker in Lawrence. A two point loss to a top 5 team in the country is not going to kill West Virginia but getting a win their would have made things a lot more comfortable heading into champ week. WVU still has two opportunities for big regular season wins against Iowa State and Kansas State. Two wins in those games would most likely put the Mountaineers in a comfortable position on Selection Sunday.

Who Knows

Oklahoma State Cowboys

If Selection Sunday were today, I think this one could truly go either way. Their record at 16-13 isn’t exactly what you would expect from a tournament team but with the countries 7th hardest strength of schedule it could be enough to get it done. The bad news for the Cowboys is that Selection Sunday is not today, and they are trending in the wrong direction. They have lost four straight games and injuries to key players are really starting to pile up. Star guard Avery Anderson has already been ruled out for the regular season and Kalib Boone who has stepped up in his absence is also dealing with a lower body injury. Of course, this is the Big 12, there are no bad teams and with games left to play any win is a good one, but the way things are going right now I think they are on the outside looking in.

Need to Win the Big 12 Tournament

Texas Tech Red Raiders

If you told me after the first 8 games of the Big 12 season that Texas Tech would find themselves on the bubble, I would have thought you were crazy. Starting out 0-8 they dug themselves a deep hole, but they have refused to quit all year long and went on a great run winning 6 of their last 8 games. That is until Saturday’s heartbreaker against TCU where they lost by one after a last second free throw. It would have been a massive win for the Red Raiders but instead it went the other way and made their chances at an at large bid very slim. Now if they were to win their last two regular season games, I think getting to the Big 12 championship game could be enough to get them in. However, considering their next game is on the road at Kansas, one of the hottest teams in the country, I don’t like their odds.

Oklahoma Sooners

The Sooners did pick up a big win on the road against Iowa State, but I think it’s just a little too late for the Sooners to make the big dance outside of going out and winning the Big 12 Tournament. Again, it is the Big 12 so if they got hot and won out and then made a run in the conference tournament it’s possible, they could get in but other than their very impressive win against Alabama their non-conference results aren’t going to help them much. Anything is possible in March but I don’t see Oklahoma getting in without winning the Big 12.

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