Marvin Clark “loved” watching Kansas State defeat Kansas at Bramlage Coliseum

MarvinClark If Kansas State ends up landing Marvin Clark, its 85-82 overtime victory against Kansas on Monday could be a big reason why.

Clark, a three-star small forward from Kansas City who is currently enrolled at Sunrise Christian Academy in Wichita, watched the game from the front row while on an unofficial visit. And he had a good time. Such a good time, that he rushed the floor with K-State’s student body when it was over.

“That’s the craziest game I’ve ever been to or been a part of. I loved it,” Clark said Tuesday by phone. “First time I’ve rushed the floor. People were telling me it was going to happen, so when it happened I figured what the heck?”
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Combo guard Tre Harris picks Kansas State

Tre Harris, a 6-foot-5 combo guard, enjoyed his official visit to Kansas State so much that he gave a verbal commitment to the Wildcats late Saturday night.

Harris is originally from Edwardsville, Ill. but currently plays basketball at Fishburne Military Academy in Virginia. Harris was lightly recruited out of high school and doesn’t even have a profile on Rivals. He chose to attend prep school in order to improve his body and earn more scholarship offers. The plan paid off, as he received interest from Toledo, Delaware and K-State. After visiting all three schools, he decided K-State was the obvious choice.

“I liked everything about Kansas State,” Harris said by phone Sunday morning while traveling home from Manhattan. “Coach (Bruce) Weber and his coaching staff are some guys who know what they are doing. The school has had success and is coming off the Big 12 championship. It’s a good spot in a good conference in the highest level in the country. That is probably what got me here.”
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Football Friday: Can Kansas State go 7-5?

It’s time for another Football Friday. Thanks again for all the questions. Let’s get right to them:

I think K-State’s final record will be 6-6. This is a team that has held a fourth-quarter lead in five of its games. This is a team that came close to pulling off upsets against ranked teams in back-to-back weeks. This is a team that isn’t far away from 4-2 or even 5-1. I think the Wildcats are getting better and will finish the season much stronger than they started it.

But they also haven’t won a close game yet, which is sometimes the hardest thing for young teams to learn how to do. So it’s not like a bowl game is assured. Best case, I see the Wildcats finishing 7-5. Worst case, I see 4-8.

Anything could happen. For fun, let’s breakdown the remaining schedule.
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K-State’s newest hoops commit Stephen Hurt has “skills you just can’t teach”

2014 recruit Stephen Hurt should provide K-State’s front court with much-needed size.

Torn ligaments in his knee forced him to sit out a season at Lipscomb with a redshirt before he could take the court. Lipscomb’s decision to part ways with its head coach following his encouraging freshman season convinced him to transfer to Northwest Florida State College. Now he is preparing to help his team chase a junior college championship.

Outside of averaging 11.5 points and 7.2 rebounds while being named Atlantic Sun Freshman of the Year, Stephen Hurt’s first few years of college have been far from perfect.

Still, the 6-foot-10 power forward doesn’t have any regrets. After receiving heavy recruiting interest from Indiana, Tennessee, Wichita State, Miami and Kansas State, he verbally committed to K-State on Tuesday. Now the thought of attending his third college in as many years seems exciting.

“It’s kind of wild, but regardless of how it happened I think I ended up in a good situation,” Hurt said during a phone interview Wednesday. “I just think Kansas State is the best situation for me. I felt really comfortable with Coach (Bruce) Weber and (assistant) Coach (Alvin) Brooks. They have a real good staff. I feel like I hit it off with the team on my visit. They are coming off a Big 12 championship. It’s a great situation. What more could you ask for?”
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Kansas State lands first 2014 hoops commit in power forward Stephen Hurt

Stephen Hurt, a 6-foot-10, 285-pound power forward from Northwest Florida State College, gave a verbal commitment to Kansas State late Tuesday night. He is the Wildcats’ first commit to for the recruiting class of 2014.

Hurt chose K-State over Wichita State, Miami and a few others.

He will bring an interesting background with him to K-State. Hurt started his college career at Lipscomb and played well right away. He averaged 11.5 points and 7.8 rebounds in his first season and was named Atlantic Sun Freshman of the Year. He decided to transfer to a junior college when his coach lost his job after the year was over.

I asked K-State coach Bruce Weber if he was concerned about a lack of commitments in a phone interview two weeks ago. He said he wasn’t, because his coaches were actively recruiting several quality players. He also said he expected good news to come on the recruiting front in the coming weeks.

Hurt delivered that good news, and K-State has a versatile big man to look forward to.

FAQ: The Longhorn Network

With Kansas State’s next basketball game at Texas set to be televised on the Longhorn Network, Wildcats fans naturally have questions about how and where they can watch it.

The game won’t be available in many mainstream formats (No DirecTV or Dish Network) but the Longhorn Network is carried by major TV providers Cox Cable (channel 272) and AT&T U-Verse. It can also be found on Verizon and Grande Communications.

On twitter, some have asked if the game will be available on ESPN3. It will not. I spoke with Rob Carolla, the Big 12′s Director of Communications for basketball, this morning, and he confirmed that the game will be televised exclusively on the Longhorn Network. He said it is up to each school to decide how to distribute games that are played on its third-tier TV network, and the only institutions in the Big 12 that allow their third-tier games to be shared on ESPN3 and ESPN Full Court are Kansas and West Virginia.
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Postgame: Michigan 71, K-State 57

In its first loss of the season, Kansas State made 36.7 percent of its shots from the field, 22.2 percent of its shots from three-point range and scored more than half of its points on fast break and second chance opportunities.

The Wildcats clearly struggled with Bruce Weber’s motion offense, and that’s the main reason they were unable to push No. 4 Michigan in the second half of a 71-57 defeat.

“We need to spend more time on offense, because a lot of us aren’t on the same page with knowing how to set screens and keep the offense moving,” starting forward Nino Williams said.

That showed when it took nearly 10 minutes for K-State to get its first points out of a half-court set. Seniors Rodney McGruder and Jordan Henriquez were quiet until the game got out of reach and guards Will Spradling and Angel Rodriguez were the only two players that were consistently active.

But while they held the ball or sprinted around the perimeter to get open, K-State’s interior players seemed lost. They rarely caught the ball in good position to turn and shoot, and when they tried to pass back outside Michigan made them work.

The Wolverines didn’t allow the Wildcats to make many easy passes, and that was perhaps what hurt K-State the most. When forwards have to jump or lob passes to get the ball to guards on the perimeter, everything slows down.
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Power forward Matt Atewe to visit K-State

Matt Atewe, a 6-foot-9 power forward from Canada with scholarship offers from eight Division I basketball programs, will take his first official visit at Kansas State.

Notre Dame Prep basketball coach Ryan Hurd said he will be in Manhattan to tour campus on Sept. 14 and take in the Wildcats’ football game against North Texas the following day.

Atewe plays for Hurd’s basketball team in Massachusetts, but is originally from Toronto. It will take a long plane ride to get him to K-State, but Hurd said he is looking forward to the trip.

K-State assistant coach Chester Frazier is handling Atewe’s recruitment, and he has a strong relationship with Hurd. He used to play for him at Notre Dame Prep before Bruce Weber recruited him at Illinois.

“Matt is smart enough to look for good people, because recruiting is about relationships,” Hurd said. “I coached Chester for a little while. He’s a great guy. I know he would look after Matt.”
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“Surprise of the summer”: Omari Lawrence impresses K-State coach Bruce Weber

When asked to name the player who has most surprised him after a few months of offseason practices, Kansas State basketball coach Bruce Weber didn’t mention any of the usual suspects.

No need for him to single out Rodney McGruder or Jordan Henriquez. Weber knew how good they were long before he moved to Manhattan.

Instead, Weber went with someone he didn’t see much of last season.

“You know who has played really well?” Weber said. “Omari Lawrence. I think he has been the surprise of the summer.”

Surprise? Shock may be a better word. Lawrence, a junior guard who transferred to K-State from St. John’s after a redshirt year in junior college, played so rarely in his debut season with the Wildcats that some fans might have trouble recognizing him. (He’s the one on the left in the above picture, by the way).

Though he played in nine games, he only saw time at the very end of blowouts. His season totals: 20 minutes, six rebounds, five points and two assists. Not much for a new coach to go by there.

But every player responds to a coaching change differently. It seems Lawrence has responded very well to Weber after struggling under former coach Frank Martin.

Weber said Lawrence has lost almost 20 pounds from the end of last season, and is putting his new 6-foot-3, 200-pound frame to good use.

“He dropped a lot of weight and came in with a good attitude,” Weber said. “He gave himself the chance to be in good shape. He has a better motor, he’s active and that’s all been good. He’s very committed right now. When he’s coming away from workouts you can tell he’s really putting the time in. I’ve seen a lot of good things from him.”
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Bruce Weber enjoyed trip to NBA Draft

Bruce Weber has coached several players who have been selected in the NBA Draft, but he experienced the event up close for the first time on Thursday.

Former Illinois center Meyers Leonard (pictured to the left with David Stern) invited the new Kansas State coach to the draft, and sat with him and four other close friends and relatives in the “Green Room” until the Portland Trail Blazers took him with the No. 11 pick.

Sharing the joy of becoming a lottery pick with a former player was a thrill.

“I was obviously excited for our player and his family,” Weber said. “As a coach, it’s a nice moment. It’s a proud moment. His story makes it even better. He was a kid who grew very late, and came from a small town. He was not a highly touted player, now he is a lottery pick. You hope you had something to do with that in his development as a player and a person.”

It was fun to be in the middle of all the action, too.
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