Kansas-Texas A&M Preview

Kansas’ chances at an eighth Big 12 title in a row are expected

to be on the line this week.

Overlooking Texas A&M may damage the fourth-ranked Jayhawks’

championship hopes earlier.

With their most important – and hyped – regular-season game

looming, the Jayhawks look to remain focused and continue their

dominance of the Aggies in their final conference visit to College

Station on Wednesday night.

Kansas (22-5, 12-2) has four games left in the regular season

and holds a slight edge in its pursuit of another conference title.

The Jayhawks are atop the Big 12 standings by one-half game on No.

3 Missouri, and both teams have pulled away from the pack.

The Jayhawks lost 74-71 visiting the then-No. 4 Tigers on Feb.

4, giving up the game’s final 11 points, but have since won four in

a row.

The regular-season conference title is assured to either the

Jayhawks or Tigers, and their matchup at Allen Fieldhouse on

Saturday will have a lot to do with determining that. It may also

give one team an advantage in trying to claim a No. 1 seed in the

NCAA tournament.

Kansas, which has a game in hand in the race, gained an edge

after Missouri fell 78-68 to Kansas State on Tuesday, but Jayhawks

coach Bill Self would like to avoid a similar fate against the

Aggies (13-13, 4-10).

“I don’t know if I read into the overlooking or that kind of

stuff,” he said. “I do know this: We will not mention Missouri

except to tell them that we won’t mention Missouri until after the

game Wednesday, and then we can talk about it all they want


Despite winning 17 of 18 all-time meetings with Texas A&M,

Kansas survived a mild scare in the latest matchup at home Jan. 23.

The Jayhawks trailed at halftime, but Thomas Robinson’s 18 points

and 10 rebounds and Tyshawn Taylor’s 17 points led to a 64-54


“We understand every game is important to win the championship.

Every game matters to win the Big 12,” Taylor said. “You can’t play

one team, beat them and you win. You have to hold serve at home,

you have to get some on the road, and just play hard every


Kansas cruised to an 83-50 rout of Texas Tech on Saturday,

shooting 56.3 percent from the floor – 9 for 15 from beyond the


Robinson is third in the Big 12 with 17.7 points per game, while

leading at 11.8 rebounds, and should be well-rested heading into

this visit to Reed Arena since Self emptied his bench in the romp

of the Red Raiders. The junior forward had 16 points, eight boards

and five assists in 24 minutes Saturday.

The Aggies have lost 10 in a row to ranked opponents, and all

six meetings this season following Saturday’s 71-62 defeat to


“You’re playing two great teams back-to-back,” coach Billy

Kennedy said. “We competed well at Kansas. They’ve been great on

the road.We’ll have to play very well here to give ourselves a

chance, but we’ve been playing well at home.”

The Aggies have dropped three in a row at College Station for

the first time since an eight-game skid from Jan. 17-Feb. 28,


Forward Khris Middleton is looking to build on his 15 points

against the Tigers, but Texas A&M could use some improvement

from Elston Turner. The junior guard made 2 of 10 shots to finish

with seven points Saturday. He had a career-high 24 against the

Jayhawks last month.

Texas A&M will leave the Big 12 for the SEC next season.