Oh, if only K-State’s Nino Williams played every game against Baylor

Besides scoring 18 points and grabbing seven rebounds, Nino Williams also played solid defense.

Charlie Riedel/AP

MANHATTAN, Kan. — Kansas State forward Nino Williams could make a career out of just playing against Baylor.

Williams broke out with a big game against the Bears on Saturday, throwing down 18 points to go with seven rebounds in a 63-61 win. Last season, Williams struck for 35 total points in two games against Baylor.

Williams’ magic against his team had Bears coach Scott Drew scratching his head once again.

"I don’t know if we messed up in recruiting or what," Drew said of Williams, "but he has been really good against us."

Kansas State coach Bruce Weber believes he has an explanation for Williams’ success against the Bears.

"Some of it is that his game goes well against their zone," Weber said. "He has the mid-range jumper in the short corner. We should have passed it more to him. It is his opportunity, it is his game, it is his shot and it is his niche."

Williams agreed.

"Coach just said stick with it and keep (attacking) the Baylor zone," Williams said. "We knew we could score from the short corner middles and I was just lucky my teammates found me.

"And we knew they did not have a shot blocker other than (Johnathan) Motley and I figured I could attack the rim from the corners. Wesley (Iwundu) found me in the short corners that are always open once you swing it back and forth. I was fortunate to make the plays."

"He had a nice game," Weber said, smiling. "He reminded me that he got seven rebounds, six defensive rebounds and a big one down the stretch."

Williams’ persistence helped the Wildcats overcome a 12-point deficit in the second half.

"Coach said just stick with it," the 6-foot-5 forward said. "He told us they were going to give us a chance. We knew we were going to get stops — we are a pretty good defensive team, especially the last few games in conference play.

"We really cracked down and got stops. Offensively, we got going. We just needed to get a couple stops. We cracked down and got some stops and some easy baskets."

You can follow Jeffrey Flanagan on Twitter at @jflanagankc or email him at jeffreyflanagan6@gmail.com.