Oklahoma State went on a tear at the end of the season winning 10-of-11 games but capped the regular season with close losses to Iowa State and Kansas. The Cowboys get another shot at the Cyclones on Thursday in the opening round of the Big 12 Tournament and a win likely sets up a third try to defeat Bill Self’s Jayhawks.
But first, the Cyclones. OSU has lost nine-straight matchups with Iowa State dating back to the 2012-13 season. Even worse is ISU’s average margin of victory in those games – 5.4 points.
In last Tuesday’s contest, Jawun Evans hit three free throws with 14 second left to cut Iowa State’s lead to one. A quick foul and two made free throw from Naz Mitrou-Long put the Cyclones up 83-80 and then Jeff Carroll turned it over while trying to inbound the ball to Jawun Evans. Iowa State hit a layup when the Cowboys overplayed the press and Evans hit a last-second three, but the Cyclones emerged victorious, 86-83, on senior night in Ames.
Oklahoma State hasn’t won a Big 12 Tournament game since 2014. Iowa State lost in the first round last year after winning back-to-back tournament titles in 2014 and 2015.
Both teams are locks for the NCAA Tournament, but both can play their way to a better seed with a strong showing in the conference tourney. For the Cowboys, ESPN’s Joe Lunardi has them at a 7-seed taking on 10-seed Providence in Indianapolis. The Cyclones are projected to be a 6-seed facing 11-seed Middle Tennessee in Milwaukee.