(USA Today) – Kansas has won the Big 12 for 10 consecutive years, a remarkable, underrated run of college basketball supremacy in one of the to three conferences in the country. But after yet another road loss on Monday night, this time to Kansas State, the Jayhawks find themselves in an unfamiliar positing: clinging on for dear life in the Big 12 race with Iowa State hot on their heels. How will the final two weeks shake out?
The remaining schedule
To be fair, Kansas still controls its own destiny. At 11-4, KU has three more games left in conference, all of which come against teams ranked in Ken Pomeroy’s top 25. Going by the kenpom ratings, Kansas is expected to win two of those games (home vs. No. 21 Texas and home vs. No. 23 West Virginia) but drop its final game of the year at No. 9 Oklahoma. That’d be good for a 13-5 mark, Kansas’s worst in the four seasons since the Big 12 moved to an 18-game schedule. An unlikely win-out scenario would leave Kansas at 14-4.
The problem for KU is that Iowa State also controls its own destiny. Fred Hoiberg’s Cyclones are 10-4 and coming off wins over West Virginia, Oklahoma St. and Texas. They have four games left: vs. Baylor, @ Kansas State, vs. Oklahoma and @TCU. Kenpom.com has Iowa State as slight favorites in every game, but figures at least one loss, which would give them a 13-5 mark overall. Winning out gets ISU to 14-4 also.