Game 1 #1 Kansas vs. #4 Iowa State
The Jayhawks proved beating a very good team three times in one season is nearly impossible. In a game so physical that Iowa State’s Georges Niang had to leave with 1:23 left because of the blood leaking out of his head, #4 Iowa State upset defending Big 12 Tournament Champions and the #1 seeded Kansas Jayhawks 94-83. It was the first time the Cyclones defeated the Jayhawks in the Big 12 Championship.
The Cyclones were able to withstand a 20-3 run by the Jayhawks thanks to shooting 66% from the 3-point line in the first half. Niang went to work for Iowa State scoring 25 points. DeAndre Kane finished with 20 while Big 12 Player of the Year Melvin Ejim added 19. The Clones improve to 25-7 and are now 8-2 against top 25 teams. Both losses came against Kansas.
Perry Ellis led Kansas with 30 points while Andrew Wiggins was the only other Jayhawk to score in double figures adding 22. With this loss the Jayhawks move to 24-9 and are no longer contenders as the last #1 seed in the NCAA tournament. The Cyclones advance to the Big 12 championship game where they will meet the winner of the Baylor/Texas semifinal game.
Game 2 #3 Texas vs. #7 Baylor
Despite a late run by Texas, #7 Baylor was able to hold on to upset the #3 seeded Longhorns 86 to 69. They will advance to the Big 12 Championship game where they will meet #4 Iowa State.
Leading the way for the Bears was Brady Heslip who finished with 24 points off of 6-11 shooting. Corey Jefferson finished with a double-double scoring 20 points and grabbing 13 boards while Isaiah Austin added 10 points for the Bears.
This is the 10th win in 11 games for the Baylor Bears and whether they lose or not in the championship game they have certainly earned a spot in the NCAA tournament.
Iowa State is playing too well for me to bet against them. If Ejim, Kane, and Niang play like they played today, they will be crowned Big 12 Tournament Champions for just the second time in school history.
Iowa State by 8.
Follow me on Twitter @SimoneOnSports for all of your Big 12 Championship updates.