Texas A&M looks to make its third straight trip to the semifinals of the Phillips 66 Big 12 Championship on Thursday when the ninth-seeded Aggies (14-17) face off with third-ranked and top-seeded Kansas (26-5) in the quarterfinal round at Sprint Center. Tipoff is set for 2 p.m. (CT) and the game will air nationally on ESPN2.
A&M advanced to the round of eight with a 62-53 win over Oklahoma Wednesday night, a game which saw four Aggies hit double figures—led by 15-point outings from Khris Middleton and David Loubeau.
Texas A&M AGGIES (14-17)
vs (#3/3) Kansas JAYHAWKS (26-5)
Phillips 66 Big 12 Championship Quarterfinals
Thursday, March 8, 2012 • 2:00 PM (CT) • Sprint Center (18,972) • Kansas City, Missouri
TELEVISION: ESPN2 HD
Brent Musburger, Play-by-Play
Bob Knight, Commentary
Holly Rowe, Reporter
RADIO: Texas A&M Sports Network
Dave South, Play-by-Play
Al Pulliam, Commentary
Local: WTAW-AM 1620
Satellite Radio: Sirius 93/XM 191 (Big 12 feed)
LIVE AUDIO/STATS: aggieathletics.com
Texas A&M Snapshot
Record: 14-17, 4-14 Big 12
Streak: Won 1
Last 5 / Last 10: 1-4 / 2-8
Last Game: def. Oklahoma (N), 62-53 (Wednesday)
Head Coach: Billy Kennedy (Southeastern Louisiana '86)
Record: 225-196 (14th year)
at Texas A&M: 14-17 (first year)
at Big 12 Championship: 1-0
-The matchup with No. 3 Kansas will be the sixth for A&M this season against a top-5 opponent, a school record ... all six have come against Big 12 opponents.
-The Aggies are holding opponents to 60.8 points per game ... only two A&M teams have allowed fewer points in the shot clock era, 2006-07 (59.4 ppg) and 2005-06 (60.3 ppg).
-A&M's 3-point FG% defense percentage of 30.5 is the second-lowest in school history, trailing only the '06-07 team (29.4).
-The victory over OU made A&M's senior class of 2012 (Dash Harris, David Loubeau) the fifth-winningest in program history, behind 2010 (100), 2009 (98), 2011 (97) and 2008 (95).
A&M 62, Oklahoma 53: Wrap-Up
-Texas A&M won its third straight Big 12 Championship opening game and has won 5 of its last 7 openers in the event dating back to 2006.
-The Aggies’ victory was just their second in a "first round" game at the Big 12 Championship … in 2008, A&M won in the first round before advancing to the semifinals (A&M’s victories in 2006, 2010 and 2011 were in the quarterfinals).
-A&M won just its second game at the event as a lower-seeded team (2-12 all time) … the other victory came in 2008 (quarterfinal win over #3 seed K-State, 63-60).
-A&M's win over OU was its first ever at the Big 12 Championship against a "South Division" opponent (1-7 all-time).
-A&M improved to 6-15 all-time at the Big 12 Championship, and is 6-6 in the event since 2006.
-The Aggies became the sixth straight 9-seed to advance to the Big 12 quarterfinals.
-The win gave A&M victories in 6 of its last 7 games against the Sooners.
-A&M shot 88.2 percent from the line (15-of-17), a season best.
-The Aggies set a team Big 12 Championship record at the line, besting the previous mark of 83.3 percent (15-of-17) vs Kansas in 2010.
-Texas A&M’s 27-22 halftime lead was its first at the half since Feb. 6 vs Texas.
-The Aggies’ 5-point halftime advantage was their second-highest against a Big 12 foe this year (34-17, +17 vs Texas Tech on 1/14).
-A&M opened the first half 4-of-18 from the floor (22%), but closed by making 8 of its final 14 shots (57%).
-Texas A&M’s 9-board margin on the glass (37-28) was its second highest of the season against a Big 12 opponent (+18 in win at Texas Tech).
-The Aggies' 15 second-chance points were one shy of their season high.
-OU's 3 bench points were a season low by an Aggie opponent.
Big 12 Championship Bites
-A&M is 4-1 all-time in the quarterfinal round ... the Aggies got wins in 2006, 2008, 2010 and 2011 ... A&M's lone quarterfinal defeat came in 2007 to Oklahoma State inside Oklahoma City's Ford Center (56-58).
-Texas A&M will be facing a No. 1 seed for the third time in the event's history ... the Aggies faced Texas in 2006 in Dallas (L, 70-74) and Kansas in 2008 at Sprint Center (L, 66-79).
-At No. 3, KU will mark the second-highest ranked foe the Aggies have faced (lost to No. 1-ranked Kansas in 2010, 79-66).
-Texas A&M is 3-3 as the higher-seeded team and 2-12 as the lower-seeded team.
-The Aggies are 6-15 all-time, but are 6-6 since the start of the 2006 tourney.
-A&M is 5-3 all-time at Sprint Center ... the Aggies will be back inside the building on Nov. 19-20 for the 2012 CBE Classic with Kansas, Washington State and Saint Louis.
-In 21 games, the Aggies are 5-8 against the "North Division" and 1-7 against the "South".
-KU leads the all-time series between the schools, 19-1 ... A&M's lone win in the series came at Allen Fieldhouse in a battle of top-10 teams back in 2007 ... the Aggies topped KU, 69-66.
-The Jayhawks swept the season series this year, posting a 10-point win in Lawrence (Jan. 23) and escaping Reed Arena with an 8-point victory (Feb. 22).
-In this season's games, the Aggies held KU to 40.6 percent shooting from the floor (season avg 48.4%, #16 NCAA), 21 percent from 3-point range and 65 points per game (season avg 74.9 ppg, #35 NCAA) ... full stats on the matchup are on page 46 of A&M notes.
-The teams have met twice in the Big 12 Championship, both in the semifinals and both in Kansas City ... KU survived a semifinal matchup in 2008, 77-71 ... two years ago, the Jayhawks rallied from behind and then held off the Aggies in a 79-66 victory at Sprint Center.
-A&M assistant Kyle Keller spent the last three seasons on Bill Self's staff at Kansas.
-Aggie coach Billy Kennedy and Kansas assistant Kurtis Townsend spent four seasons together at the University of California (1993-97) under Todd Bozeman and Ben Braun, helping the Golden Bears to three NCAA Tournaments and the 1997 Sweet 16.
-A&M has outscored its opponent in the second half of 4 of its last 5 games (Kansas, K-State, Oklahoma, Oklahoma).
-In its last 4 games against top-10 teams, the Aggies have been outscored by an average of 7.5 points (66.0-58.5).
-The Aggies are shooting 73 percent from the line in their last 6 games.
-A&M is 13-0 this year when leading with 5 minutes to play.
-A&M is 12-3 this year when leading at halftime.
-A&M is 12-3 this year when holding foes under 40 percent from the field.
-A&M is 12-0 this year when holding foes under 60 points.
-A&M is 7-3 this year when grabbing 12 or more offensive rebounds.
-A&M is 3-2 this year on neutral courts.
Selected Player Updates
2 - NAJI HIBBERT
-averaged 21 minutes in last 2 games off bench.
-totaled 4 steals in last 2 games (season average 0.4/game).
5 - DASH HARRIS
-has hit a 3-pointer in 5 straight and 6 of his last 7 games.
-scored 6 in win over Oklahoma, more than doubling his career Big 12 Championship point total (5 points in 3 previous games).
10 - DAVID LOUBEAU
-has hit double figures in 5 straight and 12 of last 15 games.
-9 rebounds against Oklahoma were a season high.
-14.3 ppg, 5.7 rpg, 63% FG (17-for-27) over last 3 games.
-ranks 19th all-time at A&M in scoring (1,207 points) and 16th all-time in rebounds (580).
-has played in 132 career games, fourth all-time in program history.
22 - KHRIS MIDDLETON
-closing in on 1,000 career points (959) ... needs 41 to reach the milestone ... would become 33rd player in school history to do so (1,000-point club listed on page 8 of notes).
-got the starting nod in the last 6 games, averaging a team-high 14.8 points and ranking second on squad with 5.0 rebounds over that span ... scored 23 (8-14 FG) with 5 boards against No. 4 Kansas (2/22).
-averaging 14.6 points and 5.0 rebounds in 5 career Big 12 Championship games.
31 - ELSTON TURNER
-has hit 71 3-pointers this season, ranking seventh on the school's all-time single-season charts ... is only the fifth player in school history to hit at least 70 treys in a season (Josh Carter 3 times, Bernard King, Derrick Hart, Antoine Wright)
-In 7 games against ranked opponents this year (all ranked 13th or higher), is averaging 14.7 points, 4.3 rebounds and 3.3 assists.
-has scored 10-plus points in 23 games this year ... he did so just 9 times in 66 games in two seasons at Washington.
35 • RAY TURNER
-averaging 9.0 points, 5.8 rebounds and shooting 59% over last 5 games (cumulative Big 12 totals: 7 ppg, 4.8 rpg, 53% FG).
-has scored 10-plus points in 3 straight and in 17 games overall this year.