03/17/2012 07:43 am ET

Syracuse, Kansas State To Battle In NCAA Tournament Third Round

Welcome to the third round of the 2012 NCAA Tournament!

WIth defensive anchor Fab Melo absence from the Syracuse lineup, the Orange nearly become the first No. 1 seed to lose to a No. 16 in the history of the NCAA Tournament. But, some might say with the help of the refs, Syracuse was able to survive a stern challenge from UNC-Asheville.

On Saturday, the Orange must take on the Wildcats of Kansas State, who squeaked out a close win over Southern Mississippi behind Rodney McGruder's amazing 30-point performance.

Will Syracuse have an answer for McGruder and advance to the Sweet 16? Or will Kansas State be the first team to eliminate a No. 1 seed in the tournament?


Overall Record: 31-2
Conference Record: 17-1
PPG: 74.8
Points Allowed: 60.4 pts
AP Ranking: 2
RPI: 1
KenPom Ranking: 7
Standout Player: Dion Waiters
Season In Review: Syracuse started off winning 20 straight games before losing to Notre Dame. That would be the Orange's only loss of the regular season. They went on to lose to Cincinnati in the Big East Tournament semis.
Tournament Experience: 53-34, 34 appearances, 4 Final Fours, 1 National Championships

No. 8 Kansas State

Overall Record: 21-10
Conference Record: 10-8
PPG: 71.4
Points Allowed: 63.7
AP Ranking: none
RPI: 47
KenPom Ranking: 22
Standout Player: Rodney McGruder
Season In Review: Frank Martin's Wildcats had an up and down season with a couple of early overtime games and only winning one out of the first four conference games. But Kansas State went on to win 21 games, including a sweep of Missouri.
Tournament Experience: 32-29, 25 appearances, 4 Final Fours