"Our non-conference schedule will provide our team with exceptional opportunities to face unique styles of play and great, NCAA Tournament-type teams from across the country early in our season," stated Patterson about the schedule for her 16th season in Manhattan. "We are excited about the opportunity to play in the Cancun Challenge for the second time in five years and to visit Las Vegas for the second time in three seasons. We are also looking forward to the opportunity to face Wichita State for the first time in a number of seasons and to welcome Iowa into Bramlage Coliseum for the Big Ten/Big 12 Challenge. Overall, I think this schedule will prepare us for the upcoming challenge of the new 18-game Big 12 format."
K-State will open the 2011-12 season with a three-game home stand beginning on Saturday, Nov. 12, against Dartmouth. The season-opener will be the first of two contests this season that will be part of a "Wildcat Weekend," as the K-State football team will host Texas A&M at Bill Snyder Family Stadium on the same day.
The Wildcats won the first-ever meeting with the Big Green last season, 69-48, during Dartmouth's 34th annual Blue Sky Classic in Hanover, N.H. K-State is 6-1 all-time against schools from the Ivy League.
Kansas State will continue its home stand with a midweek matchup with BYU on Wednesday, Nov. 16. The Wildcats lead the series with BYU, 2-0, including a 65-62 in the last meeting on Nov. 27, 2009, in Provo, Utah. The Cougars will be making their first women's basketball appearance in Manhattan.
The Cougars tallied the fifth 20-win season under head coach Jeff Judkins with a 25-9 mark, which included a 15-1 record and the third regular season title in its final season in the Mountain West Conference. BYU was upended in the MWC semifinals by in-state rival Utah, but continued into the postseason in the WNIT and reached the third round before falling to USC. BYU will begin its first season as a member of the West Coast Conference during the 2011-12 season, as the Wildcats are 7-1 all-time against schools from the WCC.
K-State will play the first of two games against schools from the Missouri Valley Conference (MVC), as the Wildcats will close out its three-game home stand against Missouri State on Friday, Nov. 18. The Wildcats lead the series with the Lady Bears, 12-3, and won the last meeting between the schools on Dec. 5, 2009, during the championship game of the Commerce Bank Wildcat Classic, 64-60.
Missouri State recorded a 24-11 record last season, including a 12-6 mark in the MVC. The Lady Bears advanced to the title game of the MVC Championships and was selected for the second straight season to the Postseason WNIT, where they advanced to the second round. The Lady Bears are led by three-time All-MVC first team recipient Casey Garrison. The senior guard from Bolivar, Mo., averaged 18.2 points, 5.7 rebounds and 3.8 assists during the 2010-11 season.
The Wildcats will make their first road trip of the season to Cancun, Mexico, as K-State will take part in the 2011 Cancun Challenge on Nov. 24-25, at the Moon Palace Resort. This will be K-State's second appearance in Cancun, as K-State competed in the 2007 Cancun Challenge against Tulane and Michigan State. The Wildcats will face Hofstra and Purdue during the 2011 Cancun Challenge, with dates and times of competition to be determined.
K-State will take on Hofstra, a member of the Colonial Athletic Association (CAA), for the first time. The Wildcats are 10-3 against schools from the CAA and last faced a member of the league during the 2009 Duel in the Desert, as K-State defeated VCU, 73-67, in Las Vegas. The Pride recorded a 19-12 overall record during the 2010-11 season and a 10-8 mark in the CAA.
The Wildcats will also take on its 2011 NCAA Tournament opponent, Purdue, during the Cancun Challenge. The Boilermakers lead the series with K-State 3-0 and won the NCAA Tournament first round matchup in Storrs, Conn., 53-45. Purdue finished the 2010-11 season with a 21-12 record and returns its entire roster for the 2011-12 season.
Fans interested in traveling to the Cancun Challenge may visit www.cancunchallenge.net for information regarding all-inclusive packages to watch the Wildcats in this tropical setting. Additional teams competing in the 2011 Cancun Challenge are: Chattanooga, Cincinnati, Drake, Idaho State, Marist and South Dakota State.
K-State will return to Manhattan to face Iowa for the second straight season in the 2011 Big 12/Big Ten Challenge on Saturday, Dec. 3. This will be the second "Wildcat Weekend" of the non-conference season, as the K-State football team will host Iowa State in the regular season finale at Bill Snyder Family Stadium. Kansas State leads the series with Iowa, 3-1, but the Hawkeyes secured last season's meeting with a 68-62 decision in Iowa City on Dec. 5. This will be Iowa's first visit to the Little Apple since Jan. 5, 2003, when K-State tallied a 103-60 win over the Hawkeyes.
The Hawkeyes made their fourth straight NCAA Tournament appearance and the eighth in the last 11 seasons during the 2011 campaign in which Iowa notched a 22-9 overall record and a 10-6 mark in Big Ten play. Iowa is led by junior guard and 2011 Associated Press honorable mention All-American Jaime Printy. The Cedar Rapids, Iowa, native led the Hawkeyes during the 2011 season with a 16.8 scoring average.
For just the second time in the 21st century, Kansas State will square off against Wichita State with a Wednesday, Dec. 7, tipoff. The Wildcats lead the series with the Shockers, 39-6, with the last meeting between the institutions on Dec. 15, 2000 in Wichita, a 65-64 K-State win. The last time K-State and Wichita State met in Manhattan came on Dec. 18, 1999, a 76-66 Shocker win.
The Shockers reached the Postseason WNIT for the second straight season and the fourth time in the program's history during the 2011 campaign. Wichita State finished the season with a 17-15 overall record and a 10-8 mark in the MVC.
K-State will make its first trip to Brookings, S.D., since the 1974 AIAW Region VI Tournament, as the Wildcats will take on South Dakota State on Saturday, Dec. 10. Kansas State leads the series with the Jackrabbits, 4-0, and won last year's meeting 56-51 on Nov. 30, 2010.
South Dakota State recorded a 19-14 overall record and 12-6 mark in Summit League action during the 2010-11 season. The Jackrabbits have played in three straight NCAA Tournaments after securing The Summit League's automatic bid by winning the league's postseason tournament in each of the last three seasons. Including its 2011 NCAA Tournament appearance, the Jackrabbits have played in five straight postseason tournaments (2007 and 2008 WNITs).
For the second time in three seasons, K-State will take part in the Duel in the Desert at the Cox Pavilion in Las Vegas, Nev., on Dec. 18-20. The Wildcats faced UNLV, VCU and UTSA during the 2009 edition of the event and finished with a 2-1 record. The field of the 2011 Duel in the Desert is yet to be determined.
Patterson returns eight letterwinners and three starters from the 12th NCAA Tournament squad in school history, including All-Big 12 selections Brittany Chambers and Jalana Childs. The Wildcats registered an overall record of 21-11 and a 10-6 mark in Big 12 action, which resulted in a tie for third finish in the league.
The 2011-12 Big 12 schedule, complete game times as well as the television schedule will be released at a later date. The league will move to a new 18-game, round-robin format that is expected to start in early January.
Season ticket packages for the Wildcats' 2011-12 season will go on sale Monday, June 20 through the K-State Athletic Ticket Office. Fans can begin purchasing tickets online at www.k-statesports.com, or can call the ticket office at 800.221.CATS.
Season ticket prices begin at just $50 each when fans purchase a Wildcat 4-Pack of four or more general admission tickets. General admission tickets can otherwise be purchased for $78 per seat. Other seating options include Reserved Bench and Cat Cushion tickets at $99 per seat, as well as Chairback seats for $132 each (plus a $50 donation per season ticket account to the Ahearn Fund).