🏀 Kansas Meets TCU Thursday to Open Phillips 66 Big 12 Championship
LAWRENCE, Kan. – Postseason play begins on Thursday, March 9, as the Kansas Jayhawks face TCU in the first round of the Phillips 66 Big 12 Championship at Municipal Auditorium in downtown Kansas City, Missouri.
Tipoff is set for 7:30 p.m. CT on Thursday and the game will be televised on Big 12 NOW, with Tyler Denning and Andrea Lloyd on the call. Fans can also listen to the game on the Jayhawk Radio Network from Learfield, with Steven Davis and David Lawrence calling the action.
This will be the second-straight meeting between the Kansas and TCU, who also faced off in the regular season finale. The Jayhawks won that meeting 66-57 on March 4 in Fort Worth, completing a season-sweep of the Horned Frogs in the process. Kansas has now won four-straight games against TCU and the Jayhawks hold a 2-1 advantage against the Horned Frogs in the Big 12 Championship.
Kansas enters the postseason with a record of 19-10 after winning its final three games in the regular season. The Jayhawks defeated Oklahoma State, No. 23 Iowa State and TCU to finish 9-9 in Big 12 play, which was good for seventh place in the final league standings. KU’s 66-57 win over Oklahoma State on Feb. 26 for coach Brandon Schneider’s 500th career win.
Kansas had three players named to the 2023 All-Big 12 team on Monday. Taiyanna Jackson was named a unanimous selection to both First Team All-Big 12 and the All-Big 12 Defensive Team, while Zakiyah Franklin was also a First Team All-Big 12 selection and Holly Kersgieter was Honorable Mention All-Big 12.
Jackson repeated as a member of the Big 12 All-Defensive Team and earns her second all-conference honor. She has recorded 18 double-doubles this season and is on pace to become the first Jayhawk since 1982 to average a double-double, which current averages of 15.1 points and 12.3 rebounds per game. She also leads the Big 12 with 89 blocked shots, which is the second-most in school history, trailing only the school-record 95 blocks she had last season.
Franklin earned all-conference recognition for the third time in her career after leading the Jayhawks and ranking fourth in the Big 12 with an average of 15.9 points per game. She has scored in double figures in 14-straight games, including four 20-plus points games and two with more than 30 points scored, including a career-high 31 in KU’s win over No. 23 Iowa State on March 1. Franklin enters the postseason at No. 14 on Kansas’ all-time scoring list with 1,433 points and fifth in career assists with 412.
Kersgieter is an All-Big 12 selection for the third-straight season and ranks third on the team in scoring with 13.9 points per game. She is No. 13 on KU’s all-time scoring list with 1,465 career points.
The Jayhawks are 14-25 all-time in the Big 12 Championship, which includes a record of 10-9 in first round games. KU has dropped its last three games at the event, including a 75-72 loss to TCU in the first round in 2021. The last win for Kansas in the Big 12 Championship was a 76-66 victory over Oklahoma State in 2019.
Kansas checks in at No. 35 in the most recent NET rankings, which takes into account games played through March 7, and the Jayhawks are currently predicted to be a No. 9 seed in the NCAA Tournament by ESPN’s Bracketology.
With a win, Kansas would advance to play No. 2 seed Oklahoma in the quarterfinals of the Phillips 66 Big 12 Women’s Basketball Championship, which would be played on Friday, March 10 at 5 p.m. CT.