🏀 Kansas to Play Cincinnati in Opening Round of the Big 12 Championship

LAWRENCE, Kan. – No. 16 Kansas (22-9, 10-8 Big 12) will enter the 2024 Big 12 Championship as the No. 6 seed and will play its first game on Wednesday, March 13, at 8:30 p.m. CT (ESPN2) against No. 11 seed Cincinnati.

KU has won 15 postseason league tourney titles, including 11 in the Big 12 era. KU (11), ISU (5), OU (3), OSU (2) and UT (2) are active league members with Big 12 tournament titles. West Virginia has won 13 league tournament titles.

Since the Big 12’s inception in 1996-97, Kansas is 49-13 in the league tournament. KU is 1-0 in opening round games, 22-3 in the quarterfinals, 15-6 in semifinals and 12-3 in finals.

Kansas’ NET strength of schedule is No. 1 in the nation through games of March 10.  With a NET of No. 18, eight of KU’s nine losses have been versus Quadrant 1 teams. KU is 7-8 vs. Q1, 6-0 vs. Q2, 4-1 vs. Q3, 4-0 vs. Q4.

This season, No. 16 Kansas has played No. 1 Houston (twice), No. 2 UConn, No. 5 Tennessee, No. 7 Iowa State, No. 9 Kentucky, No. 10 Marquette, No. 14 Baylor (twice), No. 20 BYU and No. 25 Texas Tech.

Kansas enters Wednesday’s Big 12 Championship opener averaging 76.0 points per game with a plus-7.4 scoring margin. The Jayhawks pull down 35.9 rebounds per outing with a plus-2.8 rebound margin. Kansas leads the Big 12 and is 10th nationally in field goal percentage at 49.4%. KU ranks second in the Big 12 and 10th in the nation in assists per game at 19.0. KU also averages 7.4 steals and 3.8 blocked shots per contest.

Named to most every national player of the year late watch list and an All-Big 12 First Team selection, graduate G Kevin McCullar Jr. leads the Big 12 in scoring at 18.3 points per game. His two triple-doubles are the third most in the NCAA. McCullar is second on the team with 39 three-point field goals made and his 6.0 rebounds per game are also second on the team. McCullar ranks in 11 Big 12 statistical categories.

Big 12 Newcomer of the Year and an All-Big 12 First Team selection, senior C Hunter Dickinson leads the Big 12 and is eighth nationally in rebounds per game at 10.8. His 16 double-doubles lead the Big 12 and are 11th nationally and he leads the league with 14 games of 20 points or more and 17 contests with 10 or more rebounds. With an 18.0 ppg, which is second in the Big 12 behind McCullar, Dickinson is the only player in the Big 12 averaging a double-double. Dickinson also leads KU with 43 blocked shots and has 29 steals.

Junior F KJ Adams Jr. leads Kansas with a 59.9 field goal shooting percentage. Adams averages 12.1 point and 4.5 rebounds per game and is third on the team with 96 assists and 38 steals.

Redshirt-senior G Dajuan Harris Jr. is second in the Big 12 with 6.4 assists per game, which is 10th nationally, and third in assist-to-turnover ratio (2.9), which is 27th nationally. Harris averages 8.3 points per contest and has a team-high 48 steals.

Freshman G Johnny Furphy (9.0 ppg, 4.6 rpg) averaged 11.4 points and 6.1 rebounds in Big 12 play. He has started in 16 games for KU and leads Kansas with 40 threes made this season.

Other KU regulars include graduate G Nicolas Timberlake (4.6 ppg, 24 3FGs, five starts, freshman G Elmarko Jackson (4.1 ppg, 53 assists, 22 steals, 16 starts), graduate F Parker Braun (2.2 ppg, 19 blocked shots) and freshman G Jamari McDowell (1.7 ppg).


Should Kansas win its opening-round game, KU will play No. 3 seed Baylor (22-9) in the quarterfinals on Thursday, March 14, at 8:30 p.m. CT. Kansas is 22-3 all-time in the Big 12 Championship quarterfinals.

Entering the 2024 Championship, Kansas is 78-29 in postseason conference tournaments, including 49-13 in the Big 12 Championship. The Jayhawks have won 15 league postseason tournament titles, including 11 in the Big 12. In 2023, Kansas went 2-1 in the event after falling to Texas in the championship game.