The continuation of the long-standing and popular arrangement with ESPN will tip off with a unique setup on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day - Monday, January 17. Four Big 12 teams will be in action, starting with Kansas State at Missouri at 4:30 p.m. The second Big 12 contest that day will have Kansas traveling to Baylor. All four squads earned NCAA bids last season, with Baylor and K-State advancing to the Elite Eight of the NCAA Tournament.
Baylor will make its second consecutive Big Monday appearance when it travels to Manhattan to face KSU on January 24. The Wildcats posted an exciting 76-74 victory in Waco a year ago. Texas and Texas A&M will continue their Lone Star Showdown Series when they face off on January 31.
Two well-known Big 12 rivalries will take place the next two weeks. On February 7, Missouri travels to Kansas. The Jayhawks won both meetings in 2009-10. KU then travels to Sunflower State-rival Kansas State on February 14 in a continuation of the longest-running series between two conference squads.
Oklahoma State travels to Kansas on February 21. The Cowboys handed the Jayhawks their only regular-season Big 12 loss last season, posting a 85-77 win in Stillwater. The Big Monday schedule wraps up on February 28 as KSU plays the Longhorns in Austin. The Wildcats were 71-62 winners in Manhattan in 2009-10.
The Big 12 was rated as the No. 1 conference in the nation in the RPI last season and placed a league-record seven teams in the NCAA field a year ago. Six different teams have advanced to the regional finals over the past three seasons, the first time since the NCAA field expanded in 1985 that any conference has accomplished the feat during a three-year span. The full composite conference schedule, including games on CBS, ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, Big 12 Network and ESPN's College GameDay, will be released in the coming weeks.
|January 17 | 4:30 p.m.
Mizzou Arena (15,061)
|This is Game 1 of a unique Big 12 Big Monday doubleheader that takes place on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. All four of the teams that will appear in the twinbill reached the NCAA Tournament with two (Kansas State and Baylor) reaching the Elite Eight. The Wildcats lost to the Tigers in Columbia last season. Kansas State senior point guard Jacob Pullen and his teammates will have to deal with Missouri's pressure defense.|
|January 17 | 8:30 p.m.
Ferrell Center (10,284)
|This will be Game 2 of the MLK Day doubleheader. Both teams will head into the 2010-11 season needing to replace three starters. The Bears, who came within minutes of reaching the Final Four last season, expect big things out of freshman forward Perry Jones. Kansas is 6-1 at Waco. The only loss at Baylor came in 2001 when the Bears recorded an 85-77 triumph.|
|January 24 | 8:00 p.m.
Bramlage Coliseum (12,528)
|This game matches the two Big 12 teams that reached the Elite Eight in last year's NCAA Tournament. The Wildcats won in Waco last season as their outside shooting solved the Bears' zone defense in a 76-74 victory. This game also will showcase two of the top senior guards in the nation - Kansas State's Jacob Pullen and Baylor's LaceDarius Dunn.|
|January 31 | 8:00 p.m.
Reed Arena (12,292)
College Station, Texas
|A basketball series that started in 1917 was long dominated by Texas, but in recent years Texas A&M has made this into a hotly-contested rivalry. The Longhorns have won just seven of the last 13 games in the series and last won at College Station in 2004. Both teams will go into the season needing to replace key seniors.|
|February 7 | 8:00 p.m.
Allen Fieldhouse (16,300)
|Few rivalries compare to this border showdown. During Big 12 Conference play, the Jayhawks have a 20-8 advantage in regular-season games and the Tigers have won at Allen Fieldhouse just once - in 1999. Kansas freshman point guard Josh Selby will have to keep his cool against Missouri's pressure defense.|
|February 14 | 8:00 p.m.
Bramlage Coliseum (12,528)
|It's Valentine's Day, but don't expect any pleasantries to be exchanged in this Sunflower State Showdown. Yeah, yeah, outsiders will sneer and say the Jayhawks have won 41 of the last 42 meetings. But since the arrival of Frank Martin in Manhattan, the Wildcats have made the Jayhawks earn their victories. The final scores don't indicate the ferocity of the play and this national showcase in KSU's Octagon of Doom should be no different.|
|February 21 | 8:00 p.m.
Allen Fieldhouse (16,300)
|Maybe it's the ghost of Hank Iba getting the better of the ghost of Phog Allen, but Oklahoma State has won six of the last 14 meetings with KU. Last season, the Jayhawks' only loss in Big 12 play came in Stillwater when the Cowboys dismantled KU, 85-77. Oklahoma State must replace James Anderson, last season's Big 12 Player of the Year, but coach Travis Ford is excited about his team's balance and talent.|
|February 28 | 8:00 p.m.
Erwin Center (16,734)
|The Longhorns were No. 1 heading to Manhattan for a Big Monday game last season, but the second half of their season started spinning out of control with a 71-62 loss to Kansas State. The Wildcats will enter the 2010-11 campaign as one of the favorites to win the Big 12, while the Longhorns are hoping to bounce back from last year's disappointing finish. If those scenarios play out, the final Big 12 Big Monday game could be a classic.|