The Big 12 tournament featured some great semifinal action on Friday that led to a few surprises along the way.
The Kansas Jayhawks allowed the Iowa State Cyclones to hang around for awhile, but it was the second half that proved to be the difference in that game when the Jayhawks finally pulled away.
In the other semifinal matchup, Kansas State was able to hold Oklahoma State's offense in check the entire game and it made things a lot easier for the Wildcats who topped the Cowboys to advance to the final.
The Jayhawks and Wildcats have met twice so far this season with Kansas getting the better of Kansas St. both times. In the first meeting, the Jayhawks escaped with a four-point win, but in the second game the Jayhawks flexed their muscle and routed the Wildcats by 21.
You can throw those results out the window, however, as the final of the Big 12 tournament is a whole new ball game.
Let's take a look at the scores from Friday's Big 12 tourney action and how the bracket is shaping up, as well as the biggest surprise from each semifinal game.
Big 12 Tournament Semifinal Scores
No. 1 Kansas-88, No. 5 Iowa State-73
No. 2 Kansas State-68, No. 3 Oklahoma State-57
Big 12 Tournament Bracket
Biggest Surprises From Friday
Kansas vs. Iowa St.: Bill Self Loses It and Team Responds
This game was close until the second half began when Kansas pulled away.
Kansas head coach Bill Self was close himself the entire first half—close to losing it, that is.
Self clearly wasn't happy with the officiating and some of the calls on the floor early on. It was only a matter of time before he got a technical foul and quite frankly, it was surprising he didn't get one earlier than he did.
Self finally notched a technical foul midway through the first half after one of his players received one. After draining a 3-pointer, star guard Ben McLemore did a little dance in front of the Cyclones bench and that earned him the techinical foul.
The Kansas coach was irate and after flipping out on the officials for a few minutes, he finally got the tech to match his player's. The Jayhawks seemed to respond, however, and their level of play noticeably improved after Self lost it on the sidelines.
Kansas St. vs. Oklahoma St.: Cowboys' Lack of Offense
Oklahoma St. isn't an elite offensive team by any stretch, but the fact that it scored just 57 points after averaging 73 per game the entire season was shocking to say the least.
Behind its struggles was the fact that the Cowboys shot a dreadful 24 percent from long range and just under 31 percent from the field overall. By comparison, the Cowboys shot 44 percent from the field this season.
As a team, Oklahoma St. had just two players in double figures with Marcus Smart leading the way with 18 points on 6-of-17 shooting. Phil Forte came off the bench and was a perfect example of what went wrong for the Cowboys in this game after making just two of his 10 shots in the game.
You can chalk it up to whatever you like, whether it be great defense by the Wildcats or just nerves on the part of the Cowboys, but Oklahoma St. was uncharacteristically bad on the offensive end and it was no doubt the difference in this game.