College Hoops Player of the Day for Thursday, March 15, 2012
Kansas State surged past Southern Miss late in the second half, advancing to the round of 32 against East region #1 seed, Syracuse with a 70-64 victory over the Golden Eagles.
Point guard Angel Rodriguez scored seven of his 13 points in the final 2:10 of regulation, but it was Rodney McGruder, who scored 18 of his game high 30 points in the first half that kept the Wildcats in the game.
McGruder was 11 of 16 from the field with two 3-pointers and 6-for-8 from the charity stripe. McGruder's pair of treys were the only shots the Wildcats made from beyond the arc, going just 2-12 as a team. The team's high scorer throughout the season, McGruder added four rebounds and four steals for the Wildcats, who won the game at the free throw line, canning 26 of 34 freebies to Southern Miss' 12 of 17.