While both Texas and Iowa State enter Big 12 play with 10-3 non-conference records, neither is ranked in the top 25 and both have a lot to prove in conference play, which starts for both teams Wednesday night in the Erwin Center.
The Longhorns, after losing three players to the first-round of the NBA Draft, choose to lighten up their usual tough non-conference schedule in an effort to get their six freshmen, all of whom receive minutes, accustomed to the college game.
As a result, Texas does not have the type of signature win to impress either the pollsters or the selection committee, as they were embarrassed in their biggest showcase of the season, an 82-63 drubbing at North Carolina.
Iowa State, meanwhile, is in a similar boat, with a string of wins over quality mid-major programs and lower-ranked BCS teams but a decisive 76-66 defeat at the hands of Michigan, the only nationally ranked team they have faced this season.
Under second-year head coach Fred Hoiberg, the Cyclones have tried to make up for a lack of basketball recruiting base by accepting transfers from Michigan State (SG Chris Allen) and Minnesota (PF Royce White), as the two basketball vagabonds currently lead the team in scoring.
Texas, meanwhile, will try to speed up the tempo of the game and put the balls in their talented back-court of freshman PG Myck Kabongo and junior G J'Covan Brown, two of the Longhorns top three scorers and their top two assist men.
The 8:00 PM game will be televised nationally on ESPNU.