NCAA FB

Title at stake (maybe) for K-State against Texas

Share This Story

   
 

MANHATTAN, Kan. (AP)

Updates. With AP Photos.By DAVE SKRETTAAP Sports Writer

There will be a time not long from now that Kansas State's players will gather to reflect on the season, one that's brought unimaginable joy along with soul-crushing heartache.

It's not that time just yet.

Despite a loss two weeks ago to Baylor that knocked the seventh-ranked Wildcats from national title consideration, they still have plenty to play for Saturday against No. 23 Texas: The third conference championship in school history and an automatic BCS bowl berth.

Not a bad consolation prize for a team expected to finish somewhere in the middle of the Big 12, but that rose to No. 1 in the BCS standings before that lousy night in Waco.

''I haven't reflected back on the season. I haven't reflected forward,'' Kansas State coach Bill Snyder said this week. ''I have reflected on our most recent game and our preparation for the game coming up. That's where my attention has been.''

It certainly hasn't been on No. 12 Oklahoma, which plays TCU earlier Saturday.

If the Sooners lose to the Horned Frogs, the Wildcats (10-1, 7-1) will already have wrapped up at least a share of the Big 12 championship and, due to tiebreakers, the BCS bid, long before Collin Klein and the rest of the senior class is introduced to a sellout crowd.

''It's going to be an emotional day for me,'' said Klein, who is widely expected to be invited to New York City next week for the Heisman Trophy ceremony.

''I know being around here now for, this is my fifth year, you see a lot of players enter and exit in their tenure, and now my time has come in that sense, and that's not an easy thing,'' Klein said. ''I have so many fond memories of my time here. It's going to be hard.''

The Sooners are comfortable favorites to beat TCU, which means the Wildcats are certainly preparing for the Longhorns (8-3, 5-3) as if they'll need to win themselves.

Kansas State's only Big 12 title came in 2003, when it beat then-No. 1 Oklahoma when the conference still had a championship game. Its only other league title came in 1934, during the old Big Six days, when Lynn ''Pappy'' Waldorf was the coach.

More common have been the kind of losing seasons that brought Snyder to Manhattan, Kan., in the late-1980s, and brought him back from a brief retirement a few years ago.

''We've just been fortunate, and it's been good fortune,'' Snyder said. ''We've played well most of the time, but again, Texas is the dominant football program and you have to have good fortune to beat teams like that, and particularly in this conference.''

There is plenty at stake besides the championship, too.

Start with Klein, who until a couple of poor showings - including a disastrous three-interception game against Baylor - was the Heisman frontrunner. Now, he may need to play the best game of his career to upstage Notre Dame's Manti Te'o and Texas A&M's Johnny Manziel, who won't have the chance to impress voters Saturday with their regular seasons already finished.

''It's hard to get away from that stuff,'' Klein said, ''especially in this day and age, with social media and everything around, but it's just a matter of being the best I possibly can.''

The Wildcats have beaten the Longhorns four straight times, so for Texas, there's the desire to put an end to several years' worth of frustration.

''I watched a couple of those games,'' Texas cornerback Quandre Diggs said. ''They're a great-coached team. They come to play each and every week. I feel like they're mature guys. They play each and every week with a lot of intensity. It's kind of crazy to see our record against them.

''We can go out and change that,'' Diggs said. ''I have three more years to play these guys. I hope to change that while I'm here.''

The Longhorns, who plan to start Case McCoy over David Ash at quarterback, also will be trying to improve their bowl destination. They're tied for third in the Big 12 with Oklahoma State, which plays Baylor on Saturday and beat Texas earlier this season.

''We're going in as underdogs,'' Texas offensive lineman Mason Walters said. ''Kansas State has played good ball almost all year long. They're a talented team. They're an experienced team. Great quarterback, really solid defense. I really think this week is more about accepting the challenge and going out and putting everything you have on the line.

''Your pride is put out there,'' Walters said. ''They're a team that can blow you out, or you can go out and give yourself a chance to win. Last time I went to Manhattan, it wasn't a fun experience. Last year we had a close game here where we fought hard. I expect more something like that. We're going to give everything we have for this regular-season game.''

Tagged: Baylor, Oklahoma, Kansas State, Kansas, Texas, Collin Klein

Related Stories

Member Comments

Please note by clicking on "Post comment" you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Use and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be Polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator.

powered by

College Football Pick'em on FOX


NCAA FB Videos

Sumlin annoyed by media's Manziel questions Posted: Jul 16, 2014
Kevin Sumlin responds to questions about life after Johnny Football by toying wi...

AJ Pasquale's journey back to UCLA Posted: Jun 17, 2014
UCLA football ops intern AJ Pasquale describes his own personal journey after th...

Winston issued adult civil citation Posted: Apr 30, 2014
Get the latest news surrounding Jameis Winston's recent shoplifting fiasco.

Get Inside the Locker Room with Scout.com

More Than Sports on MSN

Fox Sports Store

    itemName itemURL imageSrc price itemDescription
    Nike Florida Gators Gridiron 2012 Team Issue T-Shirt - Royal Blue http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Florida_Gators/browse/featuredproduct/759777/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_759000/ff_759777_xl.jpg&w=100 24.95 Nike Florida Gators Gridiron 2012 Team Issue T-Shirt - Royal Blue
    Nike Michigan State Spartans Football 2012 Team Issue T-Shirt - White http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Michigan_State_Spartans/browse/featuredproduct/760171/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_760000/ff_760171_xl.jpg&w=100 24.95 Nike Michigan State Spartans Football 2012 Team Issue T-Shirt - White
    Nike USC Trojans Fight On My School T-Shirt - Cardinal http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_USC_Trojans/browse/featuredproduct/761373/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_761000/ff_761373_xl.jpg&w=100 24.95 Nike USC Trojans Fight On My School T-Shirt - Cardinal
    Nike Alabama Crimson Tide Elite Force Coaches Sideline Performance Polo - Crimson http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Alabama_Crimson_Tide/browse/featuredproduct/829709/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_829000/ff_829709_xl.jpg&w=100 64.95 Nike Alabama Crimson Tide Elite Force Coaches Sideline Performance Polo - Crimso..
    Nike LSU Tigers Elite Force Coaches Sideline Performance Polo - Purple http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_LSU_Tigers/browse/featuredproduct/829740/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_829000/ff_829740_xl.jpg&w=100 49.99 Nike LSU Tigers Elite Force Coaches Sideline Performance Polo - Purple
    Nike Oklahoma Sooners Legacy 91 Dri-FIT Adjustable Coaches Cap - Crimson http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Oklahoma_Sooners/browse/featuredproduct/830935/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_830000/ff_830935_xl.jpg&w=100 21.95 Nike Oklahoma Sooners Legacy 91 Dri-FIT Adjustable Coaches Cap - Crimson
    adidas Notre Dame Fighting Irish Hot Sideline Jacket - Navy Blue http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Notre_Dame_Fighting_Irish/browse/featuredproduct/861243/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_861000/ff_861243_xl.jpg&w=100 69.95 adidas Notre Dame Fighting Irish Hot Sideline Jacket - Navy Blue
    adidas Nebraska Cornhuskers Sideline Hot Quarter Zip Jacket - Scarlet http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Nebraska_Cornhuskers/browse/featuredproduct/861247/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_861000/ff_861247_xl.jpg&w=100 69.95 adidas Nebraska Cornhuskers Sideline Hot Quarter Zip Jacket - Scarlet
    Nike Alabama Crimson Tide 2012 BCS National Champions Players Locker Room Snapback Hat - Charcoal/Black http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Alabama_Crimson_Tide/browse/featuredproduct/1087345/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1087000/ff_1087345_xl.jpg&w=100 29.95 Nike Alabama Crimson Tide 2012 BCS National Champions Players Locker Room Snapba..
    Nike Alabama Crimson Tide 2012 BCS National Champions Locker Room T-Shirt - Ash http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Alabama_Crimson_Tide/browse/featuredproduct/1093431/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1093000/ff_1093431_xl.jpg&w=100 24.95 Nike Alabama Crimson Tide 2012 BCS National Champions Locker Room T-Shirt - Ash