Blog Entry 120 -- Kansas State

Posted on: November 9, 2009 3:40 pm
Edited on: November 9, 2009 4:24 pm

I'm guilty. I was one of the pundits to pick Kansas State toward the bottom of the Big 12 North.
Boy, was I wrong!
Bill Snyder's team is sitting in first place of the Big 12 North at 4-2 and 6-4 overall and this week moved up to No. 43 in the latest 120 rankings.

K-State needs just one more victory to become bowl-eligible (The Wildcats played two FCS teams, so they must win seven games, instead of the usual six) and controls its own destiny to reach the Big 12 Championship game against Texas.

Emmanuel Lamur"At the beginning of the season, everyone expected us to not do so much, to have a losing season or whatever," cornerback Josh Moore said to The Manhattan Mercury, "but all the players on the team and the coaches have a lot of faith in what we're doing. We're number one in the North right now - you have to take us seriously."

After Bill Snyder retired in 2005, the Wildcats didn't have much success under former assistant Ron Prince. They made just one bowl game (Texas Bowl in 2006) and had two consecutive losing seasons. The school decided a change needed to be made and brought Snyder back.

Not much was expected heading into this season, in what was supposed to be a competitive Big 12, with one of the worst defensives in the nation. Kansas state gave up 36.8 points per game (110th in the nation) and was 117th in the nation overall. This year, the defense is 43rd in the nation overall and 45th in points allowed.

The biggest telling statistics is the Wildcats are plus-11 in turnover margin. Safties Emmanuel Lamur, who leads the team in tackles and recorded two INTs against Colorado, and Tysyn Hartman, who has four INTS, are the driving force behind the turnaround on defense.

We're playing at a very high level," Hartman said to The Kansas City Star a few weeks ago. "We don't make a lot of mistakes, and when we do we try to correct them as soon as possible. That's what leads to our performance."

Another nice surprise has been running back Daniel Thomas. After rushing for 185 yards in the victory over Kansas, he now has 1,087 yards on the season with 11 touchdowns.

Thomas was a star at Northwest Mississippi Community College before signing with Kansas State, but wasn't expected to contribute much with the return of three running backs.

"Here is a guy that did not know where Kansas was a few months ago and still does not know anything about Kansas, but he gives it everything he has got, and he played hard," said Snyder after the game. "Sometimes he plays like he is a linebacker, and I just appreciate his approach to the game. He is not an easy guy to get down, and that is for one reason and one reason alone. It does not have anything to do with speed or size or anything else, it is just tenacity and a desire to get that extra inch or foot."

Oregon ranking talk, Part II

Last week, we had the debate about which team should be ranked higher -- one-loss Oregon or an undefeated Boise State team? This week we have the Oregon/USC debate.

Both teams are 7-2, but Oregon destroyed USC two weeks ago 47-20. In all four polls (AP, Coaches, Harris and BCS), the Trojans are ranked ahead of the Ducks. Did the voters forget about the thrashing the Trojans took?

One poll that didn't follow the rest of the nation was the 120, where Oregon is ranked No. 11, USC is No. 12 and Ohio State is No. 13. The Trojans beat the Buckeyes 18-15 earlier in the season.


... The highest-ranked team with a losing record is Washington at No. 71. Despite being only 3-6, the Huskies beat USC, Idaho and Arizona. It also barely lost to LSU, Notre Dame and UCLA.

... The lowest-ranked team with a winning record is Louisiana-Lafayette at No. 101. The Rajin' Cajuns are 5-4, but their strength of schedule is ranked No. 116 out of 120 teams. They did beat Kansas State, but the rest of their wins are against Southern (FCS team) and three Sun Belt schools with a combined record of 4-22.

... One of the biggest games between non-Top 25 teams is this weekend when No. 40 Fresno State (6-3, 5-1) takes on No. 53 Nevada (6-3, 5-0). Both teams still have a shot to win the WAC, especially Nevada, which hasn't faced the Broncos yet.


Since: Jan 30, 2008
Posted on: November 10, 2009 11:39 pm 120 -- Kansas State

Folks used to say that about the South when the Big-12 started.

Look at the past the higher ranked team won 8 times:  97, 99, 00, 02, 04, 05, 06 and 08.

The lower ranked team won 5 times:  96 (S over N); 98 (S over N); 01 (N over S); 03 (N over S); 07 (S over N).

Wait a couple years and it most likely will swing the other way.

I do think the Cornhuskers would fare better then Wildcats in a championship game.

Since: Sep 20, 2009
Posted on: November 10, 2009 9:08 pm 120 -- Kansas State

 I really fail to see why so many see the big 12 north as "Weak" yes they are weaker than the south in the last few years but I do think that these teams would be a wrecking ball if they played in the WAC , MWC, ACC, or big East conf USA  granted Nebraska has and Ksu  have not been their normal selves but they will be back and may have years better than Texas next year as they are on the rise and Texas is at the crest.

Since: Oct 15, 2007
Posted on: November 10, 2009 6:18 pm 120 -- Kansas State

that was dumb.  we could easily argue the same thing about the SEC, but since the media...and the country....are so hyped up on tim tebow and nick saban the SEC gets oogled at all season long.  tim tebow is worthless, alabama is a flukey team at best. 

Since: Oct 15, 2008
Posted on: November 10, 2009 4:11 pm 120 -- Kansas State

Beacause a lot of the so-called experts had dubbed this OU team One the greatest teams ever. Plus, nobody gave KSU a shot in this game.

Yes, KSU had high expectations for the year, but experts had already given OU the national NC before we played in Kansas city.

Since: Dec 3, 2006
Posted on: November 10, 2009 11:31 am

Poll Debate

Why do you sports writers make these big deals about who is ranked where every week based on individual matchups that happened previously?!!  It is pretty ignorant because the way that the polls are structured is to reward those teams based on how they perform week to week.  Somebody who loses one week will move down while someone who wins moves up, and they are unbiased in previous matches because of the way they are designed.  Those that move down stay down until someone at the top move up.  Arguing why the trojans move up above Oregon makes no sense because it really revolves around how many other teams in the polls lost as well, and nothing to do with who is the better team. 

And please stop thinking we are idioits by starting some sort of conspiracy as to why the Buckeyes should be below the Trojans whom they lost to in the begining of the season.  I understand as writers you have to find something to write but remember the public wants news not filler garbage!!!

Since: Nov 22, 2007
Posted on: November 10, 2009 11:18 am 120 -- Kansas State

Why do people keep calling KSU beating OU in 2003 a huge upset?  Does anybody remember what KSU's expectations were going into that year?  They were on the short list of national title contenders that year and had AA candidates at QB and RB and were expected to win the Big 12 that year.

Since: Oct 15, 2008
Posted on: November 10, 2009 8:01 am 120 -- Kansas State

Bill Snyder has taken a team that had no direction, no leadership and has turned this program around. Ron Prince drove this program into the ground by isolating certain players and had zero focus on the future.

Yes, Bill is taking advantage of a weak Big 12 north. But, just remember, this will be his worst team. It is all upside from here and there is a lot of upside, especially if they qualify for a bowl game. Snyder is a genius because he uses the bowl practices to build the future.

Since: Jan 2, 2007
Posted on: November 10, 2009 7:59 am 120 -- Kansas State

HAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHA that's funny!!! You called yourself an expert! You owe me a new monitor!!!

That's all I have to say.

Since: Sep 17, 2006
Posted on: November 10, 2009 2:16 am 120 -- Kansas State

Kansas State was tenth in the nation, on a six game winning streak where they were demolising everyone they played, they had a ridiculous defense, Ell Roberson and Darren Sproles. Daniel Thomas is good, but he's not Sproles. The defense is good, but it's nowhere near 2003 caliber.

Since: Oct 15, 2009
Posted on: November 9, 2009 11:11 pm 120 -- Kansas State

the north is never given a chance, but whether it be nebraska or kansas state to make the title game they have a chance.  Remember 2003 when OU was the "best team ever" and practically "unbeatable" and kstate destroyed them?  

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