Sunday Rewind: K-State 52, Miami 13


Kansas State didn’t just beat Miami on Saturday. It destroyed the Hurricanes.

The Wildcats came into the game at Bill Snyder Family Stadium as a touchdown favorite and left with a convincing 52-13 victory.

How did it happen? Here’s a look at all that and more in this week’s Sunday Rewind:

THREE THOUGHTS
1. K-State should move up quite a few spots in the Top 25 polls next week. A few teams ranked in front of the No. 21 Wildcats lost on Saturday. A few others struggled with lesser teams. I could see them jumping as many as seven spots. Two weeks is a small sample size, but K-State has two lopsided victories for voters to look at. There aren’t many teams that have scored 50 points in both their games, with one of them coming against an opponent from a BCS conference. Miami isn’t the program it once was, but any time you blow out the Hurricanes people take notice.

2. Collin Klein will enter the conversation for national awards next week. The senior quarterback threw for 210 yards, rushed for 71 yards and scored four touchdowns. Klein turned in a performance that is hard to beat, and he did so while attempting just 11 passes and playing barely more than three quarters.

3. Miami fans have got to hate the fact Arthur Brown got away. Seriously, how mad are you today if you’re a Hurricanes fan? The K-State senior linebacker made 17 tackles in two full seasons with Miami. Since he transferred to K-State he has made 16 tackles in two full games against his former team. That total would be even higher had he not been shortchanged on a few tackles in Miami last year. But he was fabulous once again Saturday. He made 10 tackles, recovered a fumble and had a sack. He is one of the best linebackers in the country.


PLAYER EVALUATIONS
A few that were good:
1. John Hubert
The junior running back had his second straight big game of the season and second straight big game against Miami. Hubert rushed for 106 yards and a touchdown on 19 carries Saturday. He ran hard and for a while was picking up close to 10 yards per carry. Not bad under any circumstance, and very impressive coming off a 152-yard game last week. A year ago, he rushed for 166 yards against Miami.

“I have more confidence than I did last year,” Hubert said. “It feels great to have two 100-yard games. I just want to keep that up and keep helping out my team the best way I can.”

2. Tyler Lockett
The sophomore receiver caught three passes for 59 yards and picked up 16 yards on the ground on an end-around play. He would have had a touchdown, too, but Miami illegally tackled him as he approached the goal line on a 44-yard pass. It was good to see K-State coaches put his versatility to good use.

3. Collin Klein
It’s not often that a quarterback completes nine passes and throws for 210 yards. Klein was incredibly efficient on Saturday. Other than an incomplete pass and an interception, there was nothing to complain about.

4. Arthur Brown
Brown made some vicious tackles on Saturday. His sack of Stephen Morris in the second half will be shown plenty more times at K-State games this season.

5. Adam Davis
Nobody made a bigger impact in Miami’s backfield than Davis. The defensive end supplied consistent pressure on Morris and finished with two sacks. He also forced two fumbles. It’s been slow going at times for Davis since he had to sit out a year following an injury, but it looks like he has come around.

6. Offensive line
Anytime a team rushes for 288 yards you know the offensive line is doing a good job up front. A good accomplishment considering Boston Stiverson and Nick Puetz aren’t playing right now.

“They are doing excellent,” Hubert said. “They are opening up holes and making it easy for me.”

7. Justin Tuggle
The former quarterback made his first big hit as a linebacker. He made two tackles for loss and pursued Morris relentlessly for an impressive sack.

8. Daniel Sams
He’s scored three rushing touchdowns and only played in two quarters. The backup quarterback has a nose for the end zone.


A few that were bad:
1. Chris Harper
He didn’t play poorly, but he didn’t play all that well, either. On a day like this, when almost everything went right, that will land you in the bad section. After his nine-yard effort against Miami, he has 33 receiving yards on the season. That means the senior is really going to have to work hard (and average about 90 yards a game) the rest of the way if he wants to reach his goal of 1,000 yards.

2. Jarell Childs
Childs plays a lot at linebacker in K-State’s nickel defense, and K-State used its nickel defense a lot Saturday, but he only managed three tackles.

3. Tre Walker
Another mediocre game from Walker. He provides plenty of leadership and is a factor even when he isn’t around the ball, but it would have been nice to see him get more than two tackles a week after he only had one.

4. Travis Tannahill
The tight end didn’t catch a pass against Miami. That wasn’t all his fault (he streaked down the middle of the field and was wide open for a touchdown on the first drive, but Klein didn’t see him) but he needs to be more involved. He looked good blocking, though.

Coaching critique
Everything about the behind-the-back pass Klein attempted to Harper on a trick play at the goal line in the second quarter was bizarre. But the strangest part came before it even began, when Snyder rushed up the sideline to call a timeout so he could tell his team to run it. The play forced K-State into a long field goal that Anthony Cantele missed, and allowed Miami to pull within 24-6 at halftime. Had the Hurricanes scored a touchdown on the opening drive of the second half we would have had a different ballgame. K-State played so well that the disastrous play didn’t matter. But that is a situation where Snyder needed to stay conservative. Run straight ahead with Klein, and chances are good K-State scores a touchdown. If he misses, Cantele gets an easy field goal to put K-State up 27-3. Bad decision. But let’s move on. Other than that play, the coaching was brilliant. Dana Dimel mixed it up on offense and called a great game. And the first-team defense didn’t allow a touchdown for the second straight game.

This and that
— The Wildcats lined up with an empty backfield a few times on Saturday. It seemed strange to see five receivers on the field at the same time, but it worked pretty well.

Klein hit Curry Sexton with a touchdown out of the spread formation and ran for a few nice gains on designed quarterback draws.

“I love it,” Klein said. “It’s just something else to have in our toolbox. With us, it’s something different people haven’t seen as much. It gives us some different opportunities to take advantage of. We’ll see how it develops.”

It did result in one bad play, though. In the second half, K-State put four receivers on the right and Harper on the left. He faced single coverage and Klein decided to throw to him before the play began. He lofted the ball to him on a streak route, but the pass never had a chance. Miami came away with an interception.

Still, K-State players hope to use it more in the coming weeks.

“That is something we have worked on all week,” Sexton said. “Week in and week out, depending on what we think we can run you are going to see different sets out there. We didn’t use any five wide last week but we did today because we thought it would work well in third-and-long situations. You spread the field out and Collin is going to make plays.”

– Zach Trujillo, a backup tight end, made a 58 yard catch on Saturday. K-State coaches have got to like the fact they have multiple tight ends capable of catching passes.

– Curry Sexton scored his first touchdown of the season on a 27-yard pass. It was a special moment for the Abilene receiver, who has worked tirelessly to become K-State’s No. 4 receiver this year. After he caught the pass, he sprinted around the end zone like a mad man. His teammates joked that they were worried he might run out of the stadium.

“I don’t know what I was doing,” Sexton later admitted. “I just caught it and kept running. I was so excited I didn’t know what celebration to put on so I just kind of ran around the goal post.”

Key play you may have overlooked
With K-State leading 31-6 in the second half, its defense came up with an impressive play that showed just how unlikely a Miami comeback would be. Morris dropped back to pass, but couldn’t find anyone open. So he looked to his left, but K-State’s pass rush was coming from that direction. His only choice was to scramble to the right. He didn’t move fast and kept waiting for a receiver to get open down field, but no one ever did so he had to throw the ball away. Good coverage, good rush, good play.

Statistically speaking
52 — The number of points scored by K-State and the yardage of Ryan Doerr’s lone punt in the fourth quarter.

Quote to note
“K-State is a good team upfront and all the way around. They did not do anything that really surprised us, they just executed what they wanted to do and you have to take your hat off to them.” — Miami offensive lineman Jonathan Feliciano.