Sunday Rewind: K-State 41, Iowa State 7

Sophomore quarterback Daniel Sams and the Kansas State Wildcats played their most complete games of the season against Iowa State.

At the moment, Kansas State is in a class of its own within the Big 12.

The Wildcats are clearly better than the conference’s struggling teams. They have blown out West Virginia and Iowa State and they will be favored against TCU and Kansas. As long as they take care of business against the Horned Frogs and Jayhawks they will reach bowl eligibility.

But the Wildcats also appear a notch below the conference’s contenders. They have already lost to Texas, Baylor and Oklahoma State. They are three-point underdogs against Texas Tech and they will likely be underdogs against Oklahoma. They probably need to beat the Red Raiders to have any chance of finishing in the top half of the Big 12 standings.

A 41-7 clobbering of Iowa State proved the Wildcats are improving. They have won back-to-back games, and their defense has gotten better each and every week. They will have momentum and confidence on their side when they head to Texas Tech, fresh off its first two losses, next week. Can they take advantage and once again prove their progress? Or will they stay where they are?

It will be an important game.

Here is a look at all that and more in this week’s Sunday Rewind:
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Sunday Rewind: Kansas State finds passing groove in 35-12 victory over West Virginia

Kansas State put Tyler Lockett and Tramaine Thompson to good use on Saturday. The Wildcats’ top two receivers combined for four touchdowns.

This was definitely a crossroads game for Kansas State. A loss would have made it very difficult for the Wildcats to keep their spirits up and to reach bowl eligibility. Instead, they pounded West Virginia in the second half for a 35-12 victory and now go into their final five games with momentum.

Tramaine Thompson and Tyler Lockett were back on the field together for the first time in a month. Jake Waters looked like the quarterback who originally won the starting quarterback job in the preseason. And K-State looked like a new team.

Here is a look at all that and more in this week’s Sunday Rewind:
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Football Friday: Mid-season awards, healthy receivers, a starting 5 and Halloween advice

It’s time for another Football Friday. Who else is excited?

I thought about handing out some mid-season awards as a build-up to the questions this week, but then someone sent along an e-mail asking for a mid-season MVP. So, no intro needed. Let’s get to the questions.


That’s a tough one. It’s hard to name a MVP with K-State off to a 2-4 start, quarterbacks coming in and out and key players suffering injuries. A case could be made for Tyler Lockett, Daniel Sams, Blake Slaughter, Ryan Mueller and maybe even a few others.

I’m inclined to choose Lockett. Even though he has missed two games with a hamstring injury he ranks fourth in the Big 12 with 475 receiving yards and set a single-game program record with 237 receiving yards at Texas. Those numbers are too good to ignore, plus he has developed into a strong leader.

On the defensive side of the ball, I would narrowly choose Mueller over Slaughter. Mueller leads the team with 8.5 tackles for loss, five sacks and three quarterback hurries. And when he makes a big play, it is highlight worthy.
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When healthy, Kansas State expects a lot from Tramaine Thompson, Tyler Lockett

Tyler Lockett and Tramaine Thompson are expected to return to Kansas State’s lineup on Saturday. The Wildcats missed them while they were out.

Kansas State looked like a different football team without Tyler Lockett and Tramaine Thompson.

That was to be expected, of course. Not only did the Wildcats have to get by without their top two receivers, they were also down their top two returners. With them on the sidelines the past two games, K-State has been unable to throw the ball deep or aggressively return kicks and punts.

Lockett, a junior captain, and Thompson, a senior speedster, are both expected to play against West Virginia on Saturday. The Wildcats will welcome their return in several areas.

Here is a statistical look at the impact they have made on games this season:
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The Week Ahead: Kansas State looking for confidence-boosting win vs. West Virginia

Kansas State’s hopes of a second-half turnaround begin on Saturday against West Virginia.

The first half of the season didn’t go the way Kansas State hoped it would.

First came an unexpected loss to North Dakota State. Next came narrow defeats against Texas, Oklahoma State and Baylor. The result is a 2-4 overall record and three-straight losses in Big 12.

With a favorable closing schedule, the Wildcats are hoping for a stronger second half and another trip to a bowl game. Both certainly seem possible. They have the look of an improving football team (fourth-quarter leads over ranked teams in back-to-back games and solid defensive numbers) but they need to learn how to win close games.

The journey begins on Saturday against West Virginia, a team that has looked excellent at home and shaky on the road.

Here is a look at that and everything else you need to know about the week ahead:
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The Week Ahead: Can anyone stop Baylor?

You’ve got to hand it to Wofford. The FCS team from Spartanburg, S.C. is the only team that has held Baylor’s offensive juggernaut under 70 points this season.

The Bears managed just 69 points in a blowout win over Wofford. They have since gone for 70, 70 and 73. They are averaging almost 71 points a game. They are averaging nearly 50 points in the first half. Bryce Petty, Lache Seastrunk and Tevin Reese have their offense rolling.

Can anyone stop them? Kansas State will try on Saturday.

Here is a look at that and everything else you need to know about the week ahead:
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Sunday Rewind: Okla. State 33, K-State 29

Kansas State lost another close game at Oklahoma State on Saturday. The Wildcats committed penalties left and right and turned the ball far too often. In the end, they couldn’t overcome those mistakes and lost 33-29.

There will be some soul-searching after this one. The Wildcats feel like they let one slip away, which they couldn’t afford to do after losing to North Dakota State and Texas. Next up is Baylor, a team that appears unstoppable on offense. It will be interesting to see how K-State moves on from another agonizing loss and prepares for the toughest opponent of the season.

And with that, here is a look at all that and more in this week’s Sunday Rewind:
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Sunday Rewind: K-State 37, UMass 7


Kansas State’s 37-7 victory over Massachusetts went as expected. The Wildcats were heavy favorites, and they trounced the lowly Minutemen in a game that was never close in the second half.

There were good plays. There were bad plays. You could take this game in a number of different ways.

For now, let’s just focus on the most pertinent question: Is K-State ready for its Big 12 opener against Texas?

On one hand, the Wildcats could use some work on defense. And Jake Waters needs to stop throwing interceptions. On the other hand, what’s going on in Austin right now is a soap-opera. The Longhorns are coming off back-to-back brutal losses and the fan base is furious. Coming off back-to-back wins, the Wildcats are in much better shape.

Again, you could answer the question in a number of different ways.

Here is what K-State coach Bill Snyder said Saturday night: “We need to get a whole lot better real quick. Real quick. Texas is good. I understand they are going through some tough times, but don’t dare underestimate the University of Texas. They will be a handful for anybody.”

And with that, here is a look at all that and more in this week’s Sunday Rewind:
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The Week Ahead: Kansas State expected to roll against lowly Massachusetts

Kansas State is a 39-point favorite against Massachusetts. It should get plenty of opportunities to celebrate another win on Saturday.

Kansas State addressed several areas of concern during a 48-27 victory over Louisiana-Lafayette last weekend.

It should be able to get totally right against Massachusetts on Saturday.

The Minutemen are coming off a shutout-loss at Wisconsin and a home loss to Maine, a Football Championship Subdivision opponent. Wildcats football coach Bill Snyder likes to get his backups on the field during nonconference games. K-State should be able to build a nice lead and get plenty of new faces out there in this one. The better it plays, the earlier it can begin looking ahead to its Big 12 opener at Texas.

Here is a look at everything else you need to know about the week ahead:
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Sunday Rewind: K-State 48, Louisiana 27


It was an up-and-down game for Kansas State. The Wildcats raced to a 34-3 lead early in the second half, but had to hang on in the fourth quarter after Louisiana-Lafayette pulled to within 14.

The result was much better than a week ago, and players think it was a step in the right direction. There was a lot to like. With lowly Massachusetts up next, K-State will almost certainly enter Big 12 play at 2-1.

Question is: can it become a more consistent team by then? K-State played poorly at times on Saturday, so there is plenty of room for improvement. As Louisiana-Lafayette coach Mark Hudpseth pointed out afterward: If you take away the three touchdowns that came on special teams and defense, it was a fairly even game. The Wildcats should remain motivated during practice this week.

A look at all that and more in this week’s Sunday Rewind:
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