Tag Archives: kansas state oklahoma football game

No. 15 Wildcats upset No. 6 Sooners

23 Sep

Quarterback Collin Klein and the Wildcats outran the Sooners on Saturday night, flourishing yet again in their underdog role.

In the last couple seasons, fast-starting Kansas State teams encountered what some would consider harsh reality checks – a 58-17 defeat by Oklahoma in 2011, a 48-13 whooping by Nebraska in 2010.

This year, it looks like no one is stopping the Wildcats. That idea gained significant credence Saturday night in Norman, where Kansas State won, 24-19, for the first time since 1997.

Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops was 14-0 against ranked teams there going into the game against the 15th-ranked Wildcats.

Now he is 14-1.

Kansas State knocked off the Sooners for the first time since 2003, so this win is clearly one that will stick with the program for years to come. Though the current players only get to enjoy the warm, fuzzy feeling for the next 24 hours or so, the longer-term effects of such a victory are not going anywhere.

“It gives us confidence and momentum,” Kansas State running back John Hubert said. “We just want to rest and keep getting better. We are one of those teams that can be in the top five easily, but we like to be underdogs. It gives us confidence to go out and play hard.”

On Saturday the Wildcats’ offense continued its trend of finishing strong, scoring 10 points in the second quarter and 14 points in the fourth. The Kansas State defense held the Sooners to one score per quarter – a field goal in each segment of the first half, a touchdown with the extra point in the third quarter, and a touchdown sans two-point conversion in the fourth.

Flashy plays are what make the highlight reels, but the proper execution of fundamentals ended up being what won the game for the Wildcats – and what lost it for the Sooners.

Oklahoma quarterback Landry Jones fumbled and threw an interception, while backup quarterback Blake Bell also fumbled. Kansas State took advantage of the extra opportunities and offered none to the Sooners in return. By my count, the Wildcats allowed 14 passing plays of 10 yards or more. That number still sounds a bit high, but in fact, that stat is 44 percent lower than what Kansas State gave up to Oklahoma last year – 25 such plays. Also, the Wildcats sacked Jones, forced a fumble by him and intercepted him.

Troubling for the Sooners and confidence-inspiring for the Kansas State is the fact that the Wildcats converted in seven third-down situations. Two of those came during the final drive of the game and were essential in allowing Kansas State to run out the clock and keep the ball out of the hands of the Oklahoma offense.

“It was just one of those things where we were finally able to move the ball in the fourth quarter,” Kansas State quarterback Collin Klein said. “We knew we had to get it; we credit our offensive line for giving us the ability to let us to what we had to do. We were able to execute when we had to execute.”

The Sooners finished with 386 yards of offense, but the Wildcats nearly equally that total with 362. Moreover, Kansas State actually displayed a much more balanced attack than Oklahoma, who relied on passing for over two-thirds of its yardage.

The Wildcats rushed for 213 yards and passed for 149. Hubert went for 130, racking up plenty of those yards after contact that make him so valuable, and Klein added 79. Both found the end zone on the ground. Through the air, Klein completed 13 of 21 passes, spreading the ball around to six different targets.

Kansas State returned to its normal occupation of ball control specialist, retaining possession for 34:37 compared to 25:13 for Oklahoma. The win lifted the Wildcats to 4-0 on the year and 1-0 in Big 12 play. Certainly, it was a heck of a way to kick off the conference portion of the schedule.

For their part, the Sooners seemed stunned.

“It’s kind of uncharacteristic stuff for us there,” Oklahoma offensive lineman Gabe Ikard said. “We just put the defense in bad spots. That game, the offense we played, we didn’t play well enough for this team to win the game. You just have to look at it and it’s just kind of some weird stuff that happened. But you just have to move on.”

The Wildcats will have to move on as well, but surely, they will do so a bit reluctantly. Saturday is a night they won’t soon forget.

Wildcats take painful loss on homecoming weekend

29 Oct

In the first seven minutes of the ball game, it appeared all the critics might be right about Kansas State. At the end, they were … at least about this particular game. The scoreboard read 58-17 Oklahoma. It was a devastating blow to the previously undefeated Wildcats.

“Right now my thoughts are, ‘Just forget about it,’” said wide receiver Tyler Lockett. “We were not ready to play, and we got beat badly, and nobody wants to lose like that.”

On homecoming weekend in Manhattan, the defense that had been so highly regarded took a horrible beating. The Sooners’ offense ran rampant, gaining 690 yards. 520 of those came through the air, the worst aerial attack ever by an opponent at Bill Snyder Family Stadium.

While the skill and speed of No. 11 Oklahoma did not shock the Wildcats, they certainly did not expect the outcome they got on Saturday.

“We knew what kind of a team they were coming in,” said quarterback Collin Klein. “It wasn’t a surprise, but frustrating, not being able to execute like we were. We were struggling, and to watch them come right back – it was hard.”

Largely thanks to two interceptions by Nigel Malone in the first half, the No. 10 Wildcats trailed just 23-16 going into the locker room at halftime. As the second half progressed, it became clear who made better halftime adjustments.

In the final 30 minutes, the Wildcats did not score; the Sooners scored five touchdowns. Kansas State recorded just 32 yards of offense in the second half. Oklahoma got more than 10 times that number – 378, to be exact.

While those statistics make the home team defense look pretty awful, coach Bill Snyder said made it clear that it was a team loss.

“We have been able to, through the course of seven ball games, to possess the ball and move the ball well enough to keep people’s offense off the field a substantial amount of time, and we were not able to do that,” Snyder said. “This wasn’t totally a defensive malfunction to the degree that it cost us the ball game. We lost the ball game on both sides of the ball.”

Interestingly enough, it did not start out that way.

To begin the game, Oklahoma marched down the field on consecutive possessions while Kansas State answered with three-and-outs. The Sooners took a 14-0 lead.

A minute later, the Wildcats took advantage of the Sooners kick out of bounds. They got a field. It was 14-3. It was a modest beginning for the Kansas State offense, to be sure.

On the first play of the second quarter, the Wildcats committed a false start, the kind of attention-to-detail penalty that coach Bill Snyder cannot stand. On the second play of that quarter, quarterback Collin Klein weaved through the Oklahoma defense for a 42-yard touchdown rush.

All of a sudden, it was 14-10 Oklahoma.

On the Sooners’ next possession, cornerback Nigel Malone picked off Oklahoma quarterback Landry Jones, setting the Wildcats up for – wait for it – a 2-yard touchdown plunge by Klein.

Just like that, Kansas State led Oklahoma 17-14.

After giving up 17 consecutive points, the Sooners responded promptly with a touchdown of their own. They only went up by three points, however, as defensive tackle Raphael Guidry blocked the extra point. It was his third such play of the season after blocking two Texas Tech field goals a couple weeks earlier.

With the Sooners leading 20-17, the Wildcats sustained a nice long drive only to miss a 25-yard field goal. On Oklahoma’s ensuing drive, Jones threw another interception. It was Malone again, good for his sixth pick of the season.

Unfortunately for Kansas State, that possession yielded nothing after running back John Hubert fumbled and Oklahoma recovered. Only able to get a field goal from the possession, the Sooners went into the locker room with a six-point advantage.

Though the Wildcats did a decent job containing the Sooners in the first half and moving the ball themselves, they could not do either in the second half.

“We couldn’t move the ball, and we couldn’t stop them; it’s pretty simple,” Snyder said. “Every one of our victories has really been a team victory, it truly has, and this was a team loss. We struggled on both sides of the ball, very much. Take your pick.”

With Oklahoma State next on the dock, though, the Wildcats cannot dwell on this debacle. That sentiment is unanimous.

“We’ve just got to come together on Monday and bounce back,” said cornerback David Garrett.