Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Something Special in the Little Apple

Don’t look now but Kansas State is marching to an appearance in the BCS title game. The Wildcats (8-0) are second in the BCS standings behind Alabama.

If you enjoy wide-open football, Kansas State isn’t your pleasure. If you appreciate a blue collar approach that stresses solid defense and limited turnovers, then the Wildcats are a delight.

Kansas State coach Bill Snyder will never coach sexy football. He will never draw attention to himself. He will never attractive a stable-full of blue-chip athletes to Manhattan, Kansas—known as the Little Apple. But what Snyder will do is win plenty of football games.

Snyder is 167-83-1 in his 21st year at Kansas State. The guy retired once and then came back for a second stint in 2009. Coaching twice at the same school is a rarity but it fits Snyder.

The 73-year-old doesn’t look like a coach but rather a high school teacher. His players enjoy playing for a guy who is a disciplinarian. He models his program after former Iowa football coach Hayden Fry who Snyder served under for a number of years as offensive coordinator. For example, have you noticed the Kansas State uniforms? They are exactly like Iowa uniforms except for the color scheme and logo.

Kansas State has a fairly favorable schedule the rest of the way. The Wildcats have home games remaining with Oklahoma State and Texas and road games with TCU and Baylor. They also benefit with no Big 12 Conference Championship game.

But can Kansas State function as a hunted team? Don’t count Snyder and his disciplined Wildcats out. They aren’t looking for style points just hard-working victories.

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