Ten Thoughts on the Weekend in College Football
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We hope to serve two purposes in this space this week. We can either 1) remind you that there are places good football is still being played or 2) show you that there are other people wallowing in misery like yourselves this morning. Who knows? Maybe we can do both.
1) Sometimes a program manages to maintain an identity through a coaching change. I think that is what Kansas State has managed to do. Bill Snyder gave K-State football an identity. They were tough, they were disciplined, they didn't beat themselves and they rose from the ashes. The program lost its way under Ron Prince. Snyder came back and re-established it before slipping a little and retiring. When the Wildcats hired Chris Klieman, some people had doubts. Yeah, he had won at North Dakota State, but this is a different level and a different animal. It wasn't flashy, but it was a fit. The Wildcats understood who they are and what they are looking for.Kansas State knocked off Oklahoma yesterday by racing to a 48-23 lead then hanging on for dear life as the Sooners scored 18 straight and came within a brush of the ball on an onside kick at the 9.5 yard mark of getting a chance to tie. But the Cats hung on. They are 5-2. They should win at least eight games and ten isn't out of the question. The purples are in love with Klieman as they should be. He should end up as the Big 12 coach of the year and long-term he may be able to become the first person not named Bill Snyder to have success as the head football coach at Kansas State.
The game also put Oklahoma in a situation where it now has to win out and get help to make the College Football Playoff (more on that in a bit).
2) Sometimes we all think a hire is terrible and have to end up admitting we were wrong. I did not think the Les Miles thing was going to work in Lawrence. And, yes, maybe it's too soon to say that it's going to. But the Jayhawks are 3-5, matching the most games they've won in a single season since 2009 (HOLY CRAP THAT IS UNBELIEVABLE). They may have a tough time adding another win to that mark, but Miles has given the fans some hope. Kansas didn't hire Miles to win ten games or conference titles in Lawrence. It hired him to give the program a ray of hope. He has taken them from one of the worst programs in college football history over the last ten years to a regular bad football team. And that's progress. And the way they won last night, holy cow...The Jayhawks were lining up for a game winning field goal.
Because Tech tried to lateral (I think) and Kansas recovered, it was a change of possession. Two seconds left. Another chance. This time, KU made the field goal to win 37-34. Losing a game in that fashion is a gut punch for anyone. Losing it in that fashion to Kansas is an unimaginable level of pain.3) If we're going to praise Kansas football in one post, it is our obligation to follow it up with a post that might make you guys feel a little bit better.