KSU Bounces Back Big!


There are many story lines baked into this game.  First and foremost, Brent Venables faced his alma mater for the first time as head coach of the Sooners.  That’s right, Venables is a Kansas State graduate.  He played for Bill Snyder.  He coached for Bill Snyder from 1993 to 1998 when Bob Stoops lured him away to Oklahoma.  December of 1998 still rankles Kansas State fans.  Coach Venables left KSU on the eve of the Big 12 Championship.  He left to be the defensive coordinator for newly hired Bob Stoops at Oklahoma.  Kansas State was undefeated and number nine in the country.  A win in this game would have put them in the National Championship conversation.  Kansas State went into the most important game of that season without their defensive coordinator and lost in double overtime to Texas A&M.  They turned around and lost to Drew Brees and the Boilermakers in the Alamo Bowl.  This was only one year removed from KSU’s dismantling of Donovan McNabb’s Orangemen in the Fiesta Bowl.  Venables went on to win a National Championship with the Sooners a few years later along with two championships at Clemson.  Still, Venables and Bill Snyder remained cordial as Snyder willingly mentored his long-time disciple.  They even traded messages coming into Saturday Night’s game.


Many Oklahoma fans thought Kansas State should have been down on their luck coming into this game.  Tulane just beat KSU in Manhattan!  The Wildcats should have been feeling sorry for themselves.  The Sooners are sure to walk away with this game, right?    Vegas thought OU had a 13-point edge and an 84% chance to win.  So, you are saying there is a chance!


Like Han Solo, Kansas State wasn’t and isn’t interested in the odds.  They didn’t care that Oklahoma was honoring Lucious, Dewey and Lee Roy Selmon with a statue.  They didn’t care that Bob Stoops, Keith Jackson and Barry Switzer were on hand to watch KSU’s supposed demise to capstone a weekend of honoring Sooner legends.  It didn’t matter that Oklahoma was the sixth in the country.  You see, the Kansas State Wildcats are built differently.  They are never overwhelmed by the moment.  They made a host of mistakes last week culminating in their loss.  Adrian Martinez had not lived up to his billing this season….until Saturday night.

Kansas State quarterback Adrian Martinez throws a pass against Oklahoma during the second half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Sept. 24, 2022, in Norman, Okla. (AP Photo/Nate Billings)

I have been hyper critical of Martinez.  He was tentative, hesitant, and unsure during his first three games of the season.  It took a loss to wake him up.  It took a loss to help him understand he needs to play better.  The talent was on display the first three games of the season.  Yet, the talent was not consistently making plays where he could.


From the very beginning of the game Adrian Martinez played with authority, command and confidence.  Martinez willed the Wildcats to win.  His 382 yard and 5 touchdown effort led the Wildcats to victory.  The Sooners could not stop his arm.  They couldn’t stop his legs.  In fact, the Wildcats own receivers couldn’t even stop Martinez.  There were over five drops by Wildcat receivers on Saturday night.  Kade Warner dropped three that were in his breadbasket and would have been long gainers for first downs.  Still, Martinez willed his team forward to victory.   Adrian Martinez showed all of us what he has demonstrated to the coaches in practice for weeks…he is the man to lead this Wildcat team this year.


Kansas State started with the lead and held on to it for the duration of the game.  However, the most critical point in the game came at the beginning of the fourth quarter.  The score was 27 to 20.  Everyone was tired.  The players were beat up.  They were playing a physical game in a hostile environment with 80,000 screaming Sooner fans yelling their throats dry.  The Wildcats had held the Sooners explosive offense to a mere three points in the third quarter.  In the second quarter the Sooners had scored fourteen points in five plays and 90 seconds.  The Wildcats knew that Oklahoma would get their explosive engine running again.  The Sooners started the fourth quarter with the ball and the stingy Kansas State defense held them to yet another punt.  Then the Wildcats went on the march.  They drove down the field in nine plays.  It was third and five to go on the OU fifteen-yard line.  All the Wildcats needed was a field goal to make this a two-score game.  Martinez took control and blasted into the end-zone on a fifteen-yard run.


The Wildcat touchdown drive woke OU up and they went on a lengthy drive of their own to score a touchdown.  Once again Kansas State went on the march.  The OU defense was getting tired of being embarrassed by Deuce Vaughn who had rushed for over 100 yards on the day.  Colin Klein’s play calling became conservative.  He wanted to drain the clock, but he also wanted first downs.  His conservative play calling put the Wildcats at a disadvantage with a two-yard rushing loss.  Then the Wildcats committed a false start making the down second and 17.  The 2nd downplay was a one yard run up the middle.  It is third and 16.  Everyone in the stadium knew that it was a pass play.  Oklahoma aligned their defense to a loose zone to defend the pass.  Martinez read the defense perfectly…and promptly pulled the ball down and ran 55 yards thru multiple arm tackles to get the ball to the OU four-yard line.  He ran for his fifth touchdown of the game a few plays later.

Kansas State running back Deuce Vaughn (22) carries the ball against Oklahoma in the first half of an NCAA college football game, Saturday, Sept. 24, 2022, in Norman, Okla. (AP Photo/Nate Billings)

Oklahoma managed to score a touchdown with forty seconds left in the game.  They attempted an onside kick.  As Drake Stoops ran to secure the ball for the Sooners, Kade Warner made his best play of the game and collected the onside kick for the Wildcats, ending the game.


The biggest difference I noticed in Adrian Martinez is that he had command of the offense.  He stepped up into the pocket.  He always kept his eyes down field.  His throws were executed with authority and were always on target.  Martinez can flat spin it when he wants to.  Lastly, he executed great judgment when choosing to pull the ball down and run.  He will need to execute like that every Saturday in order for the Wildcats to challenge for the Big 12 title this year.


This win must be very special for Adrian Martinez.  He has lost so many close games when he played for Nebraska.  Most of those losses were not his fault.  As a fifth-year senior he has taken command of the Wildcat offense and led them to victory against the number six team in the nation at their house.  I hope they gave him the game ball.  He earned it.

Kansas State coach Chris Klieman talks to quarterback Adrian Martinez during the second half of the team’s NCAA college football game against Oklahoma, Saturday, Sept. 24, 2022, in Norman, Okla. (AP Photo/Nate Billings)

This is yet another signature win for Coach Chris Klieman.  It is also a signature loss for Brent Venables.  Many Kansas State fans will likely revel in this small measure of revenge for the coach they thought abandoned them.  The truth is that coaches move on, the years pass and time fades into memory.  It is best to live in the present and presently the Wildcats are 3 and 1 and undefeated in Big 12 play.  Presently the Wildcats have toppled the highest ranked Big 12 team in the conference.  Presently the Wildcats are focused on facing Texas Tech who is riding high on defeating the Texas Longhorns.




Leave a Replay

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

The reCAPTCHA verification period has expired. Please reload the page.


Hello fellow sports fans! My name is Joseph Jordan. Welcome to our page. Welcome to our website. I hope you are as deeply passionate about sports as I am. Julien and I have spent a lot of time writing our sports opinions on Facebook over the years. … Read More>>


Follow Us

Your The Sports. Your Inbox. Everyday