Sunflower Showdown 2021

Sunflower Showdown 2021

Kansas State edges closer to even with KU in this 119-year rivalry. That’s right, 119 years and KU has the 14-game edge with 64 wins, however they have tied five times. The Wildcats really started building their win column after Bill Snyder became the head coach in 1989. They earned their first win in the Snyder era in 1991. With Saturday’s win, Kansas State is on a 13-game winning streak bringing their win total to 50. This is one of the oldest rivalries in college football history.

I must be honest; I was a bit concerned about Saturday’s game. This is the same KU squad that was up 10 -0 on Oklahoma at half time earlier this season. They haven’t accomplished much else this season; however, they have potential. My concerns were put to rest when the Wildcats scored 14 points in the first quarter. It wasn’t the fact that they scored 14 points, but how they scored them. In the first quarter they played ball control for their first drive, and they had a quick strike their next drive. For the remaining three quarters, the Wildcats played with the Jayhawks much like a cat toying with its prey before enjoying its meal.

The Wildcats took it easy on the Jayhawks. They left some plays on the field. However, they showed they have the capability of being a quick strike team as well as a ball control team. KSU’s second possession of the game was a hot 46 seconds long due to 68-yard Skylar Thompson to Malik Knowles connection for a touchdown. KU let Deuce get loose the first play of the second half as he sprinted 80 yards for a touchdown. KSU’s other scoring drives were all multi-play drives for 70 yards. The Wildcats did have one 51-yard drive that didn’t pan out because of a missed field goal. Lastly, Skylar Thompson missed long touchdown throws on two different occasions. Had those ball’s been caught, and the field goal made, the Wildcats would have scored well over 50 points on Saturday.

The defense played extremely well on Saturday. They knocked two KU quarterbacks out of the game. Felix Anudike-Uzomah collected another sack and forced fumble. Uzomah has 11 sacks and 5 forced fumbles for the season. He now leads the league in both categories. The defense held KU to 10 points and forced several fumbles, however those fumbles were recovered by KU. They also held firm on two fourth down conversion attempts.

Deuce Vaughn finished the day with three touchdowns and 162 yards rushing on 11 carries. He also had five receptions for 60 yards. Malik Knowles caught 3 balls for 94 yards and a touchdown. Kade Warner converted three third downs for 36 yards. (Yes, that is hall of fame quarterback Kurt Warner’s son). Finally, Ben Sinnott, fullback, scored a touchdown! It is always nice to see the unsung big men doing the dirty work get a score.

All in all, this was a nice middle of the season win as the Wildcats prepare for an inconsistent West Virginia team. The Mountaineers are no slouch, and they are always a tough out. West Virginia will also be upset coming off their loss to Oklahoma State. The Wildcats will need to be on their best to secure their seventh win of the season.

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