Wildcats Win First and Fourth Quarters

For the Kansas State Wildcats, this is this game has two quarters to remember and two to forget.  The Wildcats stormed onto the scene in the first quarter with three scoring drives in a row.  Then reality set in and the Red Raiders scored 20 points to the Wildcats seven in the second and third quarter.  The Red Raiders held the Wildcats scoreless in the second quarter.  Then the Wildcats scored 17 points unanswered in the fourth quarter.  Of course, the Red Raiders had a last gasp, executing an eight-point drive, and collecting the onside kick.  However, Julius Brents closed out the game for the Wildcats when he snagged a game ending interception.


Consistency still eludes the Wildcats offense.  Unfortunately, that is to be expected.  First, Adrian Martinez is still being integrated into the offense.  Second, though the NIL is in place, football players are still limited to no more than 20 hours of practice at week.  This is one of the reasons why talent matters.  This is also the reason why effective coaching matters.  Collin Klein is still working thru how to get his offense ready to go week to week.  The run game seems to be on point, however the passing game still needs a lot of work.  Martinez is efficient with his throws.  However, his receivers must be better at consistently catching catchable balls.  The good news is this Wildcat offense can be EXPLOSIVE!.  The Wildcats executed two touchdown drives on only two plays in each possession.  When they can pair that type of explosion with a consistent passing attack that routinely converts third downs, the Wildcats will be extraordinarily difficult to beat.


The 3-3-5 defense is custom built to defend the pass.  However, Texas Tech managed to eat up the Wildcats defense for 28 points with a backup quarterback.  The defenders must get better at matching with receivers within their zones.  That is a difficult ask when their eyes are on the quarterback.  Zone defenders need to feel what is going on around them.  Their head must be on a swivel.  Several touchdown passes could have been defeated had the defenders moved better within their zones.

Kansas State quarterback Adrian Martinez (9) runs for a touchdown during the second half of an NCAA college football game against Texas Tech Saturday, Oct. 1, 2022, in Manhattan, Kan. Kansas State won 37-28. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

Ultimately the Wildcats leaned on their strengths to win the game.  First, they executed multiple explosive runs for field position and or touchdowns.  Adrian Martinez ran for 171 yards and three touchdowns on twelve carries.  Deuce Vaughn also ran for 170 yards on 23 carries.  Midway thru the third quarter, Deuce got loose for 69 yards setting up a touchdown throw from Martinez to Phillip Brooks the very next play.  Martinez had two explosive runs over 60 yards during the game, including a 69-yard touchdown run to start the fourth quarter.  Second, the defense forced four turnovers and sacked the quarterback five times (by my count).  Felix Anudike-Uzomah made his presence felt throughout the game.  Brents smacked Red Raider receivers around and Khalid Duke collected three of the five Wildcat sacks.   Though the defense gave up 28 points to a backup quarterback, they stiffened up when they needed to.

Kansas State wide receiver Phillip Brooks dives into the end zone to score a touchdown during the second half of an NCAA college football game against Texas Tech Saturday, Oct. 1, 2022, in Manhattan, Kan. Kansas State won 37-28. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

Ultimately, Kansas State won a game they should have.  The Big 12 is not easy street this year.  There are no gimme games in conference play.  It should feel good to be 2-0 in Big 12 play.  On to Ames.


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