For the first time in 13 years, the Sunflower Showdown has meaning for more than one team. Kansas and No. 12 Kansas State have not squared off with both teams sporting winning records since 2009.
Both teams have reached bowl eligibility, with K-State able to secure a bid in the Big 12 Championship Game Dec. 3 with a victory. Kansas would like nothing better than to go into Manhattan, Kan., and derail their rival’s conference title hopes and take home the Governor’s Cup.
Kansas leads the overall series 66-48-5, but Kansas State has won the past 13 meetings. The Jayhawks last beat the Wildcats on Nov. 1, 2008.
K-State (8-3, 6-2 Big 12) also would clinch a spot in the championship game against TCU if Texas loses at Baylor on Friday. But if the Longhorns take care of business at home against Baylor, K-State would need to beat the Jayhawks on Saturday to secure the spot in the title game.
Kansas State was expected to be good, but the way they got to this point was not expected. Starting quarterback Adrian Martinez, a transfer from Nebraska, was supposed to be leading the offense. But injuries have sidelined him early in two games and kept him out of two more.
Backup Will Howard has been steady if not spectacular in his stead. And running back Deuce Vaughn has been effective as well, giving K-State the kind of offensive balance that every coach dreams about.
With the arch-rival Jayhawks coming to town on Senior Night, head coach Chris Klieman has been careful not to make a bigger deal about the game than is necessary.
“I’m always careful about that, that this one is more important than last week, or next week or the previous two weeks,” he said Tuesday. “I’ve never been a big believer in ‘Put all your eggs in this basket,’ because if you don’t have success, what happens?
“We talk a lot about pressure vs. stress. Pressure is…
Source link : https://sports.yahoo.com/plenty-riding-no-12-kansas-210313517.html?src=rss
Author : The Associated Press
Publish date : 2022-11-23 21:03:13
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