Campus Corner

The Star's blog on college sports, featuring Kansas, Kansas State and Missouri

Football Friday: Tre Walker, John Hubert, a schedule switch and Bill Snyder in a visor

09/13/2013 11:49 AM

09/13/2013 11:52 AM

Kansas State takes on Massachusetts at 6 p.m. tomorrow at Bill Snyder Family Stadium.

That means it’s time for another Football Friday.

The Wildcats are favored by 39 and should win easy. They will play two quarterbacks. Backups should see time in the second half.

That’s all the introduction we need. Let’s get to your questions:

Many have second-guessed the timing of the North Dakota State game. Looking back, I’m sure K-State would have preferred to open with someone else. The Bison, despite their affiliation with the FCS, were the strongest nonconference opponent on K-State’s schedule. UMass would have been a much softer opening opponent. In an ideal world, K-State would have switched those games and be preparing to face North Dakota State as we speak. But those dates are planned years in advance. That being said, I think the Wildcats would probably beat the Bison if they played now. They generally start slow (barely beating Eastern Kentucky and UMass in past openers) and improve with each week. But it would still be a difficult game. North Dakota State is a fine football team that out-played K-State three weeks ago. One computer poll ranked it 35th at the end of last season, and a senior-laden roster returned. That team is dangerous. It would have been a competitive game regardless of when it was played.

That certainly could be the case. Walker, a team captain and starting linebacker with a history of making big stops, only has four tackles this season. And they all came against North Dakota State. He barely played against Louisiana-Lafayette. The injury he suffered last season might still be holding him back, but it’s also possible other linebackers are simply out-playing him. Remember, Walker only made 19 tackles last year. As an underclassman, he averaged nearly four tackles. He’s averaged barely two since. Walker will always be a strong run-stopper, but he isn’t good enough against the pass to stay on the field when the Wildcats go to the 4-2-5.

I think you will see a heavy dose of those players in the second half. All three made tackles last week, so Bill Snyder already trusts them. If K-State takes a nice lead, Moore, Johnson, Davis and several other young players will be on the field.

Someone asked B.J. Finney that exact question earlier this week, and he couldn’t come up with an answer. I don’t think the offensive line blocks differently when Sams comes in. I think the defense puts more focus on Sams, which makes it easier for Hubert to break free. Sams also understands the running game a bit more than Waters, so he might know how to get the ball to Hubert in better situations. It’s also worth pointing out that Hubert benefited from Collin Klein’s running ability in each of the past two seasons. He definitely seems to be at his best next to a running quarterback.

I like the sound of Fort Snyder a lot more than The Bill.

Gotta admit, this question made me laugh. I’m inclined to say no, because most visor-wearers are young men with long,flowing hair. Then again, if Snyder can pull off a purple jacket on a 102-degree day he can pretty much pull off anything. Am I right?

Let me go consult my crystal ball … There is no way to answer this question without it. Dang, can’t find it. Uh, I don’t really have a strong opinion here, but I guess I would choose Currie. Though he could be lured away by another university, he is young and seems happy in Manhattan and says he could retire here. No idea on when Snyder decides to retire, but his new contract allows him to help K-State choose a replacement coach. He has said he will recommend his son. How seriously might Currie consider that option? It’s impossible to speculate until the moment arrives.

I sure did. It was kind of hard to miss on Twitter last night. Kudos to Dave Smoller and everyone else who spotted it. Can’t say I’ve heard of that kind of thing happening before.


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