This was supposed to be the year the Red Wolves traveled to “The Big House” to take on the Wolverines and Coach Harbaugh’s kaki pants. COVID-19 pooped on that concept, and then presented an alternative: Red Wolves vs. Kansas State.
Some might view a move from the Wolverines to the Wildcats south of lateral, but not this guy. With Kansas State, Red Wolves fans have some reasonable proximity-interest to digest. Additionally, we have a ray of affinity for the Big 12 that doesn’t exist for the Big 10. Am I making this shit up? Yes. But my job is to provoke, not present facts.
For games such as this, we often pull out a couple buckets: BODY BAG and WINNABLE. The feels like a game for the WINNABLE bucket, even though the Wildcats did go 8-4 last season with wins over Oklahoma and Iowa State (who are both ranked this year).
Why is this game winnable then? I really haven’t a clue. In fact, my knowledge of Kansas State is so deficient I had to ask Twitter to help me.
A few of you did. Here’s the scientific feedback I received:
Great input! Very useful. Thanks for the participation. Yes, I had forgotten that the Wildcats rolled the dice on Chris Klieman, formerly of North Dakota State. I had forgotten that the program served as a shrine to Bill Snyder. And while I vaguely knew Kansas State is somewhere west of here, I’m not sure where the campus is officially located, nor have I the interest to Google it.
Does it sound like I’m disrespecting Kansas State? Listen, I’m communicating to you via a blog site for which I haven’t even bothered to purchase a custom URL. Judge for yourself.
What I’m certain of is that the Red Wolves, coming off a 37-24 loss to Memphis, have some cracks to spackle. The receivers have balls to un-drop, the defense have quarterbacks to press, and the coaches have onside kicks to reconsider.
Furthermore, the Red Wolves are playing two QBs that essentially bring the same thing to the table. This isn’t a matter of “one runs well” while the other “likes to pass.” They’re both chuckers! And they’re both good at it.
Listen, I’ll just offer this real-life anecdote to Coach Anderson: I once worked for an ad agency that decided to name THREE people creative director instead of one. This decision was meant to a) bring different skillsets to the leadership position, and b) not hurt anybody’s feelings. It was a disaster. All it did was strip all three of authority while building resentment. That’s my anecdote.
Some game stuff
The Duo of Bonner and Hatcher are set to take snaps against the Wildcats on Saturday, which is whatever. What the Red Wolves need to concern themselves with is the offensive line giving Botcher (or maybe Honner) time to work the magic, and for the wide receivers to make plays.
Thanks to Matt Stoltz, voice of the Red Wolves, I know that the Wildcats are pretty good at returning kickoffs. I know that returning QB, senior Skylar Thompson, is just as likely to run the ball into the endzone as he is to throw it.
Kansas State’s offensive wasn’t exactly burning down barns last season, but who can guess what new head coach Chris Klieman brings to the gridiron, aside from a championship attitude and the weighty expectations of living up to a football legend in Bill Snyder. Sporting News isn’t expecting much: they project the Wildcats to finish 7th in conference.
Hence, the Winnable Bucket.