As you might have expected, I'll end this year's previews with the most pressing question facing the 2010 Wildcats:
Can we find a quarterback we can trust to run the offense without turning the ball over?
Carson Coffman might be the starting quarterback this week, but so far, he's only proven that he's a September quarterback — not an October or November one.
Meanwhile, the future rests on K-State's bench, biding his time, watching and learning.
#4 Billy Cosh
Billy Cosh is the greatest high school quarterback in Maryland history. That's not opinion — it's fact. He rewrote nearly every single state record during his four years as a quarterback for Arundel High School. Some people might sneer at the offers he had out of high school, but I've watched his film and I consider us lucky we had an "in" during his recruitment — his dad's our defensive coordinator.
Cosh's legend has grown since arriving in Manhattan for spring practice, despite the fact that he had a pretty terrible spring game. Reports out of fall camp are that he has the strongest arm of all our quarterbacks, and probably the most accuracy as well. There's even a rumor he broke a wide receiver's finger with one of his passes.
Barring a complete meltdown at the QB position, Cosh should redshirt this season. But if neither Klein nor Lamur show us much of anything this season, he very well might enter 2011 as the favorite to replace Coffman.
#7 Collin Klein
Collin Klein was recruited by Ron Prince, shifted to wide receiver last season because Bill Snyder didn't want his athleticism to go to waste, threw one perfect little pass to Daniel Thomas at Nebraska and moved back to quarterback permanently this spring.
Oh, and he switched to No. 7. Loaded number, that, what with Michael Bishop wearing it and all.
Klein's chief advantage over Coffman is his mobility. But he lacks experience and probably doesn't have as good an understanding of the overall offense. However, word is he has a stronger arm, but he hasn't shown it publicly. After a good spring (reportedly), he missed the spring game with an unspecified injury. Then at Fan Appreciation Day, he apparently had his worst outing yet, at least in the passing department.
That, coupled with news of Sammuel Lamur's immense improvement this fall, has some thinking Klein has slipped to No. 3 permanently. I don't buy it. I think you'll see him play, if not this week, than next week, and I think he will continue to push Coffman more as he learns more of the offense.
#9 Ryan Manes
Manes is a redshirt freshman from Ellsworth, Kan. He checks in at 6-foot-4, 187 pounds. Not much else I can say about him.
#13 Sammuel Lamur
The best word to describe Lamur is "enigma." All last season, while both Coffman and Gregory were struggling to be effective, we heard of Lamur's prowess with the scout team. Coach nearly pulled his redshirt on at least one occasion. But in the spring game, Lamur looked pretty bad in directing the White offense to a shutout loss.
Then came fall camp. He apparently came storming out of nowhere, briefly overtook Klein for the No. 2 spot, looked 10 times better at FAD and has settled into an "OR" situation with his co-backup on the initial depth chart. Other than Cosh, Lamur has the strongest arm on the team. The problem is that he throws it to the defense way too much.
There almost certainly is a Wildcat package based on Lamur's talents in our offense this year. I don't know how much of it we will see tomorrow, but I would guess it will make at least a few appearances. Snyder continues to stick with this player because he sees what he can be if he just accepts the coaching. Whether that happens could be the biggest story of this season.
#14 Carson Coffman
A lot of people are expecting Carson to fail this season, perhaps as soon as tomorrow. But the message from his teammates and coaches has been consistent since spring practices: He's an improved quarterback who makes better decisions and completes more passes since his benching last fall.
Coffman's never going to be a world-beater with his arm or his legs, but if he can cut down the mental mistakes, he can't possibly be worse than Brian Kavanagh, a near-immobile QB who led K-State to 10 wins in 1996 with almost no weapons around him. Carson has a veritable arsenal and he needs to make the most of it in his final season.
#15 Sam Johnson
Sam Johnson is a 5-foot-11, 207-pound walk-on QB from Topeka High. I don't know a thing about him.
- Starter: Carson Coffman (for now)
- Backups: Collin Klein and Sammuel Lamur
- Scout Team: Billy Cosh