MANHATTAN, KS - OCTOBER 1: Kansas State Wildcats head coach Bill Snyder looks on during the game against the Baylor Bears at Bill Snyder Family Football Stadium on October 1, 2011 in Manhattan, Kansas. The Wildcats won 36-35. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
People just can't show Bill Snyder enough love right now.
Snyder has taken a team that was slotted eighth in the preseason media poll and rolled to a 6-0 start, including a 3-0 conference start. That record could very well improve one game tomorrow when K-State takes on hapless KU, which is 2-4 and winless in conference play this season. If K-State wins, it would set up a battle of undefeated teams in Manhattan next week when Oklahoma shows up, and College GameDay would likely set up shop in front of Varney's in Aggieville.
So that leads back to the question at hand. Grantland writer Robert Mays took a look at what Snyder's doing in act two, with the help of acknowledged Snyder fan Barry Switzer. Allen Kenney of Crystal Ball Run called him one of the best college football coaches ever after K-State's 24-17 win over Missouri this year. So is it true? Is Bill Snyder one of, if not the greatest, college football coach in history?
He's certainly among the best, but we knew that after his first run. As the Grantland piece adequately describes, and as we all know very, very well, the fact that he was even able to take K-State to a bowl game represented a remarkable accomplishment. That he nearly took the Wildcats to the national title game would have been unfathomable in the Stan Parrish era.
When K-State hired Snyder the second time around, I thought it was a mistake. I didn't think he would be able to recapture the magic, and I feared some would think his accomplishments tarnished if he didn't have a similar turnaround. Admittedly, this season is far from over. It's entirely possible that K-State will end up 8-4 this year, which would exceed expectations, but would be seen from the outside as a moderate disappointment given the hoopla surrounding K-State's surprising start. But then again, K-State may keep doing what it's doing right now and finish 9-3 or 10-2.
And if it does, then you can put the pencil away and put Snyder down in pen as one of the greatest coaches ever. Even better, the run shouldn't be over after this year, as Snyder is starting to assemble some young horses that could propel K-State to even greater heights in the years to come. In the end, the fact that we can now ask, with a straight face, this question regarding Bill Snyder speaks volumes about the job he's doing in Manhattan this time around.