I guess it's my little pet item to explore, but I've been trying to quantify the number of extra yards that the Cats pick up every week as a result of four differentials: penalties, net kicking average, net punting average, and net turnover return yardage. Through the OSU game, the Cats were average roughly +80 per game.
In the TCU game:
Penalty yards: K-State 5, TCU 25 --KSU +20
Turnover returns: K-State 30, TCU 0--KSU +30
Punting average: The Cats punted 5x, the Horned Frogs 7x. For this number I used the lowest number of punts for either team. The Cats averaged 42.8 net yards per punt, TCU 25.4 yards per punt. 5 x 17 = KSU +85
Kickoff average: I was surprised to see K-State with a major advantage in the stats, as I didn't recall the Cats having a chance to return a kickoff tonight and the Horned Frogs semi-broke one. Ah, the failed onside kick was included in the official stats. I won't include it here. The LCD for (real) kickoffs, then, is 2. The Cats averaged a net of 39 yards per kickoff. Not including the onside kick, TCU (with two touchbacks) averaged 40. 2 x -1 =KSU -2.
Overall, this game saw KSU with a 133 yard advantage in "hidden yards". Ty Zimmerman's nice return didn't end up meaning anything. But the difference in the punting game was huge.
The Cats have won the "hidden yardage" battle in 9/10 games. They lost that battle against OU, though only by a few yards, and won the battle by a similar small margin against ISU. But in every other game, the margin has been anything from helpful to vital.