The spring game and The Boy Who Cried Wolf

MIAMI GARDENS, FL - SEPTEMBER 24: Quarterback Collin Klein #7 of the Kansas State University Wildcats rushes upfield against the Miami Hurricanes September 24, 2011 at Sun Life Stadium in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images)

In Aesop's old fable, it's the third time that the little boy cried "wolf" that he was actually telling the truth, but the villagers who believed him the first two times had by then lost all trust in him and didn't come running.

It would be great if the third straight year of a K-State quarterback throwing for monster numbers in the spring game actually meant good things for the future. But it's no coincidence that Klein's 475 480 yards has gotten considerably less attention than his 358 the year before and Coffman's 440 the year before that.

Of course, I didn't watch the game because I could think of about 475 480 ways I'd rather spend my Saturday afternoon, but it's hard to imagine anything Klein did against the second-team defense was overly impressive. The generally wobbly passes to mostly wide open receivers featured in the highlight package only serve to confirm that suspicion.

Bill Snyder claimed to be considering actually playing the first team against the first team, but sadly this turned out to be a dream as real as a tough nonconference schedule. Maybe this is an effort to get Klein and Co. ready for Missouri St., though it's safe to say that didn't exactly work last year with Eastern Kentucky.

I simply don't understand how changing the format wouldn't benefit everyone, even if it doesn't give the first team a deceptive confidence boost. This strategy is surely not helping them in the long run, and it's definitely not giving any mental edge to the white team, who scored only a kick return and got outgained 738-54.

Presumably, it's a good thing that Curry Sexton and Tramaine Thompson both had good games and the two running backs averaged better than 7 yards per carry. No defensive players really stood out and the fact that Arthur Brown had just one tackle shows just how little any of those statistics mean anyway, due to playing time or other various reasons.

Maybe I'm wrong to expect that we as fans deserve to get something useful out of our spring games, and honestly I'm not sure if other teams or even K-State during the Ron Prince years really showed all that much more. It's just extremely hard to have to wait more than 8 months between meaningful snaps, especially when you have a coach who rarely even gives bold predictions or and optimistic prognosis of his players that would give us something to talk about.

If you really want to try to find something of value from the game (and I do), here's a statistic to consider: In each of the last two seasons, K-State's starting quarterback has gone on to average about 40% of the passing yards per game that he threw for in the spring game. That would put Klein on pace to average about 190 192 yards next season, which I suppose seems fairly reasonable.

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