Penalties on Texas, a near-complete inability to stop K-State on third down, and some gutsy playcalling by the Wildcat offense are the story of the day so far as K-State heads into the locker room with a 21-7 lead.
K-State struck first on the opening drive, aided by what seemed like a hundred offsides penalties on Texas and a holding call in the end zone. One of those offsides calls resulted in a 31-yard pickup as Jesse Ertz took advantage of the free play to hit Deante Burton on the sideline. Some luck was in play as well; a tipped pass resulted in Isaiah Zuber diving to grab a wounded duck for a seven-yard gain. Charles Jones filled in the yardage gaps, and at the end Ertz made a beautiful option pitch fake which froze the Longhorn defense; Ertz strolled in untouched from six yards out.
Great coverage and a holding call on Texas started the Longhorn drive at the four. Good thing, because Texas gashed the Wildcats on the ground, and only a good series with a couple of no-yardage stops and then a sack by freshman Kyle Ball forced Texas to punt. The Horns almost downed the punt inside the one, but it got away for a touchback.
On the next drive, K-State actually went for it on 4th-and-1 from their own 29... and got it. A nice draw by Ertz on 3rd-and-9 picked up another first, hit Burton for 9 on 3rd-and-5, then found Dimel for 13 on the next play. The drive ended with what should have been a sack, but was instead a 19-yard TD run by Ertz which put the Cats up by two touchdowns.
How did Texas answer? Foreman ran for 6, 3, and minus-two. After starting poorly, the Wildcat defense figured out the Texas run game. The Longhorns failed to mount another threat on the ground.
One their third drive, K-State played risky, trying to score quickly. Unfortunately, Ertz's arm isn't up to it yet; both pass attempts looked bad, and Ertz took a sack on third down. Things settled down for both teams, but Texas finally got on the board when Duke Shelley failed to get the jump on a route, resulting in an 80-yard touchdown from Shane Buechele to Devin Duvernay. The play basically doubled the Longhorn's yardage on the day.
It was the Longhorns’ first score in Manhattan in 85 minutes of game time.
The half ended with a textbook Wildcat drive, chewing the rest of the half and culminating with an 8-yard TD pass from Ertz to Byron Pringle with only nine seconds left, in a spot where everyone thought K-State might just settle for three. And thus, K-State enters the locker room up two scores.
And Charlie Strong has never won a game at Texas in which the Longhorns trailed by 14.
Ertz is 15-19 for 147 yards. K-State's also run for 97, most of which via the legs of Ertz (42) and Jones (37). They've also gobbled up 47 yards on Longhorn penalties. Meanwhile, Texas only has 162 yards, 80 on one play.