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The burden of low expectations

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Nobody expects much of K-State football. Maybe the team will surprise?

Olympics Day 7 - Athletics Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images

Previously...

We are now exactly four weeks from Real Live Football, and to celebrate, BracketCat brings us #28 defensive back Nate Guidry, Jr., and the strange tale of how he ended up at Kansas State.

Gracey Terrill had a chance to chat with Kelly Stewart who broke down the Vegas numbers on Kansas State football for 2016. The verdict? She’s taking the over on the 5.5 games offered by the bookmakers.

Finally, as part of an ongoing series on Kansas State’s Olympians, we took a brief look at Erik Kynard, Jr. and his quest for gold in Rio.

Football

Kansas State did not make an appearance in the first pre-season Amway Coaches’ Top 25 poll. This is not particularly surprising. After all, the Wildcats went 6-6 last year, and did not impress down the stretch. With a similar roster of returning players, a tougher schedule, and a strong-as-ever Big 12, it’s unlikely Kansas State will win more than 6-7 games. Still, the expectations for the team seem lower than usual, and Kellis Robinett is puzzled by it. But in other news, he suggests Byron Pringle may be the featured passer in wildcat sets, with Joe Hubener as the featured receiver. (As you might recall from endless stories last year, Hubener never played quarterback at high school, but he did play wide receiver!)

Basketball

The basketball team embarks on its 12-day tour of Europe on Monday (Ken Corbitt, Topeka Capital-Journal). The tour will take them through five cities in Italy and Europe, and Bruce Weber hopes the trip will help the team come together, much as it did before the 2012-13 season. That season culminated in a share of the conference title, and the team is looking for the same sort of chemistry.

Meanwhile, the Wildcats will host an open scrimmage today at Bramlage Coliseum at 2:30 PM. After the scrimmage, Weber will address the crowd. Fans can also get a personal item signed by the players.

Track and Field

Before Akela Jones, there was Austra Skujytė. A four-time Olympian and heptathlon silver medalist in Athens, she was also part of the 2001 and 2002 Big 12 Championship women’s team.

Skujytė’s life has changed a lot since then. She’s been a coach in Lithuanian Sport University since retiring after a fifth-place finish at the heptathlon at the 2012 London Games. She got married in 2014 and has an infant son as well.

But this year, she decided to return to competition and just barely missed qualifying for an unprecedented fifth Olympic Games at the European Athletics Championships. She is already the only woman to compete in four Olympic heptathlons.

On October 2, Skujytė will be inducted into the Kansas Sports Hall of Fame.