It's finally here -- the start of the 2023 football season for your Kansas State Wildcats!
The Wildcats begin their defense of the 2022 Big 12 Championship at home this evening, facing a Southeast Missouri State team that has been picked to win the FCS Ohio Valley Conference. Certainly K-State is a strong favorite, but it's going to be far from a cake-walk today.
But at least the Wildcat team that takes the field today won't look incredibly different from the one that played in K-State's first-ever Sugar Bowl. The entire starting offensive line returns, as does Big 12 Champion QB Will Howard. On defense, the "QB" Daniel Green returns at middle linebacker, with returning starters at linebacker, defensive end, and even safety. Plus some young guys on both sides of there ball that saw action late in 2022.
But it's still the first game with some new faces in key positions. Gone are Deuce Vaughn, Julius Brents, and Felix Anudike-Uzomah -- who all made Week 1 NFL rosters for this coming season. So the Cats may take a bit to gel against a team wearing a different jersey, but Chris Klieman should get the kinks worked out pretty quickly.
It may not always be pretty, but this is one the Cats should win comfortably.
So to goal for today is simple: shake off the rust, don’t give anyone a heart attack, and get some playing time for the young guys. Do that, pick up the win, and we’ll all be happy campers.
We’ve got an 6:00pm CT kickoff from Bill Snyder Family Stadium being aired on Big 12 Now on ESPN+ with Mark Neely (play-by-play), Adam Breneman (analysis), and Tory Petry (sideline reporting) on the call.
If you haven’t picked up ESPN+ yet the game can be heard across the 38-station K-State Sports Network with Wyatt Thompson (play-by-play), former K-State quarterback Stan Weber (analysis), and Matt Walters (sidelines) calling the action. The game will also be on SiriusXM Satellite Radio Ch. 199, and available online at K-Statesports.com. Live stats are also available at k-statesports.com, and Twitter updates (@KStateFB) will also be a part of the coverage.