Today’s Slate is so packed with opinion that I am eschewing my usual reliance on the Royal We. Tremble in fear, worthy subjects. Your benevolent despot descends from the mountaintop.
As our own Tye Burger outlined yesterday, Brett McMurphy reported that a deal was in place to bring Jim Leavitt in as K-State’s head coach in waiting, with a stipulation that he’d receive three million dollars if he wasn’t named head coach by January 1, 2018. Most of our staff, minus Tye and myself, gathered ‘round the table to discuss the matter yesterday.
So now, it’s my turn.
At first, my reaction was anger at Snyder for taking the Joe Paterno route, but — as Kevin Haskin at the Capital-Journal also notes -- this was a pretty sneaky back-door attempt to force Snyder into accepting not only an assistant, but his own replacement.
Still, we have to face the elephant in the room. If it’s true that Sean Snyder has basically been “running the program” for the last four years, he’s not doing much better than Ron Prince did. There are some who might argue that K-State probably isn’t going to do any better with anyone else, but I refuse to believe that’s true.
Which brings up the question of who leaked this information to McMurphy, and why. What we know: it wasn’t John Currie, killing the conspiracy theory that he’s getting back at Bill Snyder for telling potential Tennessee coaches what Currie’s really like. It wasn’t Laird Veatch, killing another theory that he’s just mad he didn’t get the AD job.
What we don’t know: who within the K-State bubble actually leaked it.
As to why, we can only speculate. But it seems likely that the leak was designed to force some sort of action, or perhaps force some scrutiny of the program itself to help figure out why it’s suddenly gone dysfunctional.
In any event, this is a mess, and needs to be dealt with. Casual denials of minor details -- none of which actually serve to deny the basic thrust of the story, mind you — aren’t going to quell the firestorm.
Sam Mellinger at the Star calls this situation a disaster. At CBS, Dennis Dodd seems to be wrinkling his nose at the legend. Ken Corbitt also reports, revealing that it was in fact Currie who made the arrangement (and in the process verifying that this is a real thing, not a dumb rumor).
At DieHards, my buddy Shehan Jeyarajah has... a bad take. It’s okay, I told him it was a bad take. We’re cool.
DeAundra Allen at the Collegian has the same basic story, but reached out to some boosters who knew Currie wanted Leavitt, but were surprised a deal was actually in place.
Yesterday, K-State announced a home-and-home with Missouri in 2022 and 2023. My story, plus takes from Bill Connelly at Rock M Nation, Kellis Robinett at the Star/Eagle, some nameless drone at FOX, and Dave Matter at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, who reports that Mizzou’s scheduled 2022 game at Middle Tennessee State may now be moved in order to prevent the Tigers from playing six road games.
Tulsa World stuff: Mark Cooper has some helpful tips if you’re making the trip to Stillwater, and he also grades out the in-game matchups, giving K-State the edge only on special teams and when running against the Cowboy defense. Meanwhile, Kendrick Marshall profiles safety Jerel Morrow, the Emporia native who got his first start against K-State back in 2014 and figures to be an important part of tomorrow’s game.
At our sister site Cowboys Ride for Free, Dustin Ragusa does a nice job on film study breaking down the Wildcat offense. Definitely check this out. Also check out my answers to their Q&A, with Micah Allen handling the questions. Her answers to my own questions will be posted in a couple of hours.
There was some stuff in the Stillwater News Press, but AdBlock Plus — which I have configured to actually ALLOW non-intrusive ads — BLOCKED a total of SEVENTY-FIVE ADS on ONE PAGE, and wouldn’t let me actually read the articles without disabling it, so I’m not linking them. You want to go find them, that’s your prerogative.
Oh, yeah, basketball
Robinett previews tonight’s game against Cal-Irvine, Ken Corbitt talks about Makol Mawien and Mawdo Sallah getting comfortable with the Wildcat post, Corbin McGuire talks about defense in today’s Sports Extra, and later I’ll have your How to Watch for both the women’s game against Florida A&M Rattlers and the Cal-Irvine game, followed by an open thread for both contests courtesy of your pal JT.
The VolleyCats’ final road contest of the regular season ended just like the previous eight matches: a loss, this time to #19 Baylor in four sets. Sarah Dixon recorded her team-leading 11th double-double, with 23 assists and 11 digs, but it wasn’t enough to send the Wildcats to their ninth straight defeat. It is the second longest losing streak of Susie Fritz’s tenure at Ahearn.
The beleaguered ladies will return home for their final two games of the season, the first of which will be at 7pm Saturday night against the Oklahoma Sooners. Wednesday night, they’ll face West Virginia for Senior Night, and we’ll bid farewell to Bryna Vogel... and nobody else, so maybe next year will be a big bounce-back year.