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Slate: Wildcats Prepare for West Virginia

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Volleyball’s winning streak ends in 5-set heart-breaker to No. 5 Texas.

NCAA Football: Mississippi State at Kansas State
Blake Lynch has worked his way into full scholarship status.
Scott Sewell-USA TODAY Sports

Previously

TB dropped by to hand out his first quarter grades for the football team, and let’s just say no unit is threatening summa cum laude honors at this point in the season.

Football

Over the years we’ve seen dozens of heartwarming stories about walk-on football volunteers rising from obscurity to earn scholarships. Now, starting place-kicker and former athletic department janitor Blake Lynch has his own story, and it’s a good one.

Right on cue with all our grousing about not-in-season recruiting philosophy, K-State received a commitment from 6-5, 215-pound tight end Konner Fox yesterday. The three-star prospect is rated 59th at the position nationally. He appears to be more athlete than road-grader, so maybe Blaise Gammon will not, in fact, be the last K-State tight end ever to touch the football.

Though there has been a comparative dearth of anticipation by the local press for Saturday’s contest against West Virginia, over in enemy territory, reporters are salivating. Bob Hertzel at The Morgantown News began by reliving a couple of key Will Grier plays from last year’s 28-23 Mountaineer win in Manhattan. He also reminded us that K-State actually shut out the visitors in the second half of that game, but only mustered a field goal on offense themselves in suffering the home loss.

Looking forward to Saturday’s game, Alex Hickey at the Dominion Post says that Mississippi State provided the blueprint for beating K-State. He is correct, insofar as he notes that blueprint revolves around battalions of monster athletes at the point of attack, an arsenal that few other teams can replicate. In a separate article, he noted that containing K-State’s quarterback run game will be key in determining this year’s outcome.

The Daily Athenaeum noted that K-State appears to be blitzing and playing more man-coverage on the outside, which may open up more big play opportunities for the aggressive Mountaineer offense. The assumption that K-State will deploy that strategy against Big 12 air raids may turn out to be misplaced.

Greg Hunter at WV News says the West Virginia offense has to “be what it is” to win the game. Translation: “We’re better than you, and we’re don’t have to change anything to beat you.”

One trusty local beat-writer, Arne Green, notes that K-State wants to establish the run game to grind down clock and keep the ball away from Big 12 offenses. No better time than the present to begin.

Volleyball

The volleyball squad fought until the final point, and even had a chance to win the match itself, before falling to No. 5 Texas Wednesday night in a five-set thriller in Ahearn Fieldhouse. Though the loss ended K-State’s winning streak, Coach Susie Fritz saw many positive signs in the match.

Soccer

K-State goalkeeper Emma Malsy had to wait a long time—nearly two years—to get on the field after transferring from Arizona State and suffering an injury. She made the most of the time off and has six shutouts to start her K-State Career.

The soccer squad (4-3-2) opens league play against Oklahoma State Friday night in Manhattan. Oklahoma State (8-1-0) was last year’s Big 12 champion and is currently ranked 15th.

Baseball

Football season is barely underway, but there is baseball news. Pete Hughes announced the full schedule for 2018-2019 yesterday. The highlight of the non-conference season is a March 6 visit to Missouri. Are we okay with that?