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Slate: Klieman happy about offensive efficiency in Nicholls game

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A last look back at Saturday’s opener, and looking ahead to Bowling Green

NCAA Football: Nicholls State at Kansas State
Coach Klieman found a lot to be happy about in his first K-State game.
Scott Sewell-USA TODAY Sports

Let’s get right into it on this de facto Monday.

Football

Nearly everything K-State did Saturday at Bill Snyder Family Stadium seemed impressive. Coach Klieman tried to narrow the list to the “most” impressive thing, concluding that the team’s ability to keep drives alive (10/12 3rd Down conversion rate) stood out. Klieman also singled out reserve offensive lineman Josh Rivas for praise, saying he will play regularly in the rotation as the coaches try to keep the line fresh.

K-State’s stable of running backs ran all over Nicholls State, and all seem happy to share their opportunities as part of a rotation. Ryan Black at the Mercury emptied his note of all the odds and ends of the game, including the line rotation after starting right guard Scott Frantz went down with an apparent injury.

One difficulty for Coach Klieman this week was answering all the questions and getting the players familiar with his expectations for a game week routine. With the debut, which Klieman said resembled a circus in some ways, behind him, he can now focus on preparing for this Saturday’s game against Bowling Green.

Reporters and the athletic department have turned the page, as well. Kickoff against Bowling Green is at 11:00, and the game will be broadcast on FSN. Bowling Green, coming off a 2-10 campaign last year and led by new coach Scot Loeffler, destroyed Morgan State 46-3 last Thursday, gaining 579 yards and holding their opponents to 70. Oddsmakers must not have been impressed, because K-State has been installed as a 23-point favorite, after being favored by 23 12 against Nicholls.

In the NFL ranks, ten former Wildcats will begin the season as members of professional rosters. In case you missed it over the weekend, Cody Whitehair signed a 5-year, $52.5 million contract extension with the Chicago Bears (the second largest contract ever for an offensive guard), and the franchise heaped all kinds of praise on the 2016 draftee.

In non-football news, the K-State men’s basketball team was in town to celebrate last season’s Big-12 championship and to pick up their rings. They’re big and gaudy, like all championship rings, yet indescribably beautiful, as well.

Finally, after fourth and fifth-place finishes the last two years in the Big 12, the women’s cross-country team looks to replicate the blueprint followed by the men’s squad to take the next step this season.

Happy short workweek, everyone!