We’ll get to the football stuff in a second, but congratulations are in order for the Voice of the Wildcats, as Wyatt Thompson has garnered his sixth Kansas Sportscaster of the Year honor from the National Sportscasters and Sportswriters Association, and his fourth in a row.
It’s January in Manhattan, KS, and we have basically no basketball news except what you already know. No game tonight because a combination of injuries and COVID leave the WeberCats without enough scholarship players to meet the Big 12 threshold. And no women’s hoops either, because the MittieCats have been dealing with their own COVID outbreak since returning from Christmas break. But today’s Sports Extra is at least looking ahead for the women’s basketball team, and Coach Mittie is still betting on his squad.
But we do have some good football news for you today. First up, yesterday afternoon Coach Klieman received the commitment of transfer defensive back Julius Brents, a former 4-star recruit who had began his career at Iowa in 2018 before deciding to transfer after the conclusion of the 2020 season. The 6’2 204lb Indianapolis native started several games as a true freshman for the Hawkeyes in 2018, before sitting out most of 2019 due to injury. But Brents did not break back into the starting rotation during the 2020 season, though he played in all seven regular season games for Iowa this season. Thanks to the frozen clock, Brents comes to K-State with RS-Sophmore eligibility, meaning he has three years remaining to play three seasons.
Also yesterday, senior linebacker Cody Fletcher announced that he has decided to use his extra year of eligibility to return to K-State for one more season. The linebacker corps has been much talked about this offseason due to the potential loss of three regular rotation players from 2020, as well as an overall young group. But with Fletcher returning, as well as the addition of Utah State transfer Eric Munoz, the Wildcats will have a strong veteran presence to build on into the 2021 season.
Over in baseball news, somewhat surprisingly, the BatCats made a “top rankings” list, as among the nearly 300 schools playing Division 1 baseball, the Wildcats check in at #50 of College Baseball Nation’s Preseason Top 50 rankings. Eight Big 12 teams made the cut, meaning one team got left out in the cold. I’ll let you enjoy figuring out which team didn’t make it.
And one bit of sad news for today, as the BotC staff wishes to extend our deepest condolences to former K-State running back James Gilbert and his family on the tragic loss of James’ father James Gilbert Sr. last week in a car accident. A GoFundMe has been set up to help pay for funeral expenses, and as of this posting it has raised nearly double the goal amount set.