The Kansas State football program has announced the newest members to the football “Ring of Honor”, and the 2022 class includes six former K-State greats. Four members of the class come from teams that won a Big 12 Championship, including Ell Roberson (2000-03), who led the Wildcats to the 2003 Big 12 Title, beating the “best in history” OU team at Arrowhead and a Fiesta Bowl berth. Current NFL All-Pro and former All-American wide receiver Tyler Lockett (2011-14), All-American linebacker Arthur Brown (2011-12), and Hesiman Trophy finalist and current K-State Offensive Coordinator Collin Klein (2009-12) come from the group that won the 2012 Big 12 Title. Darren Howard (1996-99) finally earns his place on the ring, and Larry Brown (1967-68), who wasn’t elite at K-State but went on to earn the 1972 NFL MVP award and was a three-time All-Pro running back for the Washington
Redskins Football Team Commanders, rounds out the class. Brown was already in the Washington Ring of Honor, and it’s great to see him finally honored at K-State.
Now lets see how long it takes for Nick Leckey to see his name in the stadium.
Adrian Martinez is finally fully healed, and the Wildcats are finally getting the full throwing experience from the 5th-year senior transfer. His receivers are raving about his arm and command of the routes, and are excited about what that means for the K-State offense this coming season.
Big news from the NCAA yesterday, as the initial counter limit of 25, which limited programs to signing 25 new players each year, has been lifted for the next two years. For FBS programs, that means that any program can now sign as many players as they can, up to the overall scholarship 85 scholarship limit. This should aid K-State by allowing the Wildcats to re-fill the roster without having to get creative with counters (like blueshirts, which count to the next year). Unfortunately, this will also greatly help KU, who has struggled to even get to 75 scholarship athletes for a decade.
Regardless of counters, Coach Klieman thinks the whole calendar needs to be reworked, especially as it comes to the transfer portal. If Klieman had his way, there would a specific and clear calendar for the portal, with the goal of clearing up timelines for both athletes and programs.
The BatCats are still riding the struggle bus on the road against teams with a pulse. Though to be fair, Virginia Tech is currently projected to host a NCAA Regional and is a Top 5/10 team, so they are pretty good, but the Wildcats struggled to get offense rolling and gave up early runs on the way to an 8-2 loss in Blacksburg, VA on Tuesday. The Cats were down 5-0 heading into the fourth inning, where they finally closed the gap thanks to a two-run homer from Dom Johnson, but the Hokies came right back with two more runs in the bottom of the frame, and the Wildcats never really challenged again. With the loss, the Cats drop to 27-24 overall on the season, and will need a series sweep of West Virginia this weekend to get to 30 wins before the Big 12 Tournament starts next Wednesday at Globe Life Field in Arlington.
Speaking of West Virginia, the Cats and Mountaineers square off this
Friday Thursday (today @ 5:30pm CDT), Saturday Friday (5:30pm CDT), and Sunday Saturday (11am CDT) in Morgantown, with K-State looking to pick up it’s first road conference series win of the season, and just their second road series win overall since taking two of three from Loyola Marymount way back at the beginning of March. The Mountaineers currently sit in 6th in the Big 12 standings, just one spot ahead of the Cats, so this will be a strong final test of whether or not the Wildcats should actually be in consideration for a bid to the NCAA postseason. At this point, a series win in Morgantown is required to even have a shot (outside of winning the Big 12 Tournament). All games are on Big 12 Now on ESPN+, or you can listen to the K-State broadcast online or in MHK over-the-air on KMAN.
The Wildcats could not sustain the excitement from earning their first postseason trip in several years, and finished 9th at the Norman Regional, being unable to climb the leaderboard to make the five-team cut to advance to the National Tournament. Tim Tillmanns was the leader for K-State this week, finishing in a tie for 14th place at 2-under 214 after carding a 1-over 73 final round. The junior’s performance was highlighted by a 5-under 67 second round, which was the lowest round by a Wildcat in K-State’s NCAA postseason history.
Another year, another new keeper coach for Mike Dibbini and the Wildcats soccer team. Dibbini has announced the hiring of Matt Smith to replace David Romay, who is headed across the pond to coach for Cardiff City FC Women. Smith comes to K-State after spending the past five seasons on staff at Baylor and became available after the staff overhaul in Waco. Smith helped coach Bears keeper Jennifer Wandt as she became the program’s all-time leader in career shutouts.
For the third-straight season, the K-State Athletics Communications Office earned the Super 11 Award from the Football Writers Association of America (FWAA). It’s also the fourth time since 2015 that the Wildcats staff has earned the honor, which is based on media accessibility, relationships and media operations, has been awarded to FBS sports information staffs each year since the conclusion of the 2009 season.