Kansas State should win.
All the numbers heading into this weekend’s game would indicate that following the Wildcats 52-13 domination over Miami. Now it’s North Texas that will be the opponent in a final tune up for the start of Big 12 play against Oklahoma next week.
But to Snyder, last week wasn’t about Miami, as this week is not about North Texas. “We’re trying to get ourselves better. We did that last week, but now we have to do it again.”
That’s been the conversation this week, as has the fact that if K-State is not ready to play, they can be in the headlines this week as Arkansas was last week after a loss to Louisiana-Monroe.
The players say the message has been heard loud and clear. Not taking anything for granted has been a focal point since losing to the Razorbacks in the Cotton Bowl to conclude a 10-win season in 2011.
“It’s why we play the game,” said quarterback Collin Klein. “IT comes down to who executes better, who plans the best and who executes their plan the best. That can be said for anybody, any game and any week. We just have to make sure we have a good plan, and then work our plan.”
While the series is hardly a rivalry, at least three of the four games are most memorable for at least one of the teams.
• In 1985, North Texas won its only game, 22-10, holding Stan Parrish’s Wildcats to just 186 yards in total offense.
• In 1989, “The Streak” ended with 0:00 left on the clock as Frank Hernandez caught a 12-yard pass from Carl Straw for a 20-17 victory. Defensive standout Maurice Henry said of the postgame celebration, “It was lie we had won the damn Super Bowl.” It was KSU’s 300th all-time win and broke streaks of 16 straight losses and 30 games – 0-29-1 – without a win.
• In 2010 K-State won a 49-41 thriller as Daniel Thomas rushed for 269 yards for the ‘Cats and Lance Dunbar for 266 yards for the Mean Green.
Of this game of 2012 coming one week before The Opening of Big 12 play at Oklahoma next week, Klein said, “It’s another important step just because it’s the next one. We played better last week, but we have not played our best game yet. That’s what we will continue to strive for.”
As Snyder says, “The message is to not take anything for granted and to take it a day at a time. Do not try to look beyond trying to prepare ourselves for today. Even though I know it is not their intent to be complacent or take something for granted, they do.
“It is all about our youngsters, our coaches and our team doing what we do day-in and day-out in preparation,” said Snyder. “It’s nothing more than that.”