The Kansas State Wildcat defense came to Waco, Texas and really locked down on the Baylor Bear’s duel-threat QB Robert Griffin III, holding the sophomore to only eight yards rushing on six attempts. Griffin, who at any time, could have taken off from the pocket and done significant damage to the visitors from Manhattan on the ground, was held in check throughout the afternoon and was forced to beat the Wildcats through the air.
One small problem. The Bear quarterback didn’t need to run.
Griffin and the potent Baylor offense proceeded to pound the feeble, inept and over-matched Kansas State defense in all aspects of the game, on their way to a 47-42 Big 12 victory. The Bear signal-caller didn’t need to run, because RB Jay Finley ran freely through the porous Wildcats for 250 yards and two scores. Griffin didn’t need to run because he had significant success with his arm, toying with the Wildcats for a career-high 404 yards and four touchdowns. This was a monumental defensive breakdown by Kansas State, both players and coaches, that doesn’t look like will be corrected anytime soon. Questions abound in Purple Nation: Is it a lack of talent or do the coaches have them playing out of position? Regardless, this defense is bad and there are simply no answers at this point in the season. Griffin was able to move around in the pocket and throw on the run at will to completely wide open receivers throughout the game. The defensive line couldn’t penetrate or put any pressure on him and the secondary couldn’t run with the quicker Bayl0r receivers. With Oklahoma State and Texas coming to Manhattan over the next two weeks, things aren’t going to get any easier for this woeful Wildcat defense.
Offensively, the Wildcats picked up where they left off last week against Kansas and was effective moving the ball and putting points on the scoreboard. Quarterback Carson Coffman followed up his best game with another strong performance, throwing for 230 yards and scoring on two short touchdown runs. Senior RB Daniel Thomas ran for 113 yards on 22 carries and threw a 67-yard touchdown as the Wildcat offense had to go score-for-score to keep with the Bears. The Wildcats finished the game with over 400 yards of total offense and clearly weren’t the problem as they have shown the ability to move the ball effectively. Coffman has clearly progressed and has shown growing confidence over the past two weeks, particularly with his decisions on the field.
Again, the offense isn’t the problem with this Kansas State team, it’s the defense. Unfortunately, the offense can’t continue to be called upon to score every time they have the ball week to week to try and keep up with the defense and their inability to stop anyone. What remains to be seen is if Head Coach Bill Snyder and his staff can figure out how to put this defense in position to make plays and keep the team competitive as a whole for the remainder of the year.
About the Author
Written by Chad Craghead
A 1988 graduate from Wichita State University, Chad has followed WSU as well as Kansas State athletics for over 30 years, along with being a lifelong Boston Red Sox and L.A./St. Louis Rams fan.