For he was a jolly good Fello. For he was a jolly good Fello. Which nobody could deny.
Bob Fello was smiling, all right, after Kansas' defense strong-armed Kansas State on Saturday, but please, Fello said, this one didn't belong to the Jayhawks' defensive co-ordinator. This one belonged to the fellows wearing the uniforms.
"Believe me, there was no great coaching," Fello stressed after KU's 31-7 victory. "That was the players. I just think we have great personnel."
Yes, but to hold a team any team without a first down for an ENTIRE half??? Amazing.
CURIOUSLY, FELLO said he didn't realize at halftime that the Wildcats hadn't managed a single first down in the first half.
"I didn't know it until I heard the P.A. announcer say it when we were coming back on the field," Fello said. "I thought he must have been from K-State, and that he was trying to get them fired up."
Even if P.A. announcer Howard Hill had been from K-State he isn't; he's general manager of KANU radio he didn't fire up the 'Cats. K-State did make a first down 4 minutes and 19 seconds into the third quarter, but by the time they recorded their second one late in the quarter the score was already 31-7.
Neither team scored in the last 19 minutes which, in retrospect, may have saved the goal posts. This one was a foregone conclusion for so long that it seemed almost like a routine victory.
It wasn't, of course. Kansas State came to Lawrence unbeaten and Kansas was coming off that disappointing 27-23 loss to California. KU's defense wasn't tattered in that Thursday night ESPN game, but it was certainly tarnished.
CAL HAD 22 first downs that night and 416 yards. By comparison, Kansas State finished with only 8 first downs and a mere 69 yards. Any secret? Not really, said Fello, just more shut-eye. It's a lot different with 16 days to prepare than it is with four days.
"It's tough to play with a couple of days rest," Fello said. "It helps if they get some sleep. Adrenalin will take you just so far."
Assuredly, the incentive was the same for both the Cal and K-State games. Against Cal, it was the thrill of playing on national television. On Saturday, it was agony of last year's 16-12 loss in Manhattan.
"They weren't gonna go another 365 days after losing to Kansas State," Fello stressed. "They decided they were gonna do what it takes."
In the meantime, on offense, quarterback Chip Hilleary, tailback Maurice Douglas and fullback Monte Cozzens all products of the Columbus, Ohio, area celebrated their own Columbus Day 48 hours early.
THE COLUMBUS trio KU's version of the Nina, Pinta and Santa Maria? accounted for 381 of KU's 457 yards. Douglas and Cozzens had a career-high rushing afternoons with 127 and 83 yards respectively. Hilleary passed for 162 yards and rushed for 19 more.
To paraphrase the title of Phillip Roth's book, on Saturday it was Hello Columbus, Goodbye Kansas State.