Sky Falling in Manhattan?
In Week 9 of Going Deep, Matt Tait and Eric Sorrentino speak with Cole Manbeck of the Kansas State Collegian. Manbeck discusses a variety of topics, including K-State fans turning on the program, coach Ron Prince's recruiting methods, the impact of Josh Freeman against KU, and what K-State must do to have a shot of beating KU in Lawrence. From what it sounds like, Wildcat fans are fed up ... big-time.
With the possible exception of game-day weather, there were probably not a lot of positives the Kansas University football coaching staff could take away from Saturday's 63-21 loss to visiting Texas Tech.
The Jayhawks gave up 556 yards of total offense. They turned the ball over five times.
Kansas coach Mark Mangino probably put it best when, afterward, he stood in front of a podium and said his team had been the recipient of a "good old-fashioned butt-whoopin."
"Something like that happens, all you can do is look at each other and pull together and kind of just smile, because it's one of those things like, 'Man, we really got beat today,'" junior safety Darrell Stuckey said.
Thing is, with the possible exception of some bruised egos and a suddenly lighter bandwagon, Saturday's loss doesn't really change much in the grand scheme of things.
The Jayhawks are still tied for first in the Big 12 North - along with Missouri and Nebraska. They're still among the country's best offensive teams, though their string of 19 straight weeks ranked in the Top 25 came to an end Sunday.
"You can't expect to play three or four years (of college football)," reasoned quarterback Todd Reesing, "without expecting to get your butt whooped every now and then."
Now, they'll face the remainder of their schedule - which doesn't get any easier in the coming weeks.
In their four remaining regular season games, the Jayhawks won't face a team ranked lower than 30th in scoring offense, while three of their next four opponents are ranked in the top 15 of the same category (Kansas State is 13th, Texas is fifth and Missouri is fourth).
And in the wake of a two-week stretch in which they have given up 108 points and 1,230 total yards to Oklahoma and Texas Tech, that might be cause for concern.
"Obviously, anytime you give up 63 points there's reason for concern," Mangino said. "Certainly we're disappointed, but we're not discouraged. If players are willing to work hard and get better, we're willing to coach them, and that's what'll happen. Our kids will fight back. They're resilient. They want to get better, and they will."