For a Kansas State offense that has battled inconsistency all season, there were reasons to believe Saturday’s finale at TCU would be a struggle.
Poor weather conditions. No Alex Barnes.
Those factors didn’t bother the Wildcats one bit in a 30-6 victory in Fort Worth.
K-State’s Jesse Ertz and Justin Silmon ran the ball as Bill Snyder’s team secured a fourth-place finish in the Big 12.
“Regardless, heck or high water, our program is about getting better, day in and day out,” Bill Snyder said. “That’s truly what took place with us this year.”
It took a while for the offense to hit its stride, but the Wildcats (8-4, 6-3 Big 12) never trailed thanks to a stifling defensive effort. TCU failed to score a touchdown for the first time since 2006.
“I think we’ve played reasonably well all season, in terms of our front four,” Snyder said. “And part of that is the experience that we have on the back end as well.”
Ertz gave his team some breathing room with a 32-yard touchdown run early in the second quarter, and K-State led 10-6 at halftime.
From there, the TCU looked rather hapless on both sides of the ball. Foster Sawyer and Kenny Hill were equally ineffective at sustaining drives against Jordan Willis and the Wildcat defense.
Ertz finished with 170 yards rushing and one touchdown, while Silmon scored twice in the second half to extend the lead and finished with 133 yards.
“Silmon was excellent and ran explosively,” Snyder said. “For Justin to step up and do the same thing (as Alex Barnes) was pretty special.”
In front of a sparse and chilly crowd, K-State took the energy out of Amon G. Carter Stadium with an 83-yard connection from Ertz to Byron Pringle on their first drive of the second half. The touchdown, which was the team’s longest since 2014, put the Wildcats ahead 17-6.
K-State’s bowl destination won’t be made official until Sunday afternoon, but all indications are that the Wildcats will play in the Texas Bowl in Houston against an SEC opponent.
It doesn’t matter to Snyder.
“Whether it’s in Texas or Australia, it doesn’t make much of a difference to us.”
Filed in: Postgame Wrap up