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Thursday, October 14, 2010

KU vs. K-State: Head to head

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When Kansas has the ball

Kansas rush offense vs. Kansas State rush defense

Though sound during the Bill Snyder era in just about every defensive category, the Wildcats have been less than impressive against opponents’ rushing attacks so far this season. A big reason for K-State’s high yardage total against — 1,233 yards in five games — was Nebraska’s nasty total of 451 rushing yards during last week’s loss. Quarterback Taylor Martinez gained 241 of those yards, and tailback Roy Helu Jr. added 110, so the ’Cats are vulnerable against the run in a couple of areas. While KU QB Jordan Webb doesn’t run like Martinez and freshman James Sims doesn’t have the experience of Helu, both could create problems for K-State, both inside and out.

Edge: Kansas

Kansas pass offense vs. Kansas State pass defense

Like Kansas, the Wildcats have yet to face a true test against the pass this season. Because of that, K-State’s numbers against the pass appear sound, as the Wildcats give up just 150 yards per game and have only allowed five passing TDs. Kansas State’s defensive backs are fast and athletic, but so are KU’s wide receivers. The Jayhawks have emphasized throwing the ball down the field more in recent weeks. If given the time to do so, Webb could be in for a big night.

Edge: Kansas

When Kansas State has the ball

Kansas State rush offense vs. Kansas rush defense

Even though the Jayhawks have been more sound against rushing teams than passing teams this season, the Wildcats get the edge in this category with ease. For one, KU’s defense still has surrendered 938 yards on the ground in five games, for an average of nearly 200 per game. In addition, K-State running back Daniel Thomas (127 carries, 706 yards, six TDs) might be the best player in the conference, and, at times this season, he has looked nearly unstoppable.

Edge: Kansas State

Kansas State pass offense vs. Kansas pass defense

While the Wildcats have one of the best rushing attacks in the conference, their passing game is the complete opposite. At 156 yards per game, the Wildcats are dead last in the Big 12 in that category and also are near the bottom in touchdown passes (six), average yards per pass (7.4), completions (67) and attempts (105). While the KU defense hasn’t been outstanding against the pass this season, the Jayhawks also haven’t been awful.

Edge: Kansas

Special teams

Because the Jayhawks have yet to put together a complete game in the special-teams department, this unit has to be looked at as something of a weakness. Kansas has given up two blocked punts, struggled mightily in both kickoff-return coverage and the kicking game and has been inconsistent at best in its return game — top-notch at times and downright awful at others. The Wildcats, on the other hand, have been pretty vanilla throughout the season. There’s no trickery to what K-State does in this area of the game. Instead, KSU coach Bill Snyder puts his best players on the field and expects them to avoid mistakes. For the most part, they’ve done that this season, averaging a decent 28.2 yards on kickoff returns and nailing six of seven field goals they’ve attempted.

Edge: Kansas State

A previous version of the story incorrectly stated how many games KU has played.

Comments

KU_FanSince75 3 years, 9 months ago

If I were the goal posts tonight, I would be very worried. They need a soaking in Potter Lake!

(A little sarcasm here---don't anybody get hurt).

Rock Chalk Jayhawk---beat K-State!

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Ltown2Dtown 3 years, 9 months ago

KU_Fan -

While I enjoyed rushing the field a couple times during my time at KU, I feel that rushing the field for beating K-State would be illustrating our excitement for an upset. I can't support that tonight. I believe you should only rush a field when there are no expectations for your team to win. That is not the case tonight.

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aviebs51 3 years, 9 months ago

I don't understand how under any circumstances you could say the edge goes to KU pass defense. I guess we weren't watching the same game last week. I don't care who we play, until we can prove we can stop it I'll take a high school team throwing the ball against our pass D.

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Robert Brock 3 years, 9 months ago

Our pass defense will make Coffman look like a Heisman candidate.

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Jim Williamson 3 years, 9 months ago

I'll bet the farm it won't. The kid's as pedestrian as they come. His receivers might drop some balls simply because they're not used to having it close enough to catch it. If KU loses, it's going to be because Daniel Thomas beats them, not Chase Coffman. In fact, if KU puts John Deere in a position where Coffman has to make plays, I like KU's chances a lot.

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Robert Brock 3 years, 9 months ago

Our corners and safeties have the habit of giving big cushions of space to receivers. I am still waiting for some adjustments since that problem makes life too easy for opponents (combined with KU's inability to hurry or sack the quarterback). This would be an ideal time to execute better if we are capable of doing so.

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beenahawk 3 years, 9 months ago

Since CHASE Coffman isn't suiting up...I believe you might be correct!

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Ed Brown 3 years, 9 months ago

I think a lot will depend on if open field tackles are like the first game of the year or the Baylor game. The year started out with that ongoing problem seemingly behind us but it reared it's ugly head again in wacko-Waco.

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jhawk613 3 years, 9 months ago

Pass defense could be better now that Brodrick Smith is out of the game. Emphasis on "could".

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aviebs51 3 years, 9 months ago

Phogfan86 I don't disagree with you that it will be Daniel Thomas thats the problem. However, for anybody to say they like KU's pass defense over opponet's pass offense is a bit extreme. At best its a push....

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Michael Leiker 3 years, 9 months ago

My prediction is that this game is a snoozer one way or the other. Either both teams score at will and nobody hits anybody all night, or we see constant miscues on offense and both teams have under 10 first downs. Two bad football teams embarassing the Great State on Thursday Night.

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Bodonna 3 years, 9 months ago

I look for this to be close through three quarters. By the fourth though, DT will have worn down the defense and these three things will happen:

  1. DT will start getting 7 to 8 yards per rush because of the gassed defensive line.
  2. The safeties will start cheating up to help stop the run, and Coffman won't need to throw accurately to complete a pass - just get it in the general vicinity.
  3. William Powell will get carries. He's small and fast; the perfect changeup to DT. This is what KSU did in their first four games, and it will happen again tonight.
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Andy Tweedy 3 years, 9 months ago

The one thing I'm not buying is how fast and athletic K-State's defensive backs are. I watch Nebraska's tight end...yes, tight end...separate from them on a long touchdown run last week. Tight ends are not supposed to separate from DBs, I don't care what tight end we're talking about. Rock Chalk Jayhawk!!!

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grandpa 3 years, 9 months ago

My big concern is our lack of a pass rush and lack of sacks. Baylor qb had all day to pick his receivers. Gill needs to rey and develope somebody to get through the defensive line. We never blitz anybody. This puts a ig strain on our already weak defense backs. In spit oef all of this, we are going to win in about 2 hours and I will enjoy celebrating with my margaritas. I can taste them now!!

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tmcats 3 years, 9 months ago

these comments are really enlightening in reflection of the game outcome. emaw.

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conair24 2 years, 9 months ago

i just signed up to say this, this is coming from a non-bias fan. you are a straight up moron if you think ku has ANY kind of edge against an 11th ranked team. regardless the fact that its kstate, ANY 11th ranked team. KU is crap this year. just accept it and quit hoping. your probably going to lose out the rest of the year. just ACCEPT THE FACTS. ku is poopy. oh yea, boomer sooner

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