A Letter from A.D. John Currie - December 31, 2015

Good Afternoon K-State Nation:

Greetings from Memphis, where the sun has finally emerged this morning, and our student-athletes, coaches and staff continue to enjoy outstanding AutoZone Liberty Bowl hospitality!

Moments ago the annual Liberty Bowl luncheon concluded, and I had the honor of recognizing some of the special accolades earned by our student-athletes and coaches this season. We are especially proud that for the second-straight year K-State led the league in Academic All-Big 12 performers, this time with 25 players making the squad. Of course, this is K-State's sixth consecutive bowl game, and again we have among the highest number of players participating having already earned their degree. With 22 graduated student-athletes taking the field Saturday, we rank third out of the 80 bowl teams this year! Also, congrats to Associate Head Coach and Special Teams Coordinator Sean Snyder on being named the national Special Teams Coordinator of the Year by FootballScoop – click here for our full press release.

The first day of 2016 will be highlighted by one of the most unique of all K-State traditions, the annual bowl pep rally, with this year's version set for 12 p.m. at AutoZone Park, home of the Memphis Redbirds just steps away from Beale Street in downtown Memphis. As always the pep rally is free to all - just wear your purple and make some noise. For K-State fans making a late decision to head down to Memphis, we have a few game tickets remaining in our section which you can purchase at the pep rally or online at www.kstatesports.com while they last! The game is a sell-out, so this is the only way to guarantee tickets for any remaining fans. We appreciate the K-State fans from around the country who will be there to turn the Liberty Bowl purple! Also, we would like to caution our fans traveling to Memphis via St. Louis as flooding has affected some highways and routes in and around the city. Be sure and plan ahead and check local radio stations or web postings for updated information.

Click here for more stories and updates about the week’s activities.

Big Saturday for Lots of Cats!
Both our men's and women's basketball teams are 10-2 heading into big conference matchups on Saturday. A special thank you is in order to all the fans filling Bramlage last night and Tuesday night as we had our best crowds of the year for both teams. Saturday morning at 11 a.m. the men entertain No. 17 West Virginia in Bramlage in a game that will be televised by ESPNU. We need a loud crowd in the Octagon of Doom - Tuesday's sold-out crowd made a big difference for our team as they raced away from Saint Louis with a 40-19 edge in the second half for a 75-47 win.

While enjoying a great dinner at Folk's Folly, my favorite Memphis restaurant, thanks to the WatchESPN app on my iPhone I was able to see our women's team's big fourth-quarter comeback live against Iowa State. Even though the Cats came up just a few point short, it is awesome to see the momentum Coach Mittie's team is building - and the renewed interest in our program as evidenced by increasing crowds with each game.

The women head down Fort Worth for a 1 p.m. tip-off Saturday against TCU in newly renovated Schollmaier Arena and then will be back in Bramlage next Wednesday for a 7 p.m. matchup against West Virginia. If you haven't yet seen this team play I promise you that you'll love watching Bre Lewis, Kindred Wesemann, Megan Deines and the rest of the Cats just as much as I do!

Be sure and check k-statesports.com for an updated radio broadcast schedule for Saturday with three games going on in the afternoon.

Special thanks are in order to our game operations, event management and ticket office staffs who have worked so hard throughout the holiday season. Our award-winning Fan Experience staff is available to assist you with any last minute basketball or AutoZone Liberty Bowl needs - just click here for contact information.

The 2015 year has been another special one for K-State Athletics and Kansas State University. As we head into 2016, we'll continue to strive forward toward our Vision of a Model Intercollegiate Athletics Program. Many graduations, victories, championships, facility enhancements are in the future for the K-State #Family, especially when we keep in mind Coach Snyder's Goal No. 3, Unity!

Thank you for your support, and Happy New Year!

Go Cats!

John