A Letter from A.D. John Currie - January 26, 2016

Good Morning K-State Nation!

I hope everyone has had a great start to their week; here in Manhattan the students are back with the spring semester now in full swing, and our winter and spring athletic competitions are starting to heat up. The scene in Bramlage was terrific on Saturday for our big men's basketball win over Oklahoma State, and we have several key men’s and women’s games coming up beginning with tonight's men's game at West Virginia. On Saturday, we have a Wildcat double-header as the men face Ole Miss at 1 p.m., in the Big 12/SEC Challenge and the women welcome No. 6 Texas to town at 7 p.m. We need the Octagon packed and loud as our teams battle through the strong schedule of the nation’s toughest basketball conference. And congrats to Coach Mittie and the women’s team on their fourth straight Big 12 Conference win following Sunday’s 65-53 win over Texas Tech in Lubbock!

This weekend will be buzzing with activity as many of our former women’s basketball student-athletes will be returning for a special department-sponsored reunion. Among those returning are former All-Americans Nicole Ohlde and Kendra Wecker who are also a part of our 10-member K-State Athletics Hall of Fame induction class that will be honored on Friday and Saturday. You can watch Friday night’s induction ceremony live on K-StateHD.TV beginning at 7:30 p.m. CST, while the class will also be recognized at halftime of the Ole Miss men’s basketball game. This year’s class is a great group representing six different sports and includes current Associate Head Coach and former Consensus All-American Sean Snyder (football) as well as Steve Anson (baseball), Michael Bishop (football), Dawn Cady (volleyball), Martin Gramatica (football), Mitch Holthus (former Voice of the Wildcats), Max Moss (men’s basketball/contributor) and Connie Teaberry (track and field) in addition to Nicole and Kendra. We are excited to have both these former basketball letterwinners and our newest hall of fame inductees and their families back in Manhattan!

Records Fly at Star-Studded DeLoss Dodds Invitational
Some of the best track and field athletes in the world were in Manhattan this past weekend, and I enjoyed spending several hours on Friday watching all of these competitors in action, including our own Akela Jones who came just a few points shy of setting a new indoor collegiate pentathlon record while shattering meet and facility records in the event. As many as 11 Olympic hopefuls, from current team members to former Wildcats and a few from opposing institutions, were competing and the level of competition at the event this past weekend was world-class. I know Coach Rovelto and his staff are excited about the upcoming indoor and outdoor seasons, and we look forward to following our team’s progress this season and also this summer as the Rio Olympic Games draw closer. Saturday, February 27, will be a big day for the Wildcats as the track team will be in Ames for the Big 12 Indoor Championships, while the men’s basketball team will also be in action at Hilton Coliseum. Tip time for the basketball game should be announced soon. Lastly, be sure and check this week’s edition of Sports Illustrated as a familiar Wildcat face may be featured in its “Faces in the Crowd” section!

Spring Game/Auction Set for April 22, 23
Be sure and mark your calendars for the weekend of April 23 as we have set dates for our annual Powercat Auction (April 22) and Purple/White Spring Game (April 23) which will both be held in Manhattan. While we will have a full list of auction items as we draw closer to the event, I would like to tell you about a very special package that will be on this year’s live auction. In conjunction with the season-opening football game against Stanford, we will have a three day, two-night, postgame personal Napa Wine Tour for up to three couples that will be hosted by Carl and Mary Ice. This package includes lodging, wine tour transportation, meals and game tickets to the September 2 ballgame in Palo Alto. You can contact our Ahearn Fund office at (785) 532-5282 for more information on this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Also, be on the lookout soon for some additional news on Ahearn Fund membership!

255 Wildcats Named to Big 12 Honor Roll
Our student-athletes continue to turn in remarkable performances both on the field and in the classroom, and a total of 255 of our student-athletes were named to the Fall Big 12 Commissioner’s Honor Roll this week. Of those 255 that were recognized, 60 recorded a GPA of 4.0! All of these student-athletes, in addition to our coaches, staff and academic services personnel are to be commended, and you can read our full release online at k-statesports.com.

Before I close today, I hope you had a chance to read Monday’s special K-State Sports Extra written by football senior Stanton Weber. I appreciate what Stanton has done and accomplished during his time at K-State, and I look forward to following his career path following his time at K-State!

Lastly, congrats to Coach Steinberg and the tennis team on their 7-0 sweep of Missouri State over the weekend. Remember to always follow k-statesports.com, twitter (@kstatesports) and facebook (K-State Sports) for all of the latest news, stories, results and videos surrounding the Wildcats!

We will see you this weekend for another Wildcat basketball double-header!

Go Cats!

John