Fiesta Saturday: Bowl Day 2

He said he started "moving around and doing some stuff" following the Texas game, and today he says, "I feel great. The biggest thing is mentally getting back into the game. I just have a greater appreciation for the game after sitting out for that time."

Asked if there's anything he "can't" do, Zimmerman said, "I haven't seen anything yet."

Overall, Zimmerman, a first-team All-Big 12 selection and third-team All-American pick, said of the year, "It's been a fun season being a part of something special. This will be a great chance to close things out the right way."

HEADING TO THE NFL?: The name of Chip Kelly has been rumored for more than one NFL coaching position in the last few weeks. When the Oregon head coach was asked if the rumor had become a distraction, he said, "It doesn't bother me. It gives you guys (media) stuff to write about, so I think you're entertained by it. But because I don't read it, it doesn't' mean anything to me."

HAWAII TO OREGON: Oregon freshman quarterback Marcus Mariota made an immediate impact for the Ducks passing for 2,511 yards with 30 touchdowns and just six interceptions. A native of Honolulu, Hawaii, where he was tabbed the No. 6 recruiting prospect in the state and the No. 12 overall quarterback in the nation, the 6-foot-4, 211-pound Mariota was the Pac-12's Offensive Freshman of the Year.

Of his accomplishments, he said, "I have these visions. I always try to hold myself to a high standard. But to have the success we've had this season, and to have the success that I have personally had, it's been unreal."

The Ducks average 550 yards per game of offense - 323 rushing and 227 passing - and score 50.8 points per game.

But for the Wildcats, Mariotta smiled as he said, "I'm sure coach Kelly will add some tweaks here and there."


  • It was fun to run into Lynn Larson at the Saturday morning press conference. Larson played for the Wildcats in 1968 and 1969 under Vince Gibson, and later became the first Wildcat to ever play in a Super Bowl. We'll have more on Larson later in the week.
  • The 22,500-plus Fiesta Bowl tickets distributed through the K-State ticket office were tops in the Big 12 and third only to Stanford (Rose Bowl) and Ole Miss (Compass Bowl) for tickets sold through participating schools.
  • Today's K-State schedule will include a Chapel/Mass opportunity at 8:15, followed by select members of the offense attending a press conference, followed by a 12:30 practice at Scottsdale Community College.
  • Tonight, the players will be treated to a steak dinner as Mastro's Steakhouse.