K-State Holds Weekly Press Conference


Head Coach Bill Snyder
On Baylor using its backup quarterback…

“I believe in him, and after watching what we can of the youngster, I think he is very capable of embracing the entirety of their playbook based on what they have planned for us. I am sure they do not have the entire playbook for us, but it is probably more of what fits against us. He is very capable, and the thing we overlook sometimes is that he is a freshman, but he was there in December and he has always been the number two guy. He has taken thousands upon thousands of repetitions of what they do, so I think they are very comfortable with him.”

On the K-State offense…
“The shortcoming is that we have had nine points in the last two ball games and that is not a very good statistic to go by. I think we enhanced our running game a little bit against a good defense when we played the University of Texas, but we have not been able to find that balance in Big 12 play. We had two games where we scored fine, but then we hit a brick wall this last outing. We are just at a point where we cannot create new things, but we have to become better at the things that we do. We have to enhance our passing game and continue to enhance our running game to create some balance in our offense, which has been somewhat lacking.”

On Baylor’s spread offense…
“It goes back to balancing your offense. Your defense dictates whether you are going to run it or you are going to throw it. When you spread people out, you have to think about how many you are going to defend the run with and how many people you are going to defend the pass with. You are going to end up being short one way or the other. What you will see with virtually every defense in the country is you will have two or three guys that are playing half and half. Most of the guys get taken advantage of in the course of a ball game. At the end of the day, if you have to boil the water out of it and look at it and what the basis of it is, then they will spread you out and run the daylights out of you.”

On Charles Jones and Justin Silmon…
“To me, it is just playing the best and as hard as you can every time you are out there. I believe that is what is taking place out there. You could put both of them out there on the field, but you would lose some things that we would like to do. You cannot put both of them on the field, so for now it is kind of whoever has hot hands during the ballgame and that has been Charles (Jones).”

On offensive mindset under pressure of facing the top offense in the country…
“Our offense cannot be concerned about their offense. Our offense needs to embody itself within what its capabilities are and what we do and we have to do it with some tenacity. We need a greater spirit and a greater fight, and we have to execute things better. I think we have made some headway in that respect and we need to eliminate mistakes that stop drives. The mistakes that we did make were very critical to stopping drives in the Texas game, and you cannot get too many drives stopped against a team like Baylor. On the same token we have to play defense. We are not going to trade scores with them and I think that is pretty obvious, but we have to play on both sides of the ball to make it happen.”

On Joe Hubener’s biggest troubles in Big 12 play…
“I think the important thing for Joe, as for any quarterback, is the decision-making process. He needs to be able to go through a design in the passing game and a series of reads or progressions and not get stuck on things. You cannot make people get open with your eyes; you just have to move on. If it is there it is there, and if it is not, you go somewhere else. I think that would improve his performance level very quickly to perform above what he is right now.”

On what it will take to win on Thursday…
“I think it will take a very good performance, one that does all of the things we address in here all the time. First and foremost is to eliminate the critical mistakes that put us with our backs to the wall, offensively or defensively and occasionally on special teams. Offensively, we will have to do very well on first downs so we do not always get in those long-yardage situations where the percentage of achieving first downs decreases significantly. Defensively, I think we cannot give up those big plays. Baylor collectively has a substantial number of 20-plus yard plays and we cannot give those up.”

On getting the win after losing four…
“I believe in our youngsters and I believe they are stronger than that. It is not the easiest thing in the world because they are not accustomed to it, none of us are. You have two easy options and one is to stay down and the other is to get up. I trust that our young guys will get up.”

On practices the past week…
“I think if you took the last two practices, what I like varied in the two. It has not been 100 percent consistent, but I really like the genuine spirit. It is so easy to go out and run your mouth because that is what you are expected to do, but this is genuine and the guys are into it. Like I said, it has not been 100 percent consistent, but I like the determined focus to execute the things that they do better than they have. Sometimes they interchange and the spirit is very good, but then that tempers off and the execution comes to the forefront, but I would like to see both of them collectively there. That has happened from time to time during practices.

On keeping the team fired up and motivated…
“What are the options? If I jump in the tank then I will have a lot of followers, but I do not think that is what anybody wants. It just comes with the territory and part of it is because I believe in the young people and what they do and what they are capable of. It is just a matter of trying to get it out there as much as anything.

On what was said in Saturday’s meeting…
“It was nothing extremely different from what I would normally say. We have had a lot of experience here and have been able to have a lot of those kinds of meetings after coming off of a loss. It centered on our approach, attitudes and feelings toward what happened. You can lie in the dirt or you can brush it off and go into the fight again and that is what we need to be. I have addressed what we need in terms of practice and we need the spirit, determination and the focus, and we try to demonstrate how those can take place. We address some of the mistakes in regards to execution and how to get it corrected. It was nothing extraordinarily different from anything that was said before.”

Redshirt Freshman Offensive Lineman Dalton Risner
On Baylor’s defense…
“These guys are good. You have Beau Blackshear, he has been starting for four years, and Andrew Billings, who is up for several awards and has had a great year. These guys are going to come down hill. They have Shawn Oakman on the line, and we are going against one of the best defenses we have played this year. We have gone against great defenses in the Big 12. Oklahoma had a great defense and Oklahoma State and other teams in the top 25. I am just ready to get after it. Last game it was rainy, so we were not able to do what we wanted to do, and then we were on the bye week. It has been a couple weeks since we have been able to get back to what we want to do. It has been awhile since the offense has been able to get out there and do what we do.”

On Baylor’s defense…
“There is nothing you can really see. They sure like to slant a lot, and sometimes you can get them in the gaps, and you can get them on the run. They like slant, so when we catch them on the slant, we can get them out of their gaps. When it is a team like this, it is not technique that you can take advantage of it is getting off the ball and getting after every single play. You cannot take plays off with guys like this on the line, and when you can get past them and get into the second level, we can do quite a bit.”

On the potential of rain on Thursday…
“You know we had a lot of rain in Texas. As the center I hate the rain. The people watching the TV expect the ball to get there every time. I am wiping my hand trying to get the ball back there. I am not nervous about it, but I hope the rain dies down a little bit. Rain or not, we are going to do what we do, and go after them.”

Junior Quarterback Joe Hubener
On how many points the offense has to score on Thursday…
“I do not think you can go in like that. You have to trust your defense and that they are going to slow down their offense. Depending on how much they can do that, it will determine how many points we need to score.”

On playing a game of time of possession…
“Coach always preaches time of possession, and that is always something that as an offense we feel as necessary against a high-powered offense. I think we would like to replicate that to some degree and continue it throughout the whole game.”

Sophomore Linebacker Elijah Lee
On how scary the Baylor offense is…
“Just like any other team in the Big 12, they are one play away from making a big play happening.”

On doing what Coach Snyder said about not giving up any big plays…
“Yeah, if you go back and look at it, K-State has played Baylor pretty well throughout the last couple of seasons and we want to keep that streak going.”

On if the team is excited about the No. 2 team coming in…
“You never have too many experiences like that. We did earlier in the season and I feel like it got out of our hands, but now we have another opportunity.”

On Coach Snyder mentioning he was pretty impressed on how practice went last week…
“Nobody is down; the spirit has actually gotten better since earlier in the season. Everyone is on top of each other saying it’s not over. We still have games to play and have a chance to win.”