Waters Leads K-State Past Tech, 45-13

Postgame Notes

MANHATTAN, Kan. – K-State Football (4-1, 2-2) continued its hot start to the season, steamrolling Texas Tech (2-3, 0-2) 45-13 in front of 52,726 faithful at Bill Snyder Family Stadium. The No. 23-ranked Wildcats put in a near flawless effort that saw K-State dominate on both sides of the ball, including a season-high 535 total yards on offense – 290 through the air and 245 on the ground.

As has been the case for most of the season, the Wildcats were ignited by an impressive performance from quarterback Jake Waters. The senior signal-caller was unstoppable, racking up 395 total yards and five total touchdowns on 24-of-31 passing for 290 yards and 105 yards rushing on 17 carries. Waters, in the process, tied a school record with four passing touchdowns and his total offense was the most by a K-State quarterback since Josh Freeman gained a school-record 501 yards on Oct. 25, 2008 against Oklahoma.

The strong effort from Waters opened up the way for highlight reel showings from several Wildcats. Tyler Lockett and Curry Sexton both eclipsed the century mark as well as hauled in two scores. Lockett nabbed a game-high 12 receptions for 125 yards, while Sexton racked up a career-best 128 yards receiving on nine receptions. On the ground, Charles Jones and DeMarcus Robinson complemented Waters with a combined 122 yards rushing with the former averaging five yards-per-carry and the latter scoring from two yards out to cap off the 32-point victory. 

In its four wins this season, the Wildcats have now beaten their opponents by an average of 26.25 points.

• Texas Tech looked primed to take the lead on its opening drive, but saw its drive end with an interception in the end zone. The pick came on second-and-five from the Wildcats’ 7-yard line, as Davis Webb had his errant pass land in the hands of Morgan Burns to end the 11-play, 63-yard drive.
• Starting the subsequent drive on its own 20-yard line, K-State wasted little time taking advantage of the Red Raider miscue. Jake Waters connected with Curry Sexton to give the Wildcats a 7-0 lead, a 48-yard touchdown that capped an 8-play, 80-yard drive in 3:57. The scoring drive was made possible by a key third-down conversion that came two plays earlier, as K-State converted on third-and-nine via a 10-yard reception by Tyler Lockett.
• The Wildcat defense took over from there, throttling Texas Tech to 13 total yards on nine plays in its next two drives. The strong effort allowed Waters to lead K-State down the field for a score and a 14-0 advantage early in the second quarter. The senior signal-caller, who picked up the TD on a four-yard plunge, was dominant, accounting for 66 of the 69 total yards on the drive, including a career-long 50-yard run to the Texas Tech 8-yard line.
• Not even a minute later, K-State’s offense was given the ball back thanks to a tipped Webb pass landing in the arms of defensive back Travis Green. Starting the drive on their 39-yard line, K-State would tack on another three points for a 17-0 lead via a 27-yard Matt McCrane field goal.
• Texas Tech responded with a score of its own, making it a 17-7 game, as Webb hit Jakeem Grant from 22 yards out. The key play of the drive came on some trickery from the Red Raider squad, as Webb threw the ball out in the flat to halfback DeAndre Washington only to have Washington toss it back to Webb. From there, the sophomore hit an open Jordan Davis for a 26-yard gain to give Texas Tech the ball at K-State’s 25-yard line.
• After forcing a K-State punt, Texas Tech was denied any chance to build momentum, as the Wildcat defense held serve, allowing no yards for the second Red Raider three-and-out of the evening. The Wildcat offense would close out the half extending their lead to 24-7 with a 15-yard score through the air from Waters to Lockett. The touchdown made it 14 points for K-State following a Texas Tech three-and-out. 

• Save for a fourth-and-one stop by the Red Raiders defense on their own 21-yard line, action in the third quarter hit a lull until Waters and Lockett connected for the second time on the night to balloon the K-State lead to 31-7. Scoring from 14 yards out, the 8-play, 66-yard drive saw Waters and Lockett hook up three times for 25 yards. 
• K-State’s defensive unit was relentless all night, forcing another turnover in the third – this time Webb misfired deep, giving Green his second interception of the night. The Red Raiders would get the ball soon after though on a forced turnover of their own, as a Charles Jones fumble gave Texas Tech the ball on their own 43-yard line.
• From there, Texas Tech responded with a touchdown and a failed 2-point conversion to make the score 31-13 at the start of the fourth quarter.
• Bouncing back from the turnover, Waters and Sexton led K-State to a 38-13 lead thanks to a circus one-handed catch by the latter from 3 yards out. The sixth scoring drive of the evening was possible by Waters and Sexton connecting for 39 yards on the fifth play of the drive, giving K-State the ball at the Texas Tech 5-yard line. 
• K-State would close out the game with yet another score. Getting the ball at their own 38-yard line after Burns picked up his second pick of the night, DeMarcus Robinson matriculated the ball down the field, ending the drive with 2-yard score to make it 45-13 Wildcats. The drive was all Robinson, as the senior halfback carried the rock nine times for 33 yards, including a 22-yard jaunt to give K-State the ball at the Red Raider 14-yard line.

• The Wildcats’ effort was not only dominant, but disciplined as well. K-State recorded only one penalty for 15 yards compared to Texas Tech’s nine-for-89 yards. It was the third time this season the Wildcats have committed less penalties than their opponents, as well as the third time they have accumulated 15 yards or less of penalty yardage. K-State also won the turnover battle handedly, 4-to-1, continuing the series trend of protecting the ball – the Jones fumble lost was the first K-State turnover against Texas Tech since 2009.
• K-State’s defense continued what has been an outstanding performance to begin the season. The rush defense, which entered the game allowing 90.2 yards per, held an opponent under 100 yards rushing for the third time this season. In fact, Texas Tech was held to season-lows in rushing (46 yards) and total offense (347 yards) on 64 plays from scrimmage.

Hitting the road for only the second time this season, K-State will travel to Norman, Oklahoma on Oct. 18 to square off against the No. 4-ranked Oklahoma Sooners (4-1, 1-1).