SE: Snyder Talks Character Over Winning

Head coach Bill Snyder has won 159 games, Big 12 North titles and one overall Big 12 title in his tenure.

May 30, 2012

This feature appeared in the Wednesday edition of the K-State Sports Extra.

By Mark Janssen

It’s all in the record books: 159 wins, four Big 12 North titles and an overall Big 12 championship won in 2003.
To those numbers, however, Kansas State football coach Bill Snyder says, “People get too caught up about the scoreboard reads.  To me, what is really important is what are you doing to help young people become successful in life?”
That’s the message Snyder recently delivered to an event hosted by the Abilene (Kan.) Area Chamber of Commerce.
Snyder told the gathering that at times the lives of young people are sacrificed “… just to get more points on the scoreboard.  I think that is wrong.”
He would add that he came to K-State in 1989 not to win football games, but to influence the lives of young people in a positive way, such as Abilene’s own Curry Sexton and Cody Whitehair, who will both be significant factors on this year’s Wildcat team.

“I told our players that it is important, and you have to believe that it is important, to get better every single day.  You cannot be judged, or allow yourself to be judged, by what the scoreboard says,” Snyder emphasized.  “You need to judge yourself based on your improvement every single day as a person, as a student and as a football athlete.

“We have lost sight as to what athletics is all about,” he added.  “Many of us can go back to when we played and we played because we enjoyed playing because it was fun.  Sometimes you would win and sometimes you would lose, but you enjoyed the competition.  You realized after a period of time that it helped you in life.  We have so lost sight of that and we are going in a very bad direction.”
Within the K-State program, Snyder said he strives to recruit student-athletes who want to be successful, and, want to be leaders.

But, he quoted a National Education Association survey that indicated that while most everyone sets goals, only 50 percent develop a plan to achieve those goals, and only five percent actually achieve their goals.

With his 100-plus Wildcat team members, he says as the head coach “… sometimes our players need help with their plans.”

That includes a degree of work and perseverance, which is common place in the Sunflower State.

“One thing I love about the state of Kansas is its perseverance,” said Snyder, a native of St. Joseph, Mo.

Mentioning how Abraham Lincoln lost seven elections before becoming President of the United States, and how Walt Disney filed for bankruptcy twice before realizing his goal of making movies, he said, “It boils down to perseverance and not giving in.”

SUMMER CAMPS COMING UP: K-State head football coach Bill Snyder and the Wildcat coaching staff will host five football camps during the summer months for players of all ages.
Kicking off the summer events will be the Kicking Camp 1 session from June 6-7 for high school players, while the 7-on-7 and 5-on-5 Shootout camps for high school teams will begin on June 9.  The following day, June 10, will be the annual Youth Camp for those players in grades 1-8.
Also beginning on June 10 and running through June 12 will be the High School Fundamental Camp for ninth-12th graders, while Kicking Camp II will close out the summer camps on June 13-14.
More information regarding K-State’s 2012 football camps, including prices and registration info, is available at under the camps link of the football page.  Questions regarding any of the camps should be directed to the K-State football office at (785) 532-5876 or by email at
K-State Football Camps provide instruction and are open to any and all entrants, limited by number, age, grade level, and/or gender.