K-State's Bowl Announcement Teleconference

Athletics Director John Currie

On K-State receiving an invitation to the Valero Alamo Bowl…
“I would like to congratulate Coach Snyder and our team on a tremendous year overall. There are 118 teams who would like to be where we are right now and I know our 12,400 alums in Texas are looking forward to having us head down that way with a team that boasts 29 academic all-conference players in our 18th bowl game.”

On K-State not being placed in a New Year’s Six bowl game…
“We were very close. Obviously we saw that the committee had us at No. 11. We were the next one out, essentially. It is what it is. I think our team has proven themselves with a lot of great victories this year. We played five road games in our league, which is something very few teams do nationally. I’m proud of our team and what they accomplished and I’m very grateful to our coach and his leadership and how hard everybody has worked. I’m also proud of our fans – we’ve had 20 consecutive sellouts and set an all-time average attendance record.”

On the progress of ticket sales for the Valero Alamo Bowl…
“Ticket sales are already very strong and I think it’s important to emphasize that we are on sale now and we are in a general sale. If you want tickets to the game in K-State’s allotment, you can call right now and see your location online. This is obviously a wonderful destination. As I mentioned earlier, we have 12,400 alums in the state of Texas and the state of Texas is our No. 1 source of out-of-state students to Kansas State University and our No. 1 destination for alumni after they graduate. Certainly we have a number of student-athletes in all of our programs from the state of Texas. I know we’ll have a really tremendous crowd. (President and CEO) Derrick Fox and the entire Valero Alamo Bowl crew are great folks and we’ve known them for a long time. I know they are very excited to have the K-State Nation come down there. This will be one of the top-ranked bowl matchups this year, including some of the CFP (College Football Playoff) bowls. So it will certainly be one that gives us an opportunity for our 10th victory and finish in the top 10, and that would be an extraordinary accomplishment for the program.”

On the Valero Alamo Bowl moving up in the Big 12 bowl selection order…
“It is the most prestigious bowl from the Big 12 perspective. We certainly have outstanding partners, whether it was the Alamo Bowl or the Russell Athletic Bowl it was going to be a significant reward for our student-athletes. This is a 65,000-seat climate controlled venue (Alamodome) that will have two very highly-ranked teams, both of whom were in the national spotlight this year and both of whom have tremendous players. We have one of the greatest players in our history playing in the game for the last time in a K-State uniform (Tyler Lockett). There is recent history between UCLA and K-State going back to 2010 and 2009 that adds to it a little bit. It’s a great opportunity for us and I’m looking forward to our program representing very well and enjoying those days in Texas.”

Head Coach Bill Snyder
On the invitation to the Valero Alamo Bowl…
“We were well received the previous time and I think they do a wonderful job down there. They really care for the young people in our program. There are a lot of opportunities for them to experience new things. The community was very receptive as well. Having the opportunity to play against UCLA and a Jim Mora coached football team is a great challenge for us – one that I’m sure our youngsters will be excited to get invested in.”

On the team’s mood last night and this morning after the Baylor loss…
“I think everybody was extremely disappointed in the outcome of the ballgame and our performance. That hasn’t changed. I think that’s an accurate assessment, you’d have to ask them, but that was an accurate assessment last night and I don’t think anything has changed today. We had a team meeting today and I think the players were very invested in it as well. I think they are tremendously disappointed and anxious to get on to the next step.”

On the team’s schedule this week…
“We met this afternoon. They will be off Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday of this week and we will meet on Thursday and begin our practices on Friday.”

On the challenge of playing UCLA…
“It’s a very challenging preparation for us. I have great admiration for Jim (Mora) and what he’s done there. They’ve won, I think, 27 ballgames in the past three years. You look at the talent they have – (quarterback Brett) Hundley is a very efficient quarterback as he’s thrown for over 70 percent. He’s the leading passer, or close to it, in UCLA history. Their running back (Paul Perkins) is likewise, averaging 115 or 120 yards per ballgame and over his career has been very successful. It’s a program that is moving in an extremely positive direction. They only have six seniors that they will lose out of their two-deep, so they are certainly having the success they’re having right now and have a great future.”

On younger players benefitting from bowl practices…
“It’s always been my feeling. It’s a great opportunity to have those extra periods of practice that your young people can benefit from without it drawing back from the preparation of the young people playing in the game. Everybody gets the opportunity to improve themselves. We get 15 opportunities to do that and a lot of teams do, so it’s kind of staying up with the Jones’s, but there are a number of teams who don’t have those opportunities as well.”