If it comes down to a kick, Kansas State will be ready.
During the 15-minute window of time the media was allowed to observe the Wildcats’ last practice before their bowl game on Thursday, K-State kickers took turns practicing game-scenario field goals. Every attempt from 20, 30, 40 yards and beyond, glided through the posts and into the parking lot of Scottsdale Community College, pelting the tops of the media shuttles that were parked directly behind the practice field.
Kansas State runs closed practices just like Oregon does, but this week leading up to the two programs’ collision in the Fiesta Bowl, a small glimpse to the reporting horde is permitted. Some members of the Kansas State athletic department said that most practices run pretty long, and head coach Bill Snyder has his boys in full pads “grinding it out.”
Oregon is known for quick practices in which no player is stationary, as the Ducks run through loads of reps and run from drill to drill.
Such was not the case for the Wildcats on Tuesday, as the practice (at least during the time media was there) seemed like the equivalency of a basketball shoot-around, with most players standing around tossing footballs casually.
Kansas State’s star quarterback and offensive centerpiece, Collin Klein partook in walk-through snaps with his offensive line, while the mock defense opposite him was comprised (strangely) entirely of offensive lineman. Klein did nothing more than catch the snap in the shotgun while his O-Line lightly engaged its counterpart.
On another field, there was a faster-paced scrimmage of sorts, with offensive players focused mainly on running through plays while the defense reacted but did not tackle.
There were at least 20 or so players (including starters) who threw footballs back and forth laughing on the sideline, while defensive lineman ran shorts receiving routes to catch light passes from coaches.
With the media watching and just a few days from gameday, a lack of intensity is expected but the general feeling was that the Wildcats weren’t going to practice anything serious with so many cameras and notepads out.