2011 Prediction & Game Story
Week 11, Texas A&M at KSU
Big 12 Fearless Predictions &
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Nov. 12 at Kansas State 53 … Texas A&M 50 4OT
CFN Analysis: In any other conference, Collin Klein would be the signature player. He was unbelievable a week after being unbelievable against Oklahoma State running 35 times for 103 yards and five scores, and completing 17-of-27 passes for 281 yards and a touchdown with an interception. … The offense didn’t even pretend to do much of anything else. This was Klein’s game, his comeback, and his win, marching the team late again. It’s almost like he learned from the OSU loss how to come through in the clutch, making up for the one misfire that closed out last week’s game. … Again, this is said every week, the formula is the formula. KSU held on to the ball for over 34 minutes, only committed one penalty, and was only -1 in turnover margin. … There was no pass rush, but the secondary did a far better job after getting torched by OSU’s Brandon Weeden. … With this win, and with Oklahoma and Oklahoma State out of the way, a ten-win season is possible with wins over Texas and Iowa State.
Texas A&M had the lead in the fourth quarter. You know how it ended. … Cyrus Gray did a terrific job of picking up the slack for the loss of Christine Michael with 218 yards and two scores, making up for a mediocre game from Ryan Tannehill. The A&M O line did a good job, but Tannehill was off until overtime. … The defensive line had a rough time with Collin Klein and the KSU running game, but Damontre Moore was fantastic, making 12 tackles with two sacks, 3.5 tackles for loss, and a forced fumble. … Mike Sherman must not have been noticing that his defense couldn’t come up with a stop. He’ll be second-guessed the rest of the year for going for the field goal in the fourth OT over trying for a touchdown. … On a three-game losing streak, the Aggies should get the sixth win needed for a bowl against Kansas next week, but it’ll take a win over Texas to get to 7-5 before bolting to the SEC.
(AP) MANHATTAN, Kan. -- Collin Klein scored on a quarterback sneak in the fourth overtime Saturday night, his sixth touchdown of the game, giving Kansas State (No. 14 BCS, No. 17 AP) a dramatic 53-50 victory over Texas A&M.
Klein threw for a career-high 281 yards and added 103 yards on the ground for the Wildcats (8-2, 5-2 Big 12), who rallied from a 10-point deficit in the final 6 minutes of regulation to hand the Aggies (5-5, 3-4) their third consecutive loss.
The Aggies had the ball first in the fourth overtime and moved down to the Kansas State 3 before their drive stalled. Facing fourth-and-1, Texas A&M coach Mike Sherman played it safe and choose to kick a field goal, and that gave Kansas State the opening it needed.
Klein pounded forward for three yards on third-and-3 at the 18 for a first down, and a pass interference call on the Aggies' Toney Hurd Jr. in the end zone gave Kansas State the ball at the 2.
Klein went straight up the middle twice, getting across the goal line on his second try as the crowd erupted. The Wildcats poured off the sideline to celebrate the victory, piling up at the goal line before heading over to the student section on the east side of the stadium.
Cyrus Gray ran for 218 yards and two touchdowns, and Ryan Tannehill threw for 210 yards and three touchdowns to lead the Aggies, who lost in overtime to Missouri two weeks ago and fell to Oklahoma last week. They'll need to beat Kansas or Texas in their remaining two games to become bowl eligible.
It looked like they'd take care of that in regulation Saturday night.
The game was tied at 21 early in the fourth quarter when Kansas State's John Hubert fumbled at his own 29. The Aggies' Terrence Frederick recovered the ball, and Gray scored the go-ahead touchdown when he went virtually untouched right up the middle from 7 yards out.
Gray sprang free for a 63-yard run moments later, setting up a 17-yard field goal by Texas A&M's Randy Bullock that made it 31-21 with 6:38 remaining.
Accustomed to late-game pressure, Kansas State never buckled.
Klein hit Chris Harper in stride for a 53-yard touchdown pass that pulled the Wildcats within a field goal with 5:49 left. The defense forced Texas A&M into three-and-out, and Kansas State took over at its own 32 with 4:40 left. Two 15-yard penalties on the defense helped the Wildcats move down field, and Anthony Cantele's 44-yard field goal into the wind tied the game.
That's how it remained at the end of regulation.
The Wildcats had the ball first in overtime and took just three plays to score. Klein slithered up the middle from 9 yards out and fumbled just shy of the goal line, but wide receiver Tramaine Thompson was there to recover it for a touchdown.
The Aggies answered when Tannehill hit Jeff Fuller on a 9-yard slant route for a score.
The teams traded field goals in the second overtime, and Klein wasted no time in the third extra session. Dropping back to pass, he noticed the left side of the field clear out and took off in a dead sprint for the pylon, going untouched 25 yards for the touchdown.
The Wildcats failed to convert the 2-point try, and Texas A&M nearly made them pay.
Faced with fourth-and-goal at the 8-yard line, Tannehill deftly sidestepped a defender in the backfield and found Uzoma Nwachukwu in the corner of the end zone for the tying score. But his throw to Fuller on the Aggies' 2-point try bounced incomplete, sending the game to a fourth overtime.
That's all that Kansas State would need.
Texas A&M (5-4) at Kansas State (7-2) Nov. 12, 3:30, ABC/ESPN3
Even in a loss, Kansas State proved last week it’s for real in a wild and crazy 52-45 loss to Oklahoma State, seen by the 16 people who got bored of LSU-Alabama. Collin Klein and the offense were terrific, and the defense was opportunistic, if not effective. But the loss also showed that the team isn’t settling for just being good this year. It was a bounceback moment from the 58-17 blasting from Oklahoma, and it was a moment that showed the Wildcats are going to be in the hunt for a possible top three conference finish. First, they have to get by Texas A&M, and then Texas. Do that, and the first ten-win season since 2003 is possible.
Texas A&M is already packing its bags for the SEC, and despite being a disappointing 5-4, it’s still very dangerous and very good.
The Aggies lost three games by a touchdown or less, losing to Arkansas and Texas Tech by a total of five points and losing to Missouri, more like collapsing against Missouri, in overtime. And then came the chance to turn it all around at Oklahoma last week, but the defense got blown out of the water in the third quarter and the rally fell short in the fourth for a 41-25 loss. Either the slide stops now, or the Mike Sherman hot seat will start to flame up.
Kansas State won the last matchup in 2009, 62-14, but Texas A&M is 5-2 in the last seven meetings starting with, arguably, the greatest game in the history of the Big 12, the 1998 championship. If the two teams play up to their capabilities, they have the potential to play another classic.
Why Texas A&M Might Win: The Kansas State defense hasn’t held up all that well, and it’s been next-level bad in the secondary over the last two games, giving up a total of 1,024 yards and nine touchdowns against Oklahoma and Oklahoma State. While the secondary came up with four turnovers, it wasn’t nearly enough. Without much of a pass rush to worry about, A&M quarterback Ryan Tannehill should be able to let the downfield plays develop and he should be able to push the ball deep on a regular basis against a secondary that has a hard time with receivers in space.
For Kansas State to be effective, dominating the time of possession and coming up with big plays on third downs is a must. Kansas State is good, Texas A&M is better, with the Aggies converting 48% of their chances compared to 47%. However …
Why Kansas State Might Win: The Aggies aren’t great defensively on third downs, allowing teams to convert 42.4% of the time, while Kansas State is strong allowing just 36.28% of conversions. The biggest key for KSU won’t be defense, it’ll be the running attack that should give the Aggies fits. The A&M pass defense is the worst in the nation because of all the great air attacks it’s faced, but Missouri was able to run the ball with mobile quarterback James Franklin running for 97 yards and two scores and Henry Josey taking off for 162 yards and a touchdown. Kansas State should do Mizzou one better.
Collin Klein threw shockingly well against Oklahoma State, but he kept the team in the game on the ground, running for 144 yards and three touchdowns as part of a 276-yard rushing day for the offense. The pass plays will be there against an A&M defense that cheats up to stop the run, but even so, Klein and John Hubert will be able to run well enough to control the clock, while the offense should unleash its weapon …
What To Watch Out For:
Tyler Lockett, who did a little bit of everything against Oklahoma State with 84 rushing yards on three carries, three catches for 32 yards and a score, and returning six kickoffs for 193 yards. The true freshman is second in the nation in kickoff returns and he’s growing into a whale of an all-purpose runner who needs to be watched and worried about all game long.
Also an elite kickoff returner – at least as a next-level prospect – is Texas A&M senior Cyrus Gray. The 5-10, 198-pounder is one of the Big 12’s fastest players and is a special, NFL-caliber playmaker with sub-4.4 speed and great cutting ability. However, his role has been diminished a bit, only used as a return man in the loss against Arkansas and only getting the ball nine times for 29 yards last week. The senior started out the season with two 100-yard games and four touchdowns, both wins, and the team is 4-0 this year when he runs for 100 yards or more, and going back to last year, the record is 10-1 – with the lone loss the bowl game to LSU – when hitting the century mark. With running mate Christine Michael out for the year with a knee injury, the ground game is Gray’s now.
What Will Happen: Kansas State will be on the right side of yet another fun shootout. The Aggies will have control early on, but the Wildcats will chip away and chip away, and once against the fourth quarter collapse will come. Klein missed on his game-winning throw opportunity last week. He’ll connect this time around.
CFN Prediction: Kansas State 34 … Texas A&M 31
Click For Latest Line From ATS: Texas A&M -4.5 O/U: 64
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