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Posted by on October 16th, 2011 in blog, Brady Baylor, CFF Features, Uncategorized | No Comments

Yes, here we go with another “resurgence of the Kansas State Wildcat football program under former and once-again head coach Bill Snyder post” on CFF.com.  Well, as far as I know, it’s actually the first of its kind here, but I felt the time was now based on their star having fallen so hard and risen so fast yet again under Snyder.  Truth be told, I wanted to get this in prior to a four-week stretch during which they’ll host Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Texas A&M, and then visit Texas, which will likely prove to feature a measure of turbulence for the Cats.  Having said that, how about those Wildcats from Kansas State, huh?  After tasting success under Snyder’s first run from 1929-1945 (actually, 1989-2005), Kansas State fans are again finding good cause to make the trip to Manhattan and fill the seats of Bill Snyder Family Stadium to watch their Cats scratch and claw their way into a fresh AP #12 ranking.  Naturally, I could go on and on about the City of Manhattan itself, but all you really need to know is that the Poyntz Avenue Improvements Meeting will be held at 6:00 p.m. on Wednesday, October 19 down at city hall (this according to the city’s official website).

After a three-year hiatus to spend time with family, Bill realized that he wasn’t much of a family man after all and returned to the sidelines again in 2009 (writer’s note: it cannot be verified that Snyder is not a family man, but the statement seemed to tie in nicely with the stadium name).  While these are not your father’s Wildcats, with freshman linebacker Tate Snyder on the roster, they are indeed his grandfather’s Wildcats.

B.S. (before Snyder):

To put Snyder’s accomplishments in perspective, here are a few noteworthy facts, figures, and erroneous shots at the program (for flavor):

-Prior to Snyder’s arrival in 1989, Kansas State had never won a football game since they started playing over 93 years earlier (not exactly true, but they were riding a 27-game losing streak and had only enjoyed two winning seasons in the prior 34).

-The football team’s only conference title had come some 55 years before.

-They had just been dubbed “Futility U” and “America’s Most Hapless Team” by Sports Illustrated.

-The school had won no bowl games in exactly one try.

Notable achievements since the arrival of the Silver Fox (Snyder’s nickname):

-won only their second conference title, in 2003

-beginning in 1993, went to 11 consecutive bowl games, winning 6

-held the nation’s #1 ranking during the 1998 season

-established a 136-68-1 record by the time Snyder first retired

-were much better than before he got there

While Snyder looks like the crusty old owner of Curmudgeon’s Heating and Plumbing Services, he has truly been the architect of an amazing feat at Kansas State; that is, making them good at football by any measure, and appears to be leading the program through a bit of a renaissance currently.  His coaching tree has taken an equally impressive path, claiming current head coaches of the #3 Oklahoma Sooners (Bob Stoops) and #4 Wisconsin Badgers (Brett Bielema), as well as recently dispatched Arizona head coach Mike Stoops, and erstwhile Kansas head coach Mark Mangino whom, incidentally, the hot dog booths at Bill Snyder Family Stadium are named after.

Who knows how long this remarkable rerun to glory can last for the Wildcats, but it seems to indicate, at a minimum, that the Silver Fox can do a little bit of coaching.

 

 

 

 

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