Coffman Propels Cats to 4-0 Start

MANHATTAN, Kan. - K-State fans were chanting for a quarterback change much of Saturday afternoon, but coach Bill Snyder stayed patient with Carson Coffman and his quarterback delivered with a dramatic touchdown with 24 seconds remaining to give the Wildcats their only lead of the game, and a 17-13 victory over Central Florida.

Before, and certainly after the winning score, Coffman's teammates were, and are, solidly behind their teammate.

Kansas State fans may be less than enthused about the play of Carson Coffman, but to his teammates, they are 100 percent behind their 4-0 quarterback.

That was demonstrated again on Saturday when Kansas State led for only 24 seconds of a 17-13 victory over Central Florida at Bill Snyder Family Stadium.

Trailing 13-10 with just over five minutes remaining, a stagnant offense came to life with a 13-play, 67-yard drive that Coffman capped with a 7-yard run.

As receiver Aubrey Quarles saw it, "We were trying to keep each other calm because the crowd was going crazy. The coaches were yelling, but we were just trying to keep calm. I just told Carson to take charge of the huddle. That is something my family tells me is part of being a senior."

Center Wade Weibert called the winning drive one of "relaxed urgency."

Defined, that means, "When you're trying to move too fast, it can get chaotic. When you're in an urgency mode, you're moving fast but with a purpose, and you're executing. We were moving fast, but we were keeping calm."

Highlighting the drive was an 18-yard third-down pass to Andre McDonald to keep the drive alive, which was followed by four Daniel Thomas runs that totaled 23 yards, a third-down pass for six yards to Brodrick Smith, and later, Coffman's TD scramble.

"It was designed to be a shovel pass to Daniel, but we also had Tramaine (Thompson) set up outside for a bubble screen," Coffman said. "Both seemed covered, so I found a crease. I wanted to dive and try to stick it in the end zone, but I thought better of it and just tried to spin in."

"Carson did us a great job of leading the entire game," said Weibert. "He made some mistakes, but moved past them and led us to a victory."

Guard Zach Kendall added, "Last week the defense had to go win us a game, but this week the offense had to take charge and win the game.

With Carson, he had control of the huddle. There was no doubt in his eyes." Until that point, K-State's offense was non-existent with nine drives of no more than five plays, and eight drives of no more than nine yards.

"Offensively, we laid a massive egg during the first half and a good portion of the second half, yet when we had to have it, we were able to get it, and that speaks favorably for the young people in our program," said coach Bill Snyder.

At one point in the third quarter there was plenty of doubt. K-State had snapped the ball 36 times for 65 total yards. The 37th play, however, was a 73-yard strike from Coffman to Tramaine Thompson with the QB saying, "That's the play that got the crowd back into it, which was huge for us at the time."

The first quarter yardage favored the Knights 100 yards on 22 plays to the Wildcats' nine snaps that totaled three yards. UCF owned the possession time advantage 10:40 – 4:20. The second quarter was much the same with the visitor's gaining 70 more yards on 14 plays, and K-State 40 yards on 15 snaps.

The victory put K-State at 4-0 for the year going into an Oct. 7 meeting at Bill Snyder Family Stadium with undefeated Nebraska.

The last time the Wildcats opened a season was in 2003 … when they defeated Nebraska and won the Big 12 title.

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