2012 Ranks Up There With The Best Year Ever

MANHATTAN, Kan. - It was fun during the course of the year to lob out comparisons of this 2012 Kansas State football team to those significant ones of the past … in particular 1998.

In October and November the conversations made for great debate as to which of those two teams – 1998 or 2012 – was better, and, today the chatter continues with remarkable similarities.

Considering the following in making your "best ever" Wildcat team selection. Record: 1998 – 11-2; 2012 – 11-2

Closing the year:
1998 – KSU lost its last two games, which included one in the Big 12 title game that kept the ‘Cats out of the national championship game;

2012 – KSU lost two of its last three games, which included one to Baylor in Week 11 that likely kept the ‘Cats out of the national championship game.

Heisman Talk:
1998 – Michael Bishop finished second in the voting; 2012 – Collin Klein finished third in the voting.

By the numbers:
1998 – Bishop accumulated 3,592 yards of total offense for a school record;

2012 – Klein totaled 3,561 yards, or just 29 fewer than Bishop, or, a measly two yards per game.

By the numbers:
1998 – Eric Hickson rushed for 902 yards;

2012 – John Hubert rushed for 947 yards.

By the numbers:
1998 – Hickson and Bishop combined for rush for 144 yards per game and scored 23 TDs;

2012 – Hubert and Klein averaged 144 rushing yards and scored 38 TDs.

By the numbers:
1998 – Mark Simoneau accumulated 95 tackles;

2012 – Arthur Brown scored 100 tackles.

By the numbers:
1998 – David Allen averaged 22.1 yards on punt returns; 2012 – Tramaine Thompson averaged 19.8 yards. By the numbers: 1998 – Frank Murphy averaged 26.3 yards on kickoff returns;

2012 – Tyler Lockett averaged 32.8 yards.

By the numbers:
1998 – The defense forced 33 turnovers and the offense gave up 19;

2012 – the defense forced 33 turnovers and the offense gave up 12.

By the "E" words:
1998 – This Wildcat gang was more "explosive" on offense averaging 478 yards and 48 points, and the "Lynch Mob" defense was absolutely relentless allowing just 268 yards and 13 points per game;

2012 – This year's team was equally "efficient" in its own way averaging 39 points on 401 yards, and the defense was stingy allowing 22 points on 375 yards per game.

By the "D" word
… discipline: 1998 – That team was lacking as flags flew 118 times for 993 yards;

2012 – This team had it as KSU was flagged just 49 times for 403 yards.

While the results were eerily the same, the biggest difference was the 1998 team did it with all-star power as Gramatica, Kelly, Young, Bishop, Swift and McDonald all went in the NFL Draft, while this year it was "Team" K-State that made the 2012 group so very special.

So, take your pick …. 1998, or, 2012. It's hard to go wrong.

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