Bold and Daring

But any first-play bomb, on-side kick, or wide receiver pass play is nothing more than a quarterback sneak compared to the call the first-year Kansas State football coach made Saturday night. Josh Freeman is our quarterback for the foreseeable future.

The announcement came within 20 minutes after K-State's 17-3 loss to the Baylor Bears when the Wildcats were meager and lacking as an offense. It marked the first game where KSU didn't score a touchdown since the 26-3 loss to Syracuse at the 2001 Insight.com Bowl.

Saturday, Prince only said he felt K-State had a better chance of moving the ball with his 18-year-old true-freshman than with Dylan Meier, a 22-year-old fifth-year senior.

Monday, he offered a further explanation in saying that the 6-foot-6, 238-pound Freeman had the abilities to use more of the field than the talents of the 6-2, 211-pound Meier.

Bold and daring.

Meier has misfired high and misfired low on his share of passes this year, but the fact is he owns a more than decent completion rate of 51 percent through five games.

Always a threat to run, that option has been taken away from Meier with the Prince package of plays. Meier has kept the ball just six times in five games, with the majority, if not all, of those being scrambles away from a pass rush.

What's been billed as the west-coast offense has made Meier single-dimensional, and the fact is, maybe he doesn't have the talents to be a passer only. But the fact also is, Meier has demonstrated the abilities to be a Big 12 winner as a dual pass-run, run-pass threat.

Bold and daring.

Freeman has always been known as Prince's pet project. Don't believe it? Ask Allen Webb. Don't believe it? Ask Allan Evridge. Don't believe it? Ask Dylan Meier.

In three outings, Freeman has been true on under 30 percent of his passes — 14-of-47 — with four interceptions and zero touchdowns.

While armed with a fancy Friday night resume out of Grandview High School, Freeman has done nothing to demonstrate a concept of defensive coverages on Saturdays.

Bold and daring.

This is a no turning back move.

Through this decision, Prince has announced that he has lost faith, confidence and trust in Meier. Should Freeman have a tough go in the next few games — Oklahoma State, Nebraska, at Missouri — it's going to be a tough sell to the team to give the ball back to Meier.

Bold and daring.

While saying Monday that he's not concerned about making the "popular" move, the fact is the Wildcat players liked the relaxed, fun-loving personality of Meier. At this early-stage, it's only natural for the KSU upper classmen to have a wait-and-see attitude with Freeman.

Bold and daring.

No, make that BOLD AND DARING.

Prince apparently made the announcement of the QB switch to the media before telling his two quarterbacks. Meier made a nice post-game cover for his coach saying "... what's said behind closed doors, stays behind closed doors," but he did act surprised to be hit by questions on his benching.

And, Freeman stated as fact that he had not been told that he was the new starter.

If this is the case, it's a severe communication snafu to go to the media prior to telling the two players in question.

Dylan Meier has invested five years in the K-State program; he has proven himself as a starter; he went through an intense rehabilitation process after reconstructive surgery following the 2004 season.

Dylan Meier deserved to be called over to the Vanier office on Sunday, or even Monday before practice, for an in-office coach-to-player, eye-to-eye explanation.

Bold and daring.

There was a strong possibility that K-State could have petitioned the NCAA to get Meier a sixth season to complete his four years of eligibility in 2007. As it stands, one can't think Meier has any interest in such a notion.

If K-State's thin at QB now, just think what next year will be with only Freeman with an ounce of experience.

Here's wishing Mr. Freeman the best. But Freeman over Meier is the boldest and most daring move Prince has made as coach of the Wildcats.


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