Opposing player to watch: Ryan Mueller

Kansas State defensive end Ryan Mueller has Texas Tech's attention after registering three sacks against the Red Raiders in the Wildcats' 49-26 victory over the Red Raiders last season in Lubbock.

Texas Tech’s offensive line has done well for being a young line. The team did not allow a sack in non-conference play and has been a strong point for the Texas Tech football team. It’s about to face one of its toughest challenges though.

Ryan Mueller, a 6-foot-2, 245-pound defensive end, has quickness, strength and speed that makes him dangerous. He’s not the biggest guy in the world, but Mueller is a warrior in trenches and it’s earned him national recognition.

The former walk-on is a 2013 All-American and is currently on three national award watch lists including the Bednarik Award. He definitely has Texas Tech head coach Kliff Kingsbury’s attention after registering three sacks against the Red Raiders in the Wildcats’ 49-26 victory in Lubbock last season.

“Yeah, I think Mueller is a guy from last year that had a good game against us, the D end. As a defense, as a whole, they play together very well," Kingsbury said. "You saw that against a great offense in Auburn. They don't give you anything. You have to earn it all. “

Tech’s starting quarterback will be young. If sophomore Davis Webb cannot play, true freshman Patrick Mahomes will make his first career start. Staying cool under pressure will be a major factor in this game. Mueller primarily lines up at left end in Kansas State’s 4-3 base defense which means Texas Tech veteran right tackle Reshod Fortenberry will be tasked with handling the buzz saw in this senior vs. senior matchup.

The Kansas State defensive line is disciplined. Bill Snyder’s entire squad is currently second in the Big 12 Conference and in the top 20 nationally for fewest penalties per game at 4.75. Texas Tech, on the other hand, is among the worst and many of these are due to holding penalties. The Red Raider offensive line will have their hands full when Ryan Mueller and the Kansas State Wildcats host Texas Tech 6 p.m. Saturday at Bill Snyder Family Stadium in Manhattan, Kansas.

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