Jake Waters, QB: Completed 159 of 260 attempts for 2,469 yards, with 18 TDs and 9 INTs. Also rushed for 312 yards.
DeMarcus Robinson, RB: 5 carries, 20 yards and no TDs last year. And he’s the Wildcats’ most experienced returning rusher.
Tyler Lockett, WR: 81 catches for 1,262 yards and 11 TDs, including a 90-yarder. One of the Big 12’s most exciting players.
About the Wildcats’ triplets:
Kansas State is old school. The 74-year-old Bill Snyder isn’t going to change what made him win so many games that the Wildcats named their football stadium for him.
He still relies on the run and still uses a rugged quarterback who will try to beat teams via play action.
This year, his quarterback situation is settled. Jake Waters, a one-time junior college transfer, started all 13 games last year, but Snyder often would bring in Daniel Sams as a change of pace option. Sams didn’t throw well, but he befuddled defenses with his feet, rushing for 807 yards and 11 touchdowns.
Waters accounted for 213.9 yards, 190 through the air, each game last season. Although he didn’t amass yards like some of the other quarterbacks in the league, his 15.5 yards per completion was fourth best in the nation.
“His level of confidence I think has grown immensely,” Snyder said. “I think that experience from last year has benefited him greatly, as it should, with any young guy. And he’s embraced it. “
Sams requested a move to receiver in the spring, then transferred to McNeese State.
Receiver Tyler Lockett, the son and the nephew of two former Kansas State stars, likely will make Waters’ passing numbers all the more nifty.
Lockett had seven games of at least 100 yards in receiving, including outings of 237 in a loss at Texas and 278 in defeat against Oklahoma. Add his returns, Lockett brutalized OU for 440 yards of all-purpose yards. That’s the fifth-best performance in FBS history.
He needs 75 receptions, 838 yards and nine touchdowns to break all three school career records held by his father, Kevin.
Snyder said: “He’s one of those guys that you leave the practice field, you go in your office, you look out the window and you’ve got the equipment managers out there twiddling their thumbs wanting to get the lights turned off and Tyler won’t let them because he’s out there catching balls off the machine and keeping quarterbacks out to throw to him. He’s just a young guy that he’s got all his marbles in the right place.”
But who will win the starting tailback job?
John Hubert, the second-leading rusher in Wildcats history, has taken his talents to the NFL.
There’s a three-way competition for the starting job between senior DeMarcus Robinson and sophomores Charles Jones and Jarvis Leverett.
Robinson, with 11 career carries, is the only one with game experience.
Tomorrow’s triplets: West Virginia
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