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Sunflower Showdown

POSTED October 20, 2011 10:34 p.m.

No. 12 K-State (6-0)
at Kansas (2-4),
11 a.m.

Line: Kansas State by 11.
Series record: Kansas leads 65-38-5.

The Wildcats are on a charmed ride under Bill Snyder, who’s in his third season after coming out of retirement. His first rebuilding job took Kansas State to unprecedented heights in the late 1990s, and this one is heading that direction. The Jayhawks have lost four straight but can salvage their season by spoiling a high-profile showdown next week between their I-70 rival and No. 3 Oklahoma.

Kansas State QB Collin Klein vs. the Jayhawks’ nation-worst defense. Klein gets it done through the air despite a funky throwing motion, but his real danger is one the ground, where he makes good decisions in a unique version of the veer offense. Kansas is allowing 565 yards of total offense on average, about 30 yards more than the next-worst defense in New Mexico.

Kansas State: LB Arthur Brown. He has lived up to expectations — and then some — in his first season playing for the Wildcats. The one time highly sought recruit from Wichita began his career at Miami before transferring closer to home. After sitting out last season under NCAA rules, Brown has been on a tear from his spot in the middle of the Kansas State defense. He leads the team with 45 tackles.
Kansas: QB Jordan Webb. He has shown glimpses of being an elite quarterback, but he’s also had games like last week against Oklahoma, when he was 13 of 25 for 108 yards. With a defense that can’t stop anybody, the Jayhawks may need to simply outscore the Wildcats. Webb will be the key to it.

Kansas State is trying to start 7-0 for the first time since 1999. ... The Jayhawks had won three straight Sunflower Showdowns before losing 59-7 last year in Lawrence. Wildcats coach Bill Snyder is 15-4 in his career against Kansas. ... This will be the 101st consecutive meeting between the schools. The only series that are longer without interruption are Kansas-Nebraska (105), Minnesota-Wisconsin (104) and Clemson-South Carolina (102). ... Kansas coach Turner Gill is 13-6 against Kansas State, but 0-1 on the Kansas sidelines. He was 4-0 as a quarterback at Nebraska and 9-5 as an assistant coach for the Cornhuskers. ... The Jayhawks are playing a team ranked in the top 12 for the third straight week (Oklahoma, Oklahoma State). Four of their final six opponents are either ranked or receiving votes.
                                                                                                        — The Associated Press

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