A while ago, one of the six people that read this column called me at the office and wanted to know why I called Kansas State coach Bill Snyder a "gutless wonder."
I told him the remark was based on the Wildcats' annual schedule (the Warren Commission couldn't find more patsies than K-State does each fall) and that Snyder had never won a Big 12 championship or beaten a top flight team.
I don't remember the entire conversation but I think I used Oklahoma head coach Bob Stoops as a barometer in judging Snyder. I also told the reader (judging by his anger during the phone call, the guy must bleed purple) that if the Wildcats ever proved me wrong, I'd give them their due praise.
Following K-State's red headed step-child beating of Oklahoma on Saturday night, I'm here to pay up (it stings unbelievably).
Today, I stand before God and country to say something I never thought I would.
The Kansas State Wildcats are one of the top five teams in the country. (I was going to write top three but I'll reserve that until after K-State plays Ohio State in the Fiesta Bowl.)
I'll also say this, if there was a playoff system for the national championship, K-State would be among the most feared teams. You'd have to like their chances to do some damage in a tournament format.
So there it is, K-State fans. I've eaten my crow, and if the Wildcats beat the defending champion Buckeyes on Jan. 1, I'll take down another serving.
- Let me get this right. USC is ranked No. 1 in both polls but won't play in the national championship game. Oklahoma didn't win its conference championship and got spanked by K-State but will play LSU for the whole enchilada.
For the second time in four years a team that didn't win its own conference will play for the national championship (Nebraska, 2001). Yeah, the BCS works.
- The bowl matchups suck. Outside of the farce of a national championship game, the Miami-Florida State matchup stinks, as does K-State-Ohio State.
My revised bowl games look like this: USC v. LSU (Sugar), Oklahoma v. Michigan (Rose), K-State v. Florida State (Fiesta) and Miami v. Ohio State (Orange).
These games would provide a true national championship, a good game between the Sooners and Wolverines and two other interesting bowl games. Who wouldn't want to see a Miami-Ohio State rematch after one of the greatest games of all time last year? And how engaging would a Wildcat-Seminole game be?
- The Orange Bowl should be renamed the No One Should Care Bowl. (This is coming from a die- hard Miami fan and nope, even I don't care about this game.)
The Hurricanes and Seminoles have already played this year (Miami beat Florida State in Tallahassee) and both teams will open next season against each other as well. Fans see this game every year and while they are typically thrilling, playing another one just for the sake of a paycheck is redundant.
- Forget any place you've ever watched a K-State game, because the best atmosphere for any Wildcat activity is the home of George and Cindy Smith. I watched the game there Saturday night with their son, Dan. That family loves K-State almost as much as a wiry terrier puppy named Roco. Plus Cindy Smith makes a darn fine steak dinner. It tastes a lot better than crow.
I'm still full.