Monday, August 31, 2015



Steady Snyder rubbing off on players



Bill Snyder’s range of emotions oftentimes seem as vanilla as his Week 1 play calling.

Sure, when he wins he’s generally pleased with the way his team plays, and when they lose he gets upset, much like any coach would.

But Snyder is different.

He’s always focused on the future, making sure consistency, arguably K-State’s best attribute so far this season, remains at the forefront. Part of that equation is to not get too high or too low, regardless of the level of achievement his team reaches.

Needless to say, beating then-No. 6 Oklahoma in Norman last week, something K-State hadn’t done in a very long time, didn’t produce a strong positive or negative reaction from the 72-year-old coach.

Much like the rest of Snyder’s rhetoric on football success, his players are picking up on the steady attitude.

On Tuesday, before the team had a chance to practice following the Oklahoma win, Snyder said he expected the team would come back to work with the same attitude he’s seen all year.

“I think they’re responding reasonably well,” he said. “I know that there was some enthusiasm — some excitement about the ballgame, and they deserved that. But we’ll find out. We had meetings and they were attentive. We’ll see when we get on the practice field.

“But I think they’ll go back to work. They know what they’ve accomplished, and yet they know all that lies ahead. This early in the season, there’s still so much more ahead of them.”

It’s true that college football is a long season, and nothing accomplished in Week 4 will matter in December unless you take care of business and keep your head on straight, but most coaches would celebrate a road victory over a top-10 team, even if just for a day.

Yet, in 21 seasons we’ve never seen Snyder high-stepping down the sideline after a big play. Media doesn’t have access to the locker rooms, but it’s hard to imagine Snyder giving a Paul Rhoads-esque postgame speech before jumping around in wild celebration after a milestone win.

“He is so consistent in everything,” quarterback Collin Klein said. “Our practices are exactly the same, our travel schedules are exactly the same. Consequences for not doing certain things are exactly the same.”

It’s important to note Snyder isn’t trying to take away the accomplishments of his team, or restrict them from celebrating the top-10 ranking this program hasn’t seen in nearly a decade. He’s just not interested in doing much celebrating, and that trait is rubbing off.

“They accomplished something that was recognized nationally, that’s a positive thing and I certainly wouldn’t attempt to take that away from them,” Snyder said. “I think the important thing — the obvious thing — is let’s get on with the task at hand and take it a day at a time and let someone else worry about who’s where in the rankings and the significance of the rankings.

“I think we have enough maturity on this football team to be able to handle that.”

Linebacker Arthur Brown has been around Snyder enough to know how much his attitude rubs off on his players.

“Coach definitely doesn’t want us too high or too low,” Brown said. “He tells us not to take advantage of anyone and don’t underestimate anyone as well. His attitude has an impact on our attitude.”

Most coaches have enough sense to not put too much stock in high rankings or upset victories, but oftentimes players don’t make that connection. Klein clearly sees the bigger picture.

“It’s an honor,” Klein said. “We appreciate it, no question about it. But at the same time, rankings don’t mean a thing until the end.”

Sound like a broken record? That’s just how Snyder likes it.

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