MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — In the waning minutes of Saturday’s second quarter, Kansas State tight end Briley Moore suffered an injury moments after making a 9-yard reception. He remained down on the field for an extended period while being tended to by team trainers.
Moore eventually got up and was able to walk to the Wildcats’ sideline without assistance.
He did not return in the second half, however.
Following the team’s 37-10 loss to West Virginia, K-State head coach Chris Klieman revealed that the Wildcats wanted to play it safe with Moore’s injury.
“It was a back injury,” Klieman said. “I don’t know the severity of it. It kind of locked up on him when he got speared from behind in the back. It just locked up on him, from what I understand, and they couldn’t get it loose. So we weren’t going to take any chances.”
At the time of his injury Saturday, Moore had two receptions for 38 yards. He entered the game as K-State’s leader in receptions (17) and touchdown catches (three) while ranking third in receiving yards (234), behind running back Deuce Vaughn (360) and wide receiver Chabastin Taylor (237).
In a game where the Wildcats already were pressed for offense — they ended with only 225 total yards, their lowest total of the season by a sizable margin (they had 289 in a win at TCU on Oct. 10) — losing a piece as large as Moore, Klieman conceded, made the situation even more difficult.
But it wasn’t a death knell, either — largely because of the Mountaineers.
“It was a factor, because I think Briley is an All-Big 12 player,” Klieman said of the offense’s struggles Saturday. “But we didn’t get enough stops on defense that (even if Moore returned), it probably wasn’t going to matter. We would have liked to have had Briley back for the second half. Shoot, that affected a little part of our offense, but totality is what our problem was. In all phases, we just needed to be better.”
Injured DB Parker doesn’t make trip
Senior defensive back AJ Parker didn’t travel with the Wildcats for Saturday’s game. Parker, who injured his ankle in the second quarter of last week’s win over Kansas, was day-to-day all week. When K-State departed Manhattan on Friday, Parker stayed behind.
With Parker unavailable, Will Jones stepped in at nickelback. He notched four tackles (three solo, one assisted) in Saturday’s loss.
Parker began the season at cornerback and shifted to nickelback during K-State’s first open date. He moved to the spot beginning with the Wildcats’ come-from-behind win at Oklahoma last month, and remained there in the subsequent three games (Texas Tech, TCU and KU).
Though he sat out Saturday, Klieman said earlier this week the team felt “pretty good that it’s not going to be a long-term injury.”
Ironically, Parker suffered an ankle injury against KU in 2019. That turned out to be far more serious, though, as he missed the rest of the season after undergoing surgery to repair a fracture.