Kansas State was beat up and getting beaten through the air consistently. Collin Klein was on the sidelines, and one big play was waiting to change the momentum in Bill Snyder Family Stadium on Saturday night.
Wildcats defensive back Allen Chapman wasn't having it, and made it clear that he'd be making the only big plays that would change the game on this night.
Before Klein's injury, Chapman stepped in front of an ill-advised Wes Lunt throw for his first interception of the night, returning it 29 yards for a touchdown and a 31-17 halftime lead that gave the Wildcats some breathing room.
He played thief early in the second half with his second pick along the sideline on another poor Lunt decision, but his final interception satisfied a nervous crowd in The Little Apple that's had its heart broken one too many times.
K-State's offense had done little to nothing in the second half and the Wildcats had been outgained, but Chapman picked off Clint Chelf in the end zone to seal the win and get K-State one step closer to the glory that eluded the program in 1998.
For his efforts, he's the first defensive player all season to win the player of the week honors in the Big 12.
Only seven Big 12 players have had three interceptions all season long. Chapman did it in one night, and broke up two more passes for good measure.
K-State needed its special teams and defense to step up on a night when the offense wasn't itself in the second half. Chapman produced seven points in the first half when Klein was still playing, and prevented seven more late when Klein wasn't.
Those are the kinds of plays that win you games, and Chapman deserves recognition.
The senior juco transfer is often overshadowed by his teammate, Nigel Malone, at the position, but on this night the spotlight shone on Chapman. He delivered quite the performance. Between Malone and OSU corners Justin Gilbert and Brodrick Brown, there was a lot of NFL talent at the position on the field on Saturday night.
Chapman was better than all of them. Nobody's more deserving of the award this week.