Friday, October 26, 2012
Who will transform tomorrow: Week 9
By David Ubben
There might not be a position group in this league more underrated than Kansas State's defensive line.
The Wildcats lack the headline-makers at Texas or even TCU, but the Wildcats are second in the Big 12 with 17 sacks, led by Meshak Williams, with 5.5 sacks.
Williams, along with fellow end Adam Davis and defensive lineman Vai Lutui will transform this Saturday in Manhattan and provide a reminder that the Wildcats have a big-time defense along with Collin Klein, too.
A mediocre surrounding cast around Klein? I think not.
Davis has 3.5 sacks of his own and has forced three fumbles, and the Wildcats have been more dominant than any defense in the Big 12 in conference play. They've given up 19 fewer yards per game than any defense through four games, and lead the league in scoring defense, too.
Davis, Williams and Lutui are a huge reason why. More casual fans are familiar with Arthur Brown's efforts, but without the defensive line, offensive lines can get upfield and get a body on the Wildcats' cruise missile at the second level of the defense.
Instead, when Davis and Williams aren't getting to quarterbacks, they're getting a push and occupying linemen, leaving Brown free to roam and make plays at the line of scrimmage and fill gaps.
Only Oklahoma has been better at defending the pass this season in conference play, and the Sooners destroyed Texas Tech's passing game, forcing Red Raiders QB Seth Doege into three of his seven interceptions this season and holding him to a season-low 203 yards.
Doege leads the nation with 28 touchdown passes. He didn't get a single one against the Sooners. Kansas State might not shut him out, but they'll do plenty well enough to quiet the explosive Red Raiders offense and keep the K-State train rolling toward the BCS National Championship Game.