This week's edition of Crossfire welcomes TB from the most excellent Kansas State blog Bring On The Cats over to RMN. He agreed to a Q&A on the understanding that there might be an "overdose of doom and gloom." All of the sudden, a three-point win over Baylor looks a lot brighter, doesn't it Mizzou fans?
RMN: You gave BOTC readers a "state of the nation" in your "This is the End" post. Is this the lowest you've seen KSU football since before the Snyder renaissance?
BOTC: That was only the mini version of the State of the Program. Look for a long, detailed discussion of our situation in the Midweek QB.
In all fairness, I can't speak to whether this is the lowest we've felt since the Snyder Renaissance, because I only came to K-State toward the end of the Snyder's reign. In time for the Big 12 title, but also in time for the disappointing final years. Others could answer that more accurately, but I can't imagine we've ever felt any worse. Not only we looking worse than we have since 1988, we are regressing in every area of the game. We make the same mistakes on defense every single game. We see the same terrible playcalling every single game. Even in 2004 and 2005, we had a competent defense. In the early Snyder years, there were some bad records, but there was progress every single season. Now, we're facing concern that our program could be crippled for a long period of time if Prince is retained beyond this season.
RMN: You've said that KSU can't allow another season like this one. We know you want Prince out before 2009, but is there any hint from administration about his future in Manhattan?
BOTC: The K-State administrators, namely University President Jon Wefald and Athletic Director Bob Krause, have been mostly mum on the issue. About a month ago, Krause basically said there was no doubt Prince would be back for another season. We also heard after the Texas Tech debacle that he didn't notice the 25,000 fans that disappeared at halftime and never returned. There is very real concern among K-State fans that Krause and Wefald (Ed. note: Wee-fald? Weff-ald?) are going to stick with Prince because he is their guy. I am really hoping to hear soon that they understand how much regression this program has shown, and how fed up the fans are.
RMN: Two weeks ago, Kansas State was able to put up a fight with Oklahoma early, but, since being tied with OU at 28, the Wildcats have been outscored 82-28. What exactly fell apart?
BOTC: The comeback against Oklahoma was a lightning in a bottle kind of thing. Oklahoma has some defensive deficiencies, but what happened was mostly that OU woke up and realized it could run the ball straight at us and we couldn't stop them. KU picked up on that message and did the same thing. Every team that we play from here on out will run the ball right at us, because we simply cannot stop a decently blocked running play.
More questions after the jump
RMN: Has poor playcalling and a poor defense taken the focus away from an offense that often gets overlooked despite threats like Brandon Banks and Deon Murphy?
BOTC: I don't doubt that we have some talented players on offense, chiefly Josh Freeman, Brandon Banks, Aubrey Quarles and Deon Murphy. But, exactly as you said, the playcalling makes it impossible for them to succeed. If I had the stomach, I'd go back and give you a count of how many times we've called a play-action pass this season without once handing the ball off previously in that game. If I had the stomach, I'd go back and tell you how many times we've thrown a low-percentage pass on first down, putting us behind schedule. Simple talent will not overcome a scheme that does not work, and there is absolutely no rhyme or reason to our playcalling these days. The next game plan I see will be the first.
RMN: Give us an update on the saga that is Josh Freeman's development.
BOTC: Development? Surely you jest. His numbers have improved each year almost purely based on the fact that he is a physical phenomenon, or a golden god man-mountain in Panjandrum's parlance. He has gotten better because he learned the playbook and the game slowed down for him. This coaching staff has done almost nothing to develop his biggest deficiencies in the last 2+ years. We still see poor footwork under pressure. We still see poor decisions. He still throws into coverage just because there's a two percent chance he can squeeze the ball into that slot. I think he'll be a good player in the NFL, because he'll actually get good coaching there. He hasn't had it at K-State.
RMN: Exactly how concerned are you with K-State matching up with Mizzou? What do you expect to see from Kansas State strategically this weekend?
BOTC: Apathy has taken over my despair, so I don't really care about Mizzou anymore. You guys are going to win, and you're going to win by a lot. We are 108th in the country in total defense right now. Chase Daniel eats pieces of shit like us for breakfast. Jeremy Maclin is going to find more open space in our secondary than the average Alaskan has. Chase Coffman is going to thrust the nunchuk upward, repeatedly. You remember how badly you beat Colorado, right? We are worse than Colorado, and we're playing you on the day you honor what is undoubtedly the greatest senior class in Missouri football history. Small Pacific island, meet tsunami.
RMN: Finish the following statements:
-- Mizzou will win if: they don't put the co-ed intramural football champions out on the field.
-- Kansas State will win if: each and every Mizzou players gets lost on the way to the stadium and Washington officials kidnap Gary Pinkel and hold him for ransom.
RMN: Give us a prediction.
BOTC: If Pinkel calls off the dogs, I'll go with 56-17. If he decides he wants to set some records, all bets are off. Seriously, he can name his score. If he wakes up Saturday morning and thinks, "Hmm, I want to score 80 points today," his team will be able to do it.