Wildcats Hoping To Repeat Upset Of No. 7 Texas
Wednesday, September 26th 2007, 3:51 pm
By: News On 6
MANHATTAN, Kan. (AP) _ Kansas State linebacker Ian Campbell isn't making any guarantees about the Wildcats' upcoming game against No. 7 Texas.
He even went so far this week as to say that Kansas State's upset of the Longhorns last season would have almost no effect when the two teams meet Saturday in Austin, Texas. And Campbell laughed when asked if he agreed with fans' sentiments that the Wildcats might ``own Texas.''
``I think those ownerships are up for year leases, because you've got to play everybody every year,'' he said. ``So I don't think you can just say that you own anybody.''
Campbell played a key role in the Wildcats' 45-42 win a year ago, recovering two second-half fumbles that were turned into touchdowns. That victory gave Kansas State a 3-2 record against Texas since Big 12 Conference play began in 1996, meaning the Wildcats have the highest winning percentage of any conference school against the Big 12 South powerhouse. Oklahoma is the only other team with a winning record at 6-5.
The 2006 loss was particularly stinging to the Longhorns, who were hoping for a shot at a repeat national championship, but instead had to watch thousands of purple-clad fans rush the field in celebration.
It ended Texas' 21-game conference winning streak and was its first regular-season loss to a Big 12 North school in seven years.
But, Campbell said, that happened a year ago. Now he's focused on this year.
``Last year was last year, and it's over with,'' Campbell said. ``I'm sure they'll play with plenty of pride. If they feel like we took away their national championship last year, they're going to be playing with plenty of pride on Saturday.''
Kansas State (2-1) has had two full weeks to prepare for Texas (4-0). After routing Missouri State 61-10 on Sept. 14, the Wildcats had a bye week before beginning the conference slate.
The weeks off may have helped. An injury-depleted secondary was given a chance to recover. Cornerbacks Bryan Baldwin and Ray Cheatham are both healthy again after sitting out the Missouri State game.
``We are a better team than we were this time last week because we have a few more players available at some critical positions,'' coach Ron Prince said. ``Being up to full strength on defense will help us.''
Prince said he wasn't offended that his Wildcats are the overwhelming underdogs again this season.
``I think we'll be the underdog in most games,'' he said. ``At least that's our mind-set. We kind of feel like that is going to be the case for a while.''
For defensive tackle Steven Cline, he looks at Saturday's game as another opportunity _ just like last year.
``We beat them (last year), and they probably had their guard down,'' Cline said. ``It just goes to show that anybody can beat anybody. We've done it, and we can do it again.''