By Laura Leigh Majernik @LLMajer
Houston’s NRG Stadium provided the perfect setting for an incredible Big 12-SEC contest in the Texas Bowl. Both teams were evenly matched coming into the game, but in the end, Kansas State claimed victory over Texas A&M with a final score of 33-28.
Kansas State QB Jesse Ertz led the Wildcats’ offense with such skill that he was named the game’s Most Valuable Player. His first play from scrimmage was a 79-yard touchdown pass to Byron Pringle. Not only did the Wildcats get on the board, but the 11 second play was the shortest scoring drive in Texas Bowl history.
Ertz was just getting warmed up with that drive. He ended the night with 195 passing yards and 67 rushing yards, resulting in 3 Wildcat touchdowns.
I expected to give my readers a long list of defensive stats from Texas A&M DE Myles Garrett. However, the K-State offensive line managed to contain Garrett to 1 tackle in the game. In post-game interviews, K-State Head Coach Bill Snyder, an exemplar of sportsmanship, stated that Scott Frantz, who lined up against Garrett, “…played well against him. Probably as well as anybody that’s played against him during the course of the year.” Of Garrett, Snyder kindly stated, “He’s a legitimate first team All-American and extremely high draft choice.”
It was not Garrett’s best night, however, his skill, as Snyder mentioned, still keeps him in the discussion as a top draft choice.
Texas A&M RB Keith Ford led the Aggies’ rushing corps with 10 carries for 86 yards and 1 touchdown. Quarterback Trevor Knight had a shaky start to the evening but ended with 310 passing yards, 3 touchdowns and 1 interception. Defensive standouts for the Aggies included LBs Shaan Washington and Otaro Alaka.
Kansas State saw impressive play from RB Justin Silmon, who rushed for 77 yards in 10 carries. Defensive standouts included LBs Elijah Lee and D.J. Reed, with 12 and 9 total tackles, respectively.
All quotes provided from post-game press conference notes from LSSE PR-Houston Texans.
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