MANHATTAN, Kan. (AP) -- Bill Snyder stood at the podium with a
smile and a confession.
"If there was any good coaching today," he said, "it wasn't
by me. The assistants did a great job. ... I was just there."
Snyder joked and choked up by turns, at one point stopping to
say, "OK, now I'm just rambling," after Kansas State's 36-28
victory over Missouri on Saturday, his last game as the Wildcats'
He announced his retirement Tuesday, after 17 seasons in
"I'm spent," said Snyder, who took over the nation's only
500-loss team in 1989 and led the Wildcats to a 136-68-1 record and
a place among the nation's top programs before their fortunes fell
off in his final two seasons. "It's been a far different week than
I had anticipated. It's been a hard week and a very emotional
Saturday's game fit right in then, with the Wildcats trailing by
two touchdowns midway through the third quarter before rallying to
And afterward, following Snyder's emotional speech to the crowd
of 46,039, his players hoisted him to their shoulders and carried
him to the locker room.
"He kept telling me to put him down," offensive tackle Jeromey
Clary said, "but I told him there was no way I was letting him
down: 'I've been in this program for four years, and I'm carrying
you to the top of the hill."
Kansas State (5-6, 2-6 Big 12) broke a five-game losing streak.
It has not lost to the Tigers since 1992.
Thomas Clayton ran for 102 yards for the Wildcats, and Allen
Webb came off the bench to run for 91 yards and throw for 93 more
and a go-ahead touchdown to Jordy Nelson midway through the fourth
The Wildcats also scored touchdowns on defense (Brandon Archer's
45-yard interception return) and special teams (Marcus Perry's
32-yard return of a blocked punt).
Missouri (6-5, 4-4) saw its slim chance to win the Big 12 North
slip away at the newly renamed Bill Snyder Family Stadium. The name
was changed Wednesday, a day after Snyder announced his retirement.
"This one leaves a nasty taste in my mouth. I'm still in
shock," said Missouri wide receiver Brad Ekwerekwu, whose 19-yard
touchdown catch from Brad Smith put the Tigers up 28-14 with just
over 10 minutes left in the third quarter. "I don't know what to
think of it. We were out there playing, and one event led to
Smith threw for 248 yards and three touchdowns and ran for 71
yards and another score for the Tigers, but negated his big game
with a costly mistake that helped Kansas State clinch the victory.
With just over 1½ minutes to go, and the Wildcats clinging to a
29-28 lead, Smith threw directly to Kansas State linebacker Brandon
Archer, who returned the ball 45 yards for a touchdown.
"He was probably just trying to get rid of the football, and he
got hit again," Missouri coach Gary Pinkel said. "That's just a
judgment thing, but Brad did some good things for us today."
Kansas State mounted its comeback behind Webb, who lost his
starting job in early October but replaced an ineffective Allan
Evridge in the second half.
"People were in the locker room, and there were a couple of
players saying, 'Just shut up and let's just play," Webb said.
"And that's exactly right. There were too many people talking. If
you're going to talk, then you have to go out there and produce."
Victor Mann ran for a 23-yard score midway through the third to
get the Wildcats within 28-21, and they appeared ready to tie the
game when Webb's 19-yard gain gave them first-and-goal on the 1
early in the fourth quarter.
Kansas State couldn't punch the ball in, though, and Webb's
third-down fumble was recovered by Missouri's Dedrick Herrington at
the 3. But on the Tigers' first snap, defensive tackle Steven Kline
tackled Tony Temple in the end zone for a safety that made it
After the ensuing free kick, Kansas State drove downfield but
faced fourth-and-5 at the Missouri 10. Nelson, running a crossing
pattern, snagged Webb's pass at the 2 and cut in for a 29-28 lead.
Mann's 2-point conversion run failed, and Missouri was still
within one when the Tigers took over at their own 19 with 2:08
left. Three plays later, under heavy defensive pressure, Smith
flipped the ball straight to Kansas State's Archer in the left
"It was unbelievable," Archer said. "I couldn't even believe
Missouri could have tied the game with a touchdown and a 2-point
conversion, but Smith's fourth-down pass to William Franklin fell
incomplete with 52 seconds left.
After Smith's first touchdown throw, Kansas State went up 14-7
later in the first on Carlos Alsup's 2-yard run and Perry's blocked