Can Chris Klieman and the Kansas State football team surpass expectations in 2021?
As the Kansas State Wildcats get geared up for their third season with Chris Klieman as their head coach, what sort of expectations would be realistic for 2021? Well, if you take a look at ESPN’s Bill Connelly’s SP+ preseason rankings, you might not expect a great year for the Kansas State football team.
That’s because Kansas State comes in at the middle of the pack nationally in the SP+ preseason rankings.
It’s hardly a great spot to be in.
Overall, Kansas State football is ranked at No. 61, according to SP+ preseason rankings. Interestingly enough, in those rankings, Kansas State’s offense ranks at No. 52 while the Wildcats’ defense sits at No. 76.
Kansas State football: Where are the Wildcats in Bill Connelly’s SP+ preseason rankings?
So, looking ahead at this season, Klieman and company have plenty of work to do this year. 2020 featured a few ups and downs for the Wildcats. It’s also worth considering that the Kansas State football program has the most talented roster in the Big 12.
Because of that, the Kansas State job is one that requires a lot of player development and coaching creativity. Klieman was hired because he’s got a history of winning and is the sort of guy who can win in Manhattan.
K-State prides itself on being a bit of an underdog and overcoming adversity and there’s a chance they’ll have to do that again this year.
The Wildcats will face a tough schedule and an uphill battle, but there are plenty of winnable games for K-State this season. If Klieman and the Wildcats can get wins over other midtier Big 12 teams, such as TCU, West Virginia, and the like, then this year could be a solid one.
Of course, getting a win against Stanford to start the season would help a lot too.
To learn more about Connelly’s SP+ 2021 preseason rankings and the interesting and fun math that goes into it, click here.