Key play: Jacob Branstetter pushed right a 30-yard field goal to squander KU's opening possession set up by Darrell Stuckey's 67-yard kickoff return to open the game.
Key stat: Minus-5. Kansas rushing yards for the quarter. The Jayhawks couldn't get the running game going, keeping their offense one-dimensional.
Key play: Kansas escaped Todd Reesing's first fumble in K-State territory when the Wildcats missed a field goal. But the Jayhawks paid for the second one, when Grant Gregory tossed a touchdown pass just before halftime.
Key stat: Minus-3. Turnover margin. By halftime, the Jayhawks had committed three turnovers to the Wildcats' none.
Key play: A holding penalty on center Jeremiah Hatch on first down once Kansas reached the K-State 20. The flag stalled the Jayhawks' drive.
Key stat: 0 for 2, Branstetter on field goals with his miss through the third quarter.
Key play: Kansas State had a third-and-4 from the Kansas 43 late in the game. A stop, and the Jayhawks likely would regain possession down seven. But Gregory squirted away for an 8-yard gain to seal the outcome.
Key stat: One. Kansas had the ball for one possession in the fourth quarter.
KU Report Card
Offense: D. The turnover problems persist. Three turnovers, all by Reesing, turned the game toward the Wildcats. The Jayhawks moved to 0-4 on the season when they don't rush for 100 yards as team.
Defense: B. Daniel Thomas had a big day, but nobody else. Still, after Kansas pulled to 17-10 it asked its defense for one stop. It didn't happen. Twice on third-down snaps, Grant Gregory ran for first downs.
Special teams: C. The good and bad in a matter of moments. Darrell Stuckey got things off to a rousing start with a 67-yard kickoff return, but when the drive stalled kicker Jacob Branstetter missed a 30-yard field goal. A second shank came in the third quarter. Branstetter later made a long field goal to pull Kansas within a score and his pop up boots on kickoffs prevented return specialist Brandon Banks from having his usual big day.
Coaching: C. Kansas shuffled its offensive line with mixed results. Reesing was better protected but the running game never got going. After the first-half turnovers, the playing-calling got understandably conservative in the second half. No mistakes for Kansas but the Jayhawks came up with only a field goal for the effort.
Reason to hope
The season's not over. A home game against Nebraska and the Arrowhead contest against Missouri are winnable games (Texas isn't), and how good would seven victories look to the Jayhawks now?
Reason to mope
Kansas players said this had been a positive and productive week of practice. How bad would it had been if this had been a lousy week on the practice fields?
KU returns home to face Nebraska at 2:30 p.m. The Jayhawks have defeated the Cornhuskers in their last two meetings in Lawrence by a combined score of 116-54.