Kansas State University

Kansas State 55, Charlotte 7: key moments, players and grades

Bill Snyder talks about win over Charlotte

K-State head Coach Bill Snyder talks about the Wildcats domination of the Charlotte 49ers Saturday afternoon in Manhattan.
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K-State head Coach Bill Snyder talks about the Wildcats domination of the Charlotte 49ers Saturday afternoon in Manhattan.

K-State player of the game: Kendall Adams. The junior defensive back had the two biggest plays of the afternoon. First, he effortlessly jumped a Charlotte route for an interception and returned the ball 30 yards for a touchdown. Then he scooped up an errant lateral and took it 46 yards for a touchdown. Scoring two defensive touchdowns in the same game is both rare and impressive.

Charlotte player of the game: Aaron McCallister. His 66-yard kickoff return in the first quarter gave the 49ers excellent field position, which they turned into a touchdown. If not for his big play, Charlotte likely would have been held scoreless.

Key moment of the game: Adams completely deflated the Charlotte sideline when he scored on a 46-yard fumble return. The 49ers were moving the ball at midfield, down just 24-7, before the turnover. Confidence was building. But that changed once Adams made it 31-7. Charlotte looked deflated.

Grades

Offense: A. The Wildcats could have done more, particularly in the passing game, but 493 yards is good production. The running game excelled against Charlotte. Five different K-State runners (Alex Barnes, Jesse Ertz, Dalvin Warmack, Mike McCoy and Winston Dimel) ran for touchdowns. The team finished with 304 yards on the ground, a nice improvement from last week.

Defense: A+. K-State limited Charlotte to a single offensive highlight, a leaping touchdown run from quarterback Hasaan Klugh. The 49ers did little otherwise, amassing just 168 yards. K-State forced three turnovers and scored touchdowns off two of them. It’s hard to ask for more.

Special Teams: C. Bill Snyder said K-State took a step back on special teams, and it’s hard to disagree. Charlotte took return specialists D.J. Reed and Dominique Heath out of the game with touchbacks and line-drive punts. And K-State’s kickoff coverage could have been better.

Coaching: B+: Credit K-State coaches for having the Wildcats ready to go from the start, but they left the starters in a little long. This game was over at halftime.

Kellis Robinett: @kellisrobinett

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