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Kansas State Defensive Preview: Fun 'D' Mentals

The "murderers row" of the Oklahoma State schedule continues as the Cowboys travel to the Little Apple. Don't expect the turf to be any greener in Manhattan.

Ryan Mueller leads a cast of Wildcats keen on stopping the run.
Ryan Mueller leads a cast of Wildcats keen on stopping the run.
Scott Sewell-USA TODAY Sports

What a year this has been.

A front-loaded schedule with cupcakes and home games were awfully misleading and now reality is setting in.

The Cowboys have a lot to learn, and no time to get it done.

Kansas State is a program that is always ahead of the learning curve. Even in a down year. This year for Bill Snyder and his players, has been far from a down year. The Wildcat defense, has been a brick wall at times.

Run defense is the specialty of the blue collar Wildcat defense.

The Wildcats have held opponents to only 3.2 yards a carry. The most yardage the Wildcats have allowed this season was against Oklahoma, who may have one of the best running games in the entire country. The Wildcats held National Runner-Up Auburn to a 2.84 yards per carry.

Auburn was seen last season as the nations top rushing team.

Not only are the Wildcats disallowing teams to get yardage, but they only gave up one rushing touchdown in the month of October.

Needless to say, the mediocre run blocking from Oklahoma State is going to be a weakness that the Wildcats will be licking its chops for. Don't expect Desmond Roland or Rennie Childs to be able to run up between the tackles with success Saturday.

If that weren't enough, the Cowboys haven't exactly been a team that jumps out early. The Cowboys this season usually take a couple of series to get any sort of successful offense moving but that won't play well against the Wildcats. The Wildcats defense improves as downs go by and as quarters pass.

Oklahoma State has ran the ball quite a bit on third down this season, the Wildcats are only allowing 1.67 yards per carry on third down. Those third and long, Tyreek Hill draw plays are only going to look worse this Saturday.

A player to watch from Kansas State on run defense is senior linebacker Jonathan Truman. Truman, the former walk-on has been a brick wall this season, recording almost 10 tackles a game. Truman is the poster child to this Wildcat defense. A little undersized, but will play big, fast and will outlast teams. Classic Bill Snyder defense.

Kansas State does have a weakness and that comes in the pass defense. The Wildcats can give up big plays in the air, so Daxx "Uncle Rico" Garman will hope to be able to throw a pigskin over the Wildcat secondary.

A positive for Garman, one that could allow him more opportunities to make plays, is that Kansas State is not a strong pass rush team. The offensive line at Oklahoma State has had plenty of woes this season, but this might be the game where they can at least hold ground and keep Garman off his back. The Wildcats record about a sack a game, which would be a nice change for Garman.

The Wildcats do average an interception a game. Which is less than what Garman has been capable of the last few games, but still shows that Garman can't chuck balls and hope for his receivers to come down with it.

Junior defensive back Morgan Burns leads the team with three interceptions.

Expect Garman to give at least one throw away, if not two Saturday, but the passing game is where the offense has any chance of putting points on the board.

It could be a long night come game time Saturday in Manhattan, the Cowboys offense has continually showed its ineptitude this season and the Wildcats will highlight even more, for they are as good of a unit as Oklahoma State has seen this season.

Final Score: Kansas State 24-7 over the Cowboys.