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October 8, 2012

Snyder back to work

MANHATTAN, Kan. — The average person wouldn’t be overjoyed to awake on a Sunday morning, on their birthday no less, and head to the office to get started on another grueling work week.

Bill Snyder is not, by any stretch, an average person.

He’s the guy who eats once a day, so precious is his time. The guy who built Kansas State into a national powerhouse from almost nothing. The guy who turned 73 on Sunday, one day after beating rival Kansas 56-16 to remain undefeated, and had very clear plans on celebrating his birthday.

“I’ll be right over there,” he said, pointing his finger as his office.

The sixth-ranked Wildcats wouldn’t be where they are without Snyder’s tireless work ethic, barreling through another season that is rapidly turning into one of the best in school history.

They’ve already beaten Oklahoma on the road. Knocked off Miami. Dominated their in-state rival for the fourth consecutive year, and head to Iowa State next week with enough momentum and confidence that outside observers are already peering ahead to the next week, when they’ll face No. 5 West Virginia in a game that could ultimately decide the Big 12 championship.

Oh, you can bet Snyder won’t be looking that far down the road.

Chances are he breezed into his office bright and early Sunday, ever-present cup of coffee in hand, and got ready for a self-critique. He popped in the tape of Saturday’s game against Kansas, settled into his chair with remote control in hand, and pored over the Sunflower Showdown.

Which turned into another Sunflower Beatdown by the time it was over.

The Wildcats (5-0, 2-0 Big 12) led just 21-14 at halftime after the Jayhawks pulled off an audacious faked field and faked punt, held the ball for all but 8 1/2 minutes, and made a goal-line stand as time was running out to send themselves into the break on a high.

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