Kansas State held the ball for 20:55 of the 2013 Fiesta Bowl's first 30 minutes. The Wildcats also trail, 22-10. That's with Oregon's offense doing its oft-traditional first half thing, which sees Chip Kelly probing his opponent for deficiencies before releasing the herd of wildebeests at the half. The Ducks have a scant 158 yards worth of offense to Kansas State's 170.
A game-opening, 94-yard touchdown run by De'Anthony Thomas will have that effect, as will Marcus Mariota snapping out of it on a final-minute drive to flip a wheel route score to Kenjon Barner. Mariota's only six of 12 for 106 through the air -- this is likely to improve in such a hurry that we all forget it ever happened.
This is all based on Oregon's tendencies, of course. Kansas State still has something to say, and if not for a missed field goal and that kick runback, the game would be just about knotted up. Feels strange to blame K-State's special teams, which has been the toast of the country to this point.
If any team can pull out a win despite staring into the very worst possible deficit, a halftime hole against Oregon, it's Bill Snyder's Cats, but time is of the essence. Kelly, at the break, told ESPN Oregon needs to get faster in the second. How many more gears do you have, State?
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