No. 7 K-State tries to recover from disappointment

No. 7 K-State tries to recover from disappointment

MANHATTAN, Kan. (AP) It's hard for anybody to drop into Manhattan, Kan.

The home of seventh-ranked Kansas State is tucked in a quiet valley out in the Flint Hills, surrounded by tallgrass prairie. There's a few flights into the airport, but not many. Most of the people who live in the small college town are affiliated with the university in some way.

It's the perfect place to convalesce after a monumental disappointment.

The Wildcats were barreling toward the national championship game when they headed to Baylor last week, with a quarterback in Collin Klein who was leading the race for the Heisman Trophy.

It all came undone in 60 short minutes.

The Bears found a way to force the steady Klein into throwing three interceptions, more than he'd thrown all season. They shut down his running ability, along with backfield mate John Hubert, and then ripped apart a defense that had been among the best in the Big 12.

By the time the carnage had ended, the Bears were celebrating a 52-24 victory every bit as lopsided as the score, and the Wildcats were heading home to lick their wounds.

And with a week off before playing No. 18 Texas, there's a lot of time for licking.

``It's a double-edged sword,'' Kansas State coach Bill Snyder said. ``The time is needed from a rest standpoint for our players. Maybe it would have been better to have it a little sooner than this, but that is hindsight. The other side of the coin is you have to let this fester for that period of time. That can be good or bad. It depends on how they respond to it.''

Truth be told, the Wildcats still have plenty to play for.

They can ensure only their second Big 12 championship by beating the Longhorns in the finale Dec. 1, and also punch their ticket to a BCS bowl game, even if it's not the title game.

Even that's not entirely out of the picture.

The Wildcats (10-1, 7-1) will be big fans of USC, Florida State and Oregon State on Saturday. The Trojans need to beat No. 1 Notre Dame, the Seminoles have to top sixth-ranked Florida and the Beavers have to deal No. 5 Oregon its second straight defeat for Kansas State to have any chance of slipping back into the top two spots in the BCS standings.

That's a lot to ask, of course. The Wildcats know it.

But they also know that far stranger things have happened - like going to Waco, Texas, and getting pasted by a Baylor team whose only previous Big 12 win came against lowly Kansas.

``It was something that we knew we were going to have to face,'' Kansas State linebacker Arthur Brown said. ``The day after the loss was probably the worst, but we have to accept it.''

Snyder has certainly gone through this drill before.

The Wildcats were all-but-assured of a spot in the 1998 national championship game when they led in the fourth quarter against Texas A&M in the Big 12 title game. The Aggies rallied to tie the game, and Sirr Parker etched his name in history with the winning score in double overtime.

Kansas State retreated to its leafy Kansas in Manhattan to recover, but it never happened, especially after a quirk in the bowl system resulted in the Wildcats falling to the Alamo Bowl.

They wound up losing to Purdue and quarterback Drew Brees in a close game.

``I would say that we've gotten past the sad stage and more into the mad stage,'' tight end Travis Tannahill said. ``There is nothing you can do about it now.''

Even Snyder, who is always measured away from the sideline, admitted to feeling some anger.

``And I would have our players and coaches follow suit,'' he said.

``Heartbreaking does not even describe it, but at the same time, we just have to make sure that we do not let Baylor beat us twice,'' Klein said. ``We have to go back to what we know, and that is just trying to be the best we can be, contribute in helping each other and being a good teammate. We just cannot waste any days.''

The team was planning to practice Wednesday before breaking for Thanksgiving. Players will return to Manhattan in time for meetings on Sunday, and the preparation begins for Texas.

The Wildcats will know by then exactly what's at stake against the Longhorns.

``This is a special group. It's a group that has been through a lot through our time here,'' Klein said. ``It's a group that we truly care about each other in a pretty special way, as brothers would or family members would. We are still having fun, and that is important.''

Quick Links

Manny Machado trade rumors are dominating headlines at All-Star Game

USA Today Sports Images

Manny Machado trade rumors are dominating headlines at All-Star Game

Manny Machado could very well be playing in his final game in an Orioles uniform Tuesday night when he takes the field for the 89th Midsummer Classic at Nationals Park in Washington, D.C. 

The All-Star shortstop was mobbed by his locker taking questions from speculation that he will be headed out of Baltimore before the Orioles resume play Friday in Toronto.

Machado, 26, insisted he knew nothing about said speculation and made it clear that the rumors did not detract from his enjoyment of being an All-Star.

According to Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic, the Dodgers are now in the driver's seat as a favorite to land Machado. 

Machado is signed through the end of the season, but the Orioles intend to deal him before the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline.

For the latest news and conversation surrounding Machado's status and the Orioles, follow along on Twitter

Quick Links

All-Star Game Weather: Storms causing traffic havoc, could force delay, postponement

USA Today Sports

All-Star Game Weather: Storms causing traffic havoc, could force delay, postponement

There is inclement weather in the forecast for Tuesday evening both before and during the 2018 All-Star Game in Washington, D.C.

The rain could, theoretically, force the game to be delayed or even postponed, but the forecast shows the skies clearing up as first pitch nears.

Bad weather and MLB All-Star Games share a history in Washington.

The last time Washington hosted the MLB All-Star Game, in 1969, a bad rainstorm forced the game to be postponed from Tuesday night to Wednesday afternoon.

Even if the weather does let up and the game is able to start on time, there are sure to be problems with D.C.'s already-dense traffic. Roads are flooding and with more people on them than usual, getting to the game will surely be an issue.

All-Star Game Forecast

The worst of the weather seems to have already happened on Tuesday afternoon. The rest of the evening forecast calls for a slight chance of precipitation, with mostly cloudy skies and, naturally, a lot of humidity.

The issue, if there is any, would likely be with the All-Star Game getting started on time. That said, there's obviously still the chance for delays during the game.

Luckily, a full postponement seems unlikely at this point.

All-Star Game Traffic

There's hardly a worse place to drive in the United States during rush hour than in, around or through Washington. With the All-Star Game in town, there are already significantly more cars on the road than there usually are. Add rain and flooded roads into that equation and things get extra messy.

The George Washington Parkway, a main thoroughfare in the area, has already flooded.

One road in Alexandria, Virginia, is flooded and has cars scattered about.

Public transportation would seem to be the way to go, but even the Capitol South Metro Station in Southeast D.C. is flooding.

A brief history of weather and the All-Star Game

The first and only time the MLB All-Star Game was ever postponed because of rain was in 1969, the last time Washington was the host.

Three other times, the game has either been shortened or delayed because of rain, most recently in 1990 at Wrigley Field in Chicago. That game was delayed for over an hour but was still played.

All signs point to the game being played Tuesday night, but Nationals Park has definitely felt the wrath of this storm already.

On the bright side, if it's light enough when the game starts, there will probably be a rainbow somewhere in-view from the stadium, which should make for some pretty cool pictures for those in attendance.