K-State football adjusting to offensive staff changes, spending time with local kids ahead of bowl game

Kansas State Wildcats

HOUSTON, TX. (KSNT)- Kansas State football is gearing up for their final game of the season against LSU on Tuesday, Jan. 4 in the Texas Bowl.

The Wildcats offense will be under new management. Offensive coordinator Courtney Messingham was let go after the last game of the regular season. Former K-State star quarterback Collin Klein is serving as the interim OC. Skylar Thompson, who had already been working with Klein in his role as quarterbacks coach, is enjoying it.

“He’s been amazing,” Thompson said. “I’ve always felt like him and I are just on the same page. I know what he’s thinking before he’s thinking it and he knows what I think before I’m thinking it. I’m very excited to go play for him.”

The bond between Thompson and Klein is clearly a special one. When the interim OC was asked what Thompson means to him, he smiled and joked that there wasn’t enough time for him to answer.

“He’s a phenomenal young man. His maturity, his toughness, his consistency, working with him every day… he’s impacted me as much as I hope I’ve impacted him,” Klein said. “He’s a special one.”

Klein says he isn’t worrying about whether or not he will take over as offensive coordinator long term right now. Instead, he’s solely focused on their next and final game.

“I’m not worried about that right now. I want to finish, I want to play as good a game as we possibly can, as clean a game as we possibly can,” Klein said. “Whatever happens from there, it’s in the Lord’s hands, and whatever happens happens. It’s about K-State and what’s best for K-State and finishing this thing right.”

The team held a field day with local kids from DePelchin Children’s Center after practice Sunday afternoon. Kids from the area joined the K-State football players for drills including 40-yard dash, tackling dummies, and route running.

“It’s great. I love the community service our guys are doing. These guys have given back to their hometown communities, they’ve given back to Manhattan, and to be able to hang out with these young kids, it’s fun to see all those kids with smiles on their faces having fun and our guys being engaged and really getting to know the kids,” head coach Chris Klieman said.

“It was a fun experience. I met Felix [Anudike Uzomah], the defensive end and I got Daniel [Imatorbhebhe], the tight end to sign my bandana,” one local athlete said.

K-State will hold a pep rally in Houston on Monday. The Texas Bowl kicks off at 8 p.m. Central Time on Tuesday night.

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