It's certainly no secret what Bill Snyder has and is currently doing at Kansas State. Simply put, the man is an outstanding football coach who was born to do exactly what he's doing. His teams are disciplined and as assignment sound as any you'll watch this or any other season. The KSU team our Sooners will face Saturday afternoon will be no different. While some (many?) will label them overachievers, what they would be missing is a collection of players executing almost to perfection what their coaches ask of them. Snyder and his staff know what these players are capable of and know what they do well. As such, they will develop a game plan they believe to be effective about what OU plans to do and go out and execute it. Now that's not to say they're not capable of making adjustments, but if it's working (like it has been all year so far) don't expect them to try and reinvent the wheel.
So to that point, the first thing we as OU fans can expect to see it plenty of the KSU run game. It's predominantly how they move the ball, both with Collin Klein at QB and John Hubert at RB. They're not unwilling or unable to pass the ball mind you, but their clear preference so far has been to move the ball on the ground. Hubert certainly isn't the biggest or fastest back in the Big 12, but he is a football player who just makes plays. However, Klein is the straw that stirs this Wildcat offense and he'll have the ball in his hands for a majority of plays on Saturday. At least that is if everything is working for this K-State offense. What they'll try to do it use both Klein and Hubert to run the ball, wearing down the OU defense and setting up the play action. If they have a shot over the top they'll definitely take it and the two most likely targets are Tramaine Thompson and Tyler Lockett.
On defense for the Wildcats, the "star" is LB Arthur Brown but much like a typical Snyder team this is a unit in every sense of the word. They compliment each other incredibly well and while the strength is likely in the front seven, don't sleep on this secondary. They have struggled at times against the pass, but they have also faced some pretty dynamic passing offenses (Baylor, Texas Tech) and Oklahoma fans are all to familiar with how a QB in rhythym can pick apart your secondary. Expect the KSU defense to try and shut down the Sooners run game early to try and make the one dimensional. They'll try and avoid having to bring extra guys in the pass rush and initially see if they can get pressure with just four or five allowing them to drop as many defenders into coverage as possible. If they can get to Landry without blitzing on a regular basis, well then it's going to be a long day for Sooner Nation my friends.
From an OU perspective, I think you can expect them on offense to try and get their run game going early. It probably won't be easy considering KSU will likely load up the box in the early going, but I expect Heupel to stick with it even if it's not successful at first. I'd also expect Ryan Broyles to return to the Broyles we all know after having what was arguably the worst game of his career against Tech. Not from a statistical standpoint mind you, but just from a it never really felt like he was a part of the game perspective. On defense, if I'm honest I don't really know what to expect. Venables has tried to do so many different things with this defense, I'm not sure one can predict what he'll do on Saturday. Given KSU's running game, will he go back to a more traditional four man d-line? Would he go back to the 50-front defense that worked so well last year and that for some unknown reason has yet to utilize this year? What will they do at MLB? Will Tom Wort be able to hold up after missing the better part of the last two games? Will Jaydan Bird be used more and would KSU try to exploit him in pass coverage? How will this secondary perform coming off one of the worst outings in recent memory?
As you can see, there are a lot of questions for this OU defense and really the team in general. Of course a unexpected and embarrassing loss will do that for you. Now I know there are plenty of you out there with opinions on this game and this team. So what do you all expect to see this Saturday in Manhattan?