Collin Klein's 2 TDs help Kansas St. slip past Texas
AUSTIN, Texas -- Collin Klein and Kansas State just keep finding ways to win.
A week after a wild overtime thriller, Klein and the Wildcats survived a dominating performance by the Texas defense for a rugged 17-13 victory despite gaining just 121 total yards.
Klein was clutch when he absolutely had to be.
Klein passed for a touchdown in the final seconds of the first half and capped a short drive in the third quarter with his 25th rushing touchdown of the season.
There weren't many other highlights for Klein and the Wildcats (9-2, 6-2 Big 12), but it was enough for Kansas State's fourth win in a row over the Longhorns. The Wildcats are the only Big 12 team with a winning record over Texas.
"I just love this team," Klein said. "Bottom line is we made some plays."
They didn't make too many.
Klein was sacked five times, held to 4 yards rushing -- he came in averaging 101 -- and completed 9 of 17 passes in an offense that managed just eight first downs. He needs two more rushing touchdowns to tie the Big 12 season record set by Texas running back Ricky Williams in 1998.
"They just beat the tar out of us," Kansas State coach Bill Snyder said of the Texas defense.
Down 17-3 in the third, Texas (6-4, 3-4) had a chance to rally behind backup sophomore Case McCoy, who came in after freshman David Ash threw his second interception. The turnover set up Klein's rushing touchdown.
McCoy led the Longhorns to a touchdown on his first drive, completing all three of his passes and a rollout 36-yard touchdown strike to tight end Blaine Irby.
Texas got within 17-13 on Justin Tucker's second field goal and momentum seemed to be with the Longhorns until their last chance to rally ended at midfield on the final play. Texas snapped the ball as time expired and McCoy ran around for several seconds before throwing a short pass that fell incomplete nowhere near the end zone.
"I really thought we had a chance to win until that last play was over," Texas coach Mack Brown said.
Texas outgained Kansas State 310-121 but the return of running backs Malcolm Brown and Joe Bergeron couldn't provide points. Texas has scored just one touchdown in the last two games. Both were losses that spoiled dominating performances by the defense.
The younger brother of Colt McCoy, who engineered so many rallies for the Longhorns in his career, couldn't muster another one. Case McCoy finished with 80 yards passing and Cody Johnson ran for 61 yards for the Longhorns.
"I was proud of the way we fought," said McCoy, whose play will likely reignite the quarterback debate for Texas' final two games. Ash has started five in a row and is 2-3.
McCoy and Ash could learn a lesson from Klein, who came through with big plays despite getting beaten up most of the night.
After getting sacked for the fourth time, Klein converted a 3rd-and-14 with a 24-yard sideline pass to Sheldon Smith, who barely kept his left foot inbounds. Two plays later, Klein hit Chris Harper with a perfect strike to the corner of the end zone. Texas cornerback Carrington Byndum never turned around on the throw and Harper snagged an easy touchdown to give Kansas State a 10-3 halftime lead.
Ty Zimmerman's interception set up Klein's rushing touchdown and a pass interference penalty against Byndum in the end zone put the Wildcats on the 3. Klein plowed over Texas linebacker Emmanuel Acho to put Kansas State ahead 17-3.
"If you had told me would hold (Klein) to four yards rushing," Brown said, "I would have known that we won the game."
2022 Big 12 Conference Standings