VegasInsider.com
VI Mobile Scores and Betting OddsVI Mobile Scores and Betting Odds Be Social
Home
NFL
NBA
NHL
MLB
NCAA FB
NCAA BK
Golf
Auto
Horses
Soccer
Boxing/MMA
More
Betting Tools

 
Steady K-State QB Klein a Heisman Trophy finalist

MANHATTAN, Kan. (AP) - Collin Klein is the Heisman Trophy finalist who fits no mold.

Advertisement
He was lightly recruited out of high school and ultimately chose to attend Kansas State, a program that had fallen on hard times. He was turned into a wide receiver, and then went back to being a quarterback, where he sat on the bench and bided his time.

It finally came last year, when he led the Wildcats to the Cotton Bowl, his bruises and bloody elbows and gritty toughness creating something that bordered on a cult following in the heart of the Flint Hills.

There's more to Klein, too, that stands out of the ordinary.

The guy plays the piano and the mandolin - how many college kids even know what a mandolin looks like? He's married to the daughter of one of the greatest players in Kansas State history, but when they gather for the holidays, they prefer card games to dwelling on the pressures of big-time football.

``He's a great story, and it's a story that will evolve over time, as we get old,'' said Kansas State wide receiver Chris Harper. ``It's a story about a guy that was humble, one of the most humble guys you'll ever meet.''

Harper certainly knows who would get his vote for college football's most prestigious award, and it wouldn't be Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel or Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te'o, though he admits that both of the other Heisman finalists are deserving of everything that's come their way.

It would be the fifth-year senior who led a ragtag group of guys predicted to finish somewhere in the middle of the Big 12 to the second Big 12 title in school history and a berth in the Fiesta Bowl. The kid from Loveland, Colo., with the nickname ``Optimus Klein.''

``In my vote, he should get it,'' Harper said of the Heisman Trophy, which will be awarded Saturday night in New York. ``Being a biased guy watching football, the dude - he's done some crazy things. I don't understand how he goes out there and has one bad game and he's already out of it. I didn't know it goes off of the last game you play. I thought it went off the whole season.''

Yes, therein lays the biggest knock against Klein.

Remarkably consistent all season, Klein had driven the Wildcats to the top of the BCS standings with two games left, a berth in the national championship game tantalizingly close. But he responded with a three-interception game in a loss at Baylor, and all those aspirations were dashed in just one night.

Most people thought Klein's Heisman hopes went with them.

But with Manziel and Te'o having already finished their regular seasons, Klein took the field last Saturday night with a captive national audience, needing to lead Kansas State past Texas to win the Big 12 title. He threw for 184 yards and a touchdown and ran for another 103 yards and two scores in a 42-24 romp on senior night.

``Well, I don't know about everybody else, but I don't know anybody who means more to his football team than Collin Klein,'' said Kansas State coach Bill Snyder. ``I think he's grown in the program over the course of time. He's had a major impact, obviously. I think certainly the quality of play that he brings to the table, but as I've said so many times, the old adage, he's a far better person than he is anything else.''

Klein has accounted for 37 touchdowns this season, including at least three in eight games, and became the first quarterback in the BCS era to run for at least 20 TDs and throw for 10 in back-to-back seasons.

The only players to have done it even once won the Heisman Trophy: Auburn's Cam Newton in 2010, Florida's Tim Tebow in 2007 and Eric Crouch of Nebraska in 2000.

``I'm just honored with this opportunity that the Lord has provided me,'' Klein said. ``I'm so proud to represent K-State in this, because I feel like my road is very synonymous and in line with the K-State way. It's been a process; it's been a journey. There have been a lot of ups and downs.''

Mostly ups, though: Klein threw for 2,490 yards and 15 touchdowns this season, and ran for 980 yards. He already holds school records for career rushing TDs and touchdown responsibility, is second in scoring and third in total yards, passing efficiency and total attempts.

All the numbers certainly make a compelling case for Klein to do what Michael Bishop could not in 1998 - bring home the Heisman Trophy. Bishop, who led the Wildcats to the brink of the national title game, finished second in the voting to runaway winner Ricky Williams, the star running back at Texas.

``He's a great guy, and that's really the highlight of who he is, and his individual success is definitely a tribute to our team,'' Kansas State linebacker Arthur Brown said. ``We definitely as a team feel like he's deserving of representing the Heisman candidate, but just having the opportunity is great in itself.''

Copyright 2017 by STATS LLC and Associated Press.
Any commercial use or distribution without the express written
consent of STATS LLC and Associated Press is strictly prohibited.

  
HEADLINES
Nelson: Ole Miss at Miss State
Williams: Big 12 Report - Week 13
Williams: ACC Report - Week 13
Marshall: Tech Trends - Week 13
Bookmaker: Books adjust Baker, Heisman
DiNitto: Opening Line Report - Week 13
Nelson: 4th Quarter Covers - Week 12
Akron grabs first MAC East title since '05
Miami (OH) routs Ball State, 28-7
MORE HEADLINES
 
Why Buy Picks From VegasInsider.com
NCAAFB College Football Handicapper Sports Picks Records
NCAA FB Hot Streaks
9-1 L10, 15-3 Run, 20-4 L10 Sat.
5-0 Sat, 19-8 L4 Saturdays, +1,285 TY
9-2 L11 G-Plays, 14-6 L20 Picks
8-1 Saturday, 10-2 L12 Over/Unders
5-2 Sat, 51-26 L10 Sat, +1,635 TY
12-4 L2 Sat., 15-6 Run, 7-3 G-Plays
18-8 L26 G-Plays, 13-4 Thursdays TY
13-7 L3 Weeks, 8-3 L11 G-Plays
3-1 G-Plays, 10-6 L2 Sat, 14-7 Run
+1,151 CFB Picks This Season
21-10 Run, 26-11 L8 Saturdays
4-0 Fri, 28-14 Run, 28-11 G-Plays
12-6 L18 G-Plays, +1,242 TY
3-1 Saturday, 4-1 L5 Guarantees
9-4 G-Plays, 23-12 Run, +1,220 TY
5-2 Record L2 Saturdays
6-1 L7 Guaranteed Plays
10-5 Saturday, 32-15 L47 Totals
5-2 Last Week, 12-4 L16 G-Plays
7-2 L9 Guaranteed Plays
12-6 Last 18 NCAA Picks
4-0 Record Tuesday
NCAA FB College Football Expert Picks - Mississippi Rebesl at Mississippi State Bulldogs
2017 CFB SEASON PICK RECORDS
Money Leaders
Handicapper Money
Scott Pritchard + 2489
Vince Akins + 1635
Mark Franco + 1285
Last Week's Leaders
Handicapper Money
Antony Dinero + 960
Scott Pritchard + 700
Pat Hawkins + 580
Percentage Leaders
Handicapper Pct
Scott Pritchard 71 %
Vince Akins 60 %
Mark Franco 60 %
Guaranteed Leaders
Handicapper Money
Antony Dinero + 1585
Scott Pritchard + 1184
Bruce Marshall + 668
Over-Under Leaders
Handicapper Money
Scott Pritchard + 1244
Kyle Hunter + 1002
Pat Hawkins + 660
Member Leaders
Handicapper Money
Mark Franco + 780
Marc Lawrence + 771
Gary Bart + 723
MORE PICK RECORDS
  
corner graphic
With a VI Gold Membership, you can SAVE 10% off a Live Odds subscription, SAVE 20% off Daily Pick packages, and receive access to up to 1,000 Member Plays each month!
VI Gold Membership