MANHATTAN, Kansas (AP) — For the last eight to nine months, Skylar Thompson has had to hear about the ongoing debate about who will be the starting quarterback for Kansas State. It may have taken longer than he or any Kansas State supporters may have wanted but after Saturday, Kansas State has their guy.
Thompson threw for two scores and ran for another and Kansas State ran away from UTSA 41-17 on Saturday.
Thompson, who had been in a much-discussed quarterback battle with Alex Delton, stood out with some stellar play and might have sealed up the starting job. Thompson was tough to tame through the air and on the ground.
“I felt like we played well today,” Thompson said. “Coming into this game we really wanted to build momentum going into Big 12 play and really wanted to put emphasis on starting the game well. I just trust my coaching and teammates and they made a lot of good plays today.”
The Kansas State (2-1) signal caller threw for 213 yards on 13-of-18 passing and connected on long aerial bombs to Dalton Schoen and Isaiah Zuber. Thompson also was lethal on the ground with 66 yards rushing highlighted by a 27-yard scamper for a touchdown midway through the third quarter.
“I think Skylar did a nice job and Alex (Delton) only had one throw but it was extremely well,” Kansas State head coach Bill Snyder said following the victory. “He (Thompson) played well, I do not think the demeanor of his approach was different; he just played a little better than he has. He made good decisions for the most part.”
The Wildcat defense held the UTSA (0-3) offense at bay for most of the afternoon and limited quarterback Cordale Grundy to 108 yards passing.
“Unfortunately we did not always execute to the fullest,” said UTSA head coach Frank Wilson. “But I think take away a couple of big-play opportunities, they weren’t going methodically down the field and just shoving us around. We held them to some third-down opportunities, but we just couldn’t get them off the field.”
Backup quarterback D.J. Gillins helped make the score a little more respectable late with a 10-yard touchdown pass in mop-up duty.
UTSA: The loss drops UTSA to 0-3 on the season and yet another game where the defense surrendered huge chunks of yardage. This time, the Roadrunners gave up more than 400 yards to a Kansas State offense that entered the game struggling to gain offensive consistency.
Kansas State: Despite the 72-yard TD pass from Alex Delton in the second half, Skylar Thompson more than likely ended the much-debated topic of who will be the Jayhawks’ starting quarterback. From the first series of the game, the Wildcats were much more efficient and balanced than they had been in their first two matchups of the season.
UTSA: The Roadrunners face Texas State on September 22.
Kansas State: The Wildcats face West Virginia on September 22.
STAT OF THE DAY: It took the Wildcats three games, but they finally scored their first rushing touchdown of the season after running back Alex Barnes rushed in from 3-yards out to give Kansas State its first score.