Super sub Howard leads No. 23 K-State to 31-3 rout of Baylor

Nov 12, 2022, 5:19 AM | Updated: 9:11 pm
Kansas State quarterback Will Howard (18) looks to pass the ball past Baylor linebacker Matt Jones ...

Kansas State quarterback Will Howard (18) looks to pass the ball past Baylor linebacker Matt Jones (2) in the second half of an NCAA college football game, Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022, in Waco, Texas. (AP Photo/Jerry Larson)

(AP Photo/Jerry Larson)

              Kansas State quarterback Will Howard (18) looks to pass the ball past Baylor linebacker Matt Jones (2) in the second half of an NCAA college football game, Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022, in Waco, Texas. (AP Photo/Jerry Larson)
            
              Kansas State tight end Ben Sinnott reacts to his touchdown catch in the second half as Baylor safety Christian Morgan, left and cornerback Mark Milton, right look on in the second half of an NCAA college football game, Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022, in Waco, Texas. (Rod Aydelotte/Waco Tribune-Herald via AP)
            
              Kansas State head coach Chris Klieman, center, thanks the fans after defeating Baylor in an NCAA college football game, Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022, in Waco, Texas. (AP Photo/Jerry Larson)
            
              Kansas State running back Deuce Vaughn (22) breaks free from Baylor cornerback Mark Milton in the first half of an NCAA college football game, Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022, in Waco, Texas. (AP Photo/Jerry Larson)
            
              Kansas State wide receiver Phillip Brooks runs downfield past Baylor linebacker Matt Jones and tight end Ben Sinnott, right, in the first half of an NCAA college football game, Saturday, Nov.12, 2022, in Waco, Texas. (Rod Aydelotte/Waco Tribune-Herald via AP)
            
              Baylor quarterback Blake Shapen (12) runs by Kansas State linebacker Desmond Purnell (32) in the first half of an NCAA college football game, Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022, in Waco, Texas. (AP Photo/Jerry Larson)
            
              Kansas State quarterback Adrian Martinez (9) is looked over by Kansas State offensive lineman KT Leveston (70) after getting injured on a play against Baylor in the first half of an NCAA college football game, Saturday, Nov.12, 2022, in Waco, Texas. (Rod Aydelotte/Waco Tribune-Herald via AP)
            
              Kansas State tight end Ben Sinnott catches a pass over Baylor linebacker Jackie Marshall in the first half of an NCAA college football game, Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022, in Waco, Texas. (AP Photo/Jerry Larson)

WACO, Texas (AP) — No. 23 Kansas State lost control of its path to the Big 12 championship game last week when quarterback Will Howard was watching from the sideline.

The super sub helped the Wildcats get it back, with a little help from undefeated conference leader TCU.

Howard threw for three touchdowns after Adrian Martinez exited with another injury, and the Wildcats buoyed their Big 12 title hopes with a 31-3 rout of Baylor on Saturday night.

The defending conference champion Bears (6-4, 4-3 Big 12) will need help to get back to the championship game after a three-game winning streak had put them back in contention.

The Wildcats (7-3, 5-2) are now alone in second place behind the fourth-ranked Horned Frogs, who sent No. 18 Texas into a tie with Baylor behind Kansas State with a 17-10 victory in Austin.

Kansas State dropped into the second-place tie last week with a 34-27 loss to Texas, when Martinez returned from a knee injury and threw for 326 yards, but had two key turnovers.

Howard came on after Martinez appeared to injure his lower body getting a first down on a quarterback sneak in the first quarter. The school offered no specifics on the injury.

Howard, the junior who threw four TD passes in a 48-0 victory over then-No. 9 Oklahoma State two weeks ago, put the Wildcats ahead 7-0 on the same drive with a 15-yard scoring pass to Ben Sinnott.

Howard has thrown seven TD passes without an interception in seven-plus quarters filling in for Martinez, who was on the sideline with his helmet on after getting checked by the medical staff.

Coach Chris Klieman said Martinez was available to return, but the staff figured he would be limited by the injury.

“I looked at Will, and I said, ‘Will, you got it,'” Klieman said. “He played really well, and we blocked exceptionally well for him. And man, we made some plays.”

The Wildcats are still interested in redshirting Howard, a junior who has spent most of the season behind the senior transfer from Nebraska.

The intrigue only grows with Kansas State now in position to play for the championship Dec. 3 at the home of the Dallas Cowboys.

“It’s a conversation that we had this week, and we told him we’re going to have one every week,” Klieman said. “Will’s in a good place right now. Adrian’s in a good place right now.”

Blake Shapen threw two interceptions in the Bears’ worst offensive showing in a Big 12 game this season as a four-game winning streak in the series ended.

“Obviously everybody knows what was on the line tonight, probably too much,” Baylor linebacker Dillon Doyle said. “You just box it and move on. It’s really hard to do, but it’s the same thing with life.”

Deuce Vaughn had a 20-yard touchdown catch and 106 yards rushing, making him the third Kansas State running back with consecutive 1,000-yard seasons (1,081 yards this season).

Howard was 19 of 27 for 196 yards, and Sinnott had another TD from 19 yards while finishing with seven catches for 89 yards.

K-STATE KEEPAWAY

The Wildcats were 8 of 13 on third down, which helped them keep possession for a season-best 37 minutes, 37 seconds. Kansas State also was opportunistic, getting four touchdowns and a field goal out of five trips inside the Baylor 20-yard line.

RUSHING DROPOFF

The Bears had a season-low 103 yards rushing a week after getting 281 with five touchdowns in a 38-35 victory over Oklahoma. Richard Reese needed 83 yards to break Shock Linwood’s nine-year-old school freshman record of 881 but finished with just 54. A week after getting a career-high 192 yards, Craig “Sqwirl” Williams had just 17.

THE TAKEAWAY

Kansas State: The Wildcats wasted little time showing faith in Howard. On his first drive, they ran a reverse flea-flicker, and he completed a 23-yard pass to Sinnott. The first TD toss to Sinnott came two plays later.

Baylor: Coach Dave Aranda tried to spark a struggling offense late in the third quarter by going for it on fourth-and-3 from the Baylor. Monaray Baldwin’s catch gained just 1 yard, and DJ Giddens sent many fans to the exits on a 1-yard TD for the final margin early in the fourth.

UP NEXT

Kansas State: At West Virginia next Saturday with the Mountaineers coming off a 23-20 home victory over Oklahoma on a game-ending field goal. The Wildcats ended a five-game losing streak in the series with a 34-17 victory at home last year.

Baylor: No. 4 TCU visits McLane Stadium next Saturday. The Horned Frogs have won six of seven in the series since the Bears’ 61-58 home victory in McLane’s debut season in 2014. That was the year both teams had one loss and were left out of the first four-team playoff.

___

AP college football: https://apnews.com/hub/college-football and https://twitter.com/ap_top25. Sign up for the AP’s college football newsletter: https://tinyurl.com/mrxhe6f2

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Brazil's Neymar, from right, celebrates with team mates Lucas Paqueta, Raphinha and Vinicius Junior...
Associated Press

Brazil dancing again after big win at World Cup

DOHA, Qatar (AP) — The joy — and the dancing — are back for five-time champion Brazil at the World Cup. The big win over South Korea on Monday secured Brazil a berth in the quarterfinals in Qatar. It also restored the team’s confidence after a tumultuous start to the tournament in which the Seleçao […]
1 day ago
Paulo Dybala runs during a training session of Argentina's national soccer team in Doha, Saturday, ...
Associated Press

Paulo Dybala, the Serie A standout not needed by Argentina

DOHA, Qatar (AP) — Paulo Dybala posted a photo of himself on Instagram laughing along with his Argentina teammate Lionel Messi, with the accompanying words: “We carry on with a smile! Let’s go.” Argentina might be getting ever closer to a place in the World Cup final but, on a purely personal level, the tournament […]
1 day ago
FILE - Wilt Chamberlain of the Philadelphia Warriors holds a sign in the dressing room in Hershey, ...
Associated Press

Analysis: In the NBA, 100 points no longer assures anything

If the NBA has a magic number, it’s 100. Wilt Chamberlain’s single-game scoring record. A perfect shooting percentage. And the rule pretty much seemed to be that if a team scored 100 points in a game, it probably was going to walk off the floor as a winner. Not anymore. Put simply, 100 doesn’t guarantee […]
1 day ago
Deion Sanders speaks after being introduced as the new head football coach at the University of Col...
Associated Press

Deion Sanders’ arrival swipes buzz from bungling Broncos

DENVER (AP) — Deion Sanders sauntered into the Arrow Touchdown Club for what felt more like an old-fashioned tent revival than a news conference to introduce the University of Colorado’s splashy new hire of “Coach Prime” as its new head football coach. At that very moment Sunday afternoon, the Denver Broncos were predictably blowing another […]
1 day ago
A fan of Japan picks up garbages at the end of the World Cup round of 16 soccer match between Japan...
Associated Press

What’s next for Japan after exit on penalties at World Cup?

DOHA, Qatar (AP) — Japan reached the round of 16 for the fourth time at a World Cup. It got knocked out in the round of 16 for the fourth time in a 3-1 loss to Croatia on penalty kicks after a 1-1 draw in regulation and extra time. EXPECTATION VS. PERFORMANCE Coach Hajime Moriyasu […]
1 day ago
FILE - Soccer player Samuel Eto'o watches warmups before an International Champions Cup soccer matc...
Associated Press

Samuel Eto’o filmed in altercation outside World Cup game

DOHA, Qatar (AP) — Cameroon soccer federation president and former star player Samuel Eto’o was filmed apparently kicking a man to the ground in an altercation outside a World Cup stadium early Tuesday. Eto’o had paused to pose for photos with fans near Stadium 974 after Brazil beat South Korea 4-1. Footage circulating on social […]
1 day ago
Super sub Howard leads No. 23 K-State to 31-3 rout of Baylor