K-State takes down KU, 55-14
MANHATTAN — Phillip Brooks added a show-me wrinkle to the Sunflower Showdown.
Brooks, a sophomore from across the border in Lee's Summit, Mo., had a pair of first-half punt return touchdowns and another 40-yarder to set up a field goal as Kansas State rolled to its 12th straight victory over Kansas, 55-14, on Saturday at Bill Snyder Family Stadium.
The Wildcats, now 4-1 overall and 4-0 in the Big 12, also got a defensive touchdown in the first half on Justin Gardner's 24-yard interception return. The offense then caught up, scoring on all three third-quarter possessions, and the rout was on.
But it was Brooks who set the tone and stole the show with three returns for 147 yards in the first half, not to mention another for 42-yarder early in the fourth quarter that gave him 189 yards total on four returns for the game.
K-State finished with 381 yards total offense to 320 for KU. The Wildcats, who cleared their bench in the fourth quarter, had 129 yards rushing and 252 through the air. Will Howard was 17-of-24 passing for 243 yards and two touchdowns, and Deuce Vaughn rushed for 71 yards and a score on 11 carries, plus caught four passes for 81 more yards.
Kansas (0-5, 0-4) had the only touchdown of the fourth quarter on a 4-yard run by freshman quarterback Jalon Daniels. Daniels completed 22 of 39 passes for 207 yards and Velton Gardner ran 16 times for 72 yards to lead the Jayhawks.
K-State led 34-7 at halftime when Brooks brought a punt back 52 yards as time expired for his second score.
With both offenses sputtering early, Brooks also got the scoring started for K-State on a 55-yard return with 9:22 left in the first quarter. His 40-yard return, which gave the Wildcats possession at the KU 19, resulted in a 32-yard Blake Lynch field goal that made it 10-0.
Another Lynch field goal and Gardner's pick-six pushed it to 20-0 before KU got on the board with Daniels' 8-yard touchdown run. K-State answered with a 41-yard drive and 16-yard pass from Howard to Sammy Wheeler three plays after a muffed punt by the Jayhawks.
K-State's offense, which was limited to one touchdown and two field goals in the first half, got rolling after intermission. The Wildcats managed just 150 yards before the break, but rolled up 220 in the third quarter alone.
K-State got the ball to start the second half and marched 69 yards in six plays, with Vaughn scoring from a yard out. The touchdown was set up by a 37-yard completion from Howard to Chabastin Taylor on the previous play.
Taylor had four catches for 68 yards in the game.
On the Wildcats' next possession, Harry Trotter scored on a 1-yard run, and with 48 seconds left in the third, Howard hit a wide-open Briley Moore for 13 yards at the end of a 94-yard drive.