Kansas State Wildcats

An Open Letter to Brad Underwood From a K-State Fan

NCAA Basketball: Illinois at Nebraska

Dear Brad,

Kansas State University needs you. The K-State fan base wants you to be our next head basketball coach. Help unite us. We know that you bleed purple and still love Manhattan. If you truly want to come home, this opportunity may never present itself again.

K-State basketball is in a peculiar place right now. Three awful seasons in a row has led to fan apathy. Fans no longer fill Bramlage Colesium as they used to, and many no longer watch the games. That is not to say that we do not keep up with what is going on. We do. We have not gone away. We are just waiting for something to be excited about again. We want to be fanatical about K-State basketball again. We want to be proud of the program again. We want to win a Big 12 championship or two or three or more. We want to go to a Final Four and, who knows, maybe win it all someday. We believe that you can lead us on that ride.


If you accomplish great things at K-State, you will forever be a hero in Manhattan. They will name a street after you. They will name a drink after you at Kite’s, where you used to work when you were in school. And if you take us to the promised land, they might even build a statue of you. Is there any other college town in this country where you would be so beloved?

It may have been a few years since you have been to town. I visited just the other day. Every time I go, it seems like being transported into a different world from the hustle and bustle of life. Everyone is nice. You can walk into the gas station greeted with a smile and a friendly hello. I walked into my hotel the other day, and from the front desk person to all of the other employees I encountered, I instantly noticed the congeniality of everyone. They make you feel “at home.”  I made a lot of new friends and didn’t even have to try. I went to a local restaurant and was shocked at how pleasant everyone was. It is easy to forget that once you move away. If you come home, you and your family can experience that welcoming atmosphere again. Every day.

If money is an issue, I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that a dollar goes a lot further in Manhattan, Kansas than it does in Champaign, Illinois. You are a millionaire either way, but your dollars go a lot farther in Manhattan than they do in Champaign. Yesterday, the price for gas in Champaign was $4.59 a gallon. It’s $3.79 a gallon in Manhattan. The price of other goods and services pretty much aligns with that. I’m just sayin’.


I should also mention there are quite a few “old-timers” that believe you are the one to lead the program during this crucial time. Guys that played for K-State in the seventies, eighties, up to the present times would like you to come home and lead the program. That might not mean much to some, but I know it means the world to you.

How does this sound to you? “1986 K-State Graduate leads his Alma Mater to its first Final Four since 1964.” That has a nice ring to it, don’t you think? We would not expect that of you, of course. Make the NCAA tournament regularly, compete in the top half of the Big 12, beat KU at a decent rate, and maybe make a run in the NCAA tournament from time to time and this fan base will fall in love with you and support the program as long as you coach the team. We bleed purple as you do, and if you come home, you could help resurrect the program, help get everyone on the same page and get everyone rowing in the same direction. We want to win.  We want a program that we can be proud of again. Bill Snyder is a hero in Manhattan. You could be, too. We need someone who knows Manhattan, the people, and what it takes to win here. You are the perfect fit. Let’s do this.


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