Kansas State Wildcats

Chris Klieman Says ‘A Lot’ of Changes Coming to Kansas State Football in 2024

Since taking over the Kansas State program in 2019, Chris Klieman’s tenure has almost served as an extension of the Bill Snyder era.

In many ways, the two have led the Wildcats to success using the same principles. K-State has become renowned for doing more with less on the recruiting trail, beating more talented teams with better game plans and execution, and always having an advantage in the margins, especially when it comes to special teams.

During his time in Manhattan, Klieman has put together a record of 39-24, missing just one bowl game (in 2020), and is 19-8 (13-5 Big 12) over the last two seasons. In 2022, the Wildcats won their first outright Big 12 title since 2003. Last year, they fell short of the Big 12 title game, finishing tied for fourth in the standings.

 

Ahead of the 2024 season, Klieman and company are experimenting with some changes to help them get back to Arlington. With a new offensive staff, Avery Johnson at the controls, and plenty of new faces to bring into the fold on both sides of the ball, there will be “a lot” of changes in Manhattan when the upcoming season does get underway.

“A lot,” Klieman said via The Kansas City Star. “A lot. But we are not going to go much further than that.”

Klieman did give some other details on those changes as they pertain to the offensive and defensive sides of the ball.

“We are doing a lot of similar things but a lot of different things as far as some run-scheme stuff,” Klieman said. “Then in the passing game, we’re doing some things to get the ball on the perimeter a little bit more and taking some shots downfield. There are some things that are going to be different that people have not seen here.”

 

Throughout the spring we’ve seen glimpses of Johnson pushing the ball downfield more often, so that certainly lines up with what we’re seeing from K-State offensively.

On the other hand, it sounds like the Wildcats will do everything they can to get more pass rushers on the field and make life harder on opposing quarterbacks. Some of that means getting away from the 3-3-5 that we’ve seen and moving to more four-man fronts.

“We did a little bit of that this spring, but not a ton of it,” Klieman said. “We are really doing some four (defensive linemen) stuff, whether that is on early downs or third downs. We had some plans for things, but we got some injuries, and we weren’t able to do it all. We had four defensive linemen, really three defensive ends and one defensive tackle.”

Kansas State fans will have to wait until August 31, when the Wildcats take on UT Martin in their season opener, to get a real look at the changes. From the sounds of it, though, there’s a lot to be excited about for the 2024 season in Manhattan.

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