MANHATTAN, Kan. – Kansas State head coach Chris Klieman and select players met with members of the media on Tuesday inside the Vanier Family Football Complex prior to Saturday’s Big 12 opener against new conference member UCF. Links to video and audio of Klieman’s press conference – which was streamed live on Big 12 Now on ESPN+ – are above in addition to an audio link of player breakout interviews. A transcript of Klieman’s opening statement is below.
CHRIS KLIEMAN, HEAD COACH
“Good afternoon, everyone. It was obviously a difficult loss on Saturday to lose like that, and it became worse and more expensive on the loss because we did lose Daniel Green for the season. He had surgery this morning. Man, it’s been a tough couple of days around here for myself, for a lot of the sixth-year guys, a lot of the linebackers because he’s been the heart and soul for those guys and for our football team. Daniel and I have been through an awful lot since the first day I got here, and I’ve never seen a young man grow into such a man. What a leader that Daniel Green is and has been and will still be for our players the rest of this year, but he’ll do it in a different light as more of a student coach. I’m just gut wrenched by losing him, and not because of just the football part of it, but just having that kid around every day at practice and being really the lifeblood of the defense. Now some of the other guys have to step up.
“Treshaun Ward got banged up, you guys saw that. I think he’s doubtful. We’ll learn more later in the week, but I would say he’s doubtful. Will Howard I would say would be questionable. He didn’t practice yesterday. I think he’s limited today. We just got to figure that one out as the week goes on, but we probably won’t know on that one until later in the week. But all that being said, the message was to the guys on Monday we can’t let Missouri beat us twice. We have to come up with great game plans. No matter who’s playing at quarterback, running back, linebacker, and the show moves on, and we’ve got to continue to battle the adversity that we’re facing. Everybody else is battling a lot of stuff too. So, it’s our job as coaches to get the guys in great positions to be successful on Saturday against a really talented Central Florida team that, from what I understand, may be down a player or two as well.”