MANHATTAN, Kan. – After tallying five tackles and his first interception of the season to help Kansas State earn a 31-3 victory at Baylor, senior safety Drake Cheatum has been named the Big 12 Newcomer of the Week, the conference office announced Monday.
It is the first honor for Cheatum and gives K-State nine Big 12 weekly honors this season, the second most in the conference (Oklahoma State – 10) and its most since the Wildcats also had nine in 2012.
A native of Mesquite, Texas, Cheatum was part of a stifling defense that held Baylor out of the end zone on the night. It was the third time this season the Wildcats did not give up a touchdown to a Big 12 opponent, the first time a K-State defense has done so since 2001. Cheatum put the game on ice with a fourth-quarter interception, K-State’s Big 12-leading 13th of the season.
On the night, K-State’s defense surrendered 39 yards or less on five of Baylor’s nine drives, while the Bears’ longest drive of the game was 56 yards that resulted in a 37-yard field goal as time expired in the first half.
A graduate transfer from Prairie View A&M prior to the 2022 campaign, Cheatum ranks fourth on the team with 40 tackles and has also tallied two pass breakups and a forced fumble. He has at least four tackles in each of the last eight games, including a highwater mark of six at TCU.
Kansas State, ranked 19th in this week’s Associated Press Top 25, travels to face West Virginia on Saturday inside Milan Puskar Stadium in Morgantown, West Virginia. Kickoff is slated for 1 p.m. (CT), and the game will be shown on Big 12 Now on ESPN+.
Following the game against the Mountaineers, K-State returns home for Senior Day with the Dillons Sunflower Showdown against Kansas on November 26. The game, which was announced as a sellout last week, will kick at 7 p.m. and be shown on FOX.