They Said It: Postgame quotes from Chris Klieman, K-State players

CHRIS KLIEMAN, K-STATE HEAD COACH

Opening Statement…“I’m pleased with the win. I thought we did some really good things. I’m excited about how fast we started. We won the toss and took the ball and scored the first play. I thought we had a really nice series of plays that we were going to operate and low and behold we took it for a touchdown. That was a big big boost for us right away. Got a block punt early in that first quarter as well. I think Seth Porter is as good as there is at finding gaps and finding seams and making a big block and then getting the scoop and score with Des (Desmond Purnell).. And then just kind of went back and forth. I’m impressed with Coach Nielsen’s defense. I thought they did some really good things. I thought they had some really good guys up front. They did a really good job in some rush lanes. Maybe forced us to check the ball down, sometimes pretty quickly. But overall a solid first half. In the second half we came out, we got a big stop, then we had a really nice sustained drive to get another touchdown and then it became kind of a game of a lot of our backups. But pleased, we played a ton of players that are gonna get a great education from the film because we’re gonna need them as the season continues on but overall really, really pleased with the shut out and the 34-0 win.”

On Adrian Martinez…“I thought he handled everything really well. You guys are smart enough to know we changed a lot of things offensively. I mean, we were not what you saw last year or even some in the bowl and we were tempo most of the time. And I thought our operation was really good. I thought he did a great job with the operational stuff. Obviously, we probably missed a couple of chances. Sometimes there were protection issues, sometimes maybe we just didn’t locate a receiver but I thought he played really well and I thought he played within himself. And you know, the one thing is, we didn’t turn the football over and you don’t turn the football over and you block a punt and rush the ball for 297 yards good things are gonna happen.”

On the shutout…“It’s really rare anymore in college football and so exciting for the younger guys that got an opportunity in that last drive. Yeah, they moved the ball, their ones moved it against a lot of our young guys, but in the same respect we found a way to get a stop and so pleased for those guys because it was the older guys during the timeouts are saying ‘ Man preserve the shutout, preserve the shutout up they did.”

On the passing game not getting going…“It didn’t quite find its footing now but I think we can clean that up and shore that up. I’m not concerned about it at all because I’ve seen us operate at a really high level throwing the football through fall camp. That’s something we’ll just keep working on, but I’m not concerned about it. We need to throw the ball and we need to continue to be more efficient.”

ADRIAN MARTINEZ, SENIOR QUARTERBACK

On the team’s performance…

“It was a great team win. Special teams did a really good job, defense did a really good job. You’d always prefer to learn after a win instead of a loss. So we feel really good about that but we just know we could be a lot better.”

On his comfort level..

“I felt really good. First experience in the Bill. Just taking what they gave us. I think they didn’t want us to take deep shots and just played off a lot. Our run game was working really well and you’ve always just got to stay patient and take what they give you.”

On his first time playing at Bill Snyder Family Stadium…

“It was a great experience. A new home for me. That first third down kind of took me by surprise by how loud they were. So I was excited about that. My first touchdown, the ref had to warn me not to high five the crowd, which I should’ve known better. Good experience.

DEUCE VAUGHN, SOPHOMORE RUNNING BACK

On the most disappointing part of the night…

“I was pretty excited about it. That’s something I’ve been working on for quite a bit of time, wanting to be able to improve my blocking and to get out there on the first play and spring Leek (Malik Knowles) like that. That’s big time, I was super excited for it.”

KADE WARNER, SENIOR WIDE RECEIVER

On facing a Power Five opponent next week…

“It’s another game week, we didn’t treat this any less than a Power Five opponent and we won’t treat the next game or the next game after that any less.”

On Adrian Martinez…

“I think Adrian did a great job of just letting the game come to him. I think he did a good job of doing what he needed to do when he needed to do it. He’s definitely evolved. He’s become a lot more mature, he’s a lot more understanding, and I think he just knows a lot more. The way he listens to us, the way he understands what we’re trying to say, all those things make him a great leader and a great quarterback.”

On playing again…

“I wake up in the morning, think about the day and I know it’s going to be a great day. I get out there and see the fans and just how much that means to me as a player and the journey I’ve been on that not every game’s guaranteed.”

COOPER BEEBE, SENIOR OFFENSIVE LINEMAN

On KT Leveston’s play…

“I felt pretty good, obviously he didn’t have the experience and getting there for the first time can be very nerve racking. I thought he handled it well, we communicated well and I thought he did a good job.”

On the play of the offensive line…

“I thought we did pretty well. Obviously we still have some stuff to clean up as expected for the first game. But overall I was pretty impressed with the guys because a lot of them haven’t had that playing time. So I was pretty impressed overall.”

AUSTIN MOORE, JUNIOR LINEBACKER

On Khalid Duke’s play…

“I think he played really well. I think he was moving really well because of his injury. He’s obviously a stud, a really athletic dude and I’m just excited for him to continue to progress as he continues to get better.”

On what he did best…

“I think just communicating and seeing my keys is probably the best thing I did and that allowed me to play fast.”

CINCERE MASON, SENIOR DEFENSIVE BACK

Ten his interception…

“Yeah I got the pass read, I kicked to the passing stream and then I just read the quarterback.

On getting the shutout..

“It was great. The younger guys came in and they contributed and finished it out for us.

BRENDAN MOTT, JUNIOR DEFENSIVE END

On the competition of South Dakota…

“It’s just communicating. It’s the first game, we knew what they were going to come out in but who knows they could’ve come out in a whole different defense so it’s just communicating and talking with the coaches.”

On his journey…

“It’s been a journey for sure. And that’s the biggest thing that I could say to anyone, is everyone’s journey is different and just embrace your journey and enjoy the grind and the process and that’s what I think is super important here and is preached here, so just keep grinding.”

On the first shut-out game since 2019…

“It was awesome for the younger guys in the end to get that fourth down stop, all of us on the sidelines were all juiced up. We were happy for them, that was big.”

KOBE SAVAGE, JUNIOR SAFETY

On a touchdown start setting the tone for the game…

“It was exciting, seeing Malik run like that and hearing the fans go crazy because I’ve never had anything like this so it was amazing. I enjoyed it a lot.”

On defense stepping up on fourth downs…

“Everybody’s going to have to bring it regardless of who you are, SEC, FCS, FBS, it doesn’t matter, fourth down we’ll be there.”

On the Mizzou game next week…

“I’m excited to play some SEC football. I’m going to treat Mizzou like they’re Alabama and so was South Dakota. I’m going to treat them as if they’re the best team in the conference. There’s not going to be a drop off from this game, probably more juice, but it’s not going to be anything less.”

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