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QB Thompson serves as constant in K-State offense's season of change

Kansas State v Texas Tech Skylar Thompson
Posted at 6:01 PM, Sep 03, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-03 19:01:59-04

MANHATTAN, Kan. — Kansas State football must replace its entire offensive line and has plenty of unknowns at offensive skill positions as well.

Fortunately for the Wildcats, there's no question who will play quarterback, where fifth-year senior Skylar Thompson returns.

"I think it's a huge deal," K-State offensive coordinator Courtney Messingham said Thursday in a videoconference with reporters, "not just for myself, but for our offense — knowing that, if it's third down, he's going to understand how to make it work."

Thompson, a Fort Osage graduate and the 2015 Thomas A. Simone Award winner as the top high school player in the Kansas City area, is on the watch lists for the Manning and Maxwell awards as well as for the Wuerffel Trophy, which combines football success with community service.

"A big part of offenses being successful and moving the ball down the field and moving the chains is having a trigger guy that makes things right," Messingham said.

He's confident the Wildcats have that in Thompson — who has made 27 starts in the last three season, including all 13 games in 2019.

Thompson enjoyed his best season as a junior, completing 177 of 297 passes for 2,315 yards with 12 touchdowns and five interceptions. He also ran for 405 yards and 11 touchdowns, all of which were career-highs.

K-State opens the 2020 season Sept. 12 against Arkansas State at Bill Snyder Family Stadium in Manhattan. Kickoff is set for 2:30 p.m. on FS1.

Coach Chris Klieman's crew opens Big 12 play a week later with an 11 a.m. kickoff at Oklahoma.