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MANHATTAN, Kan. – Quarterback Collin Klein threw for 475 yards and six touchdowns as K-State held its annual Purple-White spring game on a beautiful Saturday afternoon at Bill Snyder Family Stadium. The game, which ended in a 42-42 tie after the score was reversed at halftime, featured the No. 1 players on the offensive and defensive spring depth charts (Purple) against the No. 2 players on the White team.
The day was also monumental for the athletics department, football program, university and Manhattan community as the groundbreaking ceremony for the West Stadium Center project at Bill Snyder Family Stadium took place prior to Saturday’s game. Construction on the $75 million project
will begin immediately with completion set for the start of the 2013 season.
Klein led the Purple team on Saturday, finishing 47-of-56 for 475 yards and six touchdowns through the air and five carries for 49 yards on the ground. Klein’s top targets on the day proved to be Chris Harper, Tramaine Thompson and Curry Sexton. Harper led all receivers with 13 catches for 67 yards and two touchdowns. Thompson hauled in nine catches for 147 yards and a touchdown, while Sexton secured eight receptions for a game-high 153 yards and two touchdowns.
On the ground, Purple was led by Angelo Pease with 12 carries for 90 yards and a touchdown. Also reaching double figures in carries was Robert Rose with 10 carries for 88 yards and a touchdown. Rose also was effective out of the backfield in catching the ball, as he tallied five catches for 19 yards.
Defensively, Purple was paced by Tre Walker with 10 tackles. Vai Lutui and Meshak Williams finished with seven and five tackles, respectively. The pair each recorded three sacks on the day, while Lutui registered a total of four stops behind the line of scrimmage and a fumble recovery.
Klein, a team captain for the 2012 season, opened the afternoon 11-of-11 through the air, including a 7-of-7 effort on the second scoring drive for the Purple squad. Thompson picked up 19 yards on one toss, while Travis Tannahillcarded a 17 yard reception to set up a second red zone opportunity. Braden Wilson capped the drive with a one-yard dive to give Purple a 14-0 lead with 3:15 to play in the first quarter.
Purple marched down the field again on its third possession, with Klein connecting with Thompson for a 24 yard gain. Two plays later, Klein found Wilson out of the backfield for a 10-yard touchdown to open the second quarter and boost the Purple lead to 21-0.
The Purple team closed out the first half with two more touchdowns to lead 35-0 at the break. Klein connected with Sexton for a four-yard touchdown with 8:01 to play in the second quarter.
After Purple held White to a three and out, Purple used a 14-play, 79 yard drive capped by a one-yard touchdown run by Rose with 21 seconds to play in the opening stanza.
In the opening half, Klein finished 23-of-26 for 211 yards and two touchdowns through the air. Klein found nine different receivers in the first frame, including himself on a deflected pass that resulted in a two-yard gain. Thompson and Tannahill led the way with five catches apiece in the first half. Thompson led the Purple team with 79 yards, while Tannahill notched 42.
As with the two previous Purple-White spring games, the score was reversed at halftime to reflect White in front, 35-0. Klein started the comeback effort for Purple by connecting on his third touchdown pass of the afternoon with 4:14 to play in the third quarter by finding Harper in the back of the end zone for a seven-yard connection to bring Purple back to 35-6.
On the second play of the fourth quarter, Klein dispensed his fourth touchdown pass of the day by finding Sexton down the sideline for a 24-yarder and a 35-13 deficit with 14:22 to play.
White scored its first true points of the afternoon on the ensuing kickoff, as DeMarcus Robinson scampered 95 yards with 14:09 to play in the game and push White in front, 42-13. Offensively, Robinson finished with seven carries for 13 yards.
Klein answered the kickoff return touchdown with his fifth touchdown pass of the day on a 3-play, 63-yard drive. Klein again found Harper in the back of the end zone, this time on a four-yard completion with 13:00 to play.
Following a fumble recovery by Lutui, Wilson rumbled in for his second one-yard rushing touchdown of the afternoon to bring Purple within 15, 42-27, with 10:56 to play.
After Purple held White to another three and out, Pease zigged and zagged his way to a 32-yard touchdown run to pull Purple within eight points, 42-34, with 7:57 remaining in the game.
Klein completed the Purple comeback in the second half, as he dispensed his sixth touchdown pass of the afternoon, a six-yarder to Thompson in the left corner with 2:24 remaining. A two-point conversion pass from Klein to Rose evened the score at 42.
Consecutive sacks by Williams and Lutui on the ensuing White possession forced White to punt the ball back to Purple with 57 seconds remaining. An 11 yard rush by Klein, followed by a six yard completion to Sexton and a 12 yard rush by Pease set Purple up at the White 16 with 30 seconds remaining. Klein looked to the right corner of the end zone to seal the win, but White’s Weston Hiebert picked off the pass to preserve the tie.
(Story courtesy of KStateSports.com)