I just came home from the football game where President Jon Wefald and Bill Snyder were inducted into the K-State Hall of Fame, and I feel I must express my feelings and gratitude to you.
Though I graduated from K-State in 1986, I want you to know it is because of what you two have done I will forever remember this university and what it means to me.
I think college football is the best sport in the world. I will never fail to get the chills the first game of every year when I watch the student section during the pregame “Wabash Cannonball.”
It doesn’t matter what stadium you are in — the students and their pride in their university is what college football is all about. Though we could debate the NCAA and what money has done to the sport forever, when a university band plays the school’s fight song and the students show their pride, there are no pro contracts to think of, no money — just school pride and love for their university.
Coach Snyder, it is because of you the Wildcat fans can hold onto that feeling when we hear the “Wabash Cannonball.” And it is how you did it that makes it special. You spoke at my son’s scholarship awards banquet and told how your first year here you asked all the graduating seniors to come in to your office and let you know if there was anything you could do for them.
These were players who would never win a game for you but you let them know it was not all about football but you were willing to help them succeed in life. You built people not just football players.
Dr. Wefald, your love for this university is without question. When my son and I were on campus prior to his enrollment, we were walking east of Anderson Hall when a purple Jeep stopped on the road and the passenger asked us how our day had been and if there was anything he could do to help us out. Who was that passenger but none other than the university president? You didn’t just speak and drive off, you waited for us to come over to the window, and you truly wanted to know if there was anything you could do to help us out.
You let us know your door was always open for students or prospective students to come in and talk. While you two were a part of this university, enrollment increased and the campus grew. K-State was somewhere people heard of not just because of football but because of academics and research.
My college adviser and many professors have made me a better person, and I thank them for that. And though it was after I graduated when you both came to K-State, it is because of you two this university will always hold a place in my heart. If only our politicians, on both sides of the aisle, were as sincere about their love for their country as you two are for your university, maybe this great country could prosper as much as K-State has and did under your leadership.
Jon L. Ungerer