The NCAA allows 15 spring practices for football programs. The 15th practice is most commonly used as a team’s spring game. This Saturday, the K-State Wildcats will play their annual Purple/White Spring Game.
Even though there has been discussion between the pros and cons of having the spring game as opposed to just having a closed practice. The simple answer, is fans.
“It is for our fan base,” head coach Bill Snyder said. “I prefer to have another practice, but our fans enjoy seeing our players and seeing the environment and coming for the auction and all those types of things. So we will always do it in that respect for our fan base.”
The format of K-State spring game does not change often. While Snyder said he hasn’t completely decided what the format will be quite yet, he has a good idea.
“Odds would be in favor of it being ones against twos; the No. 1 offense and the No. 1 defense on the same unit,” Snyder said. “It will be game-like, just like we always have done. There is a possibility that we could put our No. 1 offense on the same side as our No. 2 defense and vice versa.”
For many teams across the country, spring season has come and gone. The Wildcats play one of the later springs games across the country. While other teams may see the advantage in an earlier spring schedule, Snyder said he sees the benefit in the way K-State does it.
“The value of it is that we have an extended period of time as far as our out-of-season program is concerned for guys to get stronger, faster, quicker change or direction – all the physical aspects of it,” Snyder said. “I think each year is different; it depends on what the needs are.”
For the players, the spring game is an exciting event. While a practice may provide more from a football X’s and O’s standpoint, it’s always good to see the fans again.
“The true spring game was last Saturday with the real scrimmage of guys,” junior defensive end Ryan Mueller said. “This Saturday is definitely for the fans. It is a fan event. I am excited to see all the fans and some of my friends coming to the game.”
The spring game is set to kick off at 1:10 p.m. from Bill Snyder Family Stadium. Former K-State Wildcats Darren Sproles and Terence Newman will be represented as the honorary coaches for the game. Both Sproles and Newman were All-Americans during their time at K-State and have continued their football careers in the national football league.