REASON #1: Brett Hundley
Brett Hundley, the UCLA quarterback who has thrown for 3019 yards and 21 touchdowns on the season, will play his last game in a Bruins’ uniform in the Alamo Bowl according to UCLA head coach Jim Mora, who stated he is “sure” Hundley will go pro after the game. Hundley is projected to be a second round NFL Draft pick by WalterFootball.com. Hundley, however, will look to cap off a successful college season with a Alamo Bowl win. If Hundley is able to lead UCLA to a victory in San Antonio, he will have led UCLA to consecutive bowl wins, a first for a program since the 1990s, in a career where he has also led UCLA to a 3-0 record against Bruin archrival USC.
REASON #2: UCLA Linebacker Corps
UCLA has fielded a defense this year led by 2013 Freshman All-American linebacker Myles Jack and 2014 Butkus Award winner Eric Kendricks, the latter of which has recorded 135 tackles on the year. Both Jack and Kendricks will be key for the Bruins in deciphering the multiple looks UCLA will receive from the Wildcats. UCLA will also need Jack and Kendricks to help create activity in the Kansas State backfield, as UCLA ranks in the bottom half in the Football Bowl Subdivision in tackles for loss and sacks per game.
REASON #3: Lockett Up
Both Tyler Lockett and Jake Waters will play their final game in a Wildcat uniform. Lockett will look to a cap off a career that has seen him become the all-time Kansas State leader in receptions, receiving yards, and receiving touchdowns. Lockett has the chance at a 100-reception season with seven receptions in the bowl. Waters has also cemented a great career for himself, and while highly unlikely, a 577-yard and eight-touchdown performance would place the two-year juco transfer second and first all-time in Kansas State passing yards and passing touchdowns, respectively. Waters currently ranks second in passing yards and third in passing touchdowns in Kansas State history.
REASON #4: Paul Perkins
While Hundley is a formidable force in the passing game, UCLA running back Paul Perkins led the Pac-12 in rushing with 1,381 yards. Wildcat fans hope that the Wildcat rush defense that averages surrendering 124.4 yards per game will have success against Perkins. If Kansas State can successfully shut down UCLA’s run game, the unit will be able to better focus on stopping the air assault from Hundley and easing pressure off of Nate Jackson, who will start at safety for the injured Dylan Schellenberg. Seniors Ryan Mueller and Jonathan Truman need to have impactful performances to help the defense accomplish the goal of shutting down Perkins along with the additional running threat provided by Hundley.
REASON #5: Remember the Alamo
The last time Kansas State played in the Alamo Bowl, a Wildcat team led by Michael Bishop entered the Alamo Bowl ranked 4th in the nation and fell to a Purdue team quarterbacked by Drew Brees. Kansas State entered the bowl on perhaps the most bitter note in program history after losing a shot at the national championship game after falling to Texas A&M in the Big XII Championship Game. Kansas State also enters the 2015 Alamo Bowl following a game in which it lost a shot at a conference championship. While this season’s Wildcat loss to Baylor was far less damaging to the Wildcat fanbase, an Alamo Bowl victory would provide Kansas State fans with a positive memory of San Antonio before a 2015 away game at UTSA
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