MANHATTAN — One of the biggest questions surrounding the K-State football team this season has been whether or not head coach Bill Snyder will return for his 27th season next year. Before his team headed to Phoenix, Ariz., for its matchup against UCLA in the Cactus Bowl, Snyder spoke to the media Wednesday afternoon at the Vanier Family Football Complex in Manhattan. Snyder noted that he has not made up his mind about his future at K-State.
“I’m in the process of (deciding whether or not to return). It’ll be a little bit yet, because of the bowl preparation,” Snyder said.
Snyder talked about some of the factors that he needs to evaluate when making a decision whether or not to return in 2018.
“It’s the same things that I’ve always talked about. I’ve had some dialogue with my family. I’ve had some dialogue with our administration. I need a little more dialogue with them. As far as the people in our program and the players, I have to assess exactly the impact — positive or negative — that I’ve had with them. It’s the same things that I’ve always said. I just have to be more thorough with it. For me, it’s a big decision,” Snyder said.
At 78 years old, Snyder is the oldest active head coach in college football. Since taking over at K-State in 1989, Snyder has put together a 209-110-1 record. Under Snyder, K-State has made 18 bowl games, winning eight of them. The Cactus Bowl matchup Dec. 26 will mark Snyder’s 19th bowl appearance as K-State’s head coach. Snyder has also won two Big 12 Championships with K-State, in 2003 and 2012.
This season, K-State owns a 7-5 record, with a 5-4 mark in the Big 12. K-State finished the regular season ranked No. 4 in the conference. K-State ended the regular season with two straight wins against then-No. 10 Oklahoma State (45-40) and Iowa State (20-19). However, K-State also lost three straight games in the middle of the season to Texas (34-40), then-No. 6 TCU (6-26), and then-No. 9 Oklahoma (35-42).
K-State athletic director Gene Taylor noted that Snyder is waiting until after the Cactus Bowl to really evaluate his decision.
“I think he would like to get into it soon after the bowl game. We haven’t really got into a lot of specifics. He told me that he wants to do a long evaluation and talk to his family. I think he wants to talk to (K-State president Richard Myers), and they have. The thing that I have heard from him is that he will give me an answer as soon as he can after the bowl game,” Taylor said.
Taylor noted that he does not have a guess as to which direction Snyder is leaning.
“A good friend of mine told me (Snyder) could be a great poker player. He does not give you a sense of what he is thinking. I honestly couldn’t tell you. I go back and forth. I really do. I couldn’t give you a sense one way or another what he’s thinking,” Taylor said.
Taylor said that he is prepared if Snyder decides not to return as K-State’s coach next season.
“If it were to change, I think the sooner the better. It would make things simple. I think there are still a lot of potential guys out there that I’ve had on my mind that would potentially be available (to be K-State’s next head coach). If (Snyder) were to tell me that he will retire, I would have to react to it. If he doesn’t, then I won’t have to react to it. I’ve had all of the scenarios in my mind. I’ve talked to our staff about it. Until he walks in and tells me what he’s thinking, I’m planning on him being here,” Taylor said.
K-State and UCLA will kick off Dec. 26 at 8 p.m. (CT). The game will be broadcast on ESPN.