Originally posted on Fox Sports Kansas City  |  Last updated 11/1/12
MANHATTAN, Kan. (AP) It may seem odd that an undefeated team, ranked third in the country and barreling toward the BCS title game, would consider itself an underdog. Old habits die hard at Kansas State. "We're always going to consider ourselves the underdogs just because of what everybody says all the time about us and how we're not the best athletes and everything else," punter Ryan Doerr said. "I don't think really much has changed to that." Despite its recent success, including wins over West Virginia and Texas Tech the past two weeks, Kansas State still has much to prove. Voters in the coaches' and Harris polls have them slotted behind unbeaten Oregon, and Notre Dame is giving chase, and that poses a problem with the two polls making up a big chunk of the BCS rankings that determine who plays for the national championship. "We still have a lot of people doubting us," fullback Braden Wilson said. "That's one of the things that drives us. We still think about that. We still use that. "But at the same time, whether people are telling us we're going to win or telling us we're going to lose, it's not going to change how we approach the game," Wilson said. "When people are doubting, it's just a little more motivation." It's easy to find examples of how players have developed this underdog mentality. Kansas State rarely gets big-name recruits, and most of the players making up the roster were rated three stars or less out of high school. So they're saddled with a reputation of being not quite as fast, not quite as big, not quite as strong as many other schools. Maybe those perceptions are why Kansas State was picked to finish eighth in the Big 12 last year by the league's coaches, only to win 10 games. Or why the coaches still guessed the Wildcats would finish in the bottom half this season. So while Kansas State (8-0, 5-0) is undefeated heading into Saturday's game against Oklahoma State, players are more than happy to keep their underdog status. "It's a good mindset for this team to have because it doesn't allow us to overlook anybody or any game," wide receiver Curry Sexton said. "Obviously you don't want to start getting high on yourself because that's when you get knocked off." Kansas State coach Bill Snyder said he does not believe in underdogs, because the competitive balance in the Big 12 is too great to say anybody is an underdog. More important to Snyder is whether his players consider themselves to be the favorite. That's why he consistently mentions the nail-biting nature of Kansas State's 10-7 win in the 2011 season opener against Eastern Kentucky, and why he reminds players that this year's 14-point victory over North Texas was probably about half of what the margin of victory could have been. For Snyder, it all goes to prove two points: No team can be taken for granted, and odds-makers do not make one iota of difference. "Somebody's betting money somewhere and established a point spread, and I guess they win a certain portion of the time to end up making money," Snyder said, "but they're wrong an awful lot of the time. "The point is, we see them, we know what kind of football team they are. Everybody that plays them knows what kind of football team they are." To everybody outside of the Vanier Football Complex, the Wildcats still seem to get overlooked. To those inside, that's just fine. "I think this team is very confident but not overconfident," Sexton said. "We feel like we can win every ballgame, but we're a team that doesn't allow our confidence to get in the way of what we need to do on the field. "We realize that we are what we got, and we go out there on Saturdays and we just have to do our jobs," Sexton added. "Underdog or not, we're just going to play like the underdog."
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Arthur Blank diagnosed with prostate cancer

Browns deny coverup of Manziel showing up drunk at practice

Jimmy Butler will miss 3-4 weeks with knee strain

Phil Jackson justifies firing Fisher with psychology lesson

Emmitt Smith takes shot at Colin Kaepernick

Eli Manning explains why he made face during Super Bowl

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Kings to keep coach George Karl

John Elway: ‘No deadline’ for Peyton Manning decision

Titans release former Pro Bowl safety Michael Griffin

Maple Leafs trade Dion Phaneuf to Senators in blockbuster deal

Tom Brady says he’s not among the greatest QBs ever

Bosh: ‘Scary part’ is Aldridge, Spurs can get better

Cleveland Browns refute report they covered up for Johnny Manziel

Jay Williams advocates for pot as painkiller for athletes

Photographer uninjured in SB collision with Corey Brown

Did Messi outbid Ronaldo for most expensive car?

Newton erotic novella ‘Dabbin’ with Cam’ released on Amazon

In Inglewood, representation by NFL may come with taxation

Mets will be present for two Royals’ WS ceremonies

Best and worst free agent signings of 2016 MLB offseason

McShay: Attending Michigan signing day a 'mistake'

Wofford sets NCAA 3-point FG percentage record

Phil Jackson reunion with Lakers possible?

Would it be smart for the Broncos to franchise Von Miller?

Ten storylines to watch heading into spring training

College Football News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Report: Kings to keep coach George Karl

Was Alain Vigneault right about NHL's lack of punishment towards Wayne Simmonds?

Report: Knicks fire coach Derek Fisher

The best and worst commercials from Super Bowl 50

Best and worst from Super Bowl 50

Six best plays from Super Bowl 50

Eli doesn't look thrilled as Peyton wins Super Bowl

Did Beyonce almost fall down during Super Bowl halftime show?

Curry to serve as drummer for Panthers

Report: Marshawn Lynch plans to retire

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker