“Well, I don't know about everybody else, but I don't know anybody who means more to his football team than Collin Klein,” said Kansas State coach Bill Snyder. “I think he's grown in the program over the course of time. He's had a major impact, obviously. I think certainly the quality of play that he brings to the table, but as I've said so many times, the adage, he's a far better person than he is anything else.”
Klein has accounted for 37 touchdowns this season, including at least three in eight games, and became the first quarterback in the BCS era to run for at least 20 TDs and throw for 10 in back-to-back seasons.
The only players to have done it even once won the Heisman Trophy: Auburn's Cam Newton in 2010, Florida's Tim Tebow in 2007 and Eric Crouch of Nebraska in 2000.
“I'm just honored with this opportunity that the Lord has provided me,” Klein said. “I'm so proud to represent K-State in this, because I feel like my road is very synonymous and in line with the K-State way. It's been a process; it's been a journey. There have been a lot of ups and downs.”
Mostly ups, though: Klein threw for 2,490 yards and 15 touchdowns this season, and ran for 980 yards. He already holds school records for career rushing TDs and touchdown responsibility, is second in scoring and third in total yards, passing efficiency and total attempts.
All the numbers certainly make a compelling case for Klein to do what Michael Bishop could not in 1998 — bring home the Heisman Trophy. Bishop, who led the Wildcats to the brink of the national title game, finished second in the voting to runaway winner Ricky Williams, the star running back at Texas. “He's a great guy, and that's really the highlight of who he is, and his individual success is definitely a tribute to our team,” Kansas State linebacker Arthur Brown said. “We definitely as a team feel like he's deserving of representing the Heisman candidate, but just having the opportunity is great in itself.”