Kansas State University returns to the Alamodome Saturday to take on the University of Texas-San Antonio Roadrunners.
The Wildcats were defeated in the same building a season ago, losing to UCLA in an Alamo Bowl in which quarterback Jake Waters threw for 338 yards and accounted for three touchdowns.
With Waters graduating, a four man competition this off season resulted in naming Jesse Ertz as Waters' successor, but after just two snaps from center, Ertz was removed from the Wildcats 34-0 stomping of the University of South Dakota Coyotes with a knee injury. Coach Bill Snyder confirmed Monday that Ertz is out indefinitely going forward and did not rule out the possibility that the sophomore would miss the rest of the season.
Replacing Ertz, Junior Joe Hubener threw for 147 yards and a touchdown and ran for an additional 38 yards. Hubener, a dual threat for the quarterback, will have time to prepare as the starter against the University of Texas-San Antonio on Saturday, something he wasn’t able to do going into the season.
“I was definitely nervous going in there for the third snap of the game,” said Hubener. “I was not expecting to go in that early, but once I gathered myself, I knew I had to perform. I was the next guy in line and I knew I had to step up.”
Snyder seemed prepared Monday to move forward with the versatile Hubener, recalling the 6-foot-5 signal caller playing multiple positions in high school.
“There is a lot to be said for somebody that is experienced in so many other positions because you get a feel about the game from a different perspective. He has a little bit better understanding,” Snyder said. “We have always liked to have athletic quarterbacks, and his experience at other positions demonstrated that.”
Hubener is in a somewhat odd position, as the start Saturday will be the first of his career, including high school.
“It is an exciting opportunity. Having never started in high school, this is my first career start. I have something to prove, so hopefully we can go down there and get the win,” said Hubener.
The Wildcats should have an opportunity to open up the passing game Saturday, facing a Roadrunners team that gave up four touchdowns through the air to the Arizona Wildcats in a week 1 loss. Against a struggling Roadrunners defense Hubener should be able to gain both confidence and experience as Kansas State prepares for Big 12 play.
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