Collin Klein rushed for a pair of touchdowns and threw for one more, as No. 7 Kansas State punched its ticket to the Fiesta Bowl with an emphatic 42-24 drubbing of the 23rd-ranked Texas Longhorns on Saturday at Bill Snyder Family Stadium.
Klein, a Heisman Trophy candidate, threw for 184 yards on 8-of-14 passing, while running for 103 yards on 23 carries. John Hubert also had a huge day on the ground for the Wildcats (11-1, 8-1 Big 12), running for three touchdowns and 66 yards on 14 carries.
Tyler Lockett hauled in two passes for 73 yards and a touchdown as the Wildcats bounced back nicely from a forgettable 52-24 loss to Baylor on Nov. 17.
Kansas State ends its conference schedule in a tie for the top spot with Oklahoma, who topped TCU earlier on Saturday, but the Wildcats will get the BCS bid as a result of a 24-19 win over Oklahoma back in September. The Sooners, however, are still alive to receive an at-large bid to a bowl game.
"I think we played really well," Kansas State coach Bill Snyder said. "We had some really good things happen tonight and the guys played hard."
Case McCoy threw for 314 yards and two touchdowns in place of David Ash and Malcolm Brown caught six passes for 43 yards and a touchdown. He also ran for 40 yards and a touchdown for the Longhorns (8-4, 5-4), who finished the regular season on a two-game losing streak. Jaxon Shipley also caught a touchdown pass in the losing effort for Texas.
Trailing 17-14 midway through the third quarter, Klein led an 11-play, 67- march, which Hubert capped with a 2-yard TD sprint, which made it 21-17 with 47 seconds to play in the third quarter.
The Wildcats ran away with it from there.
After forcing a three-and-out, Kansas State got the ball back at its own 45 and quickly made it a two-score game when Klein found Lockett wide open along the left sideline for a 55-yard touchdown, making it 28-17 early in the final quarter.
The Longhorns had a chance to cut into the lead on their ensuing drive, but Nick Jordan missed a 40-yard field goal.
After forcing a three-and-out, Texas again had a chance to trim the margin, but on fourth down, Quandre Diggs muffed the punt and Kansas State got the ball back on the Texas 39.
Klein and Hubert combined to rush the ball eight times following the recovery and Hubert capped the 39-yard drive with a 1-yard TD plunge to make it 35-17 with 3:11 remaining.
On the next Longhorns possession, McCoy was intercepted by Allen Chapman, who returned the ball 35 yards to the Texas 10 before Klein finished off a short 2-play drive with a 9-yard touchdown run.
McCoy hit Brown with a 9-yard touchdown strike with just over a minute to play to cap the scoring.
"Collin Klein did some great things in the fourth quarter and was physical and he also made the perfect throw that really put us in trouble," Texas coach Mack Brown said. "(I am) proud of the effort our guys put out. I thought they did exactly what we asked them to do. We will leave tomorrow, learn where we are playing our bowl game, and we will regroup and get ready to work."
After a three-and-out on the Longhorns' first possession of the game, things didn't improve much on their second drive, as McCoy was picked off by Nigel Malone, who returned the ball 29 yards and appeared to score the first touchdown of the game.
The play was reviewed however, and it was determined that Malone let go of the ball before he crossed the goal line. K-State was awarded possession at the Texas 1-yard line and Klein bowled his was in for the score and an early 7-0 lead.
Kansas State bridged the first and second quarters with an extensive 13-play, 82-yard march to the Texas 17, but on 3rd-and-5, Klein floated one over the middle and was intercepted by Adrian Phillips.
Following the pick, Texas took over on the 20 and on the first play of the drive, McCoy swung one out to Daje Johnson, who got to the outside and rumbled down the left sideline for 70 yards to the Wildcats' 10.
The Kansas State defense held, though, as the Longhorns were forced to settle for a 37-yard field goal off the boot of Jordan, cutting the deficit to 7-3.
The Wildcats were forced to punt on their next drive and Texas got the ball back on the 28 with 10 1/2 minutes to go in the opening half.
McCoy led a 7-play, 72-yard drive to the K-State 14 before finishing the trek by fitting a tough pass between two defenders to Shipley for the touchdown and a 10-7 lead.
Texas went for a little trickery on its final offensive play of the first half, going with a fake field goal attempt, but the pass fell incomplete and the Longhorns held a 10-7 cushion at halftime.
The Wildcats got the ball to begin the second half and quickly marched 75 yards in seven plays before Klein timed an option pitch to Hubert perfectly for the 2-yard touchdown before getting drilled to the turf, making it a 14-10 game.
On the second play of the Longhorns' ensuing drive McCoy hit Jonathan Gray for 30 yards and D.J. Monroe ran for 46 yards two plays later down to the K- State 4. Brown finished the 7-play, 90-yard drive with a 2-yard TD plunge to put Texas back up 17-14 with 7:24 on the third-quarter clock.
Kansas State improved to 15-5 following a bye week under coach Bill Snyder ... Kansas State holds an 8-5 edge over Texas in the all-time series ... Texas fell to 42-10 in Big 12 road games under coach Mack Brown ... Texas outgained Kansas State, 413-352 ... Texas picked up 21 first downs to just 15 for the Wildcats ... Kansas State went 8-of-13 on third down, while the Longhorns converted 5-of-12 third-down chances.