With over 300 former players in attendance for the K-State Family Reunion, Bill Snyder made his triumphant return to the sideline, guiding the Wildcats to their 15th consecutive home season-opening win. Overall, Snyder-coached teams own a 17-game winning streak in season openers. The crowd of 50,750 Saturday at Bill Snyder Family Stadium was not only the largest crowd in school history to witness a home-opener, but was also the third-largest crowd to see a non-conference game and the 17th-largest crowd to ever see a game at K-State.
Making his starting debut for the Wildcats, Coffman completed 14-of-27 passes for 182 yards and a pair of touchdowns to go with another score on the ground. He connected on a 40-yard strike to Snipes with 5:34 play in the second quarter for his first touchdown pass of the season. He followed with a second to Snipes right before the half with a 12-yard bullet as K-State jumped out to a 21-3 lead.
Coffman got plenty of help from the running game, as backs Daniel Thomas and Keithen Valentine helped the squad post its highest rushing total (225) since collecting 262 yards against Missouri on October 21, 2006. Thomas, making his debut in a Wildcat uniform, rushed for 104 yards on 23 carries. The 104 yards were the most by a K-State running back in a debut since 1993. Valentine added 89 yards on 11 touches, while tight end Jeron Mastrud eclipsed the 1,000-yard receiving mark for his career after 44 yards on Saturday.
The Wildcat defense held UMass to just 212 total yards on offense, including just 102 yards through the air. Safety Tysyn Hartman led the defense with six tackles, two pass breakups and two interceptions.
K-State travels to Lafayette, La., on September 12 to face Louisiana's Ragin' Cajuns. Kickoff is set for 6 p.m. and the game will air live on ESPN360.com.