The Kansas State Wildcats look to be one of the most experienced teams in the Big 12 heading into 2014 at several key positions which made them a darkhorse pick to make a run at the conference title. But the team took a hit to their depth chart on Tuesday when one of their most explosive offensive weapons from 2013, Daniel Sams, announced his decision to transfer. With Sams out of the picture, K-State loses a major playmaker that gave them an edge in 2014.
After backing up Heisman Trophy finalist Collin Klein in 2012, Sams split time in 2013 with junior college transfer Jake Waters. Despite sharing reps under center with Waters, Sams emerged as one of the most consistent playmakers on the Cats’ offense last season. He led all quarterbacks in the Big 12 with 807 yards rushing (No. 9 overall in the Big 12) with 11 rushing touchdowns.
But Sams eventually lost playing time as the season wore on to the more polished passing Waters and attempted just one pass in the team’s win in the Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl. This offseason, K-State announced that Waters would be the No. 1 quarterback full-time in 2014, prompting Sams to request a position change to wide receiver for spring practice.
The move seemed to be a win-win for the Wildcats as it kept Sams’ athleticism on the field as much as possible and kept the former quarterback in the mix on offense. But the Cats have some excellent talent at receiver for 2014 with Tyler Lockett and Curry Sexton returning and Sams struggled to make an impact during the spring. He finished his K-State career with just two catches for nine yards in the spring game.
Now, Sams will take his talents closer to his Slidell, Louisiana, home and play at the FCS level for the final two years of his college career. His playmaking ability was a huge boost the Wildcats’ offense in 2013 and will be an added dimension that Kansas State will miss in 2014.