Kansas State quarterback Skylar Thompson 'trending in the right direction' for Texas Bowl

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Kansas State coach Chris Klieman said Tuesday that he expects quarterback Skylar Thompson (7) to be ready to play on Feb. 4 when the Wildcats face LSU in the Texas Bowl.
Kansas State coach Chris Klieman said Tuesday that he expects quarterback Skylar Thompson (7) to be ready to play on Feb. 4 when the Wildcats face LSU in the Texas Bowl.

MANHATTAN — It appears Skylar Thompson is on track to lead Kansas State's offense in the Texas Bowl.

K-State coach Chris Klieman stopped just short Tuesday of guaranteeing that his sixth-year senior quarterback will be ready to go when the Wildcats face LSU on Jan. 4 NRG Stadium in Houston.

"He's trending in the right direction," Klieman said. "He has practiced.

"We hope he doesn't have any setbacks, and if he doesn't then in all likelihood he'll play, and we're excited about that."

Thompson suffered what appeared to be an ankle injury late in the Wildcats' Nov. 20 game against Baylor and missed the regular season finale the following week at Texas. He also missed a nonconference game against Nevada and the Big 12 opener at Oklahoma State with a knee injury.

"We're still have a couple of weeks away, so I don't want to (guarantee it) in case we have a setback, but he's trending in the right direction," Klieman said.

More: Kansas State's Felix Anudike-Uzomah and Cooper Beebe named to AP All-Big 12 football team

Thompson took advantage of an extra season of eligibility granted by the NCAA last year in response to the coronavirus pandemic, partly in hopes of finishing on a high note after missing the last seven games of 2020 with a shoulder injury.

"It's big time for him to possibly get a chance to finish it off down in Houston, playing against LSU," running back Deuce Vaughn said of Thompson. "It's really big, and I'm excited for him to possibly have that opportunity.

"If he's ready to go, we'll be right there rallying behind him because that's our quarterback, that's our guy. I'm excited to possibly have him back. He's looking good."

Sophomore Will Howard, who started the three games Thompson missed this season and also the last seven games last year, would get the call if Thompson can't go.

But the Wildcats' offense has been much more effective with Thompson at the controls. While limited in the running game because of the knee injury, he has enjoyed his best season as a passer, completing 68.8% of his attempts for 1,854 yards and nine touchdowns with four interceptions.

K-State are looking to bounce back from a disappointing finish to the regular season after falling 20-10 to Big 12 champion Baylor and then 22-17 to a struggling Texas team. Vaughn also said the team would like nothing better than to see Thompson go out on top.

"Sending Sky-T out with a big-time win would be huge, just for his legacy and everything he's done for the K-State nation and us as a family here at K-State," Vaughn said. "In the locker room, in this building, he's been somebody that's like a rock for us, and man, to send him out like that would be big-time."

This article originally appeared on Topeka Capital-Journal: Kansas State football's Skylar Thompson expected to play in Texas Bowl

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