Kansas State athletic director Gene Taylor said Monday that he expects a final decision regarding Bill Snyder’s future as the Wildcats’ football coach by the end of the week.
In an interview on KMAN-AM (1350) radio in Manhattan, Taylor said he had spoken with Snyder briefly following the Wildcats’ season-ending 42-38 loss at Iowa State on Saturday night and again Monday morning.
“We chatted a little bit this morning and we just kind of laid out some timeline and figured out what our next steps are going to be,” Taylor said. “I think we’ll get some things settled this week.
“He’s got some things he wants to work through and I think he deserves that opportunity. And I’m going to be out of town tomorrow and he’ll be out of town tomorrow and we’ll probably get together later this week and kind of talk through the season and talk about things we need to do to get better and figure out what the next steps are.”
K-State just finished its season at 5-7, the worst record since Snyder returned from a three-year retirement in 2009. For the first time since 2009, the Wildcats will not be going to a bowl game, ending an eight-year postseason streak.
That has led to rampant speculation that Snyder, 79, would step down despite having signed a new five-year contract in August.
Stopping short of saying the decision is entirely up to Snyder, Taylor made it clear that the hall-of-fame coach’s input will weigh heavily into the final decision on whether he comes back for a 28th season.
“Coach gets a lot of latitude based on what he’s done for our program, and as much as he’s done, not only for football, but for this institution and really for the state of Kansas in a lot of ways,” Taylor said. “I think some people have a tendency to lose sight of that pretty quickly and that’s disappointing in some ways.
“But at the end of the day, my job as athletic director and President (Richard) Myers’ is we need to figure out, ‘How do we continue to make our program better?’ At some point, we’ll come to that conclusion after we talk to (Snyder).”
When asked after the game about his personal timeline, Snyder understandably was not in the mood.
“Listen, that’s the last thing on my mind right now,” he said, adding that he was still processing the loss. “I’m going to have to think about how I respond to this loss, just in terms of what my feelings are.”
With fellow Big 12 schools Kansas and Texas Tech making coaching changes — KU already hired Les Miles to replace the fired David Beaty — and other jobs opening up throughout the country, Taylor was asked whether he felt pressure to resolve K-State’s situation quickly.
He said he is less concerned about other schools snapping up potential candidates than he is making sure he finds a good fit for K-State.
“To me, if there’s a change, I have confidence in our program, I have confidence in who we are as an institution and we’re going to have a lot of candidates that are going to be interested in coming to K-State,” he said. “Again, that’s all a matter of ifs, and we’ll work through that.
“But I don’t worry about what other people are doing. The minute I start doing that, then I’m going to be a mess.”
Neither will he be influenced by fan polls that call for Snyder to step aside.
“If I start paying attention to that to drive my decisions, then I’m going to be in big trouble at some point,” he said. “I’m literally reading an article about coaching decisions and long-term contracts and how they get made and a lot of times some bad decisions have been made by pressure from the fan base, or what the public perception is.
“We’re not going to do that here. I’ve got a great president and he and I will talk about where we are as a program, and at the end of the day we’ll make a decision that’s best for our program, whether it’s a short-term decision for the next couple of years or a long-term decision down the road.”