FRISCO, Texas — Bill Snyder is about as steady as it gets in college football coaching.
So it won’t come as a surprise that the longtime Kansas State coach is planning to be back on the sidelines for the Wildcats’ opener Sept. 2 against Central Arkansas.
The return of the 77-year-old Snyder is coming less than six months after he was diagnosed with throat cancer.
Snyder told reporters in April that he had completed his cancer treatments, and he was back on field for the first half of K-State’s spring game. He became a little winded and watched the second half from the press box.
But Snyder was tanned this week and appeared ready for the challenges of his 27th season as the Wildcats’ head coach.
“Well, I’m doing fine. I mean, the recovery is ongoing, quite obviously, but I’m doing fine, getting around fine,” he said at Big 12 Media Days. “Don’t have any issues right now other than trying to prepare for the season.
“That’s always an ongoing issue. But I’m doing fine. I appreciate you asking me.”
Later, the Hall of Fame coach turned philosophical when asked to reflect on his career.
He was directed into coaching after playing sports as a youth. Snyder said he played many sports in high school, although he wasn’t very good at any of them. His best sport, he said, was swimming.
“I always felt, for whatever reason, that if you participate in sports and you make it a big part of your youth, the normal happenstance is that you continue as a coach,” Snyder said. “It’s just what you do.”
Directed to coaching since high school
Coaching was part of his plan since he was a teenager.
“From the time I was 14 or 15 years old, I knew that was what I was going to do and never thought about anything else,” he said. “Nothing altered that path and made me look back and say I should have done something else or I shouldn’t have done it. I have no regrets about coaching, whatsoever.”
Snyder said Tuesday he indeed will retire some day.
“I’ve said this for many years and I’ll hold to it: I’ll coach as long as my family wants me to and as long they are comfortable with it and as long as I’m having a positive impact on the foundation of the lives of the young people of our program, and as long as my health is what it should be.”