Dylan Edwards: officially a Wildcat

Zara Thomas

More than 100 people waited with bated breath at noon Thursday at DHS as senior Dylan Edwards let the anticipation grow over which college he would choose to sign with.

When he finally announced Kansas State, there were cheers and applause from friends and family as Edwards put on his purple KSU hat and took off his hoodie to reveal a KSU T-shirt.

“I feel like I can be what I want to be at K-State,” Edwards said during the news conference. “I can be myself.”

Edwards shows off his KSU hat and t-shirt after announcing it to friends, family and media. “I knew in my process I wanted to do what was best for me and K State is what’s best for me,” Edwards said. Photo by Zara Thomas

Edwards, the 2021 GatoradeKansas Player of the Year, scored 38 touchdowns and had 2,603 yards as a junior. 

He was highly coveted by colleges around the country, but the biggest reason he chose K-State was because of the university’s loyalty towards him and persistence in getting him to go there, making them stand out among all the offers.

“You can see how loyal they are,” he said. “They came here the most out of any school. They talked to me every day…. On Christmas, they called me in the morning and said Merry Christmas. You just don’t get that nowhere else…. They were coming for me the whole time and that shows that they’re loyal, for real.”

Edwards officially told K-State coach Chris Klieman that he was committing during a visit over Father’s Day weekend.

“We walked around the stadium and we just had a meeting and then he asked me what could they do to, you know, get me to K-State? And I said ‘nothing.’ And then he was like, ‘what?’ And I was like, ‘yeah, nothing.’ And he was like, ‘well, OK,’” Edwards said. 

But that’s when he told Klieman that he was committing to K-State. 

He also told his parents that same weekend. 

You always want your children to perceive what you’ve done and be that much greater. And I think–I know he has that in him.”

— Leon Edwards

“I was elated,” said Edwards’ dad, Leon. “I didn’t know it was going to happen…. I just thought we were on a visit and we were going to come back and we were going to see the three schools and we were going to go through it like that.

“But he actually did it and I was elated. I shed some tears, I’ll be honest, and it was just a beautiful moment.”

Leon Edwards played at K-State, too, making the announcement all the more emotional.

“I don’t have words for that,” he said. “I’m just so elated that he made this decision on his own, and that he’s going to take it far more than where I took it. And that’s exciting because you always want your children to perceive what you’ve done and be that much greater. And I think – I know – he has that in him, and I know he’s going to finish that off.

“This is what we wanted from the beginning. We got pictures when he was a baby and in KSU gear; it’s in his DNA. So let’s go, baby! Let’s go!”

Edwards’ family wasn’t the only one who suspected he would decide on K-State, though.

Edwards and Hamblin hug after the press conference. “I’m just really happy for Dylan and i’m really proud,” Hamblin said. “I hope he balls out at the next level.” Photo by Zara Thomas

“Me and Dylan have been pretty close since I met him, so I’ve always kind of had a hunch that this is where he was going to go,” said Conley Hamblin, Edwards’ former teammate and friend. “He took me on his visit when K-State played Baylor this fall after one of our football games, and it was just a really cool atmosphere. I saw how they treated Dylan and then I thought if I was Dylan I wouldn’t want to go anywhere else.

“… K-State was where he was going to go, so I’m just really happy for Dylan and I’m really proud. I hope he balls out at the next level. I know he will.”

Despite the mystery of Edwards’ decision until today, he had been thinking about KSU since his first visit there.

“On my first visit when I went there, it was just like my dreams came true,” he said. “It was like, ‘wow, I’m really at one of the schools I’ve been dreaming of since I was a kid, wearing the purple and white.’ So when I went there, I just teared up.

“… And so now for me to, you know, finally be a part of the K-State fanbase and community and on the team this coming spring, I just can’t wait. It’s just so surreal.”

“I don’t see myself de-committing or leaving or doing anything. This is where I want to be. This is where I’m going to live.”