MANHATTAN, KS (AP) — Kansas State coach Bill Snyder is the runaway pick as the AP’s Big 12 coach of the year after leading the Wildcats to a 10-2 finish and an appearance in the Cotton Bowl.

Picked to finish eighth in the Big 12, the Wildcats instead finished eighth in the BCS after beating ranked teams Baylor and Texas and losing only to Oklahoma State and Oklahoma. They were snubbed by the Sugar Bowl for two teams with lesser resumes, but will play Arkansas in a high-profile Cotton Bowl matchup.

Snyder was selected on 16 of the 17 ballots turned in by AP members who regularly cover the league. Cowboys coach Mike Gundy received the only other vote.

It’s the third time Snyder has been the Big 12’s coach of the year, but the first since he came back following a brief retirement. He was also the AP’s national coach of the year in 1998.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)