Kansas State's sports teams are called the Wildcats and their colors are royal purple and white, though silver and grey can be
substituted. They participate in the NCAA's Division 1A and in the Big Twelve Conference. Sports divisions include football, men's basketball, women's basketball,
cross country and track, baseball, golf, tennis, rowing, equestrian and volleyball.
The football team was historically one of the worse in NCAA history until 1989, when the athletic department hired Bill Snyder as head coach. Snyder instilled faith and self-esteam in the remaining
players, recruited heavily and and expanded exercise facilities and equipment. After four seasons, he achieved three winning
seasons and, in 1993 the team competed in and won their first bowl game. Success continued
over the next decade. Also, when the new coaching staff took over, new helmets were designed, resembling the Dallas Cowboys, and featured a stylized wildcat called the "powercat". The
emblem became so popular that by the late 1990s it had replaced "Willie Wildcat", a
cartoonish character designed by art department students in the late 1950's.