Burning KU Football Questions – August 2018

I’m back for another edition of “Burning KU Football Questions.” I have to thank everyone who had questions this time around because they were absolutely fantastic. Anyways, I hope you all enjoy the questions and enjoy the answers.

This is a great question and one that will be asked by media and Kansas fans up until a starter is announced, if in fact it ever happens.

But as it sits Kansas has three potential QB’s competing for the starting job—Carter Stanley, Peyton Bender and Miles Kendrick.

Last year Bender finished the year with 1609 yards passing, a 54.2% completion rate, 10 touchdowns and 10 interceptions, all adding up to a QB rating of 108.5.

Stanley finished with 1108 yards passing, a 54.6% completion rate, 4 touchdowns and 7 interceptions, all adding up to a 104.5 QB rating.

And then there’s the new guy Miles Kendrick who played JUCO last year and finished the season with 1889 yards passing, a 57.9% completion rate, 18 touchdowns and 9 interceptions. It’s also important to add Miles rushed for 417 yards and 5 rushing touchdowns.

It’s nice to see these stats to have an idea how the QB’s fared last year, but I don’t see them being a deciding factor when it comes to Beaty naming the starter this year.

If Bender is named starter it’ll be because of his ability to get the ball out quickly coupled with his accuracy. He’s not a guy that moves around very well in the pocket, which could be a concern if the OL isn’t up to speed. But if they are he could be the best option as he’s known as a gunslinger.

If Carter is named starter it’ll be because of his toughness and his ability to make plays outside of the pocket. He’s not well known for his accuracy but if the line goes as expected this year, which it isn’t expected to go well, he might be the best option since he’s much better on his feet and making plays happen.

If Miles is named starter it’ll be because of his leader mentality and his ability to use his legs to keep the defense honest. He won’t understand the offense as well as Bender or Stanley this year because he’s new to the program but from what I’ve heard he’s the best leader on the team when it comes to the QB position.

So, who starts?

Sunday I took to watching some game highlights on Peyton Bender and I noticed something—he’s actually really darn good, just not so much with KU. Hopefully Riley and Meacham can get that sorted out and just maybe we’ll see the Bender we expected to see last year.

So with that, I do think Bender will start week one and could be the best option at this point especially if the line shows improvement.

There’s no doubt both of these guys are crazy talented. But we still have to remember they are freshmen and haven’t had the preparation the other guys ahead of them have had. Not saying they won’t be prepared but it could be a factor especially at the beginning of the season.

As far as expectations go I could see Coe immediately landing himself on the two deep at CB and eventually even starting depending on how Defense, Taylor, Mayberry, Topps, Hempstead and Jones do. There’s a lot of potential ahead of him and they’re all guys that have more college experience than he does. But there’s no denying Coe’s raw talent and hard work ethic. If he doesn’t start at any point he will certainly push the guys ahead of him which will also help the team tremendously.

In regards to Pooka, I’m not sure he will end up ahead of Herbert or Dom Williams, but he will definitely get some opportunities especially if Beaty does go with a run heavy offense. I could also see Pooka being used a lot in screens or even lining him up in the slot. He’s insanely quick and strong for his size and getting the ball in his hands will only do good things for the offense.

Man, this is an awesome question and should be fun and interesting to answer.

Gill – The proper natural disaster to describe Gill’s time at KU would be a tornado. He came into a program that just had recent success so expectations were flying out of nowhere. He also made some weird changes, as in taking the names off the backs of the jerseys, but really didn’t have control of his players. He wanted to be likable but instead got the program caught up in a whirl wind of disaster. As his players began to lose eligibility he started to lose support as Head Coach and he was eventually let go. It’s also to note that his time at KU didn’t last very long. He came to KU in 2010 and was sent packing by 2011.

Weis – This was by far the most disastrous of coaches in the program since the Mangino era so I would have to say it’s labeled as a hurricane. All seemed to be well when Weis hauled in one of the best recruiting classes in recent memory, but it all fell to the waste side once nearly all of his loaded JUCO class never saw the field. What once was seen as football team was hit by a hurricane and no longer recognizable. It was so bad in fact that when Beaty got to Kansas he only had 29 scholarship players on the roster. Talk about the equivalent to turning a city upside down, which is something hurricanes are well known for.

Beaty – It stands to reason that Beaty’s time here has been a little more complicated than the other two. He came in after Hurricane Weis completely destroyed Kansas football and he was left to pick up all the pieces. The problem was he fell on famine right away. The recruiting grounds were darn near bare as he came to KU late in the game and wasn’t left with much success to go off of. So he had to conjure up what he could find and pray it would work out. As the famine sat in, he then experienced a winless drought in his first year, as his record sat at a lowly 0-12. It seemed last year his team was just about to experience some success, but the drought continued and the rain refused to fall. It doesn’t stop there though. Now that the expectations are at a mere zero with last year’s pathetic showing, the program has dried out so bad it’s on the verge of an all-out wildfire. But with a new AD at the helm there’s hope that the fire can be put out or stopped before it spreads too far.

I’m a huge Daylot Charlot fan and believer and I honestly think he could break out this year. I even have him listed as one of my breakout players. The problem is he has a lot to prove. Last year was a big letdown for him and to the point he was actually moved away from offense. Now that he’s back though I can see him stepping up and maybe even starting as long as he can stay healthy and gain some confidence.

As for Anthony “Pooka” Williams, it will be tough for him to start at RB. With Herbert and Dom Williams ahead of him I don’t see it happening. But that doesn’t mean he won’t see the field and see it often. My guess is he’ll be the guy when it comes to screen plays and could even be lined up in the slot with how quick he is.

I think there are a number of guys that would be interested in coaching KU football especially with Jeff Long as the AD.

First, I’ll give my fairy tale list.

  • Jim Harbaugh – Michigan
  • Dave Doeren – NC State
  • Lane Kiffin – FAU

Now for the more realistic list.

  • Jason Candle – Toledo
  • Willie Fritz – Tulane
  • Jeff Monken – Army
  • Craig Bohl – Wyoming
  • Scott Satterfield – Appalachian State
  • Neal Brown – Troy
  • Seth Littrell – North Texas
  • Dave Clawson – Wake Forest
  • Shawn Elliott – Georgia State
  • Ed Warinner – Michigan OL Coach

If I’m Long and the job comes open by seasons end I’m calling ALL of these guys and at least having a conversation. I’m betting at least half would listen.

This is a solid question and I honestly think they could. The biggest question would be do they have time to make that switch. I’ve even stated before I think they should have switched to an option offense and should start Miles Kendrick who is familiar with that type of offense.

But as we know Kansas currently runs an air raid style of offense. And as we’ve seen it hasn’t fared very well. In fact last year they finished 120th in total offense, 76th in passing, 125th in rushing, 76th in receiving, 124th in first downs, and 122nd in offensive efficiency. The main cause of this was the offensive line. They’ve been so atrocious that whoever is behind center needs an insurance policy just to hike the ball.  To further prove this point they gave up 29 sacks on the season, enough to land them a four way tie for 90th out of 130 teams.

The scary part is the offensive line doesn’t appear to be much better this year than it was last year. They lost their one and only bright spot in Mesa Ribordy to injury, who was their only true center on the roster—at least the only one capable of getting any playing time. Since then they’ve moved Andru Tovi to the position in hopes that he can conjure up enough practice reps to make the line show some semblance of competence come game day. It’s also to note they picked up a few graduate transfers that can play right away but they’ll need to get up to speed in whatever offense Beaty decides to run.

But this is why I think an option or run heavy style offense would work…

  • By running an option offense it takes less pressure off the offensive line and they’ll give up less sacks. Army finished first in the least amount of sacks given up all year. How many sacks did they give up? One. What type of offense do they run? The option.
  • The Big 12 primarily runs the air raid or spread style of offense. So naturally the defenses prepare to go up against this type of offense. If Beaty suddenly changed up his style of offense without any notice to the other teams it could throw them off guard and he could even sneak away with a few surprise wins.
  • Kansas’ most talented position is RB. By switching to this style of offense they would be putting the ball in the hands of their best play makers therefore giving a better chance of being competitive.
  • It slows the game down which will lead to less blowout loses. It also takes pressure off the defense as they’re able to get a rest on the side line instead of being trotted out there every 2-3 minutes.
  • Miles Kendrick is a good option for this style offense. He’s a great runner, he’s strong, he can make plays on the run, and is familiar with the option offense.

I’m not saying the option would save Beaty’s career or Kansas football’s 2018 season, but it definitely could make a splash.

This is such a great question and one that isn’t as hard to answer as some might think.

I’d talk about pride. I’m a huge Kansas fan, especially football, and I go to the games because I love the team and I love the sport. Things may not go as planned or may even go horribly wrong, but that doesn’t change my love for the program, nor should it change anyone elses.

At certain times in our lives we will all face tough times. Some worse than others. But those are the times you need the most support. Those are the times you need picked up and dusted off so you can get back at it. Going to the games isn’t going to give a bad coach a new contract because the fans are still supporting him. If a coach isn’t winning the process will take care of itself. But going to the games will instill pride and confidence in the players and it’s going to help provide them with the stadium and facilities that they need.

So at the end of the day, I go for my pride and I go for the players who work their butts off each and every game.

As for the best vs worst case scenario…

Best Case – Kansas starts non-conference 3-0 and uses this momentum going into conference play. They then surprise not only the Big 12 but the nation by winning three conference games against Baylor, Texas Tech and even KSU. This will eventually lead them to not finishing last in the Big 12 and even getting a bowl game bid. I know many people have lost faith in Beaty but if he can figure it out this year I think it would make Long’s decision easier and we can see what Beaty really has to offer moving forward.

Worst Case – Kansas once again goes 0-12 for the second time in Beaty’s four years but instead of Long firing Beaty he decides to wait because the interest in the job just isn’t there. So we’re forced to witness another sad display of college football the next year by Beaty and company. Also, in the midst of all this, Tony Hull decides to leave the program because of the losing culture and finds himself at LSU as RB’s coach where he eventually pulls all the Louisiana recruits to.

I have to be honest, this question made me sad laugh. I feel your pain Andrew and hopefully I have some sort of answer for you.

There’s no doubt that Kansas football has been a joke around the college football world. It sucks and it’s embarrassing if you’re a fan.

But I think I can line this out in a few steps …

  1. Drink beer or whiskey and let the pain get easier to tolerate. The more you drink the less it starts to matter.
  2. Laugh with the people that make fun of you. It’s hard to make fun of someone who laughs at themselves.
  3. Throw in a few jabs at yourself. Don’t go too deep though. As in “our team sucks so bad we only put up 21 yards at TCU.” That’s a little too far and could give them some major ammunition for later when it’s your turn to talk crap.
  4. Actively cheer against their team. Don’t show it so much but it can give you a great sense of gratification deep down inside when their team loses.
  5. Finally, if it’s a Mizzou fan making fun of you ask them again, “who are you?”. And if it’s a KSU fan making fun of you remind them we own them in basketball AND football. Also, show them a re-run of the Svi travel. That’ll make their heads explode.

Well, that’s it for this edition of KU Football Burning Questions. Thanks again and I hope you enjoy!

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3 Replies to “Burning KU Football Questions – August 2018”

  1. In terms of the question of going to a game. I think it’s a lotta fun to go. The setting on the hill is great and as David Lawrence says its one of the best. It easily could be with a few upgrades and a decent team. I love being in Lawrence in general I usually make it to a football and basketball game each year. The campus in the fall is just beautiful when the leaves begin to fall, it’s always fun down Mass street before and after the games. I enjoyed every part of my trip last year to the CMU game besides the game itself. I’ve never seen so many guys outta position on defense, basic stuff that didn’t fly in middle school. Never seem a team less energy, they looked like they had way better things to do on their Saturday. Everyone including the players say how much they like Beaty, my question when will more than 3 guys go fight for him and play hard the whole game?

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