The hype that was Kansas football ended with a defeating loss to Baylor 26-7.
Unfortunately for Kansas that very well could have been their easiest game in the Big 12. Aside from maybe Kansas State who at times has looked as bad as they have.
Kansas should have been 4-0 at this time being that it’s Beaty’s fourth year on the job and with one of the easiest non-conference schedules in the nation. And then to follow that up with arguably the second worst Big 12 team? It was set up nicely for them.
But there’s no time to keep looking into the past or to think about what could have been. Now is when the real competition begins as Kansas faces an Oklahoma State team that looks to come in angry. And this isn’t a team you want to see play angry.
Let’s take a look at some stats to get a better idea…
|Total Offense||9th (539 yds/g)||88th (358 yds/g)||OSU|
|Passing||12th (314.5 yds/g)||111th (158 yds/g)||OSU|
|Rushing||24th (224.8 yds/g)||41st (199.8 yds/g)||OSU|
|First Downs||15th (102)||100th (70)||OSU|
|3rd Down Conv||30th||62nd||OSU|
|Total Defense||82nd (377 yds/g)||52nd (333 yds/g)||Kansas|
|Pass Defense||105th (265.8 yds/g)||44th (175 yds/g)||Kansas|
|Rush Defense||36th (111.5 yds/g)||80th (157.5 yds/g)||OSU|
|Sacks||1st (19)||98th (5)||OSU|
|Interceptions||57th (3)||2nd (7)||Kansas|
|Field Goals||12th (7/8)||34th (5/8)||OSU|
|Punting (Net Avg)||15th (42.1)||26th (41.1)||OSU|
|Kickoff Ret Avg||51st (22.0 avg)||91st (18.8)||OSU|
|Punt Ret Avg||85th (7.0 avg)||85th (7.0)||TIE|
|Turnover Margin||75th (-.25)||1st (+12)||Kansas|
|SOS (Per B Connelly)||16th||79th||OSU|
Three Stats That Stick Out
1.) Sacks – With an easy non-conference schedule and a presumably strong defensive line Kansas has only mustered up five sacks on defense. If they didn’t get those sacks early in the year during their easy part of the schedule it’s hard to imagine they’ll get them against tougher competition.
But what concerns me more than that is Oklahoma State’s 19 sacks. The Kansas offensive line has not been good this year which create a rough game for the QB.
2.) OSU Rush Defense – Kansas has the better overall defense but what concerns me is OSU’s rush defense. Their strongest area on defense is Kansas’ strength on offense. This isn’t a good match-up for Kansas and they’ll have to be creating with getting their RB’s the ball if they want to be successful.
3.) OSU Pass Defense – It’s debatable but Kansas faced arguably the worse defense in the Big 12 last week against Baylor. Unfortunately they didn’t take advantage and only scored seven points. But this week they face an OSU pass defense that also isn’t very good. They have young and inexperienced CB’s that Kansas should be able to expose. It still won’t be easy though, as Kansas’ pass offense is ranked 111th in the nation.
Three Keys to the Game for Kansas
1.) Start a Mobile QB – Time’s up for Bender as the starter. It’s not working and it won’t magically start working as the competition level gets better and better. Kansas needs to start a mobile QB, such as Miles Kendrick (if he’s healthy) or Carter Stanley. This makes their pass game two dimensional and will force OSU to pay attention to the QB. And not only do they start a mobile QB but allow them to throw the ball. Kansas can’t afford to be safe they have to take chances.
2.) Force Turnovers – The OSU QB isn’t the best they’ve had and is susceptible to throwing interceptions as he’s had four already on the year. Kansas will have to take advantage of this and at least force a few turnovers putting them in solid field position to score. Because at this point Kansas’ best offense is their defense.
3.) Special Teams – It’s pretty clear that OSU’s special teams is much better than Kansas’. But from what we’ve seen in previous games Kansas can have a solid special teams game. It will absolutely need to happen this game. And it includes keeping OSU drives long by having long and effective punts, making every field goal attempt, taking advantage of punt and kick off returns, and limiting OSU’s kickoff and punt return yards. If this game starts with a battle of field position that lands in Kansas’ favor.
38-3 Oklahoma State
After the last game at Baylor I don’t have the faith in Kansas’ offense to keep them in this game. I don’t think their defense will allow Oklahoma State to totally unload on them but it still won’t be enough to make this a respectable game. I do hope I’m wrong but history shows Kansas does not do well against top level Big 12 competition.