Next Steps for Les Miles

Now that the David Beaty era is finally over, what are the next steps for new coach Les Miles?

I think it goes without saying the Mad Hatter has a full plate. And how ironic Thanksgiving was just a few days ago.

The first task on the docket will be finishing up his staff. There’s been a lot of speculation that Miles already has most of his staff in place, he just needs to finalize contract details. He also mentioned he’d like to interview every staff member on the current Kansas staff to see if there’s an opportunity to keep them.

My guess, if he were to keep anyone, the most likely candidates would be Tony Hull, Bill Miller and/or Garrett Riley. Will he keep all of them? One of them? None of them? We’ll find out soon enough.

There’s also been some chatter from fans and media members that Miles should keep Clint Bowen on the staff. I completely disagree and feel it benefits him more to steer away from Kansas and get experience at a smaller program. Maybe even land an FCS head coaching job in the near future. Many may not agree but that’s how I view Bowen, as a solid FCS head coach.

Now, there is one position I’d love to see Bowen kept at if he were to agree. A huge part to this Kansas program moving forward will be landing as many Kansas targets as possible. And not just scholarship players, but more importantly walk-on players. Bowen would be a great person to solely focus on Kansas recruiting and I think with his passion for the program and his all around enthusiasm for football he would greatly succeed in this area. Would he take a demotion, and a rather large one at that to stay at Kansas? Hard to tell but it’s an option.

While finalizing his staff Miles will need to find time to recruit as well. With a 2019 class that is currently ranked 174th in the nation per 247 Sports and only has one committed recruit, you can tell there is plenty of work to do. The good thing is he’s already reached out to the top Kansas target, being a DB, and a former LSU QB. As the days pass and his staff is finalized look for recruits to start committing and the class to fill out. And if I were a betting man I’d say it will look rather impressive for even being limited on available scholarships.

What Miles can’t forget about, though, are the potential walk-on players in Kansas that grew up huge fans of the program. Beaty made it a point to have a solid walk-on program involving loads of Kansas players. He had the right idea but it didn’t seem to blossom like he had hoped. Miles will need to not only continue this but be much more effective. Bill Snyder has taken advantage of this in the past, bringing in walk-on players in Kansas, developing them into quality football players, and then putting them on the field. With the limited scholarship numbers Kansas currently has this process can’t be more important.

And while Miles is doing all of this, finalizing his staff and recruiting, he’ll also need to find ways to generate enough buzz around the community to get season tickets sold. I’m sure his name enough will bring a lot of new comers, but it won’t do all the work. He’ll need to convince those on the fence and it likely won’t be an easy task especially with how the last ten years have turned out.

Either way, the future is absolutely bright. We have a true head football coach who’s both excelled at recruiting and winning football games. It’ll be a long nine months until next season but I can promise it’ll at least be exciting and entertaining.

 

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3 Replies to “Next Steps for Les Miles”

  1. I’m glad Ku finally got it right and hired the right coach. In 09 we could have hired harbaugh. It was obvious that he was a better coach than gil. In 11 we could have hired Doeren. Again it was obvious he was better than weis. Why does everyone over complicate the hiring of coaches when it’s obvious who good hires are? Even if ku didn’t hire Miles, they could have tried to get other great ones. Leach, Tedford, Brown, monken, satterfield, and harsin are some of the good names mentioned and all of them would have been better than a Gil or weis hire. It would have been so ku to hire McIntyre since I heard that named mention as well but glad that we have an administration now that seems to want to win at football. I can’t wait.

    1. Agreed. I think Lew Perkins almost single-handedly destroyed the KU football program. It’s frightening, saddening, and maddening to think where we’d be if Mangino was never fired or if Doeren was hired instead of Weis or Beaty. Dare I say there would be a dynasty, a lasting legacy of success in Lawrence.

  2. I’m with you regarding Clint Bowen. It’s time to say goodbye to Bowen. I appreciate all the hard work he has put into KU football, but his defenses just aren’t able to keep up in the B12. Was there noticeable improvement in his defense this year? Yes, but not enough. One could argue that the inept, impotent offense is at least partially to blame. That sentiment isn’t wrong, but there were so many times when the defense was out of position and just out played. They got burned for long pass plays and gashed up the middle on simple runs. There were some D linemen that got stood up after the snap and could never get any kind of penetration or pressure on the QB. I could go on, but it’s all been said before. For me, the only assistant I’d keep is Tony Hull. It would behoove us to keep that pipeline open in Louisiana (not that Miles couldn’t, but the recruits would probably be closer to Hull during day to day operations).

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