I think it’s fair to say Kansas football really didn’t show much improvement from Beaty’s first year in 2015 to his third year in 2017.
|Kansas Football 2015||Kansas Football 2017|
|Total Offense – 119th||Total Offense – 120th|
|Passing – 80th||Passing – 76th|
|Rushing – 121st||Rushing – 125th|
|Receiving – 80th||Receiving – 76th|
|First Downs – 114th||First Downs – 124th|
|Offensive Efficiency – 118th||Offensive Efficiency – 122nd|
|Total Defense – 128th||Total Defense – 118th|
|Passing Defense – 125th||Passing Defense – 126th|
|Rushing Defense – 125th||Rushing Defense – 71st|
|Sacks – 65th||Sacks – 92nd|
|Interceptions – 92nd||Interceptions – 125th|
|Defensive Efficiency – 115th||Defensive Efficiency – 110th|
|Field Goals – 124th||Field Goals – 32nd|
|Punting – 9th||Punting – 12th|
|Special Teams Efficiency – 125th||Special Teams Efficiency – 124th|
Obviously it will be difficult to show improvement in all of these areas in 2018 but what are the three most important areas that need improvement in order to get some wins?
- Offensive Line – Kansas MUST show some sort of improvement in this area. I don’t really understand how this has been an issue for almost a decade but at some point it has to start clicking. It especially will be difficult for them this year because they lost their top offensive lineman in starting center Mesa Ribordy. And then there’s the fact that they don’t really have a true center on the roster after his departure and have had to move Andru Tovi to that position. It appears he’s done well but showing up in practice doesn’t mean he’ll show up in games. Either way if Kansas can’t get their OL to get it together their offense will not succeed regardless of who’s behind center.
- Defensive Secondary – Kansas’ defensive secondary was absolutely torched last season. It didn’t matter who they played the opposing team did whatever they wanted and really loaded up the stat sheets. The good news is Kansas has some returning starters and have even picked up some big names to help out—Coe Harris, Elijah Jones and Elmore Hempstead. It’s not a guarantee that all of these guys will work out but I can tell you Coe Harris will be a stud. He’ll be the sole reason Kansas doesn’t finish in the bottom 100’s in passing defense. It’ll be up to the rest of the guys to make sure they can keep Kansas competitive in games.
- Quarterback – It’s a well-known fact Kansas hasn’t had luck at the QB position since Todd Reesing came through. The closest they’ve come to a decent QB since has been Jordan Webb and Michael Cummings—neither of which totaled up to 2000 yards passing in a year. And just for perspective, Todd Reesing threw for over 3,400 yards in 3 of his 4 years. I’m not saying they need another Todd Reesing—a guy like that only comes around once every 50 years, at least for programs like Kansas. But it’d nice to have a guy that could throw for over 2,000 yards and have at least double the amount of TD’s than he has interceptions. I think there is potential in Miles Kendrick but it’ll be interesting to see if Beaty gives him a shot early on. It appears Bender is poised to be the starter again and like last year he showed up well in practice but in games folded like a Texas Hold Em star on a rainbow rag flop.
If Kansas can’t improve in these three areas I see another long year ahead. And by long year I mean another 1-11, or even worse 0-12 season. It’ll be interesting to see how the summer plays out and if Beaty and staff can make the necessary adjustments to get it clicking.