Archive for Tuesday, October 1, 1996

HENLEY FLATTENING FOES

October 1, 1996

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So far this season Kansas running back June Henley has been a human highlights film.

Henley has crossed the goal line 10 times -- nine rushing TDs and one reception for a TD -- in the Jayhawks' first three games and leads NCAA Div. I-A in scoring (20.0 points per game).

The 5-foot-11, 215-pound senior from Columbus, Ohio, also ranks No. 3 in rushing (201.3 yards pg) and No. 2 in all-purpose yardage (232.0).

"Wait'll you see him play both ways this weekend," KU coach Glen Mason quipped. "He's going to play tailback and middle guard. Think we could get some publicity out of that?"

Mason was kidding, of course. Henley won't be playing both ways. And if he did play defense, it wouldn't be at middle guard.

"I think free safety," Henley said.

Henley is well on his way to his first 1,000-yard rushing season since his freshman year in 1993. With eight games remaining he already has 604 yards.

Henley carried a body-punishing 41 times for a season-high 216 yards in Saturday night's 45-42 loss at Utah.

"I said we played hard and he epitomized how we played hard," Mason said. "He gained 200-plus yards, but that's misleading."

Henley's running, Mason explained, was the antithesis of that old Mutual of Omaha television commercial that showed a man carrying the ball while all the defenders either fell or missed him.

"Henley's runs weren't like that Mutual of Omaha ad," Mason said. "They were hard runs. He's getting a lot of yards after first contact."

Henley needs 692 yards to surpass Tony Sands as KU's career rushing leader.

Chuck Woodling

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