Archive for Wednesday, December 12, 2001

Jayhawks’ staff beginning to take shape

Former KU player Henderson believed to be latest addition

December 12, 2001


While no official announcements have been made yet, it seems Kansas University football coach Mark Mangino's staff is taking shape.

Sources told the Journal-World on Tuesday that Mangino, who was hired on Dec. 3 to replace Terry Allen, already could have as many as four assistant coaches in place.

The latest addition to the staff is believed to be Pat Henderson, a former KU football player who was the defensive backs coach/special teams coordinator at Southern Methodist University during the 2001 season.

In addition to Henderson, the three other new members reportedly are former Ohio State graduate assistant Brandon Blaney and current KU coaches Clint Bowen and Travis Jones.

"Yeah, he's there," a source said of Henderson.

"That's the four (assistants) I've heard of," the source added.

Bowen and Jones have declined to comment about their status, but both were believed to be on the road recruiting Tuesday.

Also Tuesday, former Kansas City Chiefs center Tim Grunhard was expected to interview with Mangino. Grunhard, who has expressed interest in working for KU, hosts a sports talk show for a Kansas City radio station.

Two current Kansas State assistants have been approached by Mangino, sources have said. KSU offensive line coach/running game coordinator Paul Dunn might be KU's next offensive coordinator while KSU tight ends coach Matt Miller could be in line to be the Jayhawks' quarterbacks coach.

Olathe North High coach Gene Wier whose son, Brandon, served as KU's special teams captain this season has been publicly posturing for a job at Kansas. Maurice Mack, the Eagles' standout running back, has received interest throughout the Midwest during recruiting.

Two other high school coaches in the area Blue Springs (Mo.) coach Kelly Donohoe and Holton coach Brooks Barta remain possibilities as assistants. Donohoe played quarterback for the Jayhawks and Barta was a linebacker at K-State.

It's been speculated that two OU coaches that might come to Kansas are running backs coach Cale Gundy and wide receivers coach Steve Spurrier Jr. Both worked under Mangino, who was the Sooners' assistant head coach/offensive coordinator.

Prior to two seasons with the Mustangs, Henderson, 49, served as Tulsa's defensive coordinator/linebackers coach from 1997-99. He also had a three-year stint as defensive coordinator at Texas Christian University from 1994-96.

Henderson, a two-year letterwinner at defensive end and linebacker for the Jayhawks, began his coaching career as Coffeyville Community College's defensive coordinator from 1975-77.

During his 26-year career, Henderson also has spent time at Purdue (1990-93, defensive backs/special teams), Arizona State (1985-89, defensive backs), Tulsa (1983-84, linebackers), Indiana State (1980-82, defensive coordinator) and University of Nebraska-Omaha (1978-79, defensive backs).

Henderson has coached on eight different conference champions in five different leagues and has instructed 14 defensive backs who went on to the NFL.

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