Archive for Sunday, September 8, 2002

Kansas offense improves

QB Whittemore: ‘We wanted to win here, no doubt’

September 8, 2002


— Kansas University nearly doubled its offensive production from the first game of the season to the second.

It still wasn't enough for the Jayhawks, who suffered a 31-20 loss to UNLV on Saturday at Boyd Stadium.

"We wanted to win here, no doubt," said junior quarterback Bill Whittemore, who passed for 225 yards in his first start for KU. "UNLV was a good ballclub. We felt like we got better execution-wise. We're still making too many mistakes."

The Jayhawks didn't make any turnovers, though. In fact, both teams were plagued by turnovers in season-opening losses last weekend but made none on Saturday.

KU finished with 294 yards up from 150 in last week's 45-3 loss at Iowa State.

KU, however, was stymied in the first and third quarters, netting one yard in 30 minutes.

After struggling through the first quarter, Whittemore led KU on two scoring drives in the second as Kansas cut the halftime lead to 14-10.

"We have to come out of the box quicker," said Whittemore, who replaced fellow junior QB Zach Dyer in the starting lineup. "We did whatever we wanted in the second quarter. We just have to maintain that mentality throughout the whole game."

KU lost its momentum when UNLV made defensive changes in the third quarter. The Jayhawks netted just 10 yards in the quarter and trailed 24-10 entering the final 15 minutes.

The Rebels led 31-20 before Whittemore led KU on two late scoring drives, which ended with Johnny Beck's 27-yard field goal and Whittemore's 23-yard TD pass to Marcellus Jones, respectively.

KU's final scoring drive covered 93 yards in 12 plays, taking only 3:27.

"I feel good about Bill Whittemore," coach Mark Mangino said.

First Quarter6:46 Joe Haro 9 run. A shanked punt by Curtis Ansel gave UNLV possession at its own 47. Haro carried five times for 33 yards on the seven-play, 53-yard drive. Dillon Pieffer kick. (UNLV 7, KU 0)

Second Quarter9:25 Jason Thomas 6 run. After KU was forced to punt from its own 8, UNLV took over at KU's 43. The key play was an 11-yard run by Larry Croom, who was hit out of bounds by a KU defender. That personal-foul penalty moved UNLV to the KU 11. Two plays later, Thomas capped the four-play, 42-yard drive with a run to the left side. Pieffer kick. (UNLV 14, KU 0)7:11 Bill Whittemore 2 run. KU came up with three straight big plays: Whittemore's 17-yard pass to Mark Simmons, an 18-yard run by Whittemore and a 21-yard run by Clark Green. After a pass interference call on UNLV, Whittemore capped the seven-play, 80-yard drive. Johnny Beck kick. (UNLV 14, KU 7):18 Beck 30 FG. Two big third-down plays helped KU slice the halftime deficit to four points. First, Whittemore completed a 21-yard pass to Byron Gasaway on third-and-four from the KU 26. Later, UNLV was called for pass interference for the third time in the half on third-and-10 from the 28. KU's 14-play, 67-yard drive stalled at the 13, setting up a kick by Beck, who had missed from 32 yards late in the first quarter. (UNLV 14, KU 10)

Third Quarter10:47 Pieffer 44 FG. A pass-interference penalty against KU and a 15-yard reception by Troy Mason keyed an eight-play, 37-yard drive. (UNLV 17, KU 10):44 Thomas 19 run. Thomas completed a 34-yard bomb to Earvin Johnson to set up his own TD run on a five-play, 64-yard drive. Pieffer kick. (UNLV 24, KU 10)

Fourth Quarter11:47 Steven Costa 3 pass from Thomas. An 82-yard punt by Ansel set UNLV up at its own 15, but UNLV drove 85 yards in seven plays. Croom sparked the drive with a 49-yard run to the KU 22, and Thomas completed a 13-yard pass to Deon Burnett. Thomas tossed the TD pass three plays later. Pieffer kick. (UNLV 31, KU 10)5:47 Beck 30 FG. KU's 12-play, 78-yard drive included Whittemore's 39-yard pass to Brandon Rideau. (UNLV 31, KU 13):45 Marcellus Jones 23 pass from Whittemore. KU finished with a 12-play, 93-yard drive. Whittmore completed 8-of-10 passes on the drive, including a fourth-down pass to Simmons that kept the drive alive. Beck kick. (UNLV 31, KU 20)

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