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Archive for Wednesday, September 6, 2006

Ex-Kansas QB fills new role

Last spring, Whittemore worked for KU’s next foe

September 6, 2006

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More often than not, Bill Whittemore is doing the dirty work these days - just a few years removed from being The Man on Kansas University's football team.

Now a graduate-assistant coach on offense, Whittemore's day revolves around film dissection, practice preparation and other "knick-knack stuff," as he'd put it.

"Bill's down in front of that computer working on stats all the time," KU coach Mark Mangino said with a chuckle. "The poor guy's worn out. G.A. work is tough work when it comes to game preparation."

With KU playing Louisiana-Monroe on Saturday, one would think Whittemore would have a pulse on the next game.

Whittemore spent last spring as a defensive G.A. at Louisiana-Monroe.

But with coaching staffs using game film as a crutch every week, Whittemore's influence toward preparation is minimal at best.

"Probably a little insight on personnel if they ask a question," Whittemore said. "But it's the same week for me as it was last week. I'm getting the film ready. They trust their breakdown routine, and we go from there."

Added Mangino: "He hasn't really lent that much to us that we can't see on tape.

"He was there for spring ball and gone, so he really doesn't have a lot to offer. He's just down there punching out all the statistics and breaking down game film and doing those things."

Whittemore was KU's beloved starting quarterback in 2002 and 2003, leading the '03 Jayhawks to the Tangerine Bowl. After a brief attempt at the NFL - followed by a season in the Arena Football League - Whittemore turned his attention to coaching, first as a high school assistant and then as a G.A. for coach Charlie Weatherbie in Monroe.

Weatherbie, the father of former KU quarterback Jonas Weatherbie, hired Whittemore in January. After going through spring drills, a G.A. opening emerged at Kansas, and it was too good to pass up. Whittmore left ULM after just one semester.

Now, after having game plans made for him to execute at KU, he's seeing the other side of the spectrum - very different and very humbling at the same time.

"It's crazy right now," Whittemore said. "It's amazing to see what all goes behind it, coming from a player. It changes day to day, really.

"I enjoy it because I've got nothing else to do. But if I did, it'd be tough."

Whittemore laughs at that, before revising his statement.

"I'm enjoying my time," he insists. "Anything I can do to help, it's something I want to do."

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